Fabric innovations for the new 770/775 suits
Meet Valiant – New technologies. New designs. New Benchmark.
Three major components of a fire-fighting structural suit influence its performance and how heavy it is to wear – the outer fabric, the thermal moisture barrier, and the quilted inner layer which provides the heat protection.
Fire brigades have always had to balance how much thermal protection they want their suits to provide with comfort and wearability for their fire crews – more protection generally makes a suit heavier to wear, meaning fire fighters get hotter, are more at risk of heat stress, and of tiring more quickly.
That’s not a compromise you have to make any more.
FlamePro’s new structural turn-out suit, Valiant, sweeps away the need to choose between comfort and performance. But how did we create a suit that minimises these compromises?
We started by listening to firefighters and assembling the right team. A team of experts in garment design, ergonomics, new product development, and technical fabrics to help us conceive the very best structural fire-fighting suit that would set a new benchmark.
Then we started from scratch. The new range is not an evolution of existing products, it’s revolution, born from the team’s expertise and access to the best technologies there are.
Two major innovations allow our new Valiant suit to deliver protection, comfort and practicality – a new moisture barrier, and a revolutionised thermal lining.
Moisture barrier innovation
They say if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you always got. We knew the traditional Gore-Tex Fire Blocker membrane had been used by fire-fighter PPE companies for more than 15 years. There had to be something better.
Our fabric specialist, multi-award-winning Stanley Russell knew just where to look.
The manufacturer of the non-woven product in Fire Blocker had developed a 3D version of the traditional non-woven structure. The fabric structure creates space for air to move, enhancing the speed with which moisture is transferred away from the skin, keeping firefighters cooler for longer.
We commissioned a version of this which has been combined with a customised version of the Event membrane – renowned as the most breathable ePTFE membrane in the world and used by the US military.
This exclusive combination, currently only available in Valiant, gave us a moisture barrier that:
• is the same weight as Fire Blocker
• offers increased breathability, moisture management and high-temperature wash durability
• delivers better thermal performance against radiant heat than like-for-like suits
A new approach to the fire suit’s thermal lining layer
The component that adds the most weight to a structural fire-fighting suit is the thermal lining, which provides the heat protection. Traditionally, barriers are a combination of woven fabric, quilted to spun lace or needle felt, with both fabrics being 100% aramids or aramid blends. This creates a bulky layer which may have high thermal properties but has moderate breathability, lower comfort levels, and could trap moisture.
We wanted to create a revolutionary new thermal lining layer that reduces bulk, increases breathability but still provides excellent thermal protection.
The team worked with one of the world’s leading manufacturers to create a 3D woven structure that combines aramid and viscose to create a fabric with market-leading breathability, superior moisture transportation to keep moisture away from the skin, and great thermal performance without being bulky.
Market-leading fire-fighting fabric systems and totally new designs
We’re shaking up the market with our new Valiant range. It allows buyers to combine our innovative and market-leading moisture barrier and lining with a choice of five outer fabrics to create a structural fire-fighting suit that meets the needs of their brigade.
All of the range features changes to create enhanced comfort, such as Kevlar ® re-enforced knee and elbow pads, lumbar support to make it more comfortable wearing breathing apparatus, and chunky grab tabs to allow you to adjust your suit and access pockets without exposing your hands.
The Valiant suit is also the first on the market to offer fully-certified glow-in-the-dark strips as standard, with different placements on the front and the back of the jacket. This clever idea means if a firefighter is unconscious and needs rescuing in the dark, you’ll not only be able to see them, but you’ll be able to see what position they are in too. And they have been tested through 50 wash cycles.
Choose from male or female cuts in XS to 4XL and from extra small to XX tall – 96 choices for the perfect fit for all your firefighters.
Get in touch to chat to one of our friendly experts by calling +44 (0) 1332 341030.