Category Archives: Product Review

Products reviews by Gear Guide for Men on all things that will enhance your life!

darkfin glove

Darkfin Glove: The Ultimate Water Glove!

Almost every water sport has some type of glove meant to enhance your performance in some way.  But all of them get blown out of the water (pun intended?) by the Darkfin Webbed Power Gloves.  Most gloves are made from a woven type of material which can get heavy when wet or maybe its a water resistant material but it ends up lacking dexterity. The darkfin glove handles those issues and then some! Another benefit is that you don’t just pick based on the old small, medium, large scale! There are 12 total sizes to choose from because let’s face it hands are not just small medium and large.

Darkfin gloves

I tested these out on a little kayaking trip over the 4th of July weekend to see for myself.  After all, these are said to not only help you underwater but help you with almost any water sport. Now I didn’t get into any class III rapids on the intracoastal but the extra grip and fit helped me handle my paddle much better than ever before. It was a bit warmer than a typical cut off fingers kayak glove but the performance was 10 times better. It was if the paddle was glued to my hands. I did jump in the water and test out the webbed feature on these gloves because it is the striking feature of the glove. It was able to really get me moving through the water even through the strong currents!

The glove is dipped in a company protected secret “rubber” to protect it and allow it to be so flexible for dexterity and durability. They claim to have been studying marine life propulsion and aquatic sports to create such a wonderful glove for over 20 years. I don’t know what they’ve really been studying, they could have been watching episodes of flipper and a squirrel on water skis for all I care, this glove is amazing!  The idea to make 12 sizes is a great way to ensure the proper fit which most glove companies don’t do. They call this a propulsion glove and it really does do the trick! But whether you’re a…

surfer:

Surfer using dark fin gloves

kayaker:

kayaker paddling with darkfin gloves

diver:

Scuba diver using darkfin gloves

or just a swimmer:

swimming with darkfin gloves

You can really improve your performance with these Darkfin Gloves!

Gone Beachin’ Part 2

The folks over at Gone Beachin’ have been kind enough to send over plenty of samples and products to really fit into our “Salted” lifestyle that they cater to. If you aren’t too familiar with Gone Beachin, check out out first post. They’ve got great designs and comfortable clothes!

 

Today I wanted to discuss the palm design shirt that was sent to us. First of all the palm design has a real cool look to it and its not just down the front or even front and center. To us it gave a real cool laid back to the shirt just from the design alone.

 

Gone Beachin palm tree t-shirt

 

As you can see the palm design is almost down the side and actually wraps around the back of the shirt too. It’s pretty cool! Plus the material is super light! It’s a real blessing when you’re wearing this in 95 degree heat with almost 100% humidity here in South Florida! Its got a stretch to it similar to the stretch that comes with these Hurley Boardshorts

We also got this great vehicle decal sticker!

Gone beachin vehicle decal sticker

It’s made from a real heavy duty vinyl to be honest. Most car stickers seem a little flimsy, but this one could easily be thrown not only on your car or truck but a boat or board! Show off you’re living the Salted lifestyle with this decal anywhere you want!

 

This American company based out of Michigan really knows what that Beachin’ lifestyle is all about. From their clothes to their merchandise products you can always find something that shows you’ve Gone Beachin’.

 

 

spitfire kayak

Steer clear of this kayak

On a recent trip to North Georgia a group of us wound up at a lake renting some kayaks. I’ve owned kayaks for some 8 years. I’ve used quite a few different types and brands of kayaks.  The rental place said they had enough kayaks for us. We only rented 2 tandems and 2 singles. It was a quiet day on the lake but low and behold we were stuck with one regular 11 foot kayak and…a Spitfire kayak.

We first question if this was even built to handle an adult because it was not very big. Based on the size I’d say this was the 8 foot version (there is a 6 ft version as well).  We were assured yes this is for adults. So to start off my wife being lighter than myself tried this kayak out and made it all of 100 yards to the nearest shoreline before almost trying to sink the damn thing herself. As a gentleman I offered to switch and try to use this dingy of a kayak for our trip.

She was NOT wrong. I felt like I was an ant floating on a leaf in this middle of this lake. Each time I paddled the nose would swerve sharply to that side. I’m not sure why anyone would invest in this kayak. The only saving grace was that it floated. There was no steering and the numerous counter strokes to keep moving in some general direction slowed the kayak down a lot. This was not a very big lake luckily. I can only imagine buying this kayak for small kids maybe 10-12 years old.  The website says adults but this is not a good buy for an adult looking to kayak. Perhaps people are interested in this because of the small size for storage and transportation. I’ve seen quite a few boats with these on the back of their swim platforms, but these are not ideal for kayaking to and from somewhere.

This kayak left such a foul taste in my mouth that I thought I’d share this review with all of you so you’d know that not all kayaks are as advertised. There is a reason why most kayaks start at around 11ft. So follow this tip if the kayak looks like a bath tub playtoy it probably is! This is a great go to Ocean Kayak  for anyone looking to buy. Fairly inexpensive, rugged, durable, lightweight, easy to maneuver, and fun. Good luck in your next kayak search and happy paddling!

Case Coolie Product Review

When I came across the Case Coolie, I was in shock and disbelief to be quite honest.  The claim that really caught my attention wasn’t the fact that it would keep your drinks cold for 10+ hours, it was the fact that it could do this with NO ice! Being in South Florida we unfortunately don’t have cases of beer that come in the size that this was designed for. I know right? Why don’t they sell 30 racks in Florida?! Anyways I wasn’t going to let that stop me from giving this a solid review!

First I’ll tell you a little bit about the bag/cooler/partypack carrying awesome box that is the Case Coolie. The one we received thanks to Case Coolie, was a nice solid red! It has an outer later that I can only compare to a wet suit material like a Neoprene. This adds to its durability and as a bonus it doesn’t slide all over like a regular plastic cooler does. It has one end that encloses the case with multiple long velcro strips so it doesn’t pop open when carrying. The case is wrapped with straps to carry and has a short handle and a strap as well. The inside is lined with an aluminum lining that reflects and does the majority of the cooling work for the Case Coolie.

Here are some pictures of the Case Coolie we received for this review:

Side to open:

case coolie product review to keep beer cold without ice

 

Right side:

case coolie cooler outdoors

Left Side:

Case Coolie Gear Guide for Men Tailgating Cooler

Interior:

Inside case coolie cooler for 30 pack of beer

Now to test this cooler since I didn’t have exact sized box of beer that this was designed for I wanted to at least see if it could keep 24 beers cold and handle the weight. I packed this cooler and headed out on my Ocean Kayak. In the hot south florida sun I was half expecting my beer to arrive at my destination island luke-warm at best. However, after a few hours of paddling and the beer being pounded by the hot florida sun, I was surprised to find all of the beers were very cold! We didn’t get to test the full 10+ hours but 6-8 hours in the Florida sun is about 10 if you ask me!

With Football season quite a few months away you still have time to order one and get it early because this is the ultimate Tailgating cooler! No ice! No leaky mess or water after? Keep 30 beers cold and be able to carry it on your shoulder! No too shabby if you ask me!

If you would like you’re very own Case Coolie and live in the US, just share this post and tag @GearGuideforMen and #CaseCoolie on twitter or Facebook to enter. We will draw a winner at random to win this!

 

Hiking with Lifestraw drinking water out of a puddle

LifeStraw is a Life Saver!

Let’s face it water is essential to living, the human body can last for a month of more without food, but can’t last more than a week without water! Our bodies are made up of over 60% water and we need it to function.  Many of Gear Guide for Men‘s readers find themselves away from city water that’s been treated and often are surrounded by non-drinkable water supply. I remember myself going camping growing up and having to cart in the fresh water supply we need for the few days we would be in the woods or having to boil water in order to make it clean. Those days are gone thanks to the LifeStraw.

LifeStraw product review

The LifeStraw is basically a big straw that you stick right into any water source; a bottle, a river or even a puddle and it converts the bacteria filled water into clean drinkable water.  It does this by using advanced hollow fiber membrane technology to filter out 99.9% of waterborne bacteria including E. Coli and Salmonella. Plus 99.9% of waterborne protozoa, including Giardia and Cryptosporidium. The LifeStraw doesn’t use any chemicals to treat the water either, so there is no after taste and its BPA free!

This is an incredible tool to have whether you’re going camping, hiking, fishing, or even building an apocalypse bomb shelter and want to be able to drink water into the future! Each LifeStraw can filter up to a 1000 liters of water. So keep that in mind if you’re trying to stock up for life off the grid! You can grab them here for about $20 which isn’t bad considering how great and vital this little straw can be!

This only weighs 2 ounces and is easy to carry with you at 9 inches long and 1 inch in diameter. It meets US drinking water standards so you can trust that when you stick it into that puddle or stream you can be sure you’re getting fresh, clean, great tasting drinking water. With no moving parts to break and ease of use for everyone this is the perfect fresh water system for the outdoor enthusiast!

Daiwa mini system mini reel fishing rod and reel combo for travel with hard case review

Daiwa MiniSpin Travel Fishing Rod

For a short time I worked in outside sales and drove around so much I had to downsize from a Full size pick up truck with a V8 to a cross over SUV with a 4 cylinder engine. Needless to say this mean my “gear” didn’t fit in my new vehicle. Living in South Florida and getting the itch to do some fishing, I almost always had a fishing rod with me. My new vehicle meant things had to change.

Change can be scary. I had never owned a travel fishing rod, but after being caught too many times without one I had to get one. I chose the Daiwa Mini System Minispin fishing rod and reel because I liked the case it came in and had a pretty good reputation. Now this isn’t a rod to be fighting the big fish with, but if you’re looking to hook up with some decent size light fish then this is perfect!

Here is what you get when you buy a Daiwa MiniSpin: A hard case to travel with, which is important when hiking or basically any travel that could bang up your luggage.  The reel is ultralight and smooth, with ball bearings and multi-disc drag as well. The term ultralight just in case you were wondering is intended really to be for the size fish you’re going after. It has a 5:1 to 1 retrieve ratio. The rod itself comes in 5 pieces and is built to handle 2-6 lb test line and lures from 1/16 oz. to 1/4 oz weights.

It fits right under my car seat and is an easy grab for me to put together and throw a line in when I’m stalking some bass in the canals near my house. The size of the case is 14 x 7.8 x 2.5 and doesn’t weigh much for those considering packing issues in your hiking pack or airline luggage. I’ve used it to catch a few 1-2lb large mouth bass here in South Florida and it does the trick. Actually makes the fight a little bit more exciting if you ask me! Sometimes I have a tough time deciding between using my standard rods or this when I’m at home.

Gone Beachin Co.

When we came across Gone Beachin, we first were really blown away by the designs and approach that this company has.  We thought it was pretty cool that they had unsalted and salted divisions. Lets face it, the majority of the United States is landlocked and doesn’t have an ocean to enjoy! This doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t be able to express their beach loving life style through their apparel choices.  The company derived its name from a note they’d leave when heading to the beach for the day. It doesn’t just mean going to the beach…it stands for everything that the beach represents. This is very evident in the designs that the company has to offer!

We were given a chance to try out some of this fine clothing for Gear Guide for Men.  Being in Florida naturally we went with the Salted option! Gone Beachin was just finishing up on their Florida Salted Tee. They also told us they had really cool decals, stickers and bathing suits which we will review at a later date. So when the package arrived, the first thing we did was grab our Gone Beachin shirt and head for the beach!

Salted design t-shirt from Gone Beachin worn on the beach in Biscayne Bay Miami

The shirt was made of an awesome lightweight material that was perfect to wear in the hot Miami sun as we rode our bikes around Biscayne Bay. After we got done playing in the water and hanging out in the sand, the shirt was easy to throw back on. It’s lightweight material made it breathable and perfect to throw on after getting all sandy and salty! They have mens and women’s shirts available and a lot of different designs for both salted and unsalted lifestyles! Here is the shirt we were sent to review.

Florida Salted version T-shirt made by Gone Beachin Co.

Not only were we really pleased with the high quality of the shirt but the options and costs are perfect! Move over “salt life”, Gone Beachin is primed and ready for an apparel take over!

You can find them on twitter @GoneBeachinCo

Facebook.com/GoneBeachin

Instagram @GoneBeachin

ReelCase

We were offered an exclusive look at what will be one of the hottest gadgets for iPhones in 2015!  We are of course talking about the Reelcase iPhone case that launched its kickstarter program today.

The ReelCase was originally created to provide easy access for smartphone photographers. As they saw that most cameras had straps to keep the camera out and close to grab quick shots. Smartphones usually had to be dug out of ones pocket for this. With ReelCase you’ll be able to use it’s retractable lanyard to hang your iPhone around your neck or a bag for example. Its perfect for those looking to have their iPhone accessible when doing outdoor activities!

ReelCase iPhone case with retractable lanyard on ski lift

The lanyard can be retracted at any point up to 28 inches and it’s made of a comfortable nylon material. The case itself is made of polycarbonate and TPU and will fit Iphone5/5s and Iphone6. You’ll be able to get it in 3 different colors: black, red and teal. Not only will it make life easier but it’ll protect your phone as well!

ReelCase being worn around the neck of a guy riding a bike through a city to protect his iPhone

This is a perfect solution for those of us wishing we were able to keep our phone out but not hold it in our hand. For athletes training this will allow them to keep it close by, outdoor enthusiasts can enjoy hikes without taking up valuable pocket space, and businessmen who need quick access to their trusted smart phones! No more dropping your phone every time you take it out of your pocket! The ReelCase is a great iPhone accessory. Jump on their kickstarted and pre-order yours!

Man on a beach wearing his iPhone in a Reelcase around his neck

Credit Card knife perfect to fit into a wallet as the ultimate travel accessory for men

Tool Logic – Credit Card Companion

Remember that credit card company slogan “Don’t leave home without it”? The Tool Logic Credit Card Companion really should have adopted that slogan. This multi-tool, credit card thin, must have is perfect for those of us who can’t always have our trusty Leatherman multi-tool on us at all times. We all have our favorite handy dandy pocket knife we try to grab before we leave the house, but you can leave that at home and just grab your wallet with this gadget tucked inside it!  Some may call it the guardian angel…because you’ll hardly realize you’re carrying it, but when you need it, it pulls more than its weight!

tool logic credit card companion multi-tool pocketknife

This amazing wallet tool box comes with a razor sharp, 2″ stainless steel blade with serrated edge, a can/bottle opener, awl, 8x power lens, a compass, toothpick, tweezers, small/large screwdrivers, and inch and cm rulers thrown on the back. Somehow they packed all of this into one card that only weighs 1.3 oz. For those of us who like to travel light but never be caught unprepared this couldn’t be better!

All tool logic products come with a lifetime warranty too! So don’t be afraid to bust out this tiny yet powerful tool when you need to! The knife can easily cut through rope, rubber hose, and of course cardboard along with almost anything else you can throw at it.  Some of the other accessories will wear out long before this blade will let you down. You will probably use the blade more than anything but you’ll be surprised how many times you pull out the screwdrivers to tighten things or make adjustments.

This make a great gift but also gives you some reassurance that you’ll almost always have something to get the job done right in your pocket! Right now you can save %50 if you get it here:

 

The original nomad, portable hot tub

Hot Tub To Go: The Original Nomad

There is nothing better after a long day or hiking, fishing, mountain biking, or most anything outdoors than a nice soak in a hot tub! However most of us don’t always travel with this fine luxury! Unless we are going glamping many of us tend to rough it out and don’t get to enjoy the ultimate relaxation technique of the hot tub soak. Ingenuity and creativity have now blessed us with The Original Nomad and blessed us with the worlds first portable hot tub!!

the original nomad portable hot tub

What you need to know: Now this isn’t necessarily a plug and play type of operation. However, it is relatively simple enough to operate. They do recommend filling with the aid of a water pump if not camping near a water source. The actual system however doesn’t require anything except for a good old fashioned fire (or propane). The system uses something called thermo-syphoning to pump the water heated from the coils into the hot tub. It will take between 2-3 hours to heat up to about 105 degrees Farenheit so keep that in mind when planning on using this.

So now all you have to do is figure out where you’d going to test this amazing hot tub out at! Looks like it’s time to plan that next adventure! It’s made of durable vinyl and sets up relatively easily. Seems like The Original Nomad portable hot tub is a new must have when camping!