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Thread: newbie question

  1. #1
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    newbie question

    Hello everyone I'm a newbie here so I do apologize if this question has been answered before. I tried several searches and couldn't figure out how to word it in a search.

    I already own a great sleeping bag but I want to be able to sleep with it in a hammock. I know the hammock will compress the insulation and make it useless if I just lay in the hammock with it, but what if I cut a hole at the top of the bag and one at the bottom and reinforced them with some webbing to keep it from ripping, then threaded the hammock through the holes?
    It sounds in theory like the hammock would be supporting my weight, with the insulation hanging under the hammock fluffed to full size, and I'd still be able to zip the bag on top of me. I'll add a little velcro to the holes to keep them closed up when I'm using the bag on the ground and I should be fine.

    Of course I understand this wouldn't work with a hammock that has a spreader bar holding it open since the holes would have to basically be the entire width of the sleeping bag, but for the cheap hammock I have that has no bars it should work fine.

  2. #2
    Dutch's Avatar
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    This has been done before and successfully. The bigger the sleeping bag and the smaller the hammock the better.
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  3. #3
    Senior Member Bleemus's Avatar
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    Think of it this way. Your sleeping bag gets compressed when you sleep on the ground exactly the same as it does when you hang in the air. The only thing you need is a wee bit more insulation because you are in the air. Don't start cutting things till you have tested.

    I hang in my Bridge hammock toasty warm with a 26 inch wide Thinlite pad down to 40 degrees. This is with a sleeping bag that only weighs 1lb 2oz. The pad weighs 5 ounces. Just bought a Blackbird for testing due to it's lighter weight and hope I can pull something off that saves me a few ounces.
    Bleemus

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  4. #4
    mbiraman's Avatar
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    I'd be inclined to leave the sleeping bag as is and use pads, CCF, under you and open the sleeping bag 3/4 and lay it over you. Pads don't cost much and you still have your bag to go to ground if you have to.
    " The mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it."

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  5. #5
    Senior Member Pipsissewa's Avatar
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    I was thinking of doing the same thing Sandbox suggests, but I like Bleemus's logic. Do you put the pad inside the bag or lay the bag on top of the pad? Does it make a difference? I'm a little concerned about wind/weatherproofing the outside of my (down) bag. Does anyone put a windproof layer around their hammock? Does that make it warmer? I'm a super cold sleeper (I routinely sleep in a 20 degree down bag and rarely have to vent!) In fact, the bag I was thinking of modifying for my new hammock is a Big Kazoo (oversized Blue Kazoo by TNF) that was always too big for me to warm up. But I think I'll do some 'sperimentin' before I go cutting into it. What do you think, Sandbox? Anyone else?


    OK--I watched Ramblinrev's video on underquilts on the cheap. Nothing new there. How about a couple of trash bags that you fill with dried leaves when you get to camp? Now that's REALLY cheap and LIGHT! Has anyone tried this? How would you hang them?
    Last edited by Pipsissewa; 04-26-2010 at 15:09. Reason: updating
    "Pips"
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    In quiet covers, cool and gray.

    ---Leigh Buckner Hanes

    Surely, God could have made a better way to sleep.

    Surely, God never did.

  6. #6
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    I came up with a super easy test for this. unfortunately I don't have anywhere to hang my hammock and actually support my weight at home. Instead I hung the hammock on some pillars that won't support my weight and just tested the bag around the hammock with some pillows in it.


    I used a cheap fleece sleeping bag (one of the $15 ones that unzips into a blanket). This one just happens to have a rip in the bottom that I never got around to sewing so I threaded the hammock through that rip, hung it from some pillars on my front porch, stuffed it with pillows and pulled the hammock up around the pillows as if they were my body.
    The result was promising. As I expected the bottom of the bag hung free which would leave even down insulation uncompressed.

    The first problem I see with this setup is that to vent you would have to leave the bag mostly zipped and just push it down around your waist. If you partly unzip the bag for venting it would fall away from your body completely

    The hammock I used is an ultracheap fairly uncomfortable net hammock called the IMPS-net survival system. I would imagine a wider hammock would be a problem with a mummy style bag, but with this fleece bag I could unzip the entire bottom side and be fine (the entire top is open since it's a rectangular bag).

    This may all be pointless since pads are cheap and proven to work so well, but I'm curious as to how it will work. If anyone in a cooler climate would care to test my theory I would greatly appreciate it. If you use a rectangular bag you won't have to do any cutting to test it.

  7. #7
    gargoyle's Avatar
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    I did the SB mod and installed some loops on the bag for a shockcord suspension. (not my idea, others before me recommended it) With the shockcord holding the bag, you can unzip and the bag hangs similar to an uq.
    Lots of folks have toyed with the idea.
    pics in my gallery.
    Ambulo tua ambulo.

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