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  1. #1
    Member Dutch253's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2011
    Bamberg, Germany

    How Important is an SPE?

    I am a complete newbie and have been reading the lists put together for a setup under $100, $200 etc... One thing I noticed was that they pretty much all had a SPE in them. So my question is this: how important is it to use one? From my limited understanding it just keeps your sleeping pad from sliding around? What if you have an under quilt? Still need an SPE?
    Thanks again!

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    diy gathered end
    diy, syl nylon
    1" plypro web & ws
    You do not need an spe if you are not using a pad that needs extended or if you have an adaquate under quilt.

  3. #3
    Senior Member BillyBob58's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Tupelo, MS
    If you do not have a double layer(pad pocket) hammock, and want to use a pad, it is super handy to keep the pad from running away from you. It also allows you to have wider coverage just in the areas where you need it, by stuffing either strips of CCF or extra clothing, to keep your shoulders from getting cold. A huge benefit is the ability to stack either full length or full length with torso length pads for whatever thickness you need. All for a weight of ~ 4 oz and very little bulk.

    But, you probably can't get one, unless you make it yourself. So just get a dbl layer hammock like a Traveler or Claytor or some other. And use a wide enough pad. Or if you get a single layer hammock, just use a plenty wide CCF pad, and use some shelf liner or put lines of seam sealer on the pads to help it grip the hammock and stay in place.

    Or, see if you can convert your sleeping bag into a pod system.

  4. #4
    Senior Member HappyHiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    DIY DL/HH Hyperlite/WBBB 1.1 DL
    WL Old Man Winter
    HHSS/DIY Down UQ
    I never had one when using pads and did fine without it ( in both single layer and double layer hammocks). Sure does look nice though.

    As mentioned above, you want to make sure you have adequate coverage on the shoulders and thighs (personally I found thigh coverage not as essential). 26" pads are nice, 30" are great. If you're using a 20" pad, you can cut a short section of a 2nd CCF pad to lie across the top of your sleeping pad in a "T" configuration to provide the shoulder coverage (and additional insulation for your torso), or duct tape/tie small sections for your shoulders/thighs to the pad.
    Experience is the worst teacher - it presents the exam first and the lesson later. - Unknown

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