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Down Fill - 600 vs. 700 vs. 800
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Karple T

Locale: Mid-Alantic
Down Fill - 600 vs. 700 vs. 800 on 03/07/2011 10:39:00 MST Print View

I found a great site about down that
gives info about differences and proper care.

Anyone have any others site that give good info?

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
re on 03/07/2011 11:30:43 MST Print View

What do you do if it gets wet?

Dry it out in dryer?

Is there anything you can do to restore loft after it dries out?

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: re on 03/07/2011 13:40:03 MST Print View

"Is there anything you can do to restore loft after it dries out?"

Experienced down sleeping bag users learn methods to avoid the sleeping bag getting wet in the first place. Then, in the event that it gets slightly wet, you want to dry it out as much as possible before re-stuffing it. In other words, do not wait for it to dry out before restoring the loft.


Karple T

Locale: Mid-Alantic
Down Fill on 03/07/2011 14:02:43 MST Print View

Hey Jerry,

This link has good info and links to find out about restoring down loft.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
re on 03/07/2011 15:30:20 MST Print View


I'll try the dryer on low, and maybe put in tennis balls

Karple T

Locale: Mid-Alantic
"Down Fill - 600 vs. 700 vs. 800" on 03/07/2011 15:53:03 MST Print View

Anyone have any other sites that give good info?

You can see in these picks the dramatic differance between the three but does
that make it worth the extra $$$ ... in a sleeping bag?

And does the 800 compress that much more than 600?



Edited by ctracyverizon on 03/07/2011 16:04:04 MST.

Bob Gross
(--B.G.--) - F

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: re on 03/07/2011 15:59:56 MST Print View

"maybe put in tennis balls"

I tried that for a couple of times. Later, I thought that I got better results from something a little larger and heavier, like a clean running shoe.


Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Compreddion,etc. on 03/07/2011 19:13:47 MST Print View

"And does 800 compress that much more than 600?"

For the same VOLUME, yes 800 compresses a lot more.
And therin lies the rub. For down jackets to be worn while hiking perhaps you don't want that much compression under pack straps and backs.

But for my 800 fill Eddie Bauer light jacket, yes, I want that compressability because I intend wearing it only in camp.

Karple T

Locale: Mid-Alantic
Down Fill - 600 vs. 700 vs. 800 on 03/07/2011 20:10:29 MST Print View

Compression is a big deal to me right now as I want everything to fit in my Jam.

Edited by ctracyverizon on 03/08/2011 10:20:56 MST.

Marco A. Sánchez

Locale: The fabulous Pyrenees
Re: Down Fill on 03/08/2011 05:51:54 MST Print View

Some additional tips:



Mina Loomis
(elmvine) - MLife

Locale: Central Texas
More tips on 03/09/2011 22:34:17 MST Print View

How the bag got "wet" can make a difference.

If it was rain or spilled water or a brief dunking in the creek, chances are the down itself isn't all that soaked, because down absorbs water only very reluctantly. (Try hand-washing a down bag at home in the bathtub. You pretty much have to walk on it a while in the tub water, to get it wet enough.) So if it was rain or a spill, it will dry out pretty quickly by airing in the sunshine and fluffing, or even by continuing to sleep in it--it will dry from your body heat. Takes a couple of nights.

If the insulation got soggy because of prolonged rainy cold conditions that create an overnight dew-point within the insulation with no opportunity effectively to dry or air the bag during the day for a number of days, then I guess you have a problem. This has been discussed from time to time on these forums, in greater technical detail than I can offer. *But* the conditions described are unusual, at least for us recreational users. Even in the Pacific Northwest. Where I lived and backpacked for several years. With a 1970 Gerry down bag that lasted me for 20 years and never had "wet down" problems.

Washing a bag at home. A front-loading washer will not tear up a bag like a top-loading agitator washer will. The companies that make special down-washing substances (Nikwax, et al.) will tell you that normal laundry detergent damages the down. I take their word for it. They even recommend that you run an empty, water-only, wash cycle before running your bag, to remove residue of previous detergents. As noted above, you can also wash the bag in the bathtub, but this is a tedious process, and you don't get a spin that way. No spin=significantly longer drying time.

Whatever you do, don't pick up the soaking wet bag without supporting its entire length, or the heavy wet down (supposedly--it's never happened to me) can rip the baffles.

You can dry the bag completely in a medium dryer with a clean shoe or something to break up the down. It takes a while, several cycles. Seems quicker in laundromat machines, but still takes a long time. When you first take the bag out, it's all warm and feels dry, but give it a few minutes and feel around, and there will probably still be damp clumps, requiring more drying time.

You can dry the bag to completely dry fluffiness without a dryer at all. Takes about a week in low-humidity weather. After washing, lay it out flat and supported, outdoors, perhaps lengthwise on a shaded porch railing, until it no longer drips and the shell is dry. Then bring it inside and lay it out in some low-use part of the house, draped over furniture or something. Once or twice a day, shake it, feel for down lumps and spread them out, and turn it over. This takes a looooong time, but if you are between trips it doesn't matter. And it beats spending an afternoon in the laundromat. Eventually you will have a lovely, fluffy, clean, dry down bag.