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Insultex Thermal Insulation?
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John Donewar
(Newton) - MLife

Locale: Southeastern Louisiana
Insultex Thermal Insulation? on 02/28/2012 10:42:01 MST Print View

Does anyone have any first hand experience with this product?

Insultex micro-perforated closed-cell foam insulation

I'd be interested in knowing down to what temperature rating a single layer of this insulation would be good for.

I'm going to contact diygearsupply and ask about its weight per yard.

Party On,


Tim Marshall
(MarshLaw303) - MLife

Locale: Minnesota
Re: Insultex Thermal Insulation? on 02/28/2012 11:00:32 MST Print View

I have used it and do use it as a summer under quilt with 2 or 3 layers, i forget which. I treat it as VB and think you'll have best results if you treat it as such too. For me this means i won't make a nylon covered version of it as the nylon will just get wet. Mine is ix on the inside and cuben on the outside. If i made a top quilt it would be all cuben but i wouldn't expect 3 layers to get you much bellow 40* if at all. It is all subjective but i like how small it packs compared to APEX and how little i have to worry about it compared to down.


John Donewar
(Newton) - MLife

Locale: Southeastern Louisiana
Re: Re: Insultex Thermal Insulation? on 02/28/2012 11:18:44 MST Print View

Hi Tim,

"I treat it as VB and think you'll have best results if you treat it as such too. For me this means I won't make a nylon covered version of it as the nylon will just get wet".

I was thinking about using it in a nylon covered top quilt.;-)

DIY mentioned covering it with nylon to increase durablity.;-?

Covering it with cuben and using three layers to get down to 40* is a deal breaker for me. I was exploring the possibilty of a super compressable lightweight top quilt for winter use.

Cost wise I'd probably be better off with 5.0 Apex in a nylon shell. The extra compressability would have been nice but I guess there are no free lunches.LOL

Thanks for the info.

Party on,


Daryl and Daryl
(lyrad1) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Re: Insultex Thermal Insulation? on 02/28/2012 11:36:19 MST Print View


I tried it and didn't think much of it. Here's last year's thread on it.



Troy Ammons
(tammons) - F - MLife
Insultex Thermal Insulation? on 02/28/2012 11:49:38 MST Print View

I just finished a modular quilt setup which is basically a M50 shell you can tie in different layers of insulation.

Since I had some IX laying around, I made a liner out of a single layer.
Although some people have luck with it as a top quilt, it does not breath well enough IMO unless you never sweat.

IX weighs about 1.4oz per SY, so if you build a two layer quilt it weighs 2.8oz per SY and provides about the same insulation as 2.5 Apex just guessing.

IX is not cheap either.

For me it made sense as a liner because you do not have to wrap it in a protective shell like you would with climashield.

I tied it inside the M50 shell as-is and way too clammy.

What I ended up doing was to split some 2.5 oz climashield (+-1.25oz) and made a M50 1.25oz climashield round part of the foot box. A 1.25 oz climashield footbox end.

About 4" up from the round foot box end, on top I added a 8" x 14" 1.25 oz climashield panel covered in 5mm silk.

From there up to 6" from the neck, I cut a 1.5" slot and covered that with 5mm silk.

The bottom of the footbox is open down to the round end

Also Scalloped the edges.

The liner weighs 4oz and the shell 5 oz and rolls up about as big as a nalgene bottle.

So far so good but this is only a summer quilt or will be used as a booster on the inside face of the assembly combined with climashield liners.

Just guessing I would say it should be good to 55-60dF.

John Donewar
(Newton) - MLife

Locale: Southeastern Louisiana
Re: Insultex Thermal Insulation? on 02/28/2012 12:36:59 MST Print View

FWIW here is the info that I received from DIY.

"... I have found that each layer gives you about an additional 10-13degF of protection. So, if you're comfortable in what you've got on at say, 60deg, a layer of Insultex should get you to 47-50deg. That's for most people, and with the insulation being used properly (not compressed in any way, with a good seal).

The weight is about 1.3oz per square yard.

Also, bear in mind that this insulation is effectively a vapor barrier, so VP considerations need to be taken into account in whatever insulation project you intend to design"...

So it seems that 3 layers should be good down to 35* - 40* but as Tim said it needs to be treated as a vapor barrier.

Party On,


Scott Littlefield
(sclittlefield) - F

Locale: Northern Woods of Maine
DIY Gear Supply on 02/28/2012 13:35:06 MST Print View

Hey guys, I own/run DIY Gear Supply.

Everything in this thread looks to be about exactly right on the money re: Insultex. Tim is the VB expert, listen very closely to anything he says in regards to Vapor Barriers and quilts.

Honestly, though I do sell a lot of Insultex, I do not recommend it for top quilt use. And I don't recommend it for most average DIY'ers too. Unless you really know your stuff around vapor barriers and how to use them properly, you're not going to enjoy it, just going to feel clammy. Climashield / Primaloft (and even better, Goose Down) is by far the better way to go with top quilts for 95% of us out on the trail.

I would, however, recommend it for underquilts (in hammock use), where moisture regulation is not such an issue.

And even better, where I feel it shines, is in conjunction with a synthetic loft insulation like Climashield. Insultex does a great job of keeping the heat in the loft of normal insulation materials - all those micro-cells significantly slowing down heat transfer, and and the closed-cell nature of it eliminating heat robbed from wind.

But again - keep the vapor barrier qualities in mind on any project design.

Edited by sclittlefield on 02/28/2012 13:35:37 MST.

seth mcalister
(sethmcalister) - F

Locale: New Hampshire
IX TQ on 02/28/2012 14:39:16 MST Print View


I wish I had known before you shipped it to me yesterday! I had read a lot of threads over at HF with guys that were successful with the IX TQ. I'm only looking to go about 50* through since I have a WM Caribou.

I had cut up an old sleeping bag and was going to use the inside nylon as the bottom and just keep the IX open. Do you really thing that it will be that clammy with 2 layers?

Scott Littlefield
(sclittlefield) - F

Locale: Northern Woods of Maine
venting IX on 02/28/2012 14:46:48 MST Print View

Just keep the footbox ventable and you should be just fine in those temps. The key to VB insulations is regulating your temperature. You want to be warm, but not hot & sweaty, so design your gear such that it can be vented as required. A drawcord footbox is a good solution.

I have a 2-layer Insultex top quilt designed this way that works fine for me - but I can get a tiny bit of moisture in the foot area if I don't vent properly based on the temperature outside. I don't feel clammy in mine, but I'm not a heavy sweater at night, some are. The good news is that vapor barriers actually, when used properly, work better than breathable lofted insulations in that they will never lose their insulative value from moisture within the insulation.