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Just finished a Bivy
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James Reilly
(zippymorocco) - M

Locale: Montana
Just finished a Bivy on 12/12/2013 17:34:36 MST Print View

I finished my Bivy today and am extremely happy with the outcome. I will use it for my PCT thru-hike this year along with a 9'X7'X5' cat cut cuben tarp that I will be making this week. I used a 1 ounce cuben floor for a past through hike and really liked the way it performed so I decided to take the weight penalty and go with it again. Special thanks to Jamie Shortt and Andy Duncan for suggestions and ideas.

1.0 oz Cuben floor- 2 yards
.75 oz pertex- 2 yards
.7 oz noseeum netting 2 yards
thread from DIY
Approximate cost= $100.00 (price could be $65.00-$70.00 if you went with a Impetus floor)

Weight= 5.1 ounces






Edited by zippymorocco on 12/12/2013 17:37:25 MST.

Jamie Shortt
(jshortt) - MLife

Locale: North Carolina
Re: Just finished a Bivy on 12/12/2013 20:26:30 MST Print View

James, The bivy looks great. Job well done. I really like how the side zip turned out. I have yet to build a bivy that zips down the side. But thinking I need to add the extra .5 oz to make a side zip.

So here is a question, what functionilty is lost or made much more difficult by having a chest zip only? why do you really want a side zip?

I have a specific answer, I am curious if other people would answer that same way.


James DeGraaf
(jdegraaf) - MLife

Locale: Bay Area
Re: Re: Just finished a Bivy on 12/12/2013 23:26:37 MST Print View

Not that the question was directed at me, but, my name is James so maybe I have some insight ;)

I did not make my bivy but rather bought it and went with the side-zip option. It's an MLD superlight for reference. The side zip comes down to about the waist or mid-thigh on me and there is one monumental advantage for me; no shimmying to get into and out of my bag and bivy. I can sit on my pad and swivel on my bottom, slide my legs into the bag/bivy, lie (lay, I don't know) down and zip up and be done. That is why I really went with a side-zip.


P.S. we'll see if the next response is from a James or Jamie, I'd accept Jim as well.

[edited: forgot to say that I'm very impressed with your bivy, both weight and price. way to go!]

Edited by jdegraaf on 12/12/2013 23:28:13 MST.

James Reilly
(zippymorocco) - M

Locale: Montana
RE: the benefits to side zip. on 12/13/2013 12:24:45 MST Print View

Thank you both for the compliments. I really like the way the zip came out too. It was hard deciding in what order to sew things but I think there was more than one way that would have worked.

As to Jamie's Question:

I decided to go with the side zip for multiple reasons. In order of importance to me the list is as follows.
1. I use a torso length pad and plan to use my backpack and other gear at my feet. I think that the side zip will help with evening set up.
2. The ability to easily sit up
3. Less wiggling to get in and out
4. The little curve looks good :)

My sleeping bag requires some wiggle to get into as well so I probably could have made it work if that was my only concern.

I sure am looking forward to taking it for a spin.

James #2

Edited by zippymorocco on 12/13/2013 12:25:37 MST.

Steve Meier
(smeier) - MLife

Locale: Midwest
Ventilation on 12/13/2013 12:53:11 MST Print View

I have a side zip bivy and like James #2 said, it is nice to just sit on the pad and swivel into your bag without having to shimmy. I really like it for the ventilation as well. Once the sun goes down and the mosquitoes are gone, if I am overheating it sure is nice to be able to unzip a bit and since I use a quilt, easily vent.