I’ve spent about two years in these work pants and believe they offer the most utility for anybody needing to carry a lot of equipment while staying comfortable on the job. They are the perfect pants for anybody in construction. My current pants are six months into their life and are going strong. I’ll need to get new ones for aesthetic reasons long before they even start to wear out.
There are pockets on the knees to insert kneepads into that don’t scratch, cut off bloodflow or bind leg motion in any way. I really don’t even think about having kneepads as they’re just always there. The pads are sold separately for about $10.00.
The most useful pockets (for construction) are the nail bag pockets. They’re located right over your normal hip pockets, and can be tucked in when not in use so they look just like normal pants. You can put nails, screws, tape measure, chalk line, etc. in these pockets and not get poked or feel bulky in any way. The other pockets I use the most are the three pencil pockets (mine are located on the left leg which is perfect for me because I’m left handed). I keep at least two carpenters pencils at all times (I hate looking for a pencil, or not having a backup when I’m on a ladder and drop the one in my hand). A nail punch goes in one pencil pocket, and in front of the pencil pockets is a buttoned pocket about two inches wide and four inches deep where I keep my Leatherman multi-tool unfolded (in plier mode) and securely buttoned in. Above these pockets is a wide button closed pocket that is about five or six inches deep. I keep a bandana in there, and it’ll hold much more if I need it to. The right leg has three long slender pockets that will hold a torpedo level, a pocket T-square, and other similar sized and shaped tools. I keep a speed square in my right back pocket, and a hammer holster and utility knife pouch are attached to my belt.
You may put things in different places, but these will hold pretty much everything a large, bulky, heavy toolbag will hold. These pants keep the weight spread out too, so the perception of the weight is reduced. You can even buy accessories designed to work specifically with the pants if you need extra pockets for anything.
Oh, and you probably want to know how much all this costs. These retail for a whopping $60!!! Probably less than you pay for your Carhartts.
[Note: The Skillers pants are very similar to the previously reviewed (but more expensive and difficult to find) Blaklader Work Pants and so we felt it appropriate to recommend this cheaper U.S. made alternative in addition. -- OH]