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Thread: Synthetics vs. good old fashion wool

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    Default Synthetics vs. good old fashion wool

    I'm just kind of curious what you guys prefer for cold weather. My experience is mostly from hunting. I've done the thinsulates and gore Tex stuff but I alway seemed to get chilled and cold. Let's face it sooner or later you are going to sweat and that's when I seemed to get cold. Shortly after. A few years back I was in the market for some new cold weather hunting stuff. I was looking at the high dollar stuff with the latest and greatest warm making material. Then I found a set of Columbia wool camo hunting pants and a button down shirt jacket. They had a deal going on that I could get a coat also. I got all 3 pieces for the price of pretty much the coat of the other high dollar stuff. I figured I'd give it a try. I gotta say I LOVED the stuff and still have it. I will admit my experience with a lot of this new stuff is limited and the wool is heavy and not water proof( resistant) but I stay wRmer than I did with the other stuff I had. Maybe it's all in my head , I don't know. So, what do you guys use and prefer?


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    Senior Member natertot's Avatar
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    I tend to like wool, It has the ability to keep you warm even when wet. That is probably why you would still feel warm after sweating.
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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    I tend to like the tried and true wool offering, as well......But I'm an old guy......wool was the new thing back then....upgrade from raw hides.
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    Senior Member MrFixIt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hunter63 View Post
    I tend to like the tried and true wool offering, as well......But I'm an old guy......wool was the new thing back then....upgrade from raw hides.
    So you were there when the wheel was invented?

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    Yeah....then we figured out that you had to stick around to harvest the grain and hops to make beer.......Voilà...cultivation was born.......and when the wheel was invented....was just a matter of time till NASCAR followed.....

    Rednecks and Beer..........
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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    It really depends on the application. I have a newer wool base layer that doesn't itch like pure wool. I love SmartWool socks but I also like capilene and fleece a lot. I'm not real strong on polypro because it can stink pretty quickly. I like Goretex, too. I have wool blankets in the vehicles and at home for emergencies.

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    Woodsman Adventure Wolf's Avatar
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    Personally I like wool. I don't see the synthetic stuff as authentic.

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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    Authentic? Just wait until blood takes about a week and a half to make it to your fingers and toes. Then let's talk about authentic.

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    Woodsman Adventure Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick View Post
    Authentic? Just wait until blood takes about a week and a half to make it to your fingers and toes. Then let's talk about authentic.
    Wait til you get your synthetic fibers to close to a fire, then you'll be wishing for my authenticity.

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    Senior Member hunter63's Avatar
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    I have all sorts of different kinda of clothes, coats, LJ, boots, gloves hats....and I guess I am not gonna believe that one thing is better than others every time and every application.

    So I will say I prefer the wool in many applications.

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    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    Depends (the situation, not the undergarment). When I did a lot of snow skiing I liked the synthetics. They were lightweight, wicked away water fairly well and allowed the freedom of movement that I needed. I like the wool and wool blends too for what they do. In cold weather (not all that frequent anymore) I usually am wearing a combination of synthetics and wool.
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    Not a Mod finallyME's Avatar
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    I like wool for snow. I can stand next to a fire with it. And, it just feels warmer. It is also less clammy. For summer and winter hiking, wool socks. For skiing, synthetic.
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    Senior Member randyt's Avatar
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    wool for extended living arrangement, synthetics for weekends.
    so the definition of a criminal is someone who breaks the law and you want me to believe that somehow more laws make less criminals?

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    Wilderness Traveller Brooks Range's Avatar
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    Depends on the usage. For insulation, like a jacket, in cold, damp/wet weather I much prefer synthetic fleece in most situations. It's lighter, soaks up less water, and you can "whip" most of the water out of it quite easily, put it on and be quite comfortable. It does require some type of wind-blocker, either built in or as a shell.

    I like wool /synthetic blend socks, like Darn Tough and Smartwool.

    Top quality wool pants are really hard to beat and resist wind much better than many standard synthetics. But for extreme cold insulation, synthetic fleece pants worn under a wind shell work well.

    It's really hard to beat a Smartwool baselayer which I think is more comfortable over a wider temp range than synthetics. But for cold weather, good synthetics like Capilene are also out standing.

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    I like things with the synthetic berber fleece in them for liners. I can go most of the winter with a sweatshirt lined with that stuff (and, you know, pants, and boots and gloves too...)

    Wool, even the merino and Smartwool stuff, is itchy to me. Can't wear it as a base layer but love it as a secondary, usually over cotton. I have some cheapy wool blanket things in the truck and a really nice wool point blanket for my bed.

    Spun fleece stuff is to staticky.
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    Junior Member Tokwan's Avatar
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    wool....but don't get them wet.
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    Super Moderater RangerXanatos's Avatar
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    I love wool. I have 3 italian wool blankets and one from harbour freight. A couple of wool 'undershirts' and wool socks (even the no-show ankle socks). One military wool jacket and another jacket 20% wool. And I want more!
    I have one fleece hoody and sleeping bag and like them both.
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    Woodsman Adventure Wolf's Avatar
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    Outside of camping and survival, my favorite street clothes are made out of leather lined with wool. I have this awesome bomber jacket.
    Last edited by Adventure Wolf; 11-27-2014 at 03:01 AM.

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    Genuine sueded leather outside with wool shearling fleece inside works well (very cheap at thrift store). It is still fairly warm when wet compared to most synthetics or down and leather resists some rain but best to use poncho or rain jacket. Tanning your own is PITA but can be rewarding most hunters and some small farmers throw out hides. Ask them to freeze for you, call and drive over fast to pickup. Just a simple shoulder cover or blanket will convince you of its value.
    Edit. Save the brains for tanning, not just for Zombies.
    Last edited by TXyakr; 11-28-2014 at 11:02 AM. Reason: frozen brains

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    Senior Member Highhawk1948's Avatar
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    I like wool over goose down vests.
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