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Sunday, November 10, 2013

HeadHardHat's Review of the SCOTTEVEST - Travel Vest

SCOTTEVEST - For The Trip Of Your Life

The company Scottevest designs and manufactures a full line of clothing with a conduit system, specialized pockets and compartments, to manage and control wires of electronic devices. 

Specializing in a brand known as TEC for Technology Enabled Clothing which in laymen's terms means their clothing is made for comfortably holding a multitude of gadges and gizmos.


Basic Overview

I tried out their Travel Vest for over a month and in the following review will give a good overview of the product itself and it's usability for a geocacher. So let's start with the basics.
The travel vest comes in three basic colors Black, Khaki and Navy. I personally chose the Khaki to be more visible out on the trails. Their sizes go from Small to 3x which I found to be very nice. Not many specialty stores carry clothes for larger folk like myself. The vest when you pick it up is very light weight. I wore it everywhere for a month and found it to be warm enough with a polo shirt underneith during the cool fall days and yet not too warm when the temps were in the low to mid 70's(F). 


Made For Carrying Stuff

One of the main staples of a geocacher is his or her geocaching pack. Inside is all sorts of needed tools of the trade. For example a flashlight, multi-tool, GPSr, Smartphone, retrieving tools, pens, and the like. The pack can be from the size of a small bag to a full sized backpack. It is necessary because of all the different situations a geocacher faces when out geocaching. The pack in question can be a bit of a pain carrying around. The SCOTTEVEST can simplify a geocacher's predicament by allowing them to carry all of their electronic devices and many of their geocaching tools all in one easy to access spot. I truly believe this travel vest will help many geocachers when dealing with simple park and grabs to several hours out on the trail. So lets take a closer look at this  Technology Enabled Clothing.


HeadHardHat Just Before Heading Out Geocaching




















Pockets Galore

If you are like me when geocaching you may have a device or two that you use. There is my iPad, Smartphone, GPSr unit just for starts. The Travel Vest has a dedicated pocket for your each of this plus your iPod, eyeglasses, car keys, digital camera plus SD card, passport, bluetooth earpiece, earbuds and change just to name some of them. Some of the cool niceties was an elastic band with a softcloth for cleaning your glasses, elastic band and clip for your car keys, an entire networked system to invisibly integrate your iPod earpod wires directly into the vest. a clear touch pocket so you can keep your phone safe and still see and touch the screen from inside the vest.

So How Did It Actually Do?

If you have read other reviews that I have done with products you know that I shoot from the hip and tell it exactly how I had used it. This will be no different.
Here are my results after continual using the Travel Vest for a month.

Because the vest is so light my first thoughts were I thought the vest would not do well with wear and tear. After a month of use including while out geocaching I did not see any wear except I feel the Velcro that keeps the Clear Touch Pocket that I kept my smart phone in may not last to the three month mark. It warped into a 'U' shape after a while and I would suspect it giving over time. 

When it comes to weight distribution with all the "stuff" inside. Scottevest boasts a "Weight Management System" which with such a light weight piece of clothing there is not much to really work with. When I had my iPad2  in the left pocket and my smartphone and GPSr unit in the pockets on the right side of the vest there was a lot of noticeable weight on the back of my neck near the collar. Not enough to be a show stopper but common sense will dictate that all that weight has to go somewhere and if you were going on all day hike, this may be a factor for you. On the flip side if you didn't have a heavy tablet like the iPad2 on such a hike and had the smartphone on one side and the GPSr on the other it would not even be a factor. In fact when I go to lunch being able to keep my iPad hidden in my vest is a very nice feature. 

Out in the field I found having 50% of my pack items in the vest was a good fit. Not too much weight and yet all of my most used tools had easy access and I did not have to go digging through my pack searching for particular items. Everything had its own place and more importantly to me, the outside of the vest was not all bulked out and looking like I was carrying a lot of stuff. I found this to be very handy.

Dislikes:

There only a couple of things that basically annoyed me about the Travel Vest. They are not show-stoppers but worth noting.

  • If you do try using a water bottle in the vest pocket that is cold, there is nothing waterproof enough to guard against water condensation.
  • In the collar there is a flap to hold the earbud wires in place. This flap is held down by two strips of Velcro. The flap needs to protect the neck better at where the Velcro resides which scratches the back of the neck at times.
  • The top front flaps of the collar never really set right when unzipped. Not a big thing but somewhat annoying.
Likes:

Here is a list of things I liked most about the SCOTTEVEST Travel Vest:

  • Lightweight and breathable feel when wearing in varied Fall time temps.
  • Comfortable fit even when many of the pockets had items within them.
  • There is a pocket for just about every need including holding a bottle of water.
  • Handy elastic band with clip for car keys.
  • Nice integration for iPod and earbuds.
  • Pockets in Pockets for specialty items.
  • I knew where everything was and did not have to fumble to find needed items when geocaching.
Summary

So there you are. I found the Scottevest - Travel Vest to be a very comfortable and useful item when it comes to geocaching. It is far less bulky than a fishing vest and created to house our electronics devices. I recommend you check out this and many of the other clothes items from SCOTTEVEST by going to their website at http://www.scottevest.com. There you can see all their special offers engineered for men and woman.

If you have a product, application or device you would like for me to review. Please send an email to headhardhat@gmail.com

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