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How/Why To Maintain Technical Garments from McNett

Thursday, February 27th, 2014

We met with our friends at McNett during a recent trip to Seattle. One of the things we asked them if they could do was to share some info on how to use their products with our readers. Let’s face it, money isn’t there like it used to be and we are going to all have to become very good at maintaining what we have. McNett offers a great range of accessories and garment care products.

Routine cleaning and maintenance is necessary in order to keep technical fabrics performing at their best. Typically, technical fabrics are constructed of a face fabric (usually some type of nylon), a waterproof breathable membrane (i.e. GORE-TEX, eVent, etc.) and a liner fabric that rests against the body. The outer fabric is typically treated with a DWR (Durable Water Repellent) to help water bead up and roll off. It is extremely important that we keep these fabrics in top shape.

Many soldiers think that GORE-TEX and other waterproof breathable fabrics are fragile and should not be washed, but this is not the case. Cleaning technical fabrics only improves their performance; however, it is extremely important that you use a specialized cleaner. Typical “household” cleaners contain heavy residues, optical brighteners and fabric softeners which can also impact performance.

The chemicals used in fabric softeners build up and leave residues on your garment. These residues will cover the DWR coating on the outside of the item, which will allow water to spread out and soak into the fabric instead of beading up and rolling off. Residues from fabric softeners also tend to remain in the clothing fibers. The residues from fabric softeners can also affect the breathabilty of the waterproof breathable membrane as well.

Picture a water repellent as millions of tiny hairs standing straight on end. When a bead of water falls from the sky and lands on the hairs standing straight on end, it simply rolls off. With time, you get a build-up of dirt, smoke, body oils and other residues which tend to weigh down on those hairs standing straight on end. Now they are now longer standing straight up and when a bead of water falls from the sky, it begins to wet through the fabric as opposed to rolling right off. When this happens, you need to wash the garment with a cleaner that will remove all the residues and particulates without leaving behind additional residues.

All that said, it is extremely important that you use a clean rinsing detergent like ReviveX Synthetic Fabric Cleaner (http://www.mcnett.com/gearaid/synthetic-fabric-cleaner#36296) to rinse away the dirt, oils and residues which prevent the water repellent from shedding water and which also tend to clog the GORE-TEX membranes.

Once you have cleaned the garment with a specialized cleaner, many times you can restore the DWR and get the jacket to bead-up again by simply placing it in the dryer. If the DWR is still present, the heat will re-activate those tiny “hairs” and cause them to stand straight on end again. If the jacket is not repelling water after cleaning with a specialized cleaner and drying, then you will need to re-treat it with an aftermarket water repellent like ReviveX Durable Waterproofing (http://www.mcnett.com/gearaid/durable-waterproofing#36230). Start with a clean garment, spray it down with ReviveX Durable Waterproofing and dry according to the manufacturer’s recommendation or air dry for 48 hours.

Another benefit of the water-repellent finish (DWR) is that it allows passage of vapor more readily from inside the garment. Without this water repellent on the outer fabric, water can soak in and cool the surface as it evaporates. Moisture generated by a soldier’s body in the form of vapor can pass easily thorough the membrane unless the vapor contacts a cool surface; then it condenses into liquid (just as warm breath condenses into a liquid when it contacts a cool piece of glass). This is another reason why the water-repellent finish and the garment should be kept in good shape.

We all know that garments that wet-out and aren’t able to breath can lead to some pretty miserable times. With proper maintenance, however, we can prevent those uncomfortable moments outdoors and keep our garments dry while enhancing performance.

This post is brought to you by McNett. McNett offers products for maintaining, repairing, and waterproofing gear and clothing, and water purification, as well as microfiber towels and tactical products including lens cleaner and anti-fog, survival products, and Camo Form camouflage wrap.

www.mcnett.com

Nanotips On Kickstarter

Tuesday, February 11th, 2014

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Nanotips is a conductive polyamide liquid solution which mimics the touch of human skin. It’s designed to be applied to gloves to make them touchscreen compatible by creating a conductive bridge between the finger and the touchscreen device. It comes in two solutions: Nanotips Blue for use exclusively with fabric gloves, and Nanotips Black for leather, rubber, and other thicker material gloves. Each application can last from a few weeks to several months, dependent on how the gloves are used, and can be reapplied as needed.

www.kickstarter.com/projects/474489652/nanotips-touchscreen-solution-for-all-gloves

GRID-HERCULES Chest-Rig Solutions

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

GRID-HERCULES Chest-Rig Solutions

Click to view .pdf

We’ve mentioned the Grid-Hercules material several times over the past few months and we saw several applications during SHOT Show. This flyer shows some chest rig applications of the material.

abseconindustries.com

Brand & Oppenheimer Acquires Performance Textiles, Inc

Tuesday, January 21st, 2014

RED BANK, N.J. – January 21, 2014 – Brand & Oppenheimer Co., Inc. (B&O), a leading textile converter, today announced it has acquired the assets of Performance Textiles, Inc., a leading supplier of high-performance fabrics engineered for domestic and export customers, some of whom have worked with the company since its inception in 1988. The acquisition was sponsored by Praesidian Capital, which is an investor in B&O.

The consensual acquisition will complement B&O’s textile capabilities with a diversified product line targeted to sports, recreational products, high visibility work-wear, commercial, military and government end uses. Founded by Bill Gerrow and Peter Sullivan, Performance Textiles has an industry reputation for designing and producing some of the best fabrics available in the market. Safety, maximum performance, and durability continue to be the main focus and are critical for fabrics that are destined for use in parachutes, hot air balloons, and industrial protective vests.

“Performance Textiles is a unique and well established company in our industry with similar production processes and suppliers to ours,” stated Dan Pezold, B&O President and CEO. “The company has distinguished itself as a technology leader, and its technical expertise along with strong customer and supplier relationships are valued additions to our business. We believe our combined resources will benefit everyone in the textile supply chain.”

“We look forward to the new opportunities that come with joining the Brand & Oppenheimer family. Our combined resources will allow us to serve our customers with new and different textile solutions,” Gerrow stated. “What will not change, however, is the excellent service and development of textile technology solutions to which our customers have become accustomed over the past 25 years.”

According to Jason Drattell, Founding Partner of Praesidian, “Since our initial investment in B&O, the company has attracted new management and developed a more strategic focus. We believe that the acquisition of Performance Textiles is an important step in that strategic plan.”

Blue Force Gear Licenses Helium Whisper to The Safariland Group

Saturday, January 18th, 2014

Very interesting news from Blue Force Gear. I noticed Safariland has been adopting the new webbingless MOLLE technology.

LAS VEGAS, NV—January 17, 2014—Blue Force Gear® announced today that they have reached an agreement with The Safariland Group to license their Helium Whisper™ technology for U.S. domestic manufacture as part of PROTECH® Tactical, an armor brand of The Safariland Group. The Safariland Group is the largest company to receive licensing rights for Helium Whisper and will use the Patent pending technology to enhance products they provide to law enforcement markets.

“The Safariland Group shares our passion for helping the good guys to make it home safe,” said Ashley Burnsed, founder and CEO of Blue Force Gear. “We are extremely happy to work with them.”

Combining PROTECH Tactical’s cutting edge armor with lighter modular pouches allows officers to respond to emerging threats with speed and agility.

“The Safariland Group has a reputation for offering innovative and exciting products to the law enforcement market,” said Glenn Katz, Vice President of Sales and Marketing for The Safariland Group. “We are excited to bring this excellent product line to a wider audience through this distribution and licensing agreement with Blue Force Gear.”

Helium Whisper allows modular pouch backs to be constructed from a single piece of high-performance laminate versus the multiple straps and snaps of older attachment systems. This amazing breakthrough increases strength and durability of pouches while eliminating failure points and reducing weight by up to 60 percent. Helium Whisper has a proven track record with elite U.S. Special Operations Forces.

SHOT Show – ITW Nexus APA

Friday, January 17th, 2014

I was invited into the tent at the ITW Nexus Advanced Products and Accessories booth to drink an Orange Crush and take a look at something new. The Grim-lite takes the popular Grimloc and adds a Streamlight Nano.

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Next is the Tiki Buckle. Inspired by a well known gear guru (not me) the Tiki Buckle gives high horizontal and vertical strength to attaché webbing to MOLLE. It incorporates ITW’s patented wave technology in order to prevent slippage of the webbing.

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But the coolest thing is the Rail-Loc. Obviously, this is the coolest thing to happen to side release buckles since they started making them in Ghillie-Tex. The Picatinny compatible Rail-Loc connects right unto your rail and tightens in place via a Phillips head bolt. Then, you can connect a standard 1″ SR male buckle into the Rail-Loc.

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www.ITWmilitaryproducts.com

Announcing Light and Fast GORE-TEX Fabric – Debuting at SHOT Show

Tuesday, January 14th, 2014

You are going to see this new material in garments here at SHOT Show. Keep your eye put.

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ELKTON, MD, JANUARY 13, 2014 – - The light and fast GORE-TEX® fabric from W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc. is an extremely breathable, lightweight fabric that provides durable waterproof and windproof protection with improved next-to-skin comfort. The new technology significantly reduces build-up of under-layer condensation during and after periods of high intensity activity without sacrificing environmental protection. Key industry leaders, including ADS, Arc’Teryx, Patagonia, and Wild Things, are introducing new products that feature this new lightweight, highly breathable fabric.

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Gore will be exhibiting the new light and fast GORE-TEX® fabric at the upcoming SHOT Show, Jan 14-17, Sands Expo Center, Las Vegas, NV, in booth #10370.

www.goremilitary.com

Camo Form Camo Wrap Gets New Look And Updated Patterns For 2014

Sunday, January 12th, 2014

Camo Form®, the self-adhering camo wrap by McNett® Tactical, is pleased to announce a bold new package and updated camouflage patterns for 2014.

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Bellingham, WA (PRWEB) - Camo Form®, the heavy-duty camo wrap by McNett® Tactical, is pleased to unveil bold new packing and updated camouflage patterns for 2014.

“We’re upping our game with revived packaging and eye-catching designs,” said Gerald Craft, brand marketing director. “In addition, we continue to innovate upon our current camouflage patterns with new and original designs.”

Packaging changes include a cool new design featuring bright green colors and authentic imagery; a tabbed color system to help specific patterns stand out on the peg; product-in-use photos which highlight the product’s versatility; and updated branding.

Camouflage patterns slated for release in 2014 include, Kryptek Highlander™, Kryptek Typhon™, Mossy Oak Break-Up Infinity®, Mossy Oak Shadow Grass® Blades®, Realtree Xtra®, Realtree Max-5®, Wolf Grey and Skulls.

Look for new packaging to begin shipping to store shelves on January 2. Visit http://www.mcnett.com/tactical/camoform for new camouflage pattern release dates in 2014.

www.mcnett.com/tactical

A New Use For The MALICE Clip?

Monday, December 23rd, 2013

Elysium

Tactical Tailor provided some gear for the movie, “Elysium”. Some of the kit was really cool and wasn’t sure how, or even if, their stuff had been used, until they watched the DVD and then noticed a MALICE clip being used for cable management. Now, I’m sure somebody is going to tell us that they do this ALL of the time, but I’ve never seen anyone do it. To me, it’s pretty interesting to see what happens when you give a piece of gear to someone who doesn’t know what it’s for. Sometimes they’ll surprise you.

US4CES Bravo and Charlie Variants Released For Sale

Monday, December 16th, 2013

ADS Inc. and US4CES designer Guy Cramer, have decided to use Hyperstealth’s print on demand process developed by Cramer, President/CEO of Hyperstealth to release 45 new US4CES patterns in two new series: 15 US4CES Bravo Series patterns and 30 US4CES Charlie Series patterns to the commercial market and for printed camouflage trial material to foreign countries outside of the U.S. looking for a new advanced camouflage uniform.

The Alpha variants of US4CES are finalists in the still unresolved US Army Camouflage Improvement Effort and are not yet available for sale. However, with any of these patterns, you get the same technology improvements offered to the Army but in different colorways. Another difference between Alpha and Bravo, is in the color layering, reversing the order of lightest to darkest colors (the patterns are identical other than the color order). Additionally, none of these are NIR compliant.

BRAVO

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The Delta variants were also developed for the US Army and in internal testing Cramer found that they performed better. The Charlie variants have been released for sale commercially. The difference between US4CES Delta and Charlie is in the color layering, reversing the order of lightest to darkest colors.

CHARLIE

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70/30 Poly/Cotton Lightweight fabric is now available for order in 5 yd increments. So everybody that has been chomping at the bit to get their hands on the US4CES patterns, this is your chance.

For more info visit www.hyperstealth.com/US4CES-Bravo-Charlie.