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10547D.A.M. vs Underquilt - Why Choose?

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  • Dylan
    Sep 28, 2005
      Ok, I will be the first to admit that I am not an expert on DAM's as
      I had not considered one, and have been working on my own design for
      an underquilt while reading all the posts. It is very likely then
      that I missed something along the way, however, I do remember someone
      made a 14 oz DAM at home, and all the pictures I can find on here or
      elsewhere on the web look like all a DAM is a baffled sheet that is
      air tight right?

      Here's my thought then, why can't an underquilt have some or all of
      it's baffles made air tight. When you are hanging, it can be slung
      underneath and the valves left open so that it conforms just like any
      other underquilt. When conditions force you to go to ground, then
      simply inflate the baffles, close the valves, and voila, instant
      ground pad. If not all of the quilt inflated, the soft edge baffles
      could be made with velcro to attach to an overquilt and it would
      function as a sleeping bag, with the edges overlapping and preventing
      drafts. I was all set to order my material from Thru-hiker when this
      idea occured. I realize that this would be heavier than a non-
      inflatable underquilt, but as my design seemed like it was going to
      be 16-17 oz, I would not be opposed to going up to or slightly over
      the weight of a Jacks nest if I got even greater flexability out of

      What does anyone think? Would this work? Am I nuts for trying? If
      you think so, what does one make the air tight chambers out of? The
      professionally made DAMs seem to use some sort of laminated Poly,
      where do you get that or is there a better alternative out there?
      Also, they say their seams are welded, but if you are talking about
      poly/plastic/nylon, aren't those sorts of air tight seams really just
      melted together? If so, then I should be able to assemble it with my
      soldering iron or something a little cooler. Am I right about that,
      or is there another way it must be done to work? Those of you that
      did make DAM's, I am sorry but I don't remember how anyone made their
      seams air tight. Thank you all for raeding, and thank you in advance
      for the help.

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