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Thread: Roadcrafter Zipper

  1. #1
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    Roadcrafter Zipper

    Howdy, my right leg zipper is jammed in the open position and I can't get it down. I contacted stich and they sent me gratis a kit and some instructions but still no joy. This is a pita. It jammed a couple times before but i was always able to get it down. This time not and broke the pull off trying to plier it down. The nice folks at stich say "or you can send it back and we'll do it."

    Have I had too much tea? Or is this nuts sending an $800 suit back to the mothership because of what I'd call a design flaw. Guess I'm pissed about the downtime AND the $. Sorry, my favorite bike is an airhead and I expect things to work or be field repairable. Aerostich is leaving me broke down beside the ditch.

    Others? Sorry for the rant.

    And of course, any tips on how to keep this happening in the future? This time, the failure happened at home. Next time, I guess I'd better keep duct tape in the kit to keep from flying with an exposed leg.

  2. #2
    Registered User RINTY's Avatar
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    Some alteration service shops do work on outdoor gear, and have zipper experts. There may be one that is local to you.
    Rinty

    "When you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there."

  3. #3
    BobFV1
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    Quote Originally Posted by greyfox View Post
    what I'd call a design flaw.
    Characterizing the Aerostitch zipper as having a "design flaw" based on a single failure is overreach, IMHO. Having been around 'stitch suits for quite a while. my anecdotal observation is that there is no design flaw with their zipper. As with any mechanical device, there are bound to be isolated failures.

    Since you have had previous issues with the zipper and since, by your account, you forced it with a pair of pliers, I think that you need to send it back for inspection now or else you pretty certainly will have more problems in the future.

    Good luck.

  4. #4
    BMW MOV Muriel's Avatar
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    What caused the zipper to jam? Was it the lining? Re the future, if it was the lining, make sure the lining is pulled back and not in the way of the zipper teeth.

    Muriel
    BMW MOA Secretary
    '07 F650 '12 F650 twin
    Running on One Cylinder - except when running on two

  5. #5
    Registered User 36654's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greyfox View Post
    The nice folks at stich say "or you can send it back and we'll do it."

    Guess I'm pissed about the downtime AND the $. Sorry, my favorite bike is an airhead and I expect things to work or be field repairable. Aerostich is leaving me broke down beside the ditch.
    Well, I'm not sure I've ever heard of a "field repairable" zipper, but they might exist. It's sorta like bending a tooth on a gear, the initial damage will inflict more damage each time the teeth mesh.

    IMHO, I'm exceedingly happy whenever a company offers to repair a product in this disposable society. You might be inconvenienced for a bit, but that is life.
    Cave contents: 99 R11RS, 2013 Toyota Tacoma, 03 Simplicity Legacy, 97 Stihl FS75, Dewalt DW625 & DW744

  6. #6
    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 36654 View Post
    Well, I'm not sure I've ever heard of a "field repairable" zipper, but they might exist. It's sorta like bending a tooth on a gear, the initial damage will inflict more damage each time the teeth mesh.
    Aerostitch field repair is for the zipper slide. Aerostitch has (had?) two different repair kits that included new slides of various sizes and some snaps, too. I've used about 20% of the supplied components over the last 10 years. Which reminds me... I need to change the main slide on my suit. Now where did I put that repair kit.

  7. #7
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    BobFV1 is correct

    My characterization of my zipper problem as a design failure is a bit of an exaggeration typed on the occasion of a frustratingly cool and clear morning with a suit I can't wear. With the exception of that zipper, i love my stich. Arghhh would probably been more appropriate.

    Maybe my plea is for a more idiot/foolproof zipper architecture. I suspect aerostich uses the best available. I just wish there was better. I wonder if NASA uses YKK zippers in their flightsuits?

    Appreciate all the suggestions.

    jim

  8. #8
    TravelsWithBarley.com
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    The same thing happened to my brand new Stich after three weeks of use. I called and was told it would be three weeks before they could work my repair in. I sent the suit in with a nice note explaining that I had been waiting since November for the snow to go away only to be down again because of a zipper. (Insert unhappy face here.) I also included a pound of gourmet coffee so they'd be caffeinated and work thru that backlog quickly. My suit came back with a new zipper in three days. And an explanation that a new employee had installed it incorrectly.

    It's hard to be cross with a company that tries so hard to make things right.

    Pete
    '07 R1200GS for solo rides
    '10 R1200GSA with Hannigan dual sport sidecar for rides with Barley

  9. #9
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Muriel View Post
    What caused the zipper to jam? Was it the lining? Re the future, if it was the lining, make sure the lining is pulled back and not in the way of the zipper teeth.

    Muriel
    I have had the thin lining material jam a few times in the zipper of my Roadcrafter pants. The slack in the lining material, and the fact that it is very thin, allow this. I solved the problem quite easily. I applied "seam sealer" - the type designed for tent seams and other similar applications. Two coats spread about 1/2" wide right beside the zipper stiching makes the lining material a little stiffer and it lies flat so it doesn't get caught in the zipper. I did this about 5 years ago and it was fine until this spring when it seemed to have worn off one small spot near the bottom. I reapplied seam sealer to that small area and expect it to go another 5 or so years. By then I might replace the suit with another Roadcrafter.

    I have had no problems whatsoever with the zipper teeth. Only lining stuck in the zipper, in which cases finesse worked where gorilla tactics probably would not have.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
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  10. #10
    Registered User RINTY's Avatar
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    My favourite ski jacket, a Serac, has a YKK zipper that I have to "lead" with a finger, or it will jam.

    Don't ask me how I do this...

    It's the thin lining material, that Paul mentions, that does it.
    Rinty

    "When you don't know where you're going, any road will get you there."

  11. #11
    Pusser's Pyrate Society Zygmund's Avatar
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    Sent my 8 year old Darien for some upgrades and they called me to verify the repairs requested after they received it. We went over the upgrades and charges on the phone and agreed on the cost, then they told me it would be a couple weeks. My suit was on the doorstep in 3 days after the phone call!
    '02 R1150RT

  12. #12
    otherwise
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    I've added 3M Decorative Tape to the lining of several
    pieces of clothing, including the BMW one-piece rainsuit,
    to prevent the lining from jamming the zipper during
    a hurried roadside costume change. The tape is available
    at hardware stores and has good flex and adhesion.
    mXa

  13. #13
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    same thing happened to my stitch. it is 8 years old though. i don't unzip it all the up(leave it an inch or two from the top) that seems to work. if i am ever in the area, i will stop and ask for a fix.

  14. #14
    RIDEOREGON
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    I've owned two stitches. A one-piece and a two-piece Roadcrafter. The zipper pulls have broken on both of them. In 58 years those are the ONLY zipper pulls I've ever broken. ......(not counting the zipper pull on my luggage that was officially broken by United Airlines baggage handlers). My one-piece frequently hangs up the zipper on the right leg at the top. Not sure what causes it to hang up--kiinda hard to see down there when putting the suit on. Aerostitch builds the suits, but it's some other company that manufactures the zippers that they use.

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