Top Quilt Considerations

Discussion in 'Loco Libre Gear' started by george carr, Feb 5, 2017.

  1. george carr

    george carr Tracker

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    In this thread I will try to sort through all the considerations and options when choosing a topquilt.

    An Overview...

    I venture it would be a fair to guess to say about 99% of all outdoor folks start with a sleeping bag. It's what is mass produced, and what the outdoor stores carry. As you become more involved in whatever your favorite outdoor pursuit is, and you meet more like minded individuals, you get exposed to other types of gear. The topquilt came about as backpackers sought ways of lightening their loads while maintaining comfort. A properly made topquilt will keep you every bit as warm as a sleeping bag, at a lower weight penalty. Most of the topquilt offerings on the market are made by smaller mom and pop "cottage" manufacturers that make each one for the individual user one at a time , as opposed to the mass produced offerings of the major brands.

    To Topquilt Or Not To topquilt.....

    While buying a sleeping bag from a well know manufacturer at your local outdoor store has a certain degree of comfort and familiarity to it, todays quilt manufacturers have really stepped up their game, with wares that rival and even exceed the big dogs in quality, comfort, and price. The first thing to consider is the majority of quilt manufacturers are located in the United States, so if Made in USA is important to you, they at least deserve a look.
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    We're Not In Kansas Anymore....

    ...or maybe you are, but the next thing to think about is the wide range of options available that allow you to make a quilt yours. While most sleeping bags come in a limited number of sizes, most quilts are available in a number of length and width combinations that YOU choose. Are you 6'6" and 300 pounds? There's an 85" long wide option out there. Are you 5' nothing and 98 pounds? Never fear, you get to pick yours as well. And if you don't see what you want or need most quilt makers will make something off spec for a modest fee.

    Do you feel constricted by a mummy bag? The you can get a quilt cut with no taper. Don't like the latest color offering? No matter, you pick your favorites. Do you sleep cold so you'd like a little extra down? No problem! Want to be able to open your quilt up and wrap it around to on those cold camp mornings? Get a snap footbox. The choices are (mostly)only limited by your imagination and the skills of the quilt maker.

    That brings us to the next point; quilt makers like to interact with their customers. Call a big name sleeping bag company and ask for something off spec and see if they a) can actually help you, and b) remember your name after they blow you off. Or better yet, see if they will show up at your next meetup and get to know you. Mom and Pop shops want to please you, and truly appreciate you as a customer.

    Decisions, Decisions.....

    So what to do. Well, if you have an old favorite sleeping bag that has served you well over the years, or off the shelf works for you then it's a no brainer. But if you are looking for something lighter, more comfortable, more custom or made by a craftsman, give a quilt maker a look. You might be surprised at what's available
     
  2. Usingmyrights

    Usingmyrights Supporter Supporter

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    I'm more and more considering a quilt. I need something then the overnights are in the 50-60* range and am thinking that I need to finally decide to try to hang for an overnight. Weight and bulk are also import as I like to try to keep my pack small.
     
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  3. Red Wing

    Red Wing Supporter Supporter

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    Try one of those costco 20.00 down quilts. Ive even seen them at TJ Maxx

    Outside of deep winter, a quilt is a pretty viable way to save weight over a bag and a bit more versatile. Usually more packable. Lots of pluses.
     
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  4. george carr

    george carr Tracker

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    Even in deep winter quilts are a great option. The market has been limited, and most folks seem to write off quilts for winter. Probably because we are the only company really offering sub zero quilts with usable features.
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2017
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  5. george carr

    george carr Tracker

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    Not sure where you are located, but I plan on having a hammock or three at the Pinelands camp out that Wolfcri is hosting in March.
     
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  6. Usingmyrights

    Usingmyrights Supporter Supporter

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    I'm in FL so I don't need to worry about going too cold. Probably into the 40s for now. I've been wanting to get by a Costco to check out the quilts. Sams as something similar that my wife bought for me, but it's more of a throw size so lacks the needed length.
     
  7. Red Wing

    Red Wing Supporter Supporter

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    Im definitely open to shaving weight for gear that works.
     

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