Now and then, I like to play with some new products. Sometimes, a product that I play with has some problems, and it's always nice to hear back from the manufacturer when the problems have been fixed.
Awhile back, I received a 5x7 PanelPak. The PanelPak is a neat concept for carrying wet panels. Basically, if you took two wooden picture frames, fastened them front-to-front, and then carved away as much wood as humanly possible but not so much that the unit wouldn't function, that's the PanelPak. It is very lightweight and compact but sturdy. (Each joint is secured with glue and a wood spline.) I can just shove it in my backpack with all my other gear and not worry.
The one I was shipped had two natural rubber bands to hold the panels in place. They rotted within a year.
The manufacturer heard my complaint, and recently shipped me a 9x12 PanelPak with a new version of the bands. Here's what the manufacturer says:
"As a result of your post and feedback from others, I began investigating alternatives to the natural rubber bands we where shipping at that time. After 6 months of testing we began shipping PanelPaks with synthetic rubber bands in July. These bands are TOUGH! I have yet to have one break or decay like the old ones did."
The new bands do seem tough! I tried out my new PanelPak this week, and I'm very happy with it. It'll travel with me to Arizona this winter.