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Reviews > Clothing > Underwear > 180s QUANTUM DRY BASE LAYER LS CREW > Owner Review by Kathleen Waters

180s QUANTUM DRY BASE LAYER LS CREW
BY KATHLEEN WATERS
OWNER REVIEW
March 06, 2009

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Kathleen Waters
EMAIL: TheMiddleSister@usaring.com
AGE: 58
LOCATION: White Lake, Michigan USA
GENDER: F
HEIGHT: 5' 4" (1.63 m)
WEIGHT: 125 lb (56.70 kg)

I started hiking in 1998 after an eye-opening climb up Hahn's Peak in Colorado. Hooked, I return to Colorado often. I've hiked/snowshoed glaciers, rain forests, mountains and deserts in domestic and exotic locations, including Iceland, Costa Rica, Slovenia and Death Valley. At home, I plan for 2-3 hikes of 6-8 mi (10-13 km) weekly and one weekend hike monthly. Weekday hikes take place in Pontiac Lake Recreation Area, a mixture of heavily-wooded moderate hills and flat terrain. Weekend hike locations vary. My hiking style is comfortable, aiming for lightweight. Current pack averages 25 lb (11 kg) including food and water

PRODUCT INFORMATION

Manufacturer: 180s
Year of Manufacture: 2008
Manufacturer's Website: http://www.180s.com
MSRP: US$50.00
Listed Weight: N/A
Measured Weight: 5.5 oz (156 g)
Sizes Available: S, M, L, XL
Size Tested: Medium
Colors Available: Black and White
Color Tested: White

Other details: (from 180s website)

Shell (61% Nylon, 39% Polypropylene)
Made in Israel
Crew
Picture Courtesy of 180s

PRODUCT DESCRIPTION

As seen in the picture above, the 180s Quantum Dry Base Layer Long Sleeve Crew is a normal looking white, long sleeve top. The raglan sleeves, underarm and crew collar seams are all top-stitched with a contrasting thread to add a little color and pizzazz to the shirt. The cuffs and hem are stitched in white. A discreet 180s logo is screen-printed on the left chest as well as on the inside hem of the right sleeve.

There is a tagless "tag" at the back neckline of the crew as well as a traditional cloth tag with washing instructions.

Where the 180s Quantum Dry Base Layer's looks diverge from the ordinary is in the composition of the shell materials.

The knitted weave varies in stitch design and thickness throughout the shirt based on the desired function.

Under the arms and down the middle of the back there is a looser knit (than the main body of the crew) to provide ventilation. This "zone" upon close inspection reveals a rougher-looking fabric.

Then, there is an embedded ribbed knit (looks like raised stripes) which covers the chest, arms and kidney areas. According to 180s this "zone" provides additional support and stretch.

Lastly, there are tightly knit 4.5" (11 cm) stockinette stitch cuffs on the sleeves to keep the sleeves in place and from riding up.

Upper Back of 180s Crew
Upper Mid Back
Back Kidney Area of 180s Crew
Back/Kidney Area
Underarm of 180s Crew
Underarm
Sleeve of 180s Crew
Sleeve/Cuff

FIELD CONDITIONS AND USE

Since I acquired the 180s Quantum Dry Base Layer Crew, I have worn it a total of 15 times. Half of that time was casual wear at work either solo or under a casual shirt or sweater. Temperatures generally were between 65 F and 70 F (18-21 C).

The other half of my wearing time was time spent on the trail, hiking and backpacking as detailed below.

February 6-7: At night, the trail at the Tennessee Pass was a very pleasant 28 F (-2 C) when we started snowshoeing and a still pleasant 14 F (-10 C) when we stopped. Clear skies, little or no humidity and no wind at all made it a gorgeous trek. We started at an elevation of 10,500 ft (3200 m) and had a slight but constant elevation gain to 10,800 ft (3292 m). The trail was hard-packed snow and meandered through a tall growth pine forest.
180s Crew
Ridgway State Park in Colorado
The next day, we were snowshoeing on the same trails, but it was sunny and 32 F (0 C). Still no wind and very little humidity were present.

February 20-21: Ridgway State Park and Reservoir, including the Uncompahgre River trails. Elevation started at 6880 ft (2097 m) and rose to 7000 ft (2134 m). Temperatures were from a low of 33 F (0.6 C) at night to 54 F (12 C) in the bright afternoon sunshine. There was, at most, just a light occasional breeze. Terrain varied from sandy beach shore to medium-size rocks to very large rocks at the reservoir's edge, then changed to dry hard-packed dirt to mud to icy snow patches in the offshore higher-treed sections of the trail. The mileage for the entire east side trail was 7.5 mi (12 km).

March 3-5: Hike and camp in the Bureau of Land Management properties in the Royal Gorge area of Colorado (Cooper Mountain range, included). Elevation started at 5400 ft (1600 m) and gained about 200 ft (61 m). Daytime temperatures were a pleasant 50 to 67 F (10 to 19 C) and nighttime temperatures hovered from 18 to 34 F (-8 to 1 C) from Tuesday to Thursday respectively. A pretty steady wind of 10 to 15 mph (16 to 24 kph) was present most of Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Wind gusts were plentiful and blew as high as 35 mph (56 kph). The terrain was very dry. We were (and still are) under "red flag" warnings for forest fires. Vegetation was sparse juniper and pinon pine eking out a barren existence on powdery dirt to granite slabs. Desolate, but very beautiful against the brilliant blue sky!

The crew fits me just the way I like a base layer to fit. It is not so tight as to constrict but it is form-fitting enough to hug my body. I can easily wear other base layers over the crew and still move about freely. The fit is great for sleeping in, too. I don't get tangled in excess fabric but still can squirm around.

The sleeve length is just slightly over my wrists. I'm not a fan of sleeves I can practically pull over my finger tips. That causes excess bulk. Conversely, I don't like too-short sleeves which leave my wrists exposed, particularly in cold weather.

What few seams the crew has are not even noticeable even under a shifting backpack. And the neckline with its cloth tag doesn't irritate. In fact, once I pull the crew down and tuck it into my pants, I totally forget I have it on.

The best fit feature of the crew is the generous length of the crew. It rests a good 6 in (15 cm) below my waist, covering my hips and most of my bottom. Once tucked into my pants, the crew stays put, too. Nice!

The inside of the crew is very soft and the polypropylene face provides a smooth, next-to-skin feel. I have found it to be an excellent insulating layer in the cold. I have had very good experiences wearing the crew as my first layer with an additional base layer (hoodie), a light fleece and a windproof jacket or with one of the mid layers removed. This depended on the weather, of course, and what my activity level was. Mostly, I would start out with all four layers and then strip the fleece off first, then the hoodie as I heated up. When hiking at Ridgway State Park, I actually ended up with just the crew on as the temps rose above 50 F (10 C).

Sweating is something I manage to do even in the coldest weather when snowshoeing or gaining elevation rapidly. Wearing the crew, I found I was not having the soaked-shirt-syndrome underneath my pack. I don't mean to say the crew wasn't wet, it was. But the wicking worked so well, I was not aware of being wet. Feeling the inside of the crew with my hand, the fabric felt cool, but dry. Touching the outside of the crew was a different story, the fabric was definitely wet! Again, nice!

180s claims the fabric of the crew is able to both wick sweat (I can testify to that from my experiences) and repel water. Unfortunately, I have not had temperatures where I could comfortably strip down to only the crew to test its reaction to precipitation - only snow, no rain. However, I did splash water onto the outside of the crew while I was wearing it casually. To my surprise, even though I could clearly see darker spots indicating wetness on the outside of the crew, I could not see or feel wetness on the inside of the crew. Touching the outside of the crew confirmed the crew was indeed wet. But most importantly, I was not!

Unlike a lot of my tops I have, as of yet the 180s crew has not shown any signs of pilling or fabric weakening from the friction caused by the straps and hipbelt of my pack.

The washing instructions provided by the manufacturer are: "Wash separately in warm water, gentle cycle. Do not use bleach or fabric softener. Do not iron. Do not dry clean. Tumble Dry." The cryptic international symbols for care are also printed with the text in French and English on the neck label. I'm not usually so oblivious to manufacturers' care instructions, but somehow I just totally missed the 180s'.

After wearing the crew a total of 7 days and three nights on the trail, I finally broke down and threw the shirt in the wash. Since, currently, I am using commercial washers and dryers; I knew I would be air-drying the crew. What I didn't plan on was forgetting the shirt was in the "white wash" and throwing bleach into the washer with the shirt. I used cold water rather than the recommended "warm" and there is no such thing in a commercial washer as "gentle"! Even with such rough treatment, the crew came out none the worse for it. It looks just as it did when I opened the package, actually better since air-drying (more like wind-drying) shook out all the wrinkles. I will certainly try to be more diligent in keeping the shirt away from bleach in the future though.

THINGS I LIKE

1.) Fits close to my body without being overly constrictive.
2.) Keeps me warmer when worn as a base layer, but cool when worn solo.
3.) Wicks sweat away from my body so I feel dry even when the shirt is not.

THINGS I DON'T LIKE

1.) Absolutely nothing!

SUMMARY

My experiences with the Quantum Dry Base Layer Crew from 180s have all been positive and I'm very happy to have the shirt in my gear closet. It is very comfortable and versatile, going from a base layer to a solo top to a sleep top, seamlessly. I have been warm when I needed to be and sweat has never been a problem due to the excellent wicking. The quality is excellent and I don't see any undue wear from backpack straps as of yet. I'm sure to continue to wear this shirt for a long time to come.

Thank you to 180s for introducing me to the Quantum Dry Base Layer Crew!

Kathleen (Kathy) Waters

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1. Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.

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