His and Hers: Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie Reviewed

by October 28, 2011 10/28/11
Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

When Triple Aught Design presented Kelly and I with the opportunity to review their brand new Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie, we jumped at the chance. I’d been trying to get Kelly to check out TAD for quite some time, ever since they first released their women’s apparel line.

I’ve been a customer of TAD for a long time, even before starting ITS Tactical. In my opinion, they’re one of the top tactical apparel companies out there today and I’ve always respected their company values and dedication to customer service. I’m also excited that everything I’ve purchased from them lately, in addition to these two garments we’re reviewing today, are made in the USA.

It seems like almost every apparel item you pick up on a shelf today is made overseas. It’s discouraging, but the more I’ve been learning about apparel manufacturing, the more I understand the trials and tribulations of getting apparel made in the US today. Something refreshing on TAD’s Website is that they tell you exactly where every apparel item is made under the specs section.

Layering

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Something we haven’t addressed much on ITS, that we will soon, is layering. Layering is extremely important as not only seasons change, but as your outdoor adventures continue to take you into changing environments. What comprises a true layer system is three layers that manage your body’s heating and cooling system. A base layer, mid-layer and outer layer are all important parts of this system and can include an optional wind shirt as well.

While I’ll keep this layer system explanation short, it’s important to have a grasp of this when we’re talking about the “flexible mid-layer” of the Ranger and Valkyrie Hoodies.

A base layer is worn next to your skin and wicks moisture away from your body. You don’t want cotton here or anywhere for that matter. Remember “Cotton is Rotten.” A good base layer should keep you dry. The mid-layer’s job is to keep you insulated and warm, thus trapping air is the objective here. You want a certain amount of breathability here though too, because that moisture that’s being wicked away from your base layer still needs a way to continue to escape. The outer layer should protect you from wind and rain and is often called a hardshell. While providing wind and water resistance, this layer must too be breathable. That moisture still has to find a way out.

Now that you have a basic understanding of layering, let’s get into the hoodies.

Ranger and Valkyrie Mid-Layer Hoodies

Advertised as a flexible mid-layers, the Ranger and Valkyrie Hoodies utilize Polartec Wind Pro fleece that’s been treated with DWR (durable water repellent). Maintaining the comfort of traditional fleece, the DWR-treated Polartec Wind Pro provides up to four times as much wind resistance than traditional fleece. Couple that with being able to repel rain & snow and being able to maintain 85% of traditional fleece breathability.

Polartec Wind Pro Fleece is also marketed as retaining a pill-free performance and insulating ability through repeated use and laundering. It’s important to note that is can also be washed in a standard washing machine.

While definitely not the smallest or lightest weight mid-layers available, what truly makes these hoodies appealing is the versatility. Being able to wear them both as a true mid-layer, or even an outer layer and not have to worry about rain and snow, is a definite plus.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Rain truly does bead up on the DWR surface, but in a torrential downpour you’d be better off with a hardshell. However, the Wind Pro won’t soak through like cotton will in the rain and takes a lot to become saturated. Even when it does, it can be wrung out and still maintain a degree of insulation.

Despite not being the smallest or lightest weight mid-layers, compared to other fleece layers Wind Pro is definitely more tightly woven and doesn’t have the “loose” feeling that most fleece has.

Common Features

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

The Ranger and Valkyrie Hoodies both share many common features including material and an active fit. There are differences between them though, which we’ll highlight separately in sections below.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie
Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie
  • Single Underarm Panels w/ Pit Vents – The pit vents are a button-hole like shape versus traditional full zippers.
  • Aero Hood Design – A great design consideration that went into the Aero Hood was the ability for it to lie flat, reducing bulk around the neck.
  • Two Large Chest Pockets with D-Ring, Pen Pocket and Media Ports – The Ranger’s chest pockets seem a bit higher up than the Valkyrie’s, but are still not too high on either to rest your hands in.
  • Two Upper Arm Pockets with D-Ring and Media Ports – Traditionally with zippered upper arm pockets, opening and closing them can be difficult without holding the sleeve. The thumb hole sleeve cuffs make this entirely manageable.
  • YKK Zippers with Zipper Garages and Pull Tabs – Another element of the attention to detail that’s visible throughout these hoodies!
  • Thumb Hole Cuffs Integrated into Cuff and Sleeve Seam – These thumb loops truly feel as if they’re made to be there.
  • Drop Back Hem and Adjustable Locking Waist Drawcord – Ensures that the insulating properties of these mid-layers aren’t wasted on a draft at your waist.
  • 1″x1″ Loop Swatch with Included Logo Patch at Right Hip – The TAD PVC logo patch is glow-in-the-dark.
  • Made in the USA – Enough said.

Ranger Hoodie: Bryan

As mentioned I’ve been a customer of TAD for a long time and it’s been awesome to see them continuously evolving their line-up of functional apparel and hard-use gear into all that it is today. Used by outdoor enthusiasts, Military and style conscious individuals alike, TAD has truly made a name for themselves since 1997 and is a company I find much in common with. Their devotion to attention to detail and design runs parallel with the principles that ITS was built on.

The Ranger Hoodie is no exception to TAD’s legendary apparel. Each aspect of the construction has been meticulously honed and shaped into a product that exudes design perfection. I don’t say that lightly either, it’s impossible for me to spot any kind of flaw in the stitching or construction.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Features

Other than what we discussed above, there are quite a few features that the Ranger Hoodie has that the Valkyrie doesn’t. The largest visual differences are the rear double-entry hunter’s (duck) pocket and the left forearm pocket. I’m not a huge hunter and probably wouldn’t stick a duck back there anyway if I did, but it’s a nice feature to have. I’ve stored a beanie and gloves back there in both this Ranger Hoodie and the other jackets I own from TAD. It also makes a good magazine dump pouch for either a right or a wrong-handed person.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie
Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

The left forearm pocket is also great for smaller items that might be included in your EDC, such as knives, fire starters, etc. While we’re talking pockets, I need to note that the zipper caves that TAD has integrated really do a great job of silencing the zippers. The quality YKKs Covert Zippers they use also have some degree of silencing already with a spring-type pull that helps keep them from flopping around. The pen pockets, media ports and d-rings are all excellent features found on the pockets. Being able to dummy cord or lanyard in a device with something like a Coiled Lanyard we’ve shown on our KOTW is a tremendous benefit!

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Chest pocket positioning also allows easy access if you’re wearing a chest rig or body armor over the Ranger Hoodie. The media port contained in the chest pockets, as well as the sleeve pockets, is a small 1″x1″ PVC patch that’s cut to allow easy routing of cords and headphones. A small but perfect example of the attention to detail again, is the inclusion of a small hard-plastic cable-routing tube sewn into the interior of the main zipper on both sides. This allows you to conveniently drop your headphones without worrying about them falling down below your waistline or hunting for them.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Pocket interiors are also lined with a sturdy mesh-like material that I really like. The interior is coated with what feels like fleece, so it maintains the overall softness of the hoodie, but allows ventilation at the same time. Many mesh pockets I’ve come into contact with feel thin and that they won’t hold up to abuse, but this isn’t the case on the pocket lining of the Ranger Hoodie.

Something the Valkyrie doesn’t feature is the option to include or exclude die-cut 3″x5″ loop panels for patches on the sleeves. They’re very nicely done; the rounded edges, color-matched loop and nearly invisible stitching all contribute to the seamless appearance of the loop panels.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie
Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Another subtle difference on the Ranger Hoodie is the description of the flap on the main zipper near your chin. On the Ranger it’s called a beard flap to prevent getting your beard caught up when your zipping up the jacket, but on the Valkyrie Hoodie it’s called a chin guard. Nevertheless, another fantastic item of detail.

The last small feature is the inclusion of “Ranger Eyes” on the back of the Ranger Hoodie. Two 1″x1″ rounded-edge loop swatches are placed for reflective/glow-in-the-dark/IR identifiers.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Ranger eyes are traditionally used for IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) and their purpose on the Ranger Hoodie is no different. It’s a nice touch to be able to visually recognize friends or members of a unit without having to see them. TAD also offers a complement of glow-in-the-dark Ranger Eye velcro patches.

Usage and Fit

It’s starting to get cold around here, even for Texas. I’ve been able to try out the Ranger Hoodie in quite a few different temperatures already and I’m really liking the versatility and warmth it provides. One particular outdoor adventure I was on recently, involved traveling at around 40 mph on a boat in cool early morning weather (40s). While not all the wind was blocked with the Ranger, it did an excellent job of keeping me warm and dry from the water spray while traveling.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

I was just backpacking last weekend and grateful I had the Ranger Hoodie along to wear in conjunction with an OR merino wool long-sleeve I have. That combination of a base and mid-layer, kept me warm enough through a mid-40 degree evening.

I’ve typically been a Medium to Large fit in most garments and it can often be challenging to know which to get when shopping. For you Military guys out there, I’m a Medium Regular. In t-shirts, large seems to work best. The Ranger Hoodie I’m reviewing is a Large and isn’t too loose at all. I’m sure I could have fit into a Medium as well and might have gone with that if I was using it solely as a mid-layer, but because of the versatility of being an outer layer as well, I’m glad I went with the large. Additionally, the large fits well under a hardshell.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

This is the first garment I’ve worn that features thumb holes and while I admit it was odd at first, I’m really enjoying having them. It’s one more feature that adds to the versatility of the Ranger Hoodie and a stylish element not seen on many garments. It also feels like my hands stay warmer, but that may just be in my head.

The Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie is available in S, M, L, XL, XXL and XXL (each with or without upper arm patch loop.) It comes in Loden Green (as seen here), Black and UE Grey.

Valkyrie Hoodie: Kelly

Those of you who live in Texas know that our weather can go from sunny and 90 degrees, to 70 and windy with a chill to the air in less than 10 minutes. The current change from summer to fall has been no exception. Fortunately for me, I had the TAD Valkyrie Hoodie with me at a recent football game where that’s exactly what happened.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

I looked around and saw plenty of ladies in the thin, mainstream hoodies and track jackets who were hunkered down trying not to shiver in the 25 mph cold gusty winds. The thumbhole cuffs kept my hands warm and also kept the draft from entering the sleeves and moving up my arms. The adjustable draw cord around the hem kept the bottom of the hoodie snug over my pants so that my torso also stayed toasty.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

Recently, I was also in Arkansas where the nighttime temperatures were in the 40s and we spent a lot of time relaxing near a campfire. It was great to sit far enough away from the fire so I didn’t feel the intense heat, but was protected from the cold while wearing the Valkyrie Hoodie and a simple cotton short-sleeved t-shirt underneath. I’m one of those gals who gets cold easily and is typically shivering with the slightest chill in the air, but while wearing the Valkyrie Hoodie I’ve actually been comfy in the cold air.

Blocking the wind and chill isn’t all that’s great about this hoodie. The hood has an extra brim on the front that TAD refers to as having an Aero Hood Design that lays flat against the back when it’s not being used. There are multiple vents under the arms to help keep air circulating and the interior of the chest pockets and sleeve pockets have d-rings and media ports to help secure gloves, phones, keys or whatever you may need to keep handy.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

The media ports also run up through other strategically placed points inside the hoodie to help keep ear phone wires from flopping around or getting tangled in the zipper. Something to note is that the chest pockets are more like hand pockets and are a bit lower on the Valkyrie, as compared to the Ranger Hoodie above.

I also want to point out that I love the subtle branding that TAD includes on this garment. Close to the hem on the front of the hoodie, just to the right of the zipper, is a simple 1″ x 1″ loop square with the TAD logo patch which glows in the dark.

Triple Aught Design Ranger Hoodie and Valkyrie Hoodie

The styling is modern, sleek and complimentary to a feminine physique, which is hard to find in a fleece hoodie. I consider the 100% Polyester Polartec to be easy care too (I wash it and dry it in cool temps in a machine). I’m excited that the cooler weather is here to stay in Texas so that I’ll have even more opportunities to stay warm in the Valkyrie Hoodie.

The Triple Aught Design Women’s Valkyrie Hoodie is available in S, M, L and XL. It comes in Loden Green (as seen here), Black and UE Grey.

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Jason A
Jason A

Too expensive - it's more of a "status" symbol for people that pull triggers or think they do.

Dan
Dan

Dude, its an FJ cruiser - nice one. I am thinking of getting one just like it, here in Australia the steering wheel is on the other side.

Lane
Lane

An infantryman or cop might be able to afford this stuff after 'saving up' for a month or two however, most purchasers of this gear will just pout when it gets stained by paintballs..........or their airsoft rifle batteries die.

Curt Cobler
Curt Cobler

After retiring from Fire service I got into the apparel business and while I agree with your loyalty I feel I can disagree a bit. We designed products, Biker mostly, so it did need to meet high standers. We had our line made off shore due to the fact our, forward thinking, Government left us few choices. (Side note large scale leather tanning has been run out of the country by the EPA.) But a issue for another day. We started a cotton and other material line. and found that we could have everything made in the Good O' USA as inexpensive as Off Shore when shipping, time, and duties etc. was added in the mix. The auto industry made everyone believe products made here had to cost "A little more". With all of the idle workers and empty factories, employers in this country need to stop shooting for a 400% mark-up and work on a reasonable mark-up and increase in quantity of sales. Price to your buyers and you will be surprised at how much $ you can make.

My $.02

Thanks,

Curt

MIke
MIke

I got almost the same EXACT jacket from Condor for $80

Cory
Cory

That fleece Looks amazing I wish I could shell out that kind of money for a jacket. But, I work for a local government.

Dan Morales
Dan Morales

Great write up. I've owned a Ranger hoodie since early summer and just learned of two of it's features from your article. I had no idea about the plastic cable routing tube or the 1x1 hook & loop patches on the back of the hood so thanks for that.

It is indeed a well though out and well made jacket.

Dan Morales
Dan Morales

Great write up. I've owned a Ranger hoodie since early summer and just learned of two of it's features from your article. I had no idea about the plastic cable routing tube or the 1x1 hook & loop patches on the back of the hood so thanks for that. It is indeed a well though out and well made jacket.

Jim
Jim

Great designed piece w/ awesome features. yeah the price is a little high but many other not mentioned brands have fleece jackets in the same or higher range w/o the features of this one.....it's a sweet overall design...

tim
tim

$100 dollar fleece is hardly a shortcut. Like i said you got the money to blow go for it. I know all about dropping coin on comfortable gear that holds up. But come on, $235 is a lot of money for a fleece. I'm sure it's the finest fleece ever made, all in the US, (except for possibly the fabric) but it is very very expensive for a fleece.

Madnet
Madnet

Beg to differ Tim...........I'm in the field constantly and I have found TAD's gear to stand up to the rigors. I am extremely hard on my equipment and rely on what will stand up to the abuse. I don't short cut on my weapon platforms, chest rigs, molle gear, or clothing. makes a big difference sometimes between quality and sub standard gear. I'm not saying you can't save on somethings, but if you are put in "Hot Spots"....... it's nice to know you don't have to worry about your load out becuase you done your research and bought what's best!

Patrick
Patrick

Thanks to Kelly and Bryan for their review of our Ranger and Valkyrie Hoodies. ItsTactical is an intelligent, insightful and articulate venue, rich with practical, preparedness knowledge from a martial, outdoor, and even urban use contexts.

Points of origins, manufacturing sources, and basic to complex consumer production schedules have been the topics of endless debates, flame wars, and soap box oratory with any number brands/companies since long before the internet. Unless one has taken the time to truly embark on a studied examination of consumer products and how they are produced, it is difficult to have real insight into how this whole endeavor works.

End of the day, TAD is just one brand out of hundreds. However, we take great pride in how we design and produce our apparel, nylon and hard goods. We choose who we feel are the best people and organizations that can execute our products. TAD is a very small company and a tiny fraction of the output of REI, tNF, arc-teryx, and any number of other well known brands. We produce hundreds, not ten's of thousands in our styles.

For those curious, in the instance of these 2 reviewed styles, for the record:

• Maldens Mills Polartec WindPro fleece, made in the USA.

• YKK (BTW, YKK is a Japanese company) zippers made in Canada and specialized reverse coil zipper sliders made in Japan.

• Hardware made in the USA.

• Sewn in the Bay Area, California.

There are many good to great brands out there. We are just one to select from, and as Americans in a free market, we have the privilege and freedom of choice, where and how to spend our earned dollars.

Design and quality are our top objectives in what we make. No smoke and mirrors, we're too small and rather task our brain matter on how make better products, not spin flame embellished stories. We are honored to have men and women from all walks choose our brand. We also recognize the value of competition and the need for brands on all levels for various consumer needs. There are many decent to good brands that are high volume, mass market, and low price point.

TAD is NOT high volume, mass market, low price business model. Our retail prices are based on a very narrow schedule, and what goes into the product results in the retail price. We are lucky to have stayed in business almost 15 years now due to the loyal group of core customers who understand the underpinnings of what it is we are trying to do, and the high level of product we are trying to achieve. We are not for everyone, we understand that. Nor are we trying to be all things to all people either. The Blackhawks, 511's, etc of this world are already doing a great job at that.

In either end of a business model, the economy of production here or anywhere dictates any fair-play brand's final retail price.

There is a place for brands like 511 to TAD, Craftsman to Snapon, etc in the current market place. The winner is the American consumer. There is variety, there are different price structures; we have choice.

We make products that I myself want to use, everyday at home or in the field.

I'd love a TLC ICON FJ44 someday. Those are ungodly expensive, but I am not going to point my fingers at them and stomp my feet behind a computer screen about it b/c I can't afford it. I CAN research, compare, and recognize the thought that went into it and the superlative level of execution. Would I prefer a Noveske carbine over a brand X that costs $500 less? Do they look the same from 20' away, do they send a 62gr steel core projectile down range, sure. The diffs are in the details. And heck yeah, I'd take a Noveske or LMT than brand X if I could afford it.

Where does the subjective criteria stop? It stops wherever some one has tried to argue and win their subjective point. Anyone of us can argue a point ad nauseum. What it should boil down to is making the choice that is right for your tasking, sensibilities and budget.

I nor TAD is here to poo-poo on other brands. There's alot of decent $50 fleeces out there. However if one is willing to step up, see and understand the diffs in a fleece such as ours, then we are an another option if one chooses see the options at hand. :-)

Cheers,

-Patrick

Patrick
Patrick

Thanks to Kelly and Bryan for their review of our Ranger and Valkyrie Hoodies. ItsTactical is an intelligent, insightful and articulate venue, rich with practical, preparedness knowledge from a martial, outdoor, and even urban use contexts. Points of origins, manufacturing sources, and basic to complex consumer production schedules have been the topics of endless debates, flame wars, and soap box oratory with any number brands/companies since long before the internet. Unless one has taken the time to truly embark on a studied examination of consumer products and how they are produced, it is difficult to have real insight into how this whole endeavor works. End of the day, TAD is just one brand out of hundreds. However, we take great pride in how we design and produce our apparel, nylon and hard goods. We choose who we feel are the best people and organizations that can execute our products. TAD is a very small company and a tiny fraction of the output of REI, tNF, arc-teryx, and any number of other well known brands. We produce hundreds, not ten's of thousands in our styles. For those curious, in the instance of these 2 reviewed styles, for the record: • Maldens Mills Polartec WindPro fleece, made in the USA. • YKK (BTW, YKK is a Japanese company) zippers made in Canada and specialized reverse coil zipper sliders made in Japan. • Hardware made in the USA. • Sewn in the Bay Area, California. There are many good to great brands out there. We are just one to select from, and as Americans in a free market, we have the privilege and freedom of choice, where and how to spend our earned dollars. Design and quality are our top objectives in what we make. No smoke and mirrors, we're too small and rather task our brain matter on how make better products, not spin flame embellished stories. We are honored to have men and women from all walks choose our brand. We also recognize the value of competition and the need for brands on all levels for various consumer needs. There are many decent to good brands that are high volume, mass market, and low price point. TAD is NOT high volume, mass market, low price business model. Our retail prices are based on a very narrow schedule, and what goes into the product results in the retail price. We are lucky to have stayed in business almost 15 years now due to the loyal group of core customers who understand the underpinnings of what it is we are trying to do, and the high level of product we are trying to achieve. We are not for everyone, we understand that. Nor are we trying to be all things to all people either. The Blackhawks, 511's, etc of this world are already doing a great job at that. In either end of a business model, the economy of production here or anywhere dictates any fair-play brand's final retail price. There is a place for brands like 511 to TAD, Craftsman to Snapon, etc in the current market place. The winner is the American consumer. There is variety, there are different price structures; we have choice. We make products that I myself want to use, everyday at home or in the field. I'd love a TLC ICON FJ44 someday. Those are ungodly expensive, but I am not going to point my fingers at them and stomp my feet behind a computer screen about it b/c I can't afford it. I CAN research, compare, and recognize the thought that went into it and the superlative level of execution. Would I prefer a Noveske carbine over a brand X that costs $500 less? Do they look the same from 20' away, do they send a 62gr steel core projectile down range, sure. The diffs are in the details. And heck yeah, I'd take a Noveske or LMT than brand X if I could afford it. Where does the subjective criteria stop? It stops wherever some one has tried to argue and win their subjective point. Anyone of us can argue a point ad nauseum. What it should boil down to is making the choice that is right for your tasking, sensibilities and budget. I nor TAD is here to poo-poo on other brands. There's alot of decent $50 fleeces out there. However if one is willing to step up, see and understand the diffs in a fleece such as ours, then we are an another option if one chooses see the options at hand. :-) Cheers, -Patrick

Madnet
Madnet

I've been using TAD Gear for several years now. You pay a little extra, but thier gear is top notch. I use the Ranger Hoodies, Spectre Hard Shell, Spectre LT, and their back pack. Patrick Ma (Owner) stands behind his products. And additionally, if you are Military or LE, they give you the "MILLE" discount. Condor just replicated TAD's Spectre HoodieLT.....it was be less expensive, but so is the quality. TAD's customer service Rocks.....which is hard to find anymore. Also, if your looking to outfit a Tactical Team....Contact Raquel Rusing at TAD...she will take care of you.

Billy Johnson
Billy Johnson

Interested in why their website doesn't say anything about MADE IN THE USA. I can't understand this, seems like a big marketing advantage to me. I'm always skeptical about Made in the USA, as I've found Blackhawk not being honest about this several times.

Curious if they sent you samples that where sewn here and production is done overseas. I think their gear looks awesome but I'd never, ever pay that much for imported material. I wish manufactures would be more honest about where components and all the materials originate from, not just where it's assembled.

Thanks for the review!!

Billy Johnson
Billy Johnson

Interested in why their website doesn't say anything about MADE IN THE USA. I can't understand this, seems like a big marketing advantage to me. I'm always skeptical about Made in the USA, as I've found Blackhawk not being honest about this several times. Curious if they sent you samples that where sewn here and production is done overseas. I think their gear looks awesome but I'd never, ever pay that much for imported material. I wish manufactures would be more honest about where components and all the materials originate from, not just where it's assembled. Thanks for the review!!

Tactical Tom
Tactical Tom

So when are we going to see a Crew Leader/Plank Owner discount?

Theblackknight
Theblackknight

Not many people, even ones that follow this site, will truly need a 250 fleece with cat eye velcro.

Giovani
Giovani

Tim,

I used to prescribe to buying ten tee shirts for 10 bucks rather than one for 45-that's changed now. The reason is in the long term, those 10 shirts just don't last. I'm much happier buying one really expensive item and wearing it all the time, rather than a bunch. My closest went from pretty bloated, to spartan-and I'm much happier now. Some brands inflate their prices for the name, but others are legit. I'm not saying to get this particular piece of gear, but take the plunge-when buying quality-I doubt you will be disappointed.

Kenny
Kenny

Bryan, living The 'Plex (Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex), will you get enough use out of a fleece jacket? I have a fleece jacket I picked up on a double-clearance rack at Kohl's that I can only wear when it's 30° out. But, maybe that's just me. Being an old fat guy, I tend to run a little anyway.

Phil
Phil

Please don't say anything about "Made in America" again! Is that not a Toyota in the photographs.

I can't justify the price of TAD gear, but at least my vehicles are Fords and a Harley.

Phil
Phil

Please don't say anything about "Made in America" again! Is that not a Toyota in the photographs. I can't justify the price of TAD gear, but at least my vehicles are Fords and a Harley.

captain H
captain H

whats the vehicle you are using in the shoot?

Steve
Steve

I have to say that the price is a little off putting to anyone. but I am always willing to pay for quality and dependability.I learned much about the company when I visited the store in SF one thing that I appreciate is that the items are all made in small quality controlled runs. made in america isn't the only thing that matters, and doesn't always mean high quality. In my opinion it will always depend on strict quality control. I own many TAD items and by far the most used item has been my ranger hoodie this thing has been worn almost daily for about a year I have washed it 50 times the color has held fast and the stitching stayed tight. More than I can say for the many issued fleece layers I have worn over the years.

mmasse
mmasse

So if the hoodie is more expensive because it is made in the USA (which I can understand). What is the deal with the $235 wool sweater that they clearly said is made in China? I was really digging the sweater till the sticker shock set in.

Fails
Fails

Lol yes, pay $200+ for a piece of clothing that provides a very nice handle right next to your neck.

Smutty
Smutty

I have the ranger LT and while expensive, I think it was worth it. Is it for everyone, probably not, but for someone who want to buy American or wants a well thought out and feature rich piece of equipment, then it is worth it. Top shelf brands like Arcteryx are similarly priced and, unfortunately, tend to be made overseas. With TAD, they have gone the extra mile by rethinking norms and adding little features here and there , that's what sets them apart.

Made in the USA
Made in the USA

You might want to rethink (or at least research) the "made in the USA" thing. Much of the clothing that is "made in the USA" is actually made in Commonwealth territories of the U.S. by non U.S. workers. Check out the biggest industry for the Northern Mariana Islands (specifically Saipan).

kevin gardner
kevin gardner

Great article! Ive got both the LT and the regular. I love both of them. Ive worn the Ranger Hoodie while driving into PT at 0430 with the doors off my jeep and it kept me warm. The quality is worth the money. If the money is that big of a deal constantly check TAD Gear's web page. I picked up both of my hoodies on sale. I got the LT version from Huckbery when they were running the special that ITS shared on their Facebook page. These products are worth the money.

tim
tim

I get quality, I get made in the US, but $235 for fleece is just not happening, i could thrash 3 really good fleece jackets for what i would pay for this.

Diggitt
Diggitt

Honest opinion: all TAD clothing is worth the price not just for quality but for functionality. And, it's competitively priced for other brands like The North Face but so much better. One comment; I have the Ranger Hoodie LT which is a pretty sleek fit and the bulk of the hem drawcord cinches bothered me so I cut 'em the *&%* out and now it's perfect.

PPGMD
PPGMD

I agree John, I just don't see what this does better than a $80 REI fleece or any of the other sub-$200 fleeces that you can get descent outdoor shops. It is not like it has any features that make concealed carry any easier, unlike other companies like Eotac.

John
John

Honest opinion Bryan... worth $235 for us mere mortals that don't have awesome blogs and get to review stuff? I love it, it's just that it seems a little steep.

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

I love mine Dan. Been fixing it up lately too. I just drove a right hand drive jeep the other day for the first time and driving on the right side of a vehicle is definitely a different experience!

Curt Cobler
Curt Cobler

Please do not think I am trying to knock this Company, Owners, or Employees. I am sure they have a great product. As I also buy US and give them credit for that. Just tired of being told you have to pay more because it is US Made. Just tell me it's the quality, design, or cost of material Please!!!! But as I said price it right and you will more than make up the difference, and have a lot more of your product out on your customers.

Kenny
Kenny

I completely agree that personal preference is everything. To be honest, if I lived in a part of the country or the world where it was cold more than a couple months a year, I would buy a Ranger Hoodie - I love a jacket/hoodie with plenty of pockets. Although, if I knew I could pull off that 80's-pimp-daddy look, I would buy the Shag Master Hoodie - that thing is the AWESOME.

mmasse
mmasse

I really enjoyed your response Patrick and it is refreshing to see someone who believes in their product to come on here and represent it like you have. Kudos to you.

I would however take umbrage at the whole "but I am not going to point my fingers at them and stomp my feet behind a computer screen about it b/c I can’t afford it". I did not get the sense that any poster here was being childish or throwing a tantrum. People are a lot more sensitive to price points compared to a few years ago and as a business owner you understand this as well. As you state you are not in the main stream and you make a product who others may not have seen or put on. Perhaps it is that is why few people are hesitant to throw down a significant portion of what they earn for your product, stick with what you are comfortable.

Again kudos for taking the time to represent your product on the forums.

Eric S.
Eric S.

Great response Patrick! Agreed that freedom of choice is what its all about.

mmasse
mmasse

I really enjoyed your response Patrick and it is refreshing to see someone who believes in their product to come on here and represent it like you have. Kudos to you. I would however take umbrage at the whole "but I am not going to point my fingers at them and stomp my feet behind a computer screen about it b/c I can’t afford it". I did not get the sense that any poster here was being childish or throwing a tantrum. People are a lot more sensitive to price points compared to a few years ago and as a business owner you understand this as well. As you state you are not in the main stream and you make a product who others may not have seen or put on. Perhaps it is that is why few people are hesitant to throw down a significant portion of what they earn for your product, stick with what you are comfortable. Again kudos for taking the time to represent your product on the forums.

Billy Johnson
Billy Johnson

I see now where they list origin, they nest it under specs. While they do make many products in the USA and some in China, that doesn't mean it's USA materials. However they still make nice looking stuff.

tim
tim

I totally get buying quality, but you can get three good quality fleece for this price,, or 6 or 7 cheap fleece,, i don't think it's about quality, this is simply over priced for most of us. You got the money to blow, blow it. But anyone of actually goes out in the field and tears these up would think twice about dropping that coin.

mmasse
mmasse

One of the most underrated 4x4 vehicles on the market today. Plus the aftermarket for those are pretty good too.

Kenny
Kenny

I assume you mean someone being able to take you down by grabbing the hood. That's why I only wear zip-front hoodies, NOT pull-overs. It at least gives me a chance to unzip and get out of it.

Smitty
Smitty

They are made in California.

Giovani
Giovani

Tim, I used to prescribe to buying ten tee shirts for 10 bucks rather than one for 45-that's changed now. The reason is in the long term, those 10 shirts just don't last. I'm much happier buying one really expensive item and wearing it all the time, rather than a bunch. My closest went from pretty bloated, to spartan-and I'm much happier now. Some brands inflate their prices for the name, but others are legit. I'm not saying to get this particular piece of gear, but take the plunge-when buying quality-I doubt you will be disappointed.

Cervantes
Cervantes

The point is that this is made in the US by Americans (hopefully), and the way to help out the US is to buy US made gear.

Jonathan
Jonathan

I have 2 of these hoodies, the previous version. For what they do, I would say yes they are worth it. I can wear a t-shirt and the RH in 20 degree weather and not be cold. Its water repellent, so whether its snow or rain, I'm not getting wet, and its got plenty of pockets to store my phone, keys, gloves, light, knife, whatever. I don't have a blog, I paid for one myself and got the other as a gift. Yea they're expensive, but the quality is great. Just a college student that works full time and likes good gear. The only downside, they keep making them better and they get hot when the weather turns warmer or you go inside.

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

John, honest opinion. Absolutely. It's American Made and to me that means a lot. As I said in the article, I've been a long time TAD customer and have had no issues paying for quality I know is going to last. It's the same issue we run into with our Discreet Messenger Bags. Made in the US costs more, starting with production.

acme
acme

I am one of those who ventured to try it out after reading the review. I'll tell you the same thing I told the guys who questioned my purchase. It's like wearing a blanket. Kinda like a tactical snuggie; as goofy as that sounds, it's true.

I have to say, I live in Phoenix where the weather is mostly mild and I totally expect this to last for many years, with proper care, as opposed to what you'd get from discount places like Walmart or Target, etc. It's going to be perfect here for above 0 temps. Hell I'm considering getting one for my sister living on the east coast because I already like it that much.

acme
acme

I am one of those who ventured to try it out after reading the review. I'll tell you the same thing I told the guys who questioned my purchase. It's like wearing a blanket. Kinda like a tactical snuggie; as goofy as that sounds, it's true. I have to say, I live in Phoenix where the weather is mostly mild and I totally expect this to last for many years, with proper care, as opposed to what you'd get from discount places like Walmart or Target, etc. It's going to be perfect here for above 0 temps. Hell I'm considering getting one for my sister living on the east coast because I already like it that much.

Curt Cobler
Curt Cobler

After retiring from Fire service I got into the apparel business and while I agree with your loyalty I feel I can disagree a bit. We designed products, Biker mostly, so it did need to meet high standers. We had our line made off shore due to the fact our, forward thinking, Government left us few choices. (Side note large scale leather tanning has been run out of the country by the EPA.) But a issue for another day. We started a cotton and other material line. and found that we could have everything made in the Good O' USA as inexpensive as Off Shore when shipping, time, and duties etc. was added in the mix. The auto industry made everyone believe products made here had to cost "A little more". With all of the idle workers and empty factories, employers in this country need to stop shooting for a 400% mark-up and work on a reasonable mark-up and increase in quantity of sales. Price to your buyers and you will be surprised at how much $ you can make. My $.02 Thanks, Curt

John
John

That's what I wanted to hear... I've seen some items from other manufacturers that I paid a fortune for that didn't last. If it's durable... it's worth every penny.

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