Don’t Play Games with Your Money, Get the Clinch Wallet

April 16, 2010 | By More

It’s not very often that I get to help my wife with her website. She’s very self-sufficient, and way smarter about the things she works on than I am. That being said, I was really excited when she asked if I could do a review for her. Turns out this one was a guy thing. I know guys — in a world where all the special things seem to be for women, this one was special for us guys.

What she had in mind was a new wallet. Her reasons are two fold. One, she wants a genuine review. Two, she wants me to replace my old wallet.

Much like a certain short bald Seinfeld character, I carry a wallet that is, shall we say, stuffed to the brim. Sadly, it’s not because it’s overflowing with cash. If I take my wallet out of my back pocket when I’m driving I lean to one side in the seat.

I’m prepared for nearly any instance. It’s mainly the usual cards that seem to be needed for everyday life. Driver’s license, ATM Card, credit card, home improvement store credit card, insurance card, and a few others. On top of that, every store seems to have a “rewards club” these days. These reward cards typically give you something for free after you buy so many games, salads, video rentals, mochas, etc.. I just happen to be a sucker for free stuff.

On top of all that stuff, I also carry a tiny metal ruler and two spare keys. I work an hour from home, and you have not seen an angry spouse until you have asked them to drive two hours out of their day to let you in your vehicle. The little ruler just seemed like a good idea. (I’m actually surprised airport security has never picked up on that one.)

This is the point I was at when my lovely wife handed me the Clinch Wallet to check out. This new wallet is the newest item from the folks that created the Grab-It Pack. I would actually use the Grab-It Pack as a wallet if it were sociably acceptable, but it just doesn’t go with khakis and a tie.

Truth be told, I’ve wanted to try a wallet like this for awhile. I just didn’t think I was cool enough to pull it off.

The Clinch Wallet is a longer wallet — the type favored by skaters, surfers and truckers. It comes with a chain and a button on a loop to secure it to your belt loop. A very secure Velcro closure secures it closed.

On the outside the wallet looks pretty standard. Inside though, it’s got it where it counts. There are clear sleeves for credit cards and three large deep pockets. The middle section turns like a book page, and has three sewn pockets on the backside. Without doubling any of them, there’s room for 19 cards!

The design is pretty clever. The pockets are all sewn in the wallet. The problem I’ve had with most wallets is they expect you to carry your cards in one of those little cheap plastic photo carriers. Not the Clinch Wallet. Sixteen of the pockets are sewn with fabric on the inside and a clear layer on the outside. That means you get the advantage of the clear window with durability of a sewn pocket.

The materials and design are such that the cards don’t just fall out of these pockets, either. They are locked in place with a little tension that really gives each card a secure feeling. They are also overlapped in a way that they don’t add much overall thickness to the wallet. It’s a really, really clever design.

At this point, I was obliged to empty out my own wallet. This worked out well as I found several things that were expired, and a few companies that were no longer in business. I loaded up the Clinch Wallet with my plethora of stuff and went to the store. Along the way, I had a strange feeling that I’d forgotten my wallet. Why? Because I couldn’t feel it. The thickness was so reduced — I really did feel like I wasn’t carrying a wallet. Also, because of the way it’s made, there’s some flexibility in it that you don’t get in a standard wallet.

I carried the Clinch Wallet for the next couple of weeks, and I really liked it. There were a couple things I learned, though. The three sewn pockets are where I should have put my frequently used cards. They were easier to get stuff in and out of. I also learned, the three large pockets for folding money worked out well for sorting. I kept my “mad money” in one. My day-to-day cash in the middle one, and receipts in the third.  This works out great for organization.

Now, I work in an a plant environment, so during the week, I’d take the chain off. I know it’s not nearly as cool, but when you work around machinery you get afraid of getting caught or pulled into stuff. I also don’t typically wear cargo pants at work. With jeans,the Clinch Wallet seemed to hang out a slight bit more than I would have liked. That worked out well though, because people would ask about it and I’d get to show off my nifty piece of high-tech money storage.

Over the next couple weeks, I really grew to like the new wallet. There was only one small thing that bugged me about it. The two spare keys I carry didn’t have a real good home. I put them in the pocket where I was keeping my mad money. They tended to bang about in there, and while I never lost them, I was worried about it.

I have to say if this style of wallet appeals to you, I’m not sure you could do any better than this. Every thing is easily accessible, secure and well-organized. You’ll never have one of those embarrassing moments where you pull out one card and 5 others fall to the ground when 10 people are in line behind you at the check out. (Yes, that has happened to me with my old wallet.)

I’d love to see a second version of this wallet that was maybe one card length shorter. It’d appeal to my khaki wearing gadget loving brethren for sure. And if it had a small secure inside pocket for two spare keys, it would be perfect.

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  1. Errex says:

    Interesting item. Not a fan of the larger-style wallets, but when you carry more than a couple of cards, I can see the advantage of this configuration.

    Great review!