Thursday, November 08, 2007

Greatest Gear Inventions

It’s that time of year again when all of the new winter gear is out…catalogs are circulating, magazine buyer’s guide are written, and the ‘new-gear’ jones is in full swing. We’ve seen everything from reverse-camber twins proliferating the ski scene, to ProShell everything, to truly interchangeable goggles lenses, and the list goes on and on.

All this new gear got me thinking. I once saw a show on A&E about inventions that have had the greatest effect on mankind (as a side note they cited Gutenburg’s invention of the printing press as the greatest invention).
This has really gotten me thinking about gear innovations. What is the greatest gear invention or innovation? What has had the farthest reaching impact? A swirl of thoughts spun around in my head…"shaped skis, AT bindings, Camalots, canister stoves, goggles with fans, Primaloft…”.

I could be wrong but to me it seems like the invention with the farthest reaching impact would have to be GORE-TEX. GORE-TEX fabrics are in just every piece of gear they can be put in. GORE really got the ball moving on waterproof-breathable fabrics. Every single company is trying to emulate (or copy) what GORE has created. This is definitely a point of controversy and is definitely up for debate.

What do you think is the greatest gear invention (innovation) that has had the farthest reaching impact on the outdoor industry?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Polypropylene changed clothing's bulk and insulation capabilities when wet, and was invented in the 1950s. The idea of using synthetic materials for outdoor clothing is an obvious influence on the creation of fleece (and unfortuantely, the retina-burning Patagonia colors of the 1980s). The final reason this one has my vote is the cost. Big box stores sell wicking clothing for less than the outdoor shops (no comment on quality).

11/09/2007 8:29 AM

Blogger Oscar T Grouch said...

Well when i first read this i was going to say the Ti spork, but after think about it for a while you are most likely correct with Gore-Tex. I still think the Ti spork should be pretty high on the list though.

11/11/2007 8:21 PM

Blogger climbinskier said...

Anon-you could be write with polypropylene.

Oscar-the Ti spork is definitely up there.

Anyone else feel have an opinion?

11/12/2007 8:51 PM


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