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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 14:03:28 MST Print View

The ultralightweight backpacker community has already done a good job of repurposing aluminum beverage cans and a few things like that.

I had a weird idea about an alternative to down insulation. Has anybody ever tried using dryer lint? It doesn't cost anything. It is very lightweight. Currently people are using more and more synthetic clothing, so there is not so much cotton lint showing up there.

The other material is #2 plastic, commonly found in one-gallon jugs for auto windshield washer solution. The main surface of that one-gallon jug is useful. I need a piece that is about 50% taller. Is there any normal product sold in a plastic jug that size? There are other plastics used for 5-gallon jugs, but they tend to be thicker and heavier.

--B.G.--

Marko Botsaris
(millonas) - F - MLife

Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA
Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 15:09:00 MST Print View

To make things even more interesting, some of my dryer lint has down components from my parrots! I can see it now:

FS: genuine 50/50 Grey Parrot Down/Capilene hybrid insulation $500/oz.

Edited by millonas on 01/26/2014 15:10:41 MST.

Billy Ray
(rosyfinch) - M

Locale: the mountains
Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 15:42:41 MST Print View

I thought of using the undercoat from my husky when he would shed every spring.

But if it got wet it would smell like wet dog.
On the other hand, when I was out with my husk in wet conditions I always came back smelling like wet dog anyway. :)

Billy

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 15:53:00 MST Print View

"FS: genuine 50/50 Grey Parrot Down/Capilene hybrid insulation $500/oz."

Mark, can you certify that it is genuine African Gray Parrot Down?

Nevermind.

--B.G.--

Mike Young
(klackamas) - F - MLife

Locale: ingreentrees@yahoo.com
Parrot down on 01/26/2014 19:27:57 MST Print View

"some of my dryer lint has down components from my parrots"

I can't imagine the parrots like a trip through the dryer. keep a side eye out for p.e.t.a. they are everywhere!

William F
(wkf) - F

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 22:24:44 MST Print View

I too have looked at my long hair cat while thinking that her fur would make excellent down material. Has anyone tried? Does a wet cat smell like a wet dog? The hair is incredibly down like and not greasy at all.

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 22:32:14 MST Print View

William, I think the cat fur would be a problem unless you want to lick your insulated garments daily.

--B.G.--

Piper S.
(sbhikes) - F

Locale: Santa Barbara (Name: Diane)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 22:38:39 MST Print View

We have a jar of cockatoo down that we've been collecting. I imagine that tropical bird down probably isn't very warm as far as down goes.

This weekend I wore some fairly minimalist running shoes on a trail brushing project. I stepped on a branch and a thorn went straight through the shoe and into my foot. I thought after that experience that some insoles made of milk jug plastic or perhaps cardboard milk carton cardboard might have prevented it. It was pretty painful even a couple days later.

William F
(wkf) - F

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 22:40:06 MST Print View

Bob, that's why you bring the cat along with you too, just like people bringing their dogs right? It can't be too different…

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/26/2014 22:51:50 MST Print View

Piper, think titanium foil.

I hope you got a tetanus shot.

--B.G.--

just Justin Whitson
(ArcturusBear)
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/27/2014 00:07:10 MST Print View

"I too have looked at my long hair cat while thinking that her fur would make excellent down material. Has anyone tried? Does a wet cat smell like a wet dog? The hair is incredibly down like and not greasy at all."

Haven't done anything with cat hair, but did with Angora rabbit fur. I sprayed it with a fluorocarbon DWR treatment, mixed it with some 550 duck down, and then put it on top of a layer of 2.5 oz Apex. No baffles, i wanted to see how it would tend to stay or shift without baffles. Haven't test it out yet because it was heavier than i wanted it to be. The lady who sold me a "1 lb" of it, gave me more than that and i hadn't bothered to check the weight before hand.

Anyways, quality Angora rabbit fur is very warm stuff. It's both rather fine/thin fibers on average, many of which also are rather hollow.

That's a great combination for trapping air. But, i don't think it would hold up to compression as well as down would, and it might matt or felt some (which is why i sprayed it with the DWR, hoping it might make it more slippery and less prone to same).

Unfortunately, i could not find any CLO type tests on Angora Rabbit fur, since a lot of people saying general things like, "it's 7" or "8" times warmer than wool, which doesn't really mean a whole lot.

It would be more ideal for smaller insulated garments, like mitts, maybe vests, etc. things that don't have to be compressed too much to put in ones pack.

William Safley
(wsafley) - MLife

Locale: Eastern NC
Re: Alternative materials on 01/27/2014 07:02:12 MST Print View

I was thinking the same thing recently after finishing my down quilt. The 900 fp down I had reminded me of dryer lint as it came out of the bag (though lint obviously wouldn't have the nearly the same loft!). I have some of a tyvek roll left over, and I was thinking of hacking up a quilt from it with lint as the insulation. If it worked, I was considering the possibilities of making quilts like this for groups of scouts, the homeless, etc.

William F
(wkf) - F

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/27/2014 15:53:46 MST Print View

Could fiberglass insulation be used in clothing? I know working with the stuff is a PITA but if it were safely contained so you don't come into contact with it. I'm thinking the fibers might be able to pierce through most fabrics and leak though. I didn't bother searching the forums if this has already been brought up.

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

Locale: Silicon Valley
Re: Alternative materials on 01/27/2014 16:19:18 MST Print View

I'm still open for suggestions on the plastic.

--B.G.--

David Olsen
(bivysack.com) - F

Locale: Channeled Scablands
one quart oil bottles on 01/27/2014 17:32:55 MST Print View

I used the plastic from oil bottles to line a crampon pouch. You can sew on the plastic easily to make larger sheets or to attach it to fabric.

Carl Umland
(chumland) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Crest Trail, mostly
Alternative materials on 01/27/2014 17:53:21 MST Print View

For lightweight #3 plastic what about "Flexible Chopping Mats". I have one that's about twice the thickness of a HDPE milk bottle.

Delmar O'Donnell
(Bolster)

Locale: Between Jacinto & Gorgonio
Insulation on 01/28/2014 20:31:26 MST Print View

On a recent trip through Home Depot I noticed a half dozen interesting looking insulation products. A few I hefted, and they seemed pretty light. But I didn't take it any further than that, as the wife wanted to get moving. Look at the flooring materials; lots of interesting products. One was tiny foam balls adhered to a very thin plastic.

Derek M.
(dmusashe) - M

Locale: Pacific Northwest
Re: Alternative materials on 01/29/2014 01:29:15 MST Print View

Bob,
Have you ever tried actually weighing dryer lint? I haven't done it myself, but I suspect you might be very disappointed to find out just how much volume 1 ounce of dryer lint occupies.

My guess is that it wouldn't even hold a candle to 550 fill power duck down, let alone high quality goose down. It would also be a mess if it ever got wet.

On the other hand, it makes a great firestarter!

Edited by dmusashe on 01/29/2014 01:29:57 MST.

Daryl Daryl
(lyrad1) - MLife

Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Re: Alternative materials on 01/29/2014 08:38:44 MST Print View

A woman I used to hike with used mountain goat fur to make stocking caps. She would collect it from bushes along the trail in the Olympic Mountains of Washington state.

Styrofoam appeals to me but I've never done anything with it. I'm amazed how a thin layer of it can protect my hands from hot coffee.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Alternative materials on 01/29/2014 08:54:46 MST Print View

I've played with styrofoam a little, but it's very heavy compared to down or synthetic.

1.3 oz for 15.5" x 15.5" x 0.5" piece. Assume 4 clo/inch - a little better than synthetic or down because it has closed cells so no internal convection. = 0.3 clo/oz/yd2

Synthetic is 0.9 clo/oz/yd2 - 3 times better

Down is better than synthetic, maybe 1.6 clo/oz/yd2