Gail, et al:
Herewith is my Initial Report on the Coldpruf Eco-Terra base layer.
The HTML file is available via this link http://snipurl.com/261yquf
for your review and comment. The text version is included below for your review as well.
Thanks, in advance for your comments / suggestions. Ryan
ECO-TERRA Base Layer
January 5, 2013
Name: Ryan L. Christensen
Height: 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)
Weight: 235 lb (107 kg)
City, State, Country: Idaho Falls, Idaho, USA
I began backpacking at twelve, continuing until 25. After an extended hiatus, due in part to a bad back, I resumed cycling, hiking, and backpacking several years ago. I also began snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. I share my love for backpacking and these sports with my children. I am a midweight backpacker, but carry a full array of necessary gear.
The information below came from COLDPRUF's website and ECO-TERRA product packaging.
ECO-TERRA Base Layers
Manufacturer: COLDPRUF Base Layer
Manufacturer website: http://www.coldpruf.com
Place of Manufacture: Mexico (from U.S. components)
Year Manufactured: 2012
Materials: 70% Recycled Performance Polyesters, 30% Merino Wool
Sizes Availabel: Small, Medium, Large, XL, 2XL, 3XL (in both regular and tall)
Tall Tops: 2 in (5 cm) longer and 1.5 in (3.8 cm) longer sleeves
Tall Bottoms: 3 in (7.6 cm) longer
Colors Availabel: single color
MSRP: Top: N/A
Tester's Actual Measurements
Weight: 2XL Top: 11.3 oz (320 g)
2XL Bottom: 10 oz (284 g)
The ECO-TERRA is a polyester/wool blend midweight performance base layer. The ECO-TERRA, only availabel in men's sizes, is one of two products which comprise the ECO line. Using Thermachoice®, COLDPRUF's simple color-coding system that combines temperature rating and activity level, the ECO-TERRA is classified for use in Cold to Extreme Cold conditions and Low to High Activity levels. COLDPRUF ECO utilizes polyester staple fiber produced from recycled waste PET bottles (such as those used for soft drinks). This recycled polyester fiber is blended with merino wool for use in the ECO-TERRA. However, the percentage of merino wool is somewhat low to help minimize the risk of overheating. During the manufacturing process, the ECO-TERRA fabric is treated with Microban® antimicrobial to help prevent the growth of odor-causing bacteria.
Both the top and bottom are single-layer raschel knit fabric which resembles hand-crocheted fabric and lace. Raschel knit is a form of warp knitting (multiple parallel yarns looped vertically at the same time to form parallel ridges running lengthwise through the material). Warp knit fabric is claimed to have greater dimensional stability, sag less, and ravel less easily than weft knit (single yarn used to form horizontal rows of looped stitches) materials. The fabric is somewhat stretchy. It will be interesting to see how well this material holds it shape and stays in place.
The top has what I consider to be a narrow-collared crew neck (0.5 in or 1.3 cm). It has flat, overlocked seams extending from the crew neck across the top of the shoulder, where the sleeve meets the shoulder, along the underside of each sleeve, down both sides of the torso, and along the hem. The sleeves (from shoulder seam to end of cuff) are approximately 25 in (64 cm) in length. The ribbed cuffs are approximately 2.75 in (7 cm) in length. The tail of the top extends 2.5 in (6.4 cm) longer than the front; with the overall length (collar to bottom of tail) being approximately 32 in (81 cm). There is no tag inside the shirt. Rather, there is a silk-screened label inside, on the back, near the collar. The label includes the COLDPRUF ECO logo, material, size, and laundering information.
Like the top, the bottom has flat, overlocked seams. These seams form the fly and the gusseted crotch, run down the inside of each leg, and around both of the ribbed cuffs. The bottom has an elastic waistband, which is approximately 1.25 in (3.2 cm) in width. There is a silk-screened label inside, on the back, near the waistband. The label includes the COLDPRUF ECO logo, material, size, and laundering information. From the top of the waistband to the bottom of the ribbed cuff, they are approximately 43 in (109 cm) in length. The ribbed cuffs are approximately 2.5 in (6.4 cm) in length.
COLDPRUF® Base Layer manufacturers nine product lines:
AUTHENTIC WOOL PLUS
Each of COLDPRUF's product lines is intended for use in specific temperature ranges and activity levels.
CARE INSTRUCTIONS: (same for top and bottom)
Machine wash warm, with like colors
Use only non-chlorine bleach when needed
DO NOT use fabric softener (sheet or liquid)
Use of fabric softeners will impede antimicrobial properties
Tumble dry low, remove promptly
Low iron if needed
The first thing that caught my attention was the feel of the fabric. The polyester/merino wool blend fabric is soft to the touch, not scratchy like some wool fabric base layers. I like the lace-like raschel knit and am anxious to see how well it breathes. The single-layer fabric is relatively thin; it feels more like a midweight base layer than some of my other midweights. Although neither mentioned on the packaging nor the COLDPRUF website, I am anxious to see how these base layer products wick moisture.
Initially I received only the 2XL top as requested, but no bottom. The Test Director contacted the manufacturer and I received a 2XL bottom a week or so later. However, based on my 38 in (97 cm) waist and COLDPRUF's size chart which lists their Large bottoms being for men with 36 - 38 in (91 - 97 cm) waists, I had requested a Large bottom. Once again, the Test Director contacted the manufacturer. After the Christmas holiday, I received the Large bottom. After removing the top and bottom base layer items from their packaging, I proceeded to thoroughly examine them for any noticeable flaws. These base layer products appear to be constructed of high quality material and workmanship. I did not find any loose seams or other noticeable defects in materials or workmanship.
Next, I donned the top to check sizing. The sleeves were long enough and fit nicely the entire length. The ribbed cuffs were snug, but not overly so. The top was not too tight through the chest/shoulder area. And, the tail length appears to be sufficient to keep it from riding up. The fit and feel of the fabric next to my skin was quite comfortable. I really like the fact that the top does not have any tags in it.
Next, I donned the Large bottom. Although COLDPRUF's website states "TRUE SIZING FOR ACCURATE FIT" related to its sizing as indicated by the line drawn to the thigh area (as shown in the photos at the top of this report), much to my chagrin, the bottoms did not fit me. The Large was so tight in the calves, but especially in the thighs, that I could not pull the bottom up fully. I was disheartened to have followed the manufacturer's suggested sizing only to have the bottom be too small for me in the thighs. I do not consider myself as having overly large calves or thighs. Nevertheless, I took the Large bottom off, opened the 2XL bottom, and donned it. The 2XL bottom fit nicely in the legs, and overall length. The ribbed cuffs were snug, but not overly so. However, for me, the 2XL bottom is quite oversized in the waist. The COLDPRUF sizing chart lists the 2XL bottom for men with 44 - 46 in (112 - 117 cm) waists--some 8 in (20 cm) larger than my waist. The
waistband is stretchable enough that I believe the 2XL bottom will work for the test series. Although I would think an XL bottom would be a better overall fit for me. The feel of the fabric next to me skin was quite comfortable. I really like that the bottom does not have any tags in it.
made from recycled PET bottles
comfortable next to my skin
Men's Size Chart -- bottoms not true to my personal size
This concludes my Initial Report on the COLDPRUF ECO-TERRA base layer. Please check back in two months for my test results. Thanks to COLDPRUF and BackpackGearTest.org for allowing me to participate in this test series.
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