Merino over or under R1
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Dan Geiger
(Ramcam)
Merino over or under R1 on 02/24/2013 12:33:38 MST Print View

I usually wear 150 merino when hiking and understand that it wicks fairly well to keep your temperature fairly even when stopping and starting.I also have a 260 merino for cold conditions which i have never worn yet.The 260 weighs quite a bit and can get heavier with sweat so i ordered a Patagonia R1 pullover.Would the R1 wick water from the merino drawing it out while the merino holds warmth under or would the reverse be better?
I'm hoping the R1 will pull the moisture out of the merino and dry quicker so i can then add a primaloft layer when inactive.Thanks

jeffrey armbruster
(book) - M

Locale: Northern California
"Merino over or under R1" on 02/24/2013 13:38:49 MST Print View

Rule number one: "merino keeps you warm even when wet".
Rule number two: "never get your layers wet in cold weather".
Rule number three: "you'll sweat when active in a merino base".
I've never been able to square this, so I wear capilene as a base and synthetics over that in winter, until heavier layers. But I understand that lots of people love merino, it works for them!

Still, I'd wear the lighter merino layer and not sweat in the first place. Otherwise probably the merino over the R1.

Mark Fowler
(KramRelwof) - MLife

Locale: Namadgi
Lighter weights better on 02/24/2013 15:56:03 MST Print View

My own take on this dilemma is that merino works best at 150gsm or lighter as the benefits of merino are not outweighed by the degree of moisture retention. This is due to the light fabric only being able to absorb a small amount of sweat and will dry quite quickly. Heavier weights will absorb more moisture and thus dry off much slower. I used to use a 195gsm merino top but no longer use it for the above reason. The 150 weight works well for me. I add a 100 weight fleece on top for cold conditions.

Rick M
(rmjapan) - F

Locale: London, UK
Re: Merino over or under R1 on 02/24/2013 16:36:08 MST Print View

The R1 Pullover has or should be a snug fit on you for the Power Dry grid fabric to work its magic. So I find it really difficult to wiggle into while wearing Merino wool, both the 100% LW Smartwool and Patagonia's own Merino 1 65/35 blend. It just snags and grabs the R1 making it a unnecessary hassle to get sorted.

My Merino pieces also have a tendency to stretch out on multi-day trips for a looser fit until the next wash dry cycle, making it less efficient wicking. So for me the R1 fits better over a tight synthetic base or next to skin.

On the otherhand, I have had great experiences alpine skiing with the Smartwool LW Merino base layers and hi-loft Merino sweater mid-layer. So perhaps its this wool-on-wool layering the Merino makers selfishly want us to do that works best afterall. But for Winter hiking, this wool system is just heavy and fragile compared to an all synthetic layering system. Merino 1 makes for a nice 3 season alpine top on its own if temps stay below 85F.

Edited by rmjapan on 02/24/2013 16:55:03 MST.

KEN LARSON
(KENLARSON) - MLife

Locale: Western Michigan
UNDER on 02/24/2013 18:13:51 MST Print View

My usual layer is the R1 over wool Ibex 150 T and a MB Alpine (snap) down vest followed with a wind shirt in 20*F Michigan temps. Depending on the wind/wind chill, and cloudiness I usually ventilate after about 1.5mi in one way or another walking at 3.0 mph.

Dan Geiger
(Ramcam)
thanks on 02/26/2013 16:32:05 MST Print View

Thanks for the replies.The 150 i will be using is a body fit and once the R1 gets here i will see how much trouble it is too fit over it.Hopefully the 150 will control the stink and not transfer as quickly to the R1 as i will be it wearing for many days without changing.