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  • hardshell repair

    This season I got a rip in the seat of my favorite hardshell. I had another hardshell, so I just hung the ripped ones up until I could find a good repair method.

    Anyone feel like they have a good repair method they want to share?... Thanks in advance...
    the fall line is your friend.... resistance is futile

  • #2
    I don't think this is anything special and probably a pretty obvious repair. Several years ago I bought a new pair of Arc Teryx bibs. They were the nicest and most expensive pants I ever bought. In that spring I tripped in a post hole and put a several inch gash in the lower leg with my ski pole. I still cringe thinking about that sound. I spent a few hours sewing them up from the inside as delicately as I could. I then put seam seal over the threads and a gore tex patch on the inside of the pants under the torn part. You can hardly see the repair because it looks like a normal seam and they have worked as good as new for well over a 100 days.


    • #3
      thanks james. Was the gortex patch a "peel and stick" or an "iron on" type of application? My rip is also on a pair of arcteryx sk bibs. The rip is in the seat of the pants, so I want to make a solid repair so my ass doesn't get wet when I wear them.

      I could use some industrial strength contact cement to secure the patch on the inside too, but I wondered what other options are available and also possibly if there's a well known simple solution to secure the patch on the inside.

      James, My buddy gave me identical advise as yours when it happened to me two months ago, btw.
      the fall line is your friend.... resistance is futile


      • #4
        I put a pretty massive L-shaped rip in my jacket last year. Put some coated nylon in behind as backing/support and then sewed it all down. Had some seam sealing tape from another project so it worked out pretty well, I would imagine the liquid seam sealer would work too. No complaints so far, not the most graceful looking thing, probably could have acquired some orange thread but I wanted it done so I could wear the jacket...

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        • #5
          Well my memory is not as good as the repair. I know the patch was made by Gore and I do remember it being sticky but don't remover if I ironed it after I stuck it on.


          • #6
            I have had good luck with self-adhesive repair tape. It is usually available in various fabrics/weights/colors from places like REI. I have not usually ironed it on, but that may be because I was often applying it to puffy jackets and thin ripstop fabric. I have seam sealed the edges on some applications, but not others and have noticed no difference in durability (all repairs have held fine). One tip; trim the patch so that ha rounded edges and no sharp corners. Sharp corners are more likely to come unstuck and cause the patch to come off.


            • #7
              Duct Tape. Comes in colors now, put a layer on the inside, another on the outside. Round the corners of your patch before applying. Run your wax iron over the duct tape (seriously, significant improvement in adherence properties) have had such a repair hold up for two years of 100+ days.


              • #8
                For repair of 3-layer hardshell jackets & pants I've had fantastic results both with Kenyon K-Tape and with McNett's GORE-TEX® Fabric Repair Kit. Most outdoor gear stores carry one or the other; often both. K-Tape is significantly less expensive, a bit lighter and less stiff (nice for repair of light-weight fabrics), and can cover larger gashes. Both are just about equally durable in my experience, though the McNett kit might have a very slight edge there.

                Here's an old K-Tape repair of mine as an example....

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                The green strip of K-Tape covers an L-shaped gash 5" wide by 1" tall. Could've been a death-blow to those pricey shell pants. I made that repair at least 5 years before snapping that photo, and it held up strong until I finally retired the pants yet another couple years later. I added the orange patch the day I snapped the photo and it held up great 'til the end too.

                Some quick tips to achieve bomber repairs with these adhesive repair patches:

                1. Repairs work best on 3-layer hardshell material, so avoid buying hardshells with cheaper 2-layer laminates (anything with a liner inside the outer waterproof/breathable layer is almost certainly a 2-layer laminate), which are much harder to repair.

                2. Clean the material around the wound (sponge with water is sufficient), and dry it thoroughly.

                3. Cut adhesive patches to cover the gash (and ideally extend at least a half-inch beyond it in all directions), then round off all corners of your patches to help keep them from peeling up at the corners.

                4. Apply your patches to BOTH SIDES of the material (inside and out).

                5. Iron the patched area (no steam) to really get the adhesive to activate.

                6. Apply pressure to the patch with your hand while it's still hot, and maintain pressure as it cools down.

                7. If you have no iron handy (what? you don't pack a household iron in your backcountry repair kit?) then CAREFULLY heat the patched area (camp stove, lighter, whatever) and again apply pressure while it's cooling down (sandwich between your hands if you have no good surface to press against).

                For an average rip or tear, the repaired garment will be essentially as good as new.

                BTW, you can follow the same procedure with duct tape in a pinch if you can't get your hands on some K-Tape or similar (the heat and pressure still helps significantly to better set the adhesive) but the end result with duct tape won't be nearly as pliable, as durable, or as long-lasting as with K-Tape or GORE-TEX® Fabric Repair Kit or similar, and when it does fail it'll leave a gooey mess that'll be hard to repair over.

                P.S. I've found some fantastic deals on GearTrade and elsewhere on 3-layer garments that have suffered shipping damage that caused a rip or tear that I was able to completely repair very easily in this way. Great way to score a killer deal on an otherwise new shell garment.
                Last edited by grayson; 27 May 2014, 11:26 PM.


                • #9
                  This is not rocket science. Sew, seam grip, done.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by 3PinGrin
                    This is not rocket science. Sew, seam grip, done.
                    Yeah, I've taken that approach too. It works great as well (even better when you add a backing material). I tend prefer the adhesive patches in most cases, but that's largely personal preference.
                    Last edited by grayson; 27 May 2014, 11:40 PM.


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by grayson
                      Yeah, I've taken that approach too. It works great as well (even better when you add a backing material). I tend prefer the adhesive patches in most cases, but that's largely personal preference.
                      It's more crude than patches I guess, but effective. I just always have thread, needle, and seam grip on hand which makes it more convenient.


                      • #12
                        No I should no....Are my wool pants a soft leather knickers?...What my friends is a hard shell and a soft shell? Member reading about it but didn't pay any attention cause I like what I have..No offense intended.....chuckling allowed...TM


                        • #13
                          uncle Pete,... wow! My sewing machine is vintage 1915 and doesn't do zig zag stitch, but awesome work there.

                          Grayson, I opted for your method. I got some tenacious tape (repair tape) from REI, and patched one side, then seam gripped the slice to get some glue on the frayed threads, then added the inside patch on top....

                          3pin, since I had never used seam grip before, I doubted that sew it up and seam grip it, would work.... but I guess that seam grip is good stuff from the way it's being discussed here...

                          Teleman, hard shell is like gortex (which is a brand name) It's very light shell material that repells water and is worn as a outter garment allowing you to combine any weight of underneath layers to suit that given day's temperatures. Some shells, (like the one I am repairing) have full length side zippers, so I can completely unzip the sides when I am climbing uphill on warm days, allowing the sweat to escape. Then when I reach the peak of my climb, I can zip up and stay warm and dry having let all the sweat from skinning uphill with the zippers open.... It's versitile and works well, especially with my area's onshore flow of storms. Sometimes it's raining at the base of the mountain and dumping a foot of snow 1,000. feet uphill. It's expensive $hit, so I am repairing it....

                          Thanks everyone for their input... the repair looks good...
                          Last edited by tele.skier; 28 May 2014, 06:53 PM.
                          the fall line is your friend.... resistance is futile


                          • #14
                            As always a good description and to add to it I think wool fits in the soft (non shell) mid layer category. There is nothing wrong with wearing a mid layer and no shell if you know it is going to be dry. I almost never climb in a soft or hard shell jacket. I am curious teleman what do you wear if anything as an outer layer if you know you are going to get wet?

                            I imagine leather would hold up better then any modern fabric with branches everywhere but I don't have to worry about that here.


                            • #15
                              If its really raining will wear light merino woo...l vest.. and a lite raincoat...(Cheap)...Large brimmed hat...(Umbrella like)...Leather knickers are well greased...they shed rain...gaitors keep rain outta the boots which are well oiled....For sweat...well below zero same but a light wool coat. My wife sewed a hood on my light wool jacket so that can help on a very cold day...(Cruising at below zero)....Warm days breathable wool knickers or leathers. ..merino undershirt...wool vest hat...It's important to stop and get it together so as not to be a sweatball....For really cold days mostly we keep moving....If we stop to eat we generally get a fire going...makes for more breathable clothing!!!! TM