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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 05:06am - Jun 23,09
Posts: 1110

Post Posted: 01:29pm - Jul 13,20 
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I have a pair of Orvis Encounter waders which are probably 3-4 years old at most. Being 73, I am not particularly hard on my waders (last year, I went through a total knee replacement which kept me on land fr months) and wading is mainly on the duper. Last year, I started to sense wet feet in the stocking foot and it was more of an annoyance at the end of a couple hours. This year, it is really squishy so I decided to go after the cause and repair it. So, I turned the waders inside out, hung them and started to fill them with water. There is no tear but the seams along the legs are giving way and the cause. So, I marked them to maybe be sent to Orvis.
So, the question is how long should waders last (excluding catastrophic failure like a puncture)? And do you have any recommendations for/against wader brands? OTOH, I am not contemplating the spending of $500 for a pair of which I really don't need (I am not guiding or making a living off the sport). So, practicality rules.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:11am - Feb 12,03
Posts: 486
Location: Lockport, IL

Post Posted: 06:05pm - Jul 13,20 
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Patagonia or Simms. Both brands are the top of the performance list and they are the innovators pushing the industry. Both companies also stand behind their products and can repair/replace whenever needed. It's not "no questions asked" but if you are honest with them and not exaggerating/making a huge deal, they are willing to work with you.

Don't let the MSRP turn you away. You can regularly find older models for at least 30% off, and if you can hit it right, 50% off.


My Simms G3's are on their 4th season and I had a pair of Patagonia Skeena River's for 5 seasons before that. The Skeena's were sold because I wanted to see what Simms had to offer, not because the Patagonia's failed. That's 9+ years for about $500 invested and neither was/is close to giving up. As a "light" user, you should have no problem getting 6-7 years out of them easily.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 12:23pm - Nov 26,17
Posts: 28
Location: c hills

Post Posted: 09:51am - Jul 14,20 
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I'm guessing Orvis will likely repair or replace. Customer service is generally pretty decent. If it were me buying new waders I'd go with Simms for sure. Pricey but like anything else, you get what you pay for. I would also take a look at LL Bean. It's been a long time since I've purchased waders from LL Bean but the waders I have purchased from them have lasted a long time. At the time they had a lifetime warranty but I have no idea if that is still the case. For the money they were a very good purchase.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 10:11am - Feb 12,03
Posts: 486
Location: Lockport, IL

Post Posted: 05:26pm - Jul 14,20 
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L.L. Bean discontinued their Lifetime Warranty on all products several years ago...

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 05:06am - Jun 23,09
Posts: 1110

Post Posted: 02:37pm - Jul 15,20 
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I took the waders to Orvis Yorktown and they charged me $40. 4-6 Weeks is the prognosis. So, it is bank fishing (no fly rod unless I find a good spot on a pond) for awhile. While there, I browsed and noted that the Orvis BOA Pivot boots are on sale for 50% ($98 instead of $198). The clerk said that only a few (not mine) sizes are available with the vibram sole so I ordered a pair with the felt soles. Heck, most of my fishing is on the slime covered rocks of the DuPage. So, getting back my waders (or whatever) I will see if they are a good fit. If not, they get returned. I have been using Korker's lower end boots since they have replaceable soles but the body gives out in a few years.
So, we will see.
LL Bean doesn't seem to get good reviews for durability. What else is new in this day and age for anything.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 12:23pm - Nov 26,17
Posts: 28
Location: c hills

Post Posted: 04:12pm - Jul 15,20 
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That's too bad about LL Bean. I still have the last pair I bought from them as backup. They are probably 10 years old now...they are bomb proof. I don't wade as much now as I used to but those things have been put thru the wringer and they are still going strong. The felt is great on mossy rocks for sure...down side to the felt is if you move from river to river you can transport invasive species. They are banned in some states and I believe they are banned in Yellowstone as well so if you ever want to travel just be aware.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 05:06am - Jun 23,09
Posts: 1110

Post Posted: 06:52pm - Jul 15,20 
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There is one notion I cannot come to understand about the transfer of invasive species. Yes, it can happen via foot traffic but what about the magnitudes greater number of water fowl that go from spot to spot? Especially in their feathers. It is a fact that viruses find the avian transportation to be the number one way to go which is why so many have developed that way.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 05:06am - Jun 23,09
Posts: 1110

Post Posted: 06:54pm - Jul 15,20 
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If I get another shot to go to CO or elsewhere and need new boots, that will be the least of the cost of travel.

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Chitown-Angler

Joined: 05:06am - Jun 23,09
Posts: 1110

Post Posted: 03:39pm - Jul 30,20 
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I am back in business! After only 2+ weeks, Orvis sent me a new pair! Since they no longer sell the Encounter waders, they gave me a pair of Clearwater waders. Tried them on with the new pair of boots, everything feels good. A little tight for the boots but I have been using Korkers which seem to run a tad loose (so the tighter boot will give me more support).

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