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  1. #1
    Senior Member stokell's Avatar
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    Not so Waterproof Clothing

    If you are like me, you have purchased expensive 'breathable' waterproof clothing and now they are no longer waterproof. I've discovered a product that renews the waterproofing. It's called Nikwax and first you wash the item well and while it is still wet add the waterproofing. Once it is dry, the item is waterproofed again. It seems to work great!

    I was considering replacing my MEC Goretex cycling jacket, but now it is waterproof again!

    Anyone else know of other products like this?

  2. #2
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    One thing a lot of people don't realise about Goretex is that you need to wash it (dirt affects its waterproof properties) and to restore its breathable quality, you need to put it in the tumbledryer, on a low setting.

    This is how I have treated my Goretex sailing gear for many years and it is still going strong.

  3. #3
    totally louche Bekologist's Avatar
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    there's Nikwax, and there's Granger's, which is supposedly more elastic. i believe the gore company endorses Grangers.

    I've always been happy with the Nik. they make many different wash in and spray on fabric treatments for outdoor enthusiasts.
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  4. #4
    My tank takes chocolate. FlowerBlossom's Avatar
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    I just 'proofed my riding jacket with the Nikwax, for the second year in a row. It's great stuff.

    Note that detergent is not good for this family of fabrics. Your everyday laundry soap is detergent. I have used the Nikwax soap (sold separately from the tech-rinse), then, used the tech-rinse to bring back the waterproofness. Nikwax has instructions for front loading washing machines, too.
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    Where do you get this stuff in Toronto?

  6. #6
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    There is a good write-up on this subjet here, scoll down a bit.
    The company used to make very nice clothing.
    http://www.sequel.tm/information/maintaining_gear.html

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    The Nikwax brand of clothing is Paramo which is excellent stuff for colder conditions. Mine comes out in late Oct and I use it until about early May. It is much more breathable than gortex , rainproof to expedition standards and lasts much longer than gortex.

    I have also reproofed gortex to get another few seasons use. Once gortex starts to soak up water rather than bead it gets heavy, stops breathaing and takes ages to dry.

  8. #8
    Senior Member stokell's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Peterpan1
    Where do you get this stuff in Toronto?
    Like most other useful things pertaining to bikes I got them from Mountain Equipment Co-op on King Street West at Peter in Toronto.

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    Thanks Stokel, I was there and picked some up today. I have an old Banff cycling jacket, but I only wear it for touring so it doesn't look bad. I'm going to try cleaning and spraying, and I hope it actually keeps me dry this year. Off for two weeks, if I can get away, so it will be a lot more fun around here come next week! :0)

    Also got a Hennesey. I'm going to carry it with my pocket tent, if I can pack them all.

  10. #10
    Senior Member Lolly Pop's Avatar
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    Michael thanks for mentioning Paramo. You beat me to it. That's where I first heard of Nikwax.

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    OK, so I'm looking over the garment and all the seam tape has lifted off. It's NOS quality so I think the seam tape must have been misapplied which is probably more comon than the reverse. I'm glad I spotted it, because I suspect that after Nikwaxing it I wouldn't have the chance to seal the seams. Now leaving around thurs, so I hope I can find some sealant before I go.

  12. #12
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    I am presently trying to improve the waterproofing of my gore tex with the use of Revivex. As suggested, I am running my gore tex jacket and tights thru the rinse cycle.
    No soap. I looked in the washing machine. It looks like tons of suds. No wonder it interferes with breathability. And waterproofing, so we all say. ?
    Think one double, rinse cycle will get all the soap out? THe Revivex instructions state to only use detergent if the garment is really dirty. IT does not mention what kind of detergent to use.

  13. #13
    Senior Member Lolly Pop's Avatar
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    just don't use liquid detergent! only the powdered stuff for goretex and its ilk.

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    Slightly OT, but down sleeping bags carry the same caveat on detergents. There are specialised, non-sudsing liquids available at outdoor shops (at least in Australia) that are specifically made for down bags. I imagine it has something to do with ensuring the loft on the down remains "lofted" (if you know what I mean), rather than compact through use of laundry detergents.

    I did note the washing instructions on my Australian down bag said to use soap rather than detergent, and I did so on a recent trip to Iowa with no ill effects.

    On-topic, GoreTex apparently doesn't mind a bit of heat treatment. I have watched a hand from a maxi-yacht in the Sydney-Hobart ocean race put four loads or five of GoreTex sailing jackets and trousers through the washers and then quite warm driers.

    I have read that going over the fabric with a warmish steam iron will restore water repellency. Go to this link and select Re: reteflonizing gore.

  15. #15
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    As mentioned in point # 8. I am no where near the Mtn Eqpt. Co-op. Can this soap be found everywhere, like in Europe? If not, does Wool Lite work? I was so surprised when I washed my Gore Tex jacket only on the rinse cycle and the water was soapy.Two rinse cycles , even!

  16. #16
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Have not I read that it is wise to use non detergent soap on Lycra? What, detergent soaps effects Lycra's breathability? As I remember, that special Nike soap is really expensive. Like $10 for a quart. I'd use that expensive soap, on Gore Tex I guess. But on everyday Lycra? What a quart would do like 10 washings?
    What soap do you use on lycra?

  17. #17
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    Nikwax is great stuff. I've been using their products for years for all my motorcycling stuff. There's nothing like riding all day in the rain on a tour for days in a row, but the Nikwax stuff really helps. They've got products for leather, for textiles, for boots/shoes, for gloves, for just about everything.

  18. #18
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saintly Loser
    Nikwax is great stuff. I've been using their products for years for all my motorcycling stuff. There's nothing like riding all day in the rain on a tour for days in a row, but the Nikwax stuff really helps. They've got products for leather, for textiles, for boots/shoes, for gloves, for just about everything.
    Motorcycling stuff uses Goretex?

  19. #19
    Formerly Known as Newbie Juha's Avatar
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    Quite common around here to see Goretex motorcycling clothes. Also laundry detergents with zeolite in them is not good for "technical" garments (Goretex, Drymaxx and such). Zeolite is often used in detergents to replace phosphates, which add to water pollution if not properly cleaned from waste water. Modern waste water handling plants deal with phosphates quite effectively.

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  20. #20
    No longer in Wimbledon... womble's Avatar
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    I've found a Nikwax treated Marmot Driclime is effectively waterproof and vastly more breathable that Goretex (I've gone through three goretex shells).

    Paramo stuff is great, but tends to be a bit tent-like. A company that does custom clothing in Paramo fabric is Cioch Direct, based on the Isle of Skye. Paramo stuff is pretty warm, that's the only real downside and a good reason to look into shelled microfibre like the Marmot instead.

  21. #21
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    I was in two large, sporting goods stores yesterday. I could find no special GOre tex friendly detergents. Clerks gave me no suggestions of products to be found elsewhere.
    QUestion. Does Woolite work on Gore tex.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezealot
    I was in two large, sporting goods stores yesterday. I could find no special GOre tex friendly detergents. Clerks gave me no suggestions of products to be found elsewhere.
    QUestion. Does Woolite work on Gore tex.
    Nikwax Tech-Wash

    Also, from the Marmot website:

    "Wash in Granger’s G-Wash Cleaner Plus—an effective, residue-free cleaner. Typical laundry detergents contain fabric softeners, fragrance and color brighteners which are water-attractive residues—not something you want on the surface of your Gore-Tex fabric. A mild powered detergent, such as “Dreft” is acceptable if thoroughly rinsed. (Absolutely NO “Ivory Snow” or Woolite—they are loaded with wate-attractive residues). "

    Note the NO-GO reference to Woolite.

    In addition, see if the stores you tried have special detergents for down sleeping bags.

  23. #23
    Senior Member cyclezealot's Avatar
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    ANyone here know about EUropean detergent products usuable on GOre TEx. One sales rep at 'Velo and Oxygen' suggested a 'Marseilles." I think it was called.
    My disappointment. All the products listed above were not at any the stores most likely to carry them. The biggest sporting goods store here, 'Decathelon,' did not carry any of them. THe one clerk said 'Marseilles' is not aggressive to GOre TEx. Does he know.I'd prefer Grangers.

  24. #24
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    This what it actually says on their site:

    WASH
    Machine-wash warm (104° F/40° C). Powder or liquid detergent. No fabric softener.

    WATER REPELLENT TREATMENT
    Gore recommends applying a topical water repellency restorative for outdoor fabrics, available at your local outdoor retailer. We do not recommend wash-in treatments.

    Other stuff at:

    http://www.gore-tex.com/webapp/wcs/s...roductId=10087

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclezealot
    Motorcycling stuff uses Goretex?
    \

    Sure. My Aerostich jacket and pants have a Goretex layer. Heavy Cordura nylon on the outside, extra heavy abrasion-resistant stuff at the shoulders, elbows and knees, armor at the same points plus back. It's completely waterproof -- I've ridden whole days in absolutely pouring rain and stayed dry.

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