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Rejected Arc Teryx review on Alpha SV gloves
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By Tony T.
From Denver, CO
Nov 22, 2012
Getting up the Great Dihedral on Hallet Peak, RMNP.
Hey all. So, I recently had a chance to try out a pair of Alpha SV gloves that I got as a gift last year. Needless to say, it was a very pleasant gift at $270. I was planning to use them for ice climbing and general mountaineering.

Anyway, I took them out for a little practice scramble/hike in winter-ish conditions in Colorado. It was sunny, but windy (gusting around 40-50mph), bringing the windchill around the high teens. I thought that these gloves could handle that much at the very least. I don't usually suffer from cold hands or poor circulation, so they should have been more than adequate.

Well, I was extremely wrong. These gloves performed so poorly in almost every aspect that they claim to dominate. First, they simply are not that warm. Arc Teryx doesn't claim them to be the warmest gloves they make, as that honor goes to the Zenta. Regardless, at $270, they should be at least warm enough to handle highly aerobic activity in 0-25F temps. The fleece liner was already crushed after one day out, bringing down it's insulation abilities. My little fingers on both hands were almost numb with cold.

Second, the "incredible" dexterity is severely hindered by a couple of things. The stiffness of the leather/pre-curved hand made it difficult to even keep a hold of my trekking poles. By no means do I have issues with grip strength, and I've never had issues in any other glove up until now.

Useful dexterity was further impeded by the incredibly slick nature of the leather. I have no idea how one would feel comfortable hanging on to ice tools with this slick leather. I wasn't expecting OR Alibi sticky leather, but I certainly wasn't expecting an oil slick. Not only is the leather slick, but it's weak. After just one day there are pretty deep scuffs and scrapes on a few parts of the palm.

Sure, they're seam taped and water proof. Neat. That was about the only upside I could find to these. So, I decided to write a review on AT's website. It wasn't the first negative review of these gloves, but it was definitely going to be more descriptive than the others. I sort of expect more from a glove that is this pricey, and I really dislike feeling deceived about a product. I would hate for this misfortune to befall another climber. I took about 20 minutes to write it out, and then submitted it. A few days later, I received an e-mail stating:

"Your opinion is very important to us and the Arc'teryx community. We appreciate you taking the time to write a review on Alpha SV Glove. Unfortunately your review did not meet our guidelines for posting on our site.

We encourage you to review our guidelines and resubmit your review on Alpha SV Glove.

Thanks for being an active member of the Arc'teryx community.

Sincerely,
The Arc'teryx Team"

The original review I wrote was worded a little better than this one, but I most certainly didn't run afoul of the review guidelines. Anyway, I wrote back asking for clarification, and I haven't received anything in a week so I figured I would post here.

I hope this helps.

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By Tony T.
From Denver, CO
Nov 22, 2012
Getting up the Great Dihedral on Hallet Peak, RMNP.
Also, the things I know already that don't need re-iterating:

I know how to use SnoSeal to achieve a tackier/stickier leather for ice climbing.

Leather breaks in and becomes softer. It's likely that the gloves will become easier to manipulate once that happens.

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By Ray Pinpillage
From West Egg
Nov 22, 2012
Middle
What are their stated "guidelines" for posting a review?

ETA:

Here is Arc'teryx's review policy

"Arc'teryx values your feedback!

When writing your review, please consider the following guidelines:
•Focus on the product and your individual experience using it
•Provide details about why you liked or disliked a product
•All submitted reviews are subject to the terms set forth in our Terms of Use

We reserve the right not to post your review if it contains any of the following types of content or violates other guidelines:
•Obscenities, discriminatory language, or other language not suitable for a public forum
•Advertisements, “spam” content, or references to other products, offers, or websites
•Email addresses, URLs, phone numbers, physical addresses or other forms of contact information
•Critical or spiteful comments on other reviews posted on the page or their authors

In addition, if you wish to share feedback with us about product selection, pricing, ordering, delivery or other customer service issues, please do not submit this feedback through a product review. Instead, contact us directly.

Enjoy writing your review!"

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By Ray Pinpillage
From West Egg
Nov 22, 2012
Middle
I think the problem is that your review centers around the cost of the gloves. Regardless of the performance, Arc doesn't want the focus of the review to be price. Take out the price to performance complaint and resubmit the review.

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By Tradoholic
Nov 22, 2012
Wait...$270 gloves!

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By Tony T.
From Denver, CO
Nov 22, 2012
Getting up the Great Dihedral on Hallet Peak, RMNP.
I don't think it's the price that I'm particularly harping on, rather their claims versus my experience. Every time I reference the price I'm merely categorizing the glove as being in the highest-end category there exists for gloves. This category should include only the best the glove world has to offer, and I should expect nothing less than exceptional from a glove in this category. Further, I don't think I mentioned the cost in the original review, but I can't figure that out since they won't reply to my inquiries.

Regardless, here is what they claim in the description from the website:

"Our revolutionary Tri-Dex™ Technology patterns each finger individually for exceptional dexterity and a precision touch. N80p-X GORE-TEX® fabric has a durable outer surface to increase longevity. The inner glove liner is constructed of high loft fleece insulation that maximizes warmth and is removable for a quicker dry time. Leather reinforcement areas on the palm and fingers are durable and long lasting. An external wrist cinch with ladder lock buckle adjusts easily and is secure. Removable wrist leashes prevent gloves from dropping when not in use. A wide gauntlet fits easily over any jacket sleeve.
Master of Alpine Situations

The Alpha SV Glove is built for the most extreme conditions. Removable wrist leashes prevent a critical loss, leather reinforcements provide protection from rock and secure grip on ice tools , wide gauntlet fits over any insulated jacket sleeve and a one handed wrist cinch secures glove position.

Tri-Dex™ Technology

Tri-Dex™ Technology uses a three-lobe pattern to individually map a three-dimensional shape for each digit. An unparalleled advancement in dexterity , the technology also uses micro seam technology to reduce bulk, enhance comfort.

Durability

N80p-X GORE-TEX® fabric has exceptional abrasion resistance. Engineered to deliver the highest level of windproof waterproof/breathable protection, this smooth surfaced textile readily sheds precipitation, ice and reduces overall wear and tear. Leather reinforced palms and fingers are durable and long lasting.
Liners

The inner fleece liner is a hi-loft Polartec® Wind Pro® textile with high wind resistance, low stretch, exceptional warmth and breathability to keep working hands dry in cold environments. Removable liners are easy care: remove them for drying; machine wash to reduce odour. Velcro® interface holds the liner in position, maximizing comfort and dexterity."

I bold-faced the important descriptors that I found to be entirely inaccurate.

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By Ryan N
From Palo Alto
Nov 22, 2012
RJN
I have a pair and have had them for two seasons. Love em. My favorite feature they don't seem to sell is the fact that in essence their just a hard shell glove. I use different liners for different conditions. I think your problem is that you got an expensive glove only to find out that its not a fix it for your cold hands. Bottom line everything helps, but nothing works perfectly for every condition. And you think it's weird that arcteryx would let you post a bad review on their website? Who'd have thought that?

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By Tony T.
From Denver, CO
Nov 22, 2012
Getting up the Great Dihedral on Hallet Peak, RMNP.
Ryan N wrote:
I have a pair and have had them for two seasons. Love em. My favorite feature they don't seem to sell is the fact that in essence their just a hard shell glove. I use different liners for different conditions. I think your problem is that you got an expensive glove only to find out that its not a fix it for your cold hands. Bottom line everything helps, but nothing works perfectly for every condition. And you think it's weird that arcteryx would let you post a bad review on their website? Who'd have thought that?


I'm definitely familiar with the concept of shells and liners and the interchangeability of each. I have created quite a few personal systems from different shells and liners.

As I stated in the original post, I don't have issues with cold/numb hands. Other gloves I use/have used are: OR Alibi and Alpine Alibi, BD Punisher, OR Alti, MtnHdware Typhoon, and the BD Soloist.

I agree that as a shell it's a neat idea, but don't you find those seams in between the fingers to be a little rough? I'm genuinely curious what you use yours for and how they look after two years? The abrasions mine received after just one day out, admittedly with some gloved 3rd class scrambling, make my pocket-book flutter to think about rope work and handling sharp pointy things (screws, tools, 'pons) in the cold.

They do allow negative reviews on their site, and the other ones on there are far less detailed. One is a pretty inarticulate driveling mess. I would think that the holy AT would allow for some more verbose and constructive criticism.

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By Ray Pinpillage
From West Egg
Nov 22, 2012
Middle
Tony T. wrote:
I don't think it's the price that I'm particularly harping on, rather their claims versus my experience. Every time I reference the price I'm merely categorizing the glove as being in the highest-end category there exists for gloves. This category should include only the best the glove world has to offer, and I should expect nothing less than exceptional from a glove in this category. Further, I don't think I mentioned the cost in the original review, but I can't figure that out since they won't reply to my inquiries. Regardless, here is what they claim in the description from the website: "Our revolutionary Tri-Dex™ Technology patterns each finger individually for exceptional dexterity and a precision touch. N80p-X GORE-TEX® fabric has a durable outer surface to increase longevity. The inner glove liner is constructed of high loft fleece insulation that maximizes warmth and is removable for a quicker dry time. Leather reinforcement areas on the palm and fingers are durable and long lasting. An external wrist cinch with ladder lock buckle adjusts easily and is secure. Removable wrist leashes prevent gloves from dropping when not in use. A wide gauntlet fits easily over any jacket sleeve. Master of Alpine Situations The Alpha SV Glove is built for the most extreme conditions. Removable wrist leashes prevent a critical loss, leather reinforcements provide protection from rock and secure grip on ice tools , wide gauntlet fits over any insulated jacket sleeve and a one handed wrist cinch secures glove position. Tri-Dex™ Technology Tri-Dex™ Technology uses a three-lobe pattern to individually map a three-dimensional shape for each digit. An unparalleled advancement in dexterity , the technology also uses micro seam technology to reduce bulk, enhance comfort. Durability N80p-X GORE-TEX® fabric has exceptional abrasion resistance. Engineered to deliver the highest level of windproof waterproof/breathable protection, this smooth surfaced textile readily sheds precipitation, ice and reduces overall wear and tear. Leather reinforced palms and fingers are durable and long lasting. Liners The inner fleece liner is a hi-loft Polartec® Wind Pro® textile with high wind resistance, low stretch, exceptional warmth and breathability to keep working hands dry in cold environments. Removable liners are easy care: remove them for drying; machine wash to reduce odour. Velcro® interface holds the liner in position, maximizing comfort and dexterity." I bold-faced the important descriptors that I found to be entirely inaccurate.


Well great, you've highlighted your experience here. Your review wasn't very constructive and had an especially negative tone. A single use review is pretty much worthless and you admit you think the leather will break in invalidating one of your complaints.

I don't know why you would expect Arc'teryx to put it on their site. Although I'm a little surprised they even bothered to tell you they were rejecting it. Quite honestly I think the review you put up here came off whiny and inexperienced.

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By bearbreeder
Nov 22, 2012
post up the review at other sites .... and other retailers

dead bird likes to control its message IMO ... only glowing good reviews ... how else can you justify the price ;)

the truth is that its generally no better or worse than any other decent brand ... just more $$$$

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By Ray Pinpillage
From West Egg
Nov 22, 2012
Middle
bearbreeder wrote:
...the truth is that its generally no better or worse than any other decent brand ... just more $$$$


As far as gloves go that certainly is the case. MHW gloves are a much better value and performance wise probably better too.

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By Tony T.
From Denver, CO
Nov 22, 2012
Getting up the Great Dihedral on Hallet Peak, RMNP.
Ray Pinpillage wrote:
I don't know why you would expect Arc'teryx to put it on their site. Although I'm a little surprised they even bothered to tell you they were rejecting it. Quite honestly I think the review you put up here came off whiny and inexperienced.


...like I said in my OP. I took a lot more time in my rejected review to make sure I was providing constructive feedback on how they could improve the glove. I have participated in pretty extensive product testing for outdoor gear manufacturers before, and I know what they need to see in a review. I figured a company with as much integrity as AT purports to have would be interested in honest feedback, and not just fall back on the inexcusable censorship that you seem ready to excuse as what's to be expected from companies these days. I had no idea they would reject it so I had no reason to believe that I should save a copy. After all, look at the other review gems that they allow on their site for these gloves:
"very dissapointed: February 15, 2012
kipp4r
From: UK
Age:45-54
After spending so much money on gloves in the past to get the right sort of glove I thought i had found the perfect glove for the job with these. So i was so dissapointed to find they did not keep my hands warm at all in weather that was not the coldest. the fit was ok but my fingers could not withstand the cold."

The guy can't even spell correctly.

"Weird fit: January 8, 2012
Asom
TOP 50 CONTRIBUTOR
From: Denmark
First of all I was very excited about this product, and bought them instead of some Hestra gloves.
I took the chance and ordered them without being able to try them on.
Some fingers is perfect, while others are too short.
Out in the field the leather get wet, even when new. And they are really not that warm when it's freezing.
When active they quickly become too warm. But I think it's a generel issue with GORE-TEX in gloves.
The innergloves are useless alone, so the only good thing about the ability to take them out, is when they are wet and need to dry.
To make better:
Better fit
A usable innerglove (Wool or fiber instead of fleece)
More durable leather"

These are just two of the negative reviews. There are a few others you should check out.

As for the negative tone and being whiny and inexperienced, do you think my tone might have been slightly soured after getting a rather inadequate response from AT? I would have been happy with them actually providing me specific instances in which my my original review did not meet their holy guidelines. Again, the original one I submitted, not the slightly angrier and more disdainful one posted here.

Inexperienced? I'm not going to fall for that terrible attempt at baiting me to somehow qualify myself to you. Look at the previous post I made for the comprehensive list of gloves I have used or currently use. I'm not new to mountaineering or ice climbing, and I know what to expect from equipment that is designed and sold to be used during those activities.

Whiny? You're damn right. Sorry, not everyone can afford to just be underwhelmed with a $270 pair of gloves. Some of us don't quite have access to the wealth that would allow such a blase outlook.

I agree with Bearbreeder about AT being very controlling of their image and message. That's why I'm posting this. I don't like companies deceiving consumers, especially when it's a company with such overblown hype as AT.

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By Ryan N
From Palo Alto
Nov 22, 2012
RJN
I use the venta's under the shell of the SV, it works great. Also have a couple smaller fleece only liners. I never use them as a shell without a liner. I'm pretty sure, even though there expensive, arcteryx wouldn't recommend climbing rock with them. The key to making any glove last is to take care of it I.e. wash or condition regularly.

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By Ray Pinpillage
From West Egg
Nov 22, 2012
Middle
Tony T. wrote:
Inexperienced? I'm not going to fall for that terrible attempt at baiting me to somehow qualify myself to you.


In addition to being a sourpuss your reading comprehension lacks.

It's Thanksgiving, be thankful and less upset.


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By Jarmland
Nov 22, 2012
Maybe the problem was that you mentioned that OR glove for reference? The guidelines did say you can't mention other brands, right?

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By 20 kN
From Hawaii
Nov 22, 2012
Tony T. wrote:
Hey all. So, I recently had a chance to try out a pair of Alpha SV gloves that I got as a gift last year. Needless to say, it was a very pleasant gift at $270. I was planning to use them for ice climbing and general mountaineering. Anyway, I took them out for a little practice scramble/hike in winter-ish conditions in Colorado. It was sunny, but windy (gusting around 40-50mph), bringing the windchill around the high teens. I thought that these gloves could handle that much at the very least. I don't usually suffer from cold hands or poor circulation, so they should have been more than adequate. Well, I was extremely wrong. These gloves performed so poorly in almost every aspect that they claim to dominate. First, they simply are not that warm. Arc Teryx doesn't claim them to be the warmest gloves they make, as that honor goes to the Zenta. Regardless, at $270, they should be at least warm enough to handle highly aerobic activity in 0-25F temps. The fleece liner was already crushed after one day out, bringing down it's insulation abilities. My little fingers on both hands were almost numb with cold. Second, the "incredible" dexterity is severely hindered by a couple of things. The stiffness of the leather/pre-curved hand made it difficult to even keep a hold of my trekking poles. By no means do I have issues with grip strength, and I've never had issues in any other glove up until now. Useful dexterity was further impeded by the incredibly slick nature of the leather. I have no idea how one would feel comfortable hanging on to ice tools with this slick leather. I wasn't expecting OR Alibi sticky leather, but I certainly wasn't expecting an oil slick. Not only is the leather slick, but it's weak. After just one day there are pretty deep scuffs and scrapes on a few parts of the palm. Sure, they're seam taped and water proof. Neat. That was about the only upside I could find to these. So, I decided to write a review on AT's website. It wasn't the first negative review of these gloves, but it was definitely going to be more descriptive than the others. I sort of expect more from a glove that is this pricey, and I really dislike feeling deceived about a product. I would hate for this misfortune to befall another climber. I took about 20 minutes to write it out, and then submitted it. A few days later, I received an e-mail stating: "Your opinion is very important to us and the Arc'teryx community. We appreciate you taking the time to write a review on Alpha SV Glove. Unfortunately your review did not meet our guidelines for posting on our site. We encourage you to review our guidelines and resubmit your review on Alpha SV Glove. Thanks for being an active member of the Arc'teryx community. Sincerely, The Arc'teryx Team" The original review I wrote was worded a little better than this one, but I most certainly didn't run afoul of the review guidelines. Anyway, I wrote back asking for clarification, and I haven't received anything in a week so I figured I would post here. I hope this helps.
The real question is who pays $270 for a pair of gloves?!?!?
Anyway, welcome to the world of censored review sites. Now you know why 100% of the reviews for 100% of the products on manufacturers' websites are always positive. They just dont allow the negative ones to show up! This is nothing new. That is why you dont use a manufacturer's self-acclaimed review system to determine your opinion on a product. Use a third party site.

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By bearbreeder
Nov 22, 2012
Tony T. wrote:
I agree with Bearbreeder about AT being very controlling of their image and message. That's why I'm posting this. I don't like companies deceiving consumers, especially when it's a company with such overblown hype as AT.



IMO dead bird doesnt care about people like you ... i think that they care about 2 types of people ... their sponsored athletes ... and those who drink the yuppie koolaid that its the "best' and will somehow magically make them "better"

theres nothing you can do in a dead bird that you cant also do with any other decent brand ...

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By Brian Scoggins
From Eugene, OR
Nov 22, 2012
If you explicitly referenced the OR Alibi in your review, then that's where you ran afoul of their terms. Remove explicit references to other manufacturers (save that for an mgear.com or backcountry.com review) and you should be ok.

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By APBT1976
Nov 22, 2012
Black Dike 12/25/11
I also bought these gloves last year for ice climbing. The way they market them i figured they would be a perfect cold as balls big warm glove.

Short end of a long story they sat in the bottom of my pack all season and will not even make it into my pack this season. To be honest i am gonna let a buddy that wants to learn to ice climb and needs the full quiver of ice gear use/have them. Not a bad glove just far from a good glove and not anything as they market them.

In retrospect though i should have been able to figure all this out on my own without having to purchase them.

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By OldManRiver
From Cottonwood Heights, UT
Nov 26, 2012
Red Rock, Cannibal crag
i posted a review on there that noted the gloves aren't warm in very cold conditions.

They've performed well for me in anything down to the teens, where they get a little cold.

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By Kai Larson
From Sandy, Utah
Nov 27, 2012
Tour Ronde North Face
I'm also not a fan of these gloves. Not very warm, and the buckle/elastic adjustment thingie on the back doesn't stay fastened. I can't tell that they are any more dexterous than other similar gloves.

I paid full price for them. Wish I hadn't.

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By Cale Hoopes
From Sammamish, WA
Nov 27, 2012
Profile Icon
Ryan N's post speaks volumes. I own 2 pairs of these that have never had their liners in.

It's a great idea to have a GoreTex shell that's as good as my Arcteryx jackets. This basically simplified my glove systems on Denali as I'd just roll through different liners and cover them with these shells when the weather warranted it (which thankfully, it only warranted it a few times).

You can get many better liner options which can change the gloves quite a bit.

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By Cale Hoopes
From Sammamish, WA
Nov 27, 2012
Profile Icon
Oh and these can be had much cheaper when they go on sale.

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