Keeping Gore-Tex-type-stuff Waterproof

Discussion in 'Sports, Adventure Training and Events' started by therealbigdizzle, Aug 27, 2010.

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  1. Hi Guys

    Working out in the pissing rain this weekend, I have ascertained that 2 of my waterproof breathable jackets are not as waterproof as they once were. The North Face one let in more water than it kept out and I was freezing, the Sprayway one (only been washed twice, and in Nikwax Tech Wash both times) let a little through but it wasn't half as heavy rain.

    I have sprayed both with Grangers Re-Pruf prior to coming out as per the instructions. It seems to have performed the sum total of **** all. The wash in stuff has been not-recommended as it cloggs the pores.

    Neither are actual Goretex, they are both manufacturers-own copies. My Army GoreTex (actual Gore) has never let water in, despite a lifetime of abuse and never having been sprayed or washed in Tech Wash.

    I am thus taking the Army one out in my daysack today in case of another downpour, but has anyone any advice about getting the jackets (particularly the Sprayway) back to their former waterproofness? My warm layer is down insulated so getting water on the inside is really not preferable.

    Or is Gore the only breathable fabric that actually works, and should I just go and flash the buck and get a Gore / Berghaus as a more permanent solution?
  2. But but but... I've read numerous posts of yours advocating these products.

    ...blah blah drone Nikwax... blah blah Grangers Re-Pruf...

    Your surely not telling me that you've been spouting uninformed drivel all this time?

    I feel robbed, I've been following your kit recommendations religiously and now feel that I may have wasted a lot of money.

    I'm not angry Dizzle, just disappointed.
  3. *ouch*.... someone paid attention or did his research.
  4. Sorry but I have no miracle cheap answer. My experience including Gortex, which does give up eventually, and others for fell walking and several different types of motorcycle waterproof is that everything has its day and reproofing sometimes works and sometimes doesn't, including with the same reproof chemicals on the same garment. So when something leaks I try a 'recommended' [ideally by me since it's worked in the past] reproof and if that doesn't work it's time for a new one. In general over 30 years I've found you get what you pay for so I always buy the best I can afford.

    On the subject of wet and warm I've yet to find a substitute for wool. Trawlermen used to wear something called Abwool which was spun without washing out the lanolin [on a trawler no one comments about body odour]. You probably can't buy this any more but you can buy lanolin solutions to add to woollen clothing which effectively keep the wool waterproof and thus a lot warmer.
  5. I do believe I only commented on military kit, and I maintain that my smock does not let water in despite just being a normal issue one. The same for my DPM goretex. I used nikwax on the smock. I think the Grangers may be the weak link - this IS disappointing because Tundra recommended it.

    My boots have always been nikwaxed and I think my feet were the only dry part of my body, so I think it's nikwax from here on!
  6. wedge_cadman

    wedge_cadman War Hero Reviewer Book Reviewer

    In my experience of both nikwax and grangers reproofer, i have found the Grangers 2 in 1 to be the better product.

    Both brands do what they say they do, Nikwax reproofer and any spray on is a coating on your jacket, whilst it does what it says it tends to rub off at the impact points, ie rucksack straps. The Grangers 2 in 1 soaks into the fabric when washing and proofs after a short tumble dry.

    As for blocking the pores of the material i haven't heard that before, one point to note is that the breathability of the jacket is dramatically reduced when the outer layer is wet. Just like you and I cant breathe underwater, neither can your jacket. So if you are sweating it's going to be wet in there.
    After 90 minutes of rain Gore still holds 30% moisture inside the jacket whereas System Dual Protection (i know you havent heard of it) holds 4.7% of moisture.. Testing done by Leeds University.

    As stated buy the best jacket you can afford, Ch5 Gadget show tested 3 jackets, the Berghaus came off worst in test, beaten by a cheap Regatta. These days Brand doesn't necessarily = Quality.

    (I own an Outdoor Shop)

  7. Thanks for the advice. I will look up a replay on the jackets. I haven't heard of 'System dual Protection' - who is currently manufacturing with that?

    The only reason I raised the case with Gore is that I am currently only 'using' 2 actual Gore branded products - Altberg boots and an Army DPM MVP jacket - and both hold the rain out consistently.

    I wasn't having any issues on the impact point, mainly the arms actually. The theory about wash in - from a Nikwax rep - is that when washing breathable systems, the proofer gets into the inner layer as well as the outer layer, affecting it's breathability properties, and said I should use wash-in on my smock (which I do, and it's really, really good - spent a day out in pissing rain last year in my smock and nothing got in) but use spray on for my breathable garments.

    Many thanks for your advice, I will check out the Grangers 2-in-1 (is that wash and re-proof at the same time or something) before buying a better jacket. I thought the North Face would be pretty darn good at an original price tag of £180 (actually, it was when I bought it!)
  8. wedge_cadman

    wedge_cadman War Hero Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Most people haven't heard of it, a company called Keela developed it, you don't see a lot of their gear in the shops as their major contracts are with MoD, Police, Fire and Rescue and Mountain Rescue. Check out the Keela Munro Jacket at around £170 it is in my opinion one of the best jackets i've come across, it's the jacket some MR teams wear. Also The Spectrum for value and the Cumulus for lightweight are excellent.. Sales Pitch Over ;) (Actually no - I sell Altbergs as well) Sales Pitch Over..

    yes the 2in1 is a wash and reproofer, as long as you haven't used a Bio powder on your jacket it will work fine.

    one reason your army Gore performs is due to the grade of the material, DPM waterproofs tend to be made from Goretex Performance shell a hard wearing bomb proof material, whereas civvy jackets tend to use Pro Shell for weight and feel properties.

  9. This is the big one when using wash-in re-proofers. ANY residual soap powder, fabric softener or whatever in the washing machine will scupper your efforts. Before re-proofing, take out the powder drawer and scrub it clean, refit it, then flush the machine through with an empty wash cycle. Do not overload with kit to be re-proofed. A jacket and trousers is about the lot in one go.
    Then tumble dry in accordance with the care label (get a bird to decode this) with the zip done up then iron with a cool iron. The aim is to get the surface smooth to keep the rain in droplets, rather than wetting out the fabric.
  10. Dump the synthetic crap and go for ventile. Much easier to re-proof too if it ever requires it.




  11. Great if you find a time machine and want to attend some rave in a downpour in 1995!
  12. Are you saying that there's something wrong with being stuck in the past ? Shurley shom mishtake occifer ?
  13. Have you tried dropping it on the floor?
  14. wedge_cadman

    wedge_cadman War Hero Reviewer Book Reviewer

    Certainly true about the wash powder, though in the Leeds uni study they found the best reproofer was actually concentrated comfort conditioner. It works out at 6p a wash as opposed to £3.33 using a tech product