Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System
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Michael Skwarczek
(uberkatzen) - F

Locale: Sudamerica
Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System on 10/08/2007 18:04:27 MDT Print View

Haves:
ID PLQ Jacket
BMW Cocoon 60 Pant
FF 40degree Quilt (gear swap,on its way)
BMW Torsolite
1/4" closed cell foam
Cat tarp
Silnylon drop cloth

Haves Nots:
bivy
insulated balavclava

Conditions in my part of the Sierras have had little nighttime wind, 9000'-12000', temps to 30degrees, low humidity. All of which are due to change.

First off, can I get away with out the bivy until I get hold of one? I've got an MLD Superlight on order but I'm wavering on the shipping delays and another consideration, plus I'm researching MYOG bivy and quilt designs (the FF 40degree is temporary). I guess my main concern is with drafts.

Also, what about head insulation without the balaclava?

My system to date: lay down the drop cloth, torsolite and pack, mummy on top, tarp or tarp/tent or none depending on conditions. I'm not clear on the use of a torso length pad and pack combo with a quilt. Or: pad, pack, and 1/4" foam with quilt. Can you use the torso length/pack combo inside a bivy?

-michael

Edited by uberkatzen on 10/08/2007 18:11:19 MDT.

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System on 10/08/2007 18:42:29 MDT Print View

Given the system that you have listed I would say you can do without a bivy. I have found that with my quilt cinched up, that drafts have only been a minor annoyance when I move a lot. When I am still I haven't had draft issues, even with reasonably strong winds. I would suggest taking a couple of trips without a bivy, and only add a bivy if you need it.

As far as a hat goes... you just want something warm and that protections your neck. In the past I have used a combination of a warmish hat (OR Fall Line, wool watchcap with thermolite, golite snow cap, etc) and a neck gaitor (or polarbuff). I only put on my down balaclava when it's below 30F. My down balaclava is from downworks. I think it cost $23 and weights 2.4oz.

I have used a torso pad + pad in a bivy... it worked fine. I don't use that system anymore because I switched back to a more comfortable pad and found I didn't need the bivy.

Jason Shaffer
(PA_Jay) - F

Locale: on the move....
advice starting quilt sleep system on 10/08/2007 18:47:25 MDT Print View

The one item on your list I have no experience with is the FF Quilt, but... your kit sounds reasonable to me for temps down to freezing, without a bivy. (Ignoring the dozen or more variables, of course!) Until you've seen for yourself, I'd definitely suggest an extra item of head insulation. A fleece balaclava would give you a better margin for comfortable experimentation. Draft issues with a bivy-less quilt setup will depend on how much you toss and turn, how the quilt girth fits you, and how exposed your campsites will be.

Edited by PA_Jay on 10/08/2007 18:54:35 MDT.

Jason Shaffer
(PA_Jay) - F

Locale: on the move....
quilt advice on 10/08/2007 18:49:29 MDT Print View

Edited by PA_Jay on 10/08/2007 18:50:41 MDT.

Jason Shaffer
(PA_Jay) - F

Locale: on the move....
Re: advice starting quilt sleep system on 10/08/2007 18:51:38 MDT Print View

sorry, squirrelly website issues... admin please delete.

Edited by PA_Jay on 10/08/2007 18:52:43 MDT.

Jason Shaffer
(PA_Jay) - F

Locale: on the move....
Re: quilt advice on 10/08/2007 18:53:14 MDT Print View

Doug Johnson
(djohnson) - MLife

Locale: Washington State
Re: Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System on 10/09/2007 00:08:58 MDT Print View

Hey Michael,

Short answer- spend some money. :-)

Long answer:
I've found three key components to a quilt/tarpt system in cold temps: warm headgear, a bivy, and thoughtful ground insulation.

Headgear- After several years with quilts, I go heavy on this insulation. I personally use a Cocoon Hoody and a Cocoon balaclava in those temps. I'd go for a warm insulated balaclava and a thing fleece balaclava underneath. Might be conservative, but I've found this to be key in a quilt system.

The bivy is key. I move around when I sleep which gives drafts and if winds pick up, you lose even more heat. The bivy is a key part of staying warm and I almost always use one under about 50 deg. (more above treeline). However, if you have a larger tarp that pitches to the ground, pick a spot carefully, and don't thrash when you sleep like me, you'll probably be fine.

At 30 deg., I think a torsolite alone will be cold. I'd go for your long Thinlight, the pack, and a Torsolite at those temps.

I spent some pretty uncomfortable nights in the beginning when learning to push a light quilt to cooler temps. I think you may want to be wiser than I was and go warmer. You can always ditch items on your next trip.

One caveat- I tend to be a bit of a cold sleeper.

Have a great trip!

Doug

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System on 10/09/2007 03:58:47 MDT Print View

Doug wrote:

>Headgear- After several years with quilts, I go heavy on this insulation. I personally use a Cocoon Hoody and a Cocoon balaclava in those temps. I'd go for a warm insulated balaclava and a thing fleece balaclava underneath. Might be conservative, but I've found this to be key in a quilt system.

Yeah, I'd go along with that. Your head may not FEEL cold, but it will be stripping heat from the rest of your body. keep it warm!

todd harper
(funnymoney) - MLife

Locale: Sunshine State
Re: Re: Re: Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System on 10/09/2007 06:21:38 MDT Print View

I'm not trying to simply repeat what Roger said!

However his point about not FEELING cold is very true for me. Even in cold temps my head may not be uncomfortable, but my torso or shoulders may feel the cold if I don't cover my head. Very interesting how that works!

Michael Skwarczek
(uberkatzen) - F

Locale: Sudamerica
RE: Advice Starting Quilt Sleep System on 10/09/2007 11:40:04 MDT Print View

Thanks everyone. I'm sold on the head insulation needs. And, Doug, I studied your gear list in prep and I've no doubt your solid advice was direct from the school of hard knocks.

Does anyone know of a synth fill balaclava besides the BMW Cocoon? I'll admit, it's because the Pro 90 is RED!

I've had a hard time committing to the bivy when I feel like it has to be the simplest MYOG project around. My instinct tells me to make a silnylon/Pertex 360 bivy, and consider the BMW Vapr for SUL or a custom MLD for eVent options (even just for a eVent footbox). BUT, my instincts aren't founded in experience or bivy use outside my bomb-proof pre-eVent ID Crysallis for snow, so wtf do I know.... OK, seeing as I already committed the funds on a pre-ordered MLD Superlight, I'll cancel that and pickup the Nano in the Gear Swap for a few dollars more. MYOG really just keeps my hands busy, it's frankly more expensive in the early stages.

Thanks all! Can't wait to get out. I have a light n' fast scouting mission planned for a weekender in Seq Nat. I'm posting that in Trip Planning to see if I can enlist a partner.

Joshua Mitchell
(jdmitch) - F

Locale: Kansas
Re: Hooded Synth Fill on 10/09/2007 12:18:55 MDT Print View

"Does anyone know of a synth fill balaclava besides the BMW Cocoon? I'll admit, it's because the Pro 90 is RED!"
NM - I got backlava and pull-over confused... I don't know if anyone makes just a synth-fill backlava...

Edited by jdmitch on 10/09/2007 12:19:44 MDT.

Michael Skwarczek
(uberkatzen) - F

Locale: Sudamerica
Synth fill Balaclava on 10/09/2007 13:23:09 MDT Print View

The BMW Cocoon Pro 90 and 60 Balaclavas with Polarguard Delta are the only ones? I'm not finding anything other than down fill like the Down Works, so this may well be the case... jeez, red. Why red? Heh.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Synth fill Balaclava on 10/09/2007 19:46:17 MDT Print View

> The BMW Cocoon Pro 90 and 60 Balaclavas with Polarguard Delta are the only ones? jeez, red. Why red? Heh.

Because red is a nice colour inside a tarp/tent! It LOOKS warm.

Jeremy Cleaveland
(jeremy11) - F

Locale: Exploring San Juan talus
Primaloft hood on 10/09/2007 20:25:43 MDT Print View

primaloft hood

I don't think synthetic hoods are available commercially. Ray Jardine has a kit for a small hood. This is a hood I made from Minima Vest leftovers. It is 2 layers of 3 oz Primaloft, for 1.2 inches of loft. It weighs about 3 oz. I barely use the zipper, and recently added a drawcord for under the chin so it stays on without having to zip the zipper. It was fun to make it with only a single layer hood pattern. It is very helpful on cold nights with a quilt.


Edit: Bozeman Mountain Works makes a Polarguard Delta Balaclava

Edited by jeremy11 on 10/09/2007 21:03:50 MDT.

Michael Skwarczek
(uberkatzen) - F

Locale: Sudamerica
MYOG synth balaclava on 10/09/2007 22:46:36 MDT Print View

That looks great! Thanks for the tip on the Ray Jardine kit.

Jan Rezac
(zkoumal) - MLife

Locale: Prague, CZ
Balacalva pattern on 10/10/2007 14:02:35 MDT Print View

I made myself a balacalva this summer to complement my quilt. It's made from silk/prequilted primaloft/momentum, going from inside. It weights 45 g.

I can send you printable pattern, I digitalized it recently because I want to make another one with more insulation, what will require scaling the pattern up. Post your e-mail and I'll send it. (No instructions how to sew it yet, just the bare pattern.)

Michael Skwarczek
(uberkatzen) - F

Locale: Sudamerica
balaclava pattern on 10/10/2007 16:46:42 MDT Print View

You are awesome!

d3pl3t3d AT yahoo DOT com

I'm just about to embark on a series of MYOG sewing projects: a quilt and a bivy. Getting my feat wet with the balaclava is perfect. Would you mind divulging your source for materials as well?

thanks so much,
-Michael

Adam Rothermich
(aroth87) - F

Locale: Missouri Ozarks
Re: Balacalva pattern on 10/10/2007 17:39:16 MDT Print View

Jan,
If you wouldn't mind sending me a copy of the pattern as well I would appreciate it. I have some leftovers from my Kinsman pullover that I think would be put to good use as a balaclava.

Thanks,
Adam

aroth87 at hotmail dot com

Edited by aroth87 on 10/10/2007 17:40:07 MDT.

Joe Kuster
(slacklinejoe) - MLife

Locale: Flatirons
Balaclava Pattern on 10/10/2007 19:34:54 MDT Print View

I'm interested in the pattern as well. I've already got plenty of left over insulation from my other projects.
joe@slacklineexpress.com

Nia Schmald
(nschmald) - MLife
Re: Balaclava Pattern on 10/11/2007 06:09:25 MDT Print View

Sorry to pile on, but I's love it to. nschmald1 AT yahoo DOT com. Thank you.

Edited by nschmald on 10/11/2007 06:11:36 MDT.