Need a Hand Drying Those Gloves?

While being caught out in the rain skiing, [Andrew] was left with a pair of soaking wet gloves. Leaving them to air dry did little good, as after 3 days they were still wet, and blowing a fan at them did little to nothing to help the situation. Luckily [Andrew] had been thinking about ways to make a forced air glove drier for some time now using standard plumbing fittings.

A prototype was made similar to consumer models where the glove is fit over the end of a pipe, and while this worked great to dry the palms, it did not help the wet finger situation at all. In order to solve this issue a new design was whipped up featuring 4 fixed fingers and a movable thumb made out of copper pipe. A little drilling, and soldering was performed then the metal hand was then duct taped to the end of a hair drier, turning soaked gloves into perfectly dry ones in about three hours.


  1. TBO says:

    Just be careful… you can quite easily overheat and possibly damage hair dryers by doing this (speaking from experience here…)

    • Phil says:

      ..And depending on the material of the gloves, you may even overheat the gloves themselves..

    • wmatl says:

      As one who has killed hair dryers by using them to do other drying task I agree. Hair dryers are not made with much of a duty cycle in mind. I wonder if just air blown though the copper hand without heat would dry them as fast. The copper hand is definitely an improvement of just blowing air at the one open end. I could see having two of these hands mounted on a box that holds a blower. The trick would be to get a blower that could get up enough pressure to force the air up the tube and out of the gloves.

  2. JamieWho says:

    Yeah, that’s some expensive glove drying to run your hair dryer for 3 hours.

    It seems like slower forced air from a simple (low power) fan running overnight would also work. Although this solution would probably use less duck tape(r) than the current method. :)

  3. Luis says:

    What about a clothes dryer or the fireplace? I’ve never had this problem, but then I again I dont ski. If your gonna get all hack-a-day on it, use a heat gun! :)

  4. jcroll says:

    a great idea-

    if i were to try this, i think it would be easier on the hair drier motor to widen the inlet, and add a branch Y for the other glove to do both gloves simultaneously. i would also drill machine gun holes throughout the fingers and palm

    did it really take 3 hours to do one? i don’t think hand held hair driers would endure that prolonged running time well, and consider the electric bill (and noise).

    i think this would work well with also drying gloves in a conventional drier

  5. copertop says:

    Interesting execution. I worry about the point heat at the tips, I did a quick google to see what was out there. Most interesting find was the attached link, look at the way they flow the air through it?

  6. nikescar says:

    The only thing I have against this hack is that I don’t understand the problem in the first place. Over many years of sledding then snowboarding then snowmobiling I have had a lot of soaking wet gloves. I have dried them successfully overnight a bunch of different ways. I’ve set them near a wood burning stove, onto of electric baseboard heaters, on top of old-timey radiators, and thrown them in the dryer. I even had a friend that put his oven on low heat with the door cracked. All these worked well.

    • Mad Myche says:

      Picture you are a firefighter, and you take your gloves off at a structure fire in near zero temps. The gloves freeze in minutes, and your hand ain’t going back in.

      I carry 3 sets with me, a spare for myself and an extra pair for someone who did not have a spare set.

      When my sets freeze up, they end up an exhaust pipe for a few minutes and then back into the ca of my engine

  7. dmcbeing says:

    Best way to dry small pieces of fabric imo is a microwave oven, 5min tops and you have 100% dry fabric.Just let it cool down since it will be extremely hot.

  8. MisterPG says:

    Occam’s razor.
    Buy a decent 2nd pair of gloves. Costco. 30 bucks.

  9. mdce says:

    I’ve been doing this with my socks for years…

    Ahh the life of a rushed part time TV Broadcast automation engineer and final year electronics undergrad!

  10. vonskippy says:

    We ski alot (here in Western Colorado), and with three kids, that’s 5 pair of gloves to dry. Besides everyone having two pairs of gloves (or more), we just put them in a pillow case, tie it shut, and pop it in the dryer. The pillow case keeps all the zippers/buckles/clips from scratching the dryer drum. On low temp, it usually takes just one trip (two if the gloves are soaking wet inside and out).

  11. Hirudinea says:

    This may be off topic but is it just me or does that picutre look like some kind of DIY sex toy?

  12. Michael says:

    I helped clean the mess for some friends that burned down* their apartment using a hair dryer to dry their boots, so be careful!

    (*the building was all concrete so the damage was limited to the inside of their own apartment, not the whole building)

  13. Alex says:

    If you have leather gloves, be careful! Excessive heat will cause them to shrink and crack.

  14. Jim K. says:

    At the museum where I work we acquired several Russian space artifacts a few years back including some space suits. When we opened the crates we found in among the items a sort of hand shaped item with perforations on the “fingers” and “palm”. The whole thing was connected with rubber tubing. After a bit of digging we found that it was an official Soviet era spacesuit glove drying apparatus. (Hands get sweaty when you’re sealed up in a “rubber bag”.) This build immediately reminded me of that. Unfortunately can’t seem to find my photos of it at the moment.

  15. mdce says:

    casually wondering why my comment is taking sooooo long to moderate…

  16. Don’t dry too quick…placing them on top of the hot water cylinder will do nicely.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 96,409 other followers