Today we're going to take a look at an interesting pair of britches from Slovenia. Grunts: Slovenia. Uni&Forma's "UF Pro" describes themselves as a company that creates "top-end tactical garments for demanding professionals..." Though there's nothing wrong with the US-based companies we have reviewed (Triple Aught Design/TAD Gear, Vertx, 5.11 Tactical, Arcteryx, etc.) we were chuffed to be given the opportunity to review UF Pro. Oh, and the pictures aren't all to show off Nate's sweet ass (though he does have a sweet ass). They're to illustrate the range of motion these pants provide. Mad Duo
UF PRO's P-40 Pants
Over the last few months I’ve been testing the durability and comfort of the UF PRO P-40 series pants in Pencott Badlands camouflage. These are the P-40s listed on their website as UF PRO P-40 Camouflage Pants. I am a big fan of all Pencott patterns, I originally saw these pants when they were featured in a print add about a year ago, with a picture of a dude midair doing a ninja kick. It wasn’t the hokey photo that captured my interest, but the apparent use of stretch fabric on the backside and legs of the trousers.
Now, generally I don’t like this sort of fabric, which a lot of sports T-shirts are made out of. The reason for this is that I that generally will sweat more when wearing one then just a normal cotton shirt (note - these shirts are however the best for long hikes with a heavy rucksack, because they keep pack strap chafing to a minimum) The synthetic stretch fabric is a natural choice for uniform type pants however, especially for soldiers. Many people that have served in the military will know what I mean when I say it’s rare for a set of trousers to last 3 months without blowing the crotch out (hell some fo them don't last 3 weeks). Hop over a log on the obstacle course, jump over a wall, climb a ladder, rappel a cliff, or simply get down in the prone position and low crawl - these are all great ways to tear the inside crotch seam. I'm betting more than one of you reading this walked more have walked a patrol with your junk exposed. The description of the P-40s use of a stretchy fabric (it's called Schoeller®-dynamic) seemed to promise a fix to the Great Crotch Problem.
P-40 pants heavily utilize zippers, more so then most American designs. The crotch, back pockets and cargo pockets (these pants have a lot of pockets) are all closed via high grade color matched zippers. On the outside of the cargo pockets there is a smaller vertical access zipper which is great if you are holding something in one hand, but need gear out of the opposite side pocket. The front of the knees also feature an external zipper, which is tucked under the fabric - at first I didn’t even realize was there. These zippers allow access to knee pad pockets, for those who prefer this system over separate strap style external pads that tend to slip down to your ankles. The pants also feature wide, bar tacked belt loops and built in elastic blousing bands at the bottom. The “old-man pants” style elastic section of the stretchable waist line is a thoughtful add on, as is the double zipper pull fly. If you are used to wearing baggier pants to achieve mobility, these may take a little getting used to, but they aren't uncomfortable, just different.
Sizing concerns - I usually wear 32/32 jeans or Medium Regular uniform trousers. Ordering my usual size, I was worried that something might be lost in translation. I’ve had this happen before, and trying to decipher the different Euro sizing system can be a little confusing. Luckily when ordering, you simply give them your regular Jean size. The manufactures’ tag states 32/32, and the fit was spot on. Also note that the lower leg of the trousers can be adjusted and tightened down. It's something else you might miss if not paying attention, but it is there.
Wearing the trousers to a Victory First handgun course and on several subsequent hiking trips I really started to appreciate the design.The small strip of four way stretch material directly under the back belt line, combined with same fabric on the seat and inside of the thighs provide great flexibility. At the Victory first course, there was quite a bit of movement in the drills, and even firing from the prone. Drawing my pistol, and going from standing to prone quickly was comfortable as I felt the crotch and thigh part of the fabric flex against my skin. Everything is sewn with old world grade craftsmanship and attention to detail. While at first apprehensive about the zippers, they are holding up great and are quick to secure your small items. I recently wrapped up my evaluation of these trousers while hunting in the Appalachian Mountains, and the flexibility was definitely noticed while climbing up and over rock faces - this isn't really a camouflage pattern review, but so you know the Badlands pattern paired great with the dead brown fall landscape.
There are additional zippers for a detachable liner UF PRO calls the "Windstopper lining." I did not use that feature so I can't give you any insight about how it holds up or might impact the fit of the pants, nor can I give you any insight about the knee pads that are another option. However, as well built as the P-40s are, I'm inclined to confidence toward the accessories. You can probably use one of the kneepads available from US companies if need be, or just build a field expedient pair the way many of used to.
P-40s are available in several styles, including a "tactical version" made to be worn with a drop-leg, some "classic pants" in more day-to-day colors and other camouflage patterns (including Greenzone).
Overall I’m impressed with the quality and unique design of these pants. They share several features with more expensive combat pants, but with their own style - I don't believe they are available in the US yet, so you will be paying 129 Euro (roughly $175 US) and shipping from Slovenia. That will obviously stop many of you from looking further, and understandably so - that said, if you are looking for rugged uniform type trousers with great mobility (that are really unlike anything else here in the US right now) and if your use will justify hte expense, UF Pro is definitely worth looking into.
Afterward from the Duo: the pants in this article, like the jackets you will see in future installments, were provided by UF Pro to our minions for review. Also be advised, though they've been around since 1997, UF Pro is still a relatively small company. The phe parent company builds uniforms for the Slovenian military, corrections, etc., but the relatively new "UF Pro" brand is intended for the consumer/tactical/outdoor market. Learn more about UF Pro on Facebook or on their website; you can also find them on Instagram (@ufprogear). We'd also recommend reading what they have to say about 'anatomic cut' garments.
Mad Duo, Breach-Bang & CLEAR!