Monday, March 22, 2010

Spending money where it makes a difference

Most of the time I think spending extra to buy light and high quality stuff is a wise move, but sometimes I see products that are just ridiculously priced and with no real benefit or advantage compared to a lower priced one.

Case in point, I stopped by the sports store XXL today to buy some shoes and while standing in line I remembered needing a long handled spoon, and having seen one earlier in the hiking/backpacking setion of the store. I had planned to get one from BPL, but I don't think they'll ever get back in stock? Well, I went to find it and the first thing I saw was a "STS Titan long spoon" from Sea to Summit with a price tag of 239 norwegian kroner! (40 USD). I was thinking "ah, ok, that sort of explains why I haven't picked one up earlier", and was about to leave when I saw a similar model from the same manufacturer made out of "ultralight hard anodised aircraft alloy" at a price of 89 kroner (15 USD), and it looked just as great and I of course bought it.

Why on earth would I want to spend 25 USD extra on the ti version to save 5 grams in weight? The aircraft alloy (aluminium) version will of course be just as durable and the weight difference is miniscule. I really hope people don't buy invest in this stuff and instead spend their money one one of the big three (shelter, pack, sleeping bag) to get their base weight down.

Well, anyhow, rant over. I really like the spoon and I think it will make it a lot easier to get the last good bits out of the "Real Turmat" bags. Oh, and I like the small carabiner that comes with it. Probably smart to use it to clip the spoon to the pack or something so it won't be lost, or to use for other purposes, for instance hanging stuff from a tarp ridgeline.


  1. One huge advantage that might make titanium worth it in Scandinavia, is that it has a very low thermal conductivity. Especially compared to aluminium. So although it makes for bad pans, a spoon that you can use in minus 30 celsius without having it freeze bits of skin off your hands and lips might be worth the cash to some people.

    Of course that's kind of a rare occurrence, and I imagine the price difference is just due to the fact that titanium is sexy and aluminium isn't.

  2. Did the same in Gothenburg some weeks ago. Happy with the nice price for an almost similar product. I had been thinking abt a long handed spon since my last trip with Real food. And to make my friend extra confused I drilled a lot of holes in the handle :-)

  3. I lost mine when I shot the Optimus video :/ They don't have the Sea to Summit spoon here in town, so I likely need to order them from somewhere. So for the moment it is back to the Spork.

  4. Tomas: the low thermal conductivity is definitely a plus, I didn't think about that, but it isn't an issue for me since I almost never hike during winter.

  5. These spoons are awesome. Good price and the spoon shape is spot-on for scraping freezer bags clean of every morsel. I liked mine so much I bought two (one long, one short - for when I'm planning on eating out of the pot).

  6. I just bought one, literally, yesterday because I got sick of my old spork not being long enough to eat food out of a bag. That said, as is so often the case in Norway (cue story about lasagne and coke in Oslo costing me £18), it seems more expensive there, Thomas - mine was £11 I think.