One of the original Billingham series 335 camera bags.
My camera bag has jumped up & down asking for its picture to be taken 🙂
This bag is at least 28 years old and still going strong – other than a little leather cream and brushing dirt away, it has not needed and still does not need any repairs: maybe the brass needs a clean but that’s probably going a bit far !
One of the best investments I have ever made; it will probably see me out.
They are rather expensive as camera bags go, but as the saying indicates “you get what you pay for” and with 28 years of use, it is the cheapest bag I have ever owned.
It has seen rain, snow, sandstorms and been in & out of more Land rovers than I care to remember, planes & at least one Helicopter (never a nice experience at the best of times) with all my gear safe & sound.
There…… now maybe it will shut-up & just go back to being a silent container for my precious camera gear.
P.S no velcro or plastic (one makes a noise & the other goes brittle in the sun!) both of which are almost de rigueur on things today.
10 thoughts on “My Billingham 335 camera bag.”
I have a very similar model as well, it is a bit short of 3 years old and still looks quite new though it has seen a lot of miles in that short time. It is sitting right next to me expecting some airtime as well, so its travels include helicopters (commercial and a couple of rides with the coast guard too), boats (usually inside another waterproof bag), trucks, airplanes (as hand luggage), cars, and even a bike ride or two. I am pleased to hear yours has reached such a venerable age; if mine lasts that long it will see me out!
I have a larger lowepro back pack with supposedly waterproof zippers and a rain cover that comes out. It is quite comfortable and good for a lot more gear, but I don’t like it much. And the waterseal strip on the zippers pulled away within weeks.
In the venerable department, I have a pale blue pelican case that I bought in 1982. I have used it as a seat in leaking and pounding zodiacs for months on end, and it has had many helicopter rides and plane journeys, including one just a few weeks ago up the coast. It is my more extreme conditions case, and the only thing wrong is that the catches have become a bit loose from so many opening and closing clicks when it was my primary field case. It does have a safety catch which I use now all the time to prevent it falling open, but otherwise is still totally serviceable.Perhaps it deserves a blog post out of respect for an elder.
Fortunately these bags do not seem to have been compromised when it comes to quality; so many products have become shadows of their former selves.
Now the Pelican case is an example of a quality product becoming better over the years, at least the ones I have seen recently. Used several while I was working for a certain well known mountain rescue team in UK.
I agree about the Pelican case – I have used many at work over the years and they are definitely much better than my venerable old blue – far better catches, easier operation of air pressure vents, more robust construction, better attachment for straps, better locking systems and a huge range of sizes and shapes. Still, my one is totally serviceable, is still air and water tight and works just fine for protecting cameras from the trials of field work and abuse of baggage handlers.
I have always liked those Billingham bags…However, I was given a Domke back in 1995 and it has served me pretty well. I do like the way yours has aged.
I must admit I was probably never going for any other manufacture. I already had one of the original fly fishing bags that they made in the early days.
I like the brass & leather fittings and it doesn’t shout camera bag.
I agree, yours is a good looking bag.
Great bag. Bought one last year, hoping it too will last as long as yours!
Good decision Alan, I am sure you will not regret it.
looks adventurous 🙂
It’s had its fair share over the years.