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Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there?
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Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Kuhl Wunderer on 05/02/2014 10:14:21 MDT Print View

Thanks Max, i will check it out.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/02/2014 10:44:52 MDT Print View

"Sun protection is good. UPF 30 or 50.

More effective than sunscreen."



I agree to a point. But really, unless you're albino, or you're on a equatorial mountain all day, very few really need a UPF 50 shirt.

I have a combo celtic-germanic type complexion. I have some red in my hair and especially in my beard, lots of freckles, rather light gray blue eyes, but can tan a little. I don't think i've ever experienced a sun burn through any kind of shirt, even thin cotton. I don't like sunscreen much and have been using clothes as my primary sunscreen for years now--i'm that dude on the beach and in the water wearing the white long sleeved shirt and tilley or desert style hat with sunglasses on.

There are conditions i've been in wherein a thin cotton shirt would not be good for UV protection, and i don't advocate black and whites in this area... (there are probably some conditions i've been in wherein i would have been burned if i had just worn a thin, somewhat loosely woven cotton shirt or the like).

Also (in my mind), there is some question of how much of the rise in skin cancer is purely from UV exposure, and how much it is being facilitated by a combo of over use of chemical based sun screens with really crappy, unnatural, and unhealthy diets and lifestyles which has become more and more common the world round.

When i do use sunscreen, i use a home made kind i make, that only has micronized zinc oxide powder in same.

We need a certain amount of sun and UV, in fact, far too many people get too little good vitamin D.

Life Extension magazine talks a lot about the need for a much more vitamin D in the body. One way for that is smart and controlled Sun exposure.

I'm not saying that you can't over do UV, course you can--that is obvious. In todays really interconnected world, you have all kinds of people living in climates that their bodies are not innately adapted to pigment wise. There are a lot of light skinned people living much closer to the equator than their ancestors tended to, and getting far more UV than they can naturally tolerate. So i think wearing clothes in the sun is important, but i do find the issue over hyped, even for my fairly light and burn easy complexion.

Edited by ArcturusBear1 on 05/02/2014 10:46:41 MDT.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/02/2014 11:02:47 MDT Print View

Good info - I need to investigate linen shirt


Maybe the rise in skin cancer is because people use sunscreen which prevents UVB and sunburn, so they're out in the sun more, but the sunscreen does little for UVA which causes skin cancer, so they end up getting more UVA and skin cancer.

If your going to spend a certain amount of time in the sun, then sunscreen is good - partially effective.

But if the sunscreen enables you to spend more time in the sun, you're mis-using the sunscreen. Better to use shirt/hat/pants.

The zinc is effective at stopping UVA, but I hate how it comes off and makes a milky mess everywhere.

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/02/2014 11:07:52 MDT Print View

No one has mention Rail Riders yet.

Expensive, but exactly what you’re looking for.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/02/2014 11:11:16 MDT Print View

Usually i use sun screen on just my face, hands, and legs (if i'm not wearing pants), because i'm usually wearing ls shirts, wide brimmed etc hats, etc when in more intense Sun conditions.

Re: zinc oxide based sunscreens, depends some on the medium it is put in how much it does or doesn't come off. I use a combo of extra virgin coconut with raw shea butter, and when i apply it, try to apply it as light as possible.

From what i've read so far, nano zinc is pretty safe (doesn't penetrate deeply into the skin under normal circumstances), works better at blocking UV and has less of an issue with the milkiness aspect. But currently i make mine with a micronized zinc, which still rubs in mostly clear.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/02/2014 11:33:02 MDT Print View

Hi Aaron, thanks for the suggestion.

A few questions. If you hold the fabric level and you drop some water on the inside of the main part of the fabric, does it sit on same or immediately absorb and spread?

If the latter, do you know if it's a chemical based treatment that they apply?

Is the fabric more breathable than other similar nylon shirts? If it's UPF rated, is it over 30? (that can give a clue to the breathablity compared to other shirts).


Yes, expensive! Out of my price range--i'm near flat broke after this trip to Costa Rica (which, i didn't want to go to but my wife strongly pressured me).

Aaron Sorensen
(awsorensen) - MLife

Locale: South of Forester Pass
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/04/2014 10:03:30 MDT Print View

I have the Eco shirt and pant.
They are 30 UPF and breath excellent.
Water absorbs on the material but dries very fast.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/05/2014 11:57:57 MDT Print View

Thank you for the answers Aaron.

Michael Gartman
(namtrag) - F

Locale: Flatlands of Virginia
another vote for Tamiami on 05/05/2014 12:18:23 MDT Print View

I got a Columbia Super Tamiami on Amazon for $23 a couple of weeks ago. Very lightweight, blocks the sunlight, dries quickly, and stays cool. I got sweaty a couple of times this weekend with it on, and it dried in minutes.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: An Update and another thanks to Max'a'million on 05/11/2014 22:31:32 MDT Print View

So i went to REI Saturday armed with a little bottle with some water in it to test the wicking ability of different nylon shirts there, and to generally check out what's out there for higher quality nylon shirts. (i did ask permission and explained that i just wanted to drop one little drop of water on some shirts to test wicking).


Found that a lot of their nylon shirts did wick, but very little to no information on how this is achieved, whether through a chemical finish or through altered fiber structure etc. A lot of the shirts i found way over priced.

Liked the REI Sahara Tech LS shirt, until i got home and looked it up and found that it has a finish applied to achieve the wicking. Max, i saw the Kuhl Wunderer shirt there. Like it quite a bit. Very thin, somewhat fairly breathable (though not ideal for me), interesting fabric structure and wicked amazingly well--that one little drop o'water just kept spreading and spreading.

Unfortunately, no info anywhere about how the shirt fabric achieves this. Because of the different texture/structure of the fabric, i'm leaning to thinking it may be a permanent fiber type wicking, which is what i'm looking/hoping for. I contacted Kuhl to ask, and am waiting on response.

Meanwhile, saw this shirt pretty discounted at Gander Mountain online, low 40's and free shipping, so decided to just go ahead and get it anyway, finish or no finish.

So far, excellent suggestion Max and appreciate it. I may poke some pin holes in it to further increase breathability a bit in the main fabric.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Expectations? on 05/12/2014 08:40:02 MDT Print View

Hi Justin,

I own a few 100% nylon shirts and pants (Eddie Bauer, TNF, and REI, etc) and they all seem to perform about the same, which fortunately is pretty good. For example, I was glissading for the better part of 4k' in just the nylon pants and shirt yesterday (forgot the damn contractor bag in my truck) and was mostly dry about an hour or so later from hiking. Not sure that I could ask much more of my clothes than that.

Edit to add: Costco had these shirts for about $20. It has some vents on the side and is my new favorite.

http://www.backcountry.com/dakota-grizzly-kenyon-shirt-long-sleeve-mens?ti=UExQIEJyYW5kOjoxOjI4OjEwMDAwMTEzNF9udWxs&skid=DGZ0014-SK-L

Edited by IDBLOOM on 05/12/2014 10:12:11 MDT.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Expectations? on 05/12/2014 12:15:38 MDT Print View

Hi Ian,

I guess to some extent this is one of those, you get what you pay for situations. Those previously mentioned brands you listed are pretty good ones. The shirt i got from Bass Pro, while i don't remember the exact amount i paid for it, i'm pretty sure i paid in the range of 25 to 35 for it, and the brand is World Wide Sportsman.

Also depends some on the climate you're talking about. If i had brought that W.W.S. shirt to Costa Rica, or on my past trip to Puerto Rico, i would have been sweltering because the shirt doesn't wick at all and isn't breathable enough.

But, for cooler and drier conditions, it would be fine, and i still plan to use for those kinds of conditions--it's an otherwise well made shirt. Just not good for late spring or most of summer here in VA where it can get pretty humid and hot. The more humid and hot it is, the more breathability you want and the more wicking you want. And i want that wicking to be a permanent feature, not a finish that will eventually wear off.

Thanks for the Costco shirt mention. Haven't seen that shirt at my local Costco.

I have these great pants made by Prana (got discounted), made out of 53% Hemp, 44% Recycled Polyester, 3% Lycra and they are thin and very breathable. Wish i could find a light colored LS shirt made out of this material because it's great for hot and humid conditions. Wicks well, dries fast, and doesn't build up too much stink as compared to an all synthetic and non treated fabric (the slight majority of fiber being Hemp helps a lot with that). I've only seen dark colors available for the shirt version, and the shirt version seems to have been discontinued.

Nylon would be a lot tougher and more durable, but the above would stand up to long term UV exposure much better.

Edited by ArcturusBear1 on 05/12/2014 12:16:21 MDT.

Ian B.
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Buck Naked on 05/12/2014 13:26:23 MDT Print View

Duluth Trading Co Buck Naked base layer with "93% nylon with 7% spandex fabric" that is.

http://www.duluthtrading.com/store/product/mens-buck-naked-performance-base-layer-shirt-33506.aspx?kw=buck naked&processor=content

David suggested this shirt to me last year and it's been a hit. I ended up buying another five of them for work as I need something that performs to this level for wearing under body armor.

When backpacking, I'll rinse the salt out of it every other day or so. It's completely dry within an hour. Also, no funk at all compared to other blends I've worked with that tend to get a road-kill aroma. I realize I will stink after a couple days it's just that I don't want my clothes to smell worse than I do.

I only have their Buck Naked T shirts and am assuming the long sleeve is the same weight.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Buck Naked on 05/12/2014 19:29:07 MDT Print View

Thanks Ian, looks pretty promising. Plus, you get to tell people that you're sporting Buck Naked. Unfortunately, they only have black for their ls version, and you couldn't pay me to wear black in late spring through summer.

I'll periodically check their site while crossing my fingers and hoping they will get some more colors and sizes in for the ls version.

Great prices--more reasonable and affordable than a lot of those other big name brands that charge over much. I wouldn't have bought the Kuhl shirt if i hadn't gotten it for some 40% off retail price.

Dale Wambaugh
(dwambaugh) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/12/2014 19:53:26 MDT Print View

Polyester base layers will wick, but a nylon button down? Not so much. You can VENT a nylon shirt, but they won't wick and evaporate sweat like a base layer. Of course they will dry, but they won't keep up with my fountain of flop sweat when working hard in hot weather. I've used REI Sahara, Ex Officio, TNF, Mountain Hardwear, etc and they are all pretty much the same stuff. The Columbia Silver Ridge style fabric has the driest feel, IMHO. I like the Silver Ridge pants a lot.

What a nylon button down will do is give good sun, brush and bug protection. I use mine for travel and around town, but have pretty much given up on them for use on the trail. A base layer and breathable wind shirt are my go-to topside combo for hikin'.

Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear1) - F

Locale: On Vacation from BPL
Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/12/2014 20:14:33 MDT Print View

The Kuhl Wunderer nylon shirt i tested seemed to wick really well. One little drop of water spread out very quickly and widely. What i would agree with, is that these kind of nylon shirts don't tend to be ideally breathable as more baselayer type shirts, which tend to be more loosely woven.

It's hard to find mostly all nylon baselayer shirts in general and especially that also wick well (polyester and wool really dominate this area). Ian's suggestion seems pretty good, and if they ever get white or tan in, will get it.

I received an email back from Kuhl. They said the wicking was a permanent fiber feature and not a finish. If it was a little more loosely woven, it would be purrfect. Not sure if trying to poke some pin holes in it would be a good idea or not--i don't want to damage the integrity of the fabric.

I also bought a used shirt on Ebay for pretty cheap, it's 35% Linen and 65% Polyester collared button up shirt. I imagine it will be on the somewhat stinky side, but expect it's moisture handling properties for hot and humid weather will be excellent. My ideal fabric (which doesn't exist that i know of), would be a thin, somewhat loosely woven, 55% nylon to 45% linen or hemp blend.

conor Bury
(cbtiger) - M

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: Any good, light weight/thin, breathable & actually "wicking" nylon shirts out there? on 05/27/2014 19:12:44 MDT Print View

That hasn't been discontinued. Just saw it on the REI website

http://www.rei.com/product/791763/columbia-tamiami-ii-long-sleeve-shirt-mens