Today in the News: I'm looking for guest writers. Please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org .
Link of the Day: I really want you all to visit Ross' blog over at http://woodtrekker.blogspot.com/2010/12/traditional-axe-and-log-cabin-making.html - he has a great video up today of an axe being made along with some other stuff. Ross has a great blog and I really encourage all of you to become followers. I am, and I have yet to be disappointed by a single post. Please go check out that video and drop him a note saying I sent you.
Today, another fantastic guest article from the Wandering Thinker........
Stansport Hand Warmer, by Kurt the Wandering Thinker
This is partly a review and partly an exposure of my folly, so you won't make the same mistakes I did.
I picked two of these up a few days ago, trying to find something better than Hot Hands (Which I don't like at all), mostly because they burned a fuel stick. Therefore, it should be amazing hot. Well, I did'nt try it out before I got in my tree stand and that was a bad idea, because I got pretty upset when it did'nt work at first. Had I done the smart thing and used it before I needed it, I would have found out that it takes around an hour to really get going.
The design is pretty good in my opinion. The push button lock seems pretty sturdy and it comes with a little bag to make sure it doesn't come open, as well as to keep you from burning yourself if you try to burn the whole stick at once I'm sure. At around $4 at Sportsman's Warehouse its a pretty good deal in my opinion. It comes with two (charcoal I think) sticks and you can buy a pack of twelve for about $3, which is much cheaper than Hot Hands. All you have to do is light a stick, put it on the insulation pad, and close.
Part of my problem with this product is I didn't follow the directions like a good little consumer. It tells you, on both the warmer package and replacement stick package, "Allow fuel stick to burn down about 1/2 inch." which I didn't really do. I let it burn around 1/2 inch on one side and this caused it to take a long time to heat up, because only a small amount of air can get in, which makes it last a LONG time.
So, after about 30 mins. I was increadly frustrated with how little heat was being produced after I put it in my glove (my hands and feet were FREEZING! Stupid me for not realizing it can get colder once the sun has risen). Not to long after that I got the call from my dad saying he was ready to go in, so I packed up, tossed it in my bag, and could'nt wait to get back to the truck and turn the heat on.
Well, when we loaded our gear I told him how bad this little thing was and made him feel it to show just how right I was. The first words out of his mouth here "That's HOT!" ... yep, sure 'nuff ... an hour after I lit the stick, it was nice and toasty.
In short, I would get one if you need some extra heat while out. Just MAKE SURE THE STICK IS LIT CORRECTLY AND WAIT AN HOUR! Don't freeze like I did.
However, don't expect it to be a replacement for the proper dress! It will keep you somewhat warm but it's designed to work with proper insulation, not replace it. Also, be aware of the smell. It's burning a fuel (again, i think its charcoal but I'm not 100%) and, while it doesn't necessarily stink, it will make you and anything around you smell pretty strong of it. I'm not sure how this would affect hunting but my dad says as long as it dos'nt smell human it dos'nt matter. I would also recommend either breaking the stick in half and lighting one end of each for increase heat, or even lighting both ends of one stick, but you'll have to replace them sooner and give it time to heat up again.
Thanks for reading and Take Care and STAY WARM! God Bless!
That's all for today, folks!
Pax Domini Sit Semper Vobiscum,
Mike, Oscar, Hotel......out.