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Comparison of Columbia Tamiami II, Bahama II, & Bonehead PFG Shirts
on September 24, 2015
Columbia makes some fantastic shirts, but make sure to order the appropriate size. I am 5’10”, 195 lbs, and would typically wear a Large in most similar styled (button-up) shirts, but I have to get a Medium in Columbia PFG shirts. (The Medium is still a moderately loose fit, as the Large is like a tent on me). (By the same token, my dad at 5'11"/230 lbs usually wears an XL or XXL, and he comfortably wears a Large in these shirts). Tip number two is that because these shirts are on different sizing scale, many get returned to the Amazon Warehouse, so keep an eye for Amazon Warehouse deals on these shirts (see tips to finds the easiest way to compare prices across sizes and colors at the conclusion of this review). I have tried the Tamiami II, Bahama II, and Bonehead versions of the Columbia shirts, and have been pleased with all of them. My favorite is the Tamiami II in the summer, but the Bonehead is my choice for fall and winter. Below I have noted the differences in these three styles, for those trying to decide which shirt they may prefer.
TAMIAMI II STYLE (POLY)
The Tamiami II (T2) is my favorite of the three aforementioned styles. The main difference between these styles is material. The T2 is 100% polyester (liner and exterior), the Bahama II (Ba2) is nylon, and the Bonehead (BH) is poplin cotton. The T2 is the thinnest/lightest (most breathable) material of the three styles, also has a slightly shinier appearance, and is probably the most wrinkle resistant of the three (as the fabric is less rigid that the nylon Bahama II or cotton Bonehead). The T2 has a snap button pocket on top with Velcro pockets underneath on both sides, which I also prefer over the pocket style on the other two (Ba2 & BH have identical pocket styles). The synthetic T2 and Ba2 both wick moisture and create a cooling effect better than the cotton BH, but the lightness of the T2 makes it by far the coolest wearing of the three. For outdoor activity in the heat and humidity of summer, it would definitely be my preferred choice. The long-sleeve version is fantastic for offshore fishing when lightweight sun protection is essential. (The T2 & the Ba have an SPF rating, as the weave of the fabric is “lose” enough to allow some penetration of UV through the material itself; whereas, the Bonehead traditional cotton weave blocks essentially all UV penetration through the material itself – but this means it has a heavier feel and does not evaporate moisture as well).
BAHAMA II STYLE (NYLON)
The Bahama II is the middle ground between the T2 and the BH. It is synthetic - similar to the T2, but is nylon exterior shell with a polyester liner (whereas T2 is poly liner and shell). The pockets on the Ba are the same traditional Columbia PFG look as the pockets on the Bonehead. The slightly more rigid feel of the nylon, also gives the Bahama a more traditional (cotton-look) appearance than the T2. The Ba nylon manages moisture better than the BH cotton version – i.e. it evaporates sweat more quickly. Other than that, the Ba and the BH are pretty close to the same.
BONEHEAD STYLE (COTTON)
Most everything has already been covered. The BH and the aforementioned Ba styles look virtually identical. Essentially, I like the Bonehead for occasions when I won’t be sweating as much and for drier/cooler weather, so I prefer these in long sleeve for fall and light winter wear. I also like the traditional appearance of the Ba and the BH for work wear, but the T2 look I like better for casual.
AMAZON PRICE COMPARISON & WAREHOUSE DEALS
I used to always get aggravated at the way Amazon list apparel items with multiple colors, as it can take forever to search through multiple color (and size) options to see the cheapest offerings. On my iPad (mobile version of the site) the color prices are displayed in a list style automatically, but on my PC desktop I would have to select each color/size individually to see the price options. I did not realize there is a much simpler way. Select the “new and used from” (or “new” if no used offerings available) icon, which will take you to a list view. Then select a size and click “lowest offer for each” beside the color selector. It will display the cheapest offering for each color shirt in that size, so you can quickly see which colors are the cheapest. Also, this view will show any Amazon Warehouse Deals available. As mentioned in the first paragraph, these shirts get returned often due to sizing issues, so many times the Warehouse deals are shirts that were tried on and immediately returned for a smaller size.