When I first moved to San Francisco, I had to spend four hours at the old Transbay Terminal because the Greyhound I was on became an express somewhere in the middle of the country without me knowing it and I had arrived 12 hours before my new roommate was expecting me. This being the days before me or any of my friends had cell phones, I was stuck, held captive by my own lack of planning and the ever archaic location-based landline system. During the four hours at what I considered at the time to be one of the sketchiest places on Earth, I noticed a large number of rough-hewn, street-punk looking people, guys mostly, whizzing by on fixed-gear bicycles with giant bags strapped to their backs.
Having always been one of those guys with some sort of army-surplus bag on my back, I was immediately interested in this new-to-me urban aesthetic. Shortly after settling into my new big-city life, I began the quest for one of those big, burly bags I’d seen on the bike messengers on my first day in San Francisco. It took months to figure out which one I wanted, and several more in order for me to be able to afford it.
This bag was massive, heavy Denier ballistic nylon on the outside, lined with a waterproof membrane to protect its contents from the guaranteed wet months of San Francisco winters, and, best of all, this commodious carry-all felt as if it, and, by virtue of possessing it, I, was bulletproof. All of this came flooding back to me within seconds of laying hands on The Shed messenger bag from Mission Workshop. Getting acquainted with The Shed was like getting reacquainted with an old friend.
Like that first messenger bag I got oh-so-many-years-ago, The Shed is massive. According to Mission Workshop it has a volume of 2150 cubic inches, or 35 litres. To make this a bit more tangible, think of this volumetric measurement in terms of rice. With the average weight of rice being approximately one kilo per litre, this bag will hold 35 of them - that’s 77 pounds!!! Though a load so heavy would be no fun to haul around, I have no doubt that this bag could handle it, for it is built like a fortress.
In regard to build quality, it would be hard to imagine making an improvement on The Shed. Every seam is perfect. The waterproof liner is smooth all the way around with no gaps or bubbles. The reversible strap is is made from 5 bar webbing (think: seat belt), and the fixed shoulder pad is a densely cushioned affair with a breathable tricot face instead of rubber so the bag can move without taking your shirt with it. Seriously, every detail on this bag was thoroughly sorted before it went into production.
Keep in mind, all this burliness does make for a somewhat heavy bag. The Shed weighs in at 3.5 pounds, but it is a very big bag, so it’s not surprising. In fact, it is so big that I had to stuff two full-size bed pillows in it in order to make it stand up and look full. Big bag.
To check out The Shed or one of its smaller relatives you have two options:
1. Visit the San Francisco flagship store at 40 Rondel Place in the heart of the Mission; Open Monday through Saturday 10:30am to 6:30pm, Sunday 12:00pm to 6:30pm - phone: 415-864-7225
2. Click this: www.http://missionworkshop.com/