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questions for you down jacket gurus
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ben wood

Locale: flatlands of MO
questions for you down jacket gurus on 11/11/2011 08:30:06 MST Print View

I currently have and have liked my patagonia down sweater. I like the warmth level as it seems to be versatile for my needs and uses. However, the fit is just too baggy and boxy. (I lost about 20lbs since I first bought it as well)

So my question is..... what jackets would you recommend that would offer approximately the same level of insulation as my down sweater but fit a little slimmer?

I've looked at the pata UL down jacket, it uses the same fill weight as the down sweater and is a slim fit. So i'm guessing it would be close. Other companies don't say much about the fit. I like the looks and specs of the Montane Nitro and Rab Microlight, but have no idea as to the fit. I've also heard that Mont-bell fits a little slimmer but have never tried one on.


jason quick

Locale: A tent in my backyard - Melbourne
Montane info on 06/08/2012 01:35:49 MDT Print View

I'm no down guru...but I too would love to know more about the Montane Nitro.

Mike M
(mtwarden) - MLife

Locale: Montana
MB on 06/08/2012 07:42:45 MDT Print View

Montbell's UL and Ex Light both fit a little trimmer than the Patagonia sweater (I've owned both)

the Patagonia UL, besides the price, looks like a nice jacket- I did see them at a significant discount a couple of weeks ago

I'd also look at the WM Flash, gets good reviews, has a hood, but still pretty svelte- of course they aren't exactly giving them away either :)

congrats on the weight loss!


David Affleck
No guru... on 06/08/2012 07:44:12 MDT Print View

I'm the furthest thing possible from a guro. So, don't know how helpful this will be, but... My Patagonia UL down hoodie, in size L, fits my 6', 175lb frame quite trim. Trim enough to fit nicely under my size L Houdini. Trim enough that a 100W fleece pullover doesn't really fit very well underneath.

- Dave

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
Hadron on 06/08/2012 07:49:22 MDT Print View

I have a Stoic Hadron. It is trimmer and has longer arms-perfect fit for me. It's really a good deal at Dept of Goods too.

Jacob D
(JacobD) - F

Locale: North Bay
EB on 06/08/2012 08:17:29 MDT Print View

Ben, are you tall?

I'm no guru, but my Eddie Bauer First Ascent down sweater is a nice fit on my tall-slim frame. They offer tall sizes, which I need at 6'-3. If you are tall, these are great. You dont have to size up to get sleeves that fit.

I don't know about the regular fit though.

Stephan Doyle
Re: questions for you down jacket gurus on 06/08/2012 11:42:59 MDT Print View

The Patagonia Down Sweater is probably the boxiest cut of any you'd take a serious look at. Rab has a great cut - slimmer, but longer too.

Jacob Smith
(Wrongturn) - MLife

Locale: On the AT
Re on 06/08/2012 13:12:42 MDT Print View

At 160 the medium Montbell EXlight fits very snugly over a silk weight base layer and a medium Patagonia r1 zip without effecting the loft.

Christopher Yi
(TRAUMAhead) - F

Locale: Cen Cal
Re: questions for you down jacket gurus on 06/08/2012 13:13:57 MDT Print View

I have a medium Rab Microlight Alpine Jacket (hooded version). I'm 5'8", 180lbs, average build, and normally wear a medium. Rab is roomy in the torso, sleeves are a tad long, and it's a bit tight in the arm pits. I would've gone large, but I picked mine up off gear swap. I also have a Montbell UL Down Parka in medium, and it has no fit problems like the Rab.

Edited by TRAUMAhead on 06/08/2012 13:14:27 MDT.

Jason Cravens

Locale: Cumberland Plateau
mont bell on 06/08/2012 13:52:00 MDT Print View

I have the Mont Bell UL and it runs small IMO. I normally wear a L jacket and I bought a L down jacket. I find it fits just perfect, not baggy or too tight. I am 6'0 200 FWIW.

If I had it to do over, I would have opted for one with a hood also.


Ed Hayes
(ejhayes) - F

Locale: Northwest
agree on Montbell on 06/08/2012 14:04:39 MDT Print View

They seem to fit slightly smaller for each size than most American companies (MB is a Japanese company).

I am 5'11", 165 lbs and a medium MB Alpine Light is a great fit.

I also struggle with sizing. I find I am often between a S and M in most companies.

Edited by ejhayes on 06/08/2012 14:06:19 MDT.

Devon Cloud

Locale: Southwest
fit on 06/08/2012 16:22:17 MDT Print View

I am no expert on snug fit down jackets, but I would think the snugger the fit the more compressed the insulation would be thus less effective?

Richard Lyon
(richardglyon) - MLife

Locale: Bridger Mountains
Down jacket fits on 06/08/2012 20:53:07 MDT Print View

Having owned and liked MontBell Down Inner and EX Light Down sweaters, I'd say they run true to size (in my case, XL) though slightly short for my 37 inch sleeves.

If buying now I'd definitely consider Westcomb, a Canadian company (break-off from Arc'Teryx), that makes jackets and vests with a very trim, athletic cut. They weren't selling down sweaters or vests when I was buying, but they do now. Feathered Friends also sells trim down jackets, though in my opinion you need to size up.

eric chan
(bearbreeder) - F
EB on 06/08/2012 21:24:01 MDT Print View

EB FA downlight .. i use my vest every day ... and if it ever goes kaput or you arent happy with it, just take it back ..

or whatever is on sale from REI/backcontry ... riskless purchase as youll be able to try and return ... and it has no questions asked warranty

i would personally shy away from smaller brands that dont have said warranty, as you may be unhappy with it or it may leak down more than youd like ... unless you are chasing every last gram, i personally dont see any functional difference between 800+ fill jackets except for the amount of down, the fit, and perhaps a few features ... and of course the price

andrew brown
(abrown3mtg) - F

Locale: High Rockies
I adore my rab vest and microlight hooded on 06/09/2012 03:39:32 MDT Print View

I have the vest in a medium (5'9" 150+ lbs)k and the jacket in small... Fit is slender and absolutely perfect. Quality is top notch, I wear them both VERY frequently and have had zero down shedding from either. seem to actually repel water reasonably as well. I bought the vest in a medium as I wear it over an arc'teryx covert hoodie and wanted to feel less restricted, and for a base layer plus simply the down hoody/jacket, the small has been spectacular. I also have seen these come available at very reasonable prices lately.... I think i paid 119 for my microlight hooded jacket, and around 100 for the vest. Two of my most used and coveted pieces of gear. from travel, to hiking, to skiing, to backpacking, to car camping, they are always along for the ride.....

andrew brown
(abrown3mtg) - F

Locale: High Rockies
Re: fit on 06/09/2012 03:41:47 MDT Print View

general rule of thumb as described to me is that you want as form fitting as possible to minimize air space while not compressing the down excessively.... a pretty delicate balance for sure!

josh wagner
(StainlessSteel) - F
size down on 06/09/2012 13:21:33 MDT Print View

why not just size down 1 size of your current patagonia that you're happy with?

Ben Crocker
(alexdrewreed) - M

Locale: Kentucky
EB on 06/11/2012 13:38:33 MDT Print View

I have tried the Eddie Bauer First Ascent stuff because they have tall sizes. The sleeve length on their gear is great for me. The problem is that the body is big enough to fit me and you both in it. The Stoic regular sizes are better for the tall but not big people.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Eddie Bauer First Ascent Down Sweater on 06/11/2012 21:22:43 MDT Print View

Jacob and "My Other Brother Eric" have EBs and I agree with them. I really like my EB Down Sweater (the one in my avatar). I've have had it for three years of around town and on trail use. Great quality.

I'm 5' 10" and kinda slim but with a 43" chest. The EB Down Sweater fits very well.