Found – Bowhunting Money

ATSKO – Scent Control

Found – Bowhunting Money

By Wade Nolan – Bowhunting Biologist

May 29, 2009 – 9:41:31 AM


Are you feeling pinched? Is money tight? I have a plan to add money to your bowhunting budget. It involves taking care of what you already have and it’s easy. If you are like me you already own some quality gear like good waterproof raingear and probably a quality day pack. You may own great boots that used to be waterproof but now leak. Instead of replacing these things for let’s say $250 for new rain gear and $80 for a pack and an additional $125 for boots let me show you how to get at least another year or two out of them.

I speak from current experience. Making my gear waterproof was easy and the results will surprise you. First let’s cover Gortex and the look-a-likes. Do you understand why Gortex type fabrics work? Here’s the science buba-sized for people like you and me. This unique raingear is made up of layers of fabric. The outer shell is usually a nylon blend where the camo pattern is printed. This layer is coated with a topical waterproofing and is really important. It must be squeaky clean. Actually it must bead water or it fails.

The inner layer is the breathable waterproof layer (Gortex). This layer is made up of a very thin sheet of Teflon with very tiny holes in it. These holes are so small that free flowing water (rain) can’t flow in through the holes but water vapor (steamy sweat) can flow out.  

Now that you see the Gortex “layer cake”, understand this; the outermost layer must bead the water for there to be space, between the water beads, for the (sweat) water vapor to escape. The vapor must pass through the area not covered by the water beads. Here is the key point, if the outer most layer “sheets water” (gets uniformly wet with no beading) then the Gortex has no hope of working. If water sheets on the outside, the jacket turns into a plastic bag and you will sweat and get wet from within. Water beading is critical.

The other way you can get rain gear failure is from the tiny holes in the Gortex becoming clogged up with detergent residue. A Clemson University study found that all detergents leave residue behind,  except Sport-Wash.

The simple solution here is to wash your rain gear in Sport-Wash. It restores the waterproofing on the outermost layer by cleaning it and then water will bead. The Sport-Wash will also clean and remove the detergent residue. It’s there from the last time you washed it in some lesser detergent. If water still fails to bead on the outermost layer then the factory applied waterproofing has worn off and you need to re-treat it. I use either Silicone Water-Guard or Permanent Waterguard. 

 Now that I saved you $250 let me move to the $80 savings with your pack. I often carry camera gear in my day pack and I can’t afford to have it get wet. The very best way to waterproof outdoor gear that is made of fabric is to treat it with Permanent Waterguard. This is a liquid cross-linking polymer that is activated by heat. It comes in a spray pump bottle.

Wade sprays clothes with Permanent Waterguard.

First wash your day pack in Sport-Wash and remove all dirt and detergent residue. Next just spray it with Permanent Waterguard. Last tumble it in the dryer for 20 minutes on high. You will be absolutely amazed with the result. The day pack will be totally water repellant and it will last for years, mine has. They say it surpasses the federal waterproofing standard by 25 times and it does. This dries completely odorless and is a persistent waterproofing you can rely on.

Wade applies SNO-SEAL to Boots.

Now for the last savings of $125 for the boots we are going to rescue. The best way to re-waterproof leather boots is with SNO-SEAL. First clean the boot with Sport-Wash and then heat it up with a blow dryer. Apply SNO-SEAL all over the warm boot. I like to work it in with my fingers. Then I add a little heat with the blow dryer and finish it off by buffing it with a cloth.

Kayak on beach with field tested boots.

SNO-SEAL won’t ever migrate out of the leather and it allows the leather to breath. I recently kayaked over 300 miles of an Arctic River, stepping in water for hours a day and at the end of the expedition the leather boots did not leak. That’s a real field test.

So there you have it. I just saved you a total of $455 that you can spend on that out-of-state whitetail hunt this fall. Don’t run out and replace all of your gear. Take care of it. It’s really, “found bowhunting money”.

For the fix and your $455 savings  go to: ATSKO 

There you will find Sport-Wash, Permanent Waterguard and Silicone Water-Guard. I buy my Sport-Wash and Silicone Water-Guard at Wal-Mart and order the Permanent Waterguard on- line.


© Copyright 2005 by