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  1. #31
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    Is Waterproof/Breatable the best of both worlds?

    All,
    I'm trying to figure out how to best build a sock for my needs. There are a lot of designs, each with their own advantages. Yes, I would love to find the holy grail of completely waterproof along with zero condensation. If I can't get that, then I want to get as close to that as possible. Here are my three primary goals
    1) Added warmth in Winter
    2) Added water protection when it's raining sideways for hours on end
    3) Very lightweight

    Also wondering about the general design:
    A) over the ridge line - nice to have the extra room over your head, can sit up, can do things other than just sleeping while protected by the sock (e.g., read a book)
    B) under the ridge line (pod style) - less material (lighter), less space to warm up, surely would require a breathing hole of some sort

    Given the 2 seasons ("rainy" vs "cold") and 2 possible designs, maybe that ends up being 2 different kinds of socks - I don't know.

    I'm seriously considering using waterproof breathable cuben fiber. That stuff is really expensive so I want to get this right the first time. I do plan on making prototypes out of cheap plastic and tape to make sure I get the measurements right and it all works like I think it will.

    Questions for the group:
    - is over-the-ridge-line "better"? If so, why
    - Can WP/B cuben be fully zipped up and serve as water protection without causing too much condensation? - maybe I should provide a hole near my head for sleeping instead of just a draw cord "sack" (not sure if my body will produce too much water vapor all by itself or not).

    I need help - any advice would be much appreciated

    Thanks

  2. #32
    King Dork brooklynkayak's Avatar
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    Sock

    Quote Originally Posted by tylojuky View Post
    In this case, do you mean leaving an opening at the top of the inverted "U" (in the middle of the zipper)?
    In all case I leave the opening between the center and head of the inverted "U" zipper. Having near my face to allow more breath to exit. This is near the top, near the ridge line.

    I really like the design of the Warbonnet sock. I like the fact that it uses very breathable fabric. Otherwise I'd have to have a bigger vent.

    Waterproof breathable materials like Goretex or breathable Cuben would not be my choice. They don't breath as well as water resistant breathable materials.
    I'm pretty there would be more of a condensation issue.

    Sure you have to use a tarp with a sock made of highly breathable material, but I would always want some kind of a tarp anyway. It can be used for shade, reduce heat loss from wind and allow you to sleep with the sock open with some protection.

    I am able to use a smaller tarp with a sock than I would otherwise, especially in winter.

    The Warbonnet sock is suspended above the ridgeline making it less claustrophobic and actually should reduce condensation compared to hanging under the ridge.

    And an update,
    I just got home from an overnight hike in Harriman State Park NY.
    Temps were 19 f, winds gusts 41 mph, 60% humidity and it snowed a bit.

    I used a 20 deg f full length UQ and a 32 deg f sleeping bag, wore a hooded fleece, down hooded sweater and a thermal base layer under my hiking pants.
    The only time I got cold was when I opened my sock a few times to get in and out to take care of business.

    I had absolutely no condensation and that was with the sock only opened 3 or 4 inches.
    Of course it was a windy night and I'm sure that helped, but if it wasn't windy, I would have opened the gap more.

    The sock definitely helps a lot with cold wind. Although the WB sock weighs 9 ounces, I think it saves me having to bring a heavier bottom quilt, top quilt/bag and larger tarp.

    I suspect I'd want a 0 deg f bottom and 20 deg f top if I didn't use the sock.

    Also the sock reduces the cold nose effect extensively, another comfort plus.
    I don't have to sleep with anything over my face, which is something i can't do.
    Last edited by brooklynkayak; 11-24-2013 at 11:45.
    A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.
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  3. #33
    OutandBack's Avatar
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    If I had the sewing skill here is how I would make my winter sock.
    Basic design/pattern would be JustJeff's adjusted for 11' hammocks.

    I would use two types of breathable ripstop.
    The top would be 1.0 ripstop the most breathable I could find.
    The bottom half (think 2QZQ UQP) would be made from 1.0 or 1.1 DWR ripstop.

    The zipper would be U shaped (NOT Inverted) and have enough pulls that you could vent at both ends as well as open from the center to get out.

    Just how I would do it, hth
    O&B
    May your mileage in the backcountry exceed your post count.

  4. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by brooklynkayak View Post
    In all case I leave the opening between the center and head of the inverted "U" zipper. Having near my face to allow more breath to exit. This is near the top, near the ridge line.
    Thanks - I just got the mental picture. That sock is over the ridge line so you're not talking about an opening your face sticks through like the hood of a jacket - you've got some room in there. You just mean keeping the opening "high" (above you when prone - water vapor rises) and closest to the biggest source of the water vapor (your head / exhaling). Not sure why I didn't get that until just now

    OutandBack,
    You got me thinking: There's no reason why the whole sock has to be made of the same material.

    What about this idea:
    Make the ends of the sock out of WP/B material - say, the first 12-18 inches on each end. That would give me some protection from wind-blown rain where I'm most vulnerable. The top could be breathable like you suggest (I don't intend on eliminating the tarp). Now for the bottom (?). I want some protection from splash / wind-blown rain down there too. Maybe it could be completely waterproof (sil-nylon/cuben - something that doesn't breath at all).
    Since water vapor is less dense than the rest of the atmosphere (most of the time) would a vapor barrier on the bottom cause me any problems? I don't want to wake up with a pool of water down there.

    Thanks for the input - keep it up.

  5. #35
    OutandBack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tylojuky View Post

    OutandBack,
    You got me thinking: There's no reason why the whole sock has to be made of the same material.

    What about this idea:
    Make the ends of the sock out of WP/B material - say, the first 12-18 inches on each end. That would give me some protection from wind-blown rain where I'm most vulnerable. The top could be breathable like you suggest (I don't intend on eliminating the tarp). Now for the bottom (?). I want some protection from splash / wind-blown rain down there too. Maybe it could be completely waterproof (sil-nylon/cuben - something that doesn't breath at all).
    Since water vapor is less dense than the rest of the atmosphere (most of the time) would a vapor barrier on the bottom cause me any problems? I don't want to wake up with a pool of water down there.

    Thanks for the input - keep it up.
    I am in the camp that everything below the tarp need to be breathable.
    DWR ripstop is amazing at preventing splashes from getting thru to your UQ yet it is very breathable.

    My first UQP was a HH made from sylnylon.
    I always found dampness on my quilt from every use.
    No fan of gortex, it has never worked for me in clothing.
    Breathable CF !?! I don't know, my gut says don't trust it. YMMV

    Additional ideas:
    On saving weight. I would really customize the sock for a specific hammock and underquilt.
    Sizing the sock for the least amount of excess material.
    With hammock and quilts hung my sock would almost touch the UQ.
    It would be supported at the top with a RL.
    The U shaped door would have shockcord loops/buttons so the door could be rolled up and fastened allowing you to look out in porch mode.
    At the ends of the sock where the hammock pokes thru the slits could be large with velcro to adjust the size. Leaving these more open might give you good venting with the door closed.

    hth
    O&B
    May your mileage in the backcountry exceed your post count.

  6. #36
    King Dork brooklynkayak's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tylojuky View Post
    Make the ends of the sock out of WP/B material - say, the first 12-18 inches on each end.
    That sounds like a good plan.

    Be aware that highly breathable water resistant materials like what are commonly used in windshirts and ultralight bivys( I forget the brand names), do repel most water.

    I use an UL bivy under a small tarp when ground camping and find that it repels almost all the splash, spray and condensation drips.

    I often times wear a windshirt as a shell in light rain instead of a waterproof jacket and find that I am dryer than under a waterproof shell.
    I theorize that there is less perspiration buildup under the windshirt and what ever rain makes it though usually evaporates.

    For this reason I don't see splash, spray and spindrift being a problem if my bottom isn't totally waterproof.

    I may be wrong, but a waterproof bottom could restrict breathabilty enough that condensation could gather in the underquilt.

    This is only a theory, but a lot of people lean towards less breathable materials when they make socks and they always seem to report some condensation issues.

    I think of a hammock sock as being like a bivy for ground campers and I personally wouldn't want to ever use a waterproof breathable bivy because of all the moisture that builds up inside on a cold damp night.

    And for that reason water resistant is my choice, but I am at one end of the spectrum.

    Your choices do make sense and could prove to be an improvement over the Warbonnet in most conditions.
    A great many people think they are thinking when they are merely rearranging their prejudices.
    -- William James

  7. #37
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    Moisture build up in winter sock?

    Agree. We're really talking about degrees of breathability.
    Sil-nylon = zero
    WP/B material = somewhat breathable
    DWR = more breathable
    Plain nylon = even more breathable
    Nothing at all = the most breathable possible

    The way I see it, the trick is to restrict the "breathability" enough to see some benefits (warmer, some rain protection, etc.) but not restrict it so much that the naturally-occurring water vapor we put off is trapped and condenses to liquid form. I'm talking generally about the entire sock as a whole. So some strategic areas could be very waterproof/non-breathable as long as there is enough breathability in total and in the right areas to let water vapor escape. Just need to figure out where those areas are and how big they need to be for "comfort" (which can vary greatly depending on temperature, dew point, wind, and so on).

  8. #38
    OutandBack's Avatar
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    Even mosquito netting will collect frost from your breath.
    That is why proper venting and no hammock net is so important.

    WBBB netting -20F @5am overnite test in backyard.

    O&B
    May your mileage in the backcountry exceed your post count.

  9. #39
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    Moisture build up in winter sock?

    Yes. And different conditions require different amounts of breathability. So my design needs to include some options for that as you have suggested (zippered openings, ends that open, etc.)

    Maybe I'm thinking if this too simply but that sort of makes sense in my mind.

  10. #40
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    Smile

    Maybe something as simple as a cotton uqp would keep you warm enough and you would not have the infamous "interior snow" of a full blown sock.
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