To GORETEX or not to GORETEX?

Discussion in 'New Zealand' started by Night Falcon, Feb 21, 2021.

  1. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Structural Failure

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    Ok, so there are a bunch of breathable waterproof products out there now at various prices. We all know Klim is a popular product and uses the certified Gore-tex fabric and systems (hence the $$$$). I have a Klim Traverse jacket which I've owned for about 7 years and it's never let me down. I also use Alpinestars Gore-tex trousers which have equally never leaked.

    They have both gotten their first ever proper clean on the weekend (hand wash with hose, then a bucket of warm water with detergent) and I was a bit concerned the water proofing might be a bit compromised so began the Gore-tex re-application search.

    Turns out there are some options. Klim recommend ReviveX which is available through Motomox in NZ, although I couldn't get their server to recognise the Manawatu...and neither could they?, so it wouldn't ship the product unless i did the transaction manually.... not sure how to do that anymore :D So off to Torpedo 7 and they have a product call -Nikwax TX.Direct spray on, which I duly bought with a nice discount :-)

    So then I decided to look on the interweb for a video of how to apply it properly, there are heaps, but I also discovered Ryan F9 has a video on Gore-tex which is worth a LOOK

    Anyway as far as to Gore-tex or not goes, I think a lot of people (well me at least) were under the impression it was the go to product for breathable waterproof motorcycle gear, and it may well be, but there are options...
    #1
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  2. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    So far everything I had besides Gortex eventually leaked. Gortex gives lifetime warranty, if it leaks they will pay for replacement.
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  3. LuckyPunk

    LuckyPunk Adventurer

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    I've had great luck with Revit Hydratex, and some other off-brand waterproof membranes. I still think Gore-Tex is the benchmark standard, and is the top dog in waterproof breathability.

    For reviving washed goretex, use both the wash-in and spray-on NikWax. Put the mashing in rinse mode with the TX Direct stuff. Pull it out sopping wet, hang it in the garage, and spray it generously with the nikwax spray while it's wet. Let it hang and drip dry. It'll bead water on the surface once again.
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  4. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Structural Failure

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    That only counts if the other gear also claimed to be DWR. Gore-tex guarantee isn't as simple as that. The garment has to have been properly looked after (whatever that means) and maintained and within a reasonable age for the type of product. Go to them with a leaky adventure jacket riden in all kinds of conditions after 7 years and see how ya get on.
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  5. Plaka

    Plaka Brevis illi vita est

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    i have had bad luck with goretex. it gets dirty and it leaks. never again. that said i was using it in a far more demanding environments than sitting on a motorcycle. i read the comments here on maintaining the stuff and for the trouble I'll just stick with leather.
    #5
  6. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

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    Bought a pair of Klim Traverse (Goretex) pants in the US while there in 2010.
    Great stuff and waterproof for about 6 years until it had too many slides and skids... the identical replacement leaked after 12 months, then leaked like a sieve.
    A mates' pair of Traverse pants also leaked within 12 months of new purchase, not impressed with the Klim/ Goretex stuff anymore.
    Bought a pair of 2.hand Klim Badlands GTX from the Fleamarket here, which hasn't seen any decent rain yet...
    Just because they were new (still had tags) and came at less than 1/2 price...otherwise I wouldn't have bothered.

    Same for my Daytona GTX boots....1.lot of road boots were great, the first lot of Transopen GTX Enduro boots a cracker until they started to leak after ~ 5 years rough going...the new identical replacement leaked the second the box was opened...while the below half-price Forma DryTex ADVboots were waterproof for 5 years, replaced by another Forma, still holding dry while generally falling apart after nearly 6 years.

    A pair of cheapo $70 Aldi hiking-sneakers with some sort of no-name membrane has proven its mettle for the last 4 years though...just starting to leak now that they are falling apart generally.

    Not impressed by the Goretex stuff in general...and couldn't be bothered farting around with warranties, sending stuff back/ forth and arguing with importers/ retailers/ or overseas home-offices.
    Not forking out extra for Goretex nowadays, the results just varied too much to warrant a 100-200% overall premium.
    The current RST ADV-jacket proves the point. (some whatever-name membrane)
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  7. wairau

    wairau get in behind!

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    I splashed for a Klim Badlands suit when we came from Oz in 2014, so it'll be 7 years old soon. Took some time with their sizing chart and a tape measure, took a deep breath and imported from Revzilla and paid the GST when it got to the border.

    I used to bother with the Nikwax and all that jazz. Not now.

    Once or twice a year I take it to bits and give it a hot wash with Persil Sensitive, rinse it again with another hot wash, spin it out and call it done. So far, so good. Dry as a bone. I've read several times that Goretex responds well to time in a dryer.

    But I do agree, there are probably now some copycat fabrics that are just/near as good for better "value for money".

    I'll look harder when the time comes.
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  8. dolomoto

    dolomoto Destroyer of Motorcycles

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    Recently I learned that the DWR can be "reactivated" by a cycle in the dryer:

    • Once dry, tumble dry for a further 20 minutes to reactivate the durable water repellent (DWR) treatment.
    • If a dryer isn't available, iron the garment on a gentle setting.
    • When ironing, protect the garment with a towel or cloth.
    • Don't use steam.
    • You can do this step any time you notice the water repellency needs a boost.
    https://www.gore-tex.com/support/care/outerwear
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  9. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    That's funny because because my Forma Adventure Low leaked after 6mo, and importer refused to warranty. Gaernes Gortex version of Balance 3yo, has been in 30 countries and still going strong no leaks.
    #9
  10. EVLED

    EVLED Bike riding nutter!

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    I've got an old Alpine stars Goretex set that I don't wear anymore and it was no good - seemed to absorb water more than repel. But I have a set of their gloves which are pretty good (although I don't wear them a lot - I prefer thin gloves).

    A mate has several Klim options. Some have been very good but he's had a jacket that was no good.

    I'm scared of spending big money and being disappointed. Currently wearing a set of RST adventure gear (my 2nd set) which I like for the comfort and venting and I pop over a set of Scott overpants and jacket.

    My Forma adv boots are over 8 years old and have only ever let water in over the top or stuff that has migrated from wet trou...

    Going out in the West Coast rain very shortly...
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  11. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    This was after riding through 15-20min thunderstorm on ~6-7mo boots, ymmv
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  12. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

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    Yo, reading through threads like this occasionally (usually before some purchase is due) it shows that the sole consistent item is... inconsistency.
    And has been so for a long time.
    Right across the items (gloves to boots to pants to etc) and right across names and manufacturers, big or small.
    Which proves that the "you get what you pay for" doesn't hold water.
    arghhh, here we go again :-)


    Enjoy the West Coast
    #12
  13. oldbeer

    oldbeer Grandadventurer

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    Enjoyed the F9 video, hadnt watched that.
    My conclusion is that the perfect jacket is like the perfect adv bike. Its always a compromise.

    So I choose not to goretex.

    Ill ride much more in the warmer months so the more usual problem is being too hot. I've got a Sand jacket with more vents than Boris has illegitimate offspring and a mesh jacket.

    Too cold can be addressed by more and betterer layers. Icebreakers for africa.

    Too wet is addressed by (if cold) taking the car or if away on the bike cheapo raincoat over the top of everything else.

    If hot and wet (common in Auckland) get wet, dry off in 10 min rotations.

    I doubt if all of my bike gear added together cost as much as a Klim suit

    But hey, they're still toys really so buy whatever takes your fancy. Nobody elses business but yours!
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  14. Muzz67

    Muzz67 Unadventurous

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    I got hand-me-down jacket, second hand pants, old boots. Seem to work just fine...
    Worst come to worst, cheap yellow pvc over the top works excellent.
    And if (read ' when ') I fall off and rip something, who really cares.
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  15. bwringer

    bwringer Gimpy, Yet Alacritous

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    Bought an expensive pair of Gore-Tex boots. The right boot leaked in the first rain.

    Contacted Gore-Tex. "Contact the retailer".

    Contacted the retailer "Wellllllll, send 'em back and I guess we'll take a look".

    Sent 'em back. Retailer said "Welllllllll, we think they don't leak."

    I said "Notwithstanding your allegedly dry paper towel, the fact remains that the right motorcycle boot leaks when in use on a motorcycle in light rain. The left boot does not leak. I want the boots to be replaced under this famous Gore-Tex warranty I paid all this extra money for."

    "Wellllllllll, you'll have to contact Gore-Tex"

    "I did contact Gore-Tex. They told me to contact you."

    "Welllllllll, I can't just ship out free boots."

    "The boots leak. Where do I get the replacements I was promised in writing?"

    "Welllllllll, you'll have to contact Gore-Tex"

    And so on until I gave up after a few more rounds of finger-pointing and bullshit with no results.

    The boots are pretty great otherwise.

    And when it rains, my right foot still gets wet. I try not to think about it.


    If Gore-Tex works for you, great. As noted above, it's highly variable. But don't pay extra thinking you'll get any sort of meaningful guarantee.

    The product, and things made with it, may or may not be bullshit, but "Guaranteed to keep you dry" is bovine excreta of the lowest order.
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  16. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Structural Failure

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    Plus it's plain wrong to wear flash new gear on a O'le Houuunda :nono
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  17. EVLED

    EVLED Bike riding nutter!

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    In Murch after a bit of rain, lots of wind and a trip over the Maruia Saddle. Got wet around puku area. I'm thinking water ran off my tank bag onto pants and migrated upwards of all things...

    Ride was great though, drying out in a motel room the size of a postage stamp.
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  18. OTRA

    OTRA n00b

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    New tech is great, but long before Gore-Tex, half a century ago, my Barbour jacket and pants have always kept me comfortably dry.

    Never found a pair of Gore-Tex boots that would be comfortable in the Texas heat. It doesn't take long for the socks to be as soaked as on the vid above. So prefer no membrane and then covers if hard rain for a long time.


    #18
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  19. bikemoto

    bikemoto Tyre critic

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    I got schooled on micropore and DWR care 20-ish years ago when I had a jacket leak inside the elbows after just 6 months of road use. The importer washed and revitalised it, but not permanently - I suspect the fabric was split, such was the speed of the leaking.

    A key aspect of care for both micropore waterproof/breathables, and products like polypropylene thermals too, is that dirt and the lumps of brightener etc in normal laundry detergents ruins the beading effect, breaking the surface tension and allowing liquid water to track through the holes. Since the aforementioned episode, I've always had Atsko Sport-Wash on hand, we do at least one wash a week with it. I've revitalised old dead polyprops using it. All our sports gear and other high-tech microfibre fabrics get washed in it, especially my cycling gear (shorts) due to it's anti-allergenic properties. I do 4-5 rides a week, plus any moto rides using cycle shorts, and my nylon dirt bike gear, helmet liners, gloves etc etc so it quickly adds up to a half-load in the machine. And this is why I like layered adventure suits: the waterproof layer stays wrapped up in plastic on the bike out of the dust and sweat (and stops me sweating so much) so it doesn't get ruined and doesn't need so much cleaning.

    One caveat: washing machines eventually get choked up with detergent residue if you don't do the regular detergent-less hot cycles to clean them out, so if you are going to start doing this, hand wash in a cleaned plastic container. Otherwise the Sport-Wash will pull the bad detergent out of your machine and fill your micropore stuff, ruining it. This is why some people swear by "not washing gore-tex"... they're doing it wrong. My current machine 10+ years old has always had sport-wash through it once a week or more, so it stays clean.

    And yeah, the outer DWR coating can be cleaned and re-activated by heat a couple of times before it needs to be re-applied. NikWax and the Atsko products seem to be both recommended and readily available here.

    As for plain old Gore-Tex, well... I don't know if it's been improved in the 40 years it's been on the market, but I was told it was designed for snow conditions: clean (no dust...hmmm?) and big temperature differential inside and out. I've used gore-tex tramping jackets in warmer conditions and it seemed about as breathable and comfortable as the old yellow PVC. Gore-Tex wasn't designed for motorcycling, unlike most of the competing products in moto gear. The "best most breathable"? Seriously not. Ask what the staff say in Macpac, Kathmandu etc. I've got a Macpac eVent running jacket that works way better than anything gore-tex I've ever had. Although it looks like Gore have also released newer different fabrics, too.

    I'll buy gloves and boots with Gore-Tex, partly due to Gore's quality control coupled with the complex shapes and stitching, partly because the breathability is sufficient vs a jacket, and partly because the heavier outer layer protects the membrane better. I had a pair of AlpineStars Web Gore-Tex road boots for 4-5 years, used them for adventuring too, and then the soles wore out about the same time as the uppers and the waterproofing. Going on about the same time for the replacements now and I've just replaced the worn out soles, but the uppers have a year or two left and the waterproofing still works. They are the most waterproof (and longest-lasting waterproofness) boots I've ever had. Several times on our recent lap of the mainland I was wandering around in streams up to mid calf, with dry feet. That's a pretty good test for any boot, let alone 5 year old ones.

    HTH
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  20. cyclopathic

    cyclopathic Long timer

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    What MFG boots? have you tried contacting MFG?

    Gaerne was very good when I contacted them over broken latch, sent me replacement. When you are dealing with warranty take phone out and record it, one video would better thousand words.
    #20