I am a huge fan of converged devices. If any gadget or doo-dad can serve more than one purpose, I am ALL over it. PDA phones are a great example. Love them to death… I also really like the new SEV Fleece 4.0. Its just freakin’ awesome! Honestly, its a long way from the Sport TEC 2.5 that I got back in 2004. I didn’t like that jacket at all. it didn’t breathe well, was very thin, and was very uncomfortable to wear in humid or rainy weather…thing kept sticking to your skin. But again, the new SEV Fleece 4.0…bucu cool and worth every penny.
Anyway, when its too warm to wear the SEV Fleece 4.0, I like to carry my stuff around in what is popularly called a fanny pack (or a bum bag in the UK). I have yet to find one that really fits my most essential gear. Let’s see how the Urban tool Hip Holster holds up to scrutiny.
I have a billfold that I carry as a wallet. Its got my credit/ID/information cards, cash, checkbook, and a couple of other items in it. Its pretty big. I also carry a PDA phone (Samsung Blackjack I at the moment), and a large key ring that has keys and keyless entry system fobs for both my cars.
I used, or tried to use this bag for a couple of days. For me, it was a horrible failure… My billfold doesn’t have a snowball’s chance of fitting in ANY of the available pockets. Its just too wide. The material is stretchy enough that its thickness wasn’t a problem, but I just couldn’t get it in even the biggest pocket. The cell phone pocket is really meant for your standard candy bar style cell phone and not some of the PDA phones that I have. I was able to get my wife’s StarTrek (Cingular 3125) in it, but even that was a stretch.
There are a few items that I really must have with me at all times while I am out and about:
The HipHolster had a really hard time holding my phone and wallet/billfold. It handled my large keys ok, but they tended to hang off the retractable fob that it has all the way down to my knees. Yes, I could have taken just the cash and credit/debit cards I wanted, but I don’t like separating my wallet contents from my wallet. I can lose things easily if I’m not careful…
The holster tie for your leg was also a big disappointment. When Urban Tool said "holster" they weren’t kidding. The bag reminds me of a gun holster from the Wild West, especially with the tie that it uses to secure it to your leg. A completely detached piece of elastic can be used to tie the bag to your right leg. The tie never held things well, loosened often for me, and when I did make it tight, made my leg fall asleep. I honestly don’t think the design works if you carry anything of weight. If you do, the bag tends to flop all over the place and get in the way.
The bag also makes poor use of available space. It comes with a secret pocket that could very easily hold a lot more than it does. A couple other pieces of liner, and a well placed zipper, and this could have been a really awesome bag. Oh well…
Long story short, this bag was a huge disappointment for me. I was really hoping that I would be something that worked well for my stuff and would allow me to carry what I needed during the warmer months; but it just wasn’t the case. The bag hung awkwardly, wouldn’t hold the stuff I wanted it to hold, and the tie made my leg fall asleep. I also think its a bit on the pricey side for what it does. At $50 bucks, its a bit much for a nylon, stretchy fanny pack.
MSRP: The Urban Tool Hip Holster can be purchased here for $49.95. Shipping and handling is $10
What I liked: Unique design, lots of pockets
What needs improvement: The pockets are too small and the bag doesn’t make use of all available space to allow users to hold larger items (like my billfold and PDA phones). The bag is also a bit pricey for what it does and for what it is made of.