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  1. #1
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    Traveler Sock "Breathing" trouble

    Disclaimer: I'm a newb.

    Recently got into hammocking, and shortly got myself a Traveler Sock. Before I get to the trouble, let me throw out that this a sweet piece of kit, easily one of my favorites.

    The problem: Under high/gusty winds I am getting cold air leaking in fairly notably. Nothing like being open to the wind w/o the sock, but still, I don't like it. I've spent some considerable time trying to diagnose the source of this leak.

    1) I thought I'd left the zipper open; a few times, yes, but closing it didn't solve the problem.
    2) The Zipper itself leaking under wind; after checking I'm fairly certain not.
    3) The hook and loop end closures; these, I'm thinking are the source. of the leaking air. There are two possible causes, I would not be surprised to find both in conjunction.

    A) The closures tend to pull back toward the center of the hammock and open up. I am going to order up a pair of micro-biners and clip the sock to the structural ridgeline right below the webbing D rings.
    B) The sock is "breathing" as in functioning like a lung or bellows under high/gusty winds. I think this is the most likely issue. The wind plays havoc on the sock causing the internal volume to increase and decrease. The result is the hook and loop ends "breathe" cold air.

    Solving the problem:
    1) I think it would be worth selling with, or at least recommending micro-biners to keep the sock ends from pulling back and opening over time.
    2) I am experimenting with grip clips to create tie-out points. I found today that there was a big difference with vs without. The tie-outs tension the sock, limit its ability to "breathe" under wind and keep me from getting cold drafts. Currently I have one on the non-door side, centered between head and foot ends, and slightly more toward the ridge-line. I put a second on the zipper-side, near wear my head lies. Next time I will place a second on the foot end, and I am considering two rather than one on the non-zip side. I believe a bit of experimentation and adding panel-puls to the basic sock would make a good piece of kit into a superb one.

    On a side note, I find the even without the gusty wind issues, the sock gets in my face a bit. I'd be happy for a panel pull just for that.

    Anyhow, that's my experience. I'm curious to hear from others. One last reminder, I am not saying that the Traveler sock is terrible (its one of my favorite pieces of kit) I just think it needs a couple tweaks before it's a truly sexy beast.


    God bless,
    Adam

  2. #2
    Bubba's Avatar
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    I was thinking the same thing aboiut tie outs. I find it does sag into me a bit. I added some small continuous loops to the inside piece of some grip clips so the when the grip clips pull the sock out, I can attach hammock tie out to the clips on the inside as well. Haven't had time to test it out yet but its should work. I always use a tarp so I have not encountered any wind on the actual travel sock.
    Don't let life get in the way of living.

  3. #3
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Traveler Sock "Breathing" trouble

    This would probably end up heavier, but I wonder if a 2-part sock would be less affected by billowing. I'm thinking of a fairly close fitting underquilt protector and a top cover like a sewn in bugnet. Hmmmm....
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  4. #4
    the wind is coming "through" the breathable fabric some in heavy gusts. it's a tradeoff because as soon as you go to a more windproof fabric it becomes less breathable which leads to more condensation issues. you give up total wind-proofness for more breathability. i assume you're experiencing this without a tarp, a tarp would block some of that and keep the wind from pushing the sock in on you as well

  5. #5
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Traveler Sock "Breathing" trouble

    Good point! The tarp is still your 1st defense against the wind: with or without a sock.
    Mike
    "Life is a Project!"

  6. #6
    BillyBob58's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by warbonnetguy View Post
    the wind is coming "through" the breathable fabric some in heavy gusts. it's a tradeoff because as soon as you go to a more windproof fabric it becomes less breathable which leads to more condensation issues. you give up total wind-proofness for more breathability. i assume you're experiencing this without a tarp, a tarp would block some of that and keep the wind from pushing the sock in on you as well
    Exactly what I was about to type! I was thinking that this may not be as bad as you think it is, Jumpmonkey. Condensation is one of the main pains around here, especially when using all kinds of various socks. You say " Nothing like being open to the wind w/o the sock", so despite the leakage, you are still getting a noticeable benefit, right? And even more when managing to block most of the wind with a tarp or on nights where it is not windy? Sadly, you might find that if you manage to defeat the leakage that you now have a much worse problem and things are getting wet inside your sock, or at least very humid. I think most here would say that humid is colder and damp or wet might mean it's time to go in the house.

    I sometimes use a HH Super Shelter which has a separate sil-nylon undercover and a "breathable" top cover. This thing leaks air like a sieve. It is quite loose around the edges, and the wind can get in pretty easily under the edges. As if that should not be breathable enough, they purposely put a big old hole in the cover that goes near your face, which then may or may not be facing the wind.

    HH used to say that, when you moved in the hammock, it would act like a bellows which would help pump some of the more humid air out of that hole and let in some less humid. IOW, it was purposely designed to do exactly what you are describing.

    Despite all of this, I have noticed that this OC noticeable cuts the wind chill and increases the temps inside, plus provides some light water resistance to any sideways rain that manages to blow in past the tarp. I really feel better with that small HH tarp when I am using the HHSS with it. However, there have been a few times where conditions were just right ( or wrong ) and, even with that big old hole in the OC, I could tell that the humidity was spiking upwards inside the OC. The condensation can be the problem that really does you in. When that sock is cold enough, not only will the moisture you give off condense on it, it will freeze and then snow on you every time you move!

    Not trying to discourage your experiments, by all means go for it and tell us how it does for you! You may well improve it's function! Just throwing a caution out there, something to be aware of.
    For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory that is to be revealed to us....that the creation itself also will be set free from its slavery to corruption into the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groans and suffers the pains of childbirth together until now.
    Romans 8:18,21-22

  7. #7
    Doctari's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by warbonnetguy View Post
    the wind is coming "through" the breathable fabric some in heavy gusts. it's a tradeoff because as soon as you go to a more windproof fabric it becomes less breathable which leads to more condensation issues. you give up total wind-proofness for more breathability. i assume you're experiencing this without a tarp, a tarp would block some of that and keep the wind from pushing the sock in on you as well
    Yea, breathing is really NOT a problem, not breathing is! Slight breathing, gusts if you will is actually a good thing, to a point.
    Rig your tarp so it is across the direction of the wind, ie: if the wind is from the west or East, hang your hammock oriented N to S. Trust us, the more you reduce breathability, the wetter you will get from condensation. I have used a sock that didn't breath very well, got SOAKED so I got cold! Try the tarp orientation before giving up on your sock.

    For ME, I have in fact discovered that leaving the zipper open, even with a VERY breathable sock actually allows me to be warmer. That is provided that I have my tarp set up correctly.
    When you have a backpack on, no matter where you are, you’re home.
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  8. #8
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    I appreciate much the responses. In reply:

    1) Yes a tarp would help, but not tarping up in fair weather is one of the things I love about the sock. Guess I am getting a little greedy.
    2) I could be wrong, but I don't think the problem is the winds gusting hard enough to push through the membrane. I believe the sock matterial is a good balance between breathable and "windproof." Grip clips and a little staking out and the problem so-far has been veritably neutralized.
    3) I do not think this is a huge problem. It is a slight annoyance. Even with it the sock is a huge boon. I previously stated and continue to affirm, this is one of my favorite pieces of hammock kit. I simply think a small change in design offers a significant increase in versatility in comfort. More on that after more testing.


    Thanks and God bless,
    Adam

  9. #9
    the reason i never put tieouts on the sock, was that i feel you want the sock to hang below the underquilt (with a few inches between uq and sock). if the sock and uq are touching you lose some of the warmth advantage. pulling outward on the sides with grip clips/tieouts will lift the bottom of the sock upward and cause it to contact the uq shell which would reduce efficiency (more convective heat loss i believe), it would cause any condensation that would normally pool in the bottom of the sock to get all over the uq etc, so there's a few definate advantages of not pulling the sides out and letting it hang loose on the underside instead.

  10. #10
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    Warbonnetguy,

    Thanks for the heads up on those things. I'll keep an eye while I do my experimentation. Maybe a bit of shock cord on a bottom pullout will be necessary for "EXTREME SOCKING!" Because it makes me feel cooler when I consider out of parameter equipment usage as "extreme" rather than stupid.

    A bit aside, I'm loving my traveler and sock. Unfortunately you're going to be busy with another Superfly soon.


    God bless,
    Adam

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