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KÜHL Liberator Convertible Pant - Men's


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    30 Reviews


    The Kühl Men's Liberator Convertible Pants are versatile enough to handle an intense day of climbing, a trek across the Pyrenees, or a weekend canoeing trip. Stealth zippers are set into a spandex band for added flexibility and to keep the zippers' profile as low as possible, and DryPoint fabric offers total comfort and easy wear. Even if you get wet fording a stream or during a slippery portage, these pants dry quickly so you don't stay soggy.

    • DryPoint fabric puts soft, hydrophilic cotton inside and durable, hydrophobic nylon outside to help draw moisture away from your skin so it can evaporate quickly
    • UPF 40 shields your legs from the sun
    • Kühl's Athletik fit is streamlined and clean without a bunch of extra fabric to get in your way or flap in the wind
    • Gusseted crotch won't restrict your movement when you need to scramble or climb
    • Articulated knees are designed to be most comfortable when you're actually on the move
    • Stealth zip-off system lets you convert these pants into shorts while giving the zippers a low-profile, barely visible look
    • Side zips help the pant legs slide easily on or off over your hiking boots
    • Five-pocket design with two zippered thigh pockets and a tool pocket gives you room to carry a few essentials
    • Item #KUH0323

    Tech Specs

    DryPoint (77% nylon, 23% cotton)
    Athletik (relaxed), articulated knees
    [shorts] 10 in
    belt loops
    2 front, 1 front coin, 2 back, 1 side tool, 2 zippered thigh
    Gusseted Crotch
    UPF Rating

    Tech Specs

    • Reviews
    • Q & A

    What do you think about this product?

    Have questions about this product?

    Size is small, but pants are nice

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
    • Fit: Runs small
    • Size Bought: 33/34 and 34/34

    I really wanted these pants. I tried this exact model on in a retail store who only had even sizes (32,34,36). I wear a 33, and in the store, the 32 was too tight as I suspected. So, I ordered 2 pairs from Backcountry, one in 33/34 and one in 34/34 to be safe. The 33's are close to an inch too small. I dont have a pair of 32's to compare them to, but the pair in the store could not have been much tighter than these. I will keep the 34, even though they are a tad too large. If I tuck 2 shirts into my waist, then I can skip a belt, but since I intend to wear these in the summer, I will probably have to wear a belt. The make and quality seem great on these, I just wish the fit was more consistent. I get that different manufacturers can have different cuts, and even the same manufacturer might not be consistent between different styles, but these are 2 pairs of the exact same make/model, only different in color, and the 33 is an inch too small, and the 34 is 1/2 inch too big... I know the 33 runs small. Maybe the 34 is running small too, just not small enough to be a real 33.

    Great pants

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times

    I bought these for my brother who said "The pants were amazing for my first trekking trip. They were lightweight and comfortable. The stretch allowed my legs to move on inclines and declines. I really enjoyed how quickly these dried."

    Better fit than most convertibles.

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 32

    I've had a few pairs of convertibles and my wife commented how weird they fit. The Kühl Liberators have designed these to fit better, to not flare out so much, to hide the zippers well, and to work well in a variety of situations. I'm admittedly thin, so they fit well on me. More muscular folks may have more difficulty with them and should try them on in a store, then sit, stand, crouch, etc to see how they work for your body style.

    These went on a couple of trips where I needed the ability of the conversion. Desert in the fall gets hot and cool quickly. The zippers for the legs worked quickly and fine, and the pants accommodated some extra things in the pockets as I stashed and retrieved them. I have the sand color, which is light, but washes out quickly with a dab of extra shampoo on them in the restroom sink, and then dries somewhat quickly.

    Great Pants, Waist Runs Small

    • Familiarity: I returned this product before using it
    • Fit: Runs small
    • Size Bought: 32"x30"

    All pants and shorts I buy are 32" waist. These were very tight. I am retuning them and trying the 33" waist.

    Hands down and Zipped Up

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 34x34

    The only goto pants for fishing, hiking and chilling around the fire. Or even strolling town! I have ordered various sizes as I tend to fluctuate around the mid section! lol
    Usually a 35 - 34 and 36 is only avail.

    Utilitarian legacy pants

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 38x32 (med)

    This is my 4th pair over the last year. Exception quality with detail in every facet. Lots of usable pockets sized just right for utilitarian functions. The ones one each side for glasses and/or cell phone with no slippage are exactly what I look for. Most of all you get a 2 pairs for price of offsetting the price. Long pants with fast conversion to shorts. Zippers are very reliable but need tucking in from time to time. Easy on and off without removal of boots! Cleaning is as easy as wiping down with water. Quick to dry. Knee gussets great for obstacles and bending. All season hiking pants for sure. And I wear these as every day too. I prefer the slight bagginess as it accounts for flexibility and slight weight fluctuation or tucking in shirts. Get compliments all the time with style and color. The cons would be doesn't dry well in the cold but what does. Sizing can very by color, so be careful. Washes well and holds color and size. So make sure they fit right from the get go. Kuhl puts the kool in these pants.

    Great, but wow, inconsistent size.

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
    • Fit: Runs large
    • Size Bought: 30x32

    I bought a pair of these in black in May of 2015. I absolutely love them and wrote a review explaining such. I decided to order another pair in a different color, of the same size obviously. When they arrived I tried them on really quickly and unfortunately I only paid attention to the waist. Same fit as my previous pair. I threw away the tags. BIG MISTAKE. I finally have a chance to use them now and realize that they are MUCH much longer than my previous pair. Double checked the size - yes, they say the same size but are probably two inches longer. Perhaps they were labeled wrong? Anyway, since I threw away the tags, I can no longer return them. Yes, I understand, my fault for not being more careful when I tried them on, so be warned to not take it for granted that they're going to be the same size.

    Decent Design, poorly executed

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
    • Fit: Runs large
    • Size Bought: 36" 30"

    I just got these and to say the least, they are rather disappointing for the price. They are far more baggy than I would like to see and have several inches of extra fabric from knees down. The pockets I can feel from the tension in the fabric, are the cause of the tightness in the waste that Dan as pointed out. They are rather uncomfortable and painful to pur your hands into as weel. I also see no difference where the extra elastic material is on the butt. I wear a size 34 32 in relaxed fit, and these are "relaxed" fitted but I had to get a 36 30. I dont care too much what my pants look like hiking but these are so baggy, it annoys me. Much of what Dan says is also accurate. They are incredibly uncomfortable to sit down in as well, and makes you feel like you are wearing a jock strap.

    Great pants

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
    • Fit: True to size

    Just the right fit and weight looks great
    from a die hard blue jean wearer always had a hard time with the naked feel of pants in this category but i like these pants
    I go to china and Asia often and having the weight savings with these pants over my jeans is great

    long in the legs

    • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
    • Fit: Runs large

    Usual high quality from Kuhl, but legs are too long, almost defectively so. I ordered 38"x30" and the legs were more like 32" at least. Sent them back.

    Great Pants-Durability Lacking

    • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
    • Fit: Runs large
    • Size Bought: 36x30

    First of all, these pants do run large, I usually wear a 36x32 but had to get a 36x30 in these. These pants fit great (with the correct size) and really seam to move with you. I also really like where the shorts fall, not too short and not too long. My only complaint is durability, there seems to be some wearing out around the calfs after only a year and a half (although I wear them for everything: hiking, fishing, casually).

    Awesome pants! Super comfortable

    • Familiarity: I've used it several times
    • Fit: True to size
    • Size Bought: 38 x 30

    My husband absolutely loves these pants. They are his favorites because they have a nice texture and are so lightweight and comfortable. They are also quite versatile and he wears them around doing various everyday activities as well as for hiking. They also have a great fit and look good--he decided he needed a second pair so he could wear them all the time.

    Nice and lite

      These pants are cool, I wear them Hiking and just around town.
      I'm not a shorts guy so I do not get use of the quick zip off Feature.
      But I needed some pants that were lite and durable. Something other than Jeans. or 90's cargo pants. This was my first pare of KuHl pants and I like them so much I have been looking for more in my size 34/34. Not may pants like these come in longer than a 32. So if your a tall guy and having trouble finding cool pants, Try a pair of Kuhl Liberator pants.

      Excellent form and funtion.

      • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
      • Fit: True to size

      These are the only 3 season outdoor pants (shorts) that you will ever need. Leg room for boots and converting into shorts. Extra button INSIDE the fly helps maintain fit while a backpack pushes your pants. (At least that's what's working for me.) Good fit. Comfortable material. Will probably last a long time. (I'll check back in 7 years.)

      If you dont understand or appreciate the finer aspects of Kuhl Liberators, then you probably dont need these pants.

      Comfortable durable good looking

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: 34

      The fabric has strength to it, but it also nice to the touch. It feels tougher than jeans, but as comfortable as jeans. Plus if it gets hot, you can always go shorts. Nice.

      Who said convertibles can't look good?

      • Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
      • Fit: Runs small
      • Size Bought: 34

      I decided for the first time since junior high to get some convertibles. These have been nothing but awesome and I find myself wearing them as regular shorts more than most of my others!

      The fabric is certainly no carhartt material in terms of durability but I have had zero issues with and seams or tearing and I am not nice to my shorts when I play in the backcountry.

      They even actually look good with the legs zipped on and the zipper conceals itself better than any other convertibles on the market.

      They do not have any strech which I do wish they had just a little, but that is why I have my prana strech zion convertibles!

      If you are a boarderline waist size, size up as these run a bit small. I rarely NEED a 34 (I have a 33 waist but can usually wear 32 pants) and in these I had to exchange from the 32 up to the 34 and I do not even need a belt with them.

      I would definitely recommend these to any savvy adventurer in the market for some convertibles.

      Love these!

      • Familiarity: I've used it several times
      • Fit: True to size
      • Size Bought: 30

      I've been wearing these every day hiking in Summit County and absolutely love them. I usually buy jeans in 29 waist and the 30s almost need a belt but they're just fine without one. Their cut is full enough to be comfortable climbing and hiking but slender enough to still look good for the brewery afterward. :) The pockets are great! My iPhone 6 fits nicely in the left thigh pocket (the one without the zipper) and with the way the opening is stitched, it's snug enough that I'm not concerned about it slipping out. Sunglasses fit in the pocket on the right. The zippered pockets on the front of your thighs are great for added security. Back pockets are deep. The regular front pockets are a bit snug to get into and a bit more shallow than pockets on jeans but still useful. They're deep enough that my whole hand (fingers straight) can almost fit inside. The material dries quite quickly and can be wiped clean with a damp cloth. They convert to shorts very easily with the snap/zippered ankles without removing my Keen sandles. I'm pretty sure I could do the same without removing hiking boots but haven't tried yet. Definitely buying another pair in another color.

      Weird Fit, tight pockets, no stretch

      • Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
      • Fit: Runs large
      • Size Bought: 32x30

      I really wanted to like these pants. They have some neat features and good ideas, but the fit and overall implementation means that wearing them would be a constant annoyance.

      First, the good: Lots of well-placed pockets. Good material, I love the idea of synthetic inside and cotton outside. And the zip-off legs are the best I've seen yet on any convertible pants- they don't have the dorky looking flaps that make it obvious that they're zip-off, and it's easy to open them partway for ventilation.

      The Bad: The legs and waist are both too baggy. And yet the front pockets are so tight, I can barely get my hand in them- something as simple as reaching in your pocket for your phone is tedious, and even worse if you have to reach for something at the bottom of the pocket, like keys or coins. Because of the tight pockets and baggy fit, simply having a tailor put darts in the waist would not be enough. Actually all the pockets are so tight that they're usefulness is greatly limited- for example the one on the right would be perfect for my phone, if there was any additional fabric to give the pockets volume, but there isn't. Simply adding slight gussets to all the pockets, would vastly improve the utility of these pants. Speaking of pockets, the metal tab riveted to the coin pocket is just annoying - the metal is loose enough on the thin fabric that I wanted to tear it off, and i worried about it catching on things in either the main pocket or the coin pocket itself. It also causes premature wear- I have a pair of Kuhl Revolvr pants with the same metal tab, and a hole is starting to form at the corner of the tab.

      Despite the baggy fit, these pants seem no more flexible than any other pair of pants. The stretch panels do nothing- they're just extremely narrow strips of slightly stretchy material, so there's no way it could have a noticeable effect on stretchiness. The 'articulation' is very slight also- it seems like those stitch marks are just for style and marketing, they would have to be more aggressive to be useful.

      I saved the dumbest part for last- the button fly behind the zipper. There's an enlarged flap of fabric behind the zipper, that you can button closed before zipping the pants up, and closing the main button (kinda like some fancy dress pants). What possible function this serves is beyond me, but what it does is make it a damn annoying to take a leak. Even if you never button the flap (as I do with my other Kuhl pants), it gets in the way when you unzip. I often unzip and undo the button when I go to the bathroom. It's possible to get around the fabric and pee through just the zipper, but it's difficult and uncomfortable. I like my other Kuhl pants (Revolvr) in spite of these annoyances, but I don't think I'll buy any more of their pants until they change this stupid design.

      Update: I posted a review on Kuhl's site, and received the following response, which you may find interesting:

      Obviously, KUHL could not disagree more with your critique, Dan aka the Answerman. It would be tedious to go through each of your points in this platform, so suffice it to say that every element in this award winning design is there for a reason. The French Fly, to briefly answer one of your points, is there to pull the lap of the pant taut so pockets don't flare out. (Look at a photo of an average pair of "khaki' pants. Of course, the Liberator Convertible may not be the right style for you, and we do appreciate your feedback, even if we disagree with your ideas about the french fly (obvious solution is to simply not use the button, it won't get in your way), the articulation KUHL is famous for introducing, and the added panels having a function that increases freedom of movement.

      Thank you,

      Kühl Customer Service

      Very true. I really liked these pants until I tried them on at a local store and man was I disappointed with the way they fit. If you are going to just walk in them then they may work well for you but they are so snug in the thigh area that these pants are useless for hiking or any techinal activities. There is absolutely ZERO range of motion in these pants. I wear a 34 and couldn't even get a finger into the front pocket.

      middle bowl of porridge,..just right

        These are a very nice convertible pant,..nice light stretch,breathable
        really like the quality zipper on the hems,also includes a snap flap.
        They are a bit baggy and wide on the legs,so have them at a tailor for now.No stretch in the waist at all,which is a shame..still pretty versatile,breathable pant..I don't umm rock/slam/edge in them. not that narcistic,...just wear them