on October 24, 2011
My husband has always loved Carhartt clothes, but we never knew they would save his life! He was out cutting wood with a chainsaw wearing a pair of these pants. As he was cutting a large log, he lost his footing on one leg, and the running chainsaw came done on his leg right above the knee. He looked to see how bloody his leg was, and amazingly, the only thing that had happened was a rip in the pant leg. The chainsaw never touched his leg because of the double layer of fabric on the front of the pants. If he hadn't have had those pants on, he could have cut his leg so badly he probably would have bled to death before he got back home. Consequently, he bought another pair!
on July 13, 2010
I wrote the attached review a few years ago now when I first started wearing carhartts jeans on my motorbike. They quickly became the only brand of jeans I wear on the bike and still are. I particularly like being able to order my exact size, particularly the leg length. I'm a shade over 6' tall, and having heavyweight canvas jeans with 36" legs makes sure there's plenty of material bunched over the tops of my boots to block the wind. They can get a little warm at rest stops on 80+ degree days, on the other hand they protect your legs better when you're back on the road in full sun.
I have a several pairs of these dungarees, a couple common-or-garden, a pair of flannel-lined for colder days so I don't have to bother with longjohns/thermals, a pair 2" oversized waist for concealed carry or wearing over thick thermals/sweat pants/Levi's, and the faded old pair with the front knee panel worn through that are still plenty good enough for yardwork. These things last a long time.
One last thing - if you wash them inside out, the brass rivets won't smack around the inside of the washer and drier drums, and your vintage t-shirts, quite so hard; and if you dry them on 'Low', you'll have a better chance of fastening them the next time you put them on.
I heard about Carhartt work pants as good bike pants over a year ago, and when my last pair of riding jeans wore out, I finally decided to risk $35 to find out. They were right. I've been riding bikes for 35 years, mostly in Lees and Levi's boot cuts, and a decade ago I discovered kevlar lined 'Draggin' Jeans', which are soft, comfortable and great peace of mind for well over a hundred bucks. These Carhartt double fronted dungarees may not protect my ass quite as much as kevlar, but they're as hard as nails and at around forty dollars including tax and freight, I don't need to look any more.
These pants are not far short of wire mesh straight out of the box. I washed mine four times on the long cycle, warm, with extra suds before giving them two rinses and throwing three fabric softener sheets in the tumble dryer with them. After more than 2,000 miles on the bike, lots of normal everyday wear and numerous more washes, these pants have not so much attained the soft like-a-deerskin-glove feel that favorite denim jeans do - it feels more as if it's shaping itself to my body....the double front keeps your legs warm from the pocket line to halfway down your shin, where your 8" boots take over. They are not going to get you home dry through a thunderstorm, but they are more rain resistant than denim and they're just fine in light showers or on wet roads.
These pants sit most comfortably with the belt line at navel level, and they do it without wedging you. This makes a big difference to how cold your back gets after the first 50 miles. I usually take a 36x34, but got these in a 36x36, which are perfect on a bike - the extra 2" stops them riding up past ankle height, even with feet on highway pegs at 70mph, there's less wind whistling up the canyon, and that helps keep you a lot warmer than those hip hugging waders...now that I'm used to them, I wear these pants all day, everyday, and I don't have to worry about getting changed into something more robust if I see a job that needs doing around the house, garden or garage.
I bought one pair to try. After a month and a thousand miles on the bike, I bought another black pair, and a 'Carhartt Brown' (that weird mustardy beige color) pair for gardening, hunting and camping. The pockets are roomy, and I fit my glasses case in the right hand tool pocket, cell phone in the left, and can hang a 4x D-cell torch through the hammer loop. I have a custom made 2" wide leather belt which fits the loops, which it doesn't on 'normal' denim jeans. Because these sit at the waist, I can cinch them up and hang my Buck, Leatherman and a folding tool off it, on top of all the other aforementioned bits and pieces, plus wallet and loose change, all without risking walking out of my trousers. If superheroes wore jeans, this is what they'd wear.
They look pretty reasonable for a burger & beer night out, but after a few miles you might want to pull out the designer labels if you're going out to a real restaurant.
I'll be interested to see how long these things last. I'm thinking 'a while'.
on February 9, 2016
My husband is a soil scientist so he spends a considerable amount of time in the field, that is to say, hiking in remote areas through thick underbrush. He's on his knees a lot too as he's collecting and cataloging samples. He is very rough on pants. A regular pair of Levi's wouldn't last him one summer. We discovered Carharts about 15 years ago and have never looked back! These things are tough! They start out looking and feeling stuff but soften a bit after wearing and washing. The fabric is thick, like a canvas tarp, and the double front knees are awesome! Based on previous pairs he's had, these should last him about five years. One thing to be aware of is that they are 100% cotton and will shrink a bit. He usually wears a 32/32 but we order 32/34 to compensate for shrinkage. They are a little long now, but will be just right after a few washes. He is 6' tall, slender build, 32/34 is pretty baggy now but the overall fit will improve to just how he likes it over time. Hope this is helpful!