I see a lot of new gear every year, trust me on that statement! Between the travels, sales reps., shows, internet, mail, local rivers and more boat ramps than I can remember in the last 6 months...there is very little new stuff out there that I haven't seen, cast, felt, inspected, tested, and developed an opinion on in one way or another. I try to keep the negatives to myself..somewhat...and only speak positively of things that I really like. So, here we go...new waders from Orvis.
The new Silver Sonic waders have won me over in many ways and I think that they will you as well. First off, they are put together using a Sonic Welding technology that Orvis owns the patent to when it comes to making waders. The technology has been around for a while and used in a variety of applications, which call for strong seams. This method of putting fabric together is pretty common in some high tech rain gear, so it's not like it's never been tested for water tightness. I was talking about these waders with a client this summer that happens to be a head dude at one the country's largest private contractor when he started raving about it as the solution they found for their Haz-Mat suits and decontamination tents! When two pieces of fabrics are sewn together, there are holes, and the guys wearing those suits feel a lot more comfortable not relying on some high tech seam tape to cover those holes! When it comes to waders, getting rid of holes is always a great idea and seam tap just wears out overtime, no matter how well it's applied to the seams. The coolest thing with the waders has to do with the foundations of how it's made...the seams are welded, not stitched.
In addition to this "hole-less" construction, the waders excel above and beyond in the feature department as well. They are incredibly lightweight and comfortable for starters, much less stiff than most other waders (any that I know of). They come with two sets of suspenders, the standard ones that I prefer, are adjustable on the front side so that you can easily slide them up or down depending on how you want to wear the waders (very similar to the higher end Patagonia waders) and making it easy when you need to take a leak! The other suspenders can easily be switched out and are the same ones as used in the customer favorite Sonic Seam Pack-N-Travel waders. There is a sizeable outer chest pocket, removable waterproof interior pocket, and the standard "flip-style" interior pocket to boot. The gravel guards have been tweaked substantially and are made of the same nylon material as the outer face on the waders. Finally, the overall construction is consistent with the tried and true 4-layer fabric that has proven itself over time in terms of being highly breathable and, of course, waterproof.
If you are in the market for a new pair of waders, these are worth some serious consideration and we have them in a wide range of sizes in the shop. We will be carrying them in women's sizes (newly redesigned) next spring but can order them in the meantime. The most shocking part of this whole story you ask? The price is only $259! Compare them to other waders under $400 and it's apples to oranges in terms of the features but also according to an independent fabric layer that tested them against all the competition for abrasion resistance and breathability. Check 'em out or order them online!