A Quick Primer On The Care Of Your Gore-Tex® Garment

Okay, I’ve covered many aspects of W.L. Gore’s Gore-Tex® membrane technology over the past several blog posts.   In fact, some of you are probably hoping this series wraps up soon and I move on to a completely different topic.   Well, good news…there is just one more blog post remaining after this one talking about Gore®, but I’m saving the best topic for last.

Next time I will be writing about the science of camouflage as it relates to ungulate animals (animals with a cloven hoof).   Specifically, I’ll be covering Gore’s® new OPTIFADE Concealment system designed primarily for bowhunters and marketed by Sitka Gear.

But today, I’m going to cover a topic that is vitally important to all Gore-Tex® wearable consumers.   Essentially, what do you do with that new Gore-Tex garment once you bring it home from the store.   How do you care for it properly?

Honestly, I’m not going to draw this blog post out with an exhaustive bunch of necessary steps consumers must do with their Gore® clothing.   Why?   Fact of the matter is…your Gore-Tex® doesn’t really require a bunch of special care.   Sure, you’ve just invested perhaps hundreds of dollars into a breathable, waterproof garment so the natural tendency is to treat it with kid gloves, so to speak.

And by all means you don’t want to abuse it…but in reality, with some of the testing I’ve previously shown, Gore-Tex® will withstand very demanding use.   NOTE: Washing and occasionally cleaning the outer fabric IS NOT ABUSE.   In fact, such actions are a must to get the most performance out of your clothing investment.


In this picture, Larry Bollinger, customer service manager for Gore®, shows how a cross-section of Gore-Tex® material is essentially made up of very tiny microscopic pores— in fact, 9 BILLION per square inch.   These tiny pores are 20,000 times smaller than a water droplet, but moisture will easily pass through them in the form of vapor, such as perspiration from the body.

What is vital to the performance of Gore-Tex® is to keep these pore passageways unobstructed so this vapor can readily pass.   In fact, Bollinger said the most common complaint his customer service team gets about Gore-Tex® not performing properly is easily fixed by washing the garment or cleaning the boots.

When a customer calls up and says their boot is leaking it’s usually a result of two main issues.   The membrane has either been punctured or torn (i.e. barbed wire, nail, etc.) or the boot is so dirty from use these microscopic pores are actually clogged with debris or the improper use of some form of boot dressing.   In the latter case the boot is not leaking, it’s just not allowing the owner’s perspiration to pass through the membrane.   Same effect—wet and uncomfortable feet.

That’s why Bollinger’s best advice to someone who brings home a new Gore-Tex® garment is to wash it.   These important pores can get obstructed even during the assembly process of the garment or boot…so if you want the ultimate performance out of your Gore-Tex® clothing wash it to ensure it’s clean—even if the item is brand new from the store.

Now, the sales folks at the store will likely try to sell you a bunch of after-market detergents to keep your new Gore-Tex® clean.   While Bollinger will not endorse any particular product, I got the sense from him that such expensive specialty care products are not necessary.   In fact, you can use just standard laundry detergent—powder or liquid—just avoid those products also containing fabric softeners…and by all means avoid dryer sheets.

One important note.   The quickest way to restore your Gore-Tex® garment’s Durable Water Repellent (DWR) coating applied to the fabric on the outer layer of the garment is to throw it into the dryer on medium to high heat.   Over time and as the garment is worn, this action is oven necessary to rejuvenate the first-line of repellancy of the outer material.   Failure to do so can cause the outer layer to soak water, become heavier to the user, and possibly disrupt the exchange of water vapor through the membrane.

Again, the important thing to remember is Gore-Tex® containing clothing might be some of the most expensive clothes you ever purchase…but with a few common sense care instructions it will outperform and outlast other articles of clothing found in your closet.

In closing, I want to show you these two quick videos produced by W.L. Gore & Associates.   I thought about making some videos of my own, but these are so well produced I really couldn’t improve on them.   Take a look and you’ll see that owning Gore-Tex® is not a big hassle when it comes to proper care:




Now, just in case you still have questions or concerns about your Gore-Tex product, you can call their customer service at 1-800-GORE-TEX or visit them on the web at: www.Gore-Tex.com or www.Facebook.com/goretex.fan or www.Twitter.com/GORETEX_brand
©2011 Jim Braaten.  All Rights Reserved.  No Reproduction without Prior Permission.

Check This Out | Allegedly The ORIGINAL Motor Home

Received this tidbit in another Email.   Not sure where the photos came from or if the information is completely accurate, but it sure looks intriguing.   You be the judge.

Ford House-Car 



One of only six said to have been made per year in the mid-30′s at the Ford plant in St.Paul, Minnesota , according to an article on this car in a 1993 “Old Cars” magazine article. Very few others–perhaps none–remain on the road, and certainly not in such amazing original condition.

The only other known example that I heard of was supposedly housed in the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn , Michigan . But that turned out to be an early 1920s Model T conversion, the curator told me. He said he’d never seen anything like this ’37!

When discovered in a garage (under a heavy cover) in Northern Minnesota in August 2001, she had only 19,000 miles, and the owner’s manual was actually still in the glove box in like-new condition!

She had always been garaged and treated with ‘Much TLC’ as a collector vehicle.

The interior, all wood lined, was still the way it appeared in the ’30′s and ’40′s, complete with framed photos of the original owner on his travels (mainly to Florida) and his cabin in the North Woods, plus and other memorabilia from the era.

Built on the ’37 Ford Pickup frame and cowling (powered by a 60-hp flathead V8 with aluminum heads), the rear framing is all wood, with the metal skin wrapped around it. The roof structure, too, is all wood, over which the heavy, waterproofed canvas top is still very securely fitted. The structure of the Body is solid, appearing from underneath to be all oak, and still in a remarkably unaltered, undamaged condition.

The door frames are thick, solid oak, and oak is visible around the window openings (as on the four side windows in back) — though it is painted over.

She was a big hit at this campground once we got that Great old flattie V8 hummin’! Note her expanding roof and the original dark green color, which had been repainted. I figure the canvas roof was originally painted in reflective silver to keep it from getting too hot inside. All four side windows open, while the back one tilts out to three positions. The windshield also tilts open at the bottom for natural AC while driving. 

Here are a few shots of her in August 2001, out on the road in the Chippewa National Forest north of Grand Rapids, MN … Practicing for her next adventure: “Destination Wavecrest 2001.”





A peak inside: A slice right out of 1930′s, just as the original owner left it. All the windows open, with curtains on the four side ones and pull-down shades on the back window, as well as on the driver’s and passenger door windows.
A wide storage cabinet is located under the bed.


The wood headliner, with vent and canvas expanding portion visible. Four wood pieces hold it securely in the up position, while clamps hold it down while driving. 


More interior views….note the cedar branches hanging in the corners for that north woods aroma. Cabinets and aluminum sink (with a wood cover insert) are visible on the left. All the antiques stuck away inside, as well as those hanging on the walls, came along for the ride. Also note the table behind the driver’s seat, which folds down.




©2010 Jim Braaten.  All Rights Reserved.  No Reproduction without Prior Permission.

Bob Lessard’s Famous Fish Batter Recipe

It’s not too often you find a recipe gracing the Sportsman’s Blog pages.   In fact, I believe you have to go way back to the infancy of this blog site to find the last food recipe I shared with my readers.   Now, mind you, it’s not because I don’t like to both eat and to cook…but for some odd reason I just don’t usually find the topic of food preparation interesting enough to focus on it.

Nevertheless, for the sake of variety and to kick off this new fishing season…I felt that passing along a recipe today seemed like an appropriate thing to do.   Besides, this is no ordinary recipe.   What I’m about to pass along is none other than former Minnesota State Senator Bob Lessard’s “not-so-secret-anymore” fish batter recipe.   The recipe was recently printed in the Minneapolis StarTribune’s Outdoors Section in advance of the 2006 Minnesota Fishing Opener.

In a time when store shelves are filled with commercially prepared fish batter mixes costing as much as $3 or more per box, it’s kind of nice to know that a homemade batter mix can be concocted without all the exotic ingredients found with some recipes.   Give it a try!

Here’s the recipe in its entirety:


Walleye (or other fish) fillets

1 cup flour

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon garlic salt

1 teaspoon lemon pepper

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 cup beer

1 or 2 eggs, as desired


• Combine eggs and beer, then mix in dry ingredients. Stir. Batter is too thick if it sticks to a finger without dripping slightly, too thin if it runs off altogether. Adjust in either case by adding more beer or more flour.

• Prepare fillets by cutting them in half. Important: Dry the fish on paper towels so the batter sticks to them. Dip fish in batter.

• Using oil of your choice, deep fry until golden brown (either in a deep fryer or deep skillet).

• Batter won’t spoil and can be reused if refrigerated. “The next day when you look at it in the refrigerator, it won’t look very good,” retired state Sen. Bob Lessard said. “But just stir it, again adding more beer or flour as necessary for desired thickness.”

Former State Senator Bob Lessard was a stalwart advocate for everything hunting and fishing in Minnesota politics for over 25 years before retiring in 2002.   Lessard is often credited as being one of the strongest supporters of sportsman’s issues to ever to sit in the legislative chambers in St. Paul.   While many folks remember Lessard for his politics…others fondly recall his legendary annual fish frys at the capitol where this recipe often proved to be the center of attention.

© 2006 Jim Braaten.  All Rights Reserved.   No Reproduction without Prior Permission.