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  1. #1
    Registered User "Atlas"'s Avatar
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    Default Silk Sleeping Bag Insert

    I am interested in the using an insert for my winter hike and upcoming Spring hike. I saw that most of the inserts are $75-100 for a nice silk insert. Being of a frugal mindset, I was wondering why not just buy a silk sheet and sew it up to make my own insert. Seems cheaper and easier. Anyone have any experience making their own inserts? Would a Queen sheet be big enough to fold over and sew? Will a silk sheet hold up to trail abuse inside a bag?

    Thanks for the responses, Atlas
    Go Everywhere, Study Everything, Fear Nothing

  2. #2

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    I remember looking into the just the cost of silk fabric and then scrapping the idea d/t just the cost of the fabric...well and my general lack of sewing skills.

    I have two Cocoon silk mummy bag liners in great condition that I can sell you. Email me if you are interested.

    Thanks

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    Buy the silk yourself. It's inexpensive. Unless you want a zipper, the sewing is very simple. You can be sloppy and it won't matter much, if at all.

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    Forgot the link where I bought mine.
    http://www.dharmatrading.com/fabric/silk/habotai.html

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    Not to say making your own or buying one here are bad ideas--both would work. You may find though that a silk liner is not warm enough for very cold nights. The best only add about 9 degrees and lighter ones about 6. Heavier equals longer drying time as well. I would use an extra light and simple down liner bag-mine is Western Mountaineering and cost a lot but is worth it. Or another idea is to use long underwear of heavy silk or, better yet, fleece. If it is really cold you might find the synthetic 'puff' jacket and pants a good choice if your sleeping bag is large enough that they are not compressed by it. As always you want to wear a night cap, warm socks, and maybe mittens as well. It is often a great advantage to have clothing that can be used during the day if needed rather than having to wrap up in a sleeping bag and try to hike if you must move.

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    I'm not a big fan of liners, even though I just got one. I got mine mostly so I can be lazy about cleanliness and crawl straight into my quilt instead of getting cold while cleaning up. I'll note that I got mine for bike touring where my legs get some nasty road grime on them.

  7. #7

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    Wear extra clothes in bed. Liners do not come out and keep you warm if you have to get up in the middle of the night (it's tough walking in a liner , and getting into and out of a liner inside of a bag is more work than some would lead you to believe).
    I wear wool or polyester long johns and a light down jacket and down pants to bed when it gets cold. This allows me to carry a lighter sleeping bag which will not be too warm later in the year. I just leave the down jacket and pants home. I have also used the down jacket and pants as my only "bedding" in the summer - very versatile.
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

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    Registered User Wise Old Owl's Avatar
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    Wow Tinker has an excellent point and I got the wife to make a liner from a double bed sheet in soft cotton because I want it to absorb moisture and oder...Silk smells and has other issues in cleaning. So I took a pass on the whole thing. I too got the UL down jacket.
    Dogs are excellent judges of character, this fact goes a long way toward explaining why some people don't like being around them.

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  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Old Owl View Post
    Wow Tinker has an excellent point and I got the wife to make a liner from a double bed sheet in soft cotton because I want it to absorb moisture and oder...Silk smells and has other issues in cleaning. So I took a pass on the whole thing. I too got the UL down jacket.
    Thanks. I should add that down clothing and a bivy sack (with a tarp) is often all that's needed for late spring and early fall (before and after bugs) low elevation trips.

    Think outside the bag .
    As I live, declares the Lord God, I take no pleasure in the death of the wicked, but rather that the wicked turn back from his way and live. Ezekiel 33:11

  10. #10
    Registered User "Atlas"'s Avatar
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    Thanks for the responses guys. I am planning on long johns for the winter hike in addition to what I use for a sleep system. I thought that using a liner now would get me a liner I could use by itself in the Spring for use in my hammock. I can get a Silk sheet for next to nothing, through local Thrift Stores. For some reason we have a ton of thrift stores in my area. I also have a mother who is an avid sewing expert so making some UL gear over the winter I find interesting.
    Go Everywhere, Study Everything, Fear Nothing

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tinker View Post
    Wear extra clothes in bed. Liners do not come out and keep you warm if you have to get up in the middle of the night (it's tough walking in a liner , and getting into and out of a liner inside of a bag is more work than some would lead you to believe).
    I wear wool or polyester long johns and a light down jacket and down pants to bed when it gets cold. This allows me to carry a lighter sleeping bag which will not be too warm later in the year. I just leave the down jacket and pants home. I have also used the down jacket and pants as my only "bedding" in the summer - very versatile.
    That's definitely something that should be considered. I don't get up when I have to relieve myself in the middle of the night, so that's not a concern. I hate the time it takes to remove long johns. I get colder than I would if I wasn't wearing them and made or broke camp that much more quickly. Long johns aren't bad, but they're not for me unless it's cold enough that I need to wear them all day.

    Quote Originally Posted by Wise Old Owl View Post
    Wow Tinker has an excellent point and I got the wife to make a liner from a double bed sheet in soft cotton because I want it to absorb moisture and oder...Silk smells and has other issues in cleaning. So I took a pass on the whole thing. I too got the UL down jacket.
    I've thought about using a cotton liner on supported trail projects. I'm used to how it feels, so it'd help me sleep better. What are the cleaning issues? Honest question. I was planning on throwing it in the washer with everything else. Hot water, regular cycle, oxiclean detergent, low heat in the dryer. I don't care about shrinking, and I've tried accounting for it already. Bleeding isn't a concern. Supposedly it's a delicate fabric, which is odd since the fibers are touted as being incredibly strong. I'll probably do it anyway. If it's destroyed, it's not a great loss.

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