Most Breathable Waterproof fabric?
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Sanad Toukhly
(Red_Fox) - MLife

Locale: South Florida
Most Breathable Waterproof fabric? on 02/08/2010 12:08:12 MST Print View

What is the most breathable waterproof fabric I can buy to make my own Rain jacket? It seems that all the waterproof fabrics available for sale by the yard are not breathable at all. I would like the fabric to be light as well.

Has there been any updates on the availability of eVent fabric for the general public?

-Sid

Edited by Red_Fox on 02/08/2010 12:10:08 MST.

Jeremy Greene
(tippymcstagger) - F

Locale: North Texas
Re: Most Breathable Waterproof fabric? on 02/08/2010 13:08:39 MST Print View

Perhaps use a Dri Ducks poncho or 2 for yardage? Cheaper than most fabric and reviewers here seem to like the breathability, but not the durability.

I'm very interested to read the results of this thread.

Javan Dempsey
(jdempsey)

Locale: The-Stateless-Society
Re: Re: Most Breathable Waterproof fabric? on 02/08/2010 15:30:30 MST Print View

Me too, been trying to figure out the question of eVent in particular, although I haven't exactly gone so far as to make any phone calls..

Maybe it's time for a split-buy..

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
waterproof and breathable on 02/08/2010 15:51:42 MST Print View

Waterproof and breathable = Goretex

I didn't say that it was lightweight or cheap. If you add those factors in, you may get a completely different answer.

I've purchased several garments of Goretex, and I've sewn projects using Goretex. When properly applied and handled, it works good.
--B.G.--

Samuel C. Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
W/B for MYOG on 02/08/2010 18:03:44 MST Print View

Sanad,
There are a number of articles searchable on this site that lead to the conclusion that eVent is best.
Wild Things is a small manufacturer of climbing apparel in N. Conway NH that uses eVent.
If approached in the right way, they might be willing to sell you a few yards of the lighter denier material with the eVent laminate.
But it would be expensive. So, wonder if it would not be cheaper to just purchase one of the lighter denier Integral Designs jackets ready made.
There has also been much discussion on this site of the lighter Membrain Strata used by Marmot, but so far as I know, no comparative testing as has been done with the Strata and eVent. A number of posters on this site have felt subjectively that Strata is more breathable than the Goretex, however.
I am a little leary of the manufacturers' claims, and tend to wait for some good test results before investing a lot of money. Got caught on the open Presidential ridge near Mt Washington in an Epic jacket in a sudden high wind hail and rain storm that turned the jacket instantly sopping wet from the inside out. Visibility was less than 10 feet. If I hadn't had a hooded Goretex pulloever from REI in my daypack, I'd have been in very bad trouble.
Sam

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
W/B fabrics on 02/08/2010 18:13:05 MST Print View

I think some of the choice in W/B fabrics will depend on the weather. I think hot/humid weather will point the consumer one way, and cold/wet weather will point him another way.

For example of cold/wet, look at what ski patrollers wear, mostly Goretex, or something closely related to Goretex. Part of that may be since it is slightly heavy, and maybe that does not matter too much on the slopes. Look what the downhill ski patrollers wear, and then look what the X-C ski patrollers wear.
--B.G.--

Sanad Toukhly
(Red_Fox) - MLife

Locale: South Florida
Re: Re: Most Breathable Waterproof fabric? on 02/09/2010 11:48:01 MST Print View

As far as eVent is concerned, it seems out the question for now as nobody is willing to sell me any. If anyone knows of a source that will sell eVent, please let me know.

Jeremy,
Good call on the DriDucks ponchos, I didn't think of that. I currently use the Rainshield version of the Driducks jacket for most of my trips. I may be able to make an even lighter version of that jacket, however.

As far as the Membrane Strata that Marmot uses, does any one know if this is sold by that yard anywhere?

-Sid

Edited by Red_Fox on 02/09/2010 11:55:17 MST.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: waterproof and breathable on 02/09/2010 13:59:32 MST Print View

> Waterproof and breathable = Goretex
Bear in mind that Gore-Tex uses a PU membrane for the waterproof/breathable layer. All the Teflon does these days is to serve a sa smooth base layer for the PU.

What this means is that other PU-coated fabrics are also WP/B, to various degrees.

I agree with OP that a reason many ski patrollers use Gore-Tex jackets is the heavy-weight fabrics they can get.

Cheers

Lori Pontious
(lori999) - M

Locale: Central Valley
Re: Re: Re: Most Breathable Waterproof fabric? on 02/09/2010 15:41:31 MST Print View

OWFINC sells Epic, Goretex, Supplex, and a number of other WPB fabrics of similar build but generic type. Might ask them about Event.

ETA: I was going to get some ripstop anyway so asked while I had OWFINC on the phone - they used to have a generic of eVent but no longer do. She didn't have a real clear idea of why it's so hard to find. They DO have different weights of Goretex, and part of my order was lighter ripstop Goretex 3 ply. She said the ripstop or taffeta would be lighter.

Edited by lori999 on 02/09/2010 16:27:56 MST.

Sanad Toukhly
(Red_Fox) - MLife

Locale: South Florida
Goretex on 02/09/2010 19:41:59 MST Print View

Goretex is too heavy for me, I would like something lighter.

-Sid

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
reply to Lori on 02/09/2010 21:28:59 MST Print View

OWFINC does not list the fabric weight for any Goretex, or at least I couldn't find it on the web page.

Most of the fabric vendors list the fabric weight (like ounces per square yard) for each type, and that is what I shop by. I will admit that some of the stated fabric weights are wrong or misleading, but that is another topic.

--B.G.--

Lori Pontious
(lori999) - M

Locale: Central Valley
Re: Goretex on 02/09/2010 22:54:26 MST Print View

There are different weights of many fabrics... there are different kinds of "Goretex." The kind I am getting is not terribly heavy, certainly nothing like the kind often seen on jackets. For my application it will be adequate.

And calling and asking was not difficult to do...

I agree, OWFINC could make it easier and post the weights, not sure why they don't. Some things they do explain clearly where other sites do not - they do say the 1.1 oz weight of silnylon is the weight of the fabric before they add the silicone.

Have you seen the BPL article comparing different WPBs?

http://www.backpackinglight.com/cgi-bin/backpackinglight/00316.html

I noticed that Epic isn't half bad, either, and unlike eVent it appears to be available. And there are nylon and polyester types of eVent....

Edited by lori999 on 02/09/2010 22:55:16 MST.

Sanad Toukhly
(Red_Fox) - MLife

Locale: South Florida
Hydrolite on 02/10/2010 09:38:28 MST Print View

TheRainShed.com has a 2-layer WP/B fabric called Hydrolite that is claimed to be 2.6 oz/yd. Not pricey either. I might try it out.

-Sid

Edited by Red_Fox on 02/10/2010 09:43:04 MST.

Misfit Mystic
(cooldrip)

Locale: "Grand Canyon of the East"
EPIC availability on 02/10/2010 09:48:12 MST Print View

OWFINC has EPIC in multiple weights. A good resource for MYOG materials for us outdoor types:

http://www.specialtyoutdoors.com/tips/sources.asp

It offers links to a number of different sources, including a couple I wasn't familiar with.

Nicolas L.
(MSLdesign) - F
fabric retailer review on breathability on 02/10/2010 09:48:38 MST Print View

See the shelby website for a great review on this subject:

http://www.shelby.fi/tips/breathability.pdf

From this review, it appears that it's the Schoeller WB-Formula that is the most breathable... But the question remains: could you buy it on internet?

Good luck!

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: fabric retailer review on breathability on 02/10/2010 10:09:58 MST Print View

Nicolas... you are reading the graph in reverse order. WB-F is the worse breathing. It's the heavily armored winter fabric from Schoeller. It's focus is extreme protection rather than breathability.

The best fully wp/b material that you can purchase on that graph is eVENT. Dryskin isn't wp/b, just water resistant.

Ack! Maybe Ben is right. I can't seem to keep away from WP/B threads.

--mark

Misfit Mystic
(cooldrip)

Locale: "Grand Canyon of the East"
EPIC on 02/10/2010 10:24:40 MST Print View

I'll say this as well about EPIC: it's not the best material for a rain jacket. In a downpour, you'll get wet. It is however, the best MYOG material I've found for shell pants. Very breathable, very lightweight, and since shell pants don't see the same kind of direct impact from precipitation as the top of a shell jacket, you stay dry. Just don't kneel or sit on a wet surface.

Sanad Toukhly
(Red_Fox) - MLife

Locale: South Florida
Re: Re: fabric retailer review on breathability on 02/10/2010 10:57:46 MST Print View

"The best fully wp/b material that you can purchase on that graph is eVENT." -Mark Verber

I agree that eVent is the best fully WP/B fabric Mark, however, you cannot purchase said fabric. If you know of a source that sells eVent fabric, please do tell. The only reason I am willing to settle for another material is because I have been unsuccessful in finding anyone to sell me eVent.

-Sid

Bradford Rogers
(Mocs123) - MLife

Locale: Southeast Tennessee
Re: Re: Re: fabric retailer review on breathability on 02/10/2010 11:11:10 MST Print View

Oware has some generic "eVent" and might be willing to sell you some by the yard.

Nicolas L.
(MSLdesign) - F
WRShoeller Most Breathable Waterproof fabric on 02/10/2010 11:56:37 MST Print View

Shame on me!