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Breathable Cuben?
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Ceph Lotus
(Cephalotus) - MLife

Locale: California
Breathable Cuben? on 10/04/2011 17:22:43 MDT Print View

Zpacks is now using a 1.42 oz/sqyd waterproof breathable cuben fiber fabric, and created a new rain jacket out of it. Anyone knows how this breathable cuben compares to something like eVent or Gore Tex?

Edited by Cephalotus on 10/04/2011 17:28:57 MDT.

Brad Walker

Locale: SoCal
Ouch on 10/04/2011 17:27:40 MDT Print View

$60/yard...but at least it's available I guess.

From the Materials tab on zpacks:
1.42 oz/sqyd Waterproof Breathable Cuben Fiber Fabric New! Finally waterproof breathable cuben fiber is here! This is probably the lightest 3 layer wpb fabric in existence, perfect for your ultralight jackets, bivies and other projects.

The fabric is a three layer laminate with high strength Dyneema fibers in the middle. In our testing the strength, waterproofness, and breathability have all proved to be pretty good. Our jackets for example are breathable enough to sleep in or hike in (if it is cold out) without getting clammy. The fabric is shiny on one side, and matte on the other. Either side can be inside or outside.

Due to the high cost of this fabric it is sold in half yard increments. One half yard would get you a piece 18" by 54". A typical jacket might take about 2 yards. Scroll down the page for waterproof zippers.

Weight: 1.42 oz/sqyd (48.3 g/m²)
Roll width: 54" (137 cm)
Price: $30 per HALF linear yard ($60 per linear yard)

Colin Krusor
(ckrusor) - M

Locale: Northwest US
Breathability on 10/04/2011 22:09:31 MDT Print View

There is a good thread about the WPB cuben somewhere...Steve Evans and Javan Dempsey discussed it at length. The breathability specs are poor compared to eVent, and about on par with old fashioned 1990s-era Goretex, if I remember correctly.

Javan Dempsey

Locale: The-Stateless-Society
Re: Breathability on 10/04/2011 22:14:04 MDT Print View

This material is kind of strange. Richard N tested the air permeability and saw zero transfer afaik, which doesn't seem to imply much breathability, although many people have reported good anecdotal breathability.

I haven't played with it much since I initially got a hold of it.

My big question: How is he bonding the seams? You can't effectively glue PTFE, and the stuff I had was PTFE on both sides. Contact cement would stick, but it was stone easy to peel apart and ruin the PTFE layer.

It can be ultrasonically or laser bonded afaik, but that's a heavy expense.

Edited by jdempsey on 10/04/2011 22:32:16 MDT.

Chris Lucas
(ChemE) - F

Locale: SC
Cuben Tape on 10/05/2011 16:12:37 MDT Print View

I know Evan really likes the cuben-backed tape that Cubic Tech offers. I've never fooled with it personally but may have to soon since a few yards of this breathable cuben are calling to me from Florida.

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: Cuben Tape on 10/06/2011 10:30:13 MDT Print View

Hey Chris,
Got any info on the cuben backed tape from CubicTech? I didn't know cubic they were offering it. I wouldn't mind testing it out, especially since it comes straight from the cuben fiber manufacturer.

Javan Dempsey

Locale: The-Stateless-Society
Re: Cuben Tape on 10/06/2011 18:18:35 MDT Print View

Yeah ditto what Steven said.

That being said, that stuff wouldn't work for the 3-layer equivalent WPB cuben I had. It had PTFE layers on both sides, which even if you could bond them, they aren't strong enough to resist much. I did manage to get some acceptable adhesion, but a light pull would rip the ptfe off the laminate.

Chris Lucas
(ChemE) - F

Locale: SC
None on 10/09/2011 13:22:00 MDT Print View

Hey Guys,

No, I don't know anything about it. I'll see what I can find out from Evan or better yet maybe he'll drop by and fill us in himself.

Steven Evans
(Steve_Evans) - MLife

Locale: Canada
Re: Re: Cuben Tape on 10/11/2011 10:33:45 MDT Print View

I contacted Cubic Tech and they are indeed offering 2 types of tape:

1) single sided re-enforced version.
2) double sided non re-enforced version.

I bought a 1/2" wide roll of both and will let you know how they work out.