The effects of cold stress can be just as damaging to your body as heat stress. Cold stress occurs when your body can no longer maintain its normal temperature.
To maintain your vital organs, the body reroutes blood away from your extremities in an effort to keep your core temperature up. This blood flow change can cause serious complications or even death.
Be sure to keep watch for early symptoms of hypothermia, such as shivering, fatigue, lack of coordination, and confusion.
Do your best to combat these complications by wearing the proper attire. We have a number of solutions for thermal layers, heated gear, proper boots, and traction devices.
Layers and Warming Apparel
Wearing the proper types of layers is an important step for maintaining your body temperature in the cold. The right gear can block those frigid wind gusts while keeping you dry in sleet and snow.
Start with a base layer that can pull moisture away from your body. We have options like long and short sleeves, all-climate materials, and thermals to cover your legs and torso.
Next, a good mid-layer selection will hang comfortably and should be easy to clean. It’s preferable that this layer isn’t bulky. You have work to do and your clothes shouldn’t get in the way.
Now we’re on to the outer layer. As your first line of defense against the cold, you should look for tough and water-resistant materials that offer reinforcement in areas like the knee that are prone to tears.
For your outer layer, we offer thermal bibs, jackets, balaclavas, gloves, and more. You lose heat from any exposed part of your skin. So, if you’re working in cold, freezing, or below freezing temperatures, be sure to cover it all up.
If you want to turn it up a notch, we also have heated gear.
If you are looking for more heat or trying to stay warm with a little less bulk, our heated gear options are your next step.
Battery-operated heated gear has been around for some time. If you tried heated apparel in the past, you may have been less than impressed by the early generations. The battery power was limited, the technology was somewhat expensive, and the durability was often lacking.
Despite those early setbacks, a few companies have pushed on and advanced the technology.
Every winter, we offer a selection of heated gear from trusted companies like Milwaukee. We offer a number of Milwaukee heated jackets, heated vests, heated gloves, and heated hand warmers. These are all battery-operated and developed for outdoor work.
Milwaukee designs their heated gear to use the same type of rechargeable battery that powers an entire line of their battery-operated tools. That way you can charge and swap batteries without hassle.
The max operating times vary between devices and settings but most of these items can run continuously for 6-8 hours before you need to recharge the battery.
Boots and Traction Devices
If you’ve read this far, you’re probably working in some pretty extreme weather conditions. We salute you. When you’re exposed to freezing conditions, chances are you’re dealing with slippery surfaces, falling objects, climbing hazards, and a whole bunch of other awfulness.
Hopefully, you realize how important proper footwear can be under these conditions. If your feet aren’t properly covered, no amount of thermals or heated gear will keep you comfortable. So, let’s talk about boots.
If you like the coverage your work boots offer but could use a little extra traction, you might want to look through our traction devices to help keep you on your feet. We offer models from Ergodyne, YakTrax, ICEtrekkers, Tingley and more.
Stay covered, stay dry, stay warm, and Climb Higher!
Warming Gear Podcast Episode
**The content of this blog is not intended to replace proper, in-depth training. Manufacturer’s instructions must also be followed and reviewed before any equipment is used.
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It seems like just yesterday we were focusing on heat and how to work in it. But, with winter in full swing, it’s time to talk about the cold. This week our Gear Experts® are going to discuss cold stress and how you can combat it while on the job site.
Cold stress isn’t something that people typically talk about. While heat stress is mentioned often and everyone at least knows a little bit about it cold stress doesn’t get nearly as much coverage. But its effects can be just as damaging to your body. So, what is cold stress? Cold stress occurs when your body can no longer maintain its normal temperature. When your skin temperature drops low enough it can begin to lower your internal body temperature.
To maintain your vital organs, the body reroutes blood away from your external extremities in an effort to keep your core temperature up. This blood flow change can cause serious complications or even death. When gauging whether or not cold stress is a threat keep these 3 things in mind:
→ Dampness & Windchill
→ Pre-existing health conditions and poor physical conditioning
→ Improper attire
Cold Stress Injuries & Illness
Cold stress, like heat stress, can cause serious illness. Common injuries and illnesses of cold stress include:
→ Hypothermia: A dangerously low body temperature that can result in gangrene or death.
→ Frostbite: The freezing of body tissue (usually skin) that results when the body redirects blood flow away from the outer extremities.
→ Trench Foot: A foot condition caused by overexposure to cold water or mud. Causes the surface tissue of the foot to die and turn black.
While the threat of cold stress is serious, the solution to prevent it is simple: dress properly. Dressing for cold weather is the most important and effective precaution you can take to reduce the chances of cold stress. Here are some of our favorite options when it comes to protecting yourself from the cold:
Ergodyne 6466 N-Ferno Thermal Jacket
The Ergodyne 6466 N-Ferno Thermal Jacket is your first line of defense against winter weather. Let’s break down what makes this jacket so effective. On the outside, it features a 500D Nylon body with 1600D Nylon reinforced zones in the upper arm and shoulder section to protect from wear and tear. It also features a waterproof coating to prevent liquid from making contact with your skin (remember that dampness can lead to cold stress). The inside is made of 3M Thinsulate insulation which provides top-notch warmth with a quilted layer for comfort.
This jacket isn’t short of storage either. Whether you are carrying hand warmers or something like a two way radio this jacket can handle it. It features two exterior pockets on the front and back and it has an interior device pocket. The YK zippers and spandex cuffs on the arms help seal out the cold and keep you nice and warm.
Milwaukee M12 Heated Jacket
The Milwaukee M12 Heated Jacket comes in a variety of colors and styles. It is also available in a “kit” version that includes a battery and charger. This jacket combines toughness and technology to redefine layering on the job site. The key feature of this jacket is the carbon fiber heating element that creates and distributes heat across the chest and back. The jacket is powered by an M12 Red Lithium Battery that provides 8 hours of runtime. It also features a one-touch LED controller that allows you to choose from 3 heat settings per zone. The three zones are chest, back, and front hand pocket (the chest and back zone can be adjusted independently from the front hand pocket zone).
Now, let’s talk about toughness. This jacket is made out of 900D ripstop polyester with nine riveted reinforced pockets (including battery pocket). It features integrated knit cuffs, an exterior storm flap, and a drop tail extended back for maximum comfort and coverage. And, most importantly, it’s washer and dryer safe so you can get it dirty and throw it in the laundry without having to worry about a thing.
Cold stress is no joke, but it’s pretty simple to prevent. If you need help finding the perfect winter solution for you and/or your crew or you just have questions about cold stress – click here to contact one of our Gear Experts®.
→ Click here to see the Ergodyne 6466 N-Ferno Thermal Jacket
→ Click here to see the Milwaukee M12 Heated Jacket
→ Click here to see our full selection of winter gear
→ Click here to see our full selection of Ergodyne gear
→ Click here to see our full selection of Milwaukee gear
Cold Stress 101: The Video
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Time to accessorize…
Get a shiny new power tool over the holidays? Whether it was a Black Friday door buster, or wrapped up with a bow on Christmas morning, you’re going to need some accessories to make the most out of that tool. Lucky for you, we got ‘em. (Lots of ‘em!)
Milwaukee’s Shockwave Bits utilize a specially designed shock zone to increase durability and reduce stress on the tool. They’re made to be used on their powerful impact drivers and will last longer than your bargain basement bit sets.
Get a Sawzall? Grab yourself some blades! The Torch Ice Hardened Sawzall Blade provides the longest life and maximum durability due to the ice hardening process. And the Grid Iron honeycomb pattern to increase rigidity, which resists blade buckling. Rip through wood, nails, metal… you name it.
This is just a small selection of all of the Milwaukee Tool Accessories available. Give us a call or chat us online if you don’t see what you need!
Milwaukee M18 Jobsite Radio/Charger
Milwaukee is bringing the jams in 2014 with their new Milwaukee M18 Jobsite Radio/Charger. This isn’t your normal radio. It’s an industry first with Bluetooth connectivity, so you can keep your phone in your pocket while streaming music to the radio. Also, it doubles as a charger for M18 batteries for all your tools, and USB for all your devices. Combine that with durability and dependability that Milwaukee is known for, and you’ve got a must have item for every jobsite.
Ergodyne New Retractable Tool Lanyards
Ergodyne announced an expansion of their Squids Tool Lanyard Line to include a new set of retractable tool lanyards. They combine the safety and security of a tool lanyard with the convenience of self-setting length options. There are a few different options in the new line of retractable tool lanyards… choose from carabiner or loop ends, or add on other accessory packs.
Kenwood ProTalk LT PKT-23
New from Kenwood in 2014, the ProTalk LT PKT-23 is a powerful business radio in a compact form. This tiny radio only weighs 3.9 oz but still cranks 1.5 watts of power to communicate over a very large area. Radios are a great way to increase productivity, and Kenwood has made it even easier to keep your whole crew connected over an entire jobsite with this versatile, strong and small radio. (You already know how two-way radios can save you time and money, right?)
Rock Exotica Enforcer Load Cell
The Rock Exotica Enforcer Load Cell is a compact aluminum load cell that measures force up to 20 kN. It’s compact and portable so it can be used “in-line” in rigging systems to measure the load force. Plus, with Bluetooth connectivity you can monitor wirelessly on your iPhone. It features a “slow” mode for monitoring or “fast” for break-testing. The swivel attachment points diminish potentially dangerous torsional and off-axis forces, and reviewing tests is simple with downloadable graphs on your computer.
Klein Glow in the Dark Tools
Never lose your tools again with new Glow in the Dark grips from Klein. Specially coated grips on select tools will glow for up to 30 minutes in the dark. They charge in natural or artificial lighting and offer the same durability and dexterity that is expected from Klein. Glow in the dark grips are available in Side-Cutting Pliers, Diagonal-Cutting Pliers and Wire Stripper/Cutters.
DBI Sala Nano-Lok Edge
You live on the Edge and the Nano-Lok Edge will keep you safe. Designed for foot-level tie-off, and built to the strict ANSI specification for sharp edge application, the Nano-Lok Edge from DBI Sala will allow you to work on the edge without fear. They’re available as a single, or twin-leg model, and with a variety of different hook options.
Petzl has a few different products set to roll out in 2014. GME Supply actually got a sneak peak of some of it a few weeks ago, you can see a quick video of us using a lot of it here. Among our favorites was the new ASAP. The ASAP is a mobile fall arrest device that looks just as great as it works. It can also be paired with the new ASAP’Sorber or Absorbica energy absorbing lanyard. They’ve got a lot more than just that coming out in 2014, so keep an ear to the ground for those.
P.S. We also heard from Miller that there will be a fresh AirCore harness coming out. Also, PMI has some awesome Unicore Rope for 2014 which can be found on their website. We don’t have all the details on those yet, but watch for more info about them right here.
Humans may be considered the most advanced machine on the planet. We can complete tasks that nothing else can, alive or otherwise. But that doesn’t mean that we can’t benefit from a bit of assistance here and there.
The oldest tools ever recovered date back thousands of years. They’re old… 8000 BC old. Granted… those were nothing more than sharpened antlers or broken flint that were used to cut things. Later larger axes were created and eventually those items began to become specialized for individual tasks.
As technology advanced, and craftsmen started to make more and more intricate things, like ornamental chests or entire architectural structures, the tools advanced as well. We got chisels, planes, vices, pliers and saws.
Today, there are too many different tools to even try and cover in a short blog post. But you probably know the general functions of most of what we sell at GME Supply.
To break things up a little, we’ll put them in two categories, hand tools and power tools.
In hand tools, we like our sets from Klein Tools. They have anything from a simple set of screw drivers, to sets that would fill an entire tool chest, for your tool fanatic. If you need more specialized items, we have some awesome sets for folks like electricians.
If you like your tools to put in some elbow grease for you, the Milwaukee Tool gear is where it’s at. We recommend either their 12-volt or 18-volt lines. You can buy their tools individually, or as kits to save some dough. If you need it all, check out their 9-tool combo kit. You may have seen us brag about their heated jackets, also.
And don’t forget all the accessories. Pick up a few blades for that Sawzall. Or maybe a set of Shockwave Bits for your 18-volt FUEL Impact Driver, which are specially designed with a shock zone to increase durability.
Guys, winter is coming. And frigid wind gusts mixed with bone-chilling sleet and snow are not ideal conditions to be working in. If you have to be out in the elements during the winter, we have products that will make it more bearable.
Milwaukee Tools makes these killer heated hoodies and jackets that will keep you toasty no matter how brutal the weather gets. They’re powered by Milwaukee’s M12 REDLITHIUM system. These batteries are the same ones that you may already have in your tool box.
They’ll keep the heat pumping through the jackets’ state-of-the-art carbon fiber heating elements for 6 hours straight. The jackets have two heating zones so you can control the front pockets independently of the core. The hoodies are available in grey, red and khaki or ANSI compliant high-vis lime. You can get the jackets in Red, Black, or RealTree Camo and ANSI high-vis.
HIGH-VISIBILITY BOMBER JACKETS
If you need an ANSI 107 Class 3 High-Vis jacket that’ll protect you from the weather, take a look at what PIP has to offer. The Premium Class 3 Bomber Jacket has a zip out fleece liner so you can wear it as a lighter jacket, or keep it bundled for extra warmth. The high-vis yellow shell is waterproof and has two-inch silver reflective tape.
The folks at PIP also have a rip stop version that features a black bottom to help keep the jacket looking clean, even if your work takes you to some filthy places. Have a job that requires fall protection? Not a problem. It has an opening to allow a rear D ring to pop through the back of the jacket.
No matter how cold or wet it is, GME Supply has gear that’ll keep you comfortable and safe. See all of our warming section online for even more great products to keep you warm and toasty this winter. While you’re there, leave a quick review of a product and you’ll be entered to win over $200 worth of free gear. Climb higher and stay warmer with GME Supply!
Milwaukee makes some of the best tools out there. They have been doing their thing for over 85 years, improving and innovating on tools that you need to stay productive and efficient. Right now, if you trade in your old tools to GME Supply, we’re offering $100 off any new Milwaukee M18™ product. Go here for more info on the trade in program.
M18™ is the fastest growing 18V system around. These things do what you used to need an extension cord and a corded tool to do. If you haven’t heard about it, here’s the short version. They’re professional grade, lightweight, ergonomic tools with 18V lithium batteries that keep going long after others have died. You don’t make money while you’re waiting for your batteries to charge!
The M18 Fuel™ System has killer brushless motors and REDLINK PLUS™ that makes sure your tool is working as hard as it can and as efficiently as possible. While we’re on the subject, let’s look at the differences between brushed and brushless motors.
Now, motors are all about magnets. As we all know, opposites attract and likes repel. When put together and correctly controlled, magnets inside a motor create rotational motion and spin the axle. Motors are everywhere, including power tools like drills.
There are two basic types of motors that are used in drills: brushed and brushless. Both do essentially the same thing. They pump electricity through an electromagnet which is positioned near permanent magnets. This creates spin. The polarity of the magnet has to be flipped every 180 degrees, though. If the polarity weren’t changed, the motor would turn 180 degrees and stop. The way this polarity flip is created is the difference between brushed and brushless motors.
In a brushed motor, the electromagnet passes through a pair of brushes which flip the polarity and makes the motor spin. While this is a very simple and cost efficient way to make a motor, it does have drawbacks. The brushes can spark and create electrical noise, and they also limit the maximum speed of the motor. The motor also runs hotter due to the friction from the brushes. The biggest drawback, though, is the fact that the brushes wear out. If the motor isn’t serviced, eventually it will start losing power and then fail. That's an expensive repair.
A brushless motor basically turns a traditional motor inside out, eliminating the need for brushes. It puts the electromagnets on the outside and the permanent magnet as the rotating piece on the inside. The polarity swap is handled by a small computer which rapidly turns the electromagnets on and off to spin the rotor. While this motor is more expensive to manufacture, it is more efficient and has a longer life. These very precise motors have virtually no wear parts and operate much cooler.
Each motor has it's place, but the latest and greatest is definitely the brushless motors that are featured in the M18 Fuel™ system.
Remember to check out our trade in program to get $100 off your Milwaukee purchase and to learn more about what tools are right for you to get the job done safely and effeciently, contact our customer service department at (800) 940-6762 or email firstname.lastname@example.org