The latest developments in materials allow the British company Rab to produce very light sleeping bags and clothing, as well as the most waterproof and breathable camping equipment..
In 2012, Rab presented the company’s best collection of sleeping bags. This is not just a textile novelty. It is a symbiosis of scientific research, technical developments and the best materials that exist at the moment. One of the main key elements of a sleeping bag’s superior performance is the height of the partition wall between the bag’s chambers. Partitions of different heights allow you to proportionally distribute the volume of the filler in the sleeping bag and as a result, this allows you to reduce the weight of the bag and collect it in a bag more compactly.
Another critical element of sleeping bag performance is differential cutting. That is, the difference in the size of the inner tissue and the outer. It also allows you to significantly lighten the luggage of the tourist, without leaving an imprint on the quality of the equipment. A sleeping bag cut in this way is much more convenient and compact in a bag, taking up less space in a backpack. The baffle offset to create a trapezoidal chamber was invented to reduce the occurrence of so-called cold spots in the sleeping bag. Different models have different offset angles, which is verified experimentally for the weight of the equipment.
The weight of the sleeping bag depends on the insulation. Different insulation and different weights are needed for different climatic conditions. Some bags should be comfortable at minus 50 degrees Celsius, while others are used at plus 15 degrees. The first bag will weigh 1200 grams and the second 100 grams. The filler is not evenly distributed over the bag, but depending on its parts. For example, it is smaller on the chest than on the back. This increases productivity at the expense of ergonomics and functionality.
Sleeping bags are divided into several types according to their shape. Mummy-shaped bags weigh between 800 and 1200 grams. This form is designed for use in polar conditions, at high altitude and in cold mountains. The chambers are located at the vital organs (torso) and limbs (legs) to maintain maximum warmth. The cone-shaped mummy sacks weigh between 100 and 600 grams. They are best used in light and fast hikes in the mountains. The wide shape of a rectangular mummy weighs between 500 and 900 grams. These bags are designed for general mountain hiking and general outdoor sleeping. The rectangular shape weighs from 150 to 500 grams and allows you to sleep in a relaxed position on the street.
In terms of materials, Pertex technologies are used, which allow the nylon threads to create a soft, windproof, downproof, quick-drying and lightweight fabric. For the most extreme situations, special series of sleeping bags have been created: Expedition (polar hikes), Andes and Climbing (climbing the highest peaks).
It is the first technology to deliver the highest levels of comfort and protection with a soft shell. The material removes moisture and excess heat from clothing, while not being blown by the wind. This maintains a comfortable microclimate inside the clothes for any type of physical activity and different weather conditions. The inner layer effectively wicks moisture away from the skin and «pulls» moisture out of the fabric, where it dries quickly. The outer layer resists wind, rain and snow, which is very important for outdoor sports, including in bad weather.
Vapour-Rise is multi-layered to quickly wick away moisture and retain body heat in extreme mountain or polar conditions. The material combines two types of threads with different properties. On the inside, the threads are large, on the outside — thinner. According to the laws of capillary action, moisture moves from large threads to smaller ones. The outer fibers have a relatively large surface area which causes moisture to evaporate quickly.
Waterproof Shell Fabric
Rab waterproof jackets are designed for the most extreme conditions in the world and have been tried and tested in some of the harshest terrains and conditions. The Rab uses Pertex technology which offers a very lightweight waterproof protection that is ideal for alpine climbers, runners and anyone who needs the lightest of clothing. Water resistance is achieved in absolutely everything, including the zipper.
Synthetic insulation (Synthetic Insulation)
Synthetic insulation is made using poly-fiber. These fibers do the same job as natural down feathers — they keep you warm. But unlike feathers, products with synthetic fibers are more water resistant and able to retain heat even when wet. Rab utilizes Primaloft’s proprietary insulation technologies, pairing them with Pertex outer fabrics to create the lightest and most durable insulation option.
PrimaLoft Sport technology is the perfect combination of quality insulation and value. It uses ultra-fine fibers to help form waterproof structures. Pertex Microlight offers some of the softest and lightest fabrics available to prevent excessive heat loss through the fabric. The fabric is made from 33dtex microfiber in Switzerland by Ron Poulenc. Pertex Kvant material is the lightest. Its square meter weighs only 30g thanks to Dupont’s 22dtex yarn. It is used in the shell of the jacket and withstands active wear. Due to the dense weave, the material is downproof and can be used in sleeping bags.
The lightest jacket from Rab is the Ksenon series, weighing less than 25g/m2. The ultra fine fibers of the fabric are specially treated and combined into a soft and lightweight insulating core. It is 25-50% lighter than other jackets, which is important for reducing the weight of a tourist backpack.
Natural insulation (Down Insulation)
Rab started making down jackets 30 years ago. Since then, many advanced technologies for the manufacture of insulation have been created and tested. Only high quality inner insulation is now used in combination with Pertex branded fabrics, which ensures the manufacture of insulation that satisfies all users in different conditions.
Thermal underwear should be especially comfortable, because it directly touches the skin. It also needs to be warm. For the base layer of clothing, Rab uses both synthetic fabrics and merino wool-based fabrics. The MeCo base layer contains 65% Australian Merino wool and 35% Cocona recycled polyester. The two strands are closely woven to create a high performance fabric that offers all the natural benefits of Merino wool: warmth, softness and naturalness, but with the added performance of Cocona technology. Clothing made from this material dries 5 times faster. The fabric is easy to care for and has minimal shrinkage after washing.
MeCo thermal underwear is ideal for all active sports. They «breathe» in warm weather and warm well in a sharp drop in temperature. This outfit is perfect for multi-day trips to the mountains. The merino wool used is 100% organic. It is surprisingly warm and has excellent thermal conductivity. However, wool takes a long time to dry. Therefore, 35% recycled polyester fiber has been added to the clothes. This fabric is made using natural technologies. It is obtained from coconut shells and other natural materials.
Cocona technology accelerates evaporation, absorbs odors. Aeon fabrics are used in Aeon Tee series products. It is 100% polyester. It is very soft, lightweight and dries quickly and also has UV protection.
Rab Softshell technology aims to bridge the gap between traditional fleece and waterproofing. The Fusion jacket and trousers are just the fusion of two exclusive technologies: Polartec and NeoShell. It is a waterproof fabric, breathable, lightweight yet double that combines protection and comfort. Polartec and Neo Shell are the first fabric to combine the superior breathability and ventilation of a soft shell with the water resistance of a hard shell. The athlete remains dry in clothes, regardless of weather conditions and stress levels.
The Baltoro range utilizes Polartec’s Power Shield technology in fabrics with varying levels of insulation to create an easily adaptable layer for different conditions. These next-generation fabrics go beyond the traditional two-layer system. They have a smooth, dense surface, resistant to abrasion, but soft. And inside it is a polyester velor air trap that provides warmth.
Polartec Power Shield replaces traditional fleece, is lighter and is ideal for skiing, snowboarding, climbing and hiking. Fabrics stretch well for freedom of movement. It is used in jackets, trousers, bibs, hats and gloves. Polartec manufactures over 200 fabrics. The classic is a two-layer velor with an air gap. There are very warm materials, stretching in all four directions, wind-resistant, especially durable, breathable, waterproof membranes.
Sawtooth fabric is a new, highly breathable, light and soft material with good water repellency. This fabric is made up of 90% nylon and 10% spandex making it stretchy and durable. Excellent breathability makes Sawtooth suitable for hiking in warm conditions and even on cooler days on the mountain as an extra layer.
Pertex has an enviable reputation for designing and manufacturing the most innovative and technically advanced fabrics for the widest range of consumers. Pertex fabrics are made up of microdenier nylon threads that make the fabric soft, windproof, downproof, quick-drying and lightweight. Rab was the first company to work exclusively with Pertex.