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I've spent a year in my Filson Tin Pants... Here's my take

Discussion in 'Gear Reviews' started by crwoody, Nov 17, 2018.

  1. crwoody

    crwoody Loaded Pockets

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    When I look up reviews for the Filson Tin Cloth pants on Youtube or elsewhere, I'm often frustrated at how uninformative they are, no offense to the reviewers. Either they are against them from the start, saying they're overpriced and nothing special, or they act like they're the only pants any person with a brain would buy. I feel like neither of these are true. After purchasing my own one year ago, and putting them through camping trips, house chores, shoveling driveways in 10 degrees, and working on outdoor projects in 90 degrees, I feel like I can safely say that I have a pretty good idea of their pros and cons.

    The pair I bought is the Single Tin Pants. They also manufacture a double, which come reinforced at the knees and back, and feature a button fly as opposed to the standard brass zipper. My thought was that if I found myself tearing straight through one layer of tin fabric, I'd just order the doubles next time. I bought mine on sale for about $160 plus tax and shipping. They arrived just as ordered, with the pants and a complimentary can of Filson wax. They arrive with no hems, because you're supposed to cut them to length. However, if you'd like real rolled hems, you can order them for a $10 fee.

    I'm assuming if you're reading this review, you might already know what Tin Cloth is, but in case you've just heard about it for the first time, it's Filson's proprietary waxed 15oz canvas. Essentially, it's like an oiled up, tightly woven duck fabric. The wax is (to my research) made of linseed oil and paraffin, but either way, it's supposed to act like old sailcloth and keep your legs dry from wet underbrush and during light rain.

    I'm going to keep this brief, as my phone recently broke, and I can't show pictures of my particular pair. If you'd like to see pictures, just let me know.

    Pros:

    1. The Tin cloth is surprisingly effective. Initially, I was expecting it to be somewhat waterproof, but I've found that it really does a spectacular job at keeping your legs dry. I haven't re-applied the wax in the year that I've owned them, and they still provide an effective barrier against cold, wet weather. Obviously, there are better ways to keep your legs dry, but the waxed canvas does do it's job.

    2. The Tin Cloth is very durable, and the pants are made well. There is no doubting the quality of the Tin Cloth pants, as there shouldn't be for pants which cost more than twice the price of Duluth Fire Hose pants. Stitching is excellent, fit is nice and comfortably relaxed, running a little large. They're made in the USA, with fabric made in Scotland. This fabric can really take quite a licking, and even though i'm not constantly on my knees or wearing them every day, there are no places that are about to rip through to my knowledge. The pockets are nice and big, the belt loops are a great design, and the little appendix pocket is a great place to keep your loose change.

    3. Filson does stand by it's products. I have never sent my pants in for any repair, but the Filson customer service is considered legendary. You can read their guarantee here.

    Cons:

    1. Filson products are overpriced. Unfortunately, as with so many "heritage" brands, Filson has jacked up it's prices so high, few of the men who could use them are willing to pay for them. The current cost for the Single Tin Pants as of this writing is $195, and the doubles are $215. That speaks for itself.

    2. The wax takes some real getting used to. When you first get them, the wax will find its way onto your hands, legs, and furniture. I'd recommend not sitting in any hard-to-clean chairs for a while, until the excess oil has rubbed away from your seat. Also, this wax makes the pants unable to be machine washed, so you'll have to spot clean them with hot water and a brush. Simply put, don't wear your Tin Cloth pants on date night, unless you know your partner very intimately.

    If I were asked whether or not I would buy the pants again, I would honestly say yes. However, if I were asked to recommend these as the best work pants, I would say no. The Tin Cloth pants are a luxury, not a necessity. If I needed one pair of true work pants, I'd go for a $50 pair of Carhartts any day before I'd shell out the money on these again. Filson pants hold up well, they do their job flawlessly, but they are simply too expensive to be something practical.

    I would highly suggest, if you're dead-set on buying Tin Cloth pants and you're willing to pay the price, get them. You'll love them. But if you're a person who is on the fence, I'd imagine that you'd be disappointed. All that being said, the Filson Tin Cloth pants are a really great pair of outdoor work trousers, and if you're willing to spend the cash, I think they'll be a worthy piece of gear for years to come.

    EDIT: In no way is this review a paid promotion. I purchased these pants myself, and am not being paid to write this review. My opinion is my opinion. Thank you.
     
    #1 crwoody, Nov 17, 2018
    Last edited: Nov 18, 2018
  2. twoisone
    • In Omnia Paratus

    twoisone EDC Junkie!!!

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    Good honest review. I appreciate your efforts.
     
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  3. Tesla

    Tesla Loaded Pockets

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    Dovetails with my own personal experience with Filson products. I had a pair of their tin cloth shorts (which, unfortunately, I outgrew) and still have one of their ballcaps. Well made old-world quality products. That said, I mostly use Carhartt products (or Wall) these days.
     
    crwoody likes this.
  4. neo71665

    neo71665 Loaded Pockets

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    I had a pair I found on a goodwill rack with the tags on them years ago (teen). Personally I did like them for winter wear but aint no way I would ever pay what filson asks. Where I'm at the heat and humidity you couldn't wear them during late spring, summer, or early fall unless you wanted to sweat off every bit of water weight you were carrying.

    They are what got me into looking at making oil cloth and treating my carhartts with it. You can buy the materials to make tons of oil cloth for around $20.
     
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  5. konipre

    konipre Empty Pockets

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    Great to get a review of long term use. I keep thinking on buying them, but sort of like you mentioned, Duluth Fire Hose pants with Scotch Guard reapplied every couple years has filled the role for me for a less (and I like the stretch versions).
     
    crwoody likes this.
  6. WillAdams

    WillAdams Loaded Pockets

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    I've always regretted not buying their tin cloth dress/hunting jacket --- currently wearing a safari jacket from historical emporium, which while quite nice, isn't as durable or hard-wearing as I'd like for it to be.
     
    crwoody likes this.
  7. Wishoot

    Wishoot Loaded Pockets

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    Great review thanks!

    I'm one of those with a "Buy Once, Cry Once" mentality and FIlson is my go-to regardless of the price. They're stuff is darn near bomb-proof.
     
    crwoody likes this.
  8. McNasty

    McNasty Loaded Pockets

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    1. Filson products are overpriced. Unfortunately, as with so many "heritage" brands, Filson has jacked up it's prices so high, few of the men who could use them are willing to pay for them. The current cost for the Single Tin Pants as of this writing is $195, and the doubles are $215. That speaks for itself.


    everyone wants made in the USA until they see the price.
     
    thegrouch314 likes this.
  9. mike3145

    mike3145 Loaded Pockets

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    Me thinks there's a bit more to the price than just the American labor, unless garment workers are making $100k a year.

    Why do I want to say that someone few years ago did an analysis of the cost of an iPhone and making them with American labor would add something some like $38 to manufacturing cost. It was the cost of the building the factory to make them in that was the real killer.
     
  10. karlito
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    karlito Loaded Pockets

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    I only wear waxed or oiled clothing as outerwear due to the laundering issue. How do you clean to interior of your pants in which sweat, grime, bacteria, etc get into?
     
  11. crwoody

    crwoody Loaded Pockets

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    Very good question. My answer would be to wear long underwear.


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