Professional Electrician’s Dan Tovey tries on the latest site-proof workwear from Snickers’ Winter/Spring 2016 range. Here, he shares his thoughts on the Craftmen’s Kneepads, Power Core gloves and Solid Gear shoes.
I’ve never really thought of kneepads as having any sort of advanced technical function aside from stopping stray screws and debris from destroying your kneecaps when you kneel down. However, the technical bods at Snickers have clearly invested a lot of research and effort to ensure their pads are exactly tailored to the needs of the professional tradesperson.
While one type of pad for all situations may seem like enough, I got to try three variations of the brand’s latest range.
First up was the 9110 Craftsmen’s Kneepad (pictured above). These spongey and lightweight pads are barely noticeable when you are walking around but still soften the impact on your knees on a hard surface. The grooves on the inside face of the pad make them super ﬂexible and ensure they ﬁt around the knee when it bends. These are great if you want a subtle kneepad but I’m not sure you could get away with kneeling on a screw or pebble without the rest of the site hearing about it.
The D30 kneepads come in two versions, the Lite and the XTR. Made from Polyoleﬁn, the pads also feature D30 an active and specially engineered material made to ﬂow with you as you move, but on shock they lock together to absorb impact energy.
The Lite is like a heavier version of the 9110. They feature the same groves as the previous pair so are very ﬂexible (considering their thickness) and deﬁnitely look like they could last you a while.
The XTRs are the heavy duty pads in the range. These are thicker, so are noticeably less ﬂexible than the other pads, but they more than make up for that with the protection they offer. Like armour for your knees.
The other pads do the job if you are working on your knees once or twice a day on clean domestic jobs. However, if you are up and down all day on site with debris all over the ﬂoor, then you are going to want the big guys. Your kneecaps will thank you.
Power Core Glove Range
My ﬁrst impression of the Power Core glove range is quite promising. Tell-tale signs of poor quality gloves are dodgy stitching and limited padding. However these look very well manufactured.
The gloves have a sort of mesh material on the back of the hand which keeps the glove ventilated but with a durable rubber patch on the knuckles to protect against scrapes and knocks. The palm side is very well padded with the polyurethane material oﬀering grip as well as a good degree of ﬁngertip control.
For extra control when carrying out delicate jobs, the range features a ﬁngerless version. Your thumb, index and middle ﬁngers are free while your other two ﬁngers remain protected.
Solid Gear Vapor Safety Shoe
I’m a bit sceptical of safety shoes as I’ve always thought boots offer better all-round protection and when it comes to footwear on site, safety always should come ahead of looks. However, this model seems to integrate safety and durability with a relaxed trainer appearance without much of an obvious compromise.
The vibram outsole and Cordura Ripstop material make the shoe feel rugged enough, and they do feel lighter and less restrictive than boots. These would be great for days when you are darting back and forth to domestic jobs.
One thing I haven’t come across before is the BOA Closure System which allows you to fasten the shoe using a crank below the tongue. This is quicker than tying laces and would be easy to work even if you are wearing gloves or if your hands are plastered in god-knows-what.