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  1. #1
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    Comfort ratings?

    Hi, Just wondering about something probably really obvious to experienced hammock campers (I'm a newbie though at it)- sleeping bags and underquilts are given a comfort rating of say, 5, but how are these figures worked out?
    If you wear insulation, sweatshirts & jogging, etc while you sleep (as hammock users usually do), that will change the comfort temperatures at which you can sleep using a particular sleeping bag or underquilt.
    I've just ordered a OneWind underquilt 35 - 50 but I should be able to sleep comfortably in lower temperatures by wearing more insulation or using a sleeping bag, should I not?
    If I combine an underquilt as above with a 2 sleeping bag, what sort of temperatures should I be abae to sleep in comfortably without having to wear loads of insulated clothing?
    Like I said, probably a daft question but curious
    Thanks guys

  2. #2
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    Several factors here. First, the UQ stated rating seems a bit odd. Typically it's a single number. Let's assume it's a 35 UQ (but at that price, I'm a bit skeptical.) Next, I'm guess you'd use the sleeping bag as a TQ instead of being totally inside of it because most of its insulating power is marginal for any portion that's under you in a hammock. Another factor is whether you are a cold or warm/hot sleeper.

    Many here will suggest that, in general, that you should factor in a 10 margin. I concur. I then would expect the average person to be reasonably comfortable down to 45 or so with the UQ being the limiting factor.

    Insulated sleep clothing is a tricky subject. To really work it needs to be loose and not trap perspiration. Plenty of threads on the forum address that.

    If you want to sleep comfortably at lower temps, you'll probably end up investing in, at least, a second UQ.

    I'm sure plenty of others will add to what I've said here.

  3. #3
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    The two numbers could make sense if it's the UQ they sell with two layers. One can be used as TQ, or they can be doubled up below.

  4. #4
    LowTech's Avatar
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    We have a couple of those UQs and I've always found their rating system to be weird. I don't use mine much as it stays in Florida (were it doesn't much go below 40 ) and I'm there a couple times a year.
    My lady uses hers when she hangs (not as often as I do) so I've just considered it to be 40 . She also has the snap in blanket and she's used that combo during the winter when it goes below freezing here w/ her lowest being 19. She has never had a problem being cold w/ that and a base layer plus hat.

    Do they pack small? NO.

    Oh, and I think the suspension is the weirdest thing I've come across, so I redid mine differently.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by mmveets View Post
    The two numbers could make sense if it's the UQ they sell with two layers. One can be used as TQ, or they can be doubled up below.
    That would make sense if the rating was for their combo setup. But the site states it as for just the UQ.

  6. #6
    Senior Member oldbiker's Avatar
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    Way to vague for an answer plus, way to many factors that contribute to YOUR comfort.

  7. #7
    hutzelbein's Avatar
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    I can't speak for Onewind, but a "from x to x" generally makes sense to me. I would simply assume the lower temperature to be the under comfort limit for warm sleepers and the higher temperature the limit for cold sleepers. If manufacturers don't follow an official rating protocol, they should explain their rating method on their website, though. I couldn't find anything on the Onewind website, so maybe contact them and ask.

  8. #8
    Senior Member sidneyhornblower's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ColinR View Post
    Hi, Just wondering about something probably really obvious to experienced hammock campers (I'm a newbie though at it)- sleeping bags and underquilts are given a comfort rating of say, 5, but how are these figures worked out?
    There's an industry standard for measuring sleeping bag insulating qualities, I believe: EN13537.

    For some discussion around how other manufacturers rate their stuff and some criticism of the standards themselves, here's a couple of links to peruse:

    https://sectionhiker.com/backpacking...ature-ratings/

    https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4725822/

  9. #9
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    I think it would also depend on what vendor you are looking at. For example, Hammock Gear lists under their FAQ page that they switched their temperature ratings (not sure when exactly) for the listed temperature to be the comfort temperature rating instead of the survival rating that used to be the norm. Just read the fine print and don't be afraid to ask questions!

  10. #10
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    Not sure how UQ ratings are arrived at, I can guess, but for sleeping bags it's ISO-23537 (EN13537 was sufficiently successful it became an international standard).

    That standard lists four ratings, from warmest to coolest: upper limit; comfort; lower limit; extreme. The testing assumes the person (they use a mannequin for the actual testing) is wearing something like a thin layer of clothing - thermals, pyjamas, that sort of thing. For most practical purposes only comfort and lower limit are of use. Comfort is meant to be for the average woman, limit for the average man but I prefer to think of them as being for cold and warm sleepers respectfully.

    A bit of reverse engineering, i.e. if you know the amount and quality of the insulation and loft then it's not too difficult to make something suitable for the resulting temp rating. So if a sleeping bag rated to Xdeg then you know its loft so an underquilt of the same loft should be good to somewhere around Xdeg. I've got Cumulus (they're Polish) quilts and an underquilt so they are using the same down and materials and the loft and therefore temp ratings are comparable.

    The "standard" temp ratings are just that: a standard. Whether they are practical or not is moot, so long as they are consistent is all that really matters. It is up to an individual to relate those to their personal likes/dislikes and situations.
    Better weight than wisdom, a traveller cannot carry - Viking proverb

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