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  1. #1
    New Member butler129's Avatar
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    Newbie Question about Using a Pad

    I have been hammock camping on and off for the past year by just using a sleeping bag with a pad underneath me in the hammock. Is there anything wrong this?

    Usually every morning I will find both moisture between the bottom of my sleeping bag and my pad. Is there anyway to help fix this? Why is this doing this?

    Also, I am interested into looking for any other options as well (underquilts, etc.) but my money is limited. Any suggestions would be great!

    Thanks guys.
    Chris

  2. #2
    Senior Member TadTheTinker's Avatar
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    I am new to the whole hammock world, but I don't use a pad. From what I have read and can tell, the underquilts and top quilts will give you more air space to prevent condensation, but they can get expensive pretty quick.

    I know there will be others that can give you far more help than I can.
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  3. #3
    New Member diesel's Avatar
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    pads vs uq's

    I've mostly used pads. They work ok... I carry one anyway and use it as my chair before bed. The problems with pads are: They slip out from under me as I toss and turn during the night and I sometimes get up against the hammock bottom without any pad under me and get a cold spot pretty quick and it wakes me up.
    One inexpensive solution is the SPE. Speer hammocks sells a "segmented pad extender". Picture a nylon sleeve that your pad slips into with 4 smaller "wing" sleeves that you cut a cheap walmart closed cell foam pad to fit and put pieces into. This stops the "cold spot" thing but it can still be trouble to keep the pad aligned with your body all night if you rollover etc.

    The underquilts take up more room and are expensive but work well. If you base camp or car camp they're great. If it's REALLY cold you'd want one. I have a post a few entries down from this one about "new idea for uq" or something like that..... it might help too.

    good luck! experiment.
    Last edited by diesel; 05-11-2011 at 10:59. Reason: referenced wrong post

  4. #4
    Senior Member catalyst's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by butler129 View Post
    Also, I am interested into looking for any other options as well (underquilts, etc.) but my money is limited. Any suggestions would be great!

    Thanks guys.
    Chris
    Check out this thread. There's a good matrix on underquilts under $200. If you're open to using a pad for your feet, the 2/3 or 3/4 UQ's are less expensive. I'm looking into either Leighlo's 2/3 down UQ or Arrowhead's 2/3 synthetic UQ. Both are very reasonably priced.
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  5. #5
    Senior Member zukiguy's Avatar
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    Moisture

    The pad acts as a vapor barrier. Your body generates plenty of warm, moist air while you sleep that passes through your sleeping bag. The vapor can't pass through your pad and it's slightly cooler (near the dew point??) so it condenses there.

    Putting the pad inside your sleeping bag will help significantly but this may feel kind of clammy against bare skin. I just recently had the same problem with the short piece of foam I carry for use under my legs. I awoke with a damp bag the first morning. After that I curled the foam and stuffed it into the foot box. No more rolling off the pad and no more wet bag. It's a win/win.

    If the clammy feeling really bugs you another option is to make a pad cover from synthetic fleece. It may be a little damp in the morning but will dry very quickly. It's easier just to wear some thermal top/bottoms though.

    Welcome and good luck,

    Zukiguy

  6. #6
    New Member butler129's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for all of the information.

    Zutiguy, thanks for the info about the pad acting as a vapor barrier. That topic is particular has been a little confusing for me since I've gotten into hammock camping.

  7. #7
    Senior Member wirerat123's Avatar
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    I have a fleece cover for my pad, it makes a huge difference.
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  8. #8
    Member
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    I have a double layer hammock. I put the pad between the layers. Just the thin nylon and my body heat is enough to reduce condensation on the pad. Also the pad doesn't shift between the layers.

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