Look – We’re all busy. As writers, readers, and reviewers, sometimes it’s nice to boil info down to its core. I’ve done just that with several pieces of my most carried gear: The Citizen BM8180, Lansky BladeMedic, Spyderco Dragonfly 2, Hitch & Timber wallet, and Olight S1R Baton. Heck, I even threw in a few handkerchiefs to add some color to the affair.
So, why no full writeups on the Dragonfly 2, BM8180, and S1R? Frankly, I feel these (great) pieces of gear have been reviewed to death, and I don’t have anything meaningful to add to the discussion. I’ll provide a few thoughts, but the links to other reviews will tell you all you need to know.
Without further ado, here are a few quick hits on some of the fixtures of my EDC.
Citizen BM810 Watch & BluShark NATO Strap (Trimmed)
I bought this watch as a replacement for my Seiko 5 SNK809. It’s been one of my most-worn watches over the past six months, and I couldn’t be happier with it. The accuracy is great (maybe +1.5 seconds per week), the durability has been stellar, and I can’t say enough about the value-to-cost ratio. Its blue-ish lume and solar charging really send it over the top for me.
If there’s one problem, it’s the strap. While it’s certainly attractive, the studded metal holes have pretty large gaps between adjustements. This made it hard to find the right size for my wrist, so I switched to a BluShark NATO. After a quick trim of the keeper strap, it rides close and casual. One of my two favorite watches, along with the Orient Mako 2.
Reviews: Nick Shabazz
Lansky BladeMedic Sharpener
I bought this thinking it would be the last sharpener I’d ever need. Also, I’m an idiot.
This is the lone piece of gear here that I’m not sure I’d recommend. It’s fine for field sharpening your beater blades, but don’t expect any kind of meaningful or lasting edge. Right now, it lives in my off-body EDC kit as an emergency backup on hikes. Its variety of grits makes it versatile enough for working use, but none of the sharpening surfaces are of real quality. About the only steel it sees these days are my cheap kitchen knives.
How am I supposed to do a full review of a handkerchief? I know I’m pretentious but, come on, I’m not that bad. Am I? Anyway, one of the consequences of signing up for Instagram was the decision to start carrying a handkerchief. Makers like Guerrilla Hanks, Hankensteins, and Recycled Firefigher caught my attention with their designs, and I was instantly sold. These have proved to be very useful in my daily life (And no, I don’t blow my nose into them). Smear on your phone? Handkerchief. Smudge on the watch? Handkerchief. Walking past a tower dumping coal dust into the air? Hank over the mouth and nose.
A special note about the “Probie” Nomex handkerchief from Recycled Firefighter: In the laughing words of my wife, “You bought a fireproof hanky?” No, dear. Fire resistant. And believe it or not, it’s come in handy around the campfire.
Spyderco Dragonfly 2 Knife
My favorite knife to wear with gym shorts. Not at the gym, mind you (Seriously, do you need a knife to cut cables on your tri extensions?), but around the house after a long day of work. It also happens to be my first Spyderco and, in some ways, the knife that helped me see the appeal of $40-plus blades.
It’s great in the hand, VG-10 is fine, and the pocket clip is excellent. Other than its touchy disassembly, there’s nothing I don’t like about this knife. I’d recommend it to anyone and everyone searching for their first EDC blade.
Reviews (NOTE: All looking at the ZDP-189 steel model): Cedric & Ada Outdoors, Nick Shabazz, EveryDayCommentary
Hitch & Timber EDC Card Caddy Wallet
This has been my go-to wallet for almost a year, and I’m just as in love with it now as I was at first sight. The ability to carry a pen and multi-tool in an orderly fashion has been a revelation. My Fisher Backpacker and Leatherman Style PS fit perfectly in its front slots, with enough room for several cards and some cash.
Hitch & Timber has updated their design since mine came out, and I highly recommend that you take a look. The new prominence of their logo I missed out on, so I’ll probably purchase another once this wallet wears out. But given the quality of their stitching and leather, I could be waiting a while.
Olight S1R Baton Flashlight
I’ve heard people argue that you only really need about 120 lumens for your daily life. But I work on a construction site, crawling in, out, and over large industrial machinery. So when I’m inspecting a building or silo that’s yet to be powered up, the S1R’s Turbo modes are absolutely invaluable. It checks every box for me – Bright, rechargeable, durable, and easy to carry. The magnetic tail cap is also a plus, as is the strobe mode (How else do you get someone’s attention in a high-noise area when you’re 50 feet in the air?). If I have one complaint, it’s the girth. With certain pairs of jeans, this guy feels a little chunky in my watch pocket. But this is a minor nitpick, and not something that’s kept it from becoming my most carried work light.
Reviews: Nick Shabazz, EveryDayCommentary