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Old 22-10-2014, 06:08   #1
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Modern rain gear sucks

What's up with modern rain gear? I've owned a gill jacket, Henry Loyd pants, marmot pants, gill bibs, and now a heli Hansen jacket. All of them to a t become saturated in a heavy rain. You'd think with the amount these things cost they would work effectively. I'm thinking of buying some old school grundens.


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Old 22-10-2014, 06:22   #2
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

I just threw out a higher-end Henry Lloyd jacket that had been worn maybe 4 times in its 4yr life after I wore it a 5th time in the rain and got soaked right through it. Completely - I would have had the same result if I didn't have it on at all. No holes or anything.

I went back to non-marine outdoor gear - bought an Ascent jacket from Bass Pro. Columbia and others sell similar stuff.

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Old 22-10-2014, 06:24   #3
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

I should add to that list, a Guage jacket that is happy to soak me every time I wear it.


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Old 22-10-2014, 06:37   #4
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

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Originally Posted by unbusted67 View Post
I should add to that list, a Guage jacket that is happy to soak me every time I wear it.


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Once the DWR (durable water repellent) coating wears off, the fabric can wet out once it wets out it will no longer breathe and you get wet from the inside... 303 Fabric Guard, Nikwax and other products restore the DWR nature of the garment so the Gore-Tex can continue to breathe. I treat my outdoor foul weaather gear two to three times per year and am always bone dry.

I just came back from the boat, at 6:30 am, after throwing chafe gear on for today's winds, it is pouring, and my jacket was beading like Rain-X'd glass and my cotton t-shirt underneath was bone dry......

I have 15 & 20 year old Gore-Tex shells still performing as new. Unfortunately Gore-Tex garments are not set it and forget it like a Ronco product... They need maintenance and many are unaware of this.... Being an avid winter climber I am in-tune with this because a jacket that can't breathe, can kill you...

Takes me about 40 seconds to hang my jacket and spray it with 303 HTFG...

You could not pay me to go back to my old Grunden's lobster / commercial fishing gear. Talk about getting wet from the inside out..... D'oh....

All that stuff was good at was keeping fish odors off your entire body as opposed to just your hands. I was always drenched inside it because it does not breathe at all....
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Old 22-10-2014, 06:42   #5
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

Were the suits in question advertised as 100% waterproof, or 'rainwear'?

Myself I've had good luck with lower-priced and house-brand outerwear from workwear or sporting-goods stores. One such jacket and some lined rain-pants kept me comfortable over a 7-hour slog in steady rain and 20+ kt winds. Of course, after a couple hours, you're going to be damp anyway from perspiration, depending on how well the suit is vented. Your inner layer (shirts) should be synthetic and wicking, so you stay comfortable even when damp.

[edit - good tips, MS]
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Old 22-10-2014, 06:56   #6
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

I use Grundens. Love them. Had them for 14 years now and still perform perfectly. They also protect you from bottom paint when you're sanding it off, fibreglass when you're grinding it, tar when you're tarring something, paint when you're painting something and pretty much anything else you can think of. If you get them about 2 sizes too big for you then there's plenty of air circulation.

I do also have a fancy modern jacket that i use occasionally if it's really cold. Gill. I like that too, but don't expect it to last anywhere near as long as the Grundens. Mind you, i haven't tried spraying it with anything.
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Old 22-10-2014, 07:03   #7
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

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Once the DWR (durable water repellent) coating wears off, the fabric can wet out once it wets out it will no longer breathe and you get wet from the inside...
That wasn't what was happening in my case - I definitely was not sweating enough to become that soaked. I get wet in it as soon as it starts raining. And later tests where I poured water on the jacket without wearing it, had the water soaking right through.

And if the DWR can't last through 5 wearings, I have no use for it.

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Old 22-10-2014, 07:11   #8
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

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Originally Posted by Maine Sail View Post
... Takes me about 40 seconds to hang my jacket and spray it with 303 HTFG...
303 High Tech Fabric Guard was rated "Best", when compared to seven other competing brands, after being reviewed and tested by Practical Sailor.
Water Repellents for Fabric - Practical Sailor Article
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Old 22-10-2014, 07:25   #9
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

I have owned a number of breathable jackets, Goretex or similar over the years and, even when brand new, if it rained hard I was soaked. I always thought that if moisture could breathe out then water could leak in through the same pores.

Maybe will give it one more try with the waterproofing stuff Maine Sail just recommended. If that works I'll be thrilled but even if it keeps my back dry I'm very skeptical that it will keep my butt dry when sitting at the helm in the rain. For that I think a totally waterproof, non breathing fabric is the only answer but I'm open to suggestions.
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Old 22-10-2014, 07:41   #10
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

Where do you get 303?


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Old 22-10-2014, 07:49   #11
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

In my locale, if it is raining or blowing hard enough to cause spray, then it is not a hot day. Breathability is not required for me as sailing is not aerobic exercise. I have always been comfortable with rubberized gear for outdoor, non aerobic activities. Just got a set of Grundens and am happy wearing them under sail.

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Old 22-10-2014, 07:55   #12
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

Where we sail, Grundens would probably kill you within 5 minutes

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Old 22-10-2014, 08:04   #13
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

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Where do you get 303?
West Marine, Wallmart, Ace Hardware, SailRite, NAPA, Camping World, etc.
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Old 22-10-2014, 08:26   #14
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

Have you guys ever considered either taking the foulies back to where you purchased them, or sending them to Gore? Especially for the kind of coin they cost any more.

I had a hiking jacket where the Gore membrane delaminated (and it was a replacement for the 1st one which failed) and they sent me a check without much of a fuss. Especially given that I explained my many decades of playing & working outdoors, so I knew when an item was crapola.

Albeit, I've always been of the group to call it a Gore TAX. As for me the stuff seems to drive up the prices of outdoor gear, more than doing anything else to it/for me.
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Old 22-10-2014, 08:38   #15
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Re: Modern rain gear sucks

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Where we sail, Grundens would probably kill you within 5 minutes

Mark
Where you sail, I would probably die in 5 minutes no matter what I was wearing

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