Why put storage and clothing together? Well, a lot of our storage is now worn on the jobsite. In addition to the work belts we’ve been wearing for a long time, 2014 has seen the introduction of tool/technology backpacks become very popular. We’ve also got the tool bags that we carry.
For clothing this year, heated jackets are really taking over. They’re more than just the first generation that put heating elements in a basic jacket. We’re starting to see high end outdoor styles and features in them. Even work boots are evolving to better take care of your feet on those long days.
So without further ado, here are the 2014 Pro Tool Innovation Awards Winners for Storage and Clothing!
Winner – Tool Bags
Klein 55431 Tradesman Pro Organizer Lighted Tool Bag
What they say: The latest innovation in tool bags from Klein Tools is the Tradesman Pro™ Organizer Lighted Tool Bag. It features a twist on/twist off removable LED light that can be positioned to illuminate inside the bag or the workspace. The removable light also has a swivel hook and magnet for hands free use. The Lighted Tool Bag has 31 pockets for plenty of tool storage, a bright orange interior to find tools faster, and a molded base to keep the bag protected from the elements.
What we say: Tool bags often fall prey to becoming a place to dump all your hand tools in one place without much organization. They all are mixed up at the bottom and you root around hoping to grab the right one. By designing an orange interior and including a light to see, Klein makes those of us that are a little more disorganized a little less frustrated.
Winner – Tool Bags, Backpack
Milwaukee Jobsite Backpack 48-22-8200
What they say: Every facet of the new Jobsite Backpack was designed specifically with the professional tradesman in mind, providing users with an ideal solution for transporting their tools and tech gear to the jobsite. From a hard molded base that allows the bag to stand up and stay dry in harsh jobsite environments, to the mid-section of the bag that un-zips to reveal a wall of vertical tool storage, each feature of the jobsite backpack was carefully designed and manufactured to survive the jobsite and make the user more productive.
What we say: Milwaukee prides themselves on their “Nothing but Heavy Duty” motto. The fact that they have a backpack that will hold your laptop or tablet and tools isn’t necessarily far reaching compared to others out there. The fact that they used heavyweight ballisticnylon material to make it—yeah, that’s heavy duty… and innovative.
Winner – Work Boots, Waterproof
Wolverine Cabor Series
What they say: Wolverine EPX takes Energy Potential to the extreme, bringing comfort closer to the foot to return energy and fight fatigue all day long. Made from dual layer foam, EPX starts with a dense base that distributes weight evenly across a sturdy foundation. The honeycomb heel pattern expands to absorb impact, and a ribbed spine in the forefoot flexes through each step to maintain cushioning. Finally, a compression molded EVA top layer cushions from heel to toe. Together these components can return energy back to the foot providing the energy to finish the job at hand.
What we say: Wolverine’s EPX technology is designed to provide all day comfort. This translates into feet that aren’t as sore, but also less pounding that affects your knees and hips. The Cabor family keeps your legs from being overly sore while at the same time being stylish enough to wear out with your lady.
Winner – Jackets
Wolverine Cameron Jacket
What they say: With careful attention to detail and premium materials, Wolverine delivers the best cotton duck canvas jacket out there with the Cameron. The Cameron features the highest quality materials including a 100 percent cotton duck canvas exterior (407 gsm; 12 oz.) lined with 3M™ Thinsulate™ Insulation for warmth and 100 percent polyester quilted taffeta for a smooth fit. The jacket’s Wolverine DuraLock™ Defend fabric resists water and oil, and convenient interior pockets with a zipper or Velcro closure keep belongings safe. With an elasticized bi-swing back and fully gusseted arm sockets, the jacket offers a flexible fit and excellent range of motion.
What we say: This is truly a jobsite ready jacket that oil and water simply bead off of. At $100, it’s a no-brainer for those cooler temperatures when you need both warmth and flexibility.
Winner – Jackets, Heated
Milwaukee M12 3-in-1 Camo Heated Jacket 2386
What they say: The first customizable heated jacket system designed for the outdoorsman, the Milwaukee® M12™ Cordless Realtree Xtra® Camo 3-in-1 Heated Jacket sets a new standard in cold-weather performance and versatility. Worn separately as a base layer or attached to the outer shell and zip-off hood, the heated vest integrates (5) carbon fiber heating elements and advanced fabric-layering technology to distribute and maintain heat across core body areas. The rugged wind and water resistant shell features special noise-reducing fabric with the Realtree Xtra® Camo pattern to withstand the harshest outdoor conditions while blending in with the natural colors of the fall, winter and early spring. Made out of the same weather-resistant material, a removable hood helps keep heat in and provides additional protection against the elements when added to the shell.
What we say: This looks like the next big thing in heated jackets. Keeping your core warm is the primary goal, and we love that you can go with just the vest to do that. We also appreciate that the hood is removable. With several outdoor enthusiasts here, we’re also pretty stoked that it’s being introduced in Realtree Camo.
Winner- Jackets, High Visibility
Milwaukee M12 Heated Jacket Hi-Vis
What they say: With an ANSI Class III certification, the M12™ Cordless High Visibility Heated Jacket meets or exceeds all jobsite and roadside construction standards to ensure user safety. Features such as a zip-in removable hood and a hidden inside pocket to facilitate custom embroidery maximize versatility for individual users and construction companies alike.
Like all other M12™ Heated Jackets in the system, the M12™ High Visibility Heated Jacket actively warms the body and stimulates blood circulation with three sewn-in carbon fiber heating zones on the chest and upper back to warm the user’s core in even the coldest jobsite conditions. This durable heating element can be set to high, medium, or low with a simple touch of a button on the lapel.
What we say: We’re grateful that the H-Vis version of the M12 Heated Jacket isn’t just yellow, but certified for all safety standards for visibility on the roadside and jobsite. You still get all the other great features on the Heated Jacket, but in much more of a “hey, there’s someone here” kind of non-verbal communication.