Technical is good in the hills and bad if you’re out on the town. I don’t want my 800-fill, 10D nylon puffies anywhere near nacho cheese or all-you-can-eat onion rings at one of Spokane’s fine establishments, so what’s the conscientious outdoorsman to do? Well, Sierra Designs has the answer in their Revolution jacket, a 600-fill down piece that brings a heady dose of outdoorsy manliness into any social situation.
Sierra Designs Revolution Jacket Features:
- 2 Hand Pockets
- 1 Chest Pocket
- Faux Leather Trim
- Attached, Adjustable Hood
- Shell Fabric: 55% Cotton / 45% Nylon, 600 mm DWR
- Insulation: 600-Fill Power DriDown™
- MSRP: $249
Built for the Off-Duty Lumberjack
The Revolution jacket is fundamentally built around taking that classic outdoors aesthetic and making it comfortable for a night on the town. Back in the day this would have counted for a technical piece with its heritage 60/40 cotton/nylon blend and rugged faux leather accents, but nowadays this jacket is suitable for either manly tasks like splitting firewood or, indeed, hitting the streets as your breath fogs out in front of you. The jacket is cut fairly close for a slim and trim look, and there’s no doubt that it leans toward stylish rather than strictly functional.
The jacket features two faux leather-trimmed hand pockets and a brass-studded chest pocket while a stamped leather Sierra Designs logo adds the finishing touch on the sleeve. The hood is partly adjustable and features leather cord keepers rather than a traditional sprung plastic contraption. They look good but are awkward to adjust, and the narrow-gauge cord that Sierra Designs strung through the hood feels cheap, like a shoelace. The inside of the jacket is complimented by a dusty brown contour line motif that instantly makes the jacket look like it’s had years of adventures under its belt. Overall it’s a very classy piece – I keep coming back to the ‘masculine’ motif, but frankly that’s what this jacket screams: “I’m a lumberjack, and I don’t care.”
The jackets performance is a little bit mixed. Its biggest drawback is that it simply doesn’t like to move around much – it’s pretty happy lifting drinks up to your mouth or maybe tossing around a baseball with your son, but if I were to, say, chop a load of firewood (that’s Sierra Designs’ advertising) I’m absolutely certain that I would go up in a storm of goose feathers as I ripped out the armpits; it’s almost impossible to sit down in the jacket without the front billowing up like a balloon. This jacket just doesn’t move well, but let’s remember that it’s not a technical piece and, frankly, we don’t expect it to.
The 600-fill goose down is nice and warm and there’s no doubt that the hydrophobic DriDown technology (which we’ve seen before in Sierra Designs Tov jacket) coupled with a very robust DWR finish on the cotton/nylon blend make it very resilient to precipitation. I wouldn’t feel the need for a rain jacket if I was wearing the Revolution on a rainy day. Lastly, that 60/40 cotton/nylon blend is definitely good stuff – very strong and snag resistant, which is refreshing to see in the crowded field of flimsy 10D nylon down jackets; plus, it virtually eliminates down leakage.
- The Revolution looks good. Real good.
- Lots of attention to detail – SD logo, faux leather accents and hood adjustments
- 600-fill goose down is warm and doesn’t leak through the thick fabric.
- DWR and DriDown combination make this jacket great for cold, wet days
- Moves slightly worse than my pet guinea pig, Reggie, who has been dead since I was 12
- Hood adjustments are hard to use, cord feel cheap
The Bottom Line
The Revolution is a great jacket for its purpose, and it’s refreshing to see Sierra Designs use some of the tried-and-true technologies that got us through the 20th century – cotton and nylon blends, lower-grade goose down for affordability and (faux) leather accents really tie the jacket up nicely. Sure it doesn’t move well and it’s cut pretty close, but so long as you don’t attempt any gymnastics late on a Friday night you’ll have a great time while looking very sharp in the Revolution jacket.
Buy Now: Available from REI.com
hi kevin, thanks for the review. i can’t find any info about how much 600-fill dridown there is in this jacket. it doesn’t look super thick from your photos. could you estimate the coldest temperatures this jacket will be viable for as the outermost layer for just walking around town? i live in boston and wonder if this will be good for the winters here if i add a couple of layers underneath. thanks again.
Alan, you can definitely wear this as an outer layer in the cold of winter. It’s pretty thin, but resists the wind and cold well. The slim-cut could limit the number of layers you wear underneath, especially if you’re a larger guy like me.