Forgot to add the Jacks have a quilt with an add-on section.
The MW3 Convertible.
Forgot to add the Jacks have a quilt with an add-on section.
The MW3 Convertible.
Ambulo tua ambulo.
I've read lots of posts like, "it shifted off to one side at 3AM," or, "I use a pad for my feet," or "I had to fiddle with it to..."
Many people have to adjust the covers while sleeping in a hotel as well.
Doesn't it make sense that if you drop a couple-three hunski on a hammock, it shouldn't be a search for something so primary to the use of the product as keeping warm in temps below 70F?
The hammocks without integrated insulation tend to range from 20-200 bucks.
Think how well the topside is covered with well integrated insect sceens and tarps.
The tarps normally are not integrated and that still does not provide any insulation, nor does a tent.
The current crop of UQ's may be of excellent quality, but they are tacked on and not what I would call modular design. Imagine getting a nice digital SLR and ordering up a lens that might fit, and it might work in the conditions you have in mind, and it is held on with bungee cords. Please.
Imagine having a Canon DSLR and not being able to use a Nikor lense. In essence, a proprietary attachment system would accomplish just that.
And the idea that you can use a standard 20" hiking pad is laughable. They are uncomfortable and don't give effective coverage.
Pads go up to 40" wide.
A single option for attaching would also result in only one width of UQ fitting. At present, UQ's range anywhere from 38"- 48" in width affording the users choice in how much coverage they want in relation to how much weight and bulk they are willing to carry.
As far as the rest (compressible, water resistant, breathable, lightweight, ventable), the current ones already do that. Adding zippers or velcro to both the hammock and the UQ would result in less compressibility and more weight without really offering anything more than can be managed with a shock-cord. The current shock-cord solutions are also stackable ( more than one can be used at a time).
If you want everything integrated and requiring less thoughtful adjusting,
you might want to look at the Bear Mountain Bridge hammock or a Clarke.
The BMB has a 26" sleeve to insert pad(s) and their line of flat quilts will fit without much adjustment. They have quilts for all seasons, and they are stackable.
The Clarke's have pockets for insulation that can be filled (or not) to achieve more insulation. Albeit with a significant weight penalty.
i'm working on something (with a mad scientist) for my set-up, currently, that may be "the bomb" or "a bomb". i'll be posting later this fall. (it's too hot right now to think about trying to defeat the cold)
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Definitely on the path to what I had in mind.
I don't see how adding Velcro at the "belt line" would add much weight. Granted, it isn't zero, but you only need to hang the insulation.
But that is still just tacking stuff on the outside. You see, the problem is that we think we're going to use the bare hammock, but we never will unless it is hot. I rarely camp or hike where the nighttime temps are over 70F. And that is the rub-- I will ALWAYS be using some sort of insulation on the bottom, so it should be an integral part of the hammock rather than an add-on.
Just build a double layer hammock that carries the weight and stress on the outer layer with a loose outer layer and make a selection of inserts. We're talking the same kind of technology as a differential cut on an under quilt. That outer layer is wind and water resistance, and enough strength to hold up the insulating material inside. You can still locate the insulation where you want and full options for partial or full length and a long (3' or so) light zipper on one side for access. Add some Velcro tabs inside to hold the insulation in place and up the sides. Make the outer layer really loose, with cross-wise channels sewn in for drawstrings and they could be adjusted to suit the loft of the inserts. Light shock cord and toggles would do it. Then it can all move and be adjusted to suit the user, but stowing is simply rolling it up or stuffing into a Black Bishop bag.
Adding the bottom layer, zipper and Velcro would add about 10-12 ounces--- think about the weight of a light hammock like a Nano 7, plus the hardware. You could use the very light uncoated ripstop nylon with a good DWR coating. No rocket science needed!
Synthetic inserts could be made without extra outer coverings, or super light stuff like mesh-- just enough to hold it together. The rest is provided by the hammock layers. Down inserts could be made with the lightest downproof materials and adding a vapor barrier above would be nor more complex than adding a space blanket over the down insert.
I guarantee that once a design like that is put in production, there would be a wealth of third party cottage manufacturers offering all kinds of inserts and DIY would be easy. It could be upgraded as insulation technology changes.
The hammock design itself could be any of the methods on the market now-- simple gathered-end, asym or extended foot box. Retro-fitting sewn on under covers could be a new cottage industry. Hear me 2qzq?
The topside would be conventional integrated bug screens, weather covers and tarps-- no revolution there at all. I would want a permanent zippered bug screen that can be tossed to one side and a structural ridge line.
JRB BMBH with a 3 or 4 season MWUQ, and the 3 season comes in a convertible to short or long version. The fit is so close to custom it might as well be Velcroed, zipped or snapped on, although it does not need any of those. Just clip it on as directed. It will hang a bit below the hammock. When you lay in the hammock it will then sag right down into the quilt quilt for just right tension and mucho warmth, every time. Once it is on, it can be left on until it is too hot.
Or there used to be the Speer Hammock's, who made a PeaPod which would wrap perfectly around his hammock( as well as quite a few other brands), once tied on as directed, again giving much warmth virtually without fail. Once it is on, it can be left on until it is too hot. These are available now from TTTgear, as Ed Speer has decided to earn a living in some other fashion than making hammock products. But boy did he leave a legacy of brilliantly designed, high quality gear. As he would say about this subject" "Not to worry"! He also made a very famous custom UQ- the Snugfit- which if memory serves Velcroed to his hammock. But no one is making that now far as I know.
If you are a HH fan, there is the custom fit HHSS. Some don't like it, some others think it is just peachy. It can only go on(correctly) one way, as directed, and once it is on it fits perfectly and there is really nothing else to do. It either works for you or it doesn't. Then, as above, you leave it on.
There might be others I can't remember at the moment, or just don't know about. But with any of the above, there is nothing to fiddle with once they are first put on, and there is no way to have " trouble-- sliding around, air gaps, not quite enough, or too much.....".
Still, others will choose a 1/2-3/4 UQ, primarily for the purpose of saving weight and volume. And many of thos folks will be toasty warm, and when it is cold enough they will have a pad under their feet and also have toasty feet. I have one of these- as well as a few of the above listed- myself. A WB synthetic "Yeti". And it is one of my favorites overall. I can leave one layer of Climashield in it and be warm below well 50 for 9 or 10 oz, even without down. My son has used in- on his 1st ever hammock experience, with 3 layers, toasty in the 20s. With a short WM blue pad under his legs. It worked perfectly.
I really like the thing, but it does have more fiddle factor than any of the above systems. It can move up or down ( or I can move off of it) or slip off of my shoulder. I guess the foot pad could slip out of place. Or if it is not snug enough- with "enough" tension, it won't be as warm as it could be. The shock cord sometimes wants to contact my face. Still, I have found ways to solve all of these problems, just took a little playing with in the back yard. Or a minor mod or two depending on which hammock I am using it on. So I'm glad WB once made this thing( still available but they are all down now). Because I do think this system- with the possible exception of my PeaPod/Claytor combo- is about the most volume and weight efficient way to stay warm. Despite it's little hassles, it is a winner!
Why do I say "with the possible exception of my PeaPod/Claytor combo", when the PeaPod weighs 38-42 oz for the 20F(bottom) rated model? Compared to a 13 oz down torso UQ(plus leg pad), or a 22 oz full length UQ/TQ? Because, as people often forget, the PeaPod packs in a lot of TQ function as well as UQ. And it is so bombproof and hard to be cold in due to it's draft resistant design. If you are closed up in it- or have it partially open around the head but with something else inside(light quilt, or puffy clothing) to prevent all the warm air rushing past your shoulders and out a big vent hole- there will be no drafts. No matter how you move. ( unless you and your hammock are to big for it) And it has a ton of head insulation all ready built in. So considering all of that, and considering two LONG quilts( a TQ and an UQ) of 2.5" loft are going to weigh over 40 oz plus some more for a hood, I think the pod is actually quite weight efficient. And you will not roll of of the warm spot, nor will it move from covering you.
People's needs will vary, and the manufacturer probably wants to account for that. It has been a month or 2 since I could even consider trying to lay in a hammock with anything under me, or probably over me. I am more likely to wet things down trying to get some evaporative cooling going on!But that is still just tacking stuff on the outside. You see, the problem is that we think we're going to use the bare hammock, but we never will unless it is hot. I rarely camp or hike where the nighttime temps are over 70F. And that is the rub-- I will ALWAYS be using some sort of insulation on the bottom, so it should be an integral part of the hammock rather than an add-on.
Just build a double layer hammock that carries the weight and stress on the outer layer with a loose outer layer and make a selection of inserts.
Agreed, even everything I mentioned above is just tacking something on the outside of the hammock. But in most of the cases I mentioned, it all works so well and consistently that I do not have a problem with it. Now admittedly, if I take one brand of hammock and tack on a different brand of insulation, things probably will become more complex and require more fiddle. But I'm not at all sure how any one can make any one quilt that will work with all these different brands and different size of hammocks perfectly, when the hammocks vary so much one from the other. Now you can have one type of insulation designed to be securely attached to one brand/type hammock, I suppose.
If you ever get a chance, try a 26" wide CCF pad in the pad pocket of a JRB BMBH. I find that to be a big improvement over any other hammock/pad combo I have tried. I might still chose UQs for ultimate comfort, but it is for me q quite usable system. It makes a big difference when the pad does not have to cross a center ridge, and is instead just laying on a flat surface of about the same size and shape.
Last edited by BillyBob58; 07-30-2011 at 18:17.
Apparently, signature that I used from 2006 no longer tolerated so now deleted.
I am VERY pleased it works for you. But "works" and well designed can be very different things. Many manufacturers have done wonderful things with the main hammock bodies and the top quilts and tarps meld well. The integrated bug screens aren't bad, although some of the add-on ones are a little half-baked, but the insulation thing is just sad--- very, very sad. I think it can be done better.
I guess I'll have to learn to sew and show you guys how to get things done
I've actually be concidering something like this while trying to decide between hammocks as an addition to a Clark Tropical. With the smaller hammock bed I think it would work without adding much wasted weight, it would also be more like a 2/3 length. My concept would be having an outer floppy DWR layer (similar to the pockets to act as a wind and weather shield) attached with velcro and corner ties or shockcord/toggles along the hammock edge. Then to add insulating layers (probably climashield...) they would just have loops or rings on the corners that would use the corner connections for support and fill the DWR layer. There would obviously be more technical stuff like each layer being wider than the first but I doubt anyone wants nor needs me to ramble on about those.
That being said, I'd love to hear how direct attachment works for you. Sadly I agree with others that the cottage industies probably have it right with the shock cord since everyone quite literaly has their own lay, I'd imagine it would hard to design an attached full length underquilt that would work properly for the majority and not have a lot of wasted insulation or be a hassle to attach. It makes me sad because I too would rather not have to add a bunch a DIY projects but it goes along with hammocking I guess.
Oh, I suppose I should also mention that while weight is a factor for me (I am going to be hauling it around after all) I would rather have what works for me and keeps me super comfy than that saves a couple of oz...just to give you an idea of my thought process/hang style
Also, some of you mentioned that the direct attachment concept had been mentioned in other posts. If you know where they are please post some links!