If you didn’t see the intro to this project, check out Part 1. Briefly, I want to make this:

Now that I’ve categorized all the items for my travel needs, I need to measure the dimensions to determine the smallest travel case I can purchase.

Here’s that list of items again.

4 pairs of socks
4 T-shirts
4 pairs of boxer shorts
1 dress shirt
1 Toiletry Bag
2 pairs of pants
1 pair of workout/sleeping pants/shorts

1 Phone charger
1 set of keys
1 book, which I probably won’t read
1 winter hat & 1 pair of gloves for colder seasons/locales
1 swimsuit for warmer seasons/locales

Out comes the measuring tape. Who’s ready to see picture of my socks??

(note: my apologies for the unreadable numbers on the tape measure. The close up resolution on my camera is probably worse than the one on your phone. So I put the dimensions on there (using Inkscape) for clarity’s sake. Click on the picture if you want to enlarge. For some strange reason.)

Here are the dimensions in table form.

Length (inches) Width (inches) Depth (inches) # Volume (in3)
4 boxer shorts 6 3 2 4 144
4 pairs of socks 8 2 3 4 192
4 T-shirts 11 8 1.5 4 528
1 dress shirt 11 9 4 1 396
1 Toiletry Bag 9 5 4 1 180
2 pairs of pants 11 11 2 2 484
1 pair of workout/sleeping pants/shorts 11 5 4 1 220
1 Phone charger 3 2 2 1 12
1 set of keys 2 1 1 1 2
1 book, which I probably won’t read 6 9 2 1 108
1 winter hat & 1 pair of gloves for colder seasons/localesor, 1 swimsuit for warmer seasons/locales 8 4 4 1 128
Total volume 2396

So if I had the ability to mash all my objects up into a perfect rectangular prism, I would require 2396 cubic inches. This begs some additional questions:

  • How much is 2396 cubic inches? I have no idea what that looks like. Is that a lot? That sounds like a lot.
  • You can’t just mash everything up. Won’t we need a bit extra space to organize it all?

The answer to the first question is found like this. One cubic foot is:

So my stuff is this many cubic feet.

If you’ll remember from Part 1, the United Airlines website lists the maximum dimensions of carry-on luggage as 9″ x 14″ x 22″. Or,

At this point, I’d like to reiterate my skepticism over those listed dimensions. Let’s address that skepticism right here with a suitcase I’ve taken as a carry-on before, that I suspect exceeds those listed dimensions. Here’s my suitcase that I’m always able to carry on.

Hmm. So I need a suitcase that’s at least 1.4 cubic feet for my stuff (but probably more), but probably smaller than 1.875 cubic feet. That seems like a pretty tight range. Moreover, I’ll probably need more than 1.4 cubic feet based on my irregularly shaped objects. I’ll address this is Part 3, in which I brush off my Tetris style stacking skills. Stay tuned!

Until then, please enjoy this adorable video of my cat emerging from my suitcase. She does not count as carry-on luggage (she does, however, dramatically improve this blog’s SEO).

One thought on “‘Readymade’ Suitcase Project (Part 2)

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