Wet gloves suck! OK, so that's not as bad as wiggling into wet swim trunks or pulling on damp long underwear, but sliding your hands into wet work, paddling or ski gloves still rates pretty high on the undesirable scale, especially if the weather is chilly. Which is why testing a new product designed to dry gloves, dubbed "Glove Buddie," intrigued us.
The system relies on your vehicle's air vents -- well, one vent to be exact -- to dry even a thick glove in 15 to 30 minutes. Attaching is very simple. Using two clips that you press or twist into place between the vent's grill openings, the rubber flange is secured firmly to the vent by pulling on the cord loop attached to the clips. A simple cord-lock holds the system in place. The wrist opening of the glove is then attached to the Glove Buddie using a small bungee cord. As you are driving, you run the vent on low, medium or high air volume, and on whatever air temperature you can tolerate.
We tested paddling gloves, wet work gloves, damp ski gloves, and all dried very quickly. Attaching and detaching the Glove Buddie from a car or truck vent (we tested on both a Ford truck and a Honda CRV) was a snap.
What our testers most liked about the system was the ability to begin drying gear quickly the minute they got into their vehicle. No waiting around until they got home. The Glove Buddie is a very useful tool as well if you are making multiple paddling runs during the day, with drive time in between each run -- make use of the drive by drying out your gloves.
However, we did wonder why only one Glove Buddie? After all, most trucks and vehicles come with sufficient vents to accommodate two Glove Buddies, meaning you can dry a pair of gloves in one shot. That also would mean drying is much more efficient and a pair of gloves can be dried in a much shorter drive time. Knowing that with moisture being evaporated from even one glove, the inside vehicle environment does get a bit steamy, we can imagine that two gloves drying might create a tropical forest environment inside the car. Either way, driving with the windows cracked is essential, which a snow or rain storm could make less than tolerable.
Also, this system only makes sense if you spend time in your vehicle in between trips, on your way home after an outing, or are using a vehicle during your camping, paddling or ski trip to run errands when you can double up driving and drying time. Just running a vehicle engine to provide drying power for gloves is a colossal waste of energy and resources, not to mention bad for the air we breathe.
And, finally, the Glove Buddie really is a one-person dog. Trying to dry two or three pair of gloves during a drive just ain't gonna happen -- unless you like spending hours in your car.
All the quibbles aside though, our testers aren't about to give up their Glove Buddies -- one even has it sitting in a gear bag in his truck -- for those times when wet gloves just aren't an acceptable alternative.
SNEWSÂ® Rating: 3.5 hands clapping (1 to 5 hands clapping possible, with 5 clapping hands representing functional and design perfection)
Suggested Retail: $19.95
For more information:www.glovebuddie.com (website down until June 7, 2005) or call 503-622-3979