Jan 29, 2014 at 9:36 am #1312604
A fellow backpacker at work just asked me for recommendations for a new Down Parka and it got me thinking about DWR Down vs normal down.
So what are folks thoughts on the subject.
StephenJan 29, 2014 at 11:51 am #2067572
Eric BlumensaadtBPL Member
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
I currently own two untreated down garments:
1. WM Megalite sleeping bag
2. Eddie Bauer Down Sweater
While they are both great garments they have all the problems of "regular" down.
P.S. ALL my future down garments will have a DWR treatment on the down. It just makes a lot of sense. i.e. better loft and less moisture absorption (for less carried weight).Jan 29, 2014 at 12:00 pm #2067576
Jerry AdamsBPL Member
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
Not a lot of long term use experience
It may be that the DWR down is only slightly better. Maybe in dry weather it's less warm for the same weight. It may not last as long as regular downJan 29, 2014 at 12:24 pm #2067585
I apologies for the typo in the heading as was posting on my phone, it will be interesting to see if the likes of WM start using it.Jan 29, 2014 at 2:21 pm #2067641
Steve MartellBPL Member
@steveLocale: Eastern Washington
I'd wait myself–looks like the technology is not there yet and the lifespan of the down (loft) is likely less than regular down.Jan 29, 2014 at 4:12 pm #2067678
I would be mighty annoyed if I had to send a down jacket off to be washed after only a months use.Jan 29, 2014 at 4:26 pm #2067685
@towalyLocale: Smoky Mtns.
I will buy the regular down gear on specials or close-outs.
It has worked perfectly fine for me my whole life, and I have never had any down product fail to do what I needed it to do, in any conditions that I have ever encountered.
So, I feel comfortable using it for the last couple decades of my life, and expecting it to be as good as it has been in the previous decades.
I don't need "special down". Regular down is perfectly good, and doesn't need "fixing".
Last time I checked, the ducks and geese stay warm, and they swim around in the water too.Jan 29, 2014 at 6:12 pm #2067717
I don't really care. I'm going to wash any down piece every year or two and, when I wash it, I'll treat with with a cycle in the washer with NikWax Direct-In DWR treatment to renew the water shedding of the outer shell. So, my down is going to end up with a "temporary DWR" treatment sooner or later, one way or another.
If an item I wanted had treated down that would be fine. If it didn't have treated down, that would be fine, too. DWR doesn't miraculously make fabric waterproof and I seriously doubt that it has a miracle impact on down, either.Jan 29, 2014 at 6:33 pm #2067723
Thanks Gents :-)Jan 29, 2014 at 6:41 pm #2067727
just Justin WhitsonMember
"Last time I checked, the ducks and geese stay warm, and they swim around in the water too."
Quite a bit overly simplistic. Many processors of down wash off a good percentage of the natural oils in the down and feathers. There is some left, but nothing like it is when the ducks and geese are wearing it still.
Course even more importantly the ducks and geeses' bodies are constantly replenishing those natural oils which help to keep the down very water resistant.
What they are trying to do with DWR stuff is almost like replace the natural, nature made semi-durable-WR with a more human made hygienic, less smelly, and longer lasting one. Ever smell low grade and not well processed duck down–people report it's not all that pleasant smelling (some have reported that the cheap Walmart down bag has a noticeable smell for example). Ironically though, in some ways it will perform better as far as moisture goes.
However to better apply the DWR, i think they have to strip off more of the natural oils, which *could* possibly shorten the longevity of same. But some claim the opposite, that say fluorocarbon DWR treatment, makes it last longer. I don't what or who to believe on that one.
Suppose we won't fully know until a number of us have had a bag or quilt with DWR down for some 10 or 15 years minimum.Jan 29, 2014 at 6:45 pm #2067730
just Justin WhitsonMember
Steve, there are different down DWR's, just like there are different garment DWR's. Pagatonia's is a silicone based one. Others are fluorocarbon, and others still are wax based.
Interesting, this follows the different garment DWR's some, except some of the processes of application are different. Patagonia's process of applying the silicone is a super expensive, plasma treatment.
It could be that fluorocarbon treatments have a very different handling than the Patagonia one. Patagonia does stress that their products do need to be specially cleaned and more often, which is why they say they will pay for it.
However, on a long trip, where you can't just send the jacket back, that's a major weakness i think.Jan 29, 2014 at 7:58 pm #2067756Jan 30, 2014 at 6:25 am #2067843
Cheers Rick,Jan 30, 2014 at 4:59 pm #2068063
Alex WallaceBPL Member
@feetfirstLocale: Sierra Nevada North
Interesting approach by Outdoor Research: waterproof the fabric, not the feathers.Jan 30, 2014 at 5:01 pm #2068064
It does work, I have a Crux Lava event shelled waterproof Parka which has been in some nasty downpours and it stayed dry, the key with it is that it has welded seams.Jan 30, 2014 at 5:03 pm #2068065
Justin BakerBPL Member
@justin_bakerLocale: Santa Rosa, CA
The fabric doesn't prevent water vapor (humidity) from getting into the down.
Unless you made the fabric out of cuben or something.Jan 30, 2014 at 5:06 pm #2068066
This only solves the problem of water from the outside, not water from the inside…..Jan 30, 2014 at 5:49 pm #2068089
Very true Doug,
It's not an issue I have ever had with a Parka but could be a big issue with a sleeping bag.Feb 14, 2014 at 5:40 pm #2073636Feb 15, 2014 at 4:04 am #2073723
Woubeir (from Europe)BPL Member
Sure, but is it worth the extra cost ? Sometimes/often, that's high. I remember noticing that something that costed 300 $ suddenly went to 350 $. The only change: DWR-treated down instead of untreated down.Feb 15, 2014 at 4:55 am #2073727Feb 15, 2014 at 5:03 am #2073728
Woubeir (from Europe)BPL Member
Sure, but I speak of price increase directly in the beginning of the appearance of DWR-down. The rising in price for high quality down masks that actually.Feb 15, 2014 at 5:39 am #2073732
I read somewhere that these treatments actually increase the down fill power.
I also read somewhere that it has a distinct wash life where it will wash out, like 8-10.
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