Gear Pass or Fail

Info on gear, conditioning, and preparation for hiking/climbing.
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nyker
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by nyker » Sat Feb 20, 2021 9:19 am

Adding: I've also used two different alpaca wool zip sweaters and they are warm and softer than traditional wool garments.
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shelly+
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by shelly+ » Sat Feb 20, 2021 10:24 am

It's the type of fiber that makes wool itchy. Lambswool or shetland wool are coarser, thicker fibers and will always be itchy, no matter how you wash it. Merino, alpaca, cashmere, and llama fibers are softer. But it's difficult to find commercially-made garments in alpaca or llama. Cashmere sweaters make a good base layer and are very soft on the skin. It's impossible to find socks in any natural fiber except lambswool and merino (or cotton, obviously), and socks require being knitted with an additional polyester-type thread to give them elasticity. I'm curious, nyker, where you find alpaca sweaters?

I still maintain my argument that natural fibers, when treated properly, are water resistant but not waterproof. Anecdotal evidence and experience, of course. Even cotton can be highly water resistant when care is taken.

PSA: Please don't use Woolite on natural fibers and don't put wool in the washing machine. Hand wash with a pure castile soap to maintain its natural properties. You can also "dry clean" a wool garment by dusting it with baking soda and putting it out in the sun. Just don't put wet wool in the sun, as it will discolor.

Everything you wanted or didn't need to know about wool. :)
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by nyker » Sat Feb 20, 2021 10:42 am

Shelly, seems I need to go shopping with you next time!

I found the alpaca sweaters in a little market in Ecuador years ago. One was very lightweight, one heavier weight.
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by shelly+ » Sat Feb 20, 2021 11:04 am

nyker wrote:
Sat Feb 20, 2021 10:42 am
Shelly, seems I need to go shopping with you next time!

I found the alpaca sweaters in a little market in Ecuador years ago. One was very lightweight, one heavier weight.
Damn... I knew "locally somewhere in South America" would be your answer!! Are they handknit?
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by Conor » Sat Feb 20, 2021 11:17 am

It should be pointed out that wool can mean different things to different people. For example, merino is just a sheep from an area, usually oz or nz. Pashmina can mean taken anywhere from the pashmina goat or the finest is taken only from the chin area. Then, how it is spun into thread can also dictate softness.

Wool has awesome insulating properties, same with fleece. I've sat at the front of a whitewater raft in Canada, taken a splash full on. Only to feel the warmth take over. Same with wool socks and the bogs in greenland. You will get wet, but you stay warm. Great for people who prespire like i do.

I'm not sure this "trick" is as readily available anymore, but I used to buy cashmere sweaters for recreation at thrift stores for a couple bucks each. We always wash in the machine, air dry. I've personally never experienced the degradation of its peoperties as it is often touted to do. One is going on 10 years of decent use since I purchased as the thrift store.
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by shelly+ » Sat Feb 20, 2021 11:28 am

Conor wrote:
Sat Feb 20, 2021 11:17 am
It should be pointed out that wool can mean different things to different people. For example, merino is just a sheep from an area, usually oz or nz. Pashmina can mean taken anywhere from the pashmina goat or the finest is taken only from the chin area. Then, how it is spun into thread can also dictate softness.
Technically, wool is fiber from sheep. But it's a convenient term for talking about any natural animal fibers. Having spun wool, I disagree with you that spinning dictates softness, since softness is strictly determined by the type of fiber. :) How it is spun might determine its texture but not its softness.
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by gb » Sat Feb 20, 2021 5:11 pm

I have eczema, so super sensitive skin. There is no wool, wool blend, "merino", or anything else that works for me. Synthetic base layers...
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by CaptCO » Sat Feb 20, 2021 6:30 pm

gb wrote:
Sat Feb 20, 2021 5:11 pm
I have eczema, so super sensitive skin. There is no wool, wool blend, "merino", or anything else that works for me. Synthetic base layers...
Another plus with synthetic bases, (at least for me), is the weight of bringing an extra long sleeve shirt is slim to none :horns:

DWood put me on the Salomon X Ultra (Winter High Top edition), PASS!

Spy goggles - PASS

Arbor Bindings - FAIL

BD axes - PASS

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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by dpage » Sat Feb 20, 2021 6:49 pm

BD aluminum Z poles - Fail between bending one planting it coming off Terra Tomah and the wear on the clip when folding them for storage not keeping them locked

Fancy Feast cat food can stove - Pass light weight, inexpensive, never had an issue boiling water on any backpacking trip

Patagonia silk weight Capilene -Pass I haven't had any issues with chaffing, still have shirts that are 15 years old and are in great shape.

Defeet Aireator socks - Not sure if I give them a Pass or Fail. I keep buying them because I like how thin they are for summer conditions but I wear them out in a season.
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by nyker » Sat Feb 20, 2021 9:50 pm

shelly+ wrote:
Sat Feb 20, 2021 11:04 am
nyker wrote:
Sat Feb 20, 2021 10:42 am
Shelly, seems I need to go shopping with you next time!

I found the alpaca sweaters in a little market in Ecuador years ago. One was very lightweight, one heavier weight.
Damn... I knew "locally somewhere in South America" would be your answer!! Are they handknit?
I think they are, from recollection, they all seemed a little different when I was looking at them.
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Re: Gear Pass or Fail

Post by nyker » Mon Mar 08, 2021 8:37 pm

So I picked up a pair of these in the fall, more to do yardwork outside, and needed something waterproof to deal with carrying wet lumber and snowy/wet logs all afternoon without having my hands freeze as it got colder.

https://www.carhartt.com/products/Pipel ... Glove-A726

But as I used them for chores, I found them increasingly comfortable, they kept their waterproofness and are very lightweight and can take a liner. They started making their way into my pack and I like them more than most of my other gloves. I've used them in -15*F temps in frequent contact with snow and they were good. If I were standing still for an extended period, I'd be warmer with a liner, but moving they were good "as is" at those temps. They even come with a liner. They don't have as much palm protection as a leather reinforced thicker glove for palming a bare headed axe for any extended period, but they are good enough and a liner helps there.

They are also 1/3-1/2 of the cost of comparable ski/mountaineering gloves...

*PASS*
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