The Gear You Missed

This Week in Gear: August 9, 2014

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Michael-Bastian-Smartwatch-Gear-Patrol Michael Bastian Smartwatch
Inspired by the dashboards and details of luxury cars, this innovative gentleman’s watch is the child of a Michael Bastian and Gilt collaboration. Engineered with smart technology by Hewlett-Packard, the Smartwatch syncs with both Android and iOS devices to display texts, news updates and emails. It’s souped up with a 44mm stainless steel case, inlaid buttons, three interchangeable wristbands and a seven-day power reserve. It goes on sale this fall.
Vespa-946-Gear-Patrol 2014 Vespa 946 Collection Bellissima.
Exclusivity in the automotive world typically involves exotic materials, stratospheric top speeds and prices that cause the average Joe to question his station in life. Vespa’s new 946 Bellissima Collection packs an elegant design and upscale materials into a tiny package. It’s sold with a handmade, artisan-crafted mono-seat, but early adopters will receive a second two-up saddle as a gift — as well as some other exclusive goodies. Under its svelte skin the Bellissima packs ABS, traction control and a 150cc motor. Only 100 units are destined for North America, beginning this August. $10,499
Nemo-Coda-Sleeping-Bag-Gear-Patrol Nemo Coda 0 Sleeping Bag
On the trail, cash is useless. Weight is the only relevant currency and carrying this to the campsite will costs less than three pounds. Made from high-end fabrics and filled with 850 fill power goose down insulation, this sleeping bag stretches at the knees for side sleepers. $700
Sony-3-way-speakers-Gear-Patrol Sony’s 3-way 3-driver Bookshelf Speaker System
The name’s not the most creative, but it’s descriptive—we’ll give them that. These speakers have a 5 1/4-inch foamed-mica cellular reinforced woofer; are great for sound staging; can play high resolution audio; and cost less than Bose’s SoundLink. $220
Cactus-Trigger-Gear-Patrol Cactus Wireless Flash Transceiver V6
It’s the world’s first wireless flash trigger that works with any combination of cameras and flashes—at the same time. Capable of controlling power output of Canon, Nikon and Pentax flashes, Japan-based Cactus’s new trigger comes loaded with 30 popular flash models. The photographer in you is giddy right now. ()
Duckworth-Gear-Patrol Duckworth American Wool
Gordon Bombay doesn’t work for these guys. From Montana pastures, Duckworth is the first wool brand to showcase single-sourced original fibers. Their custom yarns and fabrics come from Helle Ranch’s pastures. It’s 100 percent American and they’re launching this fall.
amazon-aria-photo-essay-gear-patrol-lead Photo Essay: Traveling the Amazon by Riverboat
In much of the Amazon, traveling by riverboat is the best form of transportation. So we set off from Iquitos, Peru, fondly dubbed the Capital of the Peruvian Amazon, aboard the Aqua Aria, a luxurious river boat that would take us roughly 100 miles up and down the Amazon River. Read this story
Orion-Gear-Patrol Mission Workshop Orion
Whether you’re mountain biking or walking the dog, your outdoors activities need not be thwarted by rain. The Orion jacket by Mission Workshop is a fully-taped waterproof jacket. It’s a featherweight 370 grams, is made from stretchable fabrics and was built to react to body temperature changes. As your activity level increases, the fabric adjusts to the heat of your body, allowing more heat to escape; it’s a weatherproof jacket you can wear in all seasons. $439
Kettlecharge-Gear-Patrol BioLite Kettle Charge
Potable water was once the most important thing to have during a camping trip. But electricity has become just as necessary. With the BioLite KettleCharge you can have both. It boils your water and uses the thermal energy to produce 10 watts of power for electronics. You may have to do your business in a hole in the woods, but at least you can play Angry Birds while doing it. $150
Iris-Zwave-Garage-Door-Controller-Gear-Patrol Iris Z-Wave Garage Door Controller
The analogue home is becoming a thing of the past. Now bulbs, locks and appliances can all be controlled with your phone; and now your garage door can, too. With the Iris Z-Wave, you can open and close your garage door from anywhere with phone service. $99
Panda-Ultra-Adapter-Gear-Patrol Panda Ultra Wireless N UsSBA Adapter
Even if you’ve put down good money for a hotel room, oftentimes you’re required to put down even more cash just for some wi-fi — even worse, you can only use it on one device. Panda Wireless’s new N UsSBA adapter allows you to cheat by broadcasting the wireless signal from your laptop to other devices in your area. Take that, Double Tree. $11
Outerboro-Breeze-Shirt-Gear-Patrol Outerboro Breeze Shirt
Blending stye and comfort during the summer months is often a difficult task, but Outerboro’s Breeze shirt is here to free you from the tyranny of back sweat. It may look like your standard button-up, but it’s loaded with moisture wicking, quick-dry, and odor-controlling technology. $120
Aime-Leon-Dore-Travel-Pack-Gear-Patrol Aime Leon Dore Travel Pack
The backpack is no longer just for college students to schlep their textbooks from the dorm to the library. Aime Leon Dore’s new Travel pack is made from American leather and 22-ounce canvas, and features dedicated sleeves for a MacBook and an iPad Mini, letting you lug all your stuff to work in style. $400
best-diesel-motorcycles-gear-patrol-lead-full Smoke and Mirrors: 5 Best Diesel Motorcycles
Diesel engines may just be the perfect fit for motorcycles. They offer bullet-proof reliability, stump-pulling torque and the kind of range even Ted Simon can only dream of. Add to that the fact that refuelling doesn’t involve extended time out of the saddle and it makes you wonder why there aren’t more on the market. We found four examples that would look great in our garage on the road. Read This Story
Deejo-Knife-Gear-Patrol Deejo 37 Gram Wood Pocketknife
At first glance, the chic curvature of Deejo’s pocketknives might seem inapt for hiking, climbing and sailing. But it’s burlier than it appears, with a secure lock system and an ultralight form. And it’s damn classy in juniper, rosewood and granadilla. $33
Luggage-Tag-Wallet-Gear-Patrol Hold Fast Luggage Tag Wallet
Some people, whether for fear of back problems or for vanity, can’t stand keeping a wallet in the back pocket, no matter how thin. Hold Fast’s luggage tag wallet is a secure solution — a tag of hardy leather that clips onto your belt loop, with easy-to-access pockets for whatever cards you need to grab quickly. Loop your keyring onto the clip to free up even more pocket space. $165
Rocki-Play-Gear-Patrol ROCKI
There are plenty of options for those seeking to buy bluetooth speakers. For everyone else, there’s ROCKI, a device that allows you to hijack any speaker with a 3.55mm jack. Just connect ROCKI to the speaker in question and stream music from your phone, tablet, or computer via wi-fi. $49
Facundo-Rum-Gear-Patrol- Bacardi FACUNDO Rum Collection
Rum‘s renaissance hasn’t been quite as pronounced as whiskey’s — here in New York, at least — but if Bacardi’s Facundo series of barrel-aged rums is any indication, there’s plenty of room in the rum world for creativity. The Facundo series is comprised of four different blends of rums that have been aged from seven to 23 years, which should be enticing enough for anyone interested in whiskey’s sugarier compadre.
Denim-Refresh-Gear-Patrol Mr. Black Garment Essentials
One of the biggest lessons college kids learn is that washing all of your clothes in one load is a surefire way to turn your entire wardrobe gray. Mr. Black’s garment sprays represent the opposite extreme of this method: hand-spraying each item of clothing and allowing them to dry. Each spray is meant for a specific material: a spray for denim, a spray for leather, and so on. It’s hand-washing minus the washboard. And the river. Learn More
John-Deere-Gator-Gear-Patrol John Deere Midnight Black XUV825i and RSX825i
The recently announced John Deere Midnight Black XUV825i and RSX825i, with their matte paint jobs and black alloy rims, are what you get when you cross a retirement home golf cart with the Batmobile from the Christopher Nolan trilogy. Which, yeah, is pretty fantastic; it’s hard to argue with 50 and 62 horsepower (respectively) and a 3,500-pound winch.
Seiko-TIM-Gear-Patrol-Slide-1- Time is Money: Seiko 5 Sea Urchin Dive Watch
Amid affordable watches, the Seiko 5 line stands tall. This week in Time is Money, Gear Patrol’s new series on watches under $1,000, we examine why. Read This
Hydrapak-Stash-Collapsible-Water-Bottle-Gear-Patrol Hydrapak Stash Collapsible Water Bottle
Hydrapak’s newest water bottle is a grower, not a shower. Its innovative design holds more than the standard Gatorade and, when emptied, the TPU walled bottle collapses to two inches. Available in a variety of colors, the Stash Bottle is dishwasher-safe, naturally anti-fungal and perfect for hiking or camping. $18
adidas-crazylight-boosts-gear-patrol Adidas CrazyLight Boost Shoes
“Light” as in weight — these shoes won’t light up with each step. As much as may disappoint our nine-year-old selves, these basketball shoes feature something better: for the first time, Adidas has incorporated BOOST foam into their basketball sneaks, allowing players to drive to the hole faster and more effortlessly than ever before.
Brooks-England-Toolkit-MT21-gear-patrol Brooks England Toolkit MT21
The Swiss Army knife of bike tools, this gadget’s got everything for when your iron horse gets a limp. Featuring seven allen keys (2mm to 8mm), three screwdrivers, three torx wrenches, one chain tool, a knife and — for at the end of the day — a bottle opener. We’ve converted the price to dollars because, you guessed it, this toolkit ships from across the pond. $84
Brooklyn-Biltong-Jerky-Gear-Patrol Brooklyn Biltong
Similar to jerky, but softer and chewier, biltong is a popular snack food in South Africa. The owner of this burgeoning company brought his renowned family recipe from the rainbow nation to Brooklyn and the snack is anything but invasive. Advertised as a post-workout meal or a quick protein fill, a portion of their earnings goes to feeding Brooklyn’s homeless. Bags are sold individually and in bulk. $9 per bag ()
Knog-Qudos-Action-Light Knog [Qudos] Action Light
This light doesn’t discriminate. It partners with GoPro 2, Hero3/Hero3+, any Sony action camera or any camera with a GoPro mount to help you illuminate your nocturnal escapades. Waterproof up to 40 meters and IP68 tested, it produces 400 lumens of light from three powerful Cree LEDs. And at 150 grams, it won’t off-balance your surf board. $119
MasterCraft-X20-Gear-Patrol MasterCraft X20
When the ocean’s flat, get perfectly shaped, chest-high, customizable waves on demand at all hours of the day from the back of a boat. The X20 is MasterCraft’s first watercraft specifically designed for wakesurfing and wakeboarding. At 20 feet long and available in any color, this water toy pairs 2,000 pounds of ballast with a Generation 2 Surf system to provide a perpetual swell.
absinthe-maison-premier-gear-patrol-slide-4 How to Drink Absinthe Like a Gentleman
Absinthe’s history mirrors the way it’s meant to be prepared: a mix of the misunderstood and the legitimately unusual. For most of its existence, the spirit has been slandered, ostracized and, in rarer cases, revered. It’s been dragged across borders, masqueraded as other liquors, aspersed with hallucination claims and — since its ban was lifted in America in 2007 — the zephyr has been secretly embracing it all. Read this story
Icon-Aircraft-Gear-Patrol ICON A5
The newest sensation in personal aviation is sport flying. ICON has just unveiled their first production aircraft, the A5: nimble, quick and handsome, it’s designed to inspire a passion for flying akin to the passion for driving that surrounds Porsche and Ferrari. We suggest you save up, get your pilot’s license and practice your Top Gun-style high five.
Vandeyk-Bike-Gear-Patrol Vandeyk VDX
Though cyclocross is no new sport, its massive increase in popularity is enough that specialized cyclocross bikes have become exceedingly common. German bike design house Vandeyk has teamed up with the cyclocross experts at Crema Cycles to create their new VDX. The VDX is hand built from high-end True Temper OX Platinum Steel, with a choice of either cantilever or disc breaks. Couple this with its beautiful graphic paint job and you might regret ever getting it muddy. $3,850
B1-Bluetooth-Music-Receiver-Gear-Patrol Audioengine B1 Bluetooth Receiver
After spending potentially thousands on a high fidelity sound system, there’s no point in cheaping out when connecting your audio streaming device. Audioengine’s B1 Bluetooth music receiver allows you to wirelessly connect your phone, computer or MP3 player to your sound system without sacrificing audio quality; its aptX codec designed specifically for high-quality audio. And like all of Audioengine’s other products, it boasts a seriously style-forward design. $189
Jack-Purcell-Cross-Stitch-Gear-Patrol Jack Purcell Cross Stitch Leather
Converse’s iconic Jack Purcell badminton shoe has been updated with a new cross-stitched, soft-tumbled leather construction that features blue stitching, waxed cotton laces and brass eyelets. Though these sneakers aren’t very likely to see the badminton court, they have always been classic summertime wear. $95
Filson-Duffle-Bag-Gear-Patrol Filson Heavy Tin Duffle Bags
Few bags can combine durability and style at a reasonable price point, but Filson’s new line of “Heavy Tin” duffles is up to the task. Made from Bridle Leather that’s been double-waxed for maximum weather resistance, these duffles are likely to hold up to whatever nature (or a careless TSA employee) can throw at it, and look damn good while doing so. $190+
Stone-Coffee-Milk-Stout-Gear-Patrol Stone Brewing Coffee Milk Stout
Lovers of dark beer, rejoice: Stone Brewing has recently released its new Coffee Milk Stout, blending the bitterness of coffee stouts and the sweetness of milk stouts. The new brew should pair well with, well, just about anything — though steak might be a good starting place.
TK-Selects-Rolex-Datejust-Gear-Patrol-LEAD Timekeeping Selects: Rolex Datejust
For the fifth installment of our Timekeeping Selects series with Analog/Shift, we bring you a gem in the form a 1974 Rolex Datejust, hands down the most versatile timepiece a man can own. As always, the series features hand selected, tested, and ready to wear watches each with impeccable authenticity and a great story. $3,400
decrypted-unlocking-phone-value-gear-patrol-lead-full- Decrypted: You Can Legally Unlock Your Cell Phone — Now What?
President Obama just signed the Unlocking Consumer Choice and Wireless Competition Act into law, giving you the right to “unlock” your smartphone and use it with a different carrier once your current plan ends. Here are the ins and outs of the new law, and how to use them to your benefit. Read This Story