1. #1
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    Default New turnout gear configuration

    We are re-visiting our choice in turnout gear selection. We have been using the following combination for several years: Globe GX-7 with PBI Matrix, Gore RT7100 Moisture Barrier, and a Reprocessed Aramid Batting Thermal liner. We also have a few sets of Sperian Ultra Motion with the same setup for fabrics.

    We have been happier with the fit and comfort of the Sperian, and one of their plants is in our hometown. We were just informed by an employee there, who is also a member of our fire department, that Sperian will stop making gear soon as they were purchased by Honeywell, who also owns Morning Pride.

    I am mainly looking at Globe G-Extreme, G-Xcel, and Morning Pride gear. I'm not really here to ask questions on which to buy, or which is better. What I want to know is what would be the best configuration for us.

    Lets assume that price is not an object, although we all know it is to a degree.

    Here are my current priorities in order for turnout gear:
    1. Comfort - lightweight, flexible, cooler in hot weather, breathable, etc.
    2. Durability - a new set must last for quite a while
    3. Thermal Performance - I rate this lower, because I feel that any modern gear offers enough protection, and we are wearing the gear for fires a lot less than other activities.
    4. Price - We are willing to pay for good stuff

    What combination of Outer Shell, Moisture Barrier, and Thermal Liner would you pick to best meet these priorities?

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    Quote Originally Posted by blaster668 View Post
    We are re-visiting our choice in turnout gear selection. We have been using the following combination for several years: Globe GX-7 with PBI Matrix, Gore RT7100 Moisture Barrier, and a Reprocessed Aramid Batting Thermal liner. We also have a few sets of Sperian Ultra Motion with the same setup for fabrics.

    We have been happier with the fit and comfort of the Sperian, and one of their plants is in our hometown. We were just informed by an employee there, who is also a member of our fire department, that Sperian will stop making gear soon as they were purchased by Honeywell, who also owns Morning Pride.

    I am mainly looking at Globe G-Extreme, G-Xcel, and Morning Pride gear. I'm not really here to ask questions on which to buy, or which is better. What I want to know is what would be the best configuration for us.

    Lets assume that price is not an object, although we all know it is to a degree.

    Here are my current priorities in order for turnout gear:
    1. Comfort - lightweight, flexible, cooler in hot weather, breathable, etc.
    2. Durability - a new set must last for quite a while
    3. Thermal Performance - I rate this lower, because I feel that any modern gear offers enough protection, and we are wearing the gear for fires a lot less than other activities.
    4. Price - We are willing to pay for good stuff

    What combination of Outer Shell, Moisture Barrier, and Thermal Liner would you pick to best meet these priorities?
    So you aren't asking what to buy, but you want to know what is best, even though you aren't asking for which is best and money isn't important but we all know its important......?

    If comfort is your biggest priority, try them on. MP has always been my most comfortable gear but its durability is lower than other gear I've worn, and its thermal protection is subjective, depending on what you call hot.
    ‎"I was always taught..." Four words impacting fire service education in the most negative of ways. -Bill Carey

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    Quote Originally Posted by blaster668 View Post
    Here are my current priorities in order for turnout gear:
    1. Comfort - lightweight, flexible, cooler in hot weather, breathable, etc.
    2. Durability - a new set must last for quite a while
    3. Thermal Performance - I rate this lower, because I feel that any modern gear offers enough protection, and we are wearing the gear for fires a lot less than other activities.
    4. Price - We are willing to pay for good stuff

    What combination of Outer Shell, Moisture Barrier, and Thermal Liner would you pick to best meet these priorities?
    For the past 5 years, my department has been using PBI Matrix, 3-layer E-89 and Crosstech. Overall it has performed very well in terms of comfort, durability and protection.

    We just received our new gear. We are now using a combination of Advance, a Synergy 2-layer liner and Crosstech. The outer shell was supposed to be Advance Ultra, but not sure where/why/how that change occurred. We made the change in shell for economic reasons. The Advance Ultra was similar in performance to the PBI Matrix, but over $100 cheaper per set.

    The E-89 liner was not our first choice 5 years ago, the liner that was our first choice was not available at the time and this was recommended as an alternate. Our current liner is a new product. It has better breathability, but a little less thermal protection.

    I've only worn my new set in 1 fire so far, but it seems no different from my other set. I'm concerned about the long-term durability of the Advance as our outer shell because we beat up the PBI pretty good.

    If price isn't an issue, then I think you'd do well with a combination of PBI Matix, Synergy 2-layer liner and Crosstech. Advance Ultra is a good alternate shell since it performs similar to PBI, but at a lower cost if you need to save a few dollars.

    As for pricing, I've found that MP pricing is comparable to Globe's G-xtreme if you match them feature for feature as best as possible. The G-xcel is a little cheaper. Overall, I prefer MP to Globe and the G-xtreme to the G-xcel in terms of fit, comfort and features.

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    We recently asked many of the same questions that you have.

    We wanted comfort, breathability and safety.

    We did have Advance / RT7100 / Aralite NP

    We ended up going with PBI / Crosstech 2C / Caldura SL2

    We had Advance but the members complained of it being a little on the stiff side. So then we looked at Advance Ultra. It was more expensive than Advance but cheaper than PBI. The Advance Ultra seemed bomb-proof and it felt that way. Man it was stiff. We ended up going with PBI because it is comfortable and it gave good TPP numbers.

    In terms of durability, of the three above, Advance Ultra is the strongest, Advance is next, then PBI.

    Upgrades to the moisture barrier and thermal liner are where you see your greatest benefits in breathability or THL (total heat loss).

    I would definitely recommend an E89 thermal liner. A quality 2 layer E89 like Caldura SL2, Glide II or XE289 will be far and above a better liner than the batting style you have now and you will definately notice a difference.

    A high performance moisture barrier such as Crosstech also helps to increase your THL numbers. The higher the THL, the better. Again, this is where you are trying to keep your firefighters cool.

    Good luck.
    I can't believe they actually pay me to do this!!!

    One friend noted yesterday that a fire officer only carries a flashlight, sometimes prompting grumbling from firefighters who have to lug tools and hoses.
    "The old saying is you never know how heavy that flashlight can become," the friend said.
    -from a tragic story posted on firefighterclosecalls.com

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    Quote Originally Posted by tajm611 View Post
    So you aren't asking what to buy, but you want to know what is best, even though you aren't asking for which is best and money isn't important but we all know its important......?

    If comfort is your biggest priority, try them on. MP has always been my most comfortable gear but its durability is lower than other gear I've worn, and its thermal protection is subjective, depending on what you call hot.
    Again, I'm not looking for info on whether MP is better than Globe or vice-versa. You can't get an accurate feel for the total comfort with the demo set as it will likely be comprised of different materials for the three major components. Again, the durability, thermal protection, and heat loss ability depend more on the materials than the construction.

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    Quote Originally Posted by IronsMan53 View Post
    We recently asked many of the same questions that you have.

    We wanted comfort, breathability and safety.

    We did have Advance / RT7100 / Aralite NP

    We ended up going with PBI / Crosstech 2C / Caldura SL2

    We had Advance but the members complained of it being a little on the stiff side. So then we looked at Advance Ultra. It was more expensive than Advance but cheaper than PBI. The Advance Ultra seemed bomb-proof and it felt that way. Man it was stiff. We ended up going with PBI because it is comfortable and it gave good TPP numbers.

    In terms of durability, of the three above, Advance Ultra is the strongest, Advance is next, then PBI.

    Upgrades to the moisture barrier and thermal liner are where you see your greatest benefits in breathability or THL (total heat loss).

    I would definitely recommend an E89 thermal liner. A quality 2 layer E89 like Caldura SL2, Glide II or XE289 will be far and above a better liner than the batting style you have now and you will definately notice a difference.

    A high performance moisture barrier such as Crosstech also helps to increase your THL numbers. The higher the THL, the better. Again, this is where you are trying to keep your firefighters cool.

    Good luck.
    Thanks! This is exactly the type of info I am looking for. Does anyone have experience with the Millenia outer shell or the QUANTUM3D thermal liner? I seem to be getting an impression that the Crosstech moisture barrier is preferred over the others available.

    The main reason I'm partaking in this exercise is that the materials we are currently using were selected many years ago and know one seems to know why they were selected.

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    We have had trouble with Difco Crusader fabric.

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    Quote Originally Posted by blaster668 View Post
    Thanks! This is exactly the type of info I am looking for. Does anyone have experience with the Millenia outer shell or the QUANTUM3D thermal liner? I seem to be getting an impression that the Crosstech moisture barrier is preferred over the others available.

    The main reason I'm partaking in this exercise is that the materials we are currently using were selected many years ago and know one seems to know why they were selected.
    My general impression is that the Millenia is pretty stiff and uncomfortable. BTW, Advance Ultra is actually a blend of Advance (kevlar/nomex) and Millenia.

    Quantum3D is faily new and some departments are moving that way. We decided to let them be the guinea pigs as to how it works out. It is also slightly more pricey.
    I can't believe they actually pay me to do this!!!

    One friend noted yesterday that a fire officer only carries a flashlight, sometimes prompting grumbling from firefighters who have to lug tools and hoses.
    "The old saying is you never know how heavy that flashlight can become," the friend said.
    -from a tragic story posted on firefighterclosecalls.com

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    I'm tending to see a trend here that PBI Matrix is probably the most flexible of the higher end fabrics, does anyone disagree? Now for thermal liners, I've seen the CALDURA SL2 E89 suggested, but there appears to be a similar one listed by Globe: ARALITE SL2, are there advantages to one over the other?

    Does anyone have a rough idea on price increases going from Gore RT7100, and the reprocessed batting to Crosstech and one of these better thermal liners?

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    Quote Originally Posted by IronsMan53 View Post
    We ended up going with PBI / Crosstech 2C / Caldura SL2.
    This is excatly the combination we went with a few years back. No major issues, No major complaints.
    FTM-PTB-EGH-RFB-KTF

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    Quote Originally Posted by blaster668 View Post
    I'm tending to see a trend here that PBI Matrix is probably the most flexible of the higher end fabrics, does anyone disagree? Now for thermal liners, I've seen the CALDURA SL2 E89 suggested, but there appears to be a similar one listed by Globe: ARALITE SL2, are there advantages to one over the other?

    Does anyone have a rough idea on price increases going from Gore RT7100, and the reprocessed batting to Crosstech and one of these better thermal liners?
    Aralite and Caldura are both 2 layer E89 except Caldura has a slick cloth face.

    The price difference for the better moisure barrier and thermal liner will be a few hundred dollars a set.

    If you can get you hands on a manufacturer's catalog you can knock the list prices nearly in half to get an idea on pricing. That is, if they are willing to deal.
    I can't believe they actually pay me to do this!!!

    One friend noted yesterday that a fire officer only carries a flashlight, sometimes prompting grumbling from firefighters who have to lug tools and hoses.
    "The old saying is you never know how heavy that flashlight can become," the friend said.
    -from a tragic story posted on firefighterclosecalls.com

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