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  1. #21
    New Member LazyMan's Avatar
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    I've never really gotten my down bag wet (damp in a tent before). My basic rule is if I'm not in it, its in a waterproof sack.

  2. #22
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    I do feel that you need to take more care with a down filled bag. But like others have said here...most of us backpackers don't want ANY of our stuff getting wet. If you have a down bag you know it absolutely can't get wet. Saying that, how comfortable are we with getting a synthetic bag wet? I'd say my sleeping quarters...syn or down....would be respected with the same care.

    With that in mind I live in a really wet area. The western North Carolina mountains can get rather soggy and humid. My solution to having down, which I LUV for the comfy factor and packability, is to get a bag with a water proof or water resistant covering.

    I further protect the down by getting a waterproof stuff sac. I also don't get my bag out of that sac until I'm ready to go to sleep. I've been out with a lot of campers that will get their bag out and put it in their hammock or under their tarp and run off for some recreation and leave camp.

    Some weather hits fast and can blow that super do duper light down bag out of the protective cover and get it soaked before you know what happened. I either see that occur OR you slip and fall at a river crossing and submerge your bag. That's the worst.

    I've used down ever since I realized my syn bag was huge in a stuffsac compared to a down bag. To me, it's worth the extra care needed to keep it dry just for the extra packability. The fact that it's so much more comfortable that syn bags blows it out of the water...so to speak.

    Most of my trips include river running. I love hitting a stream or river and going up or down a mile or so to get well off the beaten path. When I go on one of these trips I make sure my "essentials" that can't get wet are on the top end of my pack. I even push a trash bag down in my pack before packing it so I can tie it shut at the top to keep things 100% dry if I take a dunk in the soup.

    The ONLY time my bag has a chance to get wet is when I'm sleeping in it...but it's under my tarp at that time.

    Just be careful with your gear and know your ability when dealing with rivers. If you is scared use synthetic fill. It's just as good and I wouldn't be upset in using it...I just prefer down.

  3. #23
    New Member
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    I got my bag wet after week of rain at Polar Ural. Another case - heavy fog (we walk in cloud about 3 days this spring). In both case after night in tent bags is slightly damp, аfter several nights they got wet. There is no sun and i could not dry them.
    My decision for hammock camping - synthetic UQ, and down TQ.

  4. #24
    WV's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinkerman View Post
    I just finished making a UQ with Primaloft One. To get around the problem of needing to be stabilized every 6" I used a soldering iron to cut the insulation into 6" strips. The soldering iron fuses & stabilizes the Primaloft. You really need to squeeze it down firmly with a straightedge to cut the insulation. Also do the cutting in a WELL VENTILATED AREA. I don't know what is in the smoke that is produced when cutting but I sure wouldn't want to inhale much of it.
    I then sewed the UQ fabric together using baffles to form a box just like you would make for a down UQ I made the quilt with a differential cut so that the boxes are actually 4 1/4" wide on the top side (the side against my body) & 4 3/4" wide on the outside. I then slid the strips (6" wide) into the boxes. this gives the UQ an "overstuffed" feel and eliminates the cold spots that would be found if the insulation were sewn through. I made my baffles run the length of the quilt. I really don't see how any of the insulation can ever shift but I haven't used it that much yet to be sure. So far I've been happy with it. I've slept into the 30s with it.
    I used down for years ( decades actually) without a problem back in my tenting days but the one time it did get wet was enough to convince me that synthetic has a lot to recommend it for wet conditions. Wet down is not only useless as insulation, but it weighs more than you would believe. Hopefully some of you may find these suggestions useful.
    Quote Originally Posted by Strung out View Post
    I tried the baffled Primaloft type construction mentioned...

    very poor results here

    I made 2 layer 7" strips from 3oz P-One to fit into 6-7" baffles

    the 7" insulation strips formed themselves into 4" diameter cylinders inside the baffled chambers after a little use.

    = large areas with no fill

    oh well, I got some good practice sewing baffles, and now I can stuff this thing with the down that I just ordered

    FYI, the UQ was built based on the KAQ instructions and the baffles are about 2 1/4" tall

    Still trying to figure a decent use for these primaloft strips...
    These two posts are great examples of the way knowledge spreads via HF. Thanks, Tinkerman and Strung out! I'll add a third way to handle Primaloft that has worked for me (but I will probably try something based on their efforts eventually, also). I read somewhere that Primaloft in garments should be quilted at least every 24", so in making a top quilt I sewed a single layer of Primaloft to the top cover (ripstop) by sewing around the edges and putting a single line of quilting longitudinally down the middle. Then I sewed the bottom cover with another layer of Primaloft and made three crosswise quilting lines about 24" apart. Then I put a third layer of Primaloft between these two that was unquilted, just sewn around the edges. (This was actually sewn on top of one of the other parts. When I put the top and bottom assemblies together, stitched around the edges and turned it inside out, the unquilted layer ended up in the middle.) So far (1 yr. +) the unquilted layer hasn't moved or bunched up. This quilt is pretty warm. You could make a good summer quilt using only the two outer layers of insulation.

  5. #25
    Fish<><'s Avatar
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    A very nice thread for anyone considering a DIY quilt. Thread bumpin...
    "We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it."- G. W. Sears

    My forum name is Fish<><; I'm in the navy; and I hate sleeping on the ground. If I didn't need ground to walk on or measure resistance to, I think I could happily give it up.

  6. #26
    gunner76's Avatar
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    I use both. Which one depends on the circumstances.
    Merchants Mill Pond SP Swamp Hang

    www.neusioktrail.org ..................... Free Hammock Classes

    Hammock Gear Time Line ..............Hammock Friendly Sites in NC

    I am 18 with 42 years of experience.

    Hammock Hangers...taking over the world..2 trees at a time !

    Warbonnet BB 1.7 and a whole lot of other great gear from the vendors on HF

  7. #27
    Member Bitts's Avatar
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    Back when I was truly active (100+ nights in the backcountry, 1000+ miles per year) I would never have dared to take a down bag with me. Spent way to many nights shivering my tail off in a soaked synthetic bag. With one of the guys who brought a down bag curled up next to me so he wouldn't freeze over night.

    The other side of this is that in the course of ruffly 10 years I went through a bag every 2 maybe 3 years when I pushed it. The synthetic bags/quilts have their pro's but durability, weight & pack size are not one of them.
    Perhaps in the mad scramble for sexy light weightness I and everyone else has forgotten the most important function of gear not that it must weight nothing, look good and be cheap, but that it must keep you alive and increases your survivability.
    -Andy Kirkpatrick

  8. #28
    MAD777's Avatar
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    It's strictly down for me, but I pack my quilts in a roll top dry bag. No plastic trash compactor bags or such. I count grams but the dry bag is right up there with the 1st aid kit - sacred!
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  9. #29
    Fish<><'s Avatar
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    I think if I were to ever carry down, I would dry bag it for sure. Probably gonna use syn forever though...
    "We do not go to the green woods and crystal waters to rough it, we go to smooth it."- G. W. Sears

    My forum name is Fish<><; I'm in the navy; and I hate sleeping on the ground. If I didn't need ground to walk on or measure resistance to, I think I could happily give it up.

  10. #30
    WV's Avatar
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    Going back over this thread, I see that there's quite a lot of information about Primaloft and enough variation to suggest that some of it (possibly including mine) is off the mark.

    Also, I've read widely that down lasts much longer than synthetics.

    Experiment, and share your results.

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