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Clarity regarding waterproofing and rain

Discussion in 'EDC Bags' started by thepinched, Sep 14, 2013.

  1. thepinched

    thepinched Empty Pockets

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    I have an Osprey Comet I use constantly. Have noticed that with rain/water that it makes it through to the pack. Is there any true waterproof backpacks? or is a rain cover something I should keep handy? any thoughts would be appreciated.
     
  2. Cobra 6 Actual

    Cobra 6 Actual Loaded Pockets

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    My opinion: There's two ways to go with this:

    1) You insert some type of impermeable barrier, such as a Ziplock or a small trash bag, or a commercially produced inner bag.
    OR
    2) You spray your bag with some type of water repellant protector, such as Scotchgard.
     
    Last edited by Cobra 6 Actual, Sep 14, 2013
  3. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    I posted a response to a similar question on my blog which I will republish here...

    Q: Any opinion or insight about the most durable, weather-proof fabric for backpack ? Is it ballistic nylon? 1000d Cordura? Or tough duck cotton canvas used by Archival , Joshu + Vela & Lemolo vs. GORUCK & Tom Bihn which uses Cordura ?

    A: You’re asking two different questions – durability and the ability to repel moisture.

    In terms of durability, Tom Bihn recently provided a good explanation of the technical differences between cordura and ballistic nylon:
    “First, ballistic is a “filament” yard, vs cordura which is texturized. This means ballistic nylon yarns are smooth & slick; cordura yarns are slightly fuzzy, actually discontinuous, more like a natural fiber. This gives cordura somewhat higher abrasion resistance, while the ballistic has higher tear strength. However, in both fabrics the tear strength and the abrasion resistance are so much higher than necessary, the end-user will seldom if ever experience any difference between cordura and ballistic. The other technical difference is that ballistic is two-ply weave, which means two 1050 denier yarns are woven as one. This mostly impacts the look of the fabric, not so much it’s utility, but it pretty much is what people like about ballistic nylon. Aesthetically, cordura has a more natural, cotton-canvas sort of feel; ballistic has decidedly synthetic feel and look, more techy for sure.”

    Canvas is not as abrasion resistant or as lightweight as Cordura or Ballistic Nylon. This is why the Military switched to the later.

    As far as weather resistance goes, none of the fabrics you mention are “water proof”. With the right DWR (Durable Water Repellent) coating, cordura, ballistic nylon, or canvas can withstand some measure of moisture before having it soak through. In other words, they can be “water repellent”. The biggest issue on any pack are the seams and zippers. Without taped seams and water repellent zippers (e.g. YKK Aquaguard) or at least zippers with storm collars, most packs will allow moisture to get through if caught in a steady downpour. If you’re worried about weather, those are the features you need to look for. BTW, most cordura or ballistic nylon fabrics used in packs are backed with Polyurethane coating which provides the DWR I mention. Canvas is NOT water resistant at all unless it’s waxed or coated in some way.
     
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  4. TARFU
    • In Omnia Paratus

    TARFU EDC!!!!! Junkie

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    The only true "water proof" bags are dry bags. Dry bags are often used in kayaking, canoeing, rafting, scuba diving, etc. Like the one that Makahbay posted.
     
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  5. Screehopper

    Screehopper Loaded Pockets

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    Some messenger bags/backpacks geared toward bicyclists have a waterproof liner with cordora shell (more "normal" look). Or a waterproof backpack from Ortlieb (looks like a PVC shell typical of waterproof bags). My buddy had a Arcteryx backpacking pack that was waterproof, but I don't think Arcteryx makes it anymore.

    And then there are the traditional waterproof bags with roll tops.

    I either use my Baileyworks messenger when I know it's going to rain or I use one of my non-waterproof backpacks with a trash compactor bag as a liner. Trash compactor bags are great because they're sized better for a daypack and they're extremely durable unless you really want to use a 40 gallon contractor grade trash bag.
     
  6. Shur
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Shur Loaded Pockets

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  7. thepinched

    thepinched Empty Pockets

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    excellent explanation/advice...esp the cordura vs ballistic nylon. essentially I might look to move to a pack with an integrated rain cover (Osprey Escapist) to simplify things. i have no real need for waterproof i suppose, except when it starts raining and the pack is exposed to constant rain.
     
  8. Myrddraal

    Myrddraal Loaded Pockets

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    That's usually when you need it ;)
     
  9. Blackheart

    Blackheart Loaded Pockets

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    I'm a little fuzzy on what this product does, exactly...

    " It is suitable for use on metal, wood, aluminum, galvanized metal, PVC, concrete, masonry, asphalt, vinyl siding, fiberglass, canvas, most plastics and more."

    I've never considered any of these materials to be porous.

    Also, "Not intended to be applied to electronic devices or clothing." I thought that meant cloth in general, although they say it's suitable for canvas. Wonder if they mean "not intended for cloth worn next to your skin"? Dunno'.
     
  10. Shur
    • In Omnia Paratus

    Shur Loaded Pockets

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    It causes the water to bead up and move away as opposed to just not absorbing it.
    I'm pretty sure it's the same as this stuff:
    The shot of the glass pane with the edges treated is interesting.

    I picked up a pack of NeverWet a few days ago just to try it out on my work boots and anything else I can think of.

    I almost want to paint a room or two to try spraying a paint tray down.
     
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  11. Blackheart

    Blackheart Loaded Pockets

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    Interesting video. Well done, too. Thanks, Shur!

    I can see where guys that have to work with sloppy things (oil, concrete, paint, etc.) regularly might find this stuff to be a godsend.
     
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  12. fresh eddie fresh
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    fresh eddie fresh Loaded Pockets

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    I have a bunch of messenger bags and the good ones will let you stand in the rain for hours with absolutely no penetration. A lot of them will have a "Bag in a bag" made out of truck liner material. You can actually carry water in them and it takes a long while for it to seep out through the seams (people will use them as coolers quite often.)

    The only thing you need to look out for is the corners where the flap meets the bodies... good bag companies will add extra material so water cannot enter through there... others will leave a huge gaping hole there.
     
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