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Civilian Lab Kevlar Clip Wallet **REVIEW**

Discussion in 'Gear Reviews' started by bbbshrimp, Oct 10, 2006.

  1. amboose

    amboose Loaded Pockets

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    Many thanks for this great review. Purchased one and it helped when I needed to manoeveur on my back. That's when I clipped the wallet up front on my pants.
     
  2. JonSidneyB
    • Administrator

    JonSidneyB Uber Prepared
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    Bump....

    Trying to get Civilian Lab more noticed now that I am carrying their items to support the forum.
     
  3. mahler9

    mahler9 Banned

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    Clipping a bulky wallet like that to the outside of your pants? Anyone else think that's a, I dunno, bad idea?

    Maybe they can make a smaller, more pedestrian version with Kevlar. It's a unique material that no one else is using right now for wallets.
     
  4. brianwhynot

    brianwhynot Loaded Pockets

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    Anyone know if it blocks RFID?
     
  5. Valerian

    Valerian Tea-powered admin

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    Kevlar? I don't think so. AFAIK, things need to be entirely encased in (electrically conductive) metal to be shielded.
     
  6. Gorbag

    Gorbag Loaded Pockets

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    If you're worried about RFID blocking, the mylar from balloons works pretty well.

    Yay, Civilian Labs! Cool stuff.
     
  7. crossroads

    crossroads Empty Pockets

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    Alrighty, since this thread is already here, I thought I'd put my review of a Civilian Labs Rewind Duo Wallet here as well.

    First impressions is that it is a very nice wallet, both aesthetically and quality-wise. The packaging is attractive, and still retains the cute bunny pictures mentioned by bbbshrimp :). What is included is the wallet, the Gearkeeper Retractor and a leather belt loop for the belt. The packaging states that the wallet was designed in the USA and made in China, for those who care.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    As indicated by the packaging, the sizes are 4 1/4" X 3" X 1/2". When I measured it with all my cards and ID, it measured 4 1/2" X 3" X 3/4". Not bad; bit strange why it is longer than stated on packaging though :shrug:. Maybe my measuring tape is off. When open, the length of the wallet reaches 8 1/2".

    [​IMG] [​IMG]

    This is a trifold wallet, and comes with two magnetic snaps to hold it together, unlike the kevlar version, which uses velcro. One of the main reasons I chose the Rewind Duo was because I didn't want the velcro, as it is simply too loud when opening and closing, bound to get attention. The magnetic snaps feel quite secure, and add very little to the overall thickness (approx less than half an inch). Something that bugged me initially was that a simple flip close would not immediately result in both snaps coming together properly. Once you get used to it, you can feel for how they will close properly. This issue in itself was discovered through nitpicking anyway, and should not bother anyone *too* much, if at all. UPDATE: I've mastered the art of magnetic snap closing after a few days use. No more issues. :)

    The "action leather" appears to be perforated leather, and is allegedly resistant to water and sweat damage. I did a very amateurish test by turning on a tap (at a reasonably strong pressure to be honest) and passing the wallet through the running water for less than a second, with the back of the wallet facing up. Water did get through, but only wetting my 5 dollar note. The note itself provided further water protection to the wallet :). The perforations also allowed the wallet to dry extremely quickly, and the leather seems fine. I think I'll have to update this review in a month or two to further comment on the leather quality, but IMO it is high quality stuff.

    [​IMG]

    The back of the wallet comes with a "fuel gauge", which is just a strip of clear plastic on the back of the wallet, allowing you to seem your notes without opening the wallet. However, you will have to stagger your notes, in order to see what you have. The stitching around this area is not straight, and does disturb the overall high level of quality this wallet initially gives off (again, nitpicking). Don't get me wrong however; I am not afraid of it falling apart. Personally, I could have done without this fuel gauge. I understand the logic behind putting in this feature (not letting potential thieves see your wallet's insides), and it is innovative and also does its job. However, IMO, I could have done without it. YMMV.

    [​IMG]

    The packaging specifically points out the "reinforced loop stitching" of the wallet, which is designed to be hooked onto by the Gearkeeper Retractor. I actually do not plan on using the two of them together, but I did again do some amateurish tests on the loop, which mainly consisted of pulling it hard. I am glad that it did not break; this reinforced loop stitching feels extremely secure. If I did use the retractor with the wallet, I wouldn't worry about the stitching breaking at all. It would have been rather awkward for Civilian Lab if if I, a relatively small guy, had ripped it out :laugh:.

    [​IMG]

    The ID window uses "micro mesh". My last wallet had a plastic window, and it had rubbed off my name on my unlaminated student ID card. I am glad that this micro mesh will not do the same. It does not stick to the card, and feels quite strong, but still flexible. Stitching around this area is straight and consistent, and I am confident it will not break from too many cards.

    [​IMG]

    There are three pockets in the center of the wallet, another three at the end, and one tiny one at the start. The pockets at the end are designed for bank cards. All the stitching on the center and end sections look secure, and I am not worried at all about durability.

    Center:
    [​IMG]

    End:
    [​IMG]

    However, the small one seems to have been sewn a bit more halfheartedly. It is marketed as a little pocket for a spare key. It is designed in such a way that half of it is sewn, but the other half is open, leaving a little pocket. I attempted to store two $2 coins in it (size of a penny, about twice as thick). One of the coins slipped into the sewn area, while the other was hanging around the unsewn part. They are in no danger of falling out when the wallet is closed, but once opened, the coin at the unsewn part flew out rather easily, while the other was still lodged inside. I had to shake the wallet a few times to get the coin out; attempting to open up the pocket will result in the sewn part stretching dangerously. I know it is marketed as just a key pocket, but I still wish Civilian Lab could have strengthened this part of the wallet, even though it is a minor detail.

    [​IMG] [​IMG] [​IMG]

    Other than that, I am very impressed with the wallet, given its price of US$35.88 at Jon's site here. If you factor in the cost of the Gearkeeper Retractor, which is around US$14 or so (out of stock item at JSB's doesn't show price :knuppel2:), it makes it cheaper than the Action Leather Wallet with Clip. So, if you're interested in a high quality, low cost, small trifold without a clip, I'd say this is your best bet. Gearkeeper Retractor option is just icing on the cake. O0

    Icing that I will be licking off for use with my keyring setup :p.

    Further impressions: I only had one business card that could fit in the credit card slots :thumbsdown:; the rest were too wide. Marc's card is used as an example.

    [​IMG]

    The leather belt loop is not made to the same standard as the wallet, so if someone attempts to steal your wallet with the retractor attached, and pulls enough so that there is no more cable available, I'm not sure whether the belt loop would hold. But then again, I don't use the retractor.

    [​IMG]

    Obviously, pics are now up.
     
  8. Eeyore

    Eeyore Loaded Pockets

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    I carried a variation of this wallet for over a year. The reel was built in to the wallet. I liked the extra piece of mind it gave me while overseas. Unfortunately, the leather belt loop broke off within a few short months. I then started attaching the carabiner to the belt loop of my pants. In another 9 months of almost daily use, the cable broke. The wallet itself, however, looked almost new.

    I decided to try something new. My current replacement is the WalletSafe Tri-fold Travel Wallet by PacSafe. It dose look a bit geeky but so far has been holding great.

    http://www.pacsafe.com/www/index.php?_room=3&_action=detail&id=15
     
  9. jrbrangi

    jrbrangi Loaded Pockets

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    odd question, is this a true trifold? is the flap with the magnet just for securing it closed or do the bills actually extend into this section of the wallet? only reason is that since I am insane, I hate when bills are all bent up from being in a trifold.
     
  10. crossroads

    crossroads Empty Pockets

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    I can't exactly answer your question, because, unless you're Australian, the size of your dollar bills will be different to Australian bills. One of my pics (one with the Wharcom) in the review illustrates that they can be positioned in the middle in such a way as to be all bent up. I think the more likely answer would be yes, the bills do extend into that section.
     
  11. jrbrangi

    jrbrangi Loaded Pockets

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    thanks, I still may go for it though. for those with the clip version, when clipped in front pocket is it so bulky that you can't hold anything else in the pocket? ie keys, phone etc.
     
  12. xx13xx

    xx13xx Loaded Pockets

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    I have been carrying the cable wallet for awhile and think its probably one of the best wallets I have ever had. I did break one cable reel already and i lost the leather loop a couple of days after I got the wallet, but other than that she is holding up very nicely. Also if you break a reel they sell them seperately for like $5 so its no big deal.
     
  13. jrbrangi

    jrbrangi Loaded Pockets

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    yea, still up in the air as to which one, can you get the regular leather version they have without the cash window in rewind setup? or is it missing the sewn in loop. Not a fan of the little cash window.
     
  14. xx13xx

    xx13xx Loaded Pockets

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    honestly cash window is dumb but its not really that noticeable its maybe 2 inches long and like a 1/4 inch wide lol i never even look at it, cause i know there is no money in there
     
  15. Bierkameel

    Bierkameel Loaded Pockets

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    Good review and good pics, just ordered the kevlar version.
    I was looking for a decent wallet :)
     
  16. mercop

    mercop Empty Pockets

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    I ordered one of these the other day after stumbling across the site. After some of the mixed reviews here I am very interested in getting it and trying it out. For about the last 10 years I have been carrying a little black Eagle Industries wallet given to me by John Carver the owner of Eagle. It is a great piece of gear. The problem is that I leave my house three days a week in PT shorts from the gym with my 38 in a belly band and some shorts don't have pockets and the ones that do have small ones. I needed a way to put my wallet and this looks like a great solution. My only issue looking at it is that I wish the clip was blacktikewl instead of shiny. But that is just my tactical OCD :idiot2: Not worried about the room for cash since I always carry my money in a Titanium money clip made by A&M Draper. The wallet is just for tossing during a robbery attempt if I need to get my gun.

    One more thing about the pocket clip, to me and every other police and some criminals in the world it screams badge. Don't be surprised if you get some strange looks or someone asks you if you are "on the job". Just wanted everyone to be aware of that since they are exactly the same clips found on most badge holders.

    I will report back on the wallet.- George