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  1. #1

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    Blackbird XLC Double Zippers ??

    I currently own the 2016 Ridgerunner and have been wanting a Blackbird XLC for a while. However, I do not like how the Blackbird XLC can only be entered from one side.

    1 - Is it true that the zipper now begins at the head-end vs. the mid-section like the ~2015 model? If so, this is great news since I did not like the old design.
    2 - Are there plans for dual zippers like the Ridgerunner? This might be a deal breaker for me..

  2. #2
    Member Sh4ggy's Avatar
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    That and I preffer to lay the opposite way than the blackbird is why I ended up in a Chameleon. I do like my other Warbonnett products though so I imagine it's a sweet hammock.

    Sent from my LG-LS997 using Tapatalk

  3. #3
    gunner76's Avatar
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    Brandon does make mirror image BB's, head to the right feet to the left.

    I have found that only being able to get into my BB's ( I own 5 ) from one side not to be an issue as I can only enter and or exit from one side at a time anyway.
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  4. #4
    hutzelbein's Avatar
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    Entering from both sides would not work with the Blackbird, even if the zipper would theoretically allow it: the footbox and the shelf are in the way. If you want an integrated gathered end hammock you can enter from either side, you have to look elsewhere.

  5. #5
    Lost Woodsman's Avatar
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    Like hutzelbein said, zippers on both sides wouldn't work due to the footbox and the shelf. I would trade access from both sides for that shelf any day. I toss a ton of stuff in the shelf and now can't imagine not having it there.

    And yes the zipper, when zipped closed, starts at the head end. I've got the standard head left, feet right lay but you can request the opposite angle if you prefer it.
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  6. #6
    Member Sh4ggy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunner76 View Post
    Brandon does make mirror image BB's, head to the right feet to the left.

    I have found that only being able to get into my BB's ( I own 5 ) from one side not to be an issue as I can only enter and or exit from one side at a time anyway.
    Not that I need another hammock, but I didn't know that. I still like having zippers on both sides to adjust the underquilt if nothing else. It's something that bugs me when I'm in my Elemental Hammock. I still like the looks of an XLC WBBB

    Sent from my LG-LS997 using Tapatalk

  7. #7
    hutzelbein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sh4ggy View Post
    I still like having zippers on both sides to adjust the underquilt if nothing else.
    There's a simple solution for that problem: get a Wooki It doesn't really need adjusting. You only might need to pull it out a bit after getting in the hammock. From then on it stays in place.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by gunner76 View Post
    Brandon does make mirror image BB's, head to the right feet to the left.

    I have found that only being able to get into my BB's ( I own 5 ) from one side not to be an issue as I can only enter and or exit from one side at a time anyway.
    Unfortunately, I do not know if I need a right or left hammock since I've only used the Ridgerunner. Any ideas on how I might figure this out?

    While I also enter from a single side, I do not always know which side works best until I set up camp. This is especially important when car-camping in Texas since campsites are close to each other. I prefer having the foot-end towards my own campsite since I can look out my slightly opened tarp to see if my crew have begun to wake up. I also prefer setting up the Ridgerunner hammock closer to one of the tarp walls to provide extra space to enter the tarp; porch mode has greater security when facing towards my campsite. Is this common practice or am I just OCD??


    Quote Originally Posted by hutzelbein View Post
    Entering from both sides would not work with the Blackbird, even if the zipper would theoretically allow it: the footbox and the shelf are in the way. If you want an integrated gathered end hammock you can enter from either side, you have to look elsewhere.
    Many online pictures show the bugnet being staked to the ground. Would the hammock/shelf/footbox not work properly without this practice?


    Quote Originally Posted by Lost Woodsman View Post
    Like hutzelbein said, zippers on both sides wouldn't work due to the footbox and the shelf. I would trade access from both sides for that shelf any day. I toss a ton of stuff in the shelf and now can't imagine not having it there.

    And yes the zipper, when zipped closed, starts at the head end. I've got the standard head left, feet right lay but you can request the opposite angle if you prefer it.
    Currently, a single zipper starts at the head-end. What if each of dual-zippers were attached at the foot-end of each side of the hammock? This would allow the owner to choose which side the dual-zippers rest when fully closed. For instance, after closing the bugnet and keeping the dual-zippers at the head-end, the user now has the option of keeping the zippers on the left side or the right side.

  9. #9
    hutzelbein's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by W8lkinUSA View Post
    Unfortunately, I do not know if I need a right or left hammock since I've only used the Ridgerunner. Any ideas on how I might figure this out?
    Sure, buy a simple no-net hammock and use it at home for a couple of nights. Then you should know which direction you prefer.

    Quote Originally Posted by W8lkinUSA View Post
    While I also enter from a single side, I do not always know which side works best until I set up camp. This is especially important when car-camping in Texas since campsites are close to each other. I prefer having the foot-end towards my own campsite since I can look out my slightly opened tarp to see if my crew have begun to wake up. I also prefer setting up the Ridgerunner hammock closer to one of the tarp walls to provide extra space to enter the tarp; porch mode has greater security when facing towards my campsite. Is this common practice or am I just OCD??
    Well, with a bridge hammock, you can look over the foot end. With a gathered end, you cannot. Either you can adjust to it, or a GE is not for you. In some situations you will have to decide if you want the head-end pointing towards a specific direction, or the entry. I usually prioritize the entry side, because I don't like having to walk around the hammock to enter or when exiting.

    Quote Originally Posted by W8lkinUSA View Post
    Many online pictures show the bugnet being staked to the ground. Would the hammock/shelf/footbox not work properly without this practice?
    This is not the point. The shelf is essentially a pocket or a big saddle bag that is attached to one side. If you wanted to enter from that side, you would either have to climb over the shelf (that is usually staked out) or under it. I supposed you could enter under the shelf, but if your shelf is loaded, you would kick out the contents. And you would collide with it.

    With the footbox it's a bit different. It wouldn't be advisable to climb over it, because it shortens the side. If you were to put too much weight on the side, the fabric would rip. You could climb under it, but in combination with the shelf, it would be more bother than to walk around the hammock.

    If you need access from both sides, get another hammock. The BB design just doesn't do what you want it to do.

    Quote Originally Posted by W8lkinUSA View Post
    Currently, a single zipper starts at the head-end. What if each of dual-zippers were attached at the foot-end of each side of the hammock? This would allow the owner to choose which side the dual-zippers rest when fully closed. For instance, after closing the bugnet and keeping the dual-zippers at the head-end, the user now has the option of keeping the zippers on the left side or the right side.
    You would have to change the zipper type, if you still want the bug net / top cover to zip off completely. Warbonnet uses a simple coil zipper which only allows two sleds if the zipper is non separable. They would have to use a two-way separating zipper to achieve what you want. Unfortunately, you can't cut these zippers to length. They come in fixed lengths, and they are a lot more expensive than coil zippers. This means that you don't have a large margin of error. The best option would be if the zipper was exactly the right length. But I don't know, if anybody makes two-way separating zipper in that length (after all you need about 22' of zipper!) at all, and if they do in different increments (e.g. 22' and 2"). I think other manufacturers like Dream Hammock and Dutch simply adjusted their hammock design, so that the zipper can be a bit shorter. But this might not work with the Blackbird Design.

    I don't like the XLC zipper design particularly myself, but then I don't see the need to completely remove the bug net / top cover. I find the design of the shorter Blackbird pretty much perfect, and I'm lucky that I'm short enough so that the BB works for me. Maybe WB will make a BB XL (non-C) one day...

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by hutzelbein View Post
    ...
    Lots of great points, buddy. You've managed to address all of my concerns.

    I had hoped to save money by not purchasing a cheap hammock, but you've just convinced me.

    In retrospect, dual-zippers could be a major weight issue since I've only seen big winter jackets using this zipper method. These zippers are typically very large, so this weight isn't justifiable. I can also see a heavy shelf dumping onto the ground just before a cold midnight stroll.. :-P

    Thanks again for all your insight!!

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