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Auteur Sujet: MUFFLON JIM jacket -- 100% fulled merino wool -- [DM Review]  (Lu 12765 fois)

05 mai 2010 à 09:19:41
Lu 12765 fois


MUFFLON JIM jacket, made of W100

Manufacturer's page: MUFFLON.LU -

According to the manufacturer
The Mufflon Jim is a men's jacket made from woven and fulled merino wool (complying with the German Öko-Tex norm that ascertains the absence of any harmful chemicals in the wool's manufacturing process). The Jim jacket is designed for three season use. It offers a waisted cut, two zipped outer pockets and two inner pockets, a two-way zip and a hem cord. Mufflon recommends to use it as a mid-layer, for minimum temperatures of 10°C to 15°C.

Dry weight : 680 grams for size M, 780 grams for size XL.

The tester : 27 years old, living in north-east Scotland, I live and work in town but any reason is good to go out and pursue quietness. For instance one or two days hikes, rock climbing, and (most of all) having naps while gazing at mountainous or coastal landscapes.
I've been wearing the Mufflon Jim every day for the past three weeks, during all these activities as well as for my urban life, with temperatures ranging from 0°C to 17°C, on great sunny days and miserable rainy evenings.

At use

The material is the specificity that attracted me to Mufflon's products. Wool in general offers a pleasant rusticity, not really needing any care, not getting easily smelly, rather insensitive to fire, able to absorb up to 40% of water before feeling damp and usually aging well while retaining its performance. However pure wool is pricier than competing synthetics, is not very hard-wearing, dries more slowly, and can be of variable quality.

Merino wool is noticeable for its very thin fibers that offer a good warmth to thickness ratio, and if my skin was any sensitive I'd also talk about its well tolerated smoothness.

W100 is a rather thin fabric but features a denser weave than most knitwear, and is less elastic but more "covering" than the latter since there's no mesh with holes all over it. It is foreseeably less likely to rip. It also grants a certain amount of wind resistance. It does not exempt from using a windproof garment on top of it, but the insulation is less prone to losing its warmth in moving air than a synthetic fleece or a knitted jumper of similar thickness.
Without any wind and with the fabric being dry, I'd compare the insulating properties to those of a rather thin fleece, say a bit more than a "Polartec 100" --to talk about a material that everybody has already worn. I find it comfortable for temperatures ranging from 5°C to 15°C without sun, for limited physical activity (like a quiet walk). If I bustle about too much I sweat, and the W100 "breathes" rather poorly. But this comfort range may vary greatly from one person to another, and tastes, colours and temperatures are not something to be argued about.

Of course I've stood in the rain with the Jim jacket, after all Scotland owns a reputation it has to stand up to. Pounding rain is well coped with for ten to twenty minutes, leaving me warm and dry inside. Obviously since there's no hood water eventually streams down my neck towards my back, but if my urban life was less extreme I'd wear a hat or carry an umbrella and the matter would be closed. When exposed to rain the W100 fabric first beads off the droplets. Quickly after the wool absorbs the water but it takes a good half-hour of driving rain to feel unpleasantly soaked.
From there on however, drying the jacket takes a long time. Several hours indoors.
But if rain is less aggressive, the densely woven merino wool brilliantly deals with it. The jacket very pleasantly surprised me by keeping me comfortable for a whole day of on-and-off drizzle, without any windproof over it. I just had a woolen hat. The Mufflon Jim is no rain garment, but it knows how to live with it. Much better so than a fleece that wets through very soon although it dries quickly, and also much better than a usual knitted woolen jumper.

Obviously W100 is poorly compressible according to modern standards. Yet thanks to its thinness, the Mufflon Jim jacket still packs down into a smaller daypack without depriving the bag too much of room for more vital resources like picnic. And if poor compressibility is a drawback when the cloth is bagged up, it turns into a strength as soon as you slip into the jacket.

Cut and accessories

The cut around the torso is well fitted, pleasant and thermally efficient. --see footnote for sizing-- Noticeably Mufflon has chosen to give the jacket a straight horizontal cut around the lower hem, as opposed to the scooping tail that you find on many other higher end clothes. The fabric is just stretchable enough to offer a perfect freedom of movement. I have worn this jacket on a few rock-climbing evenings upon the seashore cliffs, under a windproof smock, and the jacket managed to remain completely chafe-free. An excellent point.
The designer did not opt for a "modern" sewing pattern that would have avoided seams across the shoulders and on rubbing areas. On the contrary, fat folded seams run along the whole width of the shoulders and around the arm-pits. The most sensitive users might feel sore when wearing a backpack, but honestly I did not notice any discomfort there.

The sleeves are unfortunately quite loose and do not provide anything to tighten up the wrists. Whenever a fresh breeze rises it quickly finds its way up to the forearms, thus giving a bit the feeling of wearing short sleeves. Apart of that, the sleeves are supple and elastic enough to be conveniently worn rolled up on warmer days and not slide down.

The collar is coming up a bit but is way too loose to be efficient. It does not give any added warmth.

The outer pockets are most of all hand-warmers, and work well as such. They feature zips that allow to securely carry smaller objects ; the biggest --and most precious-- item I've put in there was a 200 grams jar of Nutella, that was making the pocket look pregnant. The inner pockets cannot be zipped up, but they allow to carry valuable objects discreetly close to the body. And since all good things come at a price, all these pockets are right in the way of a backpack belt, making themselves unusable when hiking.


Am I pleased with this jacket ? Yes ! Admittedly you can easily point out a few flaws. I would not advise the Mufflon Jim jacket as mid-layer of choice for hiking, and more so on mountains, in particular because of its weight and bulk, of its lack of "breathability", of the time it takes to dry, and for some people because of the massive seams across the shoulders and of the pockets made unusable by a backpack.

Yet it is a good piece of clothing that I happily grab before slipping into my shoes to get out of home. One just needs to know that it will perform best :

- in town, where weather exposure is limited to time intervals of a few dozen minutes at most, separated by times when the jacket can dry up (or the wearer warm up if the wind tickled him too much). Its inconspicuous looks and the inner pockets are two assets to live in harmony with the social jungle.

- in the woods, where wind is usually limited, where silence is welcome, where you may want to warm up next to a bonfire and more rustic equipment breathes out the nice scent of simplicity.

- traveling, on holidays, on those tramping tours when you hitchhike and sleep rough in front of a train station one day, and take a walk on the next day before spending the evening in some exotic town center and the night in a youth hostel... when the jacket won't pick up any bad smells, when you have a town jacket  that can deal with the outdoors and vice versa.


About the sizes

An odd 1m86 tall and with about 107 cm breast circumference, Mufflon's size-chart recommends a size XL for me. The first jacket I received was therefore extra-large... in front of my belly button. The volume in front of my stomach offered provisions for the decades to come, but the garment was loose and thermally disastrous.
Mufflon then recommended a size M according to a picture of me wearing the jacket and sent the right garment, though very slightly too short, worn for this test. (I do never wear a size M in any other make, generally L to XL).
After this experience, I'd easily advise to pick the next size below your usual size.
« Modifié: 19 août 2011 à 08:36:55 par Karto »


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