Monday, November 10, 2014

Travel Gear: Spectacle Case

You pay attention to every item that goes into your backpack if you're going to carry it for 330 miles (about 530 kilometers).

That was my state of mind when I planned a walk around the north of England with my partner.

I scrutinized every item. Does it provide sufficient value? Can I find something equivalent but lighter?

I used a spreadsheet to maintain a running total of the weight of our packs. Eventually each pack would weigh 14 lb (about 6.4 kilograms).

Our spectacle cases at 3 to 4 ounces (around 100 grams) each were preventing me from reaching the 14 lb goal. Our three cases would be approaching 3% of our total load. Not a lot, but I was getting compulsive about that goal.

I couldn't find spectacle cases that were sufficiently lightweight and crushproof. Then I learned from a Web discussion group about tenite butyrate tubing.

I ordered tubing and caps from US Plastics. I cut the tubing with a boxcutter.

A case for one pair of spectacles, with room to spare for my earbuds, weighs in at 1 ounce (about 27 grams). My spectacles, wrapped in a lens cloth, fit the case loosely without rattling. It's strong and has survived many hikes over the past 4 years.

A case for three spectacles is about 2 ounces (about 54 grams). That's close to half the weight of just one hard-sided case.


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  2. I've read your post Travel Gear: Spectacle Case. Well written article!