Have been using a synthetic bag, but really want a down bag without the cost/limitations of the big brand names.
Purchased the bulk down for the project last year (2 lb. of 700FP from Downlite), but have been out of the country since then so haven't had time to finish. I will be able to spend a month or two home in the States around the holidays, so would like to finish my bag during that time if possible.
The difficulty I am having is in locating some materials. Can anyone help me find some options for purchasing the following in various colors:
- Dryloft (Outer Shell) - High Quality Nylon Taffeta (Liner)
Then I was curious about another couple matters:
- Which baffle design is theoretically more effective/durable, offset sew-through baffles or the "walls" of netting described in the "Make Your Own Sleeping Bag" article?
- What are some more effective and/or durable alternatives to noseeum netting for separating the down baffles?
I am more interested in durability than weight (within reason) as this bag needs to be able to survive years of daily use in the wilderness (used with hammock), so any recommenations in that regard are welcome.
I have made several down sleeping bags and quilts. My preference is for the sewn in individual mesh baffles: separate baffles, not the sewing of a continuous mesh panel to alternating sides. The latter adds unnecessary weight for no particular advantage. As for the material, I have always used ripstop nylon and no-see-um mesh. You have to look at the outside material to be sure it will be reasonably down proof; having one side calendered helps a lot. Most recently, I have been using the 1.1 oz per square yard ripstop. I don't know anything about Dryloft so can't help you there but the taffeta sounds heavy. In my experience, sleeping bag durability is not particularly related to the fabric; it is much more a function of the care the bag receives. Frankly, I don't know why you would need something more durable than no-see-um mesh for the baffles; I have never had, nor heard of, baffle failure when using this material. Usually failures originate in the sewing, not the fabric. You might try Quest Outfitters for the material you mentioned.
Loc: Central Texas
I second everything Pika says. Check Thruhiker.com for shell and baffle material. I've used my quilts as long as 9 months continuously in the field with 0.9 oz. shells and noseeum baffles. No failure. Ever. You will be dissatisfied with sewn-through construction. Baffles are really easy to do. Just chalk line where you want them, fold the shell, stitch a quarter inch seam and stitch the baffle to it. The stitching will be protected... inside the shell. Straight up & down baffles are perfect. Down clings to the net to block convection drafts. Avoid trick gimmicks like slant baffles and V baffles. They don't do more than add weight and construction hassles.