Helinox Chair vs Walkstool Comfort

   07.24.14

Helinox Chair vs Walkstool Comfort

For those of us who like to sit comfortably when we go camping or traveling, having a light weight and compact chair is very handy. Here I’m reviewing two such stools that are a higher grade of camping chair above your standard tailgate $20 deal at your local outdoor store. The two chairs are the Helinox and the Walkstool. I happen to have two Helinox and one Walkstool. Not that I like the Helinox more than the Walkstool, I just have the second Helinox because of some additional features the other one does not.

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Helinox Chair One

The first up is the Helinox Chair One. The Helinox retails between $99-$129 depending where you buy it and what color it comes in.

Here are the specs:

Specifications:

  • Assembled: 20.4″ wide X 19.68″ deep X 25.6″ high
  • Packed: 13.77″ long X 4″ wide X 4.72″ high
  • Weight: 1.84lbs (1.97lbs with tote bag – webbing ladder for attaching to pack/bike/kayak etc)
  • Capacity: 320 lbs

The tote bag has daisy chain loops on the outside as well as looped handles so you can strap it to a pack or anything else you can think of. I keep one on the inside of my FJ Cruiser.

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The Helinox chair is rather small for a chair, and that’s because it’s made using tent-pole-like sticks. These are made by DAC in Korea. The chair seat is a skin of fabric that is stretched onto the poles.

Here is a video showing how it is assembled.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ifc2ZLzYQFg

It’s a remarkably comfy chair and great to lounge in. The tote bag can be looped onto the poles and be used as storage for small items under the chair.

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Now the downside. Because it sits so low, you can’t really use this to eat at a normal height table. You feel like a child sitting at the adult table. The other down side is having to take the chair down to relocate. It takes a couple minutes to take the chair down and pack it back into the little tote. I feel like I am taking down a tent because of the tent pole like legs. With the way the Chair One is designed, you kinda need the tote bag to keep it all organized. While the tote doesn’t weight that much, it does add to the weight.

I have two Helinox Chairs in Multicam. The full Multicam chair is made of cordura, and it has pockets on either side and a large loop velcro panel for morale patches. The tote is also made of cordura and has a single row of molle. The other Multicam chair does not have the pockets or the Velcro. It is made of a lighter weight material and has a mesh back similar to the regular Chair One design.

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Walkstool Comfort

Now the Swedish Walkstool Comfort. They retail for about the same price as the Helinox Chair. If you look around you can find them a little bit cheaper. I bought the Walkstool Comfort 55cm, which is made in Sweden. Walkstool has a Chinese made line called the Walkstool Basic. Similar in design but it is not as robust as the Swedish made version.

Specifications:

  • Legs Extended: 22″ high x 15″
  • Legs Collapsed: 13″ high x 15″
  • Folded: 16″ long X 4″ wide X 4″ high
  • Weight: 1.76lbs
  • Capacity: 495 lbs

The tote bag is just a mesh back with a draw string closure and two braided nylon ropes to act as back pack straps.

Just like your run of the mill tripod chair, it simply opens. There is a Velcro strap that keeps it all together. However what sets it aside from the standard tripod chair, is the telescoping legs and the robust aluminum used. You can twist the assembly to lock the legs from telescoping out when it is collapsed.

The weight capacity of the Walkstool is 495 lbs! That far overshadows the 320 lbs weight limit of the Helinox. You can even use the Walkstool in its collapsed mode for a lower sitting position, and you can maneuver around on the collapsed seat.

The velcro strap can even be used to hold the stool on your belt.

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The 55cm Comfort sits rather tall. Almost like a bar stool. It is remarkably comfortable. However with no back to the stool, you have nothing to lean against. Perfect for sitting at a normal height table.

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As I said earlier, the Walkstool can sit lower with the legs collapsed.

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The Walkstool is great as it is easy to deploy and pack away. You don’t even need to telescope the legs out if you don’t want to. Downsides? It is not made for lounging in for extended periods, but it beats sitting on the ground or a rock.

Here is a somewhat cheesy infomercial of the Walkstool at IWA earlier this year.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EzfjbELiLDc

Something the Helinox guys haven’t done is support a Volvo with their chairs. Walkstool did.

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Conclusion

Either chair has its pros and cons. They are similarly priced and do not take up too much room when packed away. If you want a chair that is easy to deploy and adjustable for seat height, then the walkstool is a great choice. However, if you want a chair to lounge around a campfire for a couple hours on end, then the Helinox would better fit that criteria.

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