Ryker is a designated Leica bag, simple as that.
When we first encountered the Leica M6 film camera, we fell in love with the classic design and the nostalgic history background, the same reason we are so obsessed with vintage Panerai and Rolex watches.
Over the years we added the digital Leica M9 and the Leica M240 to our collection, and amazingly these new generation cameras still possesses the same "Leica spirit": traditional and intuitive operating mechanism, manual focusing, unquestionably elegant design... owning and shooting Leica M is truly a very "intimate" experience, users overcome the challenges of manual focusing, just to gain a nostalgic sense of oneness between man and machine, somewhat resonating with the feeling of operating an analog manual vinyl record player.
A Leica, being what it is, deserves a specially made bag that authentically carries its appeals and design language.
To make the Ryker worthy of the classic tradition, we carefully scrutinize the bag's structure design, to avoid loosing a sense of overall aesthetic integrity in favor of specific functional needs.
We started out with a traditional "satchel" style, and added a challenging hand-folded "edge rim" padding, to create a unique visual effect: a camera bag that "doesn't look like a camera bag". Others will see Ryker users as owning an subtly elegant bag, the keywords that pop out should be "quality" and "classical" rather than "utilitarian" and "modern".
When we were prototyping the Ryker bag, we deliberately discarded any use of metal tuck-clasps. The front flap is the most frequently maneuvered part of the bag, and we don't want to repeatedly go through the harsh sound of metal scuffing against each other.
We created a horizontal fastening strap to tuck the leather flap under, while using the hidden magnets to secure the flap.
To use the leather flap more conveniently, simply let it fall and have the magnetic force of the flap lock it in place. That way you have a large surface of high quality leather flap, with refined details that express the dedication of our leather craft.
Even since its release in 2010, Ryker has underwent various upgrades per feedback from professional photographers worldwide, and the most prominent enhancement is the addition of "zippered inner flap" in 2014.
This is considered a "genius idea" by photography gear reviewer Steve Huff at www.stevehuffphoto.com (Ryker is also Steve's NO.1 favorite camera bag to date) for using a simple design to accommodate photographer's real life considerations, such as rain / snow / sand impacts out in the wilderness, and the possibility of gear tumbling out when a bag tips over.
With zippered flap, we can offer protection for the loaded gear, but when we need to quickly access the contents, we can yank the flap via the zipper opening with one hand, and the bronze zipper teeth will detach fluently.
The smooth maneuvering is hard to find in common plastic zippers. Such sensual zipping experience is achieved through countless trial and error by WOTANCRAFT workshop, to finally find the right combination of zipper size, interval and material.
We designed the Ryker to fit our own Leica camera, so we do empathize with some Leica shooter's preference of having a zipperless camera bag, to avoid gear scuffing.
Our solution to such consideration is having a layer of "rim wrapping" at the inner side of the zippers, and have such wrapping capable of standing upwards.
This way, the camera or gear will not get on contact with zipper tooth easily, when entering or exiting the bag. We've also chosen smaller bronze zipper teeth with rounder edges, so that even when they come to contact with gear, it will be harder to scuff.
With the zippered flap, we can better ensure that the photography image results our Leica camera will not be affected by the elements and accidental crashes, which is what matters to us the most.
We've included an invert zipper pull, to facilitate the zipper head from maneuvering across the angled edges of the bag.
Front open pocket for holding lens cap, plus a zippered pocket to hold batteries, wallet, cellphone and keys.
The back zippered pocket facilitates the needs of working photographers, who like a designated space to quickly access their field notes and pen.
Ryker shoulder strap is made of thick vegetable tanned cowhide, two layers stitching back to back for maximum durability, with flexible shoulder pad.
The shoulder pad has multiple pressure-alleviating foam sewed in, with segment stitching that divides the pad into 4 parts, so that when the strap is curved the segments will not be all creased and wrinkled.
These small details shown in the shoulder strap reveals how seriously WOTANCRAFT take the craftsmanship, making sure everything looks and works perfect.
The "depth" of the Ryker inner space is designed to fit the "height" of the Leica M camera, making it easy to insert the camera whether horizontally or vertically.
Every Ryker bag includes 2 large and 1 small padded dividers, so that one can arrange their gear fitting with more flexibility.
When loading gear such as the Sony A7 / A9 with the top protruding viewfinder, or an APS-C DSLR camera, the bag will be stuffed and protrude a bit, so we suggest placing the camera at the center of the bag, have the lenses / accessories at the left and right side, so that the flap zipper closes easier.
The inner compartment pocket fits an iPad, with sewed in padding to protect the tablet from clashing with the camera gear.
The camouflage version Ryker uses Italian vegetable tanned leather, one can tell from the texture gloss that this leather article is high quality, only oil enriched leather can reveal such subtle sheen, common leather with spray painted sheen simply can't match it.
This leather adapts the traditional "pure aniline dye", minimizing the after-treatment to better preserve a delicate hand feel.
When the aniline leather is bent, the grease between the leather fibers get pushed around, causing the surface to exhibit color differences and creases, which adds to the vintage look of the leather.
The bottom leather accent and the leather straps use another brand of plain surface vegetable tanned cowhide. The surface of such leather will bring out the grease essence with repeated usage, which "ages" beautifully.
The smooth texture of the leather surface feels very much like waxed pull-up leather, but is less likely to develop scratch marks. It is an elegant yet durable material.
Another unique feature on this leather accent is that there's a "sweet scent" embedded within. This is due to the vegetable agents used in the tanning process, which includes Quebracho, Chestnut and Acacia.
The cost for such treatment is definitely higher, but when the result presents itself to us straight from the tannery, we are so impressed with the smoothness, tenacity and scent, we all felt that: "this leather is definitely going on the Ryker bag!"
To deliver the right sense of texture quality, we've implemented cotton velveteen in the interior lining of the Ryker bag. The hand feel is much smoother than usual cotton canvas fabric, the visual aesthetics is also more layered, calling to our inner desires for quality.
On top of that, WOTANCRAFT knew from our camera bag making history that to build a reliable heavy duty bag, the generic poly or cotton based thread simply wouldn't hold.
After years of trial and error, we've adapted the "Bonded Nylon" thread, a thread type based off the ultra tough Nylon 6.6 fiber with protective coating, capable of sustaining chemical and elemental corrosion, and commonly used on leather products that needs to sustain use and abuse, such as leather boots or saddles.
We make all our bags into workhorse bags, welcoming the challenge of various usage scenarios.
Ryker represents the utmost endeavor of WOTAN-CRAFTSMANSHIP, with sophisticated understanding of user habits that built into simple and smart designs, constructed with materials that reflect WOTANCRAFT's aesthetic preference.
For every aspect on a Leica M camera that appeals to your sensitivity, Ryker delivers to the same extent, simple as that.
Dimensions (W x D x H)
28.5 x 12 x 21 cm
± 1.2 kg
vegetable tanned cowhide leather
cotton based velveteen lining
high-strength zinc alloy & brass hardware
bronze YKK Zippers with rustproof coating
high-density EVA foam padding
main bag x1
padded dividers (small) x1
padded dividers (large) x2
detachable leather shoulder strap (with shoulder pad) x1
cotton dustproof bag x1