"Wear it out" promise

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Ego
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Ego »

For the past few months I've been learning about durable fabrics. I frequently find clothing at the swap meet that was made in the sixties or seventies that appears as new as the day it was made but unfortunately is not fashionable for someone my age. In the past I found several items made from Dyneema a newer fabric that is extremely long lasting and is often used in industrial applications. Patagonia has made some of their Work Wear out of it. I have also found some well used Nomex wildland fire uniforms that could pass as travel clothing. It too seem to be indestructible and the tacticool community has gotten wise to it. They are willing to pay a premium for the versions that look somewhat normal as opposed to obviously military uniform.

Recently I stumbled upon Vollebak, a company using materials science to create 100 year pants and the indestructible jacket. When I first heard their story I thought it sounded like good PR for a company selling a $650 pair of pants. Then I heard one of the founders Steve Tidball on Om Malik's podcast and I found his perspective interesting.

https://om.co/2020/02/05/steve-tidball- ... materials/

Anyhow, the point of this post is that I am starting to see Dyneema and Nomex stuff flowing out of the military and government surplus markets. For those interested in clothing that is virtually impossible to wear out or stain, watch for it. If you have tailoring skills you may be able to create a personal uniform with a timeless style that will last decades.

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Sclass
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Sclass »

This is very interesting. I will keep an eye out for this stuff…as if I actually would know where to find some.

I have some Nomex gloves that I snatched from HP when I worked there. They gave them out free in the stockroom. Great for holding hot stuff and cold stuff. I’m going to assume it’s safe to wear? I thought it was some kind of crazy fiber that could flake off and get in my lungs. I keep the gloves tucked away in a box for this reason.

ETA- oh, it’s just a space age plastic. Like Kevlar. Amazing. Better living through chemistry. My gloves are really stiff and scratchy. I bet they make more pliable versions for garments.

AxelHeyst
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by AxelHeyst »

That is super interesting. The slings climbers use to stay attached to the wall are made out of Dyneema these days. Took a while to get used to how thin they are, but apparently they'll hold up a truck. I wonder garments of the stuff holds up to smell - I've gone all natural fabrics because anything synthetic I get reeks to high heaven within two wears.

Related to durable fabrics, one of my last remaining consumer obsessions has been Filson Tin Cloth gear - jackets and pants. I just found a DIY Tin Cloth recipe:

https://youtu.be/dvZczKZfvF4
16oz microcrystalline wax
2oz pure tung oil
6oz tung oil finish
8oz mineral spirits

mountainFrugal
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by mountainFrugal »

WRT to Dyneema smell, my backpack is a Dyneema Hyperlight pack (a quickly adopted standard for through hikers), and it has never smelled from excessive back sweat on long trips. They are incredibly light, durable and water proof. Back sweat is not the same as arm pits and crotch, but I imagine it would do fine. The price is also coming down for yards of the stuff if you want to DIY some clothing or shelter. I am guessing with these multi-color options that are available now instead of just white and black, there are going to be an increase in consumer level products as well. https://ripstopbytheroll.com/collection ... 2693204016

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Ego
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Ego »

Sclass wrote:
Sat Sep 18, 2021 4:24 am
My gloves are really stiff and scratchy. I bet they make more pliable versions for garments.
They do. I've got a Massif flight suit baselayer shirt like this one that is super comfortable. Similar to a thin durable fleece or brushed cotton. Since they are mil-spec you can buy just about any brand second-hand and they will be identical. They also have long underwear bottoms and regular underwear tight boxer bottoms. I've also got a nomex flight crew balaclava that is warm and fireproof.
AxelHeyst wrote:
Sat Sep 18, 2021 1:34 pm
I've gone all natural fabrics because anything synthetic I get reeks to high heaven within two wears.
We keep a small spray bottle mixture of water with a few drops of mirazyme near the laundry bag. I frequently spray my running gear post workout and then wear it again and again before washing. It really does work. Because you only need a few drops to treat a laundry load it is possible to carry it while traveling.

I own tin cloth packer hats in tan and charcoal that I treated with Sno Seal and a hair dryer. Worked okay but they do not have the cool sheen of the method you suggested. I feel confident I would burn down the building if I were to attempt to melt and blend that recipe.

This began when I found a pair of Triple Aught Design pants at the swap meet in my size. I love them. The fabric stretches but is durable as hell and they look normal. I realized that high end manufacturers are getting access to fabrics that really are different from those seen in the typical throw away clothing.

So I started looking for the fabrics in other garments and discovered that some uniforms are using it as well and they often have features that make them good for hundred-year pants. For instance, reinforced knees, gusseted crotches and those tuxedo-style waistbands that allow for 2-3" expansion or contraction. I have a feeling someone is going to start hoarding them and following the example of the guy at Les Puces, the flea market in Paris, who is patching, altering and selling old chore jackets that had been worn by factory workers in the eighties for more than a hundred euros each.

mountainFrugal
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by mountainFrugal »

Thanks for the tip on the mirazyme @ego. It looks like that company got purchased by Revivex, but reviews seem to remain positive. I look forward to seeing how well it does against my mountainFrugal ultra-running stench. :).

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Ego
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Ego »

@mountainFrugal, my pleasure. My guess is that I would be somewhere behind you on the trail so.... we both win!

Laura Ingalls
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Laura Ingalls »

@ego
We have a saying around here that if you wear out your tent or your clothesline you are living right.

You also sent me down a rabbit whole of looking at Dyeeema bags and Triple Aught Designs (definitely a brand to keep my eyes open for while thrifting).

DH has a pair of Darn Tough socks that have multiple holes after being worn every week for the last ~4 years. He always says they aren’t the most comfortable but they always end up on his feet :roll:

I think I should send them in for replacement. He seems to have ethical qualms about this and that they have done their job.

Anyone want to chime in on the Darn Tough debate?

mountainFrugal
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by mountainFrugal »

Send them in. That company sells more socks because they spend money advertising how tough their socks are knowing that people will not actually send the socks back. I have tried a few pairs of their running socks. Mediocre in quality I would say. I am VERY hard on socks and also very picky as to not get blisters. Bridgedale is my preferred wool sock for hiking or running. Fewer holes, no thin spots, prevent smell fairly well, stay warm when soaked after river crossings, etc. I have a pair of bridgedale running socks that I still wear on shorter runs that are at least 7 years old. By this point they are stretched out a bit but no holes. (Caveat for Darn Tough: have not tried their hiking socks).

[edit] https://www.bridgedale.com/pages/guarantee Not covered for normal wear and tear.

Frita
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Frita »

@Laura Ingalls
Send email in and report back to us.

BTW. I bought a pair of Darn Tough quarter, midweight women’s hikers (50% off sale at a used clothing place, brand new) to replace a five year old pair of Smart-wool. In six hours of moderate hiking with some bouldering, I got heel blisters on both feet. (I am hard on my footwear but haven’t had blisters in years.). And they have an odd fit, barely long enough for my size 7 in women’s (38) and quite wide (I have narrow feet but love a wide toe box.). I am glad to only be out 27 cents and will downgrade to lighter duty.

Western Red Cedar
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Western Red Cedar »

@LI - Another vote to send in the Darn Tough socks. That is why they have that warranty. As I was getting into ERE a few years ago I opted to send in an Osprey backpack, a pair of boots, and a lightweight backpacking tent for repairs, rather than replacing them with new purchases. The customer service at outdoors companies is always great.

I've worn Smartwool socks regularly for my hiking and outdoor activities, but find they wear out now after a few years. I have one pair of Darn Tough socks that I found in the backcountry. They've been awesome and I haven't noticed any issues after three years, but I don't wear them often - mostly on backpacking or cycling trips.

btw- I'm nearing the end of the lifeline for my tent after about 18 years. I guess I must be doing something right :D .

ETA - They did charge a shipping and small repair fee for the bent tent poles. The Osprey fix was free except for the shipping on my end.
Last edited by Western Red Cedar on Thu Sep 23, 2021 4:10 pm, edited 1 time in total.

theanimal
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by theanimal »

I exclusively wear Darn Tough hiking socks. My mom gifts me a pair or 2 each year for my birthday/Christmas. I am very hard on clothing and gear and have found that I still get plenty of holes with the Darn Toughs. I have sent them in before and they do send back a brand new pair. There was a local store here for a while that allowed people to trade them in and they would send a large bundle of holey socks to the company.

The area in which I've had the most problems is pants. I can't seem to find a pair that will last me more than 1.5 years or so before there are huge holes, the crotch blows out, etc. Anyone have any suggestions?

Western Red Cedar
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Western Red Cedar »

@theanimal - When I was working outdoors everyday I found Carhartt double knee work pants the most durable. They may have shifted production to China since then so I'm not sure if they are still the same standard.

jacob
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by jacob »

theanimal wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 1:13 pm
I have sent them in before and they do send back a brand new pair.
What happens if you send in an odd number?

Hristo Botev
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Hristo Botev »

theanimal wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 1:13 pm
The area in which I've had the most problems is pants. I can't seem to find a pair that will last me more than 1.5 years or so before there are huge holes, the crotch blows out, etc. Anyone have any suggestions?
I don't know if it's any kind of suggestion, but I suspect there must be ways to reinforce pants to prevent (or delay) the crotch blows. For me I've got 2 pairs of wool slacks and 1 pair of wool suit pants that I exclusively wear for work and church, and all 3 pairs have had crotch blows that have been patched up and reinforced (once each) by a local seamstress. And that was at least a couple years ago for the most recent patch job, and perhaps as much as 5 for the oldest patch job--and they are still going strong on the reinforced patches.

For jeans (STF levi's 501s), which is what I wear when not at work/church or wearing shorts, I have to have those patched up and reinforced more regularly, as the denim material seems to thin out quicker than wool. I just retired my oldest pair--by turning them into cut-off jean shorts for DW--when the knees FINALLY gave out, after about 8 years and 3 patch jobs on the crotch.

I'm sure there are tech-wear type pants out there that will last a lifetime (or close to it), but I've just never liked wearing synthetic materials. Not because I'm snobbish about the stuff, but just because it seems to me that natural fiber clothes (I'm assuming the denim in Levi's are "natural"?) can be transformed into rags (or jean shorts!) as they wear, whereas the synthetic stuff also just struck me as single-purpose plastic stuff. And I just generally feel less guilty about throwing cotton or wool or whatever into the trash, when it comes time to finally have to do so.

Moral of this story, I really need to learn how my seamstress is able to reinforce my pants so effectively.

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Ego
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Ego »

Western Red Cedar wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 1:22 pm
@theanimal - When I was working outdoors everyday I found Carhartt double knee work pants the most durable. They may have shifted production to China since then so I'm not sure if they are still the same standard.
Hah. I just put on my pair of these I cut off at the beginning of summer. I agree, they are bomb proof. They are getting hard to find second hand. Sizing is old fashioned.... a 32 is actually 32 inches.... so do not buy assuming vanity sizing.

Yesterday I found a pair of pants in one of the piles that would be a good candidate for 100 year pants. They were big so I didn't buy them but took photos of the labels for further research. I believe they are FedEx uniform pants but they did not have the reflective strips. They had reinforced crotch, bottoms and knees.

Image

Image

Laura Ingalls
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Laura Ingalls »

jacob wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 1:25 pm
What happens if you send in an odd number?
Loss is specifically excluded on the darn tough warranty.

If I buy high end socks (smart wool or darn tough) I typically buy two of the exact same pair. I had two pairs of smart wool socks I bought early on 2013 after the house fire. I have tossed two of them for massive holes while two are still in my sock drawer.

theanimal
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by theanimal »

jacob wrote:
Thu Sep 23, 2021 1:25 pm
What happens if you send in an odd number?
I left a sock out last time because it was an odd number. I think their website says you have to send in a pair.

Laura Ingalls
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by Laura Ingalls »

Socks mailed back today :D

mountainFrugal
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Re: "Wear it out" promise

Post by mountainFrugal »

This may be the most discussed pair of socks that Darn Tough has ever received for a new pair. lol. :)

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