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11135underquilts vs. pads....

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  • Steve Joiner
    Nov 9, 2005
      Hi, all. I'd like to request a little of this sage group's wisdom....

      I've been using the following setup:

      above 60 degrees - a ~2 lb 40 degree down bag used as a quilt, no pad
      30 - 60 degrees - an 8 oz 27" target pad, a 22 oz homemade down quilt, a
      silk liner w/ maybe one layer of midwt thermals below 40 degrees
      10 - 30 degrees - the 8 oz pad, a 32 oz TR guidelite, the quilt, a silk
      liner, several layers of clothing, and several 'hand-warmers' if below 20
      degrees. 'Base' pack wt with this setup is about 10.5 lbs, with total pack
      wt for a 3-day weekend (also including food, 2 litres of water, clothing)
      about 25 lbs. It's probably below 30 degrees on 5 of my campouts a year,
      below 20 on 2 or 3.... I've been generally toasty with this setup in the
      mid-teens with strong gusting winds....

      The only issues I've had with this setup are:
      - the pad is still not wide enough. at lower temps my arms still get cold.
      I can usually find a place to keep them warm and sleep...
      - the trickiness of getting into the hammock, adjusting the pad and TR,
      getting into the liner and quilt footbox - esp at 3 am after a bio break!

      Other than that, I love the setup and the good night's sleep I always get.

      I've seen much of the discussion about underquilts, and find the idea
      appealing. Before jumping into an expensive purchase or a fairly intensive
      home project (also not sure that my wife has forgiven me yet for screwing up
      her sewing machine on the quilt project!), I've got a few questions....

      - will converting to an underquilt be a weight savings? my assumption is
      that an underquilt, without additional padding, will be good to about 30
      degrees. Is this correct? if so, isn't this a good bit heavier than my
      current setup? The peapod is about 30 ozs, the JRB about 20. Isn't this a
      weight gain over just the 8 oz pad?
      - the underquilt appears to solve the 2 issues I have with my current
      setup - the width of the pad, and the trickiness of having several layers of
      pads.... I assume it's also more comfortable than the pads. Is this

      So - my dilemma! Do I have to carry more weight to solve my problems? As
      I've thought through this, I've concluded that perhaps my best bet would be
      to go with the Speer 4x4 SPE, with 2 closed cell foam pads. I actually
      carry less weight (12 ozs if I'm calculating correctly), solve the first
      issue completely and mostly solve the second....

      Am I missing something? If I'm thinking correctly here, why are the
      underquilts so popular?

      Thanks for your input!


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