When you spend time outside, you’ll inevitably have to deal with a few mishaps, like breaking a tent pole which can leave you with an unusable shelter, or getting snagged by a tree branch that can tear your jacket.
However, with the proper knowledge and preparedness, many of these minor outdoor problems can be solved on the spot, saving you money in the long run by avoiding unnecessary gear replacements at professional stores. After all, obstacles are the true cost of greatness, so if you want to experience extraordinary outdoor adventures be prepared that you’ll probably have to fix a thing or two along the way.
For that reason, as a precaution, before heading outdoors for a long weekend hike, or hunt, it’s always a good idea to plan and bring along a few items in a reasonably sized emergency kit, which doesn’t have to be expensive.
Therefore, prepare yourself for your upcoming adventure, sit down and create a checklist of all the items and gear you plan to bring, and then think about what could go wrong with them. Although these failures will most often occur due to normal wear and tear, it’s always good to be ready, so here are some things you need to know to repair your gear like a pro.
Make Sure You Have The Right Tools With You
Equipment faults usually happen while you’re away from home without a stack of tools, and no matter how well you preserve your gear and check for damage before you depart, you’ll need to do emergency repairs in the vast outdoors most of the time.
Your stack of tools doesn’t have to be huge, but having a thread and needle on hand, as well as tent seam grip tape, patch kits to seal holes, and split-bar buckles, will allow you to repair broken buckles without having to cut and sew straps.
Furthermore, if you’re a bowhunter, you might also need a crossover vise to position and hold the part of your bow that needs to be glued and sit until it dries, which you can find at places such as totalvise.com. Besides that, you might need some shoe glue to reattach peeling soles, duct tape or gaffers tape, and rubbing alcohol that can be used to disinfect scratches and cuts and clear dirt for better repairs.
Understand What You Are Trying To Repair
One of the most frustrating things about repairing outdoor gear is that you have to figure out what’s wrong with it. To do this, you should first scrutinize your gear because a lot of the time, people think that their outdoor gear has broken down when in actuality, it just needs some cleaning.
The first thing you want to do is try and figure out what is exactly wrong with your outdoor gear, which can be as simple as making sure that all the parts are screwed onto the frames of your goggles or backpack correctly.
If you find that something needs replacing, like a strap or buckle, then take the items apart and secure them in a safe place. Nonetheless, the most common gear that gets damaged is usually the wear-and-tear type of gear, such as tents, backpacks, zippers, and sleeping bags, and there are some easy ways to repair them without any hassle.
The most common tent repair is the tent seam repair, but if you have a hole in your tent, then you can use a tent patch kit by following simple instructions that are usually given along with the kit.
Sleeping Bag Repairs
Sleeping bags are an essential part of camping as well as for backpacking trips. However, sometimes sewing kits for sleeping bags are necessary to fix holes or tears in them. You can do this by using a blanket stitch or yarn stitch for your repairs, or you can make your mattress using a foam pad and some type of cloth.
If you have a sticky zipper that won’t budge, try cleaning its teeth with some mild detergent or a small brush; that way, any grit or filth will be loosened. However, if that doesn’t work, try to rub some candle wax along the zipper length. Though if only the pull of the zipper is missing, you can replace it with a paper clip or a safety pin until you can find a proper replacement.
Ultimately, if nothing else works, don’t be shy to ask for help. After all, someone near you might have an extra glue stick or lighter or even lend you an additional backpack if possible, so asking for help might turn out to be a great solution if you’re out of options.
Repairing and maintaining your equipment is never fun, but it is something we all should know how to do; whether you are out in the mountains on a hunting trip or just hanging out in the backyard, chances are, you might need to repair your gear. Hopefully, these tips will help you do that more efficiently and reduce costs for professional repairs.