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Kea
2005-08-23, 16:59
I have a Kelty Lightyear 3D 45 bag and am wondering how paranoid I need to be about protecting it's loft. After my last trip out, I pulled it out to air out and live in the big orange bag that came with it. Can I repack it for my trip at the end of next week, or do I need to wait until the last minute?

I've decided to use the Granite Gear dry sack to keep my sleeping gear in, and pack it as loosely as possible. Does anyone have any advice or cautions?

Seeker
2005-08-23, 17:36
i had a north face thundercloud that lost loft pretty severely over about 5 years, even stored loosely. if i had it to do over, i'd have kept it hung up full length, inside the house, instead of in it's storage bag out in the hot garage.

i'd wait til the last minute to pack the bag.

Two Speed
2005-08-24, 07:25
I try not to put my bag into it's stuff sack until I'm at the trailhead. Preferred location is on the tailgate of the pickup and I try to make that the last thing I do before taking off. Keeping a sleeping bag compressed will reduce it's service life. Basically, for long term storage, the looser the better.

GregH
2005-08-24, 19:33
I've kept 3 The North Face Cat's Meow bags hanging in the attic for 15 years and they're still nearly as good as the day I bought them. That's after a lot of Indian Guides campouts as well as trips up to the Ouachita Mountains (camping) and the Quetico Provincial Park in Ontario (canoeing).
I just purchased an REI Big Cat 20 degree down bag and I'm hanging right beside the Cat's.

Seeker
2005-08-24, 20:23
i think my thunderhead might have suffered a bit laying in the storage bag vs being hung up the whole time, or, more likely, i got it after it's been stored improperly by the retailer... seem to remember it was an end of season special. bought my daughter a tigger the same day, and it's still in great shape. stored it right next to mine.

oh well. finally got a WM bag, and it always goes into it own storage bag. should last a good long time.

Kea
2005-08-24, 22:05
So I need to hang the bag. Check.

How do you know if a bag has lost it's loft?

Just Jeff
2005-08-24, 23:32
Measure it.

Hold a yardstick (or any other straight stick, really) horizontally over your bag. Hold a ruler vertically beside the bag. Where the yardstick crosses the ruler is the thickness of the bag (assuming it's really horizontal).

Method #2. Lay a really light yardstick on top of the bag. Right next to the stick, push a ruler down to the floor. The edges of the bag should support the stick if it's not too heavy, and where it crosses the ruler will be the loft.

Measure it now so you have a reference, then measure it whenever you think it's lost loft.

Washing a bag can bring back some loft by removing the dirt and oils. If it's a down bag, you can stick it in the dryer (no heat) with a tennis ball to break up clumps and help it loft.

Kea
2005-08-25, 01:27
Washing a bag can bring back some loft by removing the dirt and oils. If it's a down bag, you can stick it in the dryer (no heat) with a tennis ball to break up clumps and help it loft.

Measure it. CHECK.

Does this also mean that when I come in from the trail, that putting it in the dryer on a no heat setting and letting it tumble for 15-20 minutes before hanging it again is also acceptable practice?

The bag I have doesn't have a lot of loft to begin with. In fact I'm wondering if it wasn't improperly stored by the retailer as well. It was new in the box, but it clearly had been in the box a long time.

Just Jeff
2005-08-25, 03:24
It probably says on the tag or box how much loft it's supposed to have. You can measure it, and if it's substantially lower you might consider taking it back.

Dunno if tumbling after every trip would help or not. Any roughing up the bag can hurt it, so I wouldn't do it unless it's necessary (like when you notice the loft decreasing). Maybe someone here knows more than I do about this, though.

peter_pan
2005-08-25, 08:22
Tumbling in the dryer for short periods, even on low heat should not hurt a well made bag or quilt....

Personally I fluff my quilts after most hikes... then store uncompressed...

BTW, We fluff every JRB quilt on low heat as the last step before final inspection...It removes material wrinkles, removes any latent moisture from the down...It also removes any loose down left from the manufacturing...Enables better finally expectation.

Pan

dougmeredith
2005-08-25, 11:50
BTW, We fluff every JRB quilt on low heat as the last step before final inspection...It removes material wrinkles, removes any latent moisture from the down...It also removes any loose down left from the manufacturing...Enables better finally expectation.

So you don't have any concerns about this damaging the baffles?

Doug

Smee
2005-08-25, 12:42
We haven't had a problem.

Recognize we're talking about a dry quilt being put in the dryer on the lowest setting possible for about 15 minutes just to fluff the quilt.

I wouldn't try drying a wet quilt. It's too heavy and might damage the baffles. I'd let it mostly air dry and then fluff it at the end.

franklooper
2005-09-13, 02:30
i had a north face thundercloud that lost loft pretty severely over about 5 years, even stored loosely. if i had it to do over, i'd have kept it hung up full length, inside the house, instead of in it's storage bag out in the hot garage.

i'd wait til the last minute to pack the bag.
If I knew then what I know now, my first bag would have been down. Never going back.

franklooper
2005-09-13, 02:32
It probably says on the tag or box how much loft it's supposed to have. You can measure it, and if it's substantially lower you might consider taking it back.

Dunno if tumbling after every trip would help or not. Any roughing up the bag can hurt it, so I wouldn't do it unless it's necessary (like when you notice the loft decreasing). Maybe someone here knows more than I do about this, though.
Tumble it on low or no heat for a few minutes with a tennis ball. No harm at all.

dropkick
2005-09-14, 02:22
Tumble it on low or no heat for a few minutes with a tennis ball. No harm at all.
I've always used a tennis shoe. Is a ball actually heavy enough to break up the clumps?

franklooper
2005-09-14, 22:00
I've always used a tennis shoe. Is a ball actually heavy enough to break up the clumps?
It works for me.

:)