New Gear

Not just hydration, but COLD hydration!

All summer, it was HOT here. As in record breaking hot at times. Hot and dry. So dry we broke the state record of acres burning in wildfires, a record set in 2004.

If I had 3 words to describe this summer, they’d be hot, dry, and smokey.

Its ironic that I only finally get this new item now, in the cool fall after the heat and actually after a Long record breaking wet season as well.

Thus is the irony of life!

I’d been wanting a vacuum insulated water bottle for a long time after a buddy got one early this summer. It’s been really annoying going out all day and my water gets warm, when his stayed cold and iced. I can put ice in the bottles I usually carry, but the sweating and condensation is epically annoying.

Unfortunately a lot of these bottles are Really expensive… Took me a while to find something I liked, that I can afford.

Stumbled upon this at wally world this week. Tal Hydration Ranger Pro;

[IMG]

It is stainless steel, vacuum insulated, copper lined in the vacuum area, (I wondered what good that does, turns out according to another brands advertising literature, that its supposed to conduct heat transfer more efficiently.).

Large top opening for filling/ice, and a nice caped drinking opening that is amazingly similar to my CamelBak Chute, my favorite water bottle.

Not sure if its paint or powder coat, but it seems thick, time will tell how durable it is.

Also similar to the Chute is the carry loop, but this one is bigger(great) and fantastically, its hinged, and folds out of the way making it much narrower when not hanging it. Also allows it to hang fully vertical not angled.

[IMG]

My only complaint so far is how tall this sucker is… I wanted a liter/32oz. bottle. Astoundingly They don’t make one!

They do a 26oz and a 40oz . This is the 40. They are all bigger than equal volume uninsulated bottles, obviously, but these things are overly tall for their diameter…

I’m actually guessing this is on purpose, so that they fit, for diameter, in water bottle pouches, and automotive(etc) cup holders..

The 26 was already taller than I’d want, but less capacity than I need (want)… So I bit the bullet and I opted for the 40. Will probably get used to it fast but so far its a little intimidating to pack/carry.

One nice thing about 40oz, and maybe this was their idea, is that you can get a full 32oz drink in it, and have room for ice.

[IMG]

The claim is 24 hours cold, 12 hours hot… we shall see.

Honestly I’ll be Happy if I get half those times. But some somewhat scientific(timed anyway) tests will be done. (eventually… 😉 )

So far I’ve used it a grand total of once, and it had my tea as icy as it started, more or less, for 4 or 5 hours.

So far, I’m extremely happy. Especially since it only cost me $17. 🙂

Will try to do a usage review after a week of two, we’ll see how its holding up.

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Categories: Alaska-Life, Bottles, Camping gear, EDC, Field gear, Food, Food Gear, Hydration, New Gear, Summertime, weather and seasons | 1 Comment

EDC Update Summer 2019

Been a LOT going on this summer, and I do have things to post, but no time to do it. Lots of catch up posts this fall probably.

Until then, a few pocket dump pics to catch up that archive, and a few pics of other things thrown in, sort of a teaser. 🙂

Categories: Adventures, Alaska-Life, Daily-cary-log, EDC, Field gear, knives, Lighters, Multitools, New Gear, Outdoors, Pocket knives, Summertime

All chained up.

Rearranged and consolidated pocket watch chains yesterday. I only need two, one for the watch and one for the knife on my double Albert setup.

Had one, a bronze one already setup for that. Added the new black chrome one as the second. This setup with a Nightize S-biner hanger works great.

The biner fits over the snaps on my leather vest. Just snap a snap through the big biner, and it dissappears, but holds the chain ends giving the single or double prince albert chain attachment point.

Then cut, splice and reassembly, netted me a bracelet, which I wore all day, and really liked. Simple and classy-ish, but didn’t drive me batty. Two main strands with a third linking them.


Then the left overs got me a neck chain–which I have no idea what I’ll do with– yet.

And two big clasped utility/watch chains, which I also have no current use for… I’ll think of something.

If you look close the bracelet has 3 different chain sizes/styles, the necklace 2, and both utility chains are different…

I actually had a lot of fun doing these! The opening and closing of the rings and links was a bit tedious, but still fun.

Categories: Customized, Decorating, EDC, Fabrication, Jewelry, key-chains, Modifications, New Gear, Pocket Watches, Re-purpose, Recycle, Repurpose, Watches

Custom ice fishing bucket seat.

When out last Saturday I wanted to travel lighter, leave my folding chair and fish cooler behind, go with a bucket seat. But there was no way in hell I was going shopping on black Friday!

Some old foam, a chunk of naugahide, and some scrap lumber in the shop, couple hours and I made me a hinged, padded, bucket seat, that doubles as a fish carrier.

It works! 😉

Only downside I’ve found is no backrest for 4 hours sucks 😉 and it sliddes a little on the ice. Second trip out with it yesterday and I put it in a milk crate, for traction. Works good, adds some stability and places to hang things.

Categories: Custom, custom-made-tools, Fabrication, Field gear, Fishing, GetOutdoors, Ice Fishing, Improviser, Modifications, New Gear, Re-purpose, Repurpose

Ice fishing report, November 24th, 2018

Got out to Birch Lake the first time this season last Saturday, I didn’t get anything but a buddy and his kids did great. I didn’t care I got skunked, I got all the fun I needed watching those kids(7 and 9)catch their first cold fish (and I think first fish ever)!!

Most of those are rainbow trout, a couple small silver salmon. They could have limited out, but put a lot of little ones back.

I had Something about twice that size on the line once, as did my buddy… Bugger got off just shy of the ice both times, stayed just long enough for us to see him each time! Bloody teaser!

Getting ready to hit another favorite spot this coming Saturday. About 13″ of ice according to F&G ice reports, up from the 8″ last week. Usually a lot more by this time of year but we’ve had the mildest fall/winter so far that I can remember in 25 years..

He got a new auger, one of those gear boxed suckers that goes on a cordless drill (works phenomenally! ).

They wanted to give me something as a thanks for helping out with some stuff last month, so they gave me his gas auger. Absolutely floored me!

8″auger, 43cc motor, Eskimo, came with an extension bar too.

I’ve been ice fishing 3 or 4 years now and have Never had an auger, even a hand one or even a ice chisel! Always go with someone that has gear, or use a hole already open that someone’s vacated, ask a favor of someone to drill me one etc.

Big game changer for me, really opens up where and when I can go now!

Sizing up to be a good season. Got a couple gear mods to make posts for soon, and some other new gear too.

Should be back with another trip report in a couple days, hopefully with at least one fish of my own this time!

Categories: Adventures, Alaska-Life, Backcountry, Field gear, Fishing, GetOutdoors, Good Friends, Good Times, Ice Fishing, New Gear, Outdoors, Winter

Denim case for a folding buck saw.

When taking my buck saw out for some work yesterday, I remembered I was going to make a case for it from a canvas painters tarp I’d gotten.
I’d cut up a pair of old jeans for making char cloth a few weeks ago, had a lot left on hand, had it out for another idea yesterday, so it was on hand.
Liked the idea of denim better than the canvas tarp.
Legs are great lengths of material, but a bit short on that pair I cut up because of worn cuffs and where I cut them before.
Had a brand new pair I can’t wear (bought 2 years ago when losing weight fast, could almost get into them. Got hurt and gained weight last winter, I garantee I can’t get into them now). So that’s how I ended up with a fancy, clean, spanking new denim saw case!
Cut a leg off, split about 1/3 and a taper off one side, sewed up what was left.
By hand. “Cheated” to get it straight and even. Pinned the edge/seam allowance where I wanted it, then clamped it up in my 2′ long wood workers vise on the bench, held just below the stich line. Think of it as a Loooonnng stitching pony like used for leather work. Worked a real treat!

Not the nicest stitches in the world, but they work!
Voila, a bag!
Sewed the old top end shut to form the bottom, leaving the hemmed cuff end as my new top. Figured the wide hem to be hollow, can run a draw cord through it. Forgot to do it before stitching the side…
1/16″ brass rod, loop bent in end to pull the 550 cord, bent in a loop, and I fished it through the hem. Little tight at the existing side seam, but I got it with come cutting fishing and finagling the rod through!
Need it longer but it’s (gasp!) the only 550 I had on hand. I’ll use it to pull a longer chuck through later. 🙂
Messy stitches to re tack down the hem ends where I cut it..
I wanted more length past the saw for fold over, but 28″ inseams don’t offer much over a 24″ saw… 😉 It works though!
With the saw in it;

Categories: Adventure Metal Works, Camping, Camping gear, Custom, custom-made-tools, Fabrication, Field gear, Improviser, MacGyver, Modifications, New Gear, Re-purpose, Recycle, Repurpose, Saws, Scrounging, Sewing, Soft Goods, wood processing, Woods tools

Selective hearing protection? Alpine MotoSafe ear plugs, part 1.

One more new item, that came in yesterday, arrived all the way from the Netherlands. (Couldn’t find a stateside dealer that had the model I wanted, so I ordered direct from the manufacturer. Could actually only find two dealers in the USA anyway! )
As part of my healthy hearing concept, along with adding the face shield onto my motorcycle helmet, I started looking for better, more active hearing protection.
The problem with foam ear plugs is the constant outward pressure they use to seal, it’s uncomfortable and makes my ears sore after a days commute both always.
But I didn’t want to jump in and invest in the full custom molded ear plugs.
And both styles tend to be full sound suppression, so you end up sealed off from your surroundings, with all sound deadened. There are rubber plugs that only filter out harmful sound, leaving conversation or traffic hearable, but I’ve never found rubber plugs that seal worth a damn, or that aren’t like the foam, and too tight. (For instance ear buds tend to drive me nuts and make my ears sore).
Anything that has custom molding and also let’s through lower conversation type sound frequencies are really spendy.
Then I found a half way product;

https://www.alpinehearingprotection.com/product-category/motorcycle/

They are a sound filter, supposedly they cut the frequency of wind noise, but allow traffic and conversation sounds through. Also, the rubber tips are semi-custom forming, in a thermo form rubber; Every time you insert them, your body heat softens them and they custom fit to your ear canal, sealing without outward pressure.

I figured why not, if they work then great, if not, then I’m only out around $20… A risk that I thought was worth it.
They have several variations for different activities, and two specifically for motorcycle riding. A “Tour” version, and a “Race” version that is a little stronger/higher decibel rated. I opted for the race version. At only a few decibels difference, I figured if they work as advertised to cut only wind noise, and leave other sounds, I still wanted as much protection as possible.
So far, in limited fit tests I find them a LOT more comfortable than foam plugs, and more than a lot of rubber plugs and ear buds I’ve had too. I won’t say they “disappear” to where I don’t know I’m wearing them, but I’ve only had them I for 5 to 10 minutes so far.
Have not gad a chance to ride with them yet.
Bug I can say that they let in conversation level sounds really well, and actually without loud sounds, seem like they do very little. But they did cut out the sound of my truck exhaust more than they cut out talking.. Not a lot more, but more.
I’m reserving and conclusions for after I test them with the noise they’re made for; wind.
They come with a little zipper pouch for carrying, and I sprung the few dollars for a hard key chain style carry case, and a safety cord that keeps them tethered together.

My only complaint so far is that the insertion tool they come with, a little plastic thing that’s supposed to grip the plug, and you use it as a handle to insert them, then turn them slightly in your ear to help them seal; It doesn’t snap onto the plugs, it’s far too big, and thus can’t be used… So I can’t really grip them to rotate them upon insertion.
Not sure how much, or if this effects how they seal/work. Will find out either way how they work though, as soon as I can.
Will let y’all know how it goes. 🙂
Categories: Adventures, ATV, ATVing, Field gear, Motorcycles, New Gear, Preparedness, Riding, Vehicles

Glasses!

N

ew gear!
A buddy gave me some cash for my birthday, and after a little deliberation, I went for getting myself something I’ve needed for a while now with part of if it.

Yup, I g

ot new sunglasses

!

You might recall that my good pair got broke while hunting last September.

Been wanting, but putting off new ones since then. But the last couple months as its gotten brighter and brighter coming out of winter, I’ve really needed some.

Also needed new clear safety glasses for work, and new shooting glasses…
So I killed 3 birds with one stone;
5 interchangeable lenses! Impact safety rated for work and shooting, 99.9% UVA and UVB blocking.
I figured I can only do one of the three activities/concepts at once, so a fast lense change every now and then wouldn’t hurt, could be the best way to go.

Turns out it really is a fast easy change too!

They’re not sold as polarized , but so far the copper and smoke lenses both cut glare like they are!
Came with keeper cord, a micro fiber bag for carrying one separate lens, a nifty 5 slot micro fibre/plush sleeve that separates the lenses, 5 lenses in smoke, copper, orange, yellow and clear, and a neoprene case for all of it.

To me that was a steal for $32 (local price; Online you can find them as low as $19.99, but before shipping. ) especially since it is 1/5 what replacing the last ones could cost IF I could find a pair (discontinued model).

It’s even cheaper than the last safety/sun glasses I had, a smoke black pair from 3M, they were $45. They lasted me about 4, naybe 5 years, and are still useable, but some of the marks on thd lenses are getting pretty annoying.

They’ve been backups in my truck for a while, but now in my bike bag, a last ditch pair.

Those by 3M are what I was going after to get again, when I found the Radians.

Anyway;

Here are the frames sans lenses, and then changed to the smoke from the copper shown above. Only takes maybe 45 seconds, a minute max to swap them.

Adjustable temple/earpiece lengths and soft bridgr pads, plus super light weight= really comfortable.

So far I’m using the smoke for general wear, and changing to the copper, which is a deep orange/amber with a pink tint, for riding the bike. After a few minute my eyes adjust and take out the pink tint, then the amber does like other brown/amber glasses I’ve had; Hightens contrast and boosts depth perception.

Only time will tell how the other colors will work but so far I’m really enjoying them.

Categories: EDC, Field gear, GetOutdoors, New Gear, Summertime, Sunglasses

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