I know Latok was the for runner to LA, but the Latok Mountain Cap did NOT have a wired peak - hence why I said what I did
OM is running a story about the trade show where orders are taken from the buyers of shops. Buyers place orders about 6 months in advance. At this trade show they were showing the new product for autumn/ winter 13/14. It has not yet been made; hence why you can't read about it on LA's site. You won't be able to buy it until the summer is over. OM are just informing you about what is coming up. A good example of how this is useful is the new Goretex story (Pro); when people know a new better-performing type of Goretex is becoming available in the near future, some people will choose to put off buying a new Goretex jacket until it is made from the newer material. I suspect you will want OM to continue reporting this news... LA are keen to spread the word that their clothing is coming back (it has all but disappeared from the current retailers); I know people who are looking forward to this
A couple of things. the LA Mountain Cap was wired after Calange produced theirs (but Calange were 'inspired' by the Latok Cap), which coincided with Ange from Calange moving to LA.
IMHO LA went wrong when the Asolo ownership tried to get it to produce gear using the same materials as everyone else. The Aleutian fleece & Triplepoint were good examples of this: they helped progress the market, beacuse they were different
TPC was always hydrophilic, as opposed to micro-porous; the new TP (note no TPC labelling) has 3 grades (as someone has already pointed out - the first two are micro-porous); the last one is still TP C - which is hydrophilic.
It is worth paying attention to how much Sympatex have improved not only their performance, but also now have a target of Target Carbon Zero: getting CFC's out of the DWR (everyone has acknowledged that Greenpeace's Detox campaign against C8 is something they are in agreement with). CFC's are still used as they repel dirt/ oils better than almost any other finish.
Please do launder the shells that you use - but (old one this) use a soap solution & not a detergent. Nikwax Techwash is as good as anything on the market. A second rinse is also advised. Detergents leave a water-attracting layer on your DWRs which does defeat their performance!
LA's new range is great: some keen price points; some original technology; some great design. As we all know we are all different (shapes/ perspiration rates) so having a greater variety of product on the market will be better for the range of users...
To cover some points brought up (having had a good chat with the Nikwax scientists): a pretreatment will VERY slightly reduce the performance (but with a greater down/ feather ratio this will not noticed - in fact, with the development of higher loft in recent years: the opposite); some brands (ME/ Crux spring to mind) are not using the technology as they rightly point out that top-of-the-mountain users will be carrying waterproof shells anyway, so there is not such a need for this added performance. The main thing is to realise that a hydrophobic treatment will GREATLY reduce the drying time of wet down, plus stop the insulation loosing all its thermal properties so quickly. The positive news for the Rab/ Nikwax link up is that the treatment is as eco-friendly as you can get. The other area of interest in down-for-wet-wear is Patagonia's investment into a plasma coating company (I imagine it will do things like what P2i.com does) - at the recent ISPO trade show there was no one on the Patagonia stand who could chat about this technology (they didn't have this product on show); shame as I am finding it very hard to comprehend how coating down this way will be either cheap or efficient (putting down into a vacuum seems like a problem to me) - but then, that is why I wanted to chat to them...
Your point was not about the overall carbon footprint; but others had made the request about UK manufacturing - I still stand by what I say about Far East manufacture: it is better for all concerned IMHO (as long as you want price to be an influencing factor). The QC (plus H&S) that I have seen out there exceeds what I have seen in the UK for clothing manufacture. The brands I work with have standards that exceed what the EU/ Greenpeace/ CSR demands are
The 3% is not in addition - if the materials were shipped here for local manufacture, the overall carbon footprint would be very similar, as now most of the components are manufactured out there
I have made the mistake of tyrying to answer a whole range of points with a single posting, rather than individually addressing each poster that I can add information to - but then I only have so much time
My trainers of choice are New Balance - work that one out (it is all about the fit)!
Just want to highlight two things not covered by your article than will give more faith
a) Peter Lumley of Outdoor Trade & Industry (trade press) has been running with the Dirty Laundry (name of the Greenpeace report) story since February issue last year
b) the trade is waiting for the European Outdoor Group's Sustainability Working party to respond on behalf of the industry. As one of the few Brits on the working group we are doing things, but it takes time (commissioning new research to check the facts - not just relying on Greenpeace's word for it), especially when we are spread out throughout Europe in different languages. We also work closely with the North Americans
I know that this is not an answer for those that want immediate action - but Greenpeace are happy at the EOG progress; at a recent meeting they were much more like friends than enemies...
We are working with them towards their aim of having no additional toxins added to the water resource by 2020 as detailed in the Detox report
When there is something to tell I hope that Vanessa & Mathias will furnish you with details. You can always find me if you want the boring footwork stuff!