Because of the limitations on storage, most a folding camp chair is some variation on the folding chair. However, folding chairs provide a number of problems on their own. On the one hand, they are inherently less sturdy than traditional chairs, which can create problems with durability and even with safety. On the other hand, they can be difficult to put in position; in fact, the sturdier they are, the more difficult they can be to take apart or even to put back together.
Folding Camp Chair: Sturdiness and Safety ?
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Sturdiness of Folding Camp Chair
The primary concern with a folding camp chair is its overall sturdiness. Many people (and perhaps most people) have had the uncomfortable and embarrassing experience of having had a folding chair fold up on them while they are actually sitting right in the chair. This can actually be quite hazardous because, aside from the danger of the fall, the chair may easily collapse on top of the person sitting in it.
To circumvent this, you should look at how the pieces of the chair clasp together when the chair is assembled. In general, there are two different ways that this is done. The first is using a “hook”. In a hook system, one piece of metal is designed in such a way so as to go around another piece of metal as a kind of “hook”. These systems can be fairly sturdy if designed correctly, however, if designed incorrectly, they can slip right off.
The other kind of system is the snap system. In these systems, one piece of metal has a little tab with a spring behind it that snaps into place when the chair is opened. These kinds of folding chairs are more secure than the hook systems provided they are snapped properly. It is very easy to make a mistake in judging whether or not the snap has been correctly put in place, so look carefully.
Ease of Opening and Closing
What people complain more about than anything in a folding camp chair is the difficulty in opening and closing the connections that are holding the chair together when it is opened? Hook systems can be difficult, because you need to pry the chair apart at just the right angle or else the metal pieces will not come apart properly. When combined with springs, you may need to do this using some force.
Snap systems have the added difficulty that it can be hard to push the tab back into the opening, so as to take the chair apart. The difficulty is that such an activity requires three hands, one to hold each piece of the chair, and one to hold the tab. Without assistance, this can be quite difficult.
In addition, all of this must be done outdoors, where it may be cold and wet. Even testing for ease of opening and closing in a hardware store won’t replicate the actual conditions under which you will actually be performing the tasks.
In order to test for the ease of opening and closing, then, either ensure that the chair is very easy to open and close right in the store (so that you can safely assume it will be just as easy in the wild), or try to open and close it using just your thumb, middle and index fingers. While it is not exactly the same, it can simulate the effects of not having perfect control and give you a sense of how well something works under less than ideal conditions. Read more about folding chairs at Folding Camping Chairs: Multipurpose Chairs
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