Slightly different mission set than normally discussed on LF but I'm interested in the .mil community here's knowledge base or products I may have not considered.
I am interested in whether those on the forum are aware of any pants suitable to my mission (wildland firefighter that takes somewhat frequent helicopter flights) that will hold up better than the Propper ACU Trouser-FR-New Spec.
I have had two pairs of these now and I love the comfort, moisture wicking, pocket layout and breathability of these pants, I like Multicam too so thats cool but way secondary. The problem is I have yet to get through a fire season without the crotch blowing out on me. I have and also use
-Crewboss PPE Nomex/Tecasafe Basic Issue Greens; these aren't bad but the cargo pockets are mounted too low so anything with weight bounces off your knees constantly while hiking which causes bruising in short order, x14 days = annoying as shit.
-Crewboss PPE Elite Advance (Kevlar/Nomex Blend); These pants are awesome and provide extra brush protection but they are quite expensive and they are HOT, the Advance material does not breathe well and after a few days on the line gets quite stiff and uncomfortable, newly washed they are fine but I could potentially have to wear these for 14 days of 16 hr shifts exposed to dirt, soot, fuel, retardant, smoke, sweat, etc. I appreciate the rip resistance and brush/thorn protection of these but I think there could be a sweet spot middle ground.
* Note- both of these pants are perfectly suitable and I would recommend them to anyone looking to purchase pants for wildland firefighting, they are purpose built for this mission and hold up relatively well, I am simply interested in chasing perfection for ME and exploring options that may be a little outside the box.
Hence the Proppers. FR is obviously a requirement, what this means in the context of my job is a material that is naturally fire resistant in that it will not sustain burning when the heat source is removed and will not melt. I was curious whether the Proppers would actually do this when I ordered the first pair so the first thing I did after confirming they fit was hold a Bic to the ankle cuff for about 20 seconds, they work, it barely discolored the material which is better performance than our issued Nomex.
I have demonstrated this a few times when some overeager safety officer, etc have claimed that my ""army pants" aren't approved because they aren't FR". Some people don't know what they don't know but want to be an expert on everything. Im just looking for a better mousetrap and I thought I had found it until I experienced the wear problems. Is this just a fact of life for those of you who have worn/lived in/fought in these as a uniform? Or is there a different company making a similar or same product that will have a longer service life/ better stitching pattern around the crotch?
Im aware Crye made some FR pants but they seem to be hard to find, quite expensive, and anything with the synthetic knee pads, etc is a no-go. Im hoping some here can help me out with this, I like the pants better than any other options I have tried in the last 13 years but the crotch blowouts means fighting fires and running chainsaws with your dick hanging out, and that is just not a good idea.
Thanks in advance