For anyone interested, I just updated the KAQ test page.
Date: Dec 05 to Jan 06
Low Temp: High 40s F
Gear: HH Backpacker Ultralight Asym, KAQ Potomac Underquilt,
JRB No-Sniveller top quilt. Also a fit test on a homemade
Speer-type with ridgeline, without bugnet.
Worn: Nylon running shorts, cotton T-shirt
I've used the underquilt a handful of times on the HH this month,
and it's worked very well as noted above.
I also tried to stuff it into JRB Python Skins with the HH
Backpacker Ultralight Asym. Didn't work...the quilt was too bulky.
However, Patrick has since removed 2" of width from the Potomac, so
that might be enough to make it work.
I also tried the Potomac on my homemade Speer-type (w/o bugnet). It
fit inside the Python Skins, but the final 12-18" required quite a
bit of stuffing. I'm pretty picky about compressing my quilts, and I
wouldn't feel comfortable with the compression and stuffing/shearing
motions needed at the middle when the two skins came together. I
think the new quilts with the reduced width would probably fit well
enough to solve these problems, though.
FYI, I measured the circumference of the Python Skins at 12" at the
widest point...I think it's definitely worth making some skins large
enough to fit the quilt. After getting the proper fit, my concern
would be folding the snake in the same place every time for packing.
It doesn't affect down any, but over time that might wear a thin
spot in the synthetic insulation. I'm not sure it would cause any
Potomac on Homemade Speer-type
I need to play around some more to get a better fit, but it fits ok
with a quick adjustment. I like how it minimizes the gap under my
knees, and the adjustable shockcord on the sides makes it snug up
around the hammock very well.
However, the bathtub shape causes gaps along the sides since it
doesn't have the HH-style side tie-outs. I tried attaching the
Potomac side connectors to the ridgeline with the shockcord. This
helped with the gaps, but the fit around the shoulders changed
because of the asym shape. Need some more tinkering to find the best
solution here. I'll sleep in it tonight and see what I can come up
I also used webbing supports on the homemade hammock, instead of the
Spectra cord on the HH. It held fine, but the prussik folded the
webbing when I pulled it tight. In the field, I'd have to make sure
the folds pointed down so they didn't funnel water into the
hammock/underquilt. Coupled with a drip string (that's a good idea
for any hammock/underquilt), I don't think this would be a
problem...just something else to check at each setup. Unless the
webbing twists during the night, maybe.
Still happy with this gear - haven't found anything that really
turns me off yet!