Buffalo Special 6 - astonished

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MrEd

Full Member
Feb 18, 2010
1,962
871
Surrey/Sussex
www.thetimechamber.co.uk
I got one about 3 years ago as a warm layer for when not skiing on a Norway trip. Layered up because it was just a pottering around warm layer then. I had plans to use it I winter dog walking and hiking. I only used it as intended when hiking.

I also tried it out in very heavy rain on my local dog walk route. That time over bare skin. It was amazing. This was raining stair rods. I got the hood after that. You must get the hood too! Otherwise rain down the neck. That was the only route the for the rain to get in over an hour in that rain. Amazing as even my best wet weather gear would have been uncomfortable in that. Water wicks up the sleeve and sweat dampens you out with hardshells, even paramo too!

IMHO wear without base layer if working hard n in the cold. If less strenuous i do not think it's warm enough. I don't feel the cold often but I remember a cool wind feeling like it was blowing through the zip area.

I'm not a fan of wool base layers and I can only think they'd mess with the pile capillary effect. I've read that the only layers to potentially work is big wicking synthetics. Polypropylene for example as it wicks a few hundred times better than nylon or polyester. Wool doesn't wick so much at absorb and lock away water.

Wrt layering underneath, buffalo say bare skin but montane says base layer. Montane is warmer than buffalo s6 shirt. I say synthetic base layer unless you're exerting yourself or the weather is not good. Then it is better next to skin.

BTW it's comfortable when wet. In know a guy who did the Yorkshire Dale's the peaks twice in less yuan 24 hours in mid winter for fun! He did it with just a buffalo Mountain shirt. He was out in a bad blizzard and very cold temperatures including 2 or 3am when it was -10C inside the building which had been heated until about midnight. A very hard frost indeed. He was the only one not cold but he was fair shifting and hardly stopping.

Did I say get the hood? When cold it's very snug wearing it and it is good to stop rain down the neckl oh and make sure it's as close to your measured chest size too. It needs to be as close fitting as possible to wheel.

thnks that’s really useful, I will get the good to!

baselayers I have bamboo, and wool (merino) so will experiment with those - and look into polypropylene ones aswell :)

thanks

ed
 

Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,232
1,002
Lancashire
I'm a fan of PP base layers despite the odour issue. I have a helly hansen protocol top that's PP on the inside and wool, doesn't say merino just wool. It's a great cold weather base layer. pp wicks and keeps jmoisture away from skin for wool to absorb moisture. When I've worn wool on its own I found it gets wet and i cool down. PP wicks and stays dry.
 
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dean4442

Full Member
Nov 11, 2004
559
21
Wokingham UK
I absolutely love my Buffalo, it's kept me toasty and warm on many exercises and recently I wore it under my bike jacket. I found out that my all in one waterproof wasn't very waterproof any more, to the point that I was tipping water out of my sleeves. Despite that I was toasty and warm and didn't notice how wet I'd got despite doing 70mph in torrential rain until I got home.
 
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Jul 19, 2021
8
3
46
West Norfolk UK
Other brands are worth keeping an eye out for too. I’ve been using the Montane version out and about in on North Uist for the last week- not cold but very windy and wet sometimes. Have climbed the only hill on the island, spent time sat otter watching and fishing all in the same jacket- comfortable for all thanks to the side and neck venting.
 
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Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,232
1,002
Lancashire
The montane extreme version is generally considered better featured but a lot warmer. My s6 feels a bit cold even in windy late autumn at times and really only good when moving.

There was a shop in ambleside that stocked both brands once so in tried them both on. It was in a hot store so I got very hot in both but it was clear the montane was beefier and a lot warmer. Plus it's a bit cheaper with the hood included! It's bit a better design as smock and jacket versions. Or did back then.

Plus they used to do a version with epic impregnated outer layer with warmer pile for very cold use. Kind of waterproof without affecting breathability or performance. Might be a cotton or ventile such of things.

They are great used as and for the use designed for. Just like any other option you need to know how they work and what they do to decide if they're good for you. Just like a paramo type of system or other non mainstream system.
 
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Duggie Bravo

Nomad
Jul 27, 2013
494
109
Dewsbury
Sat watching my daughter at football training, will be digging either the RAB Ventura or Buffalo S6 out for next week, clear skies, means it’s dropping cold and I’m getting nesh in my old age.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 
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lostplanet

Full Member
Aug 18, 2005
1,977
171
51
Kent
Follow the washing instructions as close as possible, My special 6 got mixed up in a hot wash and dry and ruined the pile. I can still use it but its never felt the same since. Also if you go for a HH Lifa (polyprop) top buy bigger as they shrink a bit after washing (on right settings)
 
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Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,232
1,002
Lancashire
Lifa tops do shrink but they still stretch back due to being a very stretchy, open weave. I got a lifa top when I was 13 yo. I can still wear it as my base layer under my wetsuit when I last kayaker. That's despite it being medium and I'm probably large or xl now. It doesn't feel tight to me neither!
 

grizzlyj

New Member
Nov 10, 2016
4
2
uk
I'm on my second, so I have a grubby one and a going out one :) Plus a Belay jacket and an Active Lite shirt, and salopettes made to fit my little legs.
The Belay jacket by itself is, apart from going into town, a bit rubbish because it's too flappy and lets too much breeze in round the bottom. Unless you wear a harness?!? At the same size as the Special 6 you can layer it over the top. Similarly you can put the Active Lite, at one size down, under the Special 6. They are helpful with info if you ask, they said the shell of the Active Lite should be one size down because the insulation is thinner and that worked out.
Living in NW Scotland I wear the special 6 most days if it's about 12 deg C or below, just being or working outside. For hiking it may have to be colder but I don't do much of that. Since it's been used most days for maybe six years the fibrepile is much flatter than the new one which is lovely and toasty in comparison, so I have clothing to suit a wider variety of temps because the older 6 is a bit knackered.
If it's cold a merino goes under. Usually I wear a cotton tshirt cos it's convenient and what I wear inside despite knowing I shouldn't if you read the instructions.
I have spent all day, day after day, operating machinary in pouring winter rain with the salopettes, the 6, a merino neck warmer and top and a Sealskins goretex baseball cap under the Buffalo pile hood and been fine. If the Buffalo hasn't dried out the next day, or just after lunch more likely, putting it back on soaking wet is bad for maybe ten mins max then you're warm again.
It's not and is not meant to be waterproof, but I can be really quite soaked and still lovely and warm, moving or stationary. The wettist bits are under my chin down my chest and the side zips. The older one doesn't really like being reproofed so doesn't bead much anymore.
The Active Lite is a nice colour :) but for me covers a much narrower range of temps I can use it at. Better for hiking normally tho.
I would like the Buffalo Windtop to layer over the Special 6 to keep a bit of heat in and a bit of rain off but £100 for one layer of pertex is annoying. I did get the Curbar top cheap secondhand which fits under the 6 or over the Active Lite making a bit of difference, has a hood which is good and works well if working hard or as a summer spare layer, but is much more breathable they say than the Windtop so cooler.
I also have the Tekmax shirt for beers on the beach at Christmas, super toasty over wet swimming shorts :) I don't have the Yfronts!
 

lostplanet

Full Member
Aug 18, 2005
1,977
171
51
Kent
@grizzlyj
Iv'e got a Buffalo windshirt , a montane featherlite and a keela neutrino which is my fav. The Buff windshirt is a harder wearing more robust material than the others so may last longer and so works out roughly the same value maybe?. I'm looking at the arktis stowaway as I want ATACs AU , might be worth a punt for you too..

 
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Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,232
1,002
Lancashire
I had the buffalo windshield as a teenager. It was bought for cycling as a summer "waterproof ". Obviously isn't but cycling hard with that over the top of my t-shirt it was enough. Much later in my early 20s it still fitted and I used it as my "waterproof" when drying conservation volunteering. I once caught it on a thorn and put a big hole in it. A shrug and I carried on. After getting home at the end of the day I looked where the tear was. It disappeared! Self healing! Great kit but no longer fits. I found it earlier this year and trust it on. It's one size too small!

Now I know I'll not replace it because windshield are a lot cheaper and good enough from other brands.

Sizing is supposed to be very important , you need the s6 snug fit I read. I measured my chest and got the size matching my chest measurement. I was half an inch below the size I got. I regret that as I think it is too tight on me. Despite that it's a thick garment so you look a lot bigger wearing it I reckon.
 

Paul_B

Bushcrafter through and through
Jul 14, 2008
5,232
1,002
Lancashire
As much as in don't like thin elasticated wrists find the buffalo wrist design annoying. What I find annoying about it is the way the inside pile on the cuff curls it showing the pile to the weather. Heavy rain it gets wet and isn't nice IMHO. I have no idea if the arms are too short for me and the velcro closure is curling it up and out or my sleeves are too short. Whatever the case I dummy like it!
 

MikeeMiracle

Full Member
Aug 2, 2019
258
119
44
Northampton
As much as in don't like thin elasticated wrists find the buffalo wrist design annoying. What I find annoying about it is the way the inside pile on the cuff curls it showing the pile to the weather. Heavy rain it gets wet and isn't nice IMHO. I have no idea if the arms are too short for me and the velcro closure is curling it up and out or my sleeves are too short. Whatever the case I dummy like it!

I get that also, the pile on the hands twisting outwards.
 

Tiley

Full Member
Oct 19, 2006
2,179
248
57
Gloucestershire
It's good stuff - bulky but good at keeping you warm, no matter what. A friend of mine wore a Special 6 top, a Belay jacket and the salopettes when he topped out on Everest; he said he was perfectly warm, despite the sub-zero temperature and relentless, cutting wind. I have a pair of their pile mittens in my pack at all times for 'those moments when...' and, in winter, I always fling in my Belay jacket for the chillier stops on longer days out.
 

Herman30

Settler
Aug 30, 2015
927
618
55
Finland
As I understand it, this jacket should be something similar as the Buffalo if a thin windproof layer (like Arktis A192 Stowaway) is worn on top?


I have both the Arktis A192 and this bear jacket in the link
 

MrEd

Full Member
Feb 18, 2010
1,962
871
Surrey/Sussex
www.thetimechamber.co.uk
I think they may have changed the outside material on the S6 now, the web site is claiming its "Pertex® Quantum" whatever that means.
They still do a normal pertex version to, I looked at both, the quantum stuff has almost the appearance of mini rip stop, was fractionally less shiny but to me felt a bit stiffer.
I went for the normal type (not quantum) which felt slightly softer in the hand. Both looked good though.

I planned to use it this weekend in wales but it was 18c and sunny so it stayed in my bag lol
 

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