Gear: waterproof sleeves

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Have you ever had “waterproof” gear soak all the way through? Or drenched everything in a surprisingly deep water crossing? Or had your top case leak and hold a half gallon of standing water? waterproof sleeves will save your phone (and other electronics) from certain death in situations like these.

I kept our iPad and iPhones in these sleeves during our ten-day Goldwing Tour, packing and unpacking them a few times per day and even now, they don’t show any significant wear. While we didn’t get the opportunity to field test them (read: get miserably wet with soaked luggage), they kept my phone perfectly dry while it was fully submerged in a bowl for half an hour. They’re the same general idea as a zip-lock freezer bag, but purpose built for keeping electronics safe and dry. The seams are much larger and stronger, the material itself is anti-static, chemical resistant, and the phone sleeves have a clear side that’s touch screen compatible. $5 for phones, $8 for ereaders, and $10 for iPads.

  • Archer

    Ziplock freezer bags cost 1/10th the price of these. They would need to be several times better to be worth it.

    They are also anti static, chemical resistant and clear, and work with capacitive touch or pressure touch screens.

    Do they have cord pass throughs or other technology to justify the difference?

    • Gene

      Plus I know my Xoom will fit in my ziploc bag, whereas doesn’t even bother to post the size of their bags. Epic fail, like restaurant/store sites that don’t post their hours.

      • Grant Ray

        Yeah, not listing sizes is really poor oversight, but I’m betting easily fixed. I used the phone case this Monday while riding all day in surprisingly torrential downpours. I had to pull over and check directions a few times, and it’s really nice to have a fit case that doesn’t bulk or making holding clumsy while I’ve still got my gloves on.

        During Labrador, we used similar bags that weren’t cut to size, so we had to fold the bags around the phones. Needless to say, wearing gloves in rain, I think I dropped my phone in the mud at least twice while trying to look at route info I’d jotted down in Notes.

      • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]

        Having seen the bags, which I consider just-above-disposable in quality, I’d rather go up a tier or two and invest in something that will last.

        KwikTek Dry Pak bags/cases feel much sturdier than the bags, but they are also twice the price.

        SealLine bags/cases also seem more durable, and these are what I purchased for myself. But again — twice as expensive as the WhenItPours. The first time I tried a SealLine bag was on a boat charter. I figured if SealLine is good enough to be standard rental equipment — with all the abuse associated with rentals — it’s gotta be worth its price.

        • Grant Ray

          Those SealLines are actually 4x the cost of the WhenItPours phone case. That said, there’s obviously a lot more in terms of technological design and functionality, they look pretty awesome.

          I think the difference is obvious between a 1-man startup out of San Diego vs. a fully capitalized company.

          • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]

            Whoops, sorry for the pricing mistake!

        • Ben

          Throw aLOKSAK in the mix. I’ve used them without fail, and they’re relatively cheap too. Not a fan of all the print on them, but am a fan of all the available sizes.

          • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]

            These look super-affordable, and I like their many sizing and wearing/mounting options. Thanks for the link.

            On a related note, I have a water-resistant (not waterproof) phone case that has a velcro backing. It came with a strap for my jacket arm and also a pad that bolts onto a standard RAM plate. Therefore, I can wear the phone on my arm or I can velcro it to one of the RAM mount arms on my motorcycle. The phone case has two “layers” inside — one for the phone and one for an extended battery that I connect via micro-USB to the phone. The case also has a cable pass-through, so I can charge the phone (or extended battery) using the USB charging ports I added to my handlebars.

            I have a Garmin GPS that I use as my primary navigation device on my motorcycles, but it’s also nice to be able to attach my phone to myself or to my motorcycle as a secondary navigator.

        • Ax

          +1 on SealLine. Have been using one for several years as a map case (self-printed maps/directions — “old school GPS”) and it’s extremely durable and totally waterproof.

    • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]

      1/10th the price? Closer to 1/50th the cost. A whole box of zipper-lock freezer bags is about $5.

  • Robert M

    I ordered some tonight. Wet phones and wet fingers are no good and rain is an almost daily part of life here right now.
    With almost $2k of gear on, what is the point of saving a few dollars to live life using freezer bags; wet is bad enough.

    • Johndo

      +1 on that. Zip locks can do the job when you have nothing else around but it’s certainly not as safe. I think these sleeves are quite cheap considering the value of what you put in them.

  • mcfaite

    I’ve used a DiCAPac WP560 to cover my GPS in the top of my tank bag – it has a zip lock closure and a roll closure with velcro – I can run the wire through the roll, and I’ve never had water get in. Although I’ve never submerged it entirely, I have ridden in the rain with it for days at a time.