Author Topic: waterproof breathable jacket  (Read 1439 times)

jasonwe

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waterproof breathable jacket
« on: 22:36:51, 29/01/18 »
Hi looking for advice on good waterproof breathable jacket , my 10 year old one is more or less had it , zips etc going . I was in usa before christmas and decided to treat myself to an arcteryx BETA SL HYBRID JACKET , from reviews etc it sounded great . Did a couple of hikes in it and was shocked at how poor it was , it was like wearing a plastic bag , not breathable at all,  there was a collection of water in the inside pocket after a hike yesterday so I am sending it back , I am lucky I got it in a REI shop and they have an unreal returns service if you are not happy . I am not into the Parmo jackets heavy and warm, has anyone tried the alpkit jackets was onto their staff today on their live chat , he wasn't too sure about how breathable they are  :o . Or if anyone who has a standout jacket thats very breathable and would recommend it would be great thanks.

sussamb

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #1 on: 06:23:03, 30/01/18 »
Loads of threads on this forum, try starting with this one http://www.walkingforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=35874.msg512407;topicseen#msg512407
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NeilC

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #2 on: 08:25:31, 30/01/18 »
Yeah read that thread, where an argumentative geek bangs on about how Goretex really works! ;D


Paclite is Goretex's least breathable fabric so that's not going to help. But then none of them will deal with a sweaty kind of dude working hard, especially in damp conditions.
IMO ventilation options like pit zips, and dressing so you're only just about warm, are just as important as the fabric.


Even Paramo gets damp if you push it. You have to bear in mind you can get soaked in sweat wearing just cotton t-shirt on a dry day if you work hard enough or conditions are humid.


Next time I'm buying a membrane-based shell garment, I'm going to give Neoshell or eVent a try. From learning how they work, I'm inclined to think they're likely to be a more breathabler than Goretex (which itself appears to be somewhat better than generic PU membranes). However the very fact that there is endless debate about which ones work the best is a strong indicator the differences are so small that it's bloody hard to be sure.

zero

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #3 on: 18:00:25, 02/02/18 »
Alpkit certainly should know about the breathability of their jackets. Good reviews of Alpkit Balance so may be worth a shot. I nearly got one when looking recently but got a Marmot Exum Ridge (Gore Active). As for what jacket, it all depends what you're after. eVent and Neoshell have a slight air permeability so that does help with breathability over Gore. In winter this can translate to feeling cooler with eVent compared to Gore (all personal experience). Neoshell is less noisy than Gore (and generally heavier due to its nature). Paclite has poor breathability relatively. A 3 layer fabric will be more breathable than a 2.5 layer fabric but it is all fairly relative. 


In terms of breathability, we often expect miracles from our jackets but we shouldn't as it's not always possible to be breathable. Factors like layers, speed, wearing the jacket when we don't need to, humidity, incessant rain mean the jackets can't always cope. I guess you need to think what you want most - breathability, durability, price, lightweight. It's a balance between those factors and probably only you can tell what to get. I got a Montane Further Faster (Neoshell) and was excellent but the cut just didn't work for me. So as with most things (especially footwear), try on jackets if possible.

fernman

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #4 on: 19:25:41, 02/02/18 »
Threads like this leave me puzzled as to what is wong with me, or dare I say what is so special about me, because I haven't had any problems with condensation in my waterproof jackets since the days of boil-in-the bag pu-coated nylon cagoules. Perhaps I don't sweat as much as other people?

I had a Karrimor jacket for a quite a few years, made by the old firm before it was taken over and the quality went t*ts up. It was made of an early membrane material, around the time of the birth of Gore-Tex, I don't remember what it was called. I was always dry and comfortable in it until it wore out.

My next jacket was a relatively inexpensive coated breathable one by Mountain Pass, no I've not heard of them either, before or since, yet I could wear that in all-day rain and only have a little dampness where it had penetrated around the neck. Certainly no condensation.

When the above one failed in its sixth year I replaced it with a Craghoppers Kiwi Gore-Tex jacket. Not a brand I would normally go for, but I liked the olive colour, the size and fit were good on me, and I could just about stretch to the almost three-figure price. Again, no hint of condensation in four years' use. I don't know too much about these things but it has a mesh lining, I don't know if that makes any difference.

EDIT: Just rembered the name of the breathable material used for the Karrimor coat, it was Sympatex.
« Last Edit: 10:00:49, 03/02/18 by fernman »

Dyffryn Ardudwy

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #5 on: 21:38:34, 02/02/18 »
I am a Montane fan, none of their gear has disappointed me over the years, and their reliance on Pertex, makes their gear less reliant on delicate inner membranes, such as GoreTex.
Few materials are as windproof and breathable as Pertex, and combined with a high quality waterproof coating, makes for a great bit of kit.
Another added bonus, is that their gear, is lightweight compared to most of the competition, and just as robust as a GoreTex, and most of them are sensibly priced.

Mel

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #6 on: 22:37:40, 02/02/18 »
jasonwe - looking for a waterproof AND breathable jacket is like looking for rocking horse poo. 




.... or hen's teeth...



No expense spared in pursuit of a bargain ;)
https://snailspacewalks.blogspot.co.uk/

Dyffryn Ardudwy

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #7 on: 13:05:44, 03/02/18 »
I totally agree with that, but the internet is a magnificent tool allowing the potential purchaser of a waterproof and breathable jacket, to do their own extensive research.
I am sure most of us, are aware of those respected manufacturers, who produce high quality waterproofs.

Spending possibly a lot of money on a quality waterproof jacket, is not something you should do at the spur of the moment.

Write down on a piece of paper, just exactly what you want from your waterproof, number of pockets, design and flexibility of the hood, and do you want a removable hood, or a fixed one.

We can all advise on on our personal favourite jackets, but its only you who can make the decision.

I like Montane equipment, due to their beautiful quality, and reliance on Pertex, and relatively good value, but there are so may different jackets, claiming unique virtues over a competitor, that its almost impossible to make the right decision.

Spend a significant time doing a internet search, and then visit a good store, so you can try your chosen jackets on for fit and comfort.

Once you have whittled your choice down to say, two or three potential purchases, search high and low, until you get that jacket at the cheapest price possible.


My last jacket, cost me 60, and it retailed for close to 150, so significant reductions are possible, and do not feel guilty not supporting the big shops, such as Cotwold's etc, as their mark up, can be considerable.

Good luck with your search, it will reap rewards if you are patient with your time and effort to search the web.
« Last Edit: 13:11:37, 03/02/18 by Dyffryn Ardudwy »

NeilC

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #8 on: 23:03:39, 05/02/18 »
The Arcteryx is likely sweaty because it's Goretex's PacLite fabric which is their least breathable offering I believe.
The Alpkit ones look like they use white-label PU membrane stuff like all the other own-brand materials out there, which doesn't usually equate to the ultimate in breathability.


By all accounts the most breathable fabrics are NeoShell and Event and possibly Goretex Pro - all of which do away with the PU layer.


As for which jackets are the most breathable - if they have the same fabric then it's down to ventilation features like pit zips.

gunwharfman

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #9 on: 12:36:06, 06/02/18 »
This thread has just reminded me that after thinking I am finished with camping and clothing purchases for a while, in reality I'm not. I want to find a replacement for my Marmot Precip but again want a single skin jacket. Might even consider another Precip? I'll start looking again tomorrow.

MichaelUK

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #10 on: 15:42:48, 06/02/18 »
I have 2 Spraway Gortex jackets. One is a light weight with mesh liner, the other is a heavier Gortex XCR coat/jacket. I posted a little while back about believing my lighter jacket was leaking! Ive now come to the conclusion that the jacket is fine, and it is me that leaks! I walk hard and sweat hard. My walks are usually 15 - 20 mile, over moorland, uneven tracks and peat bogs. I push my self hard, especially on the hills. Last friday I did a 18 mile walk taking in 5 trig pillars over open access land, so mostly deep heather. I had a thin short sleeved base layer and a windproof soft shell jacket on. Hard work, lots of accent and decent. I was soaking with sweat to the point when I stopped for a cuppa there was sweat running down my backpack! Im reasonably fit, not over weight, but have always sweated. I know there may be a risk of hyperthermia with cooling down rapidly. Anyway my point is I now concede regardless of how well a jacket breathes Ill always be wet on the inside.
« Last Edit: 15:47:48, 06/02/18 by MichaelUK »

sussamb

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #11 on: 15:50:25, 06/02/18 »
The main difference is that at least 'sweat wet' on the inside should be warm. 'Precipitation wet' that you'll get if your jacket leaks can be very cold, so best kept out  O0
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MichaelUK

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #12 on: 15:52:32, 06/02/18 »
True. I find the wind to be a killer during the winter when I stop for a cuppa. Always cold when I start walking again, but soon warm up. The other option is to slow down and take things easy!!!!
« Last Edit: 15:56:07, 06/02/18 by MichaelUK »

NeilC

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #13 on: 17:15:32, 06/02/18 »
Yes you have to get your under-layers right. I still do the classic thing of being cold at the start and then 10 mins later up the slope having to stop to remove fleeces etc.
I recently bought a runners top as a base-layer - thin, wicking, very limited insulation value and has mesh under the arms. Under a Paramo, which is about a thin fleece's worth of insulation I think, it's ideal. I don't get sweaty. Whereas the merino ones I've been wearing are too effective when pushing hard, so I'm saving them for the tent.




wobblyknees

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Re: waterproof breathable jacket
« Reply #14 on: 19:51:08, 06/02/18 »
I want to find a replacement for my Marmot Precip but again want a single skin jacket. Might even consider another Precip?
Do you mind me asking what is wrong with your Marmot Precip? I've just bought one. Is there something I should know about them?


My favourite jacket is the Paramo Alta. Very breathable but definitely not waterproof. My Precip sits mostly in my backpack as a waterproof backup for when the rain overpowers the Alta. It doesn't happen too often but when it does, I am very glad to have the Precip.