Technical

Marine Clothing

Published on 01 august 2015 at 0h00

Create a notification for "Technical"

Whether it’s in the marketing or in the technical developments, it’s generally acknowledged that there’s been a considerable evolution in the last twenty years. The basic setup of oilskin jacket and trousers has now given way to three distinct layers, each forming an independent protective cocoon but with other well-defined functions:
1 - Comfort: Comprised of underclothes whose primary function is to conserve body heat and evacuate perspiration
2 - Insulation: made up of fleece-type insulating materials
3 - Protection: The primary function is to keep out wind and water
For the latter, and at the risk of disappointing you, in terms of the textiles themselves, there hasn’t really been any new development for the last ten years, if not longer! Note that the famous Gore-Tex fiber, which is Teflon-based, was developed by the company Gore & Associates back in 1969! Supple, breathable and strong, clothing made from it has permanently mothballed any coated fabrics. Even though these might be cheaper, they’re not going to keep us enthusiastic die-hard sailors happy for very long. With the patent now expired and in the public domain, it is used by virtually every marine clothing manufacturer. The difference then is in experience, the quality of the seams and the comfort of the “ancillaries”: hood, neck, cuffs, etc. There’s only one way to choose: try them on. See that you feel protected, comfortable, that you can move easily and see well. And you might be a proponent of the traditional jacket, or a fan of the traditional fisherman’s smock: sportier not just in style but also in the taking off and putting on!
So what’s the latest trend I hear you ask. Well, it’s a return to roots more than 1,000 years old, with a come-back of Merino wool for the first layer. You don’t need to stick with nautical stores for this, but you could try outdoor or trail hiking suppliers if you're looking for the latest products. In addition to the natural warmth that is produced by this natural fiber produced by New Zealand sheep, it has an advantage, which had previously been considered a disadvantage: it has the ability to absorb a lot of moisture. This allows odor to be considerably limited! The latest polyamide / polyester fabrics protect us effectively from UV rays and dry so well, but have an absorption coefficient close to zero.
Without doubt, the least technical of our three layers, is the intermediate one, though it does play a crucial role, that of keeping our bodies warm. Cold is one of the three major factors in seasickness, along with hunger and fatigue. The ideal thing: without a shadow of doubt, what you need to help keep your body temperature up is a fleece, perhaps backed up by Gore-Tex for extreme latitudes. Even though most of the time we are ok with just a top, if it’s really cold, trousers or even fleece salopettes are a must. Offering maximum comfort, salopettes can be inconvenient at certain times. Unless they are fitted with a large semi-circular ...

Log in

Password forgotten ?

Become a member

Become a Multihulls World Community Member for free and get exclusive benefits

Become a member

Share this article