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I haven't used them yet but I have a challenging repair to take to them - a delaminated zipper cover section along a pocket on the side of my 12 yr old Mammut ski pants which are in otherwise good shape.
To the question you ask, I just had one of those flash-through moments where thoughts and experiences collide at a fast rate. While the needs of all mountain bikers have certain similarities, I think you need a Venn diagram anytime you include the typical north shore rider. Sticking with the jacket example: like many/most, we need waterproofness and breathability (let's assume similar climate to keep this simple). And yes, everyone has durability concerns and wear points, but the possibility of falling here is higher than most other places outside the sea2sky...so as a jacket manufacturer, durability is important but so is bulk, weight, and cost.
The flash-through moment comes when I compare this situation to bikes & components of 10 years ago, when mainstream bike companies finally started bringing to bear their true engineering and manufacturing capabilities to products that addressed our needs here on the shore without ignoring the needs of riders elsewhere. In other words, capability and technology came together in ways we hadn't seen before, and now you could buy a strong handlebar that held up to abuse here without being too heavy to spec on a bike intended for somewhere else. Back then, there were products that worked here, but they were mostly ignored elsewhere except in small pockets of technically advanced riding and trailbuilding.
Not a perfect comparison, but the jacket you describe would be perfect here but considered unnecessarily overbuilt in lots of other areas*. Yes, you can wreck at high speed anywhere, but those crashes are rarer in other places, whereas we're always one bar-twist-with-front-wheel-in-a-hole away from an OTB into an elbow-shredding rock garden.
*bike parks excepted
Good review, Andrew. And nice looking jacket, RF. Kudos for trying something different with the gills in the armpits - not unlike what they've done with the Agent waterproof shorts and jackets with vents on the back.
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