Originally Posted by Jer
I too never understood the whole "zip-in" thing.
Not much to understand - it allows you the option of an additional layer of insulation (or not) without the hassle of a separate garment; i.e., another zipper to open/close. That's all there is too it - it just makes life a bit simpler (vs. a shell with another zipped layer) when you put the jacket on, take it off, or zip it part way down when you get hot. And then the liner can be removed on warmer days (or part way through a day) rather than swapping jackets.
This probably all sounds rather "ho-hum", but for me I don't like owning multiple ski jackets since I have my ski pass clipped into one pocket, my cellphone tethered to the inside of another pocket, a watch attached to a zipper as a pull tab, sunscreen/powdercords/etc. hidden away in another pocket. It's a system that works for me (years of counseling hasn't changed my mind
) and it would be a big hassle to move all this stuff from one jacket to another everytime I wanted to swap between a shell and an insulated jacket, but of course this convenience can be had with a shell and multiple layers, which brings me back to the advantages I noted in the first paragraph.
Clearly this whole "zip-in" thing appeals to my OCD-driven sense of organization and convenience (since my wife and ski buddies also look at my get-up like I'm crazy too). All I have to say to all of you is...