Originally Posted by stevebo
Billey bob, did you ever get the velcro working on your peapod? What did you end up doing?
Stevebo: Nope, it is still not up to par. I tried using animal/pet combs to clean the Velcro, but not much luck yet.
I need to get on that with winter just beginning, but I am being lazy due to the luxury of having several more options available to me(MW4UQ, synthetic Yeti, HHSS). Also, it is not exactly unusable, it will stick together and stay together well enough for use. It is just not anywhere near as quick and easy to get it closed up as it used to be.
Also, I figure after a while this problem will show up with other pod users. The Velcro for the bottom closing of my older HH Explorer UL is MUCH looser than the one on the "new"( a demo) Expl UL I have been trying out lately. So I'm guessing this is just something that happens with Velcr: become weaker over time. Weaker, but not useless.
Here is what I am thinking.
1: Learn to use a sewing machine or find a seamstress, and just replace the Velcro. I suppose when I pull the stitches out, down is going to try and fly out?
2: Get some Velcro or that Velcro substitute ( 3M?) I have read about, and sew on(get someone to sew on) a few small reinforcement patches over the top of the original Velcro.
3: install a few snaps.
Anyway, I need to get this done. Because I think the best overall 10*F I have spent in a hammock was in my PeaPod. Why? Because of the superior head area insulation I had compared to other set ups. Which meant less condensation in the area of my face/chin/neck. Really none that I can remember.
Sidewinder:Around 4 or 5am the temp dropped to 41-42*F and I closed it full over me. I was a little afraid of re-breathing my own CO2 that I stayed awake. I was feeling some chill and noticed that it was coming from the Velcro area. I was wearing shorts and a tee shirt (normally I wear a smartwool base layer) but thought I would see how warm it was with just minimal clothing. Also had on a fleece hat. The cold seeping from the Velcro area was enough to make me worry about the 20 degree temp rating.
Sidewinder: keep in mind that Ed Speer (pod designer), a self proclaimed extra cold sleeper, rated ( for Ed ) the 20F pod- used by itself- at 50F ON TOP. This no doubt was when used with his Speer hammock, which I think pushes the pod upward and causing more gap than most other hammocks. Filling the gap- and also blocking the warm air from rushing out any vent hole you might open, is the key to toastiness in the pod. The Speer PeaPod would have no trouble reaching a 20F rating top side if you were sleeping on the ground where it could completely drape down on you. But some hammocks cause a lot of gap, it varies. If you were OK at 42 with very little clothing, you are probably doing pretty darn good.
If you hike with any form of puffy clothing, it can be a big help. I don't wear it, but just drape it over my chest/neck area to fill gaps or make a faux neck collar. Or I put it on "backwards" with arms through the sleeves. This seems to make it puff up better.
But even way better if you don't mind a little extra weight and you have something available: a light- even summer weight- TQ draped over you. This not only will fill most gaps head to toe and allow you to have a bigger vent with out all of your warm air rushing out, consider this:
If you have 2.5" of loft in the pod, and you fill any gaps with say another 2 or 2.5" of loft from a summer TQ or even bag and maybe some puffy clothing, now how thick is the top side loft? 4 or 5", which is deep winter insulation.
The Pea Pod probably won't be as warm on top( due to top gap) as a separate 20F TQ of 22 oz or so, which would drape right down on you. Then again, the built in head protection and lack of draft will make up for some of that. Maybe a lot.
The pod was designed for the 8.5 ft long Speer hammock, and it never goes over the end knots, that would be way too tight. Isn't a Traveler 10 ft long? So clearly you are going to need some hammock outside the pod on the ends. That is why it is a good thing it is 9 ft long.
With my ( very narrow) 10 ft long Claytor No Net and the Speer hammock, I would usually adjust/ tighten it on the ends so that I have at least 5 or 6" between the inside bottom of the open pod and the unoccupied hammock. Then when I get in, the hammock sinks down into the pod, and when I close it it is just about touching my back, with pretty much full loft.