I ran into the owner at a gun show about six months ago, where he was demonstrating his newest product, the Kodiak model. After playing with it in his booth for a few minutes, I laid down cash and picked one up.
|Close up of the various strands in the material.|
So, how good is it really? Well, we've already discussed that I'm hard on gear. This band has spent the past six or so months on my wrist or my backpack, and shows almost no signs of wear. It's had gasoline, old oil, and engine sludge on it, and shows no deterioration.
|My personal Kodiak after months of wear.|
The striker and ferro bar work rather well, especially once you get the stroke figured out. (Practice with all your gear. You sink to the level of your training, experience, and practice, rather than rising to the occasion.) Jute happens to be one of my favorite tinders, and this jute catches just as well as any other.
This does lead to the one weakness of the band, though: It's not waterproof. I had some concern about whether the jute would light when wet, so I took a spare piece of the cord material that I got from Outdoor Element and set up a test.
- I sealed up both ends, exactly as they do in the actual product.
- I then dunked it in water for a three count (as if I'd dropped something in a body of water and then retrieved it).
- I pulled the jute immediately afterward, but was unable to get it to light with a match.
Overall, I give the Kodiak 4 stars out of 5. It's an innovative idea, I like it, and will continue to wear mine, but I really wish there was a solution to the tinder problem.
Outdoor Element also makes other models of bracelets if the Kodiak isn't up to your needs.
(FTC Disclaimer: As I said above, I shelled out my own shekels for this.)