Popular on premium apparel, tents, sleeping bags, luggage, and backpacks, double zippers add a level of versatility to any product. But what exactly are they and how can you use them to your advantage? Read on to find out.
What is a Double Zipper
Sometimes referred to as two-way zippers or dual zippers, a double zipper is one that includes two sliders. This allows the zipper to open or close in two directions, which can be especially useful on extremely long zippers. For example, to make it much easier to get in and out of a tent, the doors typically utilize double zippers that help facilitate exiting and entering. Similarly, a two-way zipper on a piece of luggage makes it faster and easier to open as well, allowing speedier access to the interior.
Generally speaking, there are three types of double zippers that can be found on consumer products. The two-way “O” type zipper feature sliders that come together on the track and meet when the item is closed. These are typically found on products like backpacks or tents and in order to open the zipper, you simply pull the sliders away from each other. These types of zippers are also found on the underarm vents of select Triple F.A.T. Goose Parkas, such as the Eldridge, Eberly II, and Norden.
Alternatively, a two-way separating zipper is engineered in such a way that the sliders meet end-to-end at the bottom of the jacket and face in opposite directions from one another. This is the most common style of double zipper and the type that is used in all 3/4 length and full-length Triple F.A.T. Goose parkas. In order to open this style of two-way zipper, either the top slider must be pulled all the way down to the bottom, or the bottom zipper is pulled all the way to the top. This design doesn’t allow the zipper to be completely undone at the top, however, instead, requiring that both sliders be moved all the way to the bottom in order to release the zipper pin.
How to Use a Double Zipper
Using an “O” type zipper, like the ones found on luggage or a tent, is very simple and straight forward. Because the sliders stay connected to the zipper track at all times, you simply have to pull them in either direction as needed. When the sliders reach the end of the track they remain connected. And when they’re ready to be closed again, the sliders are pulled toward one another until they meet.
That isn’t the case with a two-way separating zipper however, as this style of zipper requires a bit of extra effort on the user’s part in order to function properly. When wearing a jacket, parka, or another piece of apparel that uses a double zipper, the most important thing to remember is that the zipper pin must be inserted into both sliders and firmly locked in place at the bottom of the second slider. If it is not locked into that position, the zipper isn’t likely to close properly or will come off the zipper track.
It is important to keep in mind is that any high-quality zipper is designed to open and close with a minimal amount of effort. Don’t try to force a zipper if it becomes stuck or if it isn’t moving as smoothly along the track as it should. Instead, try disconnecting the pin from the slider and reinserting it into position, carefully locking it into place. When properly seated in the slider, the zipper should operate as expected.
It is also important to remember to pull the slider slowly, both while opening and closing. This helps prevent the zipper from getting caught on the fabric of the jacket, causing the slider to get stuck or going off track. If the fabric does get caught in the slider, pull it out very slowly, taking care to not damage the material or the zipper itself.
Why Use a Double Zipper?
A two-way zipper can add extra functionality and versatility to a garment. How exactly does it do that? For starters, after zipping a jacket completely closed, being able to unzip it from the bottom adds extra breathability and increased temperature control. This gives the wearer the ability to slide open the zipper to the point where excess warmth can be vented out of the bottom of the jacket, making it more comfortable to wear.
Other benefits include the ability to provide more mobility and hip room in an otherwise snug-fitting jacket. Garments designed for use in cold weather are often form-fitting in order to keep warm air inside, but this style of design can also impede motion when taking part in certain activities. Unzipping the bottom slider releases tension in the hem, making it easier to move while hiking, skiing, or snowshoeing for example.
The two-way zippers used on Triple F.A.T. Goose parkas also provide additional added value. For instance, our double zippers make it easier for our customers to access the interior pocket of their jackets without exposing themselves to frigid temperatures. By partially unzipping the jacket from the top, it is possible to reach items stored in the internal pockets. And by partially unzipping the jacket from the bottom, it is possible to access the pants pockets without the need to unzip the jacket in its entirety, thus keeping the warm air trapped inside and cold air out.
All Zipped Up
Essentially, that’s everything you need to know about double zippers in a nutshell. While they may seem confusing and unnecessary at first, once you’ve experienced the extra versatility that they bring to a jacket, you’re likely to appreciate the options that they deliver. In the end, it's all about enhanced comfort and performance when you need it most.