1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

The common clamshell RFID wallet review

Discussion in 'Gear Reviews' started by tirod, May 16, 2017.

  1. tirod

    tirod Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2006
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    27
    You've seen the everywhere, in "Seen on TV" shops or in that aisle at the big 24/7 discount box store. The aluminum stamped pocket wallet with plastic snap closure and tiny file folder dividers inside. The major feature hawked in the packaging is that it's RFID resistant - which is an issue of passing importance as credit cards change and evolve.

    What's it like as a wallet, tho? It's an all metal clamshell, painted. That means it has a finite capacity, and no flexibility in shape or expansion. Mine's smooth, some come ribbed and they resemble a tiny miniature Haliburton suitcase from the days of early air travel. Inside is a accordion separator to have a pocket for each card. The closure is molded plastic and closes with a snap.

    In use, tho, the smooth painted surface is difficult to grasp and lacking any friction slides around quite a bit. It's come out of my pocket sitting, which for the most part never happens for me with anything except one or two small AAA clipped flashlights. Since it is a slick surface I have also dropped it and found it hit the floor with enough force to pop open and jar the cards inside enough to protrude. I'd hate to do that on a sidewalk in windy weather.

    That also goes to the divider inside - as it opens up the cards are separate and easy to see and access. The divider allows them to slip in and out with little friction, which is good - unless it pops open and you didn't want them to. Capacity allows up to eight cards and a few folded bills for me, more than that and it would be overstuffed which it won't tolerate by the latch not engaging.

    For it's limited capacity tho, the overall size is larger than the leather wallet it replaced. It's about my thumb width longer and wider than the average card in both directions, which is contrary to the whole point. A minimal should keep the form factor to well, the minimum, and this one leaves a lot of wasted space.

    For a wallet in the $5 to $10 class, it's not a total waste of money but there are better - the old school leather wallets some of us are trying to dump would be preferable. I bought this a few years back when they were already less than new and it seems there's good reasons we don't see them in minimal wallet pic threads or on blogs.

    FWIW you didn't miss anything.
     
    ripjack13 likes this.
  2. ripjack13

    ripjack13 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2015
    Messages:
    207
    Likes Received:
    402
    Could you, Lightly sand the surface to get rid the shine and spray it with some of the rubber spray. Like the kind you dip tools into.
    Or...
    Dremel an image on both sides for grip.
     
  3. HardToHandle

    HardToHandle Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2016
    Messages:
    234
    Likes Received:
    145
    I have a Vanquest RFID-defeat wallet that works well for me. My testing indicates if does stop proximity cards and passive RFID from working. However, it sets off the airport magnetometers, be warned.
     
  4. tirod

    tirod Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2006
    Messages:
    34
    Likes Received:
    27
    I considered that the spray on coatings could be used. One disadvantage is that it would be extremely grippy and make getting the wallet out more difficult than needed. The standard in friction seems to be leather - it's considered "just right." Another issue is that given time and wear, the stuff rubs off. Sanding it would bring it back to bare metal so if a particular brush finish was chosen it would help. However, the inexpensive aluminum used wouldn't be corrosion protected so it would constantly have black aluminum oxide rubbing off onto your clothes and hands. That's why most aluminums are anodized to prevent it.

    It gets complicated. And our understanding of leather, it's working properties, etc, shows some particularly superior traits. That's why we all carry a leather clamshell of one kind or another.
     
    ripjack13 likes this.
  5. John Scalzi

    John Scalzi Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2012
    Messages:
    31
    Likes Received:
    76
    Just received a Big Skinny RFID Blocking Curve Bifold as an advanced father's day gift. It's my second one.
    Since I am a front pocket wallet carrier, it can't be beat for its thinness and capacity.