- Oct 28, 2017 at 2:39 pm #3499068
I only did very active trips in the past winters (Alps) where a Primaloft Jacket was enough if I took my Down Vest with me. As I’m doing more photography and overnight stays at the moment and also in the coming winter, I need to get a new down jacket as well for more insulation. Primary reasons are packability, weight and obviously warmth when cooling down on the summit, in the camp, etc.
The primaloft jacket I use as a reference is a Rab Generator Alpine (100g primaloft gold body, 60g in the rest). According to what I found in the forum, this (160g) equals half of it in 800fp down – 80g. This would be something like the Ghost Whisperer or Rab Microlight or Patagonia Down Sweater jackets if I’m correct.
I inferred that I want a medium weight down jacket, in the 500g total weight range, with maybe 150 to 180g down. As I have a Rab Neutrino Endurance for very cold, stationary, photography trips (275g down), this would perfectly fill the gap.
The best fit I found so far is the:
Rab Electron: https://rab.equipment/eu/electron-jacket-30
But I’m unsure if it’s not too warm. Especially when layering, I’ve got a Patagonia Down Sweater Vest as well.
If too warm, I would look for the 400g total weight range like:
Montbell Alpine Lite Parka https://euro.montbell.com/products/disp.php?p_id=2301261
Montane Featherlite Down Jacket https://www.montane.co.uk/mens-c1/clothing-c25/insulation-c6/featherlite-down-jacket-p155
Can anyone maybe share some experience with the fill weights?Oct 29, 2017 at 8:31 pm #3499261
any opinions?Oct 29, 2017 at 10:00 pm #3499263
Opinion>? Yes Just save your money and use the heavier down jacket you already own and unzip it to vent any excess heat if you have that needOct 29, 2017 at 10:03 pm #3499264
That jacket is enormous and cannot be packed for hiking. I’m thinking about selling it. It’s far too warm as well.Oct 30, 2017 at 1:14 am #3499271
Hoosier TBPL Member
While I don’t have a technical opinion based on your primaloft numbers, I do want to ask if you’ve looked at the Montbell Mirage as an option? It has incredible specs for its weight and should pack down quite small.
Edit: just looked and it actually has a smaller pack size than the alpine light but with more down and baffled construction.Oct 30, 2017 at 5:26 am #3499288
Richard ABPL Member
The Rab Alpine Microlight might be worth considering – you can find it for a reasonable price in Europe (a quick search online showed £149 in u.k.) and it seems a close-ish match to your desired specs (having more down than the 80g you suggest above):
Total weight 430g in size L; 750FP European Goose Down; 143g/5oz in size L
Rab’s Continuum Jacket would be warmer still while still being lighter than the Electron, but you’ll probably have to pay more for it…Oct 30, 2017 at 7:22 am #3499289
That jacket is enormous and cannot be packed for hiking. I’m thinking about selling it. It’s far too warm as well.
I would consider it a medium warmth compact jacket and to pack up small enough to fit into a daypack. Obviously our points of view are very different as I usually argue that it is better to be too warm than frozen to death.
If it is an XXL I may be interested in purchasing it even if they are a tad short in the bodyOct 30, 2017 at 3:40 pm #3499324
@edward, it’s possible that mine is an older model of the Neutrino range – I remember there were 3 different weights. Unfortunately it’s not an XXL, only L :)
@richard , I think the Microlight is too cold. It’s rather for 3-season/shoulder use in my opinion. But yes it’s close to what I mentioned, maybe slightly below as it has only 750FP down.
Difficult decision..Oct 30, 2017 at 10:42 pm #3499377
With the following setup:
- Bbaselayer (tshirt)
- middle layer for use when active (e.g. Rab power stretch pull on or even the Rab Alpha Flash jacket)
- down jacket
How much weight of e.g. 800fp down do I need to be comfortable standing around/camp chores up to -10 or -15C?
I do have a Patagonia Down Sweater Vest that I could use for layering, and be more flexible.Oct 31, 2017 at 12:36 am #3499396
I can’t comment on what fill weight exactly but according to the US Armys excellent tables 30 to 35mm of insulation is adequate
Richard Nisley comments that my own active cold weather layering of UL baselayer, Grid fleece top and Patagonia NanoPuff bivvy was thermo-neutral at 0C and that is ~15-20mm of insulation counting the air between layers
This puts you in Nunatak Skaha territory or approximately 7 ounces/ 190 grams of 850FP down but does of course depend on what other layers you are using on the rest of your body, especially your head
Some people don’t like hoods and prefer a hat, I need both a hat and an insulated hoodOct 31, 2017 at 12:39 am #3499398
In conversation with Nunatak the Skaha is about as warm as 6 ounce Primaloft / 5 ounce APEXOct 31, 2017 at 4:20 am #3499421
Richard NisleyBPL Member
@richard295Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
You said, “How much weight of e.g. 800fp down do I need to be comfortable standing around/camp chores up to -10 or -15C?”
~ 8 oz. 800 fillOct 31, 2017 at 7:24 am #3499432
Thanks for sharing your experience, Edward!
Richard, as always this is very helpful for me, thank you!
I’m thinking about layering it, e.g. with a Patagonia Down Sweater Vest or a synthetic jacket (Micro/Nano Puff) that I use in autumn/spring. I assume I can then go down to around 150/160g fill weight.
Have to look at the weights though, but I would prefer a modular setup.Nov 11, 2017 at 5:53 pm #3501637
@ Richard Nisley, one more question:
I’m thinking about layering the down jacket with an active insulation that I carry anyway. Plus I also would use a lightweight rain or wind shell.
As I’m currently experimenting with Polartec Alpha and FullRange compared to fleece, I wondered how this would affect the setup – it’s pretty hard to find actual numbers for those fabrics.
The Alpha Jacket is a Rab Flash Jacket: https://rab.equipment/eu/alpha-flash-jacket
The FullRange is a Patagonia Nano Air Hoody http://eu.patagonia.com/at/en/product/mens-nano-air-hoody/84365.html
Do you have any thoughts on these? Thank you very much!Nov 12, 2017 at 2:53 am #3501720Nov 12, 2017 at 11:30 pm #3501782
@ Richard Nisley, thanks a lot – I only knew the text snippet, not the full document. That’s very interesting.
I understand Alpha is not as good (clo/oz) as FullRange, however, since there are now Alpha naked jackets I assume that this is an improvement to fleece in terms of weight, right?
I read that you need twice as much primaloft one as you need down (800fp). Is there any factor like this for Alpha or FullRange so it is easier to judge how warm a certain piece is depending on the weight of Alpha/FR used?
Thank you very much,
ChristophNov 18, 2017 at 10:18 pm #3502806
Right now I tend towards the Montbell Mirage – apart from the very thin shell it seems like an amazing jacket.
Nov 19, 2017 at 9:29 am #3502876
- This reply was modified 11 months ago by Christoph Blank.
jared hBPL Member
Yes, those numbers exist. RN has an excellent document comparing clo values that he has shared on here before. Someone may be able to post a link to it or the old thread (cannot find it in my bookmarks).
I remember the numbers…mostly. Anyone feel free to correct me, but I think these are fairly close:
Primaloft Gold- .92 (do not remember the several other primalofts, but Gold is the warmest among all synthetics).
FullRange – .56
Alpha – .28-.37 (I think RN gave the .28 number; .37 comes up in a search, but no idea about source credibility. And not sure if different generations/weights are different. Based on using jackets and pants with both types of insulation, Alpha seems closer to the low end, where RN has it, or about 1/2 of fullrange).
Alpha Direct – unfortunately, i have found no data yet. Just got some pants and a balaclava from OR to test out. Very comfortable, quality construction, warm walking around outside, but we will see how they perform this winter.
I have the nano-air hoody and a similar 10oz fleece. Hard to compare those two jackets–so different. Nano air has more wind/water resistance, hood, different fit, more pockets. But decision is easy…would definitely go with the fleece/alpha direct option and wind shirt over the nano-air. Cheaper and more versatile. Even with the nano-air hoody on sale right now for $150, you could look around and find two or three different weight fleece jackets for that much and have even more options. I bought 3 different weight fleece tops for just under that by catching the right sales.Nov 23, 2017 at 12:01 pm #3503638
Armand CBPL Member
With so many options I can only recommend what I have experience with as a layering system
For down I wear the Dynafit Cho Oyu Down Jacket which is 750 fill and weighs 530 grams.
Look around and you can probably score it for under $100. I think it paid $95, marked down from over $300.
It’s well featured and appears comparable to the RAB you linked.Feb 17, 2018 at 5:22 pm #3518902
To update this thread: I finally drove to Grindelwald today (at the foot of the Eiger, the first Montbell store in Europe) and bought the mirage.
I’m very impressed by the unbelievable weight of this extremely warm jacket – warmth to weight wise I guess it cannot get any better. However, I also understand the concerns regarding 7D, it’s really thin.
Thanks again for your input guys!
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