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sandykayak
01-27-2011, 17:35
At the risk of being branded a heretic......:rolleyes:


I went to the FL hang wanting to try out the Blackbird and was hoping I wasn't going to fall in lust.

Guess what? All the reasons why I chose the Switchback over the BB turned out to be valid. I like being able to tie the net completely out of the way, like being able to have my head in either direction (and even switch around while inside), love the spreader bars that push out the net and make it seem cavernous inside.

Only thing I don't like is that it is way too long (and, therefore has unneeded weight and volume) for a 5-footer. I'm looking at the light hiker (from same maker as Switchback) but although it says 6 oz lighter, they don't give the dimensions of the packed size. Being short, I have a smaller pack (Miniposa) and wanted something less bulky. (No problem for kayak camping).

When I tried out the BB, I did not like the mandatory position, which also created a wall on my right side. Another thing is that the BB fabric felt more papery and less soft than the taffeta? on my SB.

But here's the kicker....I gave demonstrations to several hangers and 3 of them (at least 2 had BBs) said they wanted to get an SB. I did a good job of show-and-tell, pointing out all the features. So, Dale, if you got an uptake in "hits" and inquiries this week, you'll know why.

I would like more info on the Light Hiker. Anyone have one?

MacEntyre
01-27-2011, 17:46
Here are videos, Part 1 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N9OazpnbSo0) and Part 2 (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WIWfM9y4nmc), I made of the Light Hiker.

The video needs a correction about the difference between the original Switchback and the LightHiker... the LH is just shorter, not narrower.

N9OazpnbSo0

WIWfM9y4nmc

I love mine! When I get in, I fall right into the best diagonal position.

- MacEntyre

mbiraman
01-27-2011, 17:49
A bit of heresy once and a while is probably good. Finding what works for you is always a good thing.

sandykayak
01-27-2011, 18:12
Thanks for the videos (how about putting the links on your website?).

If one wanted the extra interior space, is there a way to slip in a pair of those delightful spreader bars?

Has anyone created some sort of extension for those zipper pulls? I'm thinking of something rigid like a soft wire.

islander
01-27-2011, 19:25
Florida Group Hanger, lusting for a Switchback... guilty:eek::sleep::blush:
Really comfortable, super flexible hammock. Looking closely at the lighter weight "SB Light Hiker" now.

JaxHiker
02-02-2011, 14:15
the LH is just shorter, not narrower.

Thanks for the vids. How much shorter is it? I know MAD said he opted for the original and I'm about the same height/weight. Would a 6-footer be too tall for it?

I also didn't see anything for the spreader bars in the vids. Did you just opt not to use them for the demo?

MacEntyre
02-02-2011, 15:03
Thanks for the vids. How much shorter is it?
I don't know.


Would a 6-footer be too tall for it?
No, it is plenty long for a 6' person.


I also didn't see anything for the spreader bars in the vids. Did you just opt not to use them for the demo?
The Light Hiker doesn't have spreaders. The net was in my face because I had the non-structural ridgeline too loose.

MAD777
02-02-2011, 15:08
I asked Dale (at Tree2Tree) about the lengths. He said the Lighthiker is 8" shorter than the standard SB.

Also, the Lighthiker does not have spreader bars on the net, it's "A" frame.

Alan
02-02-2011, 15:37
You guys are KILLING me with all this Switchback talk!
Time to place an order...

MAD777
02-02-2011, 15:46
You guys are KILLING me with all this Switchback talk!
Time to place an order...

... and I thought you LOVED your TrekLight Double ... of course ... how could you really know for sure ... unless you ordered a Switchback and compared them! ;)

Sorry, I'm just trying to enable you :rolleyes:

Alan
02-02-2011, 15:51
:laugh:
I do love my Trek Light but everyone talks about how cavernous the Switchback is when they get in.
Besides, it's only money! ;)

sandykayak
02-02-2011, 17:26
The Treklight Double (I have one) is pretty big, but the SB has the integrated net (which you can tie up out of the way), double bottom (to insert a pad or to have a double layer to protect your butt from skeeter bites), and tie-outs.

I've been looking at net options for the Treklight and they all involve a lot of work or money. I like Brandon's best and there's no way I could sew a U-shaped zipper! But it will never have the same feel as an integrated net.

Keep the Treklight for yard hanging.... the SB is really sweet... (another enabler here :D)

Alan
02-02-2011, 17:39
You're not helping!
You're feeding the gear acquisition addiction!
:laugh:

JaxHiker
02-02-2011, 18:18
Thanks Mike. Looks like the HH and SB are the same length. I'll have to see if I can imagine where I'd be with 8" less.

pizza
02-02-2011, 19:18
You guys are KILLING me with all this Switchback talk!
Time to place an order...
No doubt Alan, I have a feeling I'll be ordering a light hiker myself come spring time. I don't even need one as I already have a Traveler and Blackbird but I guess I suffer a bit from (G)ear (A)cquisition (S)yndrome. :lol:

islander
02-02-2011, 19:42
No doubt Alan, I have a feeling I'll be ordering a light hiker myself come spring time. I don't even need one as I already have a Traveler and Blackbird but I guess I suffer a bit from (G)ear (A)cquisition (S)yndrome. :lol:Now that there is Funny!:lol::laugh:
(G)ear (A)cquisition (S)yndrome
I suffer from being very GASsy lately too:scared:

Alan
02-02-2011, 20:10
Correction!
Order has been amended to a 1.9 DL!
(Thanks for answering all my questions, Mike)

MAD777
02-02-2011, 20:29
We will expect a full report, Alan! :)