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-   -   Sleeping-bag survey, please contribute (http://www.horizonsunlimited.com/hubb/camping-equipment-and-all-clothing/sleeping-bag-survey-please-contribute-10742)

Mr. Ron 25 Apr 2005 06:38

Sleeping-bag survey, please contribute
Hello. I'm ready to up-grade my sleeping bag and i thought i would start this thread. What bag do you fellow travellers prefer? Down or synthetic fill? Any problems or sugestions? What do you use and where?

Grant Johnson 25 Apr 2005 14:43

Down. Down has two negatives - cost and it doesn't insulate when wet. On a bike, keeping it dry isn't a real problem, and cost versus it's virtues - very warm for the weight, a wide temperature comfort range, extremely compact and forgiving of being crushed, and the down itself never wears out, whereas synthetics most definitely die after a couple of years at best, make it an easy choice.

Grant Johnson

Seek, and ye shall find.


One world, Two wheels.

beddhist 25 Apr 2005 17:02

We bought a couple of synthetic a few years back and have regretted it ever since: half the price and twice the size of comparable down.

They have lasted several years of sometimes heavy, but not constant use (we don't live on our bikes - yet).

We are now looking to buy down bags.

Salut from Southern France, the bikers' paradise,


vincent danna 26 Apr 2005 01:01

VALLANDRE sleeping bags for ever :-)


excellent stuff, excellent service, from this company in the south west of france, breeding their own goose ducks etc ..., equipping many expeditions etc ...

ekaphoto 27 Apr 2005 01:38

I prefer synthetic because if it gets wet it still works. Also drys easier and I can wash it in a washing machine if I want. I put up with the extra bulk and slight weight. Also down tends to set off my allergies.


Frank Warner 27 Apr 2005 07:10

I've got both.
The synthtic pack down smaller, cheaper and a little heavier. It looks to me as though two synthtics of say 5 degrees C rating would be better than one down of -5C rating - about the same size and costs with the advantage of different configurations for different weather conditions.

liketoride2 27 Apr 2005 22:48

There are differences in the several types of synthetic materials used in sleeping bags. Primaloft is supposedly the closest to down in characteristics and is preferred by some. I have a Big Agnes Primaloft bag but have only slept in it once so all I can say is that it seems quite warm for it's weight.

I do like the way the Big Agnes bags are made so that a pad (of correct size) slips into the bottom of the bag. This prevents the pad from sliding out from under the bag.


CountPacMan 27 Apr 2005 23:20

Down. Grant is the one that conviced me to make the switch, and I don't regret it. My bag doesn't get wet becasue its in a pannier or in my tent no matter the weather, its not like a backpacking expedition. I've only washed it once so far, but yea, it takes AGES to dry...

Improvement makes strait roads, but the crooked roads without Improvement, are roads of Genius - William Blake

Mr. Ron 28 Apr 2005 09:40

Awesome guys! Keep them coming! My bag, an MEC has lasted me 8or9 years now, but is quickly wearing out. How long has your bag lasted?...

nobby 28 Apr 2005 19:14

hi ron
I have had a mountain Equipment snowline down bag since 1996 lots of trip here, there and every where.I have a cotton inner for the hot stuff and just have the bag unzipped over me if I get cold and a mountain Equipment bivi bag if I sleep in exteme cold or wet
top stuff

cheers chris

backofbeyond 29 Apr 2005 03:11

Thats what I've been doing as well. A Rab down bag that can be opened out, and a cotton liner for warmer nights. Never had a problem with the down getting wet (it soaks up a lot of water before you notice it). Down does deteriorate over the years though if its jammed into small bags so I'd suggest you start off with what seems an overspecced bag. That way it'll still be usable for years.

Wolfy 29 Apr 2005 08:54

Just remember to try it on. I'm 6'3" and assumed I would fit in my sleeping bag. Actually I do but it fits like a cocoon and I'm a restless sleeper! Don't compromise on a good nights sleep unless you have sufficient vino to sedate you.

jrwmojo 29 Apr 2005 09:55

i've used down and synthetic, currently have a down bag good to freezing, but my next bag will be a synthetic quilt. why? easy to make, cheap, same insulation if same loft. make your own and adjust to your size and conditions. synthetic doesn't pack as well and is a little bit heavier, but synthetic quilt packs better and lighter than a down bag. requires $65, 12 hours of your time, and a sewing machine.

Seth S 22 May 2005 11:20

I adamantly prefer Goose down bags to synthetic. Down is light weight, packs small, lasts a long time, and realy isnt that much more expensive then synthetic. The argument for synthetic is that it is less expensive and will still insulate when its wet. Well like I said the price difference is negligable unless we are talking extreme cold weather bags or custom. The insulate when wet....well yeah ok, but who wants to sleep in a wet bag....this is realy a survival thing I guess. I'd rather bundle up in my warm clothes and sleep in a tarp then a wet bag of any type. Down is actualy very resistant to gettin wet. Even if you push a down bag into a bath tub full of water it doesnt immediately take on water. My summer 15 degree down bag is 9 years old and now I am looking to replace it as it isnt as warm as it used to be. $200 for 9 years of use is pretty good. For river and ocean kayaking trips I put the down bag in a water tight storage bag. ok, I think you get my point...I vote for down.

Seth S

Bill Holland 22 May 2005 18:04

I have only travelled to warmer countries, and have been happy with a Rab Quantum, down filled, weighs 520 grams including stuff sack.
My logic being, should I need something warmer, I will buy another lightweight down bag, and use one inside the other, hopefully this should cover all temperature ranges I may come accross.

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