While, it is true that sun tanning is one of the most typical activities of beach lovers, nevertheless, at some point, all of us need a shade to rest and enjoy our favorite beverages. Both an outdoor umbrella and a tent come handy in this scenario.
A beach tent, as compared to an umbrella, is more effective to provide us such a setting, shade, but is less convenient to set up and carry along. I will illustrate the difference and the comparative advantage of a tent in a separate post. Here, I will just stick to the beach umbrella.
The beach umbrella provides an effective shade but on a much small scale than a tent. It is much greater in size than a standard hand-carrying umbrella and has several aspects that must be carefully considered while making a purchasing decision: the fiber, ribs, and pole. I will discuss each and every element in detail in the upcoming analysis.
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Tommy Bahama Beach Umbrella
This beach umbrella is particularly enticing to those buyers who are looking for the cheaper options available in the market. Also, it is suitable for the newbies who want to buy their very first umbrella with a mindset that they would use it for a maximum of two and three seasons before ultimately switching to the trendier umbrellas.
If I say one factor that can be defined as the sole determiner of a purchasing decision, it can be no other than the money you have in your pocket. The more money, the more the quality of the product you will get for it, but not necessarily true for all purchases. The same goes for the beach umbrella. You can’t expect a 50$ umbrella to last for numerous seasons and to be on the high end of quality. However, you can expect a pretty good performance by raising the bar a little.
Tommy Bahama has tried to do their best in a two hundred dollar budget. The umbrella will last more than three seasons, and if you take proper care, it might be five but not more than that. For obvious reasons, you can’t expect it to last for life.
The fabric is the flesh on the ribs and pole of an umbrella, and its quality partially determines the efficacy of the beach umbrella to do its job. Thin fabric will be ineffective against the heat waves of the beach. Furthermore, it will rip apart more easily than it takes for a thicker fabric.
Thickness(H3)—The thickness is measured in Dernier, donated as D. The greater the number before D, the thicker will be the fabric. Normally, the fabric is 300D, 600D, and 900D thick depending upon the use it. For umbrellas, the rule of thumb is to select a material with a number greater than or equal to 300 before D.
Tommy Bahama Beach Umbrella features 300 D polyester fabric that is just on the baseline. It will do perfectly fine under any sun heat.
UV Protection (H3)—There are places around the world where UV radiations are particularly harmful, and overexposure to them can lead to serious health issues. The ordinary beach umbrella blocks but some of the UV radiations. For the umbrella to block 100% UV radiation, it must have a UPF, ultraviolet protection factor, equal to 100%. Several parameters come into play to determine the UPF of a fabric of which its composition, weave quality, thickness, stretch, and allowance of moisture contribute the most.
Fortunately, Tommy Bahama Umbrella meets the top standards. It has a UPF factor of 100% that enables it to provide complete protection from harmful rays.
The ribs of an umbrella, like the ribs in an actual skeleton, are the fundamental supporting structure along with the pole.
The rib can be made up of different materials among which fiberglass, featured in the Tommy Bahama Beach Cart, is far well than others. The strong currents of air, a normal occurrence at beaches, can break or disfigure fragile materials. Fiberglass is tougher than carbon fiber as it has high impact resistance when flexed; therefore, it can flexibly bend without permanently compromising the overall structure. The mixture of all desirable properties such as flexibility, lightweight, and high resistance to corrosion, makes it a preferable material for a beach umbrella. All in all, it contributes to the convenience in usage and durability of the umbrella.
When it comes to the pole of the beach umbrella, two specific criteria shall be met to be passable for a good pole. First, it should be maneuverable; and second, it should have a good anchor geometry at the bottom. The telescoping pole in Tommy Bahama’s umbrella meets both criteria. The aluminum pole has a corkscrew type anchor at the bottom that keeps it firmly in place, whereas, the hinge in the middle of the pole allows you to tilt just the top of the umbrella to meet the sun without having to reset the entire base. As the name suggests, telescoping pole, you can also fit the apparatus at the top to fulfill your passion for astronomy.
Aesthetic appeal of the umbrella is not at the top of many users list and it certainly not counted among the factors that determine the buying decision of an umbrella. Given the good price and quality, users will be tempted to buy anything that they can lay their hands on. However, there is one particular aspect that is almost never ignored—the color of the canopy. I will personally recommend you to find a color that can help you identify the umbrella from a fairly long distance. The color red of Tommy Bahama’s umbrella will do a perfect job in this respect. Provided that not many of the umbrellas at the beach are of the same color, you will not have to bend over backward to find yours at the beach.
Ease of usage:
Ease of usage, or also put as a convenience, is determined by a number of factors such as the weight, the ease of setting up the umbrella, and the foldability of the umbrella. Tommy Bahama sun umbrella is light-weight thanks to its aluminum pole and fiberglass ribs. Although some users reported a glitch in the locking mechanism, the umbrella is easy to set up and the corkscrew anchor secures it deep in the loose sand. Moreover, the umbrella can be easily collapsed to be fit into the storage bag that comes with it. The storage bag has a shoulder strap to conveniently carry it around. Furthermore, due to its foldability, it can be easily adjusted with other items placed in the beach cart.
In light of all the standards discussed above, this Costco sun umbrella can be easily passed as an item that can be comfortably handled.
Last update on 2021-07-13 at 16:42 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API