Materials

ULTRA Fabrics™

The Challenge ULTRA™ line of fabrics is composed of the highest performing UHMWPE composite fabrics in the world.

In a class of its own, ULTRA™ represents a new paradigm in durability and weight. ULTRA™ weave is constructed with an optimal blend of UHMWPE & high-tenacity polyester. The tight weave is laminated with an eco-friendly adhesive to our revolutionary Challenge RUV™ film. The result is a textile that is incredible strong, lightweight, and waterproof to 20 000mm. ULTRA™ performs in the harshest environments, in both sub-zero and tropical climates.

ULTRA 200 X™

This is our best selling pack fabric. And for a good reason as it probably is the most advanced pack fabric on the market today. It features woven face made up of 66% 200D UHMWPE fibers and 34% recycled polyester. At a slight weight increase compared to DCF2.92, the Ultra 200 fabric has 3x higher tear strength, 3x higher UHMWPE fibers content, 7x the abrasion resistance. The backing of the fabric is a .75mil recycled polyester film, that makes the fabric extremely waterproof. The backing is reinforced with Ultra CrossPly for enhanced dimensional stability and durability.

 Water Column  20 000mm
 Abrasion resistance  4 400 cycles
 Tear strenth (warp/weft)  103/133 lb
 Weight  130g/m2 (3.85 oz/yd2)

ULTRA 400 X™

This is the fabric we use to reinforce abrasion-prone areas like the bottom section of our backpacks as it has roughly twice the abrasion resistance of ULTRA 200x. It features a woven face made up of 66% 400D UHMWPE fibers and 34% recycled polyester. At a slight weight increase compared to DCF5.0, the Ultra 400 fabric has 2x higher tear strength and 4x higher UHMWPE fibers content by weight. The backing of the fabric is a .75mil recycled polyester film, that makes the fabric extremely waterproof. The backing is reinforced with Ultra CrossPly for enhanced dimensional stability and durability.

 Water Column  20 000mm
 Abrasion resistance  8 800 cycles
 Tear strenth (warp/weft)  115/118 lb
 Weight  168g/m2 (4.95 oz/yd2)
Challenge Sailcloth Ekopak UltraGrid

UltraGrid™

UltraGrid™ is woven with 210d recycled nylon yarn from pre-consumer industrial waste. A double 5mm 200d Ultra™ grid ripstop provides exceptional tear-strength and visual impact. UltraGrid™ is coated with C0 DWR that does not contain fluorocarbons, otherwise known as PFCs. The fabric is finished with a waterproof 1500mm PU backing. Bluesign® Approved.

 Water Column  1 500mm
 Abrasion resistance  1 100 cycles
 Weight  146g/m2 (4.3 oz/yd2)

UltraStretch™

UltraStretch™ is a 4-way stretch mesh woven with the highest quality fibers for performance and longevity.Woven blend of Nylon 6-6, Lycra®, and Ultra-PE. Coated with C6 DWR.  UltraStretch™ has a little more tear resistance thanks to its ripstop grid in Ultra fibers and is lighter than our standard stretch mesh, though it stretches less than our standard stretch mesh fabric so pocket capacity is reduced.

Weight 186g/m2 (5.5 oz/yd2)

Dyneema Composite Fabrics

Dyneema® Composite Fabrics (also known as DCF or, previously, cuben fiber) is simply the most technologically advanced performance fabric for the outdoor industry available on the market today.

It is a family of high-end fabrics originally developed for the sailing industry. It is made up of crossing super-strong Dyneema® fibers (up to x15 times stronger than steel) laminated between two layers of Mylar. This construction gives DCF many advantages:

– It is extremely waterproof
– It has very high UV and chemical resistance
– The fabric does not stretch when wet
– It does not absorb water

DCF 0.51 (CT1E.08)

Update: since 2023, we have phased out this fabric, due to its reduced longevity compared to our standard option (0.75DCF).
It has enough Dyneema fiber content to give it very high tensile strength, while still keeping the weight exptionally down. This version of DCF weighs around half the typical lightweight silnylon available today.

 Water Column 15 000mm
 Tensile strenth (warp/weft)  552 N/5cm
 Tear strenth (warp/weft) 62 N
 Weight 17.3 g/m2 (0.51 oz/yd2)

DCF 0.67 (CT1E.08/C21K.18)

This DCF fabric is, performance wise, similar to DCF 0.51, with an added printed camouflage pattern.

It has enough Dyneema fiber content to give it very high tensile strength, while still keeping the weight exceptionally down. This version of DCF weighs around half the typical lightweight silnylon available today.

 Water Column 15 000mm
 Tensile strenth (warp/weft)  552 N/5cm
 Tear strenth (warp/weft) 62 N
 Weight 22.7 g/m2 (0.67 oz/yd2)

DCF 0.75 (CT2E.08)

This is our standard suggested DCF fabric weight for tents, as for a marginal weight increased compared to 0.51DCF, it has roughly double the longevity.

It has enough Dyneema fiber content to give it very high tensile strength, while still keeping the weight exptionally down. This version of DCF weighs around half the typical lightweight silnylon available today.

This fabric is, performance wise, identical to the 0.8DCF fabric used by other companies.

 Water Column 20 000mm
 Tensile strenth (warp/weft)  911 N/5cm
 Tear strenth (warp/weft) 80 N
 Weight 25.4 g/m2 (0.75 oz/yd2)

DCF 1.0 (CT2K.18)

This fabric is used as floor material for our ultralight tents and our more abrasion resistant stuff sacks and drybags, ditty bags etc. It is very tough for its weight thanks to a higher amount of Dyneema fibers and Mylar layers twice as thick compared to DCF 0.51.

DCF shines in wet environments like marshes or when camping on snow, as we have experienced that the floor of our tents remains much drier as compared to standard PU-coated nylon/polyester, probably because of its higher waterproof rating.

 Water Column 20 000mm
 Tensile strenth (warp/weft)  911 N/5cm
 Tear strenth (warp/weft) 93 N
 Weight 34 g/m2 (1.0 oz/yd2)

DCF 2.92 (CT5K.18/wov.32c)

The DCF2.92 fabric we use in our backpacks and tent reinforcements is made by laminating a layer of 1.43oz DCF for the inner with a 50D plain weave polyester face fabric that increases abrasion resistance and stitch-holding strength.

Despite its extremely light weight, the fabric is exceptionally strong and tear resistant.
This fabric is the perfect choice for ultralight or long distance trips.

Pros:
– The lightest fabric suitable for packs
– Excellent abrasion resistance to weight ratio
– Packs made out of this fabric have taped seam and are therefore more waterproof than packs made out of XPac.

Cons:
– More expensive than XPac alternatives
– Less abrasion resistant than Xpac alternatives

 Water Column 20 000mm
 Tensile strenth (warp/weft)  2150/1920 N/5cm
 Tear strenth (warp/weft) 190 N
 Weight 100 g/m2 (2.92 oz/yd2)

DCF 5.0 (CT9HK.18/wov.6)

The DCF 5.0 fabric we use in our backpacks is made by laminating a layer of 2.15oz DCF for the inner with a 150D plain weave polyester face fabric that increases abrasion resistance and stitch-holding strength.

Despite its light weight, the fabric is exceptionally strong and tear resistant. This fabric is suggested for expeditions and long distance trips where light weight is a priority or if you expect your pack to get a lot of abuse.

Pros:
– Tough and abrasion resistant
– Excellent abrasion resistance to weight ratio
– Packs made out of this fabric have taped seam and are therefore more waterproof than packs made out of XPac.

Cons:
– More expensive than other fabrics
– Heavier than our other options

 Water Column 20 000mm
 Tensile strenth (warp/weft)  2850/2420 N/5cm
 Tear strenth (warp/weft) 300/240 N
 Weight 170 g/m2 (5.0 oz/yd2)

Other Fabrics

These are the other fabrics we use in our products, especially tents and packs.

XPac x21rc

This is a high quality fabric made by Dimension Polyant in the USA. It consists of a 210 denier nylon face fabric with reinforcement X-Ply threads at 22 degrees, which give the fabric is characteristic look. The nylon face is laminated on the inside to a 0.5mm PET layer that makes the fabric completely waterproof.  

Compared to its popular alternative VX21 used by other pack manufacturers, the x21rc is 27% lighter and uses the same 210d nylon face fabric, which makes the x21rc just as abrasion resistant on the outside. By omitting the 50d taffeta backing behind the PET laminate, you get a considerable weight reduction without sacrificing durability. The x21rc uses, in fact, a thicker PET layer on the inside for waterproofing (0.5mil instead of 0.25mil of the VX21 fabric), which is very strong and durable.  

This fabric is the perfect choice for ultralight or long distance trips. 

Pros: 
– Excellent abrasion resistance to weight ratio. Higher abrasion resistance than DCF 2.92 fabric.
– Excellent quality at a more affordable price compared to Dyneema Composite Fabrics (DCF 2.92 and DCF 5.0, see below) 

Cons:
– Seams with this fabric are not taped. If you want your pack to have sealed seams for a higher degree of waterproofing, choose our DCF alternatives.
– Weighs more than other alternatives like DCF 2.92 

 Water Column 140 000mm
Abrasion resistance (ASTM 3884)   900 cycles 
 Tear strenth (warp/fill) 71,2/53,4 N 
 Weight 150 g/m2 (4.4 oz/yd2)

Stretch Mesh

This durable mesh fabric is made of a Nylon/Spandex blend with incredible 4-way stretch. Used for front and side pockets in our packs. We used a more durable and a slightly heavier version of the stretch mesh fabric compared to other companies, to ensure longevity. 260g/m2

3D Spacer Mesh

This fabric is used on the backside of our shoulder straps and hipbelts. It is 3mm thick and provides additional cushion, prevents slippage and allows your sweat to be absorbed and dry faster thus increasing your comfort.

Bug netting (Noseeum Mesh)

This super fine and lightweight bug netting is used in our tents and is composed of super-small holes that block even the smallest bugs.
The fabric is made of 15D Nylon and weighs only 22.7g/m2 (0.67oz)

EVA-foam

We use 8mm EVA-foam as padding for shoulder straps and hipbelts and 9mm for lumbar areas and back panel area on the Framus pack. Our EVA-foam is specifically made for us by the EVA-foam manufacturer following our requirements and specifications, in order to be suited for backpacking. It is the perfect balance of thickness, density, hardness and bounce rate. We use a denser foam (70kg/m3) compared to most other companies, to ensure long lasting padding.

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