Everyday Carry

Machine Era Co. Wallet Review

Authored by:
Bernard Capulong
Machine Era Co. Wallet Review

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Last September, Machine Era Co. invited early adopters on Kickstarter to rethink their everyday carry with the introduction of their fully machined, aluminum slim wallet. The campaign was met with tremendous support, raising nearly $250,000 from over 5600 backers. In this review, I attempt to rethink my everyday carry as well and share my thoughts on this wildly successful wallet, courtesy of Machine Era Co.

The Machine Era Wallet takes an industrial approach to a modern, minimal wallet through its design and choice of materials. Its understated design, essentially an assembly of a metal plate and a thick elastic band, immediately appears somehow striking yet barebones. The Machine Era Wallet forgoes conventional design cues in favor of rugged functionality, constructed from a high grade 6061 aluminum. The flat black anodized finish not only adds to its aesthetic, but also offers improved corrosion resistance and a comfortable, grippy texture to the surface. I found that with normal use the finish comes off, especially in areas of high wear such as the corners and the top edge that grazes against the pocket the most. It also tends to show scratches and smudges easily, but it appears more like a nice patina than a poor anodization job. The machining overall is excellent, with enough curves and chamfer to the plate that its lines look nice and clean but still handle comfortably.

The aluminum plate has two notches on its sides machined out to fit a thick elastic band, which holds 2-6 cards and tri-folded cash snug to the wallet’s interior. Cash or cards can also be held onto the back of the plate as well, for even easier access. A minimal wallet like this lacks any other organization, so storing cards is a matter of stacking them behind each other. When retrieving cards, I’ve found the most convenient method is to slide cards up and fan them out that way rather than digging through them from the top. Some might find this inconvenient when retrieving the last card in the wallet, but organizing the cards by most frequently used towards the front should minimize hassle. I must be one of the few people still using cash these days, as many modern slim wallets on the market don’t really address what to do with loose bills. This wallet accommodates tri-folded cash, which works decently for the odd note here and there. But folding cash in thirds really adds up thickness quick, and storing them on the outside of the wallet or on top of your cards makes the wad easier to push or slide out. I noticed this happening a lot when I’d try to stuff the wallet into my front pocket with a bunch of singles folded up. It’s a problem that I don’t think would happen to most users, but it happened in my experience. I also appreciated that I could use my bus pass without removing it from the wallet since the elastic band leaves most of the card exposed. Others might consider this a privacy or security risk, however. Overall, storing and retrieving cards is quick and painless. With cash, the wallet operates best with just a few bills.

With the average user’s amount of cash and cards, the wallet slides into the pocket really nicely. It’s slim, sturdy, and lightweight at just 1.3 oz due to its aluminum body, which also happens to handle moisture well. A potential drawback is comfort — while I found it slim enough to be comfortable, others might not appreciate a rigid metal block rubbing against their thigh. Similarly, I wouldn’t recommend back pocket carrying a wallet like this (or sitting on anything in your pockets in general) for comfort reasons.

Reviewer Score: 4.0 out of 5


  • Well-machined, minimal durability
  • Easy to operate and comfortable to use
  • Carries well, slim and lightweight


  • Limited performance for cash carriers
  • Finish wears and shows imperfections easily

Machine Era Co.’s years of tweaking this design ultimately resulted in this solid, simple, but very efficient wallet. It might not look like much, but that’s part of its appeal — it capably handles your cards and cash in ways you think it couldn’t upon first glance. In that regard, I did rethink my everyday carry, and quickly saw its success on Kickstarter was no fluke. Admittedly, it doesn’t handle cash as effectively as I’d like. But for true minimalists who don’t deal much with loose bills, I’d confidently recommend the Machine Era Wallet in a heartbeat.

BUY ($28)

Bernard Capulong

Founder and Editor-in-Chief

About the Author
Bernard Capulong is an everyday carry (EDC) gear expert, entrepreneur, all-around nerd, and the founder and editor-in-chief of EverydayCarry.com—the largest online community for EDC gear enthusiasts. Since founding Everyday Carry in 2009, he’s built over a decade of experience in the industry, reviewing and highlighting brands and products, including pocket knives, flashlights, wallets, watches, bags, pens, and much more.

Bernard is known for bringing everyday carry out of obscurity and into the mainstream, having been published or featured in various publications such as GQ, TIME Magazine, The New York Times, VICE, HYPEBEAST, Outside, and many others. He has also played a part in curating, designing, and developing digital and physical products, resulting in successful crowdfunding projects or limited edition collaboration products with established softgoods brands. He stays on the pulse of the EDC industry by attending trade shows, participating in online interest communities, and actively engaging with fellow gear enthusiasts on social media.

In addition to being the editor-in-chief and main social media personality for EverydayCarry.com, Bernard is an avid gearhead and collector in general. His personal collections span technical bags, fountain pens, digital cameras, retro gaming hardware, personal hi-fi audio gear, and mechanical wristwatches, to name a few. Bernard Capulong is a prominent figure and trusted authority in the everyday carry industry with a career dedicated to helping people discover this hobby and stay prepared with quality gear.

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