Hydrus material

OK, time for a new drytop.

Has anyone experience with Kokataks new Hydrus material for drytops and drysuits? Breathability, feel, durability, etc. Big price difference from gortex.



Logically speaking
If it is significantly cheaper than Gore-Tex and sold by someone who are ahousehold name in Gore-Texx, the price difference probably reflects the quality difference?

The Hydrus 3L material from Kokatat is being used in many products:


It is Kokatat’s proprietary fabric. It is a relaunch of the T3 material and has new colors along with a lifetime warranty. Perhaps you could ask if anyone has a drysuit made from the T3 material as that has been around for awhile. The Hydrus 3L was launched in January so fewer people have tried it.

As a sales rep for Kokatat, I try all the fabrics. I find that on a scale of 1-10 with 10 the best,for breathability, giving the Gore-Tex 3.21 Evolution (material used for my Expedition drysuit) a 10, the Hydrus 3L, I would give it an 8.

In testing it appears to be very durable and so Kokatat is offering their lifetime warranty on the material. Should the material fail, the product will be replaced. I feel that for consumers, it makes the decision easier to give the less expensive material a try.

I find that when comparing the feel of the material, it feels a bit stiffer and not quite as quiet a material as the GT products.

For pricing - a good way to compare is to look at a product that is made in both materials:

Hydrus 3L Tempest pant: $176

Gore-Tex Tempest pant:$295

Harder to compare the drysuits - same cut different material because the zippers are different. But, here they are (both are men’s suits priced with relief zipper and socks):

Hydrus Meridian: $775

Gore-Tex Meridian: $1030

When making the material decision in your clothing, you can decide what value you place in breathability and the ability for a garment to move moisture. Perhaps the user knows that their personal use of the garment will be limited or they just “don’t sweat” (some people tell me that!), they may prefer to save the money on the material.

I don’t know if I agree with Rubric’s opinion that price reflects quality… I believe price reflects different materials used.

Would you say that a boat made in fiberglass and same boat made in plastic are priced to reflect quality? They are priced differently because the materials used cost differently. Having different material options allows the purchaser to choose products based on the value they put on the options.

Hope the info is helpful to you.

nice work, thanks
I especially like your point regarding the personal value of breathability.

Same material?
Is the Hydrus material the same as the old Tropos material with just a different name, or is it a different fabric? If it is different, what are the differences.

Thanks, Peter

Hydrus NOT Tropos
Tropos is a two layer coated material. Material carries a 2 year warranty.

Hydrus is a 3 layer fabric (has the inner scrim which improves breathability, comfort, durability)Material carries a 2 year warranty.

Hydrus is NOT a renamed Tropos.

something esle
is warranty. Especially in drysuits. Kokatat Gore-tex carried lifetime warranty, it means if it fails after two tears due to fabric issues they will replace/fix it. If you have 2 years warranty and then run into issues on the 3rd year, that’s it.

Hydrus is Kokatat’s proprietary fabric. It is ALSO covered by the lifetime warranty - directly from Kokatat.

The same people that make the Gore-Tex products are making the Hydrus in the same US factory in California.

my mistake

I know I’m super late to this thread but I just have to comment here. The reason I’m here is that I’m heavily considering saving some benjamins by going with Hydrus instead of GT. The point I want to make is that Gore-Tex is a proprietary material patented by the W.L. Gore company. Any company that wants to utilize GT in their designs must license it thru W.L. Gore. Now I agree that GT is one hell of a product when it comes to breathability and durability…I’ve had a Sweet Shadrach top (which is a GT product) for the last 6 years and have never done a lick of maintenance to it and it works great still. The only reason I’m getting anything new is that my son is finally as big/tall as me and I want to pass down the Sweet top to him and get myself something new. THE MAIN REASON I’m looking at Kokatat is because of the lifetime warranty. Sorry, I digress, but my main point here is about the added cost of GT. Gore-Tex tends to be more expensive (IMHO) mostly because of the licensing costs from W.L. Gore passed down tot the consumer. Sure…it is a superior product to most other breathable layers but I have never thought its superiority is directly proportional to its added cost. In short, if I can get a product that rates an 8 instead of a 10 for much lower cost (like Hydrus 3L)…I think it is definitely worth a try.

Used my Kokatat Expedition suit 7 years had a problem I though would be repaired. They didn’t repair it. They sent me a new one. Thanks Kokatat.

There’s more to the cost of Gore-Tex than just licensing. All Gore-Tex garments are tested by Gore prior them being released to the market to ensure that they will keep you dry, which is what their “Guaranteed to keep you dry” statement is about. Other fabrics are sold without any such requirements and it’s up to the manufacturer to design and construct garments that actually work. The result is sub-standard products from some manufacturers.

Gore backs it’s fabrics with a lifetime warranty, which is why the manufacturers who use it can do the same with their garments; there’s little risk to them. It’s commendable that Kokatat is willing to put their own reputation and money on the line to back another fabric with a lifetime warranty. That’s a game-changer, as it provides a real - if not quite equal - lower-cost alternative to Gore-Tex.

I would never buy a dry suit without a lifetime warranty, given the conditions they’re used in.