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Most durable pants/pant material, best repair options


Eplumer400 · · Cleveland, OH · Joined May 2016 · Points: 115

I've had good luck with my 5.11 tac-lite pants. Wore them throughout the police academy, wore them camping and climbing several times, and now wear them on duty where other pairs of pants haven't held up. The knee fabric is discolored but I have no rips or tears anywhere, and they're about 4 years old.

Seton Kriese · · Victoria, BC · Joined Aug 2017 · Points: 15

Forrest Carver wrote:

I actually considered buying a pair of Nomex pants as I've found them to be indestructible, but I can't get over having flame resistant pants without needing that feature.

I wore Nomex pants firefighting all summer this year and didn't find them particularly indestructible. They are very abrasion resistant but tear easily and the seams aren't that well constructed. It was pretty common for either the cargo pockets to rip off or the crotch to rip open in the field. At least that was the case with the ones issued by the BC Wildfire Service (we have the best colours though, red and blue ftw). They also get very rough and stiff when they've soaked up a week's worth of dirt and sweat (not sure if long term use without washing is a concern to you). Good luck

Forrest Carver · · Edgecomb, ME · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 45

I used the same single pair of Nomex pants for the 2010 and 2011 fire seasons and had great luck (not sure the brand but they were navy blue and we got them from Supply Cache.) One of the cargo pockets did rip off but it didn't affect the pant and I wound up just tearing the other one off as well as I never used them. They definitely did get pretty stiff after a two week roll, although in civilization I would wash them occasionally, haha

Sounds like I need to try out the OR Ferrosi and Prana Zion. Thanks again for the responses, and let me know if you have more patching/sewing tips for my dead garments

physnchips · · Boulder, CO · Joined Jan 2016 · Points: 0

You can also get some cheap ass wrangler jeans with some stretch from Target. For warmer days Prana Zion is where it's at (but not worth it if you pay full price, they go on sale relatively often).

Andy McQuillen · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2017 · Points: 20

I also recommend anything that uses Prana Stretch Zion.  I wore a pair of their shorts when I did a thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail.  In 3 months and nearly 2200 miles of hiking, butt-scooting, and sitting in rocks the only damage they had was from a hole in the bottom of my pocket that steals my chapstick. I use them for climbing occasionally as well.  EVERYTHING else I've worn (Patagonia, Mountain Hardwear, The North Face, and some mountain biking apparel company) have torn or ripped or lost a button/zipper within a year of weekend use.

DRusso · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2014 · Points: 380

Also if you like the stretch zion but want to wear them not outside, or you just don't want to look like a dork with cargo pockets. Then check out the Prana Brion pant. Same fabric slightly trimmer cut no dorky cargo pockets.

Old lady H · · Boise, Idaho · Joined Aug 2015 · Points: 290
Forrest Carver wrote:

Thanks OLH for the repair tips. Have you or anyone had luck with Bituthene (sp?) patches or kevlar thread?

No experience with what you mentioned. The quilt thread you get at fabric stores, threatens to slice your hand before it breaks. 

You can get sheets of iron on adhesive for fabric, too, and use those to make a patch or reinforcement out of any material you want. Or, ya know, have fun embellishing your pants with Holstein cows, or whatever.

Full disclosure, I very rarely buy new stuff. I've had better luck at thrift stores, because many more sizes/styles/brands show up there than any retail brick and mortar can ever carry. I'm very short, but not tiny, so I have to wade through ten pairs to get two. They are trash by the time I'm done, as they start out suitable to wear to work jeans, go out in public jeans, climbing/camping jeans, then finally painting and yard work stuff, at which point dumpster diving would improve my wardrobe. Stretchy or baggy works for climbing, just fine, for me, but I don't bend great anymore, so....

Dunno what you have where you live, but we have a business here that makes packs and such, and they are ridiculously reasonable to get a heavy duty zipper replaced, grommets, metal stud buttons, that sort of thing done. With the right equipment, it's fast and easy. Without? Not so much.

Hayden Brown · · Bozeman, MT · Joined Sep 2016 · Points: 0

Carhart double knee pants.

Sam RC · · Unknown Hometown · Joined Jul 2016 · Points: 15

Carhartts are both easily patchable and by far the most durable. Sometimes it’s best to just go cheap because certain activities mess things up. Try good will. 

Forrest Carver · · Edgecomb, ME · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 45

OK, one of the distributors we deal with offers new OR Ferrosi pants for about $40, is that a good deal or should I keep waiting?

Matthew Tangeman · · Unknown Hometown · Joined May 2015 · Points: 35
Forrest Carver wrote:

OK, one of the distributors we deal with offers new OR Ferrosi pants for about $40, is that a good deal or should I keep waiting?

That's a pretty good deal, I'd do it. Though I will say I've ripped my Ferrosi's somewhat to shreds after about two years - though some of that comes from crampon tears and my own negligence. I'd still recommend them, they're comfy and look good, nice and stretchy for climbing, and didn't rip other times when I thought they would. Hard to go wrong with that price.

fossana · · leeds, ut · Joined Apr 2006 · Points: 12,957

Schoeller fabric + gusseted crotch

For anything super grovelly I go the thrift store route like OLH.

Hayden Brown · · Bozeman, MT · Joined Sep 2016 · Points: 0

no pants

Nate Soy · · Unknown Hometown · Joined 10 days ago · Points: 0

Not climbing pants, but try Unbranded 21oz jeans-https://theunbrandedbrand.com/collections/all/products/ub621-relaxed-tapered-fit-21oz-indigo-selvedge?variant=36572130384.they are around 100 bucks. The "relaxed tapered" fit is a similar fit to a jogger pants or sweatpants. Very baggy everywhere except the ankle. They are very heavy but highly abrasion resistant. They are made by the same company that makes the most heavy denim on the market- https://tateandyoko.com/products/naked-famous-weird-guy-super-heavyweight-32oz-selvedge-indigo?variant=496978505.....If you are unfamiliar with this type of denim, it falls under the category of "raw denim". You basically get a rip in the jeans as a badge of honor, like "ya bro, I just climb in these thats why I ripped them". The more you wear them the more "character" they get in them, similar to buying a pair of jeans that is already ripped and distressed. Other than that, they are just really durable which is my main reason for buying them. The fashion thing is secondary but its nice to wear something hard and have it gain fashion points rather than lose value.

RandyLee · · Los Angeles, CA · Joined May 2016 · Points: 5

I wear the OR ferrosi when it's hot but I don't want to wear shorts. It's not durable, it's a tight fit stretchy softshell fabric. Not good the right ones to go hard in. I much prefer 5.11 tac lite for beaters, or MH passenger utility pants, which could go crag to life well until I started doing offwidths in them. The 5.11 I don't have quite as much leg flexibility in, but more than "normal" jeans. 

highaltitudeflatulentexpulsion · · Colorado · Joined Oct 2012 · Points: 35

My favorite sport climbing and backpacking pants are Carhartt scrubs. Very durable fr the weight and $32 at most scrub stores. 

For warmer and more durability, I use Carhartt single knee duck pants. I've never wanted for more flexibility. $40 at Sierra.

I would like to try Duluth firehose pants but they start at 32 and I'm skinnier than that.

I climb Alpine and ice in softshell pants, usually Patagonia but sometimes Lowe. No complaint there but I don't have the mass of days on them.

alpinejason · · Minneapolis · Joined Apr 2010 · Points: 175
highaltitudeflatulentexpulsion wrote:

I would like to try Duluth firehose pants but they start at 32 and I'm skinnier than that.

The DuluthFlex Firehose pants are my favorite work pants I've used in the last 6-7 years. The flex makes all the difference but decreases their durability slightly..

Duluth Trading Co's sizing all around (not just pants) is generally pretty bonkers so those 32 pants are realistically 34s.

that guy named seb · · Britland · Joined Oct 2015 · Points: 205

Thought i might as well plug this, I'm currently talking to suppliers and manufactures about making a dyneema hemp blend pair of knit jeans, should be more durable than pretty much anything else like it on the market.

alpinejason · · Minneapolis · Joined Apr 2010 · Points: 175

Also I have the OR Ferrosi and Prana Zion. Both are great pants and comfortable but wouldn't put either in the same durability category of Carhertt, Dickies, Duluth Trading, etc or just a good ol' pair of blue jeans. Seems silly to even compare.

Forrest Carver · · Edgecomb, ME · Joined Jul 2014 · Points: 45
alpinejason wrote:

Also I have the OR Ferrosi and Prana Zion. Both are great pants and comfortable but wouldn't put either in the same durability category of Carhertt, Dickies, Duluth Trading, etc or just a good ol' pair of blue jeans. Seems silly to even compare.

I hope this is not the case, and that the stretch of the Ferrosis solve at least one of my issues. 

In my experience, Carhartts are a joke and Dickies not much better. Never tried Duluth but bad reviews turned me away. Good blue jeans rank just below Carhartts

Guideline #1: Don't be a jerk.

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