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PrimaLoft – Warmer Drier Softer

The most remarkable thing about this photo of Navy SEALs undergoing cold weather training at Det-Kodiak in Alaska is the expression on their faces. Or, better yet, their lack of expression. The reason is simple. In addition to training they are wearing garments insulated with PrimaLoft. In fact, PrimaLoft is used in cold weather loft layers used by all four services as well as SOCOM. If you’ve deployed in the past few years, chances are good you’ve relied on PrimaLoft.

Originally developed during the 1980s, the US Army commissioned Albany International to work on a water resistant synthetic alternative to down. What they came up with is PrimaLoft, used for military as well as commercial applications. However, in the meantime, they hardly been sitting around resting on their laurels. For instance, they’ve recently improved the performance of PrimaLoft Sport with their Convection Technology to offer 15% more loft than previous versions.

One of several things that PrimaLoft has going for it is a waterproof treatment that is cured into its fibers. This process results in PrimaLoft fibers adsorb only about 100 to 250% weight in water while many other polyester fibers will absorb up 400% to 1000% of their weight in water. Take a look at the diagram above. As you can see, PrimaLoft Sport does a pretty good job of retaining its CLO value* whether wet or dry. Additionally, PrimaLoft uses fibers that are less than one denier (a single strand of silk is essentially one denier) in thickness. This translates to increased compressibility.

If you’ve been using clothing insulated with PrimaLoft while deployed, you might want to know that numerous manufacturers also rely on it for their commercial products. For instance, you might be interested in this Spindrift Jacket from KUIU for use while hunting. You’d be amazed to see who’s using it. What’s more, you can even get bedding featuring PrimaLoft. To learn more, visit www.primaloft.com.

*One Clo represents the amount of insulation required to keep a resting person warm in an indoor room at 70°F (21.1°C). Clo ratings in oz/sq yd allow you to compare relative thermal performance of one insulation versus another.

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4 Responses to “PrimaLoft – Warmer Drier Softer”

  1. Eric says:

    I have used Weezle Wear, which was one of the first undergarment mfg in the UK to make undergarments for Drysuits with it. Super warm, light weight, and can pack very compact.

  2. Golf1echo says:

    Thanks for the article. We use one of the new Prima loft Insulations in all our G1 Recon Liners, I can’t say enough good things about it. We test everything we make extensively as well as our end users in field and can vouch for how well this insulation performs. It works very well with jackets and pants made of same and together you significantly reduce weight and increase function! Hard to imagine how well this light weight highly compressible material performs. One the biggest problem we have is all of our end users have submitted things like ” It’s like sleeping in a fluffy cloud.”, difficult to apply this to our marketing especial because of who our customers are. The other problem is the liners quite often get borrowed…wink.

  3. Bart says:

    It should be noted that there is a BIG difference between dry-insulation performance, wet-insulation performance, and submerged-in-near-freezing-water performance. Dig I miss that part ?

  4. Old Paratrooper says:

    Bart, what’s your point?