Timbuk2 Custom Messenger

I’ve been a long time fan of the Timbuk2 range of messenger bags.

Timbuk2 hails from San Francisco, with both design and manufacturing being done in its Mission neighbourhood store, which I had the chance to visit back in January. One of the coolest features Timbuk2 have is that they will either repair a bag during its life or offer you a trade-in against a new one, my trusty D-Lux had some issues with the velcro fastening coming away from the body, and this was replaced for I think $15, and looks as good as is it always did.

Over the years have probably purchased 10 or more but never felt comfortable spending the $150 on one of their custom bags until this month when a 30% voucher popped into my mailbox. It was fate I had to make that purchase.

I’ve just redone the branding on the company, and have new colours for logos and artwork, so the natural choice was to match up those colours, on-screen comparisons on multiple screens showed that the orange I could get was roughly comparable to the orange in my logo.

I ordered Cordura Nylon Orange and Carbon, which I thought looked great on-screen, I checked it out on several screens just to make sure I had the correct colours, and here’s the preview generated:

Well after a 2 week wait and £33.00 fee from UPS the bag arrived. I knew as soon as I opened the plastic it didn’t seem quite right

To the eye its plain to see that there was a problem, with colours not matching at all. I figured Timbuk2 were a reputable company, so i’d call them and make enquiries to see what could be done, this is where the fun began, after speaking with their customer services guys it was made clear i would have to take photos email them over and wait up to 3 days for a response. So out came the camera and said email sent.

3 days later the following response came through:

Roman replied

Nov 15, 12:17pm

Hey Rob,

Thank you for your feedback on the new bag as it compares to your old ones. It is due to these valuable nuggets of user experience, so gracefully shared us, that we are able to design and redesign bags that hold up to the test of time and ultimately rock.

All of the design changes you are seeing are due to customer feedback. The fabric is tougher, the bag lighter, and the strap softer and more pliable. All of these changes have been received quite favorably and we have not seen bags not lasting as long as the older designs.

Looking at your order and the picture you sent it, it appears that we made you the bag in the colors you picked out on the customizer; so rest assured that you got the bag you ordered. Given that it is a custom made to order bag, we would not be able to accept a return on it.

Just let us know if there’s anything else I can help with or answer,

Roman @ Timbuk2 Customer Team

I decided a quick telephone call would make the issue clear, as luck would have it Roman answered the call, thats positive I think, so try and explain my issue. Well it would appear “computer says no” is the only response Roman knows, apparently I ordered those colours perhaps I could look at the bag in different lights as the colours I got were the ones I ordered. We went through this circle for about 10 minutes and I eventually gave up as clearly the customer is wrong in this instance.

The bag I bought has all the features I wanted from the bag, the material feels a little cheaper than the last few I’ve purchased, it has all the right pockets, but Timbuk’s attitude that I am the one in the wrong has made my mind up that I won’t be buying their products in the future. 

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