Jan 5, 2007 at 11:34 pm #1221080
I wanted to point everyone to Loki USA if you haven't already seen them. They're a startup that's been around for a little while but it looks like most of their expanding product line is quite new. Very innovative stuff. I'm not sure what the weights are like on their soft shells but I could see them being extremely useful for us backpackers.
I just got my MIDI microfleece hoody and I've got nothing but praise for it. The thing weighs about 10 oz in my size small, which is about the same that I might expect for a powerstretch zip-T. The microfleece stretches just a tad so the freedom of motion is pretty good, but that's just the beginning. That 10 oz also incorporates warm convertible mits AND a full microfleece balaclava. For me, this ingenuity and the simplicity it provides is almost enough by itself to warrant its place in my pack. But oh yeah, it's pretty warm and pretty light too. Give it a look see.Jan 6, 2007 at 4:22 am #1373223
Can you explain how the mits work? I'm not jiving! Looks like a really neat product but the cold medicine I'm on is not allowing me to comprehendo. :-)
SteveJan 6, 2007 at 11:18 pm #1373347
I can try to explain, although this kind of thing is difficult to do without a visual aid.
The gist of it is this: on the end of the sleeve–I believe on the side nearest the body–there is what appears to be an extra layer of microfleece. It's a patch, a square that's roughly the size of your hand (go figure). This square is sewn to the underlying sleeve all the way around, except at the "top" end–that is, the edge of the square that is furthest away from your fingertips.
So the deployment of the mitt is quite simple, elegant even. On this detached edge of the square there's a little webbing pull-tab. You simply pull the tab toward the cuff of the sleeve, and end up inverting the square _over_ the cuff entirely, turning the whole mess inside out, and also exposing a grippy band of leather on what is now the palm of the mitt. I'm very happy with the whole thing. With a half dozen tries the conversion becomes effortless and quick. In dry weather I probably won't be bringing separate gloves anymore.Jan 7, 2007 at 3:21 am #1373351
Thank you for the description. I think I have it figured out. Seems like a very versatile piece. Might have to give one a try.
SteveJan 8, 2007 at 7:36 am #1373508
Okay, Ian, that's a pretty slick find you made. I may just have to spring for one of those. I've been looking at getting a fleece hoody for a while, and that one looks heck-a slick for the price.
Oh, and I included a link to their features page which includes videos of the loki-mitt and face shield… very cool.
FYI – It'll probably either be the loki or a R1 Hoody that I wind up getting.Jan 11, 2007 at 7:07 pm #1374024
Just had a chance to try out my new MIDI on the Outer Mountain Loop at Big Bend in the past few days. Nothing too surprising about the performance of the piece, it's microfleece and I got my primary torso insulation by layering a high-loft jacket on top of it for the nights. But the integrated clava is quite warm and the mitts do well as well. Both of the above are a little tight for my liking but they worked.
I'm thinking about contacting Loki and seeing if they might produce this design in a base layer fabric like PowerDry or Merino. If they did such a thing, well . . . there might just be a stampede in the ultralight community . . .Mar 31, 2008 at 9:40 pm #1426475
Just noticed this old thread. Looks like a great piece. Did you ever contact Loki about a powerdry or merino version of the Midi?Apr 2, 2008 at 4:53 pm #1426797
Uhh . . . actually I don't think I did. Good reminder, I may get on that.Apr 3, 2008 at 9:02 am #1426895
"Uhh . . . actually I don't think I did. Good reminder, I may get on that."
Please do… I'd be excited to see the results…Apr 3, 2008 at 9:14 am #1426899
@thomdarrahLocale: Southern Oregon
For winter use as a base layer I like WildThings "Power Stretch Hoody". I'm sure that there is lighter, this hoody weighs 10 oz., but it is very warm, dries fast, has a very nice hood and thumb loops. It is also very well made.Apr 3, 2008 at 2:10 pm #1426956
Josh, here's Loki's reply–it only took them a couple of hours to get back to me.
Thank you for your e-mail and product recommendation. We consider many different product ideas every year and look to release products that have a strong market demand. Your e-mail suggests a product that has been previously considered by Loki and encourages further development of the idea. I will make sure that our product development team is aware of your interest in the described product style. Thanks for your insights and your support of Loki.
Mildly encouraging, at least. Though I won't hold my breath.Apr 3, 2008 at 9:27 pm #1427024
Nice responsiveness from them. I think their design innovations look great, but their fabric choices don't inspire me to whip out the credit card.
I think when companies introduce proprietary or otherwise unfamiliar fabrics, they should provide exhaustive fact sheets so that consumers can make informed comparisons with products we've used before. But I guess reader reviews fill in the gaps pretty well. Thanks.
I live overseas, so I can't afford to order a product without being nearly certain it will suit.Apr 3, 2008 at 11:56 pm #1427053
If you notice the weights on their pieces, you'll quickly figure out that they're not exactly tailored to the well-educated ultralighter. By the same stroke, my guess is their target audience wouldn't care much for an exhaustive fact sheet.
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