Helinox® Chair One Review
Just the Facts:
Here is a quick list of form and features for the Helinox Chair One review:
• Weight – 1.9lb/ 850g
• Packed Size – 14″ x 4″ x 5″/ 35 x 10 x 12 cm
• Assembled Dimensions – 26″ H x 21″ W x 20″ D/ 65 x 52 x 50 cm
• Seat Measurements – 13.5″/ 34cm from ground, 13.5″/ 34cm deep
• Load Capacity – 320lb/ 145kg
Our group of 7 people sat around the campfire every night after each day of hiking and fishing. If you’ve been deep in the woods and know the difference in comfort of sitting in a chair versus on a rock or tree, you entirely understand how the extra two-pound pack weight of a Chair One makes perfect sense. And notice that I said two pounds! Two pounds is manageable. Many of the chairs on the market weigh considerably more and they support a lot less weight than the Chair One by Helinox.
I brought two of the Helinox Chair One camp chairs on this trek. We had 5 different models of chairs in the camp, including two that were cheaper knock-offs of the Helinox Chair One. I mean, the knock-offs were almost identical in measurement and functional design. But that is where the similarity ended. My Chair One models performed superbly, even with my adult sons twisting and turning on them as they reached for food, wood for the fire, and so forth.
The Chair One is rated up to 320 pounds. I weigh 210 and one of the guys in camp went 230. He twisted in his knock-off model chair and shattered the hub. It was completely unusable after that, meaning that one person had to sit on a rock or stand after that first night’s mishap. That same 230-pound man spent a lot of time sitting in my Chair One models and there was never a hint of fatigue or failure in the chair. I watched him one morning preparing breakfast from one of the Chair One chairs; so yeah, they were amply stress tested.
The Chair One sets up fast and is very comfortable. There was never a moment of discomfort and no sign of fatigue or wear after using them heavily around camp for nearly a week. The fabric part of the chair is durable and vented, making it the perfect companion for lounging around in the hours before leaving camp or before bedtime.
Helinox makes a camp table and a lightweight cot as well –all designed for backpacking and they are serious about quality of design and materials. I’ll have more to say about some of their other products in reviews.
In summary, I give the Helinox Chair One the following marks (of a possible 5):
Durability – 5
Comfort – 4.5
Ease of Use – 5
Reliability – 5
Overall – 4.85
What They Could Do Better
Frankly, not much. This little chair is well thought out and designed to perform. I have the feeling it is made for the warmer seasons. The only suggestion I can think of is the material is sort of a meshy matierial in a few places and it might mean being a little cool in extreme conditions. We camped at 10,500 ft., with temps in the high 30s at night, and I did not feel like the chair was drafty. We were fortunate to not to deal with any notable wind or rain.