Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Owner review for Billy Grips, alias Spondonicals, alias Pot Lifters

Expand Messages
  • rcaffin <r.caffin@acm.org>
    Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters Biographical information Name: Roger Caffin Age: 57 Gender: M Height: 1.66 m (65 ) Weight: 64 kg (140 lb) Email
    Message 1 of 5 , Feb 27, 2003
    • 0 Attachment
      Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters

      Biographical information
      Name: Roger Caffin
      Age: 57
      Gender: M
      Height: 1.66 m (65")
      Weight: 64 kg (140 lb)
      Email address: r.caffin@...
      City, State, Country: Sydney, NSW, Australia
      Date: 10-Feb-03

      Backpacking Background:
      I started bushwalking (the Australian term) when I was about 14 yrs
      old, took up rock climbing and remote exploration walking at
      University, later on took up ski touring and canyoning.
      These days I do all my trips with just my wife. Our preferred walking
      trips in Australia are long ones: about a week in the general Blue
      Mts (East coast of Australia) and Snowy Mts (alpine) regions, and up
      to two months long in Europe and the UK. We favour fairly hard trips
      and prefer to travel fast and light. Our ski touring trips are
      usually 5-7 days long as well, with full packs and tents.
      Serious bushwalking in Australia is done off-track in National Parks.
      This is usually very rough country which the farmers didn't want. The
      authorities do not permit trail-making in National Parks, nor do they
      permit hut making. So everyone carries a tent. There is little chance
      of reprovisioning in any of our Parks, so longer trips require food
      drops.
      We have a large area of ski country here in the winter, but the
      weather tends to hover around freezing a lot of the time. Powder snow
      just doesn't happen. Ski touring here has to cope with frequent wet
      and stormy conditions, which makes gear and clothing selection very
      critical.
      Over the years I have made a lot of my own gear: packs, tents,
      sleeping bags and smaller items. Sometimes this was for cost reasons,
      but often because the gear I wanted was not available here. Having
      discovered that a 20 kg pack (44 lb) is no longer fun, I have become
      a believer in ultra-lightweight walking. I am now trying to promote
      the concept in Australia to the many other walkers of my age. We
      don't have any real UL gear manufacturers here, and a lot of American
      UL gear does not suit our conditions. So, I am developing UL gear
      specifically for our conditions. Hopefully I will find a manufacturer
      for it.
      I am also the maintainer of the aus.bushwalking FAQ web site
      www.bushwalking.org.au/FAQ/.


      Product information for Billy Grips
      Manufacturer: SIGG
      Year of manufacture: pre 1990
      Manufacturer URL: www.sigg.com (registered URL, but not responding)
      Listed weight:
      Weight as delivered : 36 grams (1.27 oz)
      Availability : Available many shops and web sites
      Cost: a few dollars

      Variations
      The unit reviewed here is the one I have, and is made by SIGG of
      Switzerland.
      A nearly identical unit is made by Metal Ware Corporation, is called
      a Pot Lifter, weighs 57 gms (2.0 oz) and sells for about US$2.
      A similar unit but with lots of weight-saving holes is made by
      Backpackers Pantry, is called a Jaws Pot Lifter, weighs 54 gm (1.9
      oz) and sells for around US$9.
      A more fancy unit doing exactly the same thing, but with PVC covered
      handles is made by MSR, is called a Lite Lifter, weighs 28 gm (1.0
      oz) and sells for about $13.

      Product description:
      This is a tool for picking up and handling a hot full cooking pot. It
      is the complete solution to the problem of burnt fingers, spilt
      dinners and dropped pots. No-one should be without one.
      More technically, it is a little like a pair of bent pliers, but
      rather than describe it any further I have attached a picture of it.
      You open the handles, drop the tool over the edge of the pot, close
      the handle, and pick up the pot. The weight of the pot in your hand
      automatically forces the tool closed: little closing effort is
      required.
      You will note in the diagram that there is a small notch in the jaws
      where the arrow points, right near the hinge (the black dot). Most
      pots have some sort of reinforced rim: a curled edge or similar. This
      notch goes over that rim, and it means the pot is not going to slip
      out of the grips even if you hold them loosely. The other brands have
      this notch in one form or another too.

      Performance
      You pick the grips up with one hand and open them. You can do this
      either by holding the lower lever and pushing the top lever up with
      your thumb, or by holding the upper lever and letting the lower one
      drop. Either way, with the grips now open, you put them over the edge
      of the pot and close your hand. You now have the pot firmly held. You
      can pick it up, tilt it, pour it, stir it or whatever, with complete
      safety. Very little force is required: there is a lot of leverage in
      the design.
      The one thing you do not do with these grips is leave them attached
      to the pot while cooking. This is because the very hot air (or
      flames) from the stove or fire comes up the side of the pot and will
      heat the grips. Then you suddenly find they are too hot to handle.
      I usually hold the pot with the grips while I am stirring the
      contents, then I remove the grips, put the lid back on the pot and
      the grips on the lid. Since the lid I use is just a flat sheet of
      very light aluminium it could slide off the pot, but the weight of
      the grips keeps the lid in place and helps it seal the steam in.
      Keeping the grips there means I know where they will be when I want
      to whisk the pot off the stove quickly: no groping around the floor
      of the tent.

      Origin
      I do not know the origin of this wonderful tool. I do know that
      versions made from two bits of bent fencing wire were around in
      Australia possibly before WW II, and were subsequently known
      as "spondonicals", for reasons given at the end of this review.
      Today they are generally called "Billy Grips" in Australia, but Pot
      Lifter or Pot Holder will do. "Billy" is an Australian term for an
      old-fashioned cooking pot bearing a startling resemblance to a large
      tin can, with a handle made from a curved bit of fencing wire. The
      reader is left to deduce the origin of that.

      Likes:
      Bombproof
      Light
      Cheap

      Dislikes:
      None

      Would I buy another one?
      Immediately. As it is, I have two but only take one with me.

      Spondonicals
      It's from a Three Stooges movie where they are performing a surgical
      operation. Larry (the guy with the straight hair anyhow) is the
      surgeon and the other two are helpers.
      Larry: "anaesthetic"
      Helper passes large rubber mallet, Larry dongs patient on head.
      Larry: "scalpel"
      Helper (passes scalpel): "scalpel"
      Larry: "scissors"
      Helper (passes scissors): "scissors"
      Larry: "spondonical"
      Helpers:"spondonical?!" (rummage frantically through piles of
      instruments)
      The original wire ones LOOKED like a surgical instrument for opening
      incisions or holding slippery bits of intestines.
    • Andrew Priest
      ... Hi Thanks Roger for your Owner s Review. Do not worry if nothing happens with it for a few days. All our editors are volunteers and your report will be
      Message 2 of 5 , Feb 27, 2003
      • 0 Attachment
        At 06:01 PM 27/02/2003, you wrote:
        >Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters
        >
        >Biographical information
        >Name: Roger Caffin

        Hi

        Thanks Roger for your Owner's Review. Do not worry if nothing happens with
        it for a few days. All our editors are volunteers and your report will be
        subject to an official edit within five days. If you have not had a
        response from an Edit Moderator via the list within this timeframe, please
        let me know directly at apriest@....

        You may receive edits or comments from other members of the group. These
        edits and comments, while not official, should be considered carefully, and
        if you find them substantial, revise and re-post your review. Incorporating
        member edits and re-posting to the list will usually result in a better
        review, as well as making things easier for the official editor. Please put
        REPOST at the start of your re-post, if you take this route.

        If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to ask via the
        list or contact me directly.

        Regards
        Andrew Priest
        Chief Edit Moderator


        --
        http://BackpackGearTest.org : The most comprehensive interactive gear
        reviews and tests on the planet


        [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
      • Alex Tweedly
        At 10:01 27/02/2003 +0000, rcaffin wrote: Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters Product information for Billy Grips Manufacturer: SIGG
        Message 3 of 5 , Feb 27, 2003
        • 0 Attachment
          At 10:01 27/02/2003 +0000, rcaffin <r.caffin@...> wrote:
          Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters

          Product information for Billy Grips
          Manufacturer: SIGG
          Year of manufacture: pre 1990
          Manufacturer URL: www.sigg.com (registered URL, but not responding)

          sigg.com is registered to General Electric, Princeton, NJ. (Though I can't
          think why :-)

          SIGG of Switzerland are www.sigg.ch - but the website doesn't mention this
          item :-(

          -- Alex.

          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        • Andrew Priest
          ... Hi Alex I have the Trangia ones, actually I have two as Trangia packed two with the stove. It can be seen, in action on the front page at
          Message 4 of 5 , Feb 27, 2003
          • 0 Attachment
            At 08:17 AM 28/02/2003, you wrote:
            >At 10:01 27/02/2003 +0000, rcaffin <r.caffin@...> wrote:
            >Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters
            >
            >SIGG of Switzerland are www.sigg.ch - but the website doesn't mention this
            >item :-(

            Hi Alex

            I have the Trangia ones, actually I have two as Trangia packed two with the
            stove. It can be seen, in action on the front page at http://www.trangia.se .

            Cheers
            Andrew

            --
            http://BackpackGearTest.org : The most comprehensive interactive gear
            reviews and tests on the planet


            [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
          • Andrew Priest
            ... EDIT: Can you please include Sigg in your heading. For the readers and the search engines. ... EDIT: You have been caught in the revisiting of the
            Message 5 of 5 , Mar 2, 2003
            • 0 Attachment
              At 06:01 PM 27/02/2003, you wrote:
              >Owner Review of Billy Grips or Pot Lifters

              EDIT:> Can you please include "Sigg" in your heading. For the readers and
              the search engines.


              >Biographical information
              >
              >Backpacking Background:
              >I started bushwalking (the Australian term) when I was about 14 yrs
              >old, took up rock climbing and remote exploration walking at
              >University, later on took up ski touring and canyoning.
              >These days I do all my trips with just my wife. Our preferred walking
              >trips in Australia are long ones: about a week in the general Blue
              >Mts (East coast of Australia) and Snowy Mts (alpine) regions, and up
              >to two months long in Europe and the UK. We favour fairly hard trips
              >and prefer to travel fast and light. Our ski touring trips are
              >usually 5-7 days long as well, with full packs and tents.
              >Serious bushwalking in Australia is done off-track in National Parks.
              >This is usually very rough country which the farmers didn't want. The
              >authorities do not permit trail-making in National Parks, nor do they
              >permit hut making. So everyone carries a tent. There is little chance
              >of reprovisioning in any of our Parks, so longer trips require food
              >drops.
              >We have a large area of ski country here in the winter, but the
              >weather tends to hover around freezing a lot of the time. Powder snow
              >just doesn't happen. Ski touring here has to cope with frequent wet
              >and stormy conditions, which makes gear and clothing selection very
              >critical.
              >Over the years I have made a lot of my own gear: packs, tents,
              >sleeping bags and smaller items. Sometimes this was for cost reasons,
              >but often because the gear I wanted was not available here. Having
              >discovered that a 20 kg pack (44 lb) is no longer fun, I have become
              >a believer in ultra-lightweight walking. I am now trying to promote
              >the concept in Australia to the many other walkers of my age. We
              >don't have any real UL gear manufacturers here, and a lot of American
              >UL gear does not suit our conditions. So, I am developing UL gear
              >specifically for our conditions. Hopefully I will find a manufacturer
              >for it.
              >I am also the maintainer of the aus.bushwalking FAQ web site
              >www.bushwalking.org.au/FAQ/.

              EDIT:> You have been caught in the revisiting of the policy on bios, that
              is yours is two long. The draft policy on bios is that your "backpacking
              background should be no longer than one paragraph with one or two sentences
              on experience and one or two sentences on style. In your experience section
              please BRIEFLY convey an idea of how long you have been backpacking, maybe
              some comment on specific backpacking experience and in what general areas.
              In the second part of your paragraph, you should comment on your
              backpacking style, i.e., provide an idea of your sleeping system - tent vs.
              hammock. vs tarp etc and your weight carried, lightweight, ultralight, heavy.

              Note this applies to your Backpacking Background which is found in your
              Personal Biographical Information section of the review or report. If you
              feel it is appropriate to give more detail, as it will be germane to your
              review or report, then this should be done in the "Field Information"
              section of your review or report as allowed for in the Survival Guide."

              Can you please edit accordingly.

              >Manufacturer URL: www.sigg.com (registered URL, but not responding)

              EDIT:> http://www.sigg.ch works ok.

              >Listed weight:

              EDIT:> Not available (if not known)

              >Weight as delivered : 36 grams (1.27 oz)
              >Availability : Available many shops and web sites

              EDIT:> Availability is not required.

              >Cost: a few dollars

              EDIT:> Only MSRP if known, otherwise no cost information.


              >Variations
              >The unit reviewed here is the one I have, and is made by SIGG of
              >Switzerland.
              >A nearly identical unit is made by Metal Ware Corporation, is called
              >a Pot Lifter, weighs 57 gms (2.0 oz) and sells for about US$2.
              >A similar unit but with lots of weight-saving holes is made by
              >Backpackers Pantry, is called a Jaws Pot Lifter, weighs 54 gm (1.9
              >oz) and sells for around US$9.
              >A more fancy unit doing exactly the same thing, but with PVC covered
              >handles is made by MSR, is called a Lite Lifter, weighs 28 gm (1.0
              >oz) and sells for about $13.

              EDIT:> See previous comment on cost information. Please remove.

              >Product description:
              >No-one should be without one.

              EDIT:> While I agree with you (I have the Trangia ones) comments such as
              this are generally not acceptable. We prefer the reviews to stand on their
              own and for the reader to make their own judgement as to suitability for
              their own kit.

              >You open the handles, drop the tool over the edge of the pot, close

              EDIT:> As previous comment, you need to shift the focus from "you" to
              "I." That is personalise the review as to your experience or actions,
              letting the reader make their own judgements as to what they will do.

              >the handle, and pick up the pot. The weight of the pot in your hand
              >automatically forces the tool closed: little closing effort is
              >required.

              EDIT:> Space required here.

              >The other brands have this notch in one form or another too.

              EDIT:> Your review should focus on the Sigg billy grips. Comments on other
              products (other than your opening points) are really not appropriate.

              >Performance
              >You pick the grips up with one hand and open them. You can do this
              >either by holding the lower lever and pushing the top lever up with
              >your thumb, or by holding the upper lever and letting the lower one
              >drop. Either way, with the grips now open, you put them over the edge
              >of the pot and close your hand. You now have the pot firmly held. You
              >can pick it up, tilt it, pour it, stir it or whatever, with complete
              >safety. Very little force is required: there is a lot of leverage in
              >the design.

              EDIT:> Roger this paragraph needs to become a personal focus, rather than a
              you focus.

              >The one thing you do not do with these grips is leave them attached
              >to the pot while cooking.

              EDIT:> Please personalise.

              >This is because the very hot air (or
              >flames) from the stove or fire comes up the side of the pot and will
              >heat the grips. Then you suddenly find they are too hot to handle.

              EDIT:> Please personalise.

              Hi Roger

              An interesting review. I do have some edits requiring your attention. Once
              done, can you please repost with "REPOST" in the subject line for final
              approval and uploading.

              Thanks
              Andrew

              --
              http://BackpackGearTest.org : The most comprehensive interactive gear
              reviews and tests on the planet


              [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.