I am told by experienced testers not to be put off by the Newbie limit, and
apply for items to test which I feel I can add value to, by testing for
aspects that others may not have considered.
So, with the above in mind, I have pleasure in submitting an application to
test the Petzl Tikka XP.
Application to test the Petzl Tikka XP
I have read and understood the current requirements in the Survival Guide
(version v. 1202 as of 8.5.05) and I agree to comply with all these
requirements as a tester. I also have signed a tester agreement which is on
file with Mr. Shane Steinkamp dated 7th March, 2005 and has been
acknowledged by Stephanie Martin on the 27th April, 2005.
Name: Ralph Ditton
Height: 1. 76 m (174 lb)
City: Perth, Western Australia.
I only took up backpacking seriously some four years ago. I have been
walking the Bibbulmun Track in sections. My goal is to complete the 964 km
(603 mi) and become an end to end walker. So far I have completed
approximately two-thirds of the Track from North to South, and a quarter in
the opposite direction.
I have evolved from carrying a heavyweight load-approximately 28 kg, (62 lb)
including food and water-to being a midweight backpacker, averaging 18 kg
(38 lb) at the start of a trip. I am hoping to purchase gear that is lighter
still. My trips are usually between three to five days duration.
Bibbulmun Track - Sea level to 585 metres elevation (0 to 1,920 ft). Within
this region I backpack along old forestry roads, sandy tracks, and purpose
built walking tracks.
Temperatures will range during the testing period, from a minimum -3 C to 33
C (26 F to 91 F) during June to November of 2005,
Prickly Bark campsite on the Coastal Plain Trail roughly 200 m (656 ft)
elevation. The trail from the eastern terminus to the campsite is a sandy
track that is mostly flat with a steep climb up a sand dune over the last
half a kilometre (0.31 mi) to the campsite.
Temperatures can range from -5 C to 35 C (23 F to 95 F) during June to
I will be going on overnighters and extended trips ranging from three to
five days backpacking, sometimes walking solo and/or with one or two
It is now winter and well into the wet season where rain can be expected at
least one day/night during a bushwalking trip.
Some nights and mornings are shrouded in fog, especially at campsites
located at the bottom of gullies and hills.
Invariably, the vegetation is dripping wet from either rain or dew early in
the morning when hiking on the track.
The headlamp would be used around the campsite and in the three sided huts
and in my tent should I miss out on a spot in the hut.
I currently own a Petzl Duo E60 that has a standard 6 V Halogen globe and
five 5 mm (0.2 in) LED lights arranged in a tight circle and weighs 290 g
(10.23 oz) with batteries.
In addition to using my headlamp around campsites, I also use it around my
home when looking for items in my shed, checking out our vehicles during the
night when I hear unusual noises around them to make sure no one is up to
mischief, under the floorboards and in the ceiling to check on any potential
termite activity and the odd water leak in the roof.
Occasionally I use it to read in bed.
With a wealth of experience with my headlamp I will be testing the Petzl
Tikka XP for the following, should I be accepted:
* What is the range of tilt that can be achieved and can I read
comfortably when sitting on my self-inflating mattress inside my sleeping
* To adjust the angles of the light, is it extremely stiff to operate
and clicky in sound when moving it.
* How comfortable is the ergonomic elastic headband.
* Will the headlamp slip down on my head and come to rest on the top
of my nose and blocking my vision, as there is no central strap running from
the rear to the front and sits on top on ones head.
* Is the headband very easy to adjust to fit my head.
* With all of the weight in the front, will the headlamp be
comfortable to wear, unlike my headlamp with a battery pack at the rear.
* Is there any padding on the base of the headlamp that is in contact
with ones forehead, and if not, is it a negative or a plus.
* How long do the batteries really last as opposed to the
manufacturers claim as stated on the web site
* Are the battery contacts prone to rust/corrosion and are they
stainless steel or copper.
* Is the battery life indicator really necessary, or is it gimmicky,
because with my headlamp I can tell just by the LED light output when the
batteries are on their way out.
* How easy is it to open the battery compartment, replace the
batteries, and seal the battery compartment?
* Are the four levels of light adjustment easy to operate whilst on my
head, or do I have to take it off to adjust the light to either maximum,
optimum, economy or flood beam.
* Are the switch, connections and battery compartment simple and
* In its three focused light beam modes and flood, are there shadows
and/or dark rings around the central beam.
* Is the reflector smooth or textured? If it is textured, how
effective is the headlamp in giving a more even light distribution and the
impression of a clean unbroken beam.
* When attending to a nature call during the night when other hikers
are asleep in the hut, will the light beam be too bright and wide and
disturb the sleeping people.
* Is there a setting that can be achieved that will not disturb the
sleeping hikers whilst moving around the hut getting ready for bed. I tend
to be one of the last into bed.
* What is the best setting for outside camp activities, eg. Cooking,
collecting fire wood, going to the toilet, finding my way to and from the
* How waterproof is the headlamp? In areas of high humidity, fog and
rain, does moisture enter the battery compartment and/or reflector unit.
* Does the headlamp have a spare globe, or a storage space for a spare
* This is very important. Will there be an abundance of light to play
Yahtzee with a group of three or four people for many hours each night and
in turn, keep the scorer honest. If the answer is yes, what is the the best
Thank you for the opportunity to apply for this test and the encouragement I
have received from long term testers.
Vargo 'Jet-ti" Titanium stove
Initial Report completed 21/6/05
Field Report due 23/8/05
Metzeler Thermo Mat
Sea to Summit Kitchen Sink
Snowgum Storm Shelter Tent
Sea to Summit Thermolite Reactor Sleeping Bag Liner
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