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REVISED FR - Big Agnes Elbert sleeping bag - Sheila M

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  • S
    Hi Mark, I didn t get any edits from you yet on the FR I submitted on August 23, so I have resubmitted this with revisions. I sent the bag back to the
    Message 1 of 3 , Aug 31, 2008
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      Hi Mark,

      I didn't get any edits from you yet on the FR I submitted on August 23, so I have
      resubmitted this with revisions. I sent the bag back to the manufacturer because of a few
      problems with its fit with the sleeping pad and the zipper not working properly, but they
      didn't think these were problems at all.

      Sheila


      http://www.backpackgeartest.org/reviews/test/TESTS/LR%20-
      %20Big%20Agnes%20Elbert%20sleeping%20bag%20-%20Sheila%20M/

      http://tinyurl.com/5rua3j

      Field Report: August 31, 2008
      FIELD CONDITIONS
      I have so far used the Big Agnes Elbert sleeping bag for a total of four nights outdoors,
      including three nights while backpacking on California's Lost Coast and one night at a
      walk-in campground near the trailhead. I paired the Elbert with a Big Agnes Clearview Air
      Pad and slept inside a tent. The elevation was near sea level and the overnight low
      temperature was about 50 F (10 C).

      FIELD RESULTS
      I really liked the idea of this sleeping bag saving pack weight by having no insulation on
      the bottom and instead just relying on the sleeping pad that must be used with it for
      padding beneath me. This sleeping bag is nice and light. The combination of this sleeping
      bag and the accompanying Clearview Air Pad took more than a pound (about 0.5 kg) off
      my pack weight. The bag also packs significantly smaller than some bags I've used, which
      was especially great when I needed to stuff all of another person's gear into my pack with
      my gear toward the end of the trip. There are a few other nice features as well. The neck
      draft tube is the first I've ever seen like that and it works great. The pillow pocket is also a
      new feature for me and I loved having a place to put my fleece jacket that made it a way
      better pillow than if I'd just tried to roll the jacket in a ball. Also, the pillow pocket kept my
      pillow in place, even on the slippery sleeping bag.

      However, this sleeping bag wasn't without its problems. When I was writing the initial
      report, I noticed that the pad sleeve on the back of the Elbert fit tightly enough to make
      the pad curl, but I just didn't think it was a big deal at all, to the extent that I didn't even
      mention it in the report. The picture below shows the problem and is actually taken
      directly from my initial report. In the photo, you can see how the middle section of the pad
      is popping up because the pad fits so tightly in the pad sleeve. I assumed that the pad
      would flatten out when I slept on it or that I'd be able to fix the problem easily by letting
      out a little air, but I was wrong. Instead, what happened when I slept in the bag was that
      the pad popped up along one side, rolling me off the pad. I don't know whether the pad is
      too wide or the pocket on the sleeping bag is too narrow, but they don't fit together well,
      making it hard to sleep in this sleeping bag.



      Once I was in the bag and trying not to roll off the pad, I had a difficult time zipping the
      bag all the way closed. The zippers slide easily from the outside of the bag, but not so
      easily from the inside. The zipper gets stuck where it turns by my shoulders to follow the
      mummy shape. The only way I could get it close was to stick my arm out and close it from
      the outside. Of course, that meant I couldn't actually close it all of the way.

      It wasn't until the second night I slept in the Elbert that I found problems with the bottom
      of the zipper. During the night, the zipper opened up about 12 in (30 cm) by itself. This
      isn't a double zipper meant to be opened from the feet. In order to fix the problem, I had
      to unzip the entire bag and redo it.

      One more major sleeping bag problem came about when my Big Agnes Clearview pad
      busted after just a few nights' use. When my sleeping pad broke, I had no insulation or
      padding underneath me. The bottom of the Elbert bag, made up just of the pad sleeve, is
      incredibly thin in order to save weight. It makes for a very uncomfortable sleeping surface
      by itself. Of course, this wouldn't be a problem if my sleeping pad didn't break!

      Because of the sleeping pad fit problem and the zipper problems, I had to send my Elbert
      back to the manufacturer. It just wasn't working for me. My note to Big Agnes mentioned
      my three problems with the Elbert: (1) the pad sleeve doesn't fit my Clearview Aid Pad
      well, (2) the zipper cannot be pulled all the way closed from inside the bag, and (3) the
      zipper opens on its own by my feet. Two weeks later, Big Agnes sent my same bag back to
      me. Big Agnes customer service said they "completely understood [my] issue with the
      difficulty in pulling the zipper around the shoulder, but there is no defect with [my] bag or
      zipper." What a waste sending the bag back and forth only to find out that Big Agnes is
      aware of the zipper problems, but thinks that's the way it's supposed to be.
      Hmm...disappointing.

      SUMMARY
      I think the integrated pad is a great idea and should really cut weight from my pack.
      However, it really wasn't implemented well in this sleeping bag. I'm not impressed by this
      bag and cannot recommend it.

      PROS
      Warm shoulder draft tube
      Pillow pocket keeps pillow in place
      Packs small and light
      CONS
      Pad sleeve doesn't fit Clearview Air Pad well (they're designed to fit together)
      Zipper cannot be pulled all the way closed from inside the bag
      Zipper opens on its own at the feet
      No bottom insulation when pad breaks
      REMARKS
      This concludes my Field Report. My Long-Term Report will be available in November
      2008. Big Agnes and BackpackGearTest.org are providing me with the opportunity to test
      the Elbert SL 35o sleeping bag.
    • mwood_bgt@markandkc.net
      Sheila, Here are your official edits for your Big Agnes Elbert FR (Revised version). Just one minor edit. It s disappointing that a company like Big Agnes
      Message 2 of 3 , Sep 1 7:06 AM
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        Sheila,

        Here are your official edits for your Big Agnes Elbert FR (Revised version).

        Just one minor edit. It's disappointing that a company like Big Agnes
        isn't responding to their customer issues.

        When the changes have been made, feel free to upload and remove the file
        from the Test folder.

        Thanks,

        Mark Wood

        ----------> Begin Edits

        > FIELD RESULTS
        > I really liked the idea of this sleeping bag saving pack weight by having
        > no insulation on
        > the bottom and instead just relying on the sleeping pad that must be used
        > with it for
        > padding beneath me. This sleeping bag is nice and light. The combination
        > of this sleeping
        > bag and the accompanying Clearview Air Pad took more than a pound (about
        > 0.5 kg) off
        > my pack weight. The bag also packs significantly smaller than some bags
        > I've used, which
        > was especially great when I needed to stuff all of another person's gear
        > into my pack with
        > my gear toward the end of the trip. There are a few other nice features as
        > well. The neck
        > draft tube is the first I've ever seen like that and it works great. The
        > pillow pocket is also a
        > new feature for me and I loved having a place to put my fleece jacket that
        > made it a way
        > better pillow than if I'd just tried to roll the jacket in a ball. Also,
        > the pillow pocket kept my
        > pillow in place, even on the slippery sleeping bag.

        Edit> "The neck draft tube is the first I've ever seen like that and ..."
        might want to change to "...I've ever seen like _it_..."
      • S
        Thanks, Mark. I uploaded the file and will go delete the test file now. Sheila
        Message 3 of 3 , Sep 1 8:40 AM
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          Thanks, Mark. I uploaded the file and will go delete the test file now.

          Sheila


          --- In backpackgeartesters@yahoogroups.com, mwood_bgt@... wrote:
          >
          > Sheila,
          >
          > Here are your official edits for your Big Agnes Elbert FR (Revised version).
          >
          > Just one minor edit. It's disappointing that a company like Big Agnes
          > isn't responding to their customer issues.
          >
          > When the changes have been made, feel free to upload and remove the file
          > from the Test folder.
          >
          > Thanks,
          >
          > Mark Wood
          >
          > ----------> Begin Edits
          >
          > > FIELD RESULTS
          > > I really liked the idea of this sleeping bag saving pack weight by having
          > > no insulation on
          > > the bottom and instead just relying on the sleeping pad that must be used
          > > with it for
          > > padding beneath me. This sleeping bag is nice and light. The combination
          > > of this sleeping
          > > bag and the accompanying Clearview Air Pad took more than a pound (about
          > > 0.5 kg) off
          > > my pack weight. The bag also packs significantly smaller than some bags
          > > I've used, which
          > > was especially great when I needed to stuff all of another person's gear
          > > into my pack with
          > > my gear toward the end of the trip. There are a few other nice features as
          > > well. The neck
          > > draft tube is the first I've ever seen like that and it works great. The
          > > pillow pocket is also a
          > > new feature for me and I loved having a place to put my fleece jacket that
          > > made it a way
          > > better pillow than if I'd just tried to roll the jacket in a ball. Also,
          > > the pillow pocket kept my
          > > pillow in place, even on the slippery sleeping bag.
          >
          > Edit> "The neck draft tube is the first I've ever seen like that and ..."
          > might want to change to "...I've ever seen like _it_..."
          >
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