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  1. #1
    Member SteveToTheO's Avatar
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    Down Fill power question

    Ive been looking at making an underquilt next and I was searching for down when I thought about hotels having down pillows. After some research I found out that a local hotel uses a down pillow with a 550 fill power down. I know that normally people go for 700 to 800 fill power but how much difference would it make on a 3/4 quilt. Im not a super light hiker but whatere I make will be lighter than the sleeping bag Im using now. Would the drwbacks outweigh the benefit of the 550 down possibly being free? Im about 5'9" and I havent decided on an actual lenght yet but I wont be doing much if any winter camping. I dont mind buying a 700 or 800 FP pillow from ebay or overstock but if I can get this for free and it will work I may have just found a way to mcgyver myself a cheap UQ.

    Thanks for the input

    Steve-O

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    If you are talking about used pillows from the hotel my first response is... eww... If they are tossing them there is probably a good reason. "Down" pillows are often a mixture of down and feathers particularly when you get to lower fill rates. If you don't mind the feathers which add weight but not warmth then you might be ok until you get to the colder temps in which case the better down is worth the cost.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
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  3. #3
    Member SteveToTheO's Avatar
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    Lol. I work at this particular hotel on the weekend so it wouldn't be a gross one. I figure you would sleep on it if you stayed there so it should be clean enough to make a quilt from.

    Steve-O

  4. #4
    Member SteveToTheO's Avatar
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    Plus if you waited till the pillow was so gross before you tossed it you would lose so much business it wouldn't be funny. Pillows are something people notice and a certain amount of proactive care is required if your a part of a decent chain.

    Steve-O

  5. #5
    Senior Member G.L.P.'s Avatar
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    Rev is right i really wouldn't use it... go get yourself some good down
    there are alot of feathers in pillows and not much down so your UQ will be heavy and weight to temp ratio will not be that good...
    down does not cost much Hammockgear.com it's $6.50 and oz and they pack it any way you would like ... i think in the end you would be more happy with quality down then an old pillow
    JMO .....
    It puts the Underquilt on it's hammock ... It does this whenever it gets cold

  6. #6
    Member SteveToTheO's Avatar
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    I went and checked out one of our pillows and they are a down feather mix so that's out but I don't know if you guys read the post about the my luxe pillows on ebay but they are supposed to have 800 fill power down and I think they were all down rather than a mix. You can get a king size pillow for anywhere between 40 and 70 bucks with over 20 oz of 800 fp down. That would be 130 dollars worth of 6 dollar down. Lol. Maybe I'm getting something crossed in my head but that sounds like the best deal. I was just hoping our pillows were going to be comparable.

    Keep the input coming!

    Steve-O

  7. #7
    Senior Member G.L.P.'s Avatar
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    i really question the true fill power at that price...
    if i remember i know a few ppl that made UQ out of them the weight was really hight for 800 fill down
    it might be 800 fill down mixed in with a lower fill rate down

    besides i can say this i use nothing but HG down and there down is more along the lines of 850 fill it's very high quality down ...
    It puts the Underquilt on it's hammock ... It does this whenever it gets cold

  8. #8
    Senior Member Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    If I understand correctly fill power is a rather arbitrary measurement except when conducted under very specific and regulated conditions. I think it the case that down processors have to be able to prove their fill count by standardized techniques. But once it gets to the product manufacturer it is more or less up for grabs. I'm not saying manufacturers are making outright fraudulent claims, however... here is an example of what I am talking about.

    We purchased pillows which were listed on the plastic wrapper as 800 fill power down. I just checked the tag that must not be removed under penalty of having to watch 300 hours of Lindsey Lohan movies... (but I digress).

    It lists the contents as "White Down (minimum 85% White down) Contents Sterilized". I like the pillow, don't get me wrong, and there probably is some 800 fp down in it. But don't count on the wrapper descriptions and manufacturers claim as fully and completely accurate.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
    Mrs. Loftus to Huck Finn

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  9. #9
    Senior Member G.L.P.'s Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    If I understand correctly fill power is a rather arbitrary measurement except when conducted under very specific and regulated conditions. I think it the case that down processors have to be able to prove their fill count by standardized techniques. But once it gets to the product manufacturer it is more or less up for grabs. I'm not saying manufacturers are making outright fraudulent claims, however... here is an example of what I am talking about.

    We purchased pillows which were listed on the plastic wrapper as 800 fill power down. I just checked the tag that must not be removed under penalty of having to watch 300 hours of Lindsey Lohan movies... (but I digress).

    It lists the contents as "White Down (minimum 85% White down) Contents Sterilized". I like the pillow, don't get me wrong, and there probably is some 800 fp down in it. But don't count on the wrapper descriptions and manufacturers claim as fully and completely accurate.
    i agree 100%

    "We purchased pillows which were listed on the plastic wrapper as 800 fill power down. I just checked the tag that must not be removed under penalty of having to watch 300 hours of Lindsey Lohan movies... (but I digress)."
    Nice.... i spit water out all over my Mac LOL
    It puts the Underquilt on it's hammock ... It does this whenever it gets cold

  10. #10
    Señor Member wisenber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SteveToTheO View Post
    Ive been looking at making an underquilt next and I was searching for down when I thought about hotels having down pillows. After some research I found out that a local hotel uses a down pillow with a 550 fill power down. I know that normally people go for 700 to 800 fill power but how much difference would it make on a 3/4 quilt. Im not a super light hiker but whatere I make will be lighter than the sleeping bag Im using now. Would the drwbacks outweigh the benefit of the 550 down possibly being free? Im about 5'9" and I havent decided on an actual lenght yet but I wont be doing much if any winter camping. I dont mind buying a 700 or 800 FP pillow from ebay or overstock but if I can get this for free and it will work I may have just found a way to mcgyver myself a cheap UQ.

    Thanks for the input

    Steve-O
    Using 550 versus 800 would mean that the weight would be about 32% more for the same level of loft. The other area where you get caught is that a 550 will not compress nearly as much as an 800. In short, you're pack will be heavier and fuller using 550. If you're not a gram weenie, the weight may not be much of an issue, but a 550 quilt sure will fill up a pack.

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