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  1. #1
    rais'n hammock's Avatar
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    I may be done with my Chameleon Top cover...

    I may be done with my Chameleon Top Cover and any other shell type system unless someone can help me solve the frosty snow fall when getting in and out.

    This last weekend we enjoyed a quick overnight trip. The temperature got down to 9F and never was above 15F during the night (while in the hammock). When getting up for the nightly stroll I found getting in and out a challenge in avoiding scraping the thick frost off the top cover. The result is a pile of snow in the hammock.



    I normally use a frost bid and it works very well at protecting my top quilt from moisture.


    But the area around my head is also all covered in frost.



    Including the mesh vent.


    I have had the Chameleon with the top cover out on my last few outings. The first was right around freezing and I only noticed a little condensation. The last couple were below freezing and this last one was the worst for temp and moisture. With my old setup I would use the frost bib and just throw it outside the hammock on one side and get out on the other. No problem and the frost on the bib either stuck well to the fleece or was outside the hammock anyway. With the top cover I have to unzip one side and try to throw both the bib and the unzipped half of the cover over the ridgeline without getting snowed on. The frost falls from the top cover very easily when disturbed.
    When I got up for my nightly stroll I noticed the issue and even opened up more ventilation (unzipped) opposite the mesh window.


    This did not help as the frost continued to build and was thicker in the morning. I am not convinced the extra 2-5F extra provided by the top cover is worth the hassle. I am going back to using just the frost bib and no top cover until temps are above freezing and the dew point is not an issue.

    Has anyone else found a way around this issue or am I the only one who sees this as a problem?

    I know that Dutch just came out with the breathalyzer but it is material similar to the top cover and will still have a similar issue. My bib is doing the same thing as the breathalyzer and keeps the frost away from the foot end of the hammock very well. It also does not allow for frost to easily fall when touched or disturbed.

    I still think the best method is the bib with just a tarp. Even with little ventilation under tarp I can get in and out without touching the tarp or getting frost/snow in the hammock.
    Outdoors > Indoors
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  2. #2
    TxAggie's Avatar
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    Look into vapor barriers. This is exactly the type of thing they combat. A lot of that moisture is probably coming from your body.

  3. #3
    rais'n hammock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TxAggie View Post
    Look into vapor barriers. This is exactly the type of thing they combat. A lot of that moisture is probably coming from your body.
    That is my point. The top cover is acting as a vapor barrier. The moisture will come from breath no mater what is over your mouth or above you. I am saying that the open air may be the best way to deal with it. I have used a neoprene mask and other things but they just trap moisture closer to your face. Not something I like.

    Can you recommend a vapor barrier that will not hold moisture close to your face or on your gear?
    Outdoors > Indoors
    I love me some XeroShoes
    An optimist is a man who plants two acorns and buys a hammock. ― Jean de Lattre de Tassigny

  4. #4
    TxAggie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rais'n hammock View Post
    That is my point. The top cover is acting as a vapor barrier. The moisture will come from breath no mater what is over your mouth or above you. I am saying that the open air may be the best way to deal with it. I have used a neoprene mask and other things but they just trap moisture closer to your face. Not something I like.

    Can you recommend a vapor barrier that will not hold moisture close to your face or on your gear?
    Theres been a lot of recent discussions about it. To use a vapor barrier effectively, it has to be in between you and your quilts, either as another sleeping bag or as clothing.

    A good discussion is here:
    Illustration - Vapor Barrier Liners (VBL)
    https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink?sha...1&share_type=t

    https://www.rbhdesigns.com/products/vb-bag-liner

    http://www.westernmountaineering.com...es/hotsac-vbl/

  5. #5
    rais'n hammock's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TxAggie View Post
    There’s been a lot of recent discussions about it. To use a vapor barrier effectively, it has to be in between you and your quilts, either as another sleeping bag or as clothing.

    A good discussion is here:
    Illustration - Vapor Barrier Liners (VBL)
    https://r.tapatalk.com/shareLink?sha...1&share_type=t

    https://www.rbhdesigns.com/products/vb-bag-liner

    http://www.westernmountaineering.com...es/hotsac-vbl/
    Thanks for the links. I am not sure this is the issue. I do not have a problem with moisture from my body. This is from breathing. I prefer not to have things on my face or breathing warm air. These VBL are for inside a quilt. I don't have any issue with moisture there or above my quilt. This really is just from breathing at night, which I am also partial to...
    Outdoors > Indoors
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    An optimist is a man who plants two acorns and buys a hammock. ― Jean de Lattre de Tassigny

  6. #6
    Senior Member TrailSlug's Avatar
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    This is the exact reason many of us do not use these "top covers" as they are like a rain coat and do not breath. Your best bet is to get quilts that will support the temps you are going to hang in and let the air move freely to prevent this issue.

  7. #7
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    I don't think vapor barriers have anything to do with top covers. Basically, any time you use a top cover it will collect condensation from your breath, unless you have just incredible ventilation (something I've never achieved). I expect condensation with a top cover, and that little vent on the Chameleon top cover basically does nothing. If it's below 20* F, I do like a top cover, and just deal with the snow.
    "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." Ralph Waldo Emerson

  8. #8
    TxAggie's Avatar
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    I dont think many people realize how much moisture escapes your body while sleeping. If you have a top cover over you, plus a bib hanging from the ridgeline, AND the vent above your head, most of the moisture from your breath is either staying on the bib or venting out.

    Just trying to help. Good luck.

  9. #9
    all secure in sector 7 Shug's Avatar
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    This is one reason for not using hammock socks or top covers as I always get the ice crystals.
    Plus I don't like being closed in as I love the openers of a hammock.
    Though top covers and socks do provide warmth and wind break; I would always be warm but damp.
    Believe me...I tried and tried.
    Shug
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  10. #10
    OneClick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shug View Post
    This is one reason for not using hammock socks or top covers as I always get the ice crystals.
    Plus I don't like being closed in as I love the openers of a hammock.
    Though top covers and socks do provide warmth and wind break; I would always be warm but damp.
    Believe me...I tried and tried.
    Shug
    Exact same thoughts here. No need to fix something that isn't broken, add more weight, bulk, hassle and less view. If I get cold with my insulation and a nice big tarp, then I need to make some adjustments ( proper insulation, clothes, lower tarp, site selection, etc)

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