Version 3.4 endurance test

This page describes an endurance test performed with version 3.4 of the Trekker’s Friend.

Some time ago I realised that, though I have walked thousands of km with Trekker’s Friends over the years, through that time I was changing the wheels and other components so wasn’t sure how a single Trekker’s Friend would perform over a large number of km. If you look at the photos on this website you will see many different wheels, for example, as I kept trying new types to find the best ones.

I am therefore now walking most days with a Trekker’s Friend, loaded with approx 22kg of weight on it, recording the distance walked each day and the total distance I have walked with it, to understand how it fares over long distances. This is the same Trekker’s Friend, with very minor changes, that I used for the Queensland Railtrails Walk (305km, done in May 2021), and the walk to Geehi Dam and Grey Mare Range (75km, done in February 2022). It is also the one that was used for the independent review of the Trekker’s Friend which was done in December 2021.

As at 16th August 2023, when this endurance test finished, I had walked 1861km with this Trekker’s Friend, with 18-25kg of weight on it. During that time I performed the following maintenance:

  • I replaced the daypack after the the Queensland Railtrails Walk (in May 2021), because this walk showed me that I needed to slightly improve the design of the daypack to make version 3.2 of the Trekker’s Friend
  • I greased the first set of wheel bearings at 400km and replaced them at 520km. The second set did approximately 1345km
  • One of the welds broke at approximately 1230km, and I rewelded it.

This test showed that an area that could be improved in the Trekker’s Friend is the welding. Up to version 3.4, MIG welding was used to put the axle together. From 3.5 onwards, TIG welding was used for this instead.