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  1. #1
    hammock_monk's Avatar
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    Breathability Versus Water Resistance: Help Me Choose a Fabric!

    Project: Two down under quilts.

    Query: What fabric to use.

    I was planning to use 1.1 ripstop but I have read several posts observing that the wind goes right through it. I also live in a damp climate and have read posts warning about rain splashing onto the bottom of under quilts. But I have also read posts warning against the way fabrics can trap moisture in your down quilt and/or reflect moisture back to the body. So my question is what is the best kind of fabric to use for my under quilts?

    I would really like to get some useful feedback on this before I purchased fabric for my project. I would also welcome recommendations on vendors but my main concern at present is what fabric to use.

    Thanks,
    hammock_monk

  2. #2
    Senior Member mattyg's Avatar
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    If you use ripstop it needs to be calendered. Otherwise your down will poke through. Look for down proof materials

  3. #3
    hammock_monk's Avatar
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    If I go with ripstop, this is the material I plan to order. But I wasn't sure if I should go with the silnylon or something else. Thus my question about breatheability versus water repellence.

  4. #4
    Mr. Arrowhead pgibson's Avatar
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    Breathability is always best. You don't want to trap moisture in the quilt, be it coming from you or an outside source. Use a properly sized and pitched tarp and you don't need to worry about rain getting on your quilt.
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  5. #5
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    The calendaring process required to make downproof nylon fabrics will provide a high degree of wind resistance while remaining breathable to water vapor your body gives off. Additional water resistance for ground splash can be had with a DWR treated fabric.

    A water proof fabric such as silnylon is not generally desired for UQs because it will act as a vapor barrier trapping body moisture against you and feeling clammy. It would also take much longer to pack the quilt or for it to loft because the air could only enter/exit at the stitching holes.

  6. #6

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    FWIW,
    I used a calendared (down-proof) 1.1 ripstop that was DWR treated for the outer shell and a non-treated 1.1 calendared (down-proof) ripstop for the inner shell. Both are breathable and I think the added water resistance the DWR treatment gives the outer shell is nice insurance against wet down (think rain splash).
    jason

  7. #7
    SwinginIt's Avatar
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    M50 is supposed to be highly wind resistant and still be breathable enough. It is also considerably lighter than 1.1. At least that's what I have heard and I hope it's true since I'm about to order an UQ made from it.
    "As a well spent day brings happy sleep, a well spent life brings happy death." -Da Vinci

  8. #8
    hammock_monk's Avatar
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    I wondered about M50 but I heard it's very slippery and so hard to sew. I don't think I'm up to it. Jason, where did you purchase your fabric?

  9. #9

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    HM
    I tend to buy my fabric from http://www.backwoodsdaydreamer.com.
    Most of the DIY'ers here are very familiar with their 1.1 oz ripstop olive seconds for $3.20/yd. The owner Scott, often posts around here. Great prices, cheap and quick shipping and always responds to email questions.

    You may also want to look at: http://thru-hiker.com/materials/breathable.php , http://www.questoutfitters.com/, http://www.owfinc.com/ and http://www.titaniumgoat.com/Fabric.html .

    You should also take a look at this thread - http://www.hammockforums.net/forum/s...t=59748&page=2 .
    there is a pretty good discussion about dwr, breathabiliity and wind resistance.
    jason

  10. #10
    hammock_monk's Avatar
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    Jason,
    Thanks for the additional input! I think I'm going to go with 1.1 ounce calendared ripstop for the inner layer (unfortunately, DIY gear supply seems out of stock on forest green) and 1.1 ounce DWR in olive brown for the outer layer.

    I'm going to purchase the 850 FP down from Wilderness Logics, along with the baffle netting and shock cord.

    Probably will place my order later today; I may try to get the suppliers on the phone so that they can provide input on my order as well.

    Thanks for the help!

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