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  1. #11
    stevebo's Avatar
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    Like everything else in life, its a trade off.................on the one hand, synthetic bags still maintain some of their insulation when wet, and they dry pretty quick in the sun and tend to be cheaper than down. ON the negative side, they are heavier than down , and will lose their loft with time. (they don't last forever, and also are heavier, and dont pack as small as down)

    With down, its warmer, lighter, packs smaller---and if you take care of it, will maintain its loft and last a long time., on the negative side, down is more expensive, and is pretty worthless if it gets wet, is hard to dry if it gets wet, etc.

    I used a synthetic bag for years, and a few years ago (after I just about froze to death on a very cold early spring night---long story, dont ask!) My wife bought me a down bag for Christmas---Ill never go back, its so much better than what I had before! Hope that helps!
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  2. #12
    mbiraman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by threeoten View Post
    So, I read that down material can absorb perspiration and lose its effectiveness. Also, when it's not being used it will be super compressed in my pack for long periods of time. I've heard this can degrade it's effectiveness as well.
    Don't worry about down and body perspiration etc. As long as you can air the quilts out once and a while , just like a down bag, you'll be fine. You can have down packed for long periods of time but takes longer to fluff back up ,,,a dryer and tennis balls does wonders. Down is not as fragile as you think unless it gets wet, then it needs some real drying time. I used down for months on end working the BC coast in spring when everything is wet and dew on the bag and never had any problems. Have a look at Warbonnet Outdoors, Jacks R Better and Hammock gear, to name a few, for all your needs. Great quality gear , comfortable and a good investment.

    good luck
    " The mind creates the abyss, the heart crosses it."

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  3. #13
    Burning at both ends Dblcorona's Avatar
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    So, I read that down material can absorb perspiration and lose its effectiveness. Also, when it's not being used it will be super compressed in my pack for long periods of time. I've heard this can degrade it's effectiveness as well.
    Most of your shell materials have a dwr that keep the moisture out. I have been using down for a long time and have had very little issue with it. That issue I think is a little overblown with how good the materials are these days.

    How long is long? I have seen bags left 3-4 weeks compressed and they lofted up fine. Maybe took a little longer but not bad. I wouldn't recommend doing that all the time but.........
    "We don't stop hiking because we grow old,
    we grow old because we stop hiking."

    -- Finis Mitchell,

  4. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by threeoten View Post
    I came across this one. It sounds like a suitable TQ for the price, no?
    http://www.enlightenedequipment.com/prodigy.htm
    If you are set on synthetic insulation for your top quilt, you might want to check out the Owyhee from Arrowhead. I own his synthetic underquilt and am impressed with the quality. Not sure about the zippered footbox on the enlightened equipment. I have some "zipper snagging the hammock" paranoia.
    http://arrowheadequipment.webs.com/a...s/show/1313864

  5. #15
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Don't keep any quilt, whether it's down or synthetic, stored in a compressed state. Either hang them or lightly place them in an oversized pillow case or laundry bag.

    Down is not hard to keep dry. The only time I would consider synthetics is when I want a quilt so thin that making it from down wouldn't be worth it. I made a 1/2" thick synthetic quilt for summer nights.

    Pads are lightweight but they are bulky. Not really a problem though as most people use them as structure in their frameless packs of attach them outside their pack.

    However, pads are not nearly as comfortable as an underquilt. But, they are a nice option for getting by until funds become available.
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  6. #16
    dejoha's Avatar
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    +1

    Great advice/info/summary from RootCause.

    Regarding packing your gear, I don't think you'll have an issue if you're talking about packing the insulation for day and then unpacking it every night. Consider long-distance thru-hikers who do this for up to a year.

    A bigger concern isn't the frequent packing/unpacking regime, but the loss of loft from getting the bad dirty via body oils and perspiration. A light bag liner (silk, cotton) helps protect against that and is easier to clean than a sleeping bag. Wearing clothes to bed can also help.

    Let's say you're planning a year-long packing trip where your gear will be packed and unpacked daily. I would just do some preventative maintenance to keep the bag/insulation clean and find a way to wash the bag every quarter to regain its loft.


    Quote Originally Posted by RootCause View Post
    Prepare for sleeping in your hammock as you would for sleeping on the ground. you need insulation both over you and under you.

    Ground:
    TOP- Sleeping bag over you.
    BOTTOM- Insulating pad under you. (The bottom part of your sleeping bag is squished, providing no insulation value, that's why you need the pad.)

    Hammock:
    TOP- sleeping bag, blanket, quilt, sheet, or nothing. Depending on the temperature and your preference, any of these will work for you.
    BOTTOM- a foam pad just in ground sleeping, or an underquilt will work for you.

    This is where it gets harder to make decisions. HOWEVER, to boil down all the threads on this topic: the material that will provide you (generally, arguably) the best combination of light weight/low bulk is goose down. The higher fill power, the better.

    The cottage manufacturers who frequent this board make excellent products. There are a lot of them. Good luck choosing.


    Yep, either a sleeping pad in the hammock, or an underquilt will be needed if nighttime temps will be below about 70*F.

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