Author Topic: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?  (Read 535 times)

stuartpb

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Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« on: 09:26:14, 31/08/17 »
I've bought my first down sleeping bag and am keen to look after it as much as possible when in and out of use. I want the new down bag to last as long as possible as it's cost me a fair old whack. I've watched some videos on how to look after the down bags, don't store compressed etc. and that all makes sense. One thing I'm not sure of though is which method, roll or stuff, is best when packing the bag for trips. Seems opinions are divided with some strong opinions being expressed in a couple of videos too ;D


I'm starting to think that it doesn't matter how the bag is put in the stuff sack for trips as it's not in there long before it's taken out. Or am I wrong and there is a better way of packing a down bag? With the synthetic bags I have always rolled them before packing but that's the way I was shown when I was a kid. The idea of just ramming an unrolled bag into a stuff sack seemed wrong because of that but was I wasting my time and effort? Opinions welcome!

fernman

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #1 on: 10:24:30, 31/08/17 »
Stuff it!
That's how my bags past and present, synthetic and down, were when I bought them, and that's what I continue to do. The makers must know best.
As for rolling, I'm pretty sure they would be bulkier that way.

Skip

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #2 on: 11:03:54, 31/08/17 »
For long term storage at home, keep the bag as loose as possible in its storage bag - very loosely rolled or loosely stuffed - and air it periodically.

For travelling in its compression sack, stuff the bag in randomly bit by bit - don't roll or fold it. Keep it compressed for as short a time as possible.

To keep it fresh and clean, always use a sleeping bag liner.

 
Skip

jimbob

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #3 on: 14:23:24, 31/08/17 »
Fully endorse what Skip says. I usually hang my bags in the wardrobe between uses altering its position on the hanger weekly at least so as not to get a flat spot anywhere. ( I adapted a hanger so the bag hangs on it to its fullest width double, over a 50mm piece of plastic pipe.) 

Oh and stuffing is also easier and quicker than carefully folding.
Too little, too late, too bad......

gunwharfman

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #4 on: 15:44:52, 31/08/17 »
Stuff! For me to much faffing about to roll and as it's often damp or wet in the morning I suspect that by trying to roll it the chance of it getting wet that much easier.

NeilC

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #5 on: 09:24:30, 01/09/17 »
I dare say it doesn't make a lot of difference but everyone I've ever met stuffs them. It's a called a stuff-sack for a reason.


Of much more importance is drying it when you get home. Air it for a day or so in warm conditions before storing it.

fernman

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #6 on: 10:01:06, 01/09/17 »
I do my best to air mine each morning during a trip, though much of the time this isn't possible due to rain, mist or heavy dew, not to mention no fence or branches to hang it on. Rocks are often available but they usually have bits of wet moss on them. In a pre- or post-walk base camp I open one of my car doors on the sunny or windward side and drape the bag over it.

Back at home I unzip the bag fully and lay it over an old-fashioned concertina-type clothes airer for two or three days until my wife tells me to get it out of her sight or it's going in the bin. Then I stuff, not roll, it into a pillowcase and put it into one of the under-bed drawers until the next trip (the sleeping bag, that is, not the wife!).

stuartpb

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #7 on: 21:12:03, 03/09/17 »
I tried the new sleeping bag out this weekend at Edale. I was toasty both nights and was a little too warm on Friday night, unzipping helped though. I stuffed the bag into the sack the night before I set off and it soon lofted up once I'd pitched up and unpacked the gear. On both mornings I was there, everything was damp in the tent, including the outer of the sleeping bag. On Saturday I gave it an airing before I set out on a walk and it was dry by the time I got back. This morning the damp was really bad in the tent, we must have had some fog through the night. I didn't get time to air it before I packed it to come home. I was up for 0740 and wanted to be on the 0908 train. Again, the outer of the bag felt damp to the touch so I hung it out for an hour or so, then put it in the dryer for a while. It's currently laid out in the spare room. When I woke up this morning I was really worried about the damp but it's dried out fine and has lofted again. It must just have been the outer layer that got damp as I was warm all night and the bag was still lofted. Stuffing worked for me this morning so I'll keep to that way from now on  :)

fernman

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #8 on: 23:16:41, 03/09/17 »
Stuart, you haven't said what make and model your bag is, does the shell (that's what the makers calls the outer material) have any sort of water resistant treatment? Furthermore, some bags have treated down as well (hydrophobic is the word) that should be less affected by damp.
Mine has some sort of a finish on it, it's a Vango Venom 600, 2015 model. I'm quite neurotic about getting any wet on it, though this has happened once or twice, just the odd spot, and to my great relief it hasn't hurt at all.
In essence it means that the sort of dampness you describe isn't going to harm the bag, it won't (shouldn't) get through to the inside. I've experienced it myself, it's like a sort of dew that settles on everything inside the tent including your sleeping bag, usually when the air is still and windless, and worse if you're pitched in a particularly damp spot, with everything outside wet from recent rain.
I think your bag would only be harmed by getting it wet inside, and putting it in the tumble drier shouldn't be necessary. It should be sufficient just to hang it somewhere in a room indoors, or drape it over a washing line if it's either windy or sunny. Remember that even if the outer has remained bone dry it still needs the airing to rid it of the moisture inside that has evaporated from your sleeping body during the night!
The latter point is also important during your trip, you should make a point of airing your bag when possible (taking weather or lack of somewhere to air it, as I mentioned in my previous post, into consideration). It might be in the mind, but I am sure my bag feels more cold and clammy when I get into it on nights when I was unable to air it in the morning.

stuartpb

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #9 on: 09:50:25, 04/09/17 »
Thanks for the info Fernman, much appreciated. It's an Alpkit Skyehigh 900 and the down is treated with Nikwax. What you said about the sort of dew, that's what it was like for me in the tent both mornings. I think my tent doesn't help with the build up of condensation. It's a Vaude Taurus 2p and the only ventilation it has is on the outer door. You can unzip the top part to create a vent, it's covered so it's rainproof. I'd pitched next to the stream at the campsite, the ground was damp on arrival and there was definitely some mist in the morning so I expected some damp. I was surprised at how damp some of my stuff got though. I'd left a cotton t-shirt out in the tent that I'd been wearing around the camp in the evening before. It felt almost wet.


I'd made a point of airing the tent and the sleeping bag as much as I could before I went on the walks on Saturday but I had to pack everything away for coming home on Sunday. The tent was sopping wet when I unpacked it but is dried out and stored now. For my winter camps I'm rethinking using the Vaude Taurus tent and looking for alternatives with much better ventilation.

fernman

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #10 on: 11:10:13, 04/09/17 »
The specs for your bag say it has C6 DWR coating "to shed morning drips" (I suffer from that, lol) and Nikwax hydrophobic down that "stays dry and retains loft up to 60 times longer than untreated down."
Sounds like you've got absolutely nothing to worry about.

Jonfun

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Re: Sleeping bags, roll or stuff?
« Reply #11 on: 14:53:26, 05/09/17 »
Stuff when in transit, they say not to leave stuffed when stored at home or for any length of time .... As I am lead to understand.