Outerwear repair

A rip or tear needn’t see your favourite jacket confined to the back of the wardrobe. And there are ways to extend the life of your Five Tens too.

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We know how it is – you buy a new jacket and put a hole the sleeve first time out or you don’t read the instructions properly and wash it at 60-degrees, delaminating all the tape on the seams. Stuff happens but it’s not a complete disaster, you can fix it and here’s how.

Re-seaming is a regular job for repair companies

You have two options for clothing and gear repairs – you can do it yourself or you can use a clothing repair service. There are two big players are Scottish Mountain Gear and Lancashire Sports Repairs and both specialise in outdoor clothing but they also do bike gear and have a sliding scale of prices for things like re-proofing, seam re-sealing, hole repairs and even full zip replacements. They are also accredited by W.L. Gore & Associates to work with Gore-Tex fabrics.

Booking your repair through a third party is a good idea but a cheaper alternative maybe to contact the manufacturer direct. For example, Endura offers a Garment Repair Service for all of its clothing, regardless of age. When we contacted the company about a pair of waterproof trousers we inadvertently boil washed, it quoted a price of £15-18 to re-tape the seams. Endura does do more complex repairs but will quote you before commencing any work. There is an online booking form. The big difference with going direct is company can replace like-with-like and has all the replacement tape/matching materials in stock.

There are certain jobs that we’d leave to the professional but you can do things yourself such as renewing the DWR (durable water repellent) coating. Grangers makes re-proofer and you can renew the DWR in about ten minutes by spraying this on the high wear areas and then activating it with a hair drier.

If you want to patch a tear in a jacket sleeve there are a couple of options – you can buy a generic stick-on patch for about £2.50 from Pennine Outdoor but for a more permanent repair you may want to consider McNett Tenacious tape, which becomes permanent after 24hours. The company also offers an official iron-on Gore-Tex Repair Kit for about £7.99, which like the tape comes in a handy canister, so you’ll never get caught short. Iron-on seam tape is readily available and we bought six meters for £6, again from Pennine Outdoor. If you visit the company website, you’ll also see a range of proofers, patches and even spare buckles and straps for mending trail packs.

Fill yer boots

One of the hardest working bits of kit are your shoes and there is a way to repair those too. You can preserve the box fresh look with McNett’s ReviveX Rubber Boot Saver or Grangers Footwear Repel (£8, grangers.co.uk) but if you need to repair tears, holes or just build up a really worn sole try Shoe Goo £9.99. It’s pretty crude stuff but you may get a couple more months out of those ageing Five Ten Freeriders.

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Failing that you could just get the sole replaced. Lancashire Sports Repairs offers a Five Ten sole replacement service, It’s £45 for a re-sole and is definitely worth doing if there’s life left in the upper.