Festival Festival season is upon us, and we all know that means that our props are about to get a workout. Through the rain, mud, playa dust, and everywhere in between, your props will be seeing a lot of inclement climates, so here are some tricks to keep them alive and kicking.
This goes for your gear just as much as your love life! Kevlar can handle more than its fair share of abuse, but exposure to frequent rains can trap moisture inside your wicks, decreasing their lifespan and even leading to mold! Grab some gallon ziplock bags and bundle those babies up! *Do not bag wicks that still have fuel remaining on them – Allow the fuel to evaporate beforehand
An Ounce of Prevention
Wick covers are a delight – They simulate the weight of a fueled wick, protect your kevlar on drops, and help protect your wicks from the weather, but they can also trap moisture against your wicks if they become sodden. Before putting wick covers on your staves or poi, wrap your wicks in saran wrap for an added layer of form-fitting water resistance!
Hit up Home Depot, Lowes, or most any other home improvement store and you can find tubes in all varying diameters and lengths. Grab some rigid, lightweight tubing and a pair of endcaps for a watertight travel solution that protects your props from both the weather and the trials of the road. Grab a long tube for your staff and/or doubles, or cut off a short 6″ tall piece of tube and cap both ends for a small poi-containing capsule. For added convenience, drill two holes in a staff tube and knot a loop of rope through it as a handle!
Always pack a small toolkit with the essentials to maintain your gear. Some must-haves for any Prop Medic Kit include:
– Kevlar Thread and Curved Needle – I got mine from Dark-Monk.com and have used it to save quite a few pairs of poi. Keep your stitches close together and as much below the surface of the wick as possible
– Extra Chain and Hardware – Whether it’s ball chain and cradles, twist link and split rings, or technora and a splicing fid, have extra leash material on hand in the event of a failure
– Multiple Tapes – Especially essential for my fellow staff-swingers. A couple extra rolls of grip tape, a roll of silicone tape, and a roll of electrician’s tape can be a lifesaver!
– Quicklinks – They get lost. A lot!
Remember your sunscreen, at least a gallon of water per day, and don’t forget to get a good night’s sleep at some point! Enjoy the festival season!