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Reviews > Clothing > Jackets > Integral Designs Rundle Jacket > Test Report by Patrick McNeilly

Integral Designs Rundle Jacket
Tested By Pat McNeilly

Initial Report: November 17, 2007
Field Report: January 26, 2008
Long-Term Report: March 14, 2008

Name: Pat McNeilly
Age: 45
Gender: Male
Height: 5í 8Ē (1.7 m)
Weight: 155 lb (70 kg)
Chest size: 40 in (102 cm)
Sleeve length: 32 in (81 cm)

Email address: mcne4752 at yahoo dot com.
City, State, Country: Gaithersburg, Maryland, USA

Backpacking Background:
I have been hiking for at least 20 years but backpacking for only the last four years.Most of my backpacking is done as overnight trips and occasional weekend and weeklong trips.My typical packweight is approximately 18 to 20 lb (8 to 9 kg) before food or water.Most of my backpacking is the three season variety in the mountains of Maryland, Virginia, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.In addition to backpacking, I also fish, hunt, and have been involved in disaster relief.As a result, some of my backpacking equipment gets used in a number of different venues.
Front view of Rundle Jacket
Product Information:

Product: Rundle Jacket
Manufacturer: Integral Designs
Year of Manufacture: 2007
Color: Black
Size: Medium
Weight (listed): 15.5 oz (439 g)
Weight (measured): 15.8 oz (448 g)
URL:http://www.integraldesigns.com/.
MSRP: $180.00 USD


Initial Report
Report Date: November 17, 2007

Product Description:
The Integral Designs Rundle Jacket is a light weight jacket insulated with a single layer of 4 oz (113 g) Primaloft sport material.The outer fabric of the jacket is constructed of 30 denier Pertex Microlight ripstop nylon, while the inner fabric is 30 denier taffeta microfiber nylon.The jacket is a solid black color with a 1.5 in (3 cm) high triangular Integral Designs logo located on the left chest region.The jacket has a 24 in (61 cm) black zipper with a 3 in (8 cm) zipper pull attached bearing the Integral Designs name.The front zipper is backed by a 1 in (2.5 cm) strip of fabric to prevent drafts.The jacket also has an insulated collar which measures 2.75 in (7 cm) high in the front and 3 in (8 cm) in the back.The jacketís front length measures 21.5 in (55 cm) from the base of the collar to the bottom of the jacket, while the back measures 26 in (66 cm).The Rundle Jacketís sleeve length measures 34 in (86 cm), as measured from the center of the neck to the end of the sleeve.The wrist openings and the bottom hem of the garment are trimmed with Lycra binding.The inside of the wrists also have a 1.5 in (3 cm) thumb loop bound with Lycra sewn which is used to prevent the sleeves from riding up in cold conditions.The jacket has two front pockets with 7 in (18 cm) zippers located on the side seams and 2 in (5 cm) from the bottom hem.The pockets measure approximately 7 in (18 cm) x 7 in (18 cm).The jacket has a single chest level internal pocket which measures approximately 7 in (18 cm) x 7 in (18 cm) and closes with a 6.5 in (16 cm) zipper.

Product Review:
The Integral Designs Rundle Jacket is a very basic garment with few frills.The quality of the materials and the construction are excellent.After a very thorough inspection, I do not see a single loose thread or any other defect anywhere on the jacket.In addition, all the zippers operate smoothly.The jacket appears to be just as it is described on the manufacturerís website.

When the Rundle Jacket arrived two things were immediately noticeable, the first was how light the jacket is.I was amazed that the jacket weighs as little as it does and wonder how there could be enough material to keep me warm.Well, I will find out if it does over the next few months.The second noticeable point is that the fabric is remarkably soft, particularly the taffeta inner lining.The Primaloft insulation also makes the garment feel as though it is filled with down giving the jacket a pillow-like quality.The taffeta also has a slippery feel while the Pertex Microlight is less so.

The fit of the jacket is just about perfect for me.I do not have any problems with it being too tight through the chest and I am able to freely move my arms without any binding.The sleeves are a bit long but this allows for use of the thumb loops without putting strain on the sleeves when my arms are bent or when reaching upward.There is not a tremendous amount of room for layering underneath the jacket.I am able to easily fit a baselayer plus a light weight fleece but a bulkier layer in place of the fleece feels a bit snug.Even so, I donít think I would want to go to a larger size.
Rundle thumb loops
The Lycra trim on the wrists and hem provides a firm but not too tight a closure.The hem keeps the jacket in place when I bend over and doesnít expose a large gap to the cold.The wrists are not so snug as to prevent me from wearing light weight gloves.I have not yet tried larger gloves but do not expect major issues.

The thumb loops at the wrist were not well described on the Integral Designs website.As noted above, the loops are bound with Lycra and easily allow me to slip my thumb through.When using the thumb loops, almost the entire back of the hand is covered.I have worn the Rundle Jacket with light weight gloves through the loops and have not has issues with the loops being too tight.I am interested to see how the thumb loops work with heavier gloves.

Inner pocketThe Rundle Jacket has three pockets.All the pockets are approximately the same size, close with zippers, and are lined with the 30 denier taffeta microfiber nylon fabric.The two external pockets are located on the jacketís side seams and are positioned vertically.These pockets are big enough to use as handwarmers or to store a pair of gloves but items much larger might be a problem.Since the pockets are lined with slick taffeta fabric, I am a bit nervous that items could slip out of the pockets if they are left unzipped.The inner pocket is located at chest level on the left side of the jacket.This pocketís zipper is placed vertically approximately 1 in (2.5 cm) in from the jacketís front zipper.The size of the inner pocket will allow storage of small items such as a map or energy bars.

The collar fits well around my neck when the jacket is fully zipped.The fabric backing the front zipper extends to the very top of the collar and prevents having the metal of the zipper come in contact with my chin when zipped.I notice that as I zip the jacket to about collarbone level the fabric backing the zipper is folded over and sometimes snags the zipper.This doesnít appear to cause damage to the fabric but requires that I take care when I fully zip the jacket.

Inside the jacket is a tag bearing the Integral Designs logo along with laundering instructions.The Rundle Jacket can be machine washed on gentle cycle with cold water.The manufacturer recommends that the jacket be tumble dried on low heat.The instructions specifically state not to drip dry the jacket.

Field Report:
Report Date: January 26, 2008†††

Field Information:
This product has received virtually daily use.I have been utilizing the Rundle Jacket for just about every activity that I have been involved with over the past two months, including walking the dog and running errands.These have also included six day hikes in the central Maryland or northern Virginia area which ranged from 4 to 8 miles (6 to 12 km).These hikes were on maintained trails at elevations of 300 to1350 ft (100 to 400 m).I encountered temperatures of 25 to 65 F (-4 to 18 C) on these hikes.On only one of these did I encounter any form of precipitation (in the form of rain).

I wore the Rundle Jacket on a weekend trip with my local Boy Scout troop to the George Washington National Forest in West Virginia.This involved car camping but did have some light day hiking involved of approximately 2 to 3 total miles (3 to 5 km) at elevations of 1100 to 2100 ft (300 to 600 m).The temperatures on this trip ranged from 4 to 35 F (-16 to 2 C) and the conditions involved snowy, icy trails.

The jacket was also worn on a weekend deer hunting trip I took in central Maryland where the temperatures ranged from 20 to 35 F (-7 to 2 C).This involved little in the way of hiking but did allow for assessment of the jacketís insulating properties during low activity.

Product Review:
At this point in the testing, I am very pleased with the Rundle Jacket.I feel that it provides quite a bit of warmth for the weight.I have been wearing the jacket constantly and feel that, with a fleece or sweater underneath, I am comfortable to about 30 F (-1 C) while not exerting myself.This is good in my opinion since I am typically quite sensitive to the cold.When the temperatures are colder than that, I have found that the Rundle Jacket makes a very nice insulating mid-layer.The smooth fabric (both inside and out) makes it easy to slip underneath or over other articles of clothing.

During hikes where I encountered temperatures of about 50F (10 C) or higher, I found that the Rundle Jacket is too warm to hike in.This was not something unexpected at those temperatures.I did have the chance to hike in the jacket in 10F (-12 C) weather and found that the jacket was the perfect thing with a baselayer and light fleece underneath.

One feature of the jacket that I am impressed with is how windproof the jacket feels.The fabric seems to do a great job of cutting the wind.I was very thankful for this when hiking in temperatures of 10F (-12 C) and the wind would kick up.I could really feel the cold where I had exposed skin or on my legs but my torso and arms felt just fine.The windproof fabric and warmth also makes the Rundle Jacket a good choice for a lightweight layer to slip on during a break from hiking.

During the course of the testing, I have not encountered much in the way of heavy rains.I did get an opportunity to wear the jacket in some light to moderate rain and found that the Pertex Microlight fabric kept me dry.I did not notice any soaking through of the material or leakage at the seams.The front zipper of the jacket is not waterproof but I have not seen evidence of water penetrating it at this point.

I have only had a couple of occasions where I felt that I wanted to use the thumb loops.They do provide additional warmth for the hands but I canít say that I really need them for most of the hiking I do.I have noticed a few times that when I wear the Rundle Jacket as an outer layer, I will get a draft on my arms from the thumb loops.This is not a major problem but it is something I notice from time to time.One last thing about the thumb loops is that I find it hard to fit the thumb of a bulky glove through the loop.Lightweight knit gloves are not a problem but larger gloves can be.

The external pockets seem to be in easy to access locations and are large enough to hold a variety of items such as gloves and small flashlights.The opening of the pocket actually seems to be slightly smaller than the rest of the pocket and prevents items from slipping out.So, my fears of losing items from these pockets were not warranted.One problem I have found with the pockets is that the zipper pulls are rather small and a bit difficult to grasp with gloves on.In addition, the position of the exterior pockets does not allow them to be accessed while wearing a pack with a hip belt.The interior chest pocket will easily hold sunglasses and other items of that size.I find that it is the pocket I use most for items other than my gloves since I can easily access it with my pack on.

Although I have not noticed any retention of odors with the material, I did wash the jacket once, according to the manufacturerís instructions.I have not seen any shifting of the insulation or any fraying or loosening of the seams after washing.The material remains as soft as before but I have not had opportunity to re-test its water resistance.

Compressed Rundle Jacket next to 1L water bottleThe front zipper tends to snag its backing just at the point where it reaches my neck.This isnít a major problem but is sometimes annoying when trying to fully zip the jacket.The jacketís fabric warms up quickly but it also cools down just as quickly.I find that the collar can sometimes be cold against the skin unless I wear a shirt with some type of collar.

Lastly, I wanted to comment on the compressibility of the Rundle Jacket.I find that I can compress the jacket to about 7x8x6 in (18x20x15 cm) but that would need to be in some sort of stuff sack.The jacket has the tendency to loft inside a pack and take up any available space.This may or may not be a problem, depending on the whether I have need of the extra space in my pack.If I do need the space, I typically bring the Rundle Jacket in a compression sack.I have not noticed any problems with compressing the jacket but I do not store the jacket in a stuff sack for any great length of time.

Long-Term Report
Report Date: March 14, 2008

Field Information:
Just as I mentioned in my Field Report, the Rundle Jacket has continued to get almost daily wear.The winter temperatures in Maryland are somewhat mild with typical daytime temperatures of 25 to 40 F (-4to 4 C) and this has been a go to jacket for me unless there have been colder conditions.Thus, it gets use while running errands, walking the dog, or just about anything else I have been doing during the test period.

I have also worn it on four separate day hikes since my last report.†† These hikes took place in either Maryland or northern Virginia and ranged anywhere from 4 to10 miles (6 to 16 km).I encountered temperatures of 25 to 50 F (-4 to 10 C) on these hikes.Most hikes were done in clear conditions but one hike in the Green Ridge State Forest in Maryland was done with light snow falling for at least part of the hike.I did have moderate to stiff winds on at least two of these hikes.

I brought the Rundle Jacket along as a warm-up layer for a number of trail runs and two orienteering events.These events were held in either central Maryland or northern Virginia.Weather conditions were generally typical for this area with temperatures ranging from 25 to 40 F (-4 to 4 C).I ran into moderately windy conditions during a number of these events but not much in terms of precipitation.

Product Review:
I have not had any major problems with the Rundle Jacket since my last report.The jacket has held up very well and looks almost as it did when it arrived.As far as I can tell, there has been no shifting of the insulation, even after being frequently stuffed into packs and compression sacks.I have not seen any problems with the integrity of the seams or wearing of the fabric. I will report that I did encounter some briars along one of the trails but the smooth fabric of the jacket seems to have prevented snagging.I thought I was going to end up with a small hole or possibly a pull in the fabric but that was not the case.

The Pertex Microlight fabric appears to have done a good job at keeping me dry.While hiking in the snow, the insulation did not appear to be wet.I encountered some fairly wet snow but I noticed that it did not appear to stick to the fabric.If snow did build up on the fabric, it was easily brushed off.

One of the things I am most impressed with about the Rundle Jacket is how well it performs in windy conditions.I hiked locally at Sugarloaf Mountain in Maryland on a day when the temperature hovered near 40 F (4 C) with some very stiff breezes.The trail was a constant up and down and I found myself frequently zipping and unzipping the jacket during the hike to regulate body temperature.I actually found this to work out well.Every time I was nearing a ridge, I would feel the wind and give a quick pull on the zipper and I was much more comfortable.If I left a ridge and warmed up, unzipping the jacket allowed for adequate ventilation.I have also found that the Rundle Jacket has made a great cold weather warm-up jacket after orienteering or trail runs because of the insulation and its ability to cut the wind.

The jacket is easy to clean and the outer fabric does not appear to easily pick up stains.I had a few episodes of either spilling food or drinks on the jacket, or getting it muddy during a hike.Before sending it to the washing machine, I found that simply wipping the fabric with plain water cleaned it up right away.I spilled ketchup on the jacket at one point and expected some sort of stain but I can see no remnant of it.

As I noted in my Field Report, I still have some problems with snagging of the front zipper if I try to pull it all the way up.Also, I continue to wish for larger zipper pulls on the pockets.It can be difficult to open the external pockets because the zipper pulls are too small.

Summary:
The Integral Designs Rundle Jacket is a lightweight, water resistant jacket that works well as either an outer garment during mildly cold conditions, but also as an insulating layer beneath other clothing when it is really cold.The outer Pertex Microlight fabric resists light to moderate and snow rain well.The Rundle Jacketís windproof fabric performs well in breezy conditions.The jacketís pockets can hold a variety of small items but the position of the external pockets does not allow for access while wearing a hip belt.The jacketís fabric can cool down quickly which can occasionally feel cool against the skin.

Things I like:
1. Light weight
2. Versatility (easily fits under or over other garments)
3. Water resistance
4.
Windproof

Things I donít like:
1. Snagging of the front zipper
2. Small zipper pulls on pockets

This concludes my testing of the Integral Designs Rundle Jacket.I would like to thank Integral Designs and BackpackGearTest.org for the opportunity to test this item.



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