Last weekend we went to Appalachian Outfitters just for fun to get prepped for our trip that’s coming up in a couple of weeks. One of the things we acquired is some of the Orikaso foldable tableware from Flatco Ltd. (I love that name!)
I’ve seen these around a number of times over the past couple of years and I’ve always been skeptical about how well they hold up to use — both the hinges and the overal durability with cutting on it and such.
I read a number of reviews online, both of the old snap-style and the newer “fold a tab into a slot” type. Overall everyone had only said positive things about it. In fact the folks over at Orikaso say you can even use it as a cutting board.
In any case, the store had them on a 35%-off sale, so I picked them up on a whim.
Of course I already have some camping tableware, so why would I get something new? Space. Like backpacking, motorcycle travel has a lot of the same limitations (with a twist). When backpacking the primary concern in weight above all else. If you need to carry everything, every gram counts — you feel it the entire way. On a motorcycle the biggest issue I run into is size. The panniers only hold so much. And when you have two people and gear for both space gets used up quickly.
The gear we had before was a set of polycarbonate plates and cups. Both take up quite a bit of space though with the flanges of the plate and the cups are a far worse with the handles and the overall odd shape. The Orikaso solves that by making everything flat. It’s also quite light tipping the scales at 330g (11.7 oz) with the envelope and 276g (9.7 oz) without the plastic sleeve. The whole assembly looks a bit puffy sitting there, but that’s just the folds somewhat pushing on the envelope a bit — it squishes down to almost nothing with any force applied at all.
After getting it home the first thing I did was follow the directions and pre-fold all of the creases. Things start off stiff but after a few folds things loosened up a bit. The first time it took a little time to get things together. Breaking it down goes a bit faster.
The next concern was how hard it is to put together when in the field. Having put it together a couple of times before I started to get a knack for getting it set up. I timed myself folding it up — 2:58 to get all six pieces done. Not bad at all. Certainly it’s a bit slower than just pulling out the plates and cups, but not bad at all for how much space it saves. Putting it all away only took 2:18 to get it all back in the envelope. I think that’s quicker than trying to stow the plates and cups. All in all I think it’s pretty much even with the old gear.
One other cool thing is the cup has measuring marks. I wanted to check how accurate the markings are. They’re OK. One cup of water almost made it up to the “1 cup” mark on the glass. Not perfect, but good enough in a pinch.
So far I’m happy with them. I’ll report back when I’ve used them in the field.
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