From fair weather weekend campers to hardy all-year-round camping fanatics, we all know how important it is to take along the right kind of clothing that will keep us warm and protect us from the wind and rain. Preparing for your trip, checking the forecast and packing the right clothing can be the difference between having the time of your life or just wishing for the trip to be over. There is nothing worse than getting caught out by a heavy downpour and then spending the rest of the trip in ever so slightly damp attire. Whether it’s a thick parka or a high performance waterproof jacket and trousers – your gear looks after you. And in turn, you should look after your gear with a camping hanger designed to dry and protect your garments.
During your trip, you want to be able to dry wet waterproofs and protective clothing as quickly and safely as possible. If the rain has stopped, you ideally want to hang your clothes outside so they can dry naturally and quickly. The Dritek Hanger V2 has been designed with lots of different hanging options in mind. Have you got a tree nearby? Wrap it around a branch. Has your car or van got roof bars? Clip it on. Do you have a guide rope or washing line? Attach it. You might think that you could just as well hang your clothes in the tree, or on the washing line without a hanger, right?
There are two reasons why a Dritek Hanger is ideal as a camping hanger:
- Ventilation: The oversized hanger frame has been specifically designed to be quite thick, creating room inside the garment and allowing the air to circulate – which speeds up the drying process because the fabric doesn’t cling together.
- Secure drying: The carabiner enables you to securely hang your clothes outside even in pretty strong winds, without the fear of your garments falling on the floor where they’ll get wet again and probably dirty too. And if it’s raining, you can clip the hanger on the inside of your awning to let your clothes drip dry out of the rain.
“Last year, we went on a trip to Wales. It was absolutely pouring it down on one of our hikes up Pen y Fan. By the time we got back to our camp, the skies had cleared but the wind had picked up a lot. Our clothes were absolutely sodden, so we hung them on our Dritek Hangers, which we then wrapped around the branch of a nearby tree. After about 30 minutes of flapping, in pretty strong winds, our clothes were dry and we were ready to set off again.” Clare, Buckfastleigh.
The Dritek Hanger V2 is as much about versatility as it is about strength. A camping hanger, that you can securely hang anywhere, can be a really useful addition to your camping gear.
The Making of the Finisterre + Dritek Wetsuit Hanger.
We are huge fans of Finisterre, so when they contacted us to discuss a potential hanger collaboration, we were delighted.
They had used our standard Dritek Hangers and could see their benefits, in particular their versatility and the ability to hang wetsuits across the middle, which eliminates the stretching at the shoulders experienced with ‘normal’ hangers.
However, in certain situations, especially in cold water surfing situations, which Finisterre are famous for, they felt that feeding the wetsuit through the standard hanger was a bit tricky, especially with ice-cold hands and a blowing gale.
They tasked us with developing a hanger that maintained the main Dritek Hanger characteristics (strength, versatility, long lasting) but also offered easy access for inserting wetsuits.
Now, the standard Dritek Hanger was unashamedly developed for mass market. A multi-sector, heavy-duty hanger that is used to hang everything from wetsuits and waterproofs through to motorbike leathers and uniforms. So, the opportunity to develop a new hanger, specifically for wetsuits, was an exciting one.
To improve access, we needed to remove one of the sides of the ‘triangle’, which also meant significantly weakening the triangle. So we had to reinforce the ‘elbow’ to make sure the new hanger would be strong enough. We also needed to make it fatter, to ensure that the wetsuit would be stable when hung and that the neoprene would not be folded over a small area, which can cause a damaging crease. And, to legitimately carry the Finisterre marque, it had to look good, too. But not at the expense of our joint environmental responsibilities, so we had to use recycled plastics and make sure it was a ‘hanger for life’.
Once the hanger design had been agreed upon, we handed it over to the Academy for Innovation & Research (AIR) at Falmouth Universtity to test it for strength and durability. We were then able to get a prototype made from resin-board and see it ‘in the flesh’ for the first time. It looked amazing! But, inevitably it needed a few tweaks and then another prototype, this time from local surfboard shaper Driftwood Surfboards, now Digital Fabrications, milled out of hardwood. Again, it looked amazing and this time we’d cracked it!
The actual hangers were made by the world’s No.1 hanger manufacturer, Mainetti, based in Jedburgh in Scotland, who were also excited about making such a unique and innovative hanger. It was great to be able to make the hanger in the UK, but it was even better to work with a company who are pioneers and world leaders in recycling hangers and can boast an amazing global ‘distribution and returns rework’ which enables them to reintroduce or recycle tens of millions of hangers each year.
As the Finisterre Hanger was to be bright electric blue, we couldn’t use just any type of recycled plastic. In fact it had to come from contact lense blisters, which are colourless.
The end result is not only a triumph of design and engineering but also a practical and desirable product that will keep wetsuits in top condition and last a lifetime.
For more information visit – www.finisterreuk.com/shop
Cornish company Dritek Ltd were delighted that their Dritek Hanger was chosen by Triumph Motorcycles as the preferred garment hanger for their recent International Dealer Show.
Triumph, who have 750 dealers in over 50 countries, unveiled their A/W 2016 Collection at ExCel in London, and commissioned a Triumph branded Dritek Hanger to present their garments to the world.
The Triumph hanger will itself feature in the Triumph A/W 2016 Collection and Dritek Managing Director, Mark Jones, explained, “Producing a hanger for Triumph was a huge honour. They are an internationally recognised brand producing iconic motorcycles and accessories, and to be a small part of that is very exciting. Hopefully the Triumph Hanger will become an integral accessory to the range”.
Triumph Product Manager and Buyer, Leiah Roberts, said that there had been “good feedback” so far.
The Dritek Hanger, known for being the most versatile heavy-duty garment hanger, has proven popular within a wide range of sectors, including surfing, sailing, diving, motorcycling, and more recently search & rescue and the military.
It’s innovative and patented design allows heavy or wet garments to be hung safely and securely virtually anywhere, thanks to it’s strong hanger frame, it’s flexible / adjustable strap and high load carabiner.
Mr. Jones continued. “The Dritek Hanger is a multi-purpose, multi-sector product, and is therefore ideal for hanging motorcycle gear and other protective garments, outdoors clothing, water-wear and uniforms. It’s designed to be gentle on fabrics and allows users to dry their gear safely and quickly, which will keep garments better maintained so they will last longer”.
The Triumph Hanger will not be available until September 2016, however the Dritek Hanger is available from retailers all over the UK and on-line.
For many water sport and outdoor enthusiasts, functional, reliable waterproofs make the difference between good day and a bad day. Staying dry and warm can also be a matter of health and safety. Even life and death. So looking after your gear, making sure it’s up to the job as and when you need it should be a primary concern.
High quality waterproofs are generally made using well thought out designs, from hi-tech materials and often coated in innovative solutions. But all too often, once the fun is over, garments are taken off and forgotten about.
However, looking after your gear properly in between uses not only helps to maintain their performance properties, but can also prolong their lifespan.
Waterproofs are designed to get wet. Naturally. However, they prefer to be dry. In between uses it’s imperative that you get them dry, as quickly as you can, and get them hung up or stored away for next time. Leaving wet waterproofs to dry slowly is an invitation to those age old adversaries, mould and mildew, which are not only unsightly and smelly, but are also an unhealthy addition to your kit bag.
But equally as important, mould and mildew can cause irreversible damage to materials, seals and components, which inevitably leads to a loss in reliability and performance, costly repairs or commonly, a trip to the landfill.
Dry waterproofs are both warmer and lighter. So whether you are onboard or onshore, hang up your waterproofs whenever the opportunity presents itself, ideally in the fresh air so they can dry out thoroughly.
Large, robust hangers, ideally made specifically for such garments, are the best way to hang up your gear. Using hangers that are too thin will mean the weight of the garments will be concentrated over a small area at the shoulders, stretching out the fabric and potentially leading to cracks and tears. As cleverly designed as your waterproof jacket maybe, chances are the designer wasn’t thinking about adding otherwise unnecessary support to the shoulders for hanging purposes.
Hang your clothes outdoors to dry, ideally, and if possible out of direct sunlight. Waterproofs hung outdoors will dry in a fraction of the time that they will indoors, and will do so in fresh air which will help to reduce any odours.
If your waterproofs have been at sea, are heavily soiled or are simply sweaty, make sure to wash them according to the manufacturers guidelines and then hang them up to dry. This removes any corrosive residues and minimises the build up of bacteria.
It may be advisable to dry your garments in a tumble dryer, depending on the fabrics, however, on the whole, you can’t beat a good old natural breeze.
The Dritek hanger was designed with looking after waterproofs and outdoor clothing in mind. It allows users to hang their gear safely and securely, indoors or outdoors, and is an ideal travel companion. It may not be small but you’ll definitely be glad you packed it.
For more information about the Dritek hanger click here: www.dritekproducts.com/dritek-hanger/product-information
Anyone who uses wetsuits regularly will tell you that putting on a wet or damp wetsuit is no big deal. There may be a couple of swear words and some involuntary monkey hoots as you get in, but it’s over in a flash. The wetsuit will then get on with its job of insulating your body.
If anything, getting into a damp wetsuit is a positive thing as it means it’s getting used regularly, and you’re therefore probably in a good frame of mind.
So why do we need to worry about hanging our wetsuits at all? The answer is more about looking after the materials and components in between uses, than getting them dry.
Wetsuit fabrics on the whole are robust and durable. They have to be to survive getting them on and off, as well as the pounding they’ll get during their use. However, they are also pretty vulnerable and need looking after.
Firstly, sea water. This is a pretty harsh liquid and can be corrosive. Over time, if wetsuits aren’t rinsed with fresh water the fabrics can begin to harden, and therefore become less elastic and responsive to your body shape and your movements. And the components, like the zips and toggles can begin to stiffen or stick. So, flushing your wetsuit in between uses is essential for general maintenance.
However, it’s not just sea water that you need to worry about. There are billions of bacteria in the water, and rinsing your wetsuits will, at least, wash a lot of them away. Urine too. Not that anyone has ever urinated in their wetsuit, of course, however if they did, they’d want to rinse it out afterwards to minimise its acidity and nasty odour. A stale and smelly wetsuit isn’t just unpleasant, it’s a sure sign that your wetsuit’s materials are not in good condition.
Best practise is to rinse your wetsuits and let them drip-dry out of direct sunlight. When you come to use it again, it may not be dry, but who cares? It’ll be fresh and functional. Keeping your wetsuit fresh will prolong its ability to hold your shape and make it last longer.
Secondly, the wetsuit materials are generally delicate and can slice or snag easily. If you leave them on the floor or draped over a fence or balcony, they can get snagged or fall down, where they can get pushed around on the floor, trodden on, covered in sand or even attract attention from our K9 and feline friends. So, it’s best to hang your wetsuits up, out of the way.
And, thirdly, maintaining your suit’s shape. A good wetsuit, like a favourite pair of jeans, knows your body and learns to mould around your lumps and bumps (and guns), and in turn will keep you warmer for longer. Hanging it on traditional hangers, where all of the weight is supported by the shoulders, is a bad idea. Your box standard hangers are made for dry materials, to be used indoors, not for wet and heavy wetsuits. Using these will cause severe stretching of the fabric, for prolonged periods of time, and the material can only take so much before if starts to lose shape, begin to thin and even split. The hanger may also break, and then we’re back to being on the floor.
The best way to hang your wetsuit is at the waist, over something straight and smooth. This eliminates all material stretch and allows the suit to drip dry from both the arms and the legs. And, if you’re not lucky enough to use your wetsuit regularly, then you can leave it hanging like this indefinitely, safe in the knowledge that it’s not going to be out of shape when the next time comes.
The Dritek hanger was designed with looking after wetsuits in mind. It allows you to hang your wetsuit safely and securely, indoors or outdoors, and will never let you down. Check out our website for more information – www.dritekproducts.com/dritek-hanger/product-information/