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FR - Buff Cyclone - Sam Stamey

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  • samstamey
    Here is my field report for the Buff Cyclone and the web page has been uploaded to http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/FR%20-%20Buff%
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 2, 2009
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      Here is my field report for the Buff Cyclone and the web page has
      been uploaded to
      http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/FR%20-%20Buff%
      20Cyclone%20-%20Sam%20Stamey/

      Looking forward to your edits.
      Sam


      BUFF HEADGEAR
      TEST SERIES BY SAM STAMEY
      Field Report
      January 02, 2009

      TESTER INFORMATION

      NAME: Sam Stamey
      EMAIL: samstamey at yahoo dot com
      AGE: 42
      LOCATION: Santa Rosa, CA
      GENDER: Male
      HEIGHT: 6' 0" (1.83 m)
      WEIGHT: 170 lb (77.00 kg)

      Backpacking background: I started backpacking two years ago with my
      wife and two children (ages 8 and 10 at the time). We have been car
      camping for 20+ years.
      Most of our backpacking has been three season camping in the Sierras,
      6000 -12,000 ft (1800 m - 3658 m) and on the Northern California
      Coast.
      We mostly do a combination of car camping and backpacking.
      Our family recently switched from one 4 person tent to using two 2
      person tents. I usually carry most of the weight and my internal
      frame pack weighs between 40-50 lb (18-22 kg).



      INITIAL REPORT

      PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

      Manufacturer: Buff Headgear
      Year of Manufacture: 2008
      Manufacturer's Website: http://www.buffwear.com/
      MSRP: US 37.00
      Listed Weight: 2.9 oz (82 g)
      Measured Weight: 2.9 oz (82 g)
      Listed Dimensions: 20.7" x 9.8 in (52.6 x 24.9 cm)
      Measured Dimensions: 20.7" x 9.8 in (52.6 x 24.9 cm)
      Other details:
      100% Polyester Microfiber plus Windstopper® membrane


      INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

      The Buff Cyclone came wrapped around a piece of cardboard with a
      picture of a face on the front and the details of the product on the
      back. The idea of the packaging is to hang it on a store display with
      the Buff wrapped around the "face" to show how it would be worn. I
      thought that it was clever packaging to let the potential buyer know
      how the product can be used.

      The Buff Cyclone that was sent to me to test is black on the lower
      half and black and gray checks on the top section. It is listed as
      Chrono/Black on the Buff website.
      <<IMAGE GOES HERE. ALT TEXT = "outside" IMAGE CAPTION = "Outside">>

      The bottom 9 inches (23 cm) are made out of soft stretchable material
      with the Windstopper material built into the fabric. Most of the
      circumference is made from smooth stretchy Windstopper material with
      5 inches (13 cm) of it made with as soft Polartec material. That same
      material makes up a 1 inch band on the bottom of the Buff.
      <<IMAGE GOES HERE. ALT TEXT = "package" IMAGE CAPTION = "Image from
      Buff website">>

      There are seams where the top and bottom connect (standing seam),
      where the smooth material connects to the Polartec (flat seam), and
      where the Polartec band is sewn to the rest of the Buff (standing
      seam). There are two tags sewn on the outside of the bottom of the
      Buff. One has the Buff logo and the other has the Windstopper logo.
      <<IMAGE GOES HERE. ALT TEXT = "closeup" IMAGE CAPTION = "Seams and
      tag">>

      The inside of the bottom of the Buff is soft and fuzzy all around.
      Except for the standing seams it is virtually smooth
      <<IMAGE GOES HERE. ALT TEXT = "inside" IMAGE CAPTION = "Inside
      showing seams and Polartec">>

      The top 12 inches (30 cm) is a double layer of Original Buff fabric
      and is seam free except where it attaches to the bottom section.

      The inside of top of the Buff is seam free, and because it is a
      double layer, it looks like the outside of the top half of the Buff.

      My initial impression is that the Buff Cyclone is well constructed
      and that the company takes pride in their workmanship and their
      product.


      READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

      The instructions on the package are minimal. The product is self
      explanatory. Buff has video instructions on the website that show the
      multiple ways to wear a Buff and are very useful.
      <<IMAGE GOES HERE. ALT TEXT = "instruc" IMAGE CAPTION = "Back of
      package">>

      TRYING IT OUT

      The first time I put the Cyclone buff on I was surprised how much it
      could stretch over my head and still return to the original size. The
      fabric is stretchy enough to pull over my head and still be snug
      enough around my neck to keep drafts out but not too snug that I feel
      as though I am choking.
      I watched the instructional videos on the Buff website and was
      surprised how easy it is to change the product from a one piece
      scarf, to a scarf-head warmer combo, to a balaclava, to a mask, to as
      beanie.
      The product is very soft against my skin and I did not notice the
      seams at all. It is very comfortable in all of the variations that I
      tried. My first time trying the product on was in the house and I
      noticed right away how warm it kept my head and neck.


      TESTING STRATEGY

      Weight and size - Is the product as light as claimed. Size and pack
      ability are important for these types of accessories.

      Wind resistance - How well does it cut the wind on chilly fall and
      winter days while I am hiking? Is it effective to cut the coastal
      wind which is often wet?

      Water resistance - How well does it repel water during foggy days or
      during winter sports such as skiing or snowshoeing? Does the
      Windstopper material completely protect my head from rain? Is the
      Cyclone less breathable because of the added Windstopper material?

      Wicking - How well does it wick away moisture from my head and face?

      Durability - How does the product hold up for two months, six months,
      and more while hiking and backpacking? Can it handle everyday use for
      extended periods of time?

      Cleaning - How does the Cyclone Buff hold up after washings? Does it
      shrink, pill-up, or fade?

      Resistance to stains and odors - Do body odors get trapped in the
      product? How about water and sweat stains?

      Versatility - One of the exciting things about this product is the
      different ways that I could use it to keep warm and block wind. Can I
      use it in various ways as easily as it looks on the manufactures
      website videos?

      Size - Does it fit me as well as the manufacture claims?


      SUMMARY

      The Cyclone Buff is a very simple product with many uses for keeping
      my head and neck warm and to block wind. It fits my head well and I
      do not have any uncomfortable seams or tags pressing into my head or
      neck. Over the course of the test I hope to use the Cyclone Buff in
      various ways and in as many different weather conditions as possible.

      This concludes my initial report and I will follow up with at field
      report in approximately two months. I would like to thank Buff and
      Backpackgeartest.org for giving me the opportunity to test this
      product.



      <a name="FRPT">FIELD REPORT</a>

      FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

      This field test has been in various locations and conditions
      including Yosemite National Park, my home town of Santa Rosa Ca. and
      the Sonoma Coast on the Pacific Ocean. Weather conditions have been
      as low as 20 F (-6.6 C) and as high as 50 F (10 C). I have worn the
      Buff in the snow, rain, fog, and wind. Various altitudes ranging from
      sea level to 7000 Ft (2134 M).

      PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

      The Buff Cyclone is a heavy duty version of their popular headgear
      and is designed for cold weather. I found that the Cyclone worked
      extremely well for keeping my head and neck protected in cold weather
      conditions. Most of the times in my testing the conditions were cold
      and dry but occasionally I wore the buff in wet conditions.
      In the cold dry environment I used the buff as a neck gaiter, a
      beanie and as a balaclava. It worked very well as neck gaiter and is
      easy to pull up over my ears and nose when it is very cold. I
      converted it into a balaclava when the temperatures dropped and the
      wind came up. The buff is very easy to convert from a neck gaiter to
      a balaclava without taking it off. I had it around my neck, from
      behind my neck and pulled it to the top of my head, pinched some
      material around my neck area and then pulled it over my nose. When I
      got too warm I would pull it back down around my neck.
      Because half of the material on the Cyclone is a lot thicker than the
      original Buff, it is a little harder to convert into a beanie. It can
      be done, it just takes a little more concentration and you end up
      with a thick beanie on your head.
      The benefit of one end thicker than the other is that I can choose if
      I want more warmth around my neck or more warmth around my nose and
      ears. Most of the time I wore the Buff with the thick side down (I
      put my head through the Buff thick side first so that the thick part
      was towards my shoulders and not my neck) that way I could pull the
      thin side up around my ears and nose. The think material blocked the
      wind and cold to some degree. But when the wind was blowing cold or
      the temperature dropped a lot, I would switch the Buff so that the
      thick part was closer to my head and the thin part was closer to my
      shoulders. I would then pull it up to create a very warm and
      windproof balaclava.
      When the weather warmed up it was easy to take the Buff completely
      off and store it in a jacket pocket.
      In wet conditions the Buff worked equally well. The rain of fog
      rolled off the Buff for the most part. When I was finished with the
      Buff a quick shake of it and the water would come right off. The only
      down fall is when I had the buff on as a balaclava and the neck part
      tucked into my jacked collar I would get rain that would run down off
      my head on the outside of the Buff and down into my jacket and
      eventually it would get my back wet. This could be easily fixed if I
      wore a brimmed hat along with the Buff.
      This product works well in weather that is below 50 F(10 C) or in
      really windy conditions otherwise it was too hot and uncomfortable to
      wear.


      SUMMARY

      In summary I found the Buff Cyclone a great product for keeping my
      head and neck warm for this testing period. In cold and windy
      settings it was very handy to have and easy to use. When the weather
      turned warmer it was easy to take off and store in a pocket.

      TESTING STRATEGY

      My continued testing strategy for the Long-Term Report period will be
      more of the testing in similar conditions as the field testing and
      will include answers to my questions below;

      Weight and size - Is the product as light as claimed. Size and pack
      ability are important for these types of accessories.

      Wind resistance - How well does it cut the wind on chilly fall and
      winter days while I am hiking? Is it effective to cut the coastal
      wind which is often wet?

      Water resistance - How well does it repel water during foggy days or
      during winter sports such as skiing or snowshoeing? Does the
      Windstopper material completely protect my head from rain? Is the
      Cyclone less breathable because of the added Windstopper material?

      Wicking - How well does it wick away moisture from my head and face?

      Durability - How does the product hold up for two months, six months,
      and more while hiking and backpacking? Can it handle everyday use for
      extended periods of time?

      Cleaning - How does the Cyclone Buff hold up after washings? Does it
      shrink, pill-up, or fade?

      Resistance to stains and odors - Do body odors get trapped in the
      product? How about water and sweat stains?

      Versatility - One of the exciting things about this product is the
      different ways that I could use it to keep warm and block wind. Can I
      use it in various ways as easily as it looks on the manufactures
      website videos?

      Size - Does it fit me as well as the manufacture claims?




      This report was created with the BGT Report Generator.
      Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.
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