RAB clothing quality?/Brands quality?

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  • RAB clothing quality?/Brands quality?
  • Premier Icon angeldust

    Rab quality went downhill and was patchy ~5-7ish years ago (iirc), but all the recent stuff is much improved, and very well made.

    Generally can’t fault TNF quality of construction. People think negatively about the brand simply because it is everywhere and there is no exclusivity left in the logo.


    Been very impressed with my tnf apex trousers , well made and fit very well
    Only used rab down stuff not there water proofs , the down has been very good but mine is very old and uk made

    Premier Icon vondally

    Hi looking at a RAB waterproof jacket at the moment and wondered what is the quality/robustness/durability is like, used to be one of the best brands has this changed?

    Then started to ponder what are the brands that have kept up on their quality control,before Karrimor was sold to Sports Direct and was in Lancashire their equipment/clothing was hit and miss. North Face seems to have headed down market so what is a solid brand.

    I have had great use from
    Mountain Equipment (Peter Hutchinson days)
    Ground Effect
    Osprey bags
    Raichle boots (now Mammut)
    Buffalo top
    Marmot jackets and softshells
    Lowe Alpine tops jackets fleeces
    Aldi base layers
    Mixed results from
    Decathlon mainly highly positive just a couple of items

    so what is working for you folk/recommendations


    RAB stuff is the bees! had loads and never had any issues, 3L goretex, and various other materials all brill! tend to buy cheap as possible these days though because they just seem to get ripped.

    I also rate the following
    La sportiva or scarpa for footwear.
    Mountain Hardware
    Montane (flimsy but super lightweight makes great climbing gear)
    Berghaus has lost its appeal to many but are using up to date fabrics and good cuts again and can be had for bargain prices.

    Premier Icon richen987

    there is Mountain HArdware Sale on on the Sports Pursuit site at the moment. very nice jackets and very good quality.


    I can also recommend the current Rab equipment, just come back from 3 weeks climbing and trekking in Nepal.
    I used predominantly Rab outer kit, the Rab Stretch Neo Shell Jacket and Trousers were used in some pretty epic rain and never once got close to leaking, they were also extremely breathable for walking and climbing duties.
    I have a new goretex active fit jacket as well for comparison and it was not as breathable as the neo shell.

    If you can find it anywhere Sherpa Gear was also being used a lot by the climbing sherpas and the guys I spoke to using it were very complimentry, it does have a stiff price tag, but the quality was right up there.

    Premier Icon mikewsmith

    Karrimore went downhill long before Sport Direct, when they were going bust once a month about 10 years ago they were shocking.

    Premier Icon vondally

    agreed mike but some surprising gems as well


    My experience of Rab echoes angeldust’s. Equip (who own it) happily replaced stuff though.

    I have some Arcteryx soft shell trousers which have lasted very very well. Much more durable than equivalent priced Mammut and ME trousers I’ve had.

    Had a couple of decent Montane jackets as well, and would buy again.

    Rogan Josh

    ME proshell jackets are great waterproof layers, and the haglofs ones seem good also.

    Most of rab shells are event as oppose to goretex which doesn’t do it for me. Their fleece, vr and in particular down stuff is mega tho.

    Premier Icon ransos

    My Rab waterproof is fantastic. I’ve needed to re-treat it just once in the two years I’ve owned it, and it looks as good as new.


    Been very pleased with my Rab waterproof jacket. Really well made and well thought-out features. Customer services very good too – friendly and answered my questions very quickly. Would buy again.

    Premier Icon kcal

    Have a RAB down sleeping bag from ages (18 years maybe) ago – was a birthday present, couldn’t have afforded it myself!
    It’s good, only piece of Rab kit I have though.

    Other stuff – not strictly technical worth a look is the old stalwart Rohan kit. I have a bundle of Rohan kit form easily 25 years go, will never wear out, some used for gardening now but just indestructible and work great..

    thinking of the multiflex breeches, fleece Khombo pullover, Olfio padded pullover – even the Pampas cotton jacket – not sure if that’s the stuff you’re thinking of though.

    Premier Icon vondally

    Rohan not thought of their gear.

    Any views on Odlo?


    RAB Latok jacket over here ..

    Excellent performance on the hills – about 5 years old and still going strong, very practical design and well made.

    Premier Icon vondally

    any other thjoughts/views

    Premier Icon tomd

    I’ve got quite a lot of Rab stuff. Summary is I keep buying it, they make good stuff but aren’t afraid to test the odd product on their customers!

    Pertex equilibrium jacket and trousers – good stuff, well made
    Light down jacket thing – returned and refund, bad batch (about 3 years ago)
    Pertex / primaloft shell – really great jacket
    MeCo baselayer – baselayer of choice but now threadbare after much use
    Spark jacket – great bit of kit, however on warranty replacement due to taping. New fabric for 2013 so kind of expected.
    eVent Bivi bag – very good, not much to get wrong though


    i have the momentum jacket very good light weight shell – event fabric and several of the meco base layers they are ace. also got latok apline pants which are superb. i have a fair selection of outdoor clothing from both rab,TNF and haglofs. all are good brands


    Had and have a lot of RAB stuff. Down jackets are mint and have had a few windproof jackets too. I had a Rab event waterproof jacket but it was a technical jacket so was quite fitted and didnt get on with it.

    Some of the first karrimor KSB boots were mint. I’d love to get my hands on a pair. They were like slippers.


    Bad experience of a Rab Latok jacket. A leak through the stitching that took quite a while to warranty. As it was apparently a special colour they couldn’t replace it. Got my money back but in the space of 10 months the price had gone up by about 50%.

    Premier Icon ton

    I am a rab fan…………cos it fits big un’s 😀

    got a generator pullover…..awesome
    and their marino/bamboo stuff is brilliant, I wear it all week without washing and it don’t stink…. 8)


    Got a Rab event jacket on sale from rock and run. Very nice so far!
    Arcteryx and Patagonia make up most of my gear. Arcteryx soft shell has been bombproof. Patagonia R series fleeces have seen me right in many situations from home to many trips/months at altitude in India. Patagonia great on repairs.
    Mountain equipment coop from Canada good. Like the look of the black diamond jackets.

    Premier Icon johnikgriff

    Had a Rab down coat for 5 years or so, big fan. But moved on to PHD a couple of years ago for its replacement, very impressed with the company. Currently order a load of custom stuff of them for my disabled son, nothing is to much trouble and it’s all made in the UK.


    Rab spark jacket 2013 leaked like a sieve whether cycling or walking. Apart from that it was great 😉


    Rab down jackets and Photon are excellent. Wore the Photon nearly everyday for 6 months on a big climbing biking trip up to 6000m altitude no complaints at all. Alpkit sleeping bags are good value as well. Bought some Sherpa gear at their main shop in Kathmandu and zip broke next day. However they replaced it and was fine. Met the headhoncho in the store and he was a very nice man. Lowe Alpine stuff is good and North Face has always been good for me as well. Podsac make good climbing sacks if that’s your thing.


    Used to enjoy lowe alpine clothes- only seem to see rucksacs from them in the shops near me these days though.

    I’m liking stuff from mountain equipment and paramo these days.

    I seem to receive TNF kit for pressies though, have to say not liking their fleece and goretex trainers much.

    Premier Icon trailhound

    Moda – interesting to hear that about the spark as was thinking of getting one this weekend, any thoughts on why it’s leaked – poor design/material or a one off perhaps?


    I’ve got a 10 year old Rab smock that’s not only still waterproof but when the seam tape dried up and gave up the ghost they re taped it free.

    Great kit.


    Sad to see the dilution of the Karrimor brand. Climbing in my youth you were a Karrimor or Berghaus man! And the original Helly Hansen versus Javelin fleeces! It was so simple in those days!

    I thought Scarpa were ok until last approach shoes. Dreadful quality with heels wearing out v quickly and lace eyes coming loose immediately. Back to slippy Sally’s for my next pair.


    Rab are [still] great. Years ago I gave them a call when I was trying to work out which down jacket to get.

    I rang the number of the swing ticket and explained to the switchboard that I had a question, and they said they’d put me through. Someone picked up and I rattled off the specifics of the planned trip, looking for some guidance.

    I got a very detailed answer and was advised to go with the cheaper option which surprised me. As the call drew to a close, it dawned on me that I wasn’t talking to some junior product manager, the deep tones and accent suggested someone more distinguished, so I asked who I was speaking to. There was a pause, and then the answer came back “I’m Mr Carrington….. Rab Carrington.”

    That has stuck with me ever since. As has the original jacket. It’s as warm, comfortable and useful as it’s ever been, but maybe a bit faded.

    The more recent stuff doesn’t always feel as good as some of the vintage gear I’ve got, but all of it has lasted well, and technically it’s still hard to beat IME.

    TNF remains pretty good too, despite my instinctive suspicion about durability of new stuff, it doesn’t go wrong. Although I do sometimes think the purity of design is being diluted by fashion now. And I miss the old lifetime warranty – there’s a fleece at the bottom of my wardrobe that had been back to them three times under the old scheme, I’m not sure how much, if any, is original but it’s still better now than when I bought it.


    Norrona gear is simply amazing.

    Premier Icon surroundedbyhills

    No mention for Paramo yet? They’re good at making lightweight sensible stuff, although the styling is not up there with Montane or Rab.


    Norrona gear is simply amazing.

    Quality gear but very expensive.


    +1 for Paramo

Viewing 34 posts - 1 through 34 (of 34 total)

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