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Addie Bedford
(addiebedford) - MLife

Locale: Montana
Westcomb Chilko Down Sweater Review on 09/21/2010 14:14:46 MDT Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Westcomb Chilko Down Sweater Review

Eugene Smith
(Eugeneius) - MLife

Locale: Nuevo Mexico
"Westcomb Chilko Down Sweater Review" on 09/21/2010 15:07:41 MDT Print View

"For about the same money you can purchase a Western Mountaineering Flight Jacket which weighs about the same, or a Feathered Friends Hyperion Jacket which costs $50 less. Now, that’s a tough decision…"

Nice review Will, thanks! It's a nice sweater, seems like a relatively simple decision to me though, I'd save the money and opt for the latter two options. Not sure I particularly care for the Polartec Powershield collar and hem, a more simple elastic band would save some weight and not absorb moisture, and using the standard #3 YKK zipper would also save a little weight, considering as you noted in your tests that the Westcomb Chilkos stitching allowed a significant amount of water through the seams in the puddle test. What good does it serve the wearer having a waterproof RiRi zipper up front if everywhere else on the jacket isn't going to hold back water very effectively? The fleece lined pockets are cool if not wearing gloves, around town possibly, but a Pertex lined down filled pocket would be simpler and lighter. My dirty hands would turn the white lining of the Chilko a muddy brown and black from pot soot after 2 trips. The Pertex Quantum is a nice touch, allowing all 3.25ozs. of 850+ down to fully loft, with only one downside, the shimmering gold color definitely requires a Rick James sense of style and taste. Some bright red down booties and a pair of green Capilene tights would go well with the Chilko.

Edited by Eugeneius on 09/21/2010 15:09:30 MDT.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
OR... on 09/21/2010 18:34:56 MDT Print View

I'll take my EB jacket at less money even at full retail. I doubt if the Westcomb jacket is actually any better for the extra money. I'm very happy with the EB jacket as an insulating layer. Wouldn't want to go bushwhacking in it W/O a shell, but as lightweight insulation it's great.

I'm taking it on a Tahoe Rim Trail trip in October and I know I'll use it on chilly mornings and probably some nights in my bag too B/C, without it, by experience my WM Megalite bag is only good to 27 F. all zipped up and cinched down.

I'm happy Will has taken on the task of reviewing lightweight down jackets because they seem to be an essential part of spring and fall gear and even 3 season gear, depending on your locale and altitude.

Edited by Danepacker on 09/22/2010 16:05:34 MDT.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
westcomb on 09/21/2010 18:47:14 MDT Print View

ive noticed that westcomb almost overstitches its products

my simple wool hoodie is double stitched everywhere .... it'll never come apart at the seams ... lol

ive found that their build quality is superb and its made in Vancouver Canada ...

id still buy a $50 EB downlight any day though for the value

Martin RJ Carpenter
(MartinCarpenter) - F
Slight identity crisis on 09/22/2010 03:52:38 MDT Print View

Fascinating really - you use a really light shell fabric/great down to, at some expense!, shave a few grams off the overall garment weight but then put it all back again in terms of over quilting it/extra features etc.

I guess it sells but you do have to think that the microlight bits/down sweater seem much more certain of their purpose in life and might be better for it.