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  1. #21
    Registered User Venchka's Avatar
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    Katabatic Gear in Colorado?
    https://katabaticgear.com/shop/palisade-sleeping-bag/
    Whatever you buy, don’t waste your money on the mythical 900-950 fill power down. In the backpacking real world 850-900-950 fill power down doesn’t exist.
    The new revised down testing process requires that the down be “conditioned” in a laboratory for a week before being measured.
    How do you reckon you can do that out in the woods?
    750 down in the 1990s is still the best.
    Wayne

  2. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by Venchka View Post
    Katabatic Gear in Colorado?
    https://katabaticgear.com/shop/palisade-sleeping-bag/
    Whatever you buy, don’t waste your money on the mythical 900-950 fill power down. In the backpacking real world 850-900-950 fill power down doesn’t exist.
    The new revised down testing process requires that the down be “conditioned” in a laboratory for a week before being measured.
    How do you reckon you can do that out in the woods?
    750 down in the 1990s is still the best.
    Wayne
    There's alot of truth to this. The wonderful highly lofted bone dry down bag or quilt you have at home before the trip will never or rarely be as dry and as lofted during a trip. You can tell this easily by the effort required to stuff your down bag/quilt into its stuff sack at home versus out on a trip---it's easier on a trip when the down is not bone dry.

    This loss of loft is due to air humidity and moisture and in-tent condensation---and because of this loss of down efficiency I always recommend going over-kill on down bag ratings. So if you're gonna be camping at 20F get something rated about 5F. 0F camping requires -15F etc.

    On a long winter trip using down items like a parka or down pants or down bag/quilt---it's a necessary chore to thoroughly shake the item 30 or 40 times to help the down loft and to get it arranged properly in the shell---and do this after pulling it out of its stuff sack.

    Another vital component to down use is to hang out the item in the morning to air dry and "sublimate" any moisture. I did it alot on my last trip---see pic---

    Trip 194 (211)-XL.jpg

  3. #23

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    Switching to a 30F is fine if that matches the temperatures you camp in better. But if you think you'll see high teens or low 20's like I do at various times of the year, you won't be happy. I'm not a big fan of one size fits all, because it seldom fits well.

    I switched to quilts back in 2008. I've ended up with a Enlightened Equipment 20F (18oz) quilt with a sewn footbox and a Hammock Gear 40F (14oz) quilt with a snap footbox as this covers the temperature range better than using just one quilt over the 3 season backpacking I do. Using just one quilt means I'm either too hot or too cold for part of the year. The difference in weight between them is <5 oz so it doesn't save me much taking the lighter one so I just take the one that fits the expected temperatures better. The sewn footbox works better in colder weather as you don't get a draft at your feet, but the snap footbox which allows the quilt to be opened up like a blanket works better in warmer weather as you can vent heat better.

    I bought the 950 fill version of my 20F quilt and my body's experience in the low 20's says it's every bit as warm at 20F as my previous 800 fill 20F bag was for a slight reduction in weight. The only question is whether or not the loft will hold up as long over time. While I have used it for a couple of weeks worth of backpacking, I haven't thru-hiked with it over several months and that's where the proof would come out.
    Last edited by Miner; 12-27-2018 at 16:20.

  4. #24
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by blue indian View Post
    Ive been using a quilt for at least 5 years now. I dont ever see myself going back to a "sleeping bag".

    My current quilt is a 3-season 20*. I cant recall a time when I ever felt cold; at least not to the point where I couldnt sleep.

    Ive decided I want to update my quilt and Im considering moving from the 20* to a 30* to save weight and space in my pack.

    It would save me around 10 oz and moving from an 800 fill to a 900 fill would save me space too.

    I am indeed mostly a 3 season backpacker; rarely seeing anything below 20* if that.

    Has anyone made a similar transition and regretted it? The quilt I am looking at has awesome reviews in that folks say theyve been able to take it past 30* easy and I plan on getting 1oz overstuff.

    Any feedback on experience making a similar transition would be apprecaited! Thanks folks
    To try to get this back on track:

    On the down... There is not enough advantage in my opinion at this point to even entertain anything beyond 850 fills unless you're talking zero and below bags.
    There just isn't enough savings by any metric to justify the costs (including the cost of using 900+ fills in the real world).

    So try to keep it apples to apples and compare 850 ish as a solid upper limit. Once that is locked in... you can run your own cost/benefit/weight analysis.



    Sounds like you're mainly looking at upgrading and you're already 'sold' on another quilt.

    Most of us end up owning several, in roughly 20* increments. Some like a 0/20/40... others a 50/30/10.
    So sounds like you need to pick between a 'do it all' quilt or building a quiver of options.
    Many LD hikers have adopted this 'one quilt' philosophy since quilts are so easy to vent.

    Assuming all else is equal (as in all quilts in question achieve the listed rating)...
    20* is the commonly adopted 'do it all' quilt. Though worth noting that this choice is often balanced against those who hike out west more often where lows are often lower.
    30* is the next most common choice as most three season hiking where western issues caused by elevation or desert are not as common.
    East of the Mississippi t I'd call that a reasonable baseline... it's winter or its not. You're going to swap in a colder quilt as temps regularly hit freezing and lower.

    Only you can really answer the question if 20* has been overkill for you or not. Are you in bad company with a 30* quilt... not at all.
    As others mentioned... in modern UL quilts (Enlightened Equipment being a great example)... the shell material weight has come down quite a bit. That alone reduces pack size.
    With roughly a 1/4" or so of loft separating that 10* difference... you are not talking earth shattering differences in weight or pack size when comparing the two.

    The biggest upgrade for you has nothing to do with rating; but simply with more modern materials.
    Golite was never a really a premium brand, just an affordable one. So really ANY modern, quality, UL minded quilt is going to be an upgrade for you period.

    There are some good brands out there- several emerging hammock vendors who are offing a lot of bang for your buck.
    Enlightened is a reliable choice at a very good value.
    Katabatic makes very nice stuff... but double the price of EE nice?

    I would first make the 'do it all' vs Quiver choice.
    If I was forced to pick one for a long season of hiking... I might just spring for that Katabatic quilt. Say the 30* Palisade knowing it's a conservative rating, nice cut, and solid quilt running $400
    If I was able to gear up between trips of mostly shorter duration (predictable conditions)... I'd be more inclined to build up my quiver and purchase one, two or even three for the same price as a Katabatic.
    No matter how sweet it is... pushing that 30 into the teens is going to be unpleasant. Using it up to 50* isn't going to be great either. So the option to use a 20 or a 40 sounds much nicer to me for about the same price.

    As others mentioned... picking up a 40/50 may be better if you can only afford one new quilt.
    A 40* stock Enigma is a great option for 13.5 ounces and $265 with a nice solid 850 fill down that is unlikely to be bothered as much as 900+ fill power in humidity and nearly half the weight of your current quilt.
    Your current bag does the job well enough if you need to 'stop there' on your budget and this would be a big upgrade for at least half your season of use.
    Down the road popping into a 20* enigma for $290 at 18.90 ounces is a pretty good deal too.

    That's two very high quality quilts at $555 vs a very nice $400 do it all 30* that weighs roughly 17.5 ounces.
    But if you look hard at the EE stuff... you'll see what others were saying regarding a few ounce bump between the two options... which is another reason those waffling on the 20/30 fence fall onto the 20* side. Many aspiring LD hikers on the AT 'fear the smokies' and make the choice solely on that relatively short stretch of trail.

    If you like the 0/20/40 idea... Comparing that 13.5 ounce 40* I could push with a few pieces of clothes to that 18.9 ounce 20*... that's a versatile set to have that is nearly a 50% increase in weight difference I'd be happier to carry for either type of trip.
    Course you could just go with a 30* enigma at $280 and 16 ounces and truly save 10 ounces today... saving a other seasonal choices for down the road.
    I personally like the 50/30/10 quiver... I don't really believe in down for warm/humid trips and use a 45* synthetic for summer.
    That's typically then 40's on to 90's for me and I don't need to worry about rain or the fact that building a 50* down quilt is mainly BS in real life. (or could easily be handled by a $25 CDT)
    The 30* fills in for me that 30-50* range but still keeps me light and fast. And when it is cold... I'm not likely to bother pushing it but commit right to a zero or 10* rather than mess around. I don't have 10 days of food nor am I looking to make any miles on an overnight winter trip to deal with so no point in pushing it. For true winter (below zero) my 45* synthetic is sized so I can stack it on my 30* or 10* to create a very solid combo better than down alone.

    Nothing against Nanatuk but I don't see anything so amazing they are doing better than the others in Top Quilts.
    They are not as differential tailored as Katabatic, nor can they offer the volume and savings that Enlightened can deliver.
    They don't have a decade or more of sales, experience, and reputation to reliably judge them. You want to support a growing cottage biz... more power to you and thanks for that. I own a tiny biz, but I stay objective on the warm fuzzies with your money.

    On the budget side- https://www.hammockgear.com/economy-burrow/
    Here's a 40*, 16 ounce standard quilt for $129.
    Bump to 30* and you're at $150 and 18.5 ounces.

    There are some quality 'budget' and 'Econ' models coming from the hammock guys and while they are not the bleeding edge of fabrics... they are well made by quality vendors at nearly half of EE's pricing. So owning a full quiver could be done at the cost of one premium quilt.

    More realistically though... picking up a budget 40* quilt is a nice option to build it all out in balance.
    $129 vs $265 enigma means you're paying double to go from 16 oz down to 13.5.
    On the 20* side though...
    $160 econ 20* vs the $290 Enigma and the 22.2 vs 18.9 ounce may not be the end of the world... but with the econ model the shell will be bulkier and I will care about the pack size more. So I might be more inclined to spring for the EE quilt for this one.

    Even if I do... $290 +$129 is $419... Twenty bucks more than the Katabatic Palisade alone.


    AT SOME POINT...
    Quilts are way better than they were even five years ago, vastly improved from a decade ago. Almost all of them are very high quality, with quality materials and fills.
    You really cannot go wrong and we are often talking 2-4 ounces separating the 'best in the world' vs 'reputable vendor' here.
    You're talking a liter or less of pack size between shell fabrics too.

    I'll be happy to geek out with Dogwood but in reality things have almost gotten comically easy and there is no need to punish yourself with the minutiae. All the tricks we had to learn a decade ago to shave pounds that required at least one or two books to explain can be handled with about $100 and a few keystrokes. Even if you go 20* over what you think you need... you're not going to pay much of a penalty now.

    Buy from a trusted cottage vendor with a 10d shell, 850 fillpower, and close enough to the temp rating you plan to use and you're fine.
    If you don't have money- buy from a trusted cottage vendor with established designs who simply bumped up the shell weight and fill power a little to save you money.
    If you want a mummy for temps below 20* buy Western Mountaineering once and be done with it.

  5. #25
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    FWIW... I do own a 950 FP treated down top of the line 7d shell Enlightened Enigma I've been sleeping in for several months now.

    I'd spring for the 7d shell again in a heartbeat.
    There is some science and debate that the treatment can enhance the structure of these 900+ FP downs and result in better structure, less humidity creep, and less structure collapse. Basically that the treatment solves all the complaints the crusty among us like Tipi and Wayne speak of when discussing these fills. As Wayne commented... a 1990 era 700FP isn't really much different than today 800/850... It's mainly a numbers game. Sorting equipment has improved, as well as the total volume of down harvested. So the fact that there is more ultra high quality down available is not complete BS... but it's not quite as cut and dry as it looks.

    Either way... put my money where my mouth is and continue to test it, but still not sold on the 950 treated doing anything amazing.
    If anything it seems to 'self regulate' better in warmer temps (let more heat go). Not necessarily a bad thing but at the moment that seems the primary noticeable difference in weeks of use.
    Course the 7d shell material may a factor in that as well. Red delicious to Granny Smith exist in my testing it seems.

  6. #26

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    I've had my WM Puma bag for 10 years and it still has it's 10 to 12 inch loft so it should go another 10 years with heavy use (long backpacking trips and every night out in the backyard).

    Treated down? Technology comes along to ruin a good thing and fix something that's not broken.

    Does Feathered Friends or Western Mountaineering use Downtek or whatever it's called? I hope not or I'm gonna have to find another brand.

    Discussion here---

    https://backpackinglight.com/forums/topic/83532/

  7. #27
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post
    I've had my WM Puma bag for 10 years and it still has it's 10 to 12 inch loft so it should go another 10 years with heavy use (long backpacking trips and every night out in the backyard).

    Treated down? Technology comes along to ruin a good thing and fix something that's not broken.

    Does Feathered Friends or Western Mountaineering use Downtek or whatever it's called? I hope not or I'm gonna have to find another brand.

    Discussion here---

    https://backpackinglight.com/forums/topic/83532/
    They remain treatment free- http://www.westernmountaineering.com/about/

    Water Repellent Down

    In recent years technology has emerged for treating down to make it more water resistant than it already is. We are in the process of conducting our own long term testing on goose down which has been treated with a “water repellent” finish. While we remain hopeful that the technology will prove to be useful, our products are designed to last a long time. For this reason we feel that further testing is needed before we can determine how these treatments perform over many years or decades. The down we use can last a quarter or a half century, and at this point we haven’t seen any product which can match the amazing longevity and performance of our pure and naturally harvested goose down.

  8. #28
    Registered User Just Bill's Avatar
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    I personally went from 'do not buy' to 'don't care' regarding the 850 fill.
    I have no issue with the 850 zero PFC DownTec... not so sure about the other flavors and if they have improved but at least this product seems to 'do no harm'.

    Others had enough trouble to quit (zpacks) but Tim at EE sourced a product that seems to work just fine and is a few generations in now.
    My original use of it in making some quilts was that it was clumpier/poorly coated and I had enough issues getting it to reloft that I never bought it again from that supplier. Seemed that was the more common complaint (over-application related loss of performance).

  9. #29
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    Umm, so that's not geeking out...?

  10. #30

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    Like with everything else---there's no long term health reports on the chemicals they use for DownTek or DriDown etc. In other words, we're inside a sleeping bag for half of our lives inhaling whatever new crap they think is good for us. One reason I stick with Hilleberg tents is they don't use the godawful stinky flame retardants other tent makers use.

  11. #31
    Registered User scope's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tipi Walter View Post
    Like with everything else---there's no long term health reports on the chemicals they use for DownTek or DriDown etc. In other words, we're inside a sleeping bag for half of our lives inhaling whatever new crap they think is good for us. One reason I stick with Hilleberg tents is they don't use the godawful stinky flame retardants other tent makers use.
    Ok, that made me laugh. You’re about the only one here where that is applicable, the half your life thing. 99% of the rest of us don’t get remotely close.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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    - Kate Chopin

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    The OP wrote in the very beginning of his opening post "considering moving from the 20* to a 30* to save weight and space in my pack. It would save me around 10 oz and moving from an 800 fill to a 900 fill would save me space too."


    In effective communication the writer or speaker starts with the main theme or topic or idea, no?

    Unless, I'm dyslexic and don't know it, or there's a 'new' way in which paragraphs and thoughts are structured I'm not yet aware of, and even though not in the UL Forum, it seems, just seems to me, this thread can be summed up in one main set of goals, topic, or idea ---- saving wt and space. Am I confused about this?






  13. #33
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    Blue Indian, you asked, "has anyone made a similar transition and regretted it? The quilt I am looking at has awesome reviews in that folks say they've been able to take it past 30* easy and I plan on getting 1oz overstuff."


    Yes. I went from two different 20* accurately rated very high end down most UL I could find sleeping bag options to the most accurately rated very high end most UL down 20* quilt(Nunatak Arc 20" w/ 1 oz overstuff in the footbox) to a different very comparable(length, fabric, FP, width, etc) 20* quilt. Each time I did it the overriding goal was to "save wt and space." The thought I know well! I stubbornly tried making it work. Each time I eventually regretted it in the field because honestly I had my UL head too far up my UL wt and space saving seeking arse! 1) I slept less and less soundly as a result affecting hiking performance and day time attitude. 2) I kept adding more wt and volume and do re mi and complexity back into the sleep system to compensate. I found myself going to specific sleeping clothes, longer more insulating pads/pad systems, adding a liner or bivy more often, etc. I found where I slept changing to compensate.

    What I found for myself, and what I strongly suspect happens to many others that so often ignore it, is that my sleep system's overall wt and volume weren't meeting the expected goal of wt and space saving deceases initially assumed.


    The same can happen going to a 20* quilt to a 30* quilt.


    FWIW, when I chime in it most often it is because I've experienced similar or have personally experienced situations, gear, set ups, conditions, trails, etc. I'm offering for consideration personal mistakes and solutions I've found that may apply to others so they can benefit from them without having to go through the longer learning process of making the same/like mistakes.

  14. #34
    Registered User scope's Avatar
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    I agree with this.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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    - Kate Chopin

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    My philosophy
    Is that sleepy time is my refuge
    After 25 mi, i look forward to laying down, relaxing.

    A stray cold night occassionally is tolerable
    But forget being cold all time
    That isnt ever worth a couple oz, that you cant tell is there.

    Dont scrimp on cozy sleep , IMO.

  16. #36

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    Quote Originally Posted by blue indian View Post
    Im not even including Warbonnets new offering for a 30* quilt coming in at 14.32 oz...

    So here is what I dont understand....

    How can Warbonnet be claiming a 30* quilt at 14.32oz with 9oz of down while Nunataks 30* UL quilt comes in at 17.8 oz with 11.2 oz of down? How can they both be rated at the same temp rating with the variation in down fill?
    Shell material (7D vs 20D... biggest difference) and down (800fp vs 'mythical' 950) and maybe one is wildly optimistic on the rating. Possibilities.

    My 30deg EE Enigma reg/reg with 7D/950 weighs 14.12oz and is warm at 30 deg. For me. Smooshes down crazy small.
    Last edited by cmoulder; 12-28-2018 at 10:29.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

  17. #37

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    Quote Originally Posted by blue indian View Post
    Im comparing my Golite 20* quilt (26oz) to the Nunatak 30* Arc UL quilt (17.8oz).
    Sounds right. My 6' Wide Katabatic Palisade is 20.3oz and has 2oz more fill than the regular width version(and maybe a fuzz more for the size and rating than the comparable Nunatak based on a quick look at their site-their new stuff is *very* nice!), so they should be quite similar overall. I'd make that switch with no reservations, personally.

    I replaced both a 24oz 42.6F EN rated Marmot Arete and 40oz 10F EN rated Pinnacle(they're basically the same bag, except for a draft collar, with 8.4 vs 22.5oz of 800 fill) with that underrated "30F" quilt almost 5 years ago. Used the Arete for 1 night since then, and the Pinnacle for 0. A down parka and grid fleece bottoms that I'm already carrying for use in camp at temps I'd use the Pinnacle let me get away with the ~20oz lighter quilt, instead(sleep super warm, so that can actually be below 0F for me).

  18. #38
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    What you're doing Blue Indian mimics my progression. And, you're asking many of the same questions I do. I feel your concerns. I felt like I was in the deep end of the pool while learning to swim.

    I went from a WM 20* Ultralite sleeping bag to a Golite 20* quilt to save wt and space. Cut and dried that's why I did it. All that quilt stuff about versatility and ventilation were not my motives. In fact I had no problem with versatility and being able to ventilate using the WM Ultralite so IMHO that's quilt hype to some extent as it individually applies. The length and shoulder width were comparable. I was using the same basic core 3 season kit with both core sleep system pieces in coming to conclusions. The GL 20* I think was 800fp. The WM Ultralite 20 was 850 fp. I'm not sure about differences in comparing shell and inner fabric wts. I wore the same hat, a hat I hiked in too, and dry socks while sleeping in both the bag and quilt. I froze my arse with entirely too many unacceptable deeply chilled nights between 25-30* using the GL 20* UL. These were temps I was always sleeping warm and sound in the WM Ultralite. In fact, I would even take the WM Ultralite to 12-15* with some regularity under the same scenario and set up. I was saving about 3 oz and a bit of volume opting for the GL 20* on a single piece verse single piece comparison. That's the small picture but it's deceiving! In short, I was ignorantly chasing UL sleep system Nirvana. I chalked up the cold nights in the GL quilt to my NB quilt inexperience. It will get better I told myself.

    I bought the GL 20* near when they went belly up for something like $260. I thought I was saving so much money, a bit of wt, and volume. Every oz counts, you know? To compensate for the cold sleeping using the quilt I exchanged a TRest Shorty @ 8 oz, $110, R 3.2, 47" long, 29.7 cubic inches volume for a newly purchased TRest Womans @ 12 oz, $150, R 3.9, 66" long, 36 cubic inches volume. It wasn't enough to stay as comfortable in side by side consecutive nights in like conditions in backyard and a few on trail comparisons comparing the WM 20*Ultralite to teh GL 20* quilt. So, I went out and bought a 3.7 oz silk liner @ $50. I switched to a heavier wt torso piece. I added Goosefeet Down bottles(a great down sock made by Ben). I found myself adding a MLD Superlight bivy to the quilt sleep system just to avoid drafts, something I wasn't inclined to do using the WM Ultralite.

    I played with Valandre and Feathered Friends bags(Swallow 20* UL) and 20* Flicker quilts. I swapped out the GL 20* UL quilt for the Nunatak Arc 20*. I then went with a EE 20* quilt. Then, I went with the Katabatibc 15* Sawatch all the time doing so to primarily save wt and space.



    All this was adding $, wt, volume, space, and complexity back in to achieve the same sleeping comfort and warmth I had with the WM Ultralite. When I added up the additional wt, volume, and costs in many cases my quilt based systems might might have been slightly less costly but to achieve the same warmth they actually often were more wt and volume. BUT, that's not what were told about quilts.


    That is why I much prefer to refer to sleep systems in making wt, cost, volume, warmth to wt ratios, comfort, performance, etc analysis. Someone referred to the mythological 950 fp in the lab rating of down that doesn't or rarely exits in the real world in the field. Well, it's also a myth for a quilt or sleeping bag to be used in the real world as a stand alone piece for sleeping. That's a rare occurrence and especially so with a quilt.

    Carefully ascertain under what precise circumstances quilt manufacturers are assigning temp ratings. Likewise, when anyone's review states something to the effect "I was toasty warm in my 30* quilt or bag; warmest quilt or bag I've ever slept in" - period - discard the review. It's akin to advertising. It can mean little to nothing as it individually applies to yourself! Likewise, in quilts only use amount of down and loft in inches as one general guideline in determining a temp rating BECAUSE, as I hope I've made apparent, a quilt based sleep system's warmth is not only about the quilt. And, for the love of God, please don't buy into the backpedaling notion that sleep system and quilt and bag warmth discrepancies can be explained away by how cold or warm someone sleeps. That scenario goes back to pre EN bag temp rating days.


    Quilts became currently popularized largely through the UL community largely desiring to save wt and volume. Well, some(many?) in the UL community(I'm a ULer sometimes SULer) have a tendency to leave out important individualized details and consequences in rah rah rahing our approaches and kits. Quilt sellers can engage in doing the same.


    Not a rant against quilts. I have three. I'm saying the individualized details as well as the bigger picture are important. Everything isn't always as it's presented. Look behind the curtain in making your own decisions.

    In my progression and user experiences were arrived at in making comparisons in the same temp rated bags and quilts under like conditions, approaches, and set ups. For you trying to gain insight and some fair comparisons while going from a 20* quilt to a 30* quilt is IMHO an even more problematic one.

  19. #39

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    Wow, I didnt expect this thread to get so many detailed responses.

    @JustBill and @Dogwood for taking the time to provide thought out responses.

    @JustBill's response should be in a publication! Hah

    I do appreciate everyone taking the time to stop in and provide insight!

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    Your questions, quilt questions, can be more complicated than some suppose. Those kinds of questions often require more complex answers. Despite any redundancy and long windedness I really hope to have shared something that offers you value. I sincerely hope you do better than myself. TU for having the focus and patience to consider what's being offered.

    All My Best DW.

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