Great briefcase! I look at it everyday because I'm so amazed by the craftsmanship, texture, and the details of the bag. I love the smell of it too. I'm going to hike Mt. Fuji with my med tb briefcase this summer.
Ok I'll admit I have not had this bag long. I was very skeptical once I took it out of the box. It was super heavy and much larger than expected. In addition, the leather was so stiff that I could barely put my daily essentials in the bag. Don't be discouraged! Just roll up your sleeves and give it a good beating--it will soften up. I sat on mine for a while and then bent every corner I could. Once it's softer, the bag will readily go from very thin when empty to massive when full. I like that because it means this bag can be used for many situations. Overnight trip? You bet. Day on the town? Easily. Board meeting? Prepare for compliments.
The firt time I took this bag out it was for a career fair. I think I got 5 compliments in about 3 hours. In addition, this thing is a great conversation piece. Although the bag was heavy, I was able to lug it all over Manhattan comfortably for a day. And finally, although I didn't think it would be classy enough to use with a suit, it is far beyond what most men carry for business.
I'll also say that getting a breifcase will be a huge adjustment for someone (like me) who still uses their backpack from college. You will not get the same versatility here, nor will you get quite the same amount of room. In order to be happy with this bag, you have to give up a lot of the conveniences of your old backpack (super light weight, zippers, additional comfort, extra pockets). In the end, it is probably going to be worth it because this bag is way more classy and will last forever.
And I'll just say that I also tried the slim breifcase and found it to be too small. It was a lot lighter, but could not hold as much stuff. It also did not have exterior pockets for things like water bottles, meaning you would have to basically sacrifice a whole compartment for food and drink. So I would recommend the classic because it is far more versatile than the slim, and equally as attractive. But it depends on your needs.
Bottom line: get one of these right now and don't look back.
I just received my XL Classic Briefcase (Dark Coffee Brown), and I couldn't be more excited. I got all of my major Saddleback purchases through the Dave's Deal's (discounted from 10-25% off) feature on the Saddleback web page and I highly recommend you check out those for great discounts. I won't repeat what you already know about the awesome quality, incredible customer service and unbeatable warranty with Saddleback leather products, but suffice to say...its all true. If you're reading reviews, you may still be on the fence about whether to buy, or which size. I will say first: ignore the complaints you may sometimes read about the bags being too heavy. They aren't. Now, as to the question of XL or Large? Of course it is up to what you want to use it for. If for carrying a laptop, some books and a file or two, the large would be good. If you want to carry more than that, the XL is the way to go. I am 6'3", and....big, shall we say, and the XL fits my XL lifestyle (hehee). Now I will warn you that once you buy one Saddleback leather product, you will become addicted to their quality, and the great feeling you have owning such a high quality product. So far I have the Large Satchel, the XL classic briefcase, the messenger bag, medium travel case, the pouch, and a small bi-fold wallet (all in DCB). About the prices: they are actually relatively inexpensive compared to other "luxury leather" makers' stuff that retails in the thousands for what I would consider inferior craftsmanship and materials. As Dave says, "buy nice or buy twice." (I think he said that in one of his videos). Dave and Suzette: keep doing what you do. Thank you for making such awesome products and I wish you (and the whole saddleback leather 'family') love, happiness, and peace.
Yes -- I've also become addicted to awesome Saddleback Leather. I started with a simple credit card wallet...followed by an Ipad 1 case, Large Classic Briefcase and keychain, and set of Medium Utility Straps. All in Dark Coffee Brown. Just got the straps in the mail today....already thinking of ways to use them and what I could hang from / strap to my Briefcase.... About the briefcase: tough as nails. I used to worry about my old 'padded' computer bag. I used to fuss over it, worried about a raindrop or two, and overly careful with it. But that's just not my style. I wanted something tough and rugged and of lasting quality. This bag checks every box. I regularly carry my Macbook Pro, Ipad, notepad and papers, power cords, sunglasses case -- and I always carry a baseball, as I've got Spring Training fever right now.... Plenty of room for all those things and more. I would not consider the bag heavy. Rather, I would suggest that all lesser bags are lightweight. Next on my radar will be a Saddleback Notepad Holder or Belt -- haven't decided on which yet.... Thanks to Dave and everyone at Saddleback.
For how much I have been talking about this bag at work and with my friends, you would think that I owned shares in whatever Dave was selling.
I say this because I have been talking about SBL for MONTHS, 9 to be exact, before I even laid my hands on one. And like every anal retentive doctor can be, I have trolled the youtube videos, Dave's personable videos, styleforum, googled images of the different colours and styles. If you look hard enough, there is an amazing amount to find.
I debated long and arduously about what I wanted and needed it for, whether the classic was too big and manly for my willowy thin [130 pound], 5'9.5" on a good day [in flats] frame... and whether my puny muscles could lug around a 3 kg bag-- empty. But I will get to that...
I ended up with the medium tobacco rather than the chestnut (which is probably more professional and which I regret a little, but the grass is always greener). It doesn't look monstrous on me, but it is -- solid...
The bag is amazing in backpack form... it hangs just below the shoulder blades/scapula, hugging the body close to distribute the weight well. And honestly, 3 kilos feels pretty darn light when the bag looks and smells so yummy.
Ironically no one has time to give me compliments because before they get a word out edgewise, I start jabbering on about the bag, the warranty, the design and general perks about the bag-- which is everything maybe minus the price. Most of my friends aren't quite sold, but just give me a little time... they will come around.
For the beautiful ladies out there who are doubting, this bag is not for the faint of heart... If you can't cope the load, the medium satchel looks like an awesome alternative. The capacity of this mother of a bag is amazing... a few overly heavy 1200 page books... and you think your arm will fall off-- backpack mode here we come. A 4.5 inchi width is more than enough for practical day to day use for most people I suspect-- even me.
Anyhow, I have been rambling long enough... even with the $75 shipping to Australia, this bag is worth every last penny of money hard earned. I feel like a school girl that just landed her crush that she has been languishing over-- inordinately happy and over the moon!
Having tried many bags as backpack for my bicycle commute I attest that the SB Classic Briefcase is the best bag I have ever used. I own the large classic as I am a big man. I carry laptop, books and the necessities of life such that the combined weight is considerable. Herein is the magic. Thanks to the design features of the bag the weight is distributed evenly across my back so the bag is comfortable. The straps have large pads so they do not dig into my shoulders. The conversion from satchel strap to backpack strap is simple. The effect of tightening the two side straps around the bag is to round out the base so that the leather base of the bag is not sticking into my back. It is waterproof. The weight moves with my body as opposed to what happens with any pannier system.
Thanks to this bag I no longer have to pack a cycle bag as a separate entity to my work bag. The two are one and the same.
Just got my back, was one of Dave's deals. Dave must be aweful picky since I cannot find any flaw at 10 feet let alone 2 feet but thanks for the discount. Have traveled last 14 years and went through God knows how many suitcases and laptop backs/backpacks. Not any more love this case and will be my last one. Built to last, worth every penny and don't be scared about Dave's deals.
I bought my bag in Chesnut back in 2008. It has travelled with me to Moscow, Russia and back to Texas, has gone with me to Washington DC several times, Florida and all over the big State of Texas.
It barely has a scratch and is the most durable piece of luggage that I have ever owned. I use it typically as a carry-on bag for flying, and as a front seat travel bag when I am driving.
I have loaded it completely with everything from laptops, camera equipment, work documents/folders, chargers, keys, passports, baby items (yes....it even has been used to carry toys, formula, diapers etc of our two little girls over the years).
I can load it and always feel confident that it will hold. The heavy duty strap is always useful for carrying heavier loads, or for when my hands are full carrying other things.
Although the size I bought was a bit too big for day to day briefcase use back and forth to the office, it has been a reliable part of my life, and like the advertisements say, will be there for my family long after I'm gone from this world.
If you are wanting a great multi-purpose bag that will handle everything, lasts forever, and causes people to stop you and compliment you on it, then this is what you need.
I wholly recommend it. Thanks!
How often does a product exceed your expectations? This SB briefcase is awesome and will do just that even if you are tough to please! I have had this briefcase about a month (my 2nd SB product) and it rocks.
I ordered the medium because I was concerned about the weight once I got it loaded down. I can carry my 15 inch laptop, an iPad, several files, and only have one of the two internal sides full. Yet, it is not the weight that sticks out in your mind when carrying it but the solidness of the product. It is built to last and a by-product is that it will get noticed by your peers and fellow travelers.
It is a significant upgrade from the standard black nylon computer bag that the IT guys seem to love to issue everyone. I carry it for work and travel and it delivers!!!
I had one person I was working with insist that I place it in his car trunk when on a call because he did not want to deal with the hassle of a police report when someone broke into the car to steal my SB briefcase!!
The toughest part of the choice to buy this bag for me was I wanted the suede lining but I did not want to wait the extra time to get my bag. Buy this briefcase today!!! Youwill not be disappointed.
Hi....Did I say in my recent review that I'd rate this item at 5 stars?
If I didn't, I meant to.
I've had my XL Classic Briefcase in Tobacco Brown for about a month now. This is a big piece of luggage as advertised! I'm 6'3" and 250# and this is about all I would want to carry on a regular basis. The weight of the bag itself is not an issue. The Cordura rolling bag that this Briefcase replaces actually weighs more than this XL Briefcase. The only issue is that you can pack a LOT of items in the Briefcase and might be tempted to overload it. With a full load of 17" laptop, power supply, cords, security cable, extra phone/charger, Franklin Classic day planner, 50 pages of files, and a small sundry bag, the weight is 24.5# which begins to wear on you in the long haul. Without the thick and heavy day planner, it could be snugged down to about 2/3 the thickness if needed with much reduced weight. I still have room for a change of clothes and toiletries and use this as an overnight bag. For everyday in-office use the Large Classic Briefcase might have been a better pick, but the XL gives me the flexibility of an overnight carry on bag.
Fits in overhead bins of large airplanes just fine, as noted in other reviews. If you are worried about being asked to gate check this bag, point out that other passengers are bringing far bulkier bags onboard and jamming them into the overhead bins, and that it can go under the seat in front of you if necessary.
This is a great bag that does everything Dave says that it should. Be prepared for admiring comments!
I bought a classic medium briefcase off of Dave's Deals at 15% off. I cannot find anything wrong except a three inch bubble on the inside cover pigskin just above the handle. It is so small an issue, and you would have to have the case open to see it. I have it loaded up with a 13 inch MacBook Pro, an iPad in the back pocket, a pocket size Daytimer, all kind of cables in a cable bag, also Dave's Deals. Pens, papers, the works, and there is still room to add things. It is not heavy at all for me. I know leather. The workmanship is excellent. You cannot buy a better case for the money. For this to be a Dave's Deal, they must have very high standards. This case is so worth it. Thank you Saddleback, I will be a returning customer.
Being 6'0, 180 lbs I was unsure of what size to get; ultimately based on the limited videos on youtube (at the time) I went ahead and ordered a large in chestnut. great choice! I love the snug fit for the medium notepad holder and the medium MacBook sleeve in the back compartment, lots of room for a kindle, passport, pens, and thumb drives in the remaining internal pockets and a generous front compartment for cables, cameras, etc.
It's a heavy bag, it's not a flaw - it's a characteristic. My advice, just because there's room, don't feel compelled to fill it with unnecessary items just for the sake of filling it. The space is there when you need it and things aren't just flopping around when it isn't packed to the brim.
Love my bag, and it's only getting better! Thanks SBL!
I just got back from a trip and my Large Classic Briefcase in Chestnut had arrived.
From the first moment I picked it up I was seriously impressed and convinced that the expensive purchase will be well worth it.
Here's another thing; this was one of Dave's Deals with a 15% discount, but I haven't found the flaw yet, the bag looks to be in tip-top condition.
My better-half tells me it sounds like I'm saddling-up to ride out whenever I'm using it!
Great product, really.
I originally purchased the large thin briefcase, and loved the look of it, but it isn't deep enough for my needs. I ordered the Medium Classic in Chestnut, and before it even arrived I thought I had made a mistake again. I watched many reviews saying the medium is too small, and "purse" like. Well, I can tell all of you that is not the case. I am 6'0, 250lbs, and if it doesn't look tiny on me, it wont look tiny on you. I can fit the medium notepad holder, a 13in MBP Retina in the 13in MB Air sleeve, and my 14in dell laptop in the back , and all the cables, chargers, pens, office needs in the front with room to spare for a medium bible with the closure.
If you have a 15in laptop or bigger, then you need the bigger bag, but if not, the medium will more than meet your needs. Unless you just like the look of carrying a large bag with you, the medium classic briefcase is perfect.
I originally ordered the Large Classic Briefcase, thinking it would be perfect for my law practice. When it was delivered, I tried putting an expandable folder inside (Redweld brand), and was dismayed to learn it would not fit. Dave's video doesn't even show the Extra Large size, but the screen just says something like it's good for litigators with huge case files. This led me to believe that the Large would be fine for normal use. Well, it is not. I would have appreciated a disclaimer on the size chart that says "expandable legal size folders do not fit in the Large case". So, now I am waiting on the delivery of the Extra Large. Oh, and of course I have to pay for return shipping. Had I known a normal legal folder would not fit, I would have ordered the Extra Large in the first place. That is disappointing as well. Once I take possession of a briefcase that actually can accept legal file folders, I will update this post as to how I like that case.
I was looking for an iPad sleeve and was thinking of the classic look. That soon brought me here. While I was browsing through, I saw the nice looking briefcase which can be converted into a backpack. Reminds me a lot of the Hobbit traveller. I could not decide to choose between Tobacco Brown or Chestnut. Later decided to get three items with three different colours as shown in the photo.
These would be a good companion as I embark on my PhD study adventure later this year. The smell of the leather is so nice. I'm very used to it from having chestnut leather shoes, wallet and carbon black leather belt.
I will soon order a small suitcase and small satchel. Many thanks to Tim and Jodie for helping me with the orders.
I've been drooling over this briefcase every since seeing someone carry one into a meeting. Yesterday an employee gave it to me as a gift.
I knew that I wanted one, but didn't know how much until I got my hands on it. Often, we fantasize about something and it's rarely as good in reality as it was in our minds - this was not one of those cases.
It's an incredible bag that gives me that timeless feel which merges into my MacBook Pro and iPad.
So, I shed my backpack of many years and migrate into manhood with the last briefcase I'll ever need.
I got the large size briefcase and it holds my 15inch MackBook Pro and all the other tech gadgets and items that I carry. I highly recommend it.
I bought this, because there are days when I needed a large briefcase. This bag is awesome, and has turned into my main bag for work and travel. It can hold a weekends worth of summer clothes, or a 14" laptop and a bunch of work files. My only slight regret is that I bought the medium and not the large, only because my laptop won't fit in it. It's OK though my old leather briefcase holds that one. The medium will work quite well though. Awesome bag Dave.
As promised, this is an update to my first review. I have received the extra large briefcase and it is quite nice. It accepts legal sized pocket folders and expandable folders nicely. Quality is extraordinary. The bag is heavy and large, so if you are looking for a lightweight bag, this is not the bag for you. But if you want a quality case that can handle literally anything you can put in it, this is your bag. Just remember, as I stated in the first review, be sure you are getting a size that can accept what you want to put in it. I recommend this extra large bag (but when it is full, it is very heavy).
Purchased the XL briefcase in chestnut through Dave's Deals, however like another review, I can't find a single thing wrong with it - it's just an outstanding piece of craftsmanship. Heavy, thick leather, tight stitching. Every part feels substantial and well-made. If I need to armor up for a knife fight, I'll just cut some arm holes.
In regards to size: Having read quite a few reviews, I was slightly concerned ordering the XL size, as I thought it might just be monstrously huge. It's not, it'????s perfect. Is it big? Yes, that's the point - however, for me, not too big. Having shifted over a laptop, file folders, sunglasses (in a big case) and charging cords, pens and notebooks, a thick book, a huge water container and some assorted junk from a backpack, I still have room for my gym clothes with space to spare on a daily basis. This is a good thing.
Since having it for a few days, I'??ve already received numerous compliments from co-workers (not to mention jealous looks and lots of how much was it? That things just going to get better over time!????), and it makes my office (and car) smell like delicious leather. The smell alone is worth the price.
The chestnut finish is beautiful. Exactly what I'????d hoped it would be. if you like the photos of the chestnut finish, you'll love the actual bag.
As I say to my girlfriend,???? it'????s worth spending the extra to get what you really want. You're already invested, make sure you don'????t have to purchase twice. If you try and save money by getting something "????close"???? to what you want, you won'????t be satisfied. You'll end up purchasing something else eventually, and thereby negate any savings you might have had initially. Plus, you likely still won't have what you wanted in the first place.
I enjoy purchasing quality, and I couldn??????t have made a better choice.
We live in the most skilled and sophisicated marketing society ever developed. Our every waking moments are filled with testimonials and promotions promising perfection and happiness if we would only purchase from them. Unfortunately and often, the quality we are seducted with isn't present in the real time product.
Dave and Saddleback is the real deal. Dave is honest, straighforward and he clearly is a man of integrity. The joy and pride he feels when he tells you about the extraordinary quality of his product is visceral.
I have searched worldwide off and on for two years for the perfect briefcase/messenger bag and could not find all the essential components, regardless of the cost. But I did with the large, chestnut briefcase from Saddleback. It is more impressive and quality laden then the pictures express.
It took two days for me to digest the price and make the purchase. When the bag arrived and I examined it, one of my first thoughts was " this briefcase is worth more than the asking price." It is a true deal at the current price.
I appreciate that Dave expresses his faith and the extra gift he places in the bag.
I am super happy to join the Sadddleback Leather Family. I got the XL Classic Briefcase in Black. I can't describe how amazingly impressed I am with this bag. All the positive you see on this review site is absolutely true. The Leather is super thick and substantial. The workmanship and built quality is steel strong and overall looks and feels like a quality product. The leather bags you see in retail stores and even most online and even those with designer names on them are only shiny looking on the surface but lack the QUALITY ingredients that Saddleback gives. This lacking in other leather products is so manufacturers can save cost and maximize profits. If you want a true quality leather briefcase that will get even more beautiful with age, this is the briefcase. The initial price is hard to swallow but when you hold the bag in your hands, every penny feels well worth the cost. The Briefcase especially in XL is heavy but only because that's what real, thick, cowhide leather is ..if you want a light weight product, there is plenty of "leather" spray on and imitations out there. In the end, it's true that you get what you pay for.
Thanks for the fantastic, delicious, well-built Leather, Dave .. I love the personal and family touch you have injected into your products, customer service and your company. Keep up the superb standards !!
Best wishes from your neighbour up North :)
Just Quality and Pure Quality !! Unbelievable Leather !!
I'm a history teacher with fantasies of being Indiana Jones. I waited about five years until I had enough money to get the large dark coffee briefcase, and it was worth the wait. The bag is great for going on hikes and for travelling, but it looks perfect and professorial in the classroom too.
I've already got about five students who want to buy one, and I get compliments on the bag just about every time I go out.
The weight of the bag isn't a problem for me; it adds to the classic charm. I converted it into a backpack last week and hiked with it up Sleeping Bear Dunes in Michigan. It was comfortable and not a bit too heavy.
I can't wait for it to get scuffed and worn in.