I scrounged some reflectix insulation material, which is plastic
bubble wrap with an aluminized layer.
My goal was to build a pod like pad to be used with a mayan net
hammock, as an experiment. I used duct tape to tape three strips of
reflectix together. I ended up with a section 7.5 feet long by about
4-1/2 feet wide. This was folded in half and duct taped on the ends,
to get a 7.5 x 2+ feet pocket. The opening is the top. The foot end
was taped along the top about 2 feet, and the head end was taped
about 1 foot.
When laying in it, on the hammock, it assumed a pod shape. I tested
it for about 1/2 hour in 20F in a garage with just a fleece blanket
1. It needed at least one more layer underneath the back and
2. Even three sections of reflectix was not wide enough. The pod
should be able to be velcroed shut (more or less) along the top.
3. My feet under the taped up foot box were very warm in just socks,
no blanket needed. By pulling the head box down a bit, I could create
a sheltered area over my head but still have a vent opening and be
able to look out.
4. I did not really test it long enough to know if condensation would
be a problem but I assume it would be. I was hoping that keeping the
top open would reduce condensation, but I don't think so.
5. The reflectix seemed to be reasonably durable. I don't think any
of the bubbles popped.
6. Most of the cold issues that I had were related to the thin
blanket I had over me.
I started out the test just curious, and not really expecting that
the reflectix would be successful. I will continue to experiment,
because if the condensation can be beat, this could be a good
emergency shelter for winter temps. It might be a useful hammock
pod, although it is pretty bulky.
The next experiments:
Try to get wider reflectix.
Increase the pod panel width to 5 or 6 feet.
Use a ridge line to pull the foot box and head box into shape.
Make a reflectix "tent" to cover the pod along the ridge line.
Add a second layer underneath the shoulders and back.
Improve the shape from a rectangle to a more profiled shape.
Try a down quilt instead of a thin blanket.
This is still just an experiment, I'm not making any claims that it
will work overnight. I have to wait till it warms up a bit till I
can test it!