View Full Version : Ray-Way Quilt coming along...Mother's Day Project

2007-05-15, 11:44
I'm very new to camping/hiking (other than car camping) but got hooked on some of Ray Jardine's designs for ultralight hiking/camping while being cost efficient. I purchased a quilt kit, tarp-tent, net-tent and had it all shipped to my parent's house.

My mother is an incredible quilter and I knew I'd need her help in interpreting the instructions and actually putting the items together. We actually did this on Mother's day...a little bonding is always a good present. :)

We decided to start with the quilt, figuring it would be easier...not so sure after the fact knowing how thick that batting was (I ordered the alpine upgrade) and sewing all three layers together. Here are some pics from our progress:



In the middle of construction we took a break. My Mother wanted a ride on my new bike, so who am I to deny her? :p

http://i16.photobucket.com/albums/b50/bster13/IMG_2153.jpg (I love to camp while on long motorcycle trips!)

We finished most everything, including the gorget and draft stopper. Our progress was halted at the end because we did not have a needle large enough to accommodate the thick yarn that holds the insulation in place. Once that is complete we just need to sew up the footbox, not a big deal. In the end there were some steps that I thought could be better described. Especially making some of the cuts or laying out the two layers of rip-stop and the insulation in between. It's much easier to work with the rip-stop separately from the thick batting, then once you have the rip-stop cut out lay the battering under it and use the rip-stop as a cutting template, rather than trying to cut all three layers at once. We also gave a 1 inch allowance for the amount of batting needed (the instructions have you take specific measurements for the length and width considering your height/girth) and then trimmed the excess before we starting sewing it all together. In the end, we figured everything out, and the instructions were good. The thread I purchased from Ray-Way.com was a good buy as well, as my mother compared it to some thread she had that she thought was strong and the Ray-Way thread was superior, good to know it wasn't some marketing BS. :p

We anticipate the tent projects to be even easier without having to work with the insulation and thus far (with my mother's sewing technique and ray-way design & materials) the quiet looks very professional. :)

I'll post more pics as we make more progress.


2007-05-15, 12:52
Dude, you've got one precious MOM! She knows her sewing machines also (Bernina). My wife and I deciphered Jardines' directions to make the same quilt sometime back, I love mine. It does take up quite a bit of volume in a lightweight pack, that is it's only drawback. I've found Jardine's claims about his insulation being superior to be true, he buys his uncompressed and ships it to you that way. When you buy a chinese bag the insulation was compressed (a lot), stuffed in a container (slow boat to china), sewed into a bag, restuffed and placed into a container ship (read, slow boat to china's #1 customer, IE us). A lot of potential loft it lost in the process, you are essentially buying a bag with worn out insulation.

2007-05-15, 13:01
I have the mariposa...so I'm hoping with that pack's size I'll be ok with letting the quilt lay in the bottom not so crunched up. I purchased the kit for the stuff sack as well. And yes...my mom rocks. :p

Can you comment on how low a temp. u could sleep in with your ray-way quilt comfortably, what clothing u had on, and what insulation u had in the quilt? (the normal .75, or the Alpine .9in option) thx.
FWIW- she was sewing on a bernina, and the other machine in the picture is a bernina as well...and then she has the grand daddy bernina (6-7 grand I wanna saw? :o) downstairs, haha. They are going on a European vaca next year...guess where they are stopping? The bernina factory haha.

2007-05-15, 19:45
Bster, my daughter and I were on the Pine Mtn. Trail in early March and it got cold for GA in March, low thirties. I now have a KAQ/ Rock Wren/ Hennessey Hyperlite setup so of course my daughter had that (she is a really cold sleeper). I was in my Backpacker Ultralite with the Jardine (alpine upgrade) quilt. For bottom insulation I was using two 0.25 in. 36in. wide pads from Oware. I used a wool balaclava for a head cover (essential with a quilt). I was quite comfortable all night and it was really windy also, a fair bit of convection going on I'm sure. I could feel a slight coolness on the bottom which told me the pads were functioning near their lower limit. You should make Jardine's bomber hat, you probably have the scraps to make it from, just order the plan. With a thin polypro balaclava, a thicker fleece balaclava, and that bomber hat, you should be set for well below thirty, maybe twenty-five. With a Potomac (Kick Ass Quilt) maybe a bit lower. You can get plans for the bottom quilt on the net.

2007-05-15, 19:50
I forgot to state my wardrobe for that night:
Smartwool sox
REI nylon pants
Visa T-shirt
Underarmor LS T-shirt

In other words, what I was hiking in without any added insulation. I had a hooded primaloft jacket from REI (I think it is called the Gossamer, it weighs a pound exactly) in the hammock with me, I never needed it.

2007-05-15, 23:58
I was looking at the Ray-Way quilt site just the other day.
I was thinking about how it would work in a hammock.

I think he's got some good ideas incorporated into his quilt.
I especially like the draft stoppers.

I just don't understand his insistance that you don't need anything except your pad under you.
As a long time camper who slept on the ground for the majority of it, I know that what's under you makes a major difference in how warm you're going to be.
You can have 12 quilts on top of you and if you don't have good insulation under you it will pull the heat right out of you.

Maybe I'm missing something, or he knows something I don't.

2007-05-16, 07:18
Dropkick, I've used my Ray Way quilt on a pad at about forty, I found it a bit drafty. When you move around you get a little cool air in. In a hammock this is a non issue. I hardly ever move around in a hammock (no pressure points) and the quilt stays tucked in between your body and the hammock. If you were going to make a quilt just for hammock use, it could be a bit narrower than Jardine's instructions and work fine in a hammock. I think you could shave 4-5in. off of his instructions and be fine. That quilt would then be REALLY drafty on the ground, so it would be a special use item at that point. A quilt in a hammock's only "down side" is head insulation, and that is easily dealt with.

2007-05-16, 20:31
...................... A quilt in a hammock's only "down side" is head insulation, and that is easily dealt with.

I was considering his "Bomber Hat" for that reason. While mulling this over, I pulled my winter coat out of the closet for a walk. The coat is down filled (well probably some feathers too :angel: ) and has a down filled hood with a draw cord and cord lock. So after my walk, I'm taking this thing off and suddenly it hits me - that hood is simply a "Bomber Hat". I looked closely and the hood is attached under the collar with snaps. I snap if off, put it on and cinch the draw string down - instant "Bomber Hat". Not made out of light weight ripstop or anything like that, but man it is WARM and to top it off - my "Bomber Hat" comes at the same price with a nice warm coat attached to it :biggrin: Saved some money there. Also, I have found that I can wear it on my feet in the hammock if I need too (especially when I first get in and my feet are cold) - with clean feet and socks of course.