Just about every aspect of Triple Aught Design’s Praetorian Hoodie screams quality, durability and function. Made of 100% New Zealand Merino Wool, the Praetorian is simple yet extremely useful. At $175, it’s what one might call “no frills”: no extra pockets, no drawstrings, no secret compartments, nothing but the basics. But the basics are all it needs.
The Praetorian offers only “moderate thermal protection”, according to TAD’s web site. As a base layer it can be worn comfortably against the skin, unlike traditional cotton garments. Reinforced elbows and forearms mean the wearer won’t tear holes in it while laying or moving prone. The thumbholes facilitate smooth addition of extra layers, and the hood is soft and comfortable. I haven’t worn mine in wet weather, but according to TAD the Merino Wool will insulate against rain. That’s a lot of good features in a fairly lightweight package.
The Praetorian has been available for a while, and many others have written reviews after putting one through much more stress than I did (South Texas winters aren’t exactly life at the North Pole). Everyone pretty much knows the good stuff about the Praetorian, so I’ll list the semi-bad stuff. But before I do, I’d like to be perfectly clear: none of the “problems” I’m about to list would stop me from buying or using this hoodie. It is worth the expense.
Merrill wrote about the Praetorian extensively here, if you want to know why it’s worth the cost.
The thumb holes are a little narrow. I have little girly hands, but still found the holes tight enough to get on my nerves.
While the manufacturing quality appeared to be high, I found a couple of minor defects. The seam inside the bottom front of the hoodie was irregular on the right side, near the bottom of the zipper. On the left side the stitching was perfectly straight, but I found a gap in the seam big enough to stick my pinkie in. No big deal on its own, but I expect the gap to eventually widen as the stitching around it gives out.
The Praetorian doesn’t work as a windbreaker. In fairness it’s not supposed to, I just hoped it would. I’d like to wear it as an external jacket, but in biting wind it’s just not enough protection.
Speaking of wearing it as an external jacket, if you intend to do that order one size larger than normal. I’m 5’7” and 160 pounds, and the medium fit me tight. That’s NOT a bad thing, and it makes nothing but sense if you’re using it as a base layer. However if your primary intent is to wear it around town, get a larger one. Especially if you carry a concealed pistol on your waist.
And that’s it. I can’t find anything else to complain about. I’ve ragged on plenty of cold-weather items the military issued me, but can’t find much to bitch about with the Praetorian. It’s just a good piece of gear, at a fair price.
Get a closer look at the Praetorian on Triple Aught Design’s website here.
Our other review on the Praetorian can be found here: http://www.breachbangclear.com/praetorian-hoodie-review-merrill/
Mad Duo Chris
Read about the author and his lovable curmudgeonliness here.