By: Nelson Warley and Ben Knepler
Have you ever found yourself sitting in an old camping chair for hours each week and thought “there’s got to be a better way”? That’s what led us to create the Emmett outdoor portable chair. What’s the difference to a regular camp chair? We designed the Emmett from the ground up to be the ultimate portable chair, so while both are products that fold that you can sit on, there are big differences!
- Seating Position and Ergonomics
Regular camping chairs have bucket seats that you sink down into, scrunching up your spine and shoulders. Many people also find that the front lip of the seat pinches the back of the legs behind the knees. That’s all fine if there are no other options, but it's not a naturally comfortable seating position.
The Emmett was designed to have optimal ergonomic angles, some tension in the seat, and a curved front. The result is that it sits like a real chair, comfortable for hours.
- Folding Design and Rigid Arms
Regular camp chairs have fabric arms that you can’t put weight on. The Emmett uses a new, patented folding design to create a real chair with rigid arms while still folding compactly. That makes it more comfortable when you’re sitting and also easier to get yourself in and out of the chair!
- Frame Materials and Sturdiness
Regular camp chairs are made using thin powder-coated steel frames and plastic (usually nylon) connectors, which is cost effective and provides strength given the size. The Emmett uses aerospace-grade aluminium for the frame (with additional steel-plated reinforcements to the armrests), and fiberglass/glass-filled nylon connectors. Aluminium is 3x lighter than steel, which enables the Emmett to use a more substantial and significantly more sturdy frame without adding much weight. The Emmett overall is 10.9lb vs. 7-9lb for a typical traditional camping chair.
- Fabric Quality
Regular camp chairs use a rugged canvas material that is very cost effective but rough to the touch and not breathable. The Emmett uses a custom outdoor fabric that we call TrueFlex that is both soft and breathable, as well as quick-drying and weather, stain and UV resistant. It’s not cheap, but makes a big difference to the chair.
- Carrying Bag
Regular camp chairs traditionally come in a fabric, drawstring sleeve, sometimes with a thin shoulder strap. The carrying bags for the Emmett are specially designed to make it easy to get the chair in and out and easy to carry with a padded shoulder strap. The included Classic Bag is a big step up from regular camping chairs. And the optional upgrade Premium Bag is the ultimate carrying experience. It is made from recycled plastic bottles, has significant padding on the back, an extra pocket and buckles that enable you to connect two chairs to carry both hands-free like a backpack.
- Cupholder and accessories
In a regular camp chair there is typically a round mesh cupholder built into the right fabric armrest. The cupholder (and other accessories like the phone holder) for the Emmett is an optional extra for those who want it, and connects to the right or left of the chair. It can remain on the chair when the chair folds. The cupholder fits multiple sizes of bottles up to 32oz and even mugs with handles. And with the phone holder, no more trying to fit a square phone into a round hole!
- Bag hooks
The Emmett has hooks on the back of the chair to hang the carrying bag (or other bags) when the chair is open. This is not a feature of regular camp chairs.
The Emmett has bottle-openers under both arms. This is not a feature of regular camp chairs!Creating the best ever outdoor portable chair took us years of development, design and engineering. We’d love to hear your feedback.