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Keela jackets

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Old Thursday 11th July 2019, 08:52   #1
DocSarvis
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Keela jackets

Iím wondering if any of the Forum members from the U.K. can give me some input/ feedback on the Keela line of clothing, specifically the Lomond waterproof jacket for men and the Falkland Country Ventile jacket...again for men. Keela has no dealers in the USA but Amazon UK will ship to the states for a very reasonable fee. Both these jackets appear on first look to be an extremely good value for money especially the ventile item. The Lomond uses a breathable membrane and is around £75 whilst the ventile coat goes about £225 which I gather is rather a low price for genuine ventile.

Any input will be welcome before I make a blind purchase.

Many thanks!
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Old Thursday 11th July 2019, 15:10   #2
rosbifs
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I have keela ski pants which have been very good and very hard wearing.

When I bought them they supplied various mountain rescue outfits in Scotland, can’t say if that’s still the case but was a great recommendation at the time.

The key with clothing of this nature is the waterproof ness and the breathabilty. Goretex are the kings and others imitate. Waterproof ness needs to exceed 20k mm to really be waterproof....
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Old Sunday 14th July 2019, 18:44   #3
Steve Babbs
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Originally Posted by rosbifs View Post
I have keela ski pants which have been very good and very hard wearing.

When I bought them they supplied various mountain rescue outfits in Scotland, canít say if thatís still the case but was a great recommendation at the time.

The key with clothing of this nature is the waterproof ness and the breathabilty. Goretex are the kings and others imitate. Waterproof ness needs to exceed 20k mm to really be waterproof....
Gortex is the one everyone presumes is king. Event fabric more highly rated by many people but Gortex won't allow manufacturers that event to also use Gortex and it's Gortex that people know. I'm not actually sure what Keela use but the bloke in the shop I bought it from - which also sold lots of Gortex stuff - claimed it was a considerable improvement on Gortex.

https://norwaygeographical.com/gore-tex-alternatives/

I have a Keela jacket. They are very highly rated. It's great in the rain but I find it slightly on the heavy and warm side for serious mountain walking, which is what I bought it for. I do wear it for birding some times but i generally avoid birding in the rain.

I use a pertex shield jacket as my main rain jacket as it very light weight.
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Old Saturday 27th July 2019, 10:07   #4
dogbreath
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I know people who have been issued with Keela membrane jackets as part of their outdoor "uniform" and rate them highly. That said, my friends say they are warm (which is fine for not too active activities - like hanging around in hides). I cannot comment on ventile garments because I have never used one.

As for Goretx being "king" - fine if I want a "boil in the bag" experience but I have found other fabrics to suit me better. But that is a whole different thread.
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Old Wednesday 31st July 2019, 08:46   #5
Satyrium
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I've had a Keela Falkland Country jacket for about 10 years now, and I'm still happy with it.

It's kept me dry in all-day heavy rain, and doesn't need re-proofing, just a very occasional wash with Nik-wax Tech Wash. It's slow drying though compared to man-made fabrics, and this can lead to a musty smell if it's not properly aired off.

Although it's fairly lightweight, it can get a bit warm if you're doing some serious walking with a backpack. I wore mine last weekend when it was raining quite heavily, and I soon got hot and sweaty.
Ventile also gets stiffer as it gets wet, although since this is single layer I haven't found it to be a problem

Overall though, I'm pleased with it and would happily buy another if I needed to.
Hope this helps,

Dave
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Old Wednesday 31st July 2019, 10:52   #6
Andrew Clarke
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I bought a Keela jacket 20 years ago (canít remember model but some DWR type finish) and was impressed with the price being cheaper than other shells.

The model I had was on the warm side but not overbearingly; great from autumn through to spring and has served me well in the mountains during winter even with a fleece(s) or insulated jacket underneath. In summer I tend to wear light shells. Initially it worked well at keeping the rain out but inevitably after several soakings and despite reproofing it leaked and became a gardening jacket where it worked well being pretty tough and thorn resistant - which is the main reason Iíve never bought a top of the range Paramo as they look like they wouldnít last two minutes in a bramble patch.

Bought another Keela about 9 years ago that did exactly the same - worked well in the rain for a few years then leaked. Again became a gardening jacket! One annoying problem with both is that the loop to hang the jacket up by the collar failed quickly with both - apart from that Iíd rate them as pretty good value.

Had various waterproofs over the years and a lovely Hilltrek Ventile bought in 2007 which is still going strong. Not totally waterproof but incredibly tough and the most windproof jacket Iíve owned. I heard a saying from Scandinavia that you should have a different jacket for each season which is very true. You have to moult your plumage according to the weather.

I used to work in a mountaineering shop and each week a company rep would pop by and blind us with science about ďthe latestĒ new fabric. I have become incredibly cynical about this sort of marketing hype. Iím not up to date with the current fabrics (which do indeed actually improve over time) and do need to replace several worn out waterproofs myself but take advice more from birding acquaintances than a marketing team. Amy comments on really waterproof birding shells from BF members would be appreciated.

So listen to your friends, try lots of jackets on and find whatís comfortable. Good advice I had from a mountain rescue team member and hardcore climber I knew was to wear an expensive hi-tech waterproof under a relatively cheap Gelert shell. The latter got coated in grime and he stayed warm and dry while belaying or scrambling up dirty, wet routes.

Good Birding

Andrew
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