Bomber Gear

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Bomber Gear

Postby Dangerjudy » Jan 14, 2008 6:53 pm

Rumors are circulating in the paddling world that Bomber Gear is going to resurrect itself. If so I wonder if they will make caving knee pads again. hmmm....
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby arkcaver » Jan 14, 2008 8:06 pm

Dunno, but I know that the quality of the ones being currently sold on ebay as bomber caving pads are not anywhere near the quality of the old ones!
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby pacaver » Jan 14, 2008 8:22 pm

I finally wore out my bomber elbow pads and when I went to order a pair of large, I found that they're out. I picked up a set of smalls instead and will wear 'em under instead of over. If they start making gear that's as good as the old stuff I'll be 1st in line!
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby Jeff Bartlett » Jan 14, 2008 8:28 pm

when i purchased the second-to-last pair of long knee pads from the (new?) owner of Bomber 3 or 4 months ago, he said that he'd placed an order for a new shipment and expected to have them by Spring.

that said, i wore through my pair incredibly quickly and was rather unimpressed. i expect that a new Taiwanese production run will be more of the same, and will not be purchasing.
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby JoeyS » Jan 14, 2008 10:19 pm

Wait, so are you all suggesting the Ebay Bomber Gear guy is selling newly produced (but imported; lower quality) BG pads? I thought he bought the inventory of the BG business and was just selling what was left (?). I bought some of the long knee pads from the guy last year, and they are holding up fine, but I've only used them for a few dozen trips; I'm still waiting to wear out the Bombers I bought back in 2000, but I can't seem to kill them.
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby Jeff Bartlett » Jan 14, 2008 11:20 pm

JoeyS wrote:Wait, so are you all suggesting the Ebay Bomber Gear guy is selling newly produced (but imported; lower quality) BG pads? I thought he bought the inventory of the BG business and was just selling what was left (?). I bought some of the long knee pads from the guy last year, and they are holding up fine, but I've only used them for a few dozen trips; I'm still waiting to wear out the Bombers I bought back in 2000, but I can't seem to kill them.


from what i'm told by fellow cavers - i have no material evidence, so to speak - Bombers used to be made in America. the newer ones, at the very least the most recent production run that is still trickling its way onto eBay, are made in Taiwan if I remember correctly from the tags that used to be on mine. they are a shadow of the old made-in-America version.

the eBay Bomber guy is the one I spoke with who claims to have a new batch on order.
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby NZcaver » Jan 15, 2008 9:22 am

xcathodex wrote:from what i'm told by fellow cavers - i have no material evidence, so to speak - Bombers used to be made in America. the newer ones, at the very least the most recent production run that is still trickling its way onto eBay, are made in Taiwan if I remember correctly from the tags that used to be on mine. they are a shadow of the old made-in-America version.

the eBay Bomber guy is the one I spoke with who claims to have a new batch on order.

I have both types - my old US-made shorties (maybe 7 years old) and my newer long ones (about 3 years old) which I believe were made in Thailand, not Taiwan. (There are no tags on them any more.)

The material quality does differ a little between each pair, but I wouldn't quite call them a "shadow" of the old quality. My long ones have done me well, although they did get pretty badly ripped up on lava a couple of years ago - but the US made ones would have been toast on that stuff too. I repaired my long Bombers by sewing and gluing multiple strips of 2 inch webbing across the knees, and now I use hard-cap construction pads when I'm in lava tubes!

Anyway, when your pads die keep your foam inserts. I bought my long Bombers off eBay, and the foam in them was soft crap. I contacted a guy at Bomber (JUST before they went out of business) and he very kindly sent me the good foam for them. Nice guy! He said the soft foam was a mistake in the first(?) batch they made overseas (which apparently never went on the market, so perhaps mine were sold as seconds?). The manuafacturer probably figured they could save some money using cheaper foam.

By the way, if you want more info try searching the forum. You'll find numerous other threads talking about Bomber pads.
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby SpeleoRover » Jan 15, 2008 9:57 am

We've been using 20 or so of the old US-made shorties at work for years. They've held up great. They need some patching and new straps, though.

Chaz (a member here) had some kneepads Rhino-lined at a truck bedliner service. That would make about any pad puncture proof! :kewl:
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby Evan G » Jan 15, 2008 3:39 pm

SpeleoRover wrote:We've been using 20 or so of the old US-made shorties at work for years. They've held up great. They need some patching and new straps, though.

Chaz (a member here) had some kneepads Rhino-lined at a truck bedliner service. That would make about any pad puncture proof! :kewl:


:kewl: Rhino-Lining, Wow! What an interesting idea!
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby driggs » Jan 15, 2008 11:07 pm

Dangerjudy wrote:Rumors are circulating in the paddling world that Bomber Gear is going to resurrect itself. If so I wonder if they will make caving knee pads again. hmmm....


I spoke with a person (whom I will not name) at OTR who claimed to now own the rights to the name, and that person was working on a new kneepad design to use under the old Bomber name. I was shown a prototype, and it looked very well-made - but the name was the only relation to the "real" Bombers.

Of course, my memories of the weekend are a bit foggy, so take this speleo-gossip with a grain of salt.
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby wyandottecaver » Jan 16, 2008 6:16 pm

Rhino lined kneepads...I will have to look into that!
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby Dangerjudy » Feb 20, 2008 4:48 pm

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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby NZcaver » Feb 20, 2008 6:37 pm

Dangerjudy wrote:http://www.paddlinglife.net/article.php?id=232

Thanks for posting the link. Breaking news indeed!

2003 was a sad year as one of the most innovative paddling outerwear companies in the industry bid adieu to paddlesports.

But now, after fighting through five years of strife, Bomber Gear and owner Rick Fanken are back with a new, recognizable partner and the same bomber gear. “We’ve always had top-end designs,” Franken says. “That’s the reason Bomber Gear was able to rise out of the ashes like a phoenix. We have a strong brand.”

So Bomber Gear is back in business - yay! :banana_yay:
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby Ralph E. Powers » Feb 20, 2008 8:52 pm

NZcaver wrote:
Dangerjudy wrote:http://www.paddlinglife.net/article.php?id=232

Thanks for posting the link. Breaking news indeed!

2003 was a sad year as one of the most innovative paddling outerwear companies in the industry bid adieu to paddlesports.

But now, after fighting through five years of strife, Bomber Gear and owner Rick Fanken are back with a new, recognizable partner and the same bomber gear. “We’ve always had top-end designs,” Franken says. “That’s the reason Bomber Gear was able to rise out of the ashes like a phoenix. We have a strong brand.”

So Bomber Gear is back in business - yay! :banana_yay:

Well that is good news then... but the idea of making them last even longer with Rhino liners...hmmm...
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Re: Bomber Gear

Postby Evan G » Feb 21, 2008 1:43 pm

If look at Bomber Gear ebay sales it says their back for 2008.
http://tinyurl.com/3c94cj

Also at their ebay store they are having a weekend sale:
http://stores.ebay.com/Bomber-Gear.

But Bomber has not updated the website:
http://www.bombergear.com/
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