User Review: Alite Mayfly Chair
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $69 + Shipping
Weighing in at 1.4lbs, the Alite Mayfly 4 Leg Stable Folding Camp chair is a well-made and strong chair that collapses into an 11.5" long, 4.3" bag/package.
- All metal frame
- Small pack size
- Lightweight (for a chair)
- Slightly confusing assembly
- Low to the ground
Unlike competing products, the Alite Mayfly chair's frame is all metal construction. The only plastic bits were on the bottom of the rear/central feet. This chair can be set up without the front legs so that it functions in the same way as Alite's Monarch chair as a rocker. Adding the front legs lends stability and keeps you from 'falling to the front' if you need to lean forward (say, when cooking).
The chair is rated to 250lbs and it seems to live up to that rating. I wouldn't trust BSA's Ultra-light camp chair or REI's Flex-Light chair in the same fashion thanks to their plastic joints. Unlike BSA and REI's offerings (or Alite's Mantis for that matter), the Mayfly is much closer to the ground. The lack of the extra set of legs lowers it's overall height. You do gain the option to leave the front legs home and use the Mayfly as a rocker though.
Saying the chair is collapsible is an understatement. Unlike usual camp chairs that hinge in on themselves, the frame of the Mayfly has more in common with tent poles. Each piece is joined to the next with shock cord helping to reduce confusion as you put it together for the first time. This is a good thing since the directions are sparse.
Overall I'm very impressed with the chair. Initial test show that it is comfortable without creaking or strain that the others show when tested with a ~200 lbs weight. You don't need to feel this chair will break if you sneeze while sitting in it!
If you are an ultra-light backpacker, you will be leaving this home. If you are looking for a little bit of comfort and don't mind a little bit of weight, this is one of the best options out there! Far better than most of the folding camp chairs I've used (though nowhere near as comfortable as a good zero-gravity lounger!).