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  1. #1

    USGI sleep system with bivy?

    Does anyone use the USGI sleep system? I have two complete USGI sets and while the entire set is heavy, I have them. I used to sleep on top of one while getting in the second if needed. Does the gortex bivy act as a barrier to heat loss the way a pad does? I also have poncho liners and wool blankets I could use in side the bivy if a bag is too much. I have one down bag, an old USGI mountain sleeping bag that is great but also heavy. I have a bivy over this one also.

    I know about TQ and the benefits but I have this stuff already and would like to utilize it.

    Any experience/ideas/combos that work best?

    Im in Florida= summer 95-72, winter 75-25 (only a couple freezes a year.)

    Brand new Claytor jungle hammock

  2. #2
    Senior Member gargoyle's Avatar
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    Any insulation you lay on compresses and becomes somewhat useless.
    There are quite a few members using the gi bag. Using a pad or uq you'll be fine.
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  3. #3
    Member dontknowyet's Avatar
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    dontknowyet

    wyattd5, I have several of the BDU colored Modular Sleep Systems. Yes they are heavy as well as bulky, but if neither of those are an issue I say use them. With the three piece system it is extremely versatile. With the wide variety of temps you have down in Florida it would be a great bag for you. The inner black bag being the colder weather is nice when the temps dip pretty low. The outer green bag is light weight and thin for warmer weather. The outer GoreTex bivy cover is great to keep the whole thing clean and dry and being GoreTex breathes very well. I am a cold sleeper and the Modular Sleep System keeps we warmer then a -15 Down Mountain Hardwear bag I have. They are also very durable as the military has no choice but to make them to last.

    On a side note the newer ACU colored ones are almost identical with an extra smaller stuff sack if you want to carry just part of your system. We (Cold sleepers in my unit do not believe the new bags are as warm as the older ones) Hope this all helps.

  4. #4
    I have the older woodland camo but I have both stuff sacks.

  5. #5
    Member dontknowyet's Avatar
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    The older ones did not come with 2 stuff sacks. Are they the lighter green/ gray color? Glad to hear you have the older style bag.

  6. #6
    I have the black stuff sack and I bought the foliage one later.

  7. #7
    i have the black bag and bivy. I'd like to get the green bag.

    How well is the green bag? I figured it'd be a good back to take on early fall overnighters

  8. #8
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    anyone ever bivy in a hammock alone with no tarp? i realize that the water needs to go somewhere (mesh hammock) but ....just wondering

  9. #9
    Senior Member Just Jeff's Avatar
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    I've used a bivy with no tarp. I spent a night in a blizzard at 10k ft where the dry snow was blowing under my tarp and landing on my insulation, so I bought a bivy for the next snowy trip.

    Then I made a hammock sock and travel pod so now I don't have to. Look at the bottom of this page and you'll see a picture of a gore-tex hammock bivy.
    http://www.tothewoods.net/HammockCampingWarm.html

    Gore-tex breathes acceptably well by "breathable material" standards...which means it passes about 2% of the vapor. The military system is designed acceptably well for the constraints that the military put on them (price, durability)...but putting a plastic bag that passes 2% of the vapor around a bunch of insulation, especially in winter, isn't the best design as far as condensation management. But it's better than getting rained on. If you want it to be warmer, put the bivy on the inside and the bags on the outside, and camp away from rain and water.

    On to the OP's question. You can make those systems work well for a hammock. It won't be as light as down, but you can cut the weight by more than half if you can sew or know someone who does. If I had two complete extra sets, I would cut them up and make them more efffective. Cut one winter bag into an UQ and one into a TQ...use that for your winter kit. Cut one summer bag into an UQ and one into a TQ...use that for your summer kit. In shoulder seasons, use the winter UQ and the summer TQ.

    The designer of the original Kickass Quilts started by cutting a North Face bag into an UQ. He wrote a tutorial for it...I think it was posted on www.whiteblaze.net but I'm sure there are links to it here if you search.
    “Republics are created by the virtue, public spirit, and intelligence of the citizens. They fall when the wise are banished from the public councils because they dare to be honest, and the profligate are rewarded because they flatter the people, in order to betray them.” ~Judge Joseph Story

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  10. #10
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    Randy introduced me to the USGI sleep system as well as the GI-issue ECW (extreme cold weather) bag. The USGI system and the ECW work VERY well as long as you don't mind the weight. We car-camp so the weight really isn't a problem with either system.

    The waterproof bivy shell from my USGI system is great! During one of our Texas Hang trips to Stephen F Austin State Park, I used 2 of the USGI bags inside the bivy shell. With my tarp pulled halfway back, I stayed completely dry even though the weather was miserable that weekend.

    Hard to see in this picture since the bivy shell AND my TrekLight double hammock are camo, but here it is...


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