Aero Alpaca vs. Lochcarron wool lining warmth

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by Andrew Putnam, Jun 17, 2019.

  1. Andrew Putnam

    Andrew Putnam Familiar Face

    I have the chance to get an Aero HWM but it has an Alpaca lining. The last one had a heavy wool lining which I suppose might have been Lochcarron before they started labelling as such and heatwise I never found the lining it too warm here in Melbourne, Australia. Sometimes it actually could have been a little warmer during this time of year.
    My worry is Alpaca wool will be significantly warmer (I haven't actually worn Alpaca before) and as such will be too warm to wear but in the coldest of times. I have seen a thread on this topic in the forum here where someone said Alpaca lining is probably too warm beyond 15C.
    So the sort of questions in regard to Alpaca linings specifically that I have are for instance- at what temp does it become too warm? or how does it compare to Lochcarron wool linings?
    Any experience given on this subject would be greatly appreciated.
  2. Guppy

    Guppy My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Cleveland, OH
    While alpaca is warmer, I don't think it's significantly warmer by itself. In cold weather coats, it's not the lining, it's the insulation. The outer shell serves as a wind break, keeping the wind from robbing you of your body heat. The air inside the jacket warms up through your body heat and keeps you warmer. If air can escape through gaps, you'll cool off. Hence storm cuffs, scarves, and cinched waists.

    To keep warmer, you need to trap that air close to your body, which is where the lining comes into play. If the lining has an insulating layer behind it, be it wool, polyester, or thinsulate or goose down, that's going to be a warm jacket for seriously cold weather. There's a difference between the wool used in insulation and the wool used as the face of the inner lining. Most Aero jackets are lined, but not insulated. But this is not necessarily a problem for people who want to wear an uninsulated Aero in cold weather; it just means they need to layer a sweater under, and the sweater will provide the insulation rather than having it integrated into the jacket.

    Alpaca is probably the warmest of the three usual lining options (cotton drill, wool, alpaca) but isn't particularly insulated. Warmer options than alpaca would be the quilted rayon (which has some insulation under the quilting) and warmest of all would be shearling lined, the sheep's wool pile being a very effective insulation.
  3. Monitor


    ^ This! ^

    Also, to add my own experience; while alpaca will be warmer than Lochcarron, it won't make a considerable difference. Or rather, you won't get much more - or less - wear out of your jacket, regardless of which lining you choose.

    So in short, I'd pick the lining that I visually prefer.
  4. Carlos840

    Carlos840 I'll Lock Up

    I don't fully agree with the above posts.
    I own two Aero Bootleggers, one lined with cotton tartan, one lined with the heaviest wool tartan (strome). Both a made from CXL HH.
    At both extremes, either very cold or very hot, (lets define very cold as below freezing and very hot as above 25c/77F) i agree that the lining will not change very much. You will be cold with either lining at -5c/23F and you will be sweating in both at 30c/86F.
    But, there is IMO a noticeable difference in how comfortable either lining will be in the 5c to 20c (41F to 68F) range.
    I can go out wearing only a thin jumper in my strome lined jacket when it is 5c and feel fine. I would be cold i was wearing the cotton lined one.
    The same way, if i was to go out today (18c/65F) wearing the strome lined jacket i would be a sweaty mess within 5 minutes, whereas i can wear my cotton lined one comfortably up to 20c/68F.

    I have never been to Melbourne, but i can tell you if i was going there i wouldn't dream of taking a wool lined jacket, even less so if it was lined with alpaca.
    Saying that, i do run warm... If you are the kind of person wearing a down jacket in June, you might be ok!
    torfjord, Monitor and Andrew Putnam like this.
  5. Peter Bowden

    Peter Bowden Practically Family

    united kingdom
    Did you have to layer with your wool-lined Highwayman?That would mean you could layer less with a jacket with an alpaca lining.I don't think you would find alpaca significantly warmer than a heavy wool lining though.I have alpaca lined jackets and find they can be a little itch-inducing with just a long sleeved shirt underneath but those days are rare.
    Andrew Putnam likes this.
  6. Andrew Putnam

    Andrew Putnam Familiar Face

    Hey thanks! Haha- you might reconsider that wool lined jacket if you were here. It is very cold at the moment. Melbourne is known for it's volatile weather: yes, it can be swelteringly hot, but also it is more often cold. Many times in the past few months I've been very grateful for an insulated horsehide jacket that I own. That jacket is actually significantly warmer than what the Aero wool lined one was. Now I think of it, that isn't a bad reference point to consider the Alpaca one from. Without the insulation I can't seeing it being as warm as that one either and that one is very useful in Melbourne. For example over the next week the forecast has a minimum of 3c and max 15c most days won't get over 12c
  7. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

    Andrew, don't get alpaca in Melbourne. I have a half-belt with wool tartan lining, it is light stuff and probably no warmer than cotton. If I could choose any lining at all for Melbourne it would be cotton. Durability. For the few days it is cold here I generally stick on an overcoat and wear a sweater. Leather is bloody useless in the cold and the heat.

    I would also be sure to get a medium weight leather such as goat or Vicenza. Much, much more versatile. I have tried wearing 3oz leather many times over the decades and I never get more than three or four weeks a year of wear out of those jackets. I would avoid anything heavier than 2.2 to 2.5oz in Melbourne, if you want something you can wear often.
    Peacoat and Andrew Putnam like this.
  8. Peter Mackin

    Peter Mackin Practically Family

    I’ve had jackets from aero lined with,Harris tweed,alpaca,tartan ,cotton drill & moleskin.In my experience the moleskin is the warmest liner,just don’t get it in the sleeves,,a bugger to get on and remove unless wearing a cotton shirt or tee shirt
    Andrew Putnam likes this.
  9. Peacoat

    Peacoat Bartender Bartender

    South of Nashville
    There have been several threads on the warmth of Alpaca lining in the past, although not recently. One of the advantages of being a member here since 2006, is that I remember the old threads (sometimes) and know what to look for. Below is a link to a search I did for Alpaca Linings in the title of the thread only. I found nothing when I did a search for Lochcarron Lining. Of course the spelling may be off.[title_only]=1&c[node]=4

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