Sleeping Bag Liners – Why use them & Differences based on Materials

Sleeping bag liners are the humble but a critical piece of gear for outdoor adventures.  Imagine sleeping in a sleeping bag night after night, and not being able to wash the sleeping bag.  The liner offers a solution here, and more.

Sleeping bag liners provide many benefits:

  • Improved hygiene. Sleeping bag liners are lighter, and easier to wash than sleeping bags themselves.  Between outdoor or backcountry trips, it is easier to wash a liner than the whole sleeping bag.  Or if going on extended trips, a couple of liners, help extend the time you can go without washing the sleeping bag itself.  Or if you are sleeping in hotels with uncertain hygiene of bed linen used, or on train journeys, sleeping bag liners prove to be the solution for ensuring hygiene.
  • Lightweight sleeping bags. In warm weather or fair-weather conditions, sleeping bag liners can function as sleeping bags.  They are lighter and more economical than a sleeping bag.
  • Additional thermal insulation & warmth. Liners provide additional warmth during colder nights.  The additional amount of thermal insulation is dependent on the materials used.  They can also act as vapour barriers depending on the materials used, and help with preventing evaporative heat loss.
  • Comfort: Some liners, depending on the materials provide, next-to-skin comfort for those who are very discerning about such comfort vis-à-vis the fabrics used in a sleeping bag.
  • Economics: By using a sleeping bag liner, you will extend the life of your sleeping bag, which is typically a bigger investment.

 

SLEEPING BAG LINER MATERIALS

 

At Gipfel, we make 10 models of sleeping bags, based on material and shape!  Very few outdoor companies invest into so many models, as we do.  There is a reason for this.

We offer liners in the following materials:

Each material provides certain advantages or disadvantages with respect to weight, price, thermal insulation or warmth, how quickly they dry, comfort to skin, and breathability.  Below is a comparison chart for our sleeping bags.

Liner material/Properties Weight (gms) Economics/Price Insulation/Warmth Quick drying? Comfort to skin Breathability
Cotton 290-300 Low Medium High
Khadi 460-480 Low Low Medium High
Silk 160-180 High High Quick High High
Nylon 120 Low Quick Medium Low
Fleece 500 Low Very high Medium High Low

 

SLEEPING BAG LINER SHAPE

We make our liners in both Mummy shape and Envelope or Rectangular shape.

Mummy shape is more form fitting and compact, saves on some weight, and can prevent heat loss slightly better than an envelope shaped liner.  But on the flip side, can be constricting for some body types and based on sleeping position preferred.

For an Envelope shaped liner, flip the pros and cons as versus the above.  Cost wise, there is no difference.  Please note the prices mentioned below are as of June 2019, and may change over time.

Liner shape => Mummy Envelope/Rectangular
Material Weight (gms) Price (Rs.) Weight (gms) Price (Rs.)
Cotton with Lycra mix 290 925 300 925
Khadi / Linen 460 480
Silk 160 3250 180 3250
Nylon 120 860
Fleece 500 970

INDIA’S EXPEDITION / TREK OPERATORS TRUST GIPFEL TENTS. HERE’S WHY.

At Gipfel’s Tents division, we think, dream, and breathe tents.

When we started making Tents, we wanted to create world-class products that could withstand the rigours of Himalayas at prices that weren’t inflated by the economics of shareholder value and outsourcing. Our tents are made inhouse, designed with thought, put together with love and quality components, and priced right.

We are proud of EVERY tent that we make, and when we make a tent, we make sure that it meets our minimum requirements of the three C’s: COMFORT, CONVENIENCE, CONDENSATION

Here are some key features about our tents.

1. High Quality Raw Materials: 

Anyone with experience with food, knows that good quality ingredients are the foundation to a sublime gastronomic experience.

As with food, good tents deserve only the best. Our poles are sourced from DAC in Korea, our fabrics from Taiwan, we use YKK zippers, or the tent guy line tensioners are amongst the best design.

A case in point with the tent poles, we largely use aviation grade DAC® Aluminium poles (7000 series) for our tents. DAC Aluminium poles are world’s best poles, will last you a lifetime without abuse, are light, and can withstand heavy winds. And yet, we provide a 5-year limited warranty on them for non-commercial use.

2. More space with the same footprint:

Many of our tents are roomy and airy. Orion and UFO series of tents have an intelligent design that allows the walls to remain vertical, and the roof is close to horizontal. The result is that the tents have more space and headroom. While this marginally increases the weight, our customers have come back to tell us that their stay was very comfortable.

 

3. Low Condensation: 

Right from the design stage we ensure that the tents are sufficiently ventilated.

Our 4-seasons tents have double-layered doors on either side of the tent. One layer is made from breathable polyester mesh while the other is made from non-breathable fabric. This allows for flexibility of options to keep the tent breathing.

This is particularly helpful in the case of 4-seasons tents with capacity of 3 persons and more. These tents are most susceptible to condensation because of the sub-zero surrounding temperatures and the sheer amount of vapour present inside the tent resulting from breathing.

In our single-wall tents we use water resistant and breathable fabrics, and intelligently placed ventilating chutes.

 

 

 

4. Convenience:

If you visit our Tents’ division, located an hour and half from Delhi, we are abuzz with activity; there is a palpable energy and a sense of urgency, but we insist, and we love it, when our customers visit us at our factory.

This not only helps us understand our customer needs better but also the conversations eventually convert into exchange of mountain stories and experiences over a cup of hot coffee.

But that’s not it alone, convenience stems from the fact that we are in India, and we manufacture locally (not outsourced) and offer repairs and maintenance on our products.  Despite the best quality materials there are always external factors, as in the case when a customer reported a punctured groundsheet because a trekker wore crampons inside a tent.  (Obviously, we repaired that tent).

Our turnaround time is 1 week or less for any repair.

Additionally, we have custom built tents to our Customer’s requirements.

Our customers look at us as integral part of their business logistics support!

5. Small things make a big difference:

We are constantly thinking of making our customer experiences better.  We are not just making ‘Tents’, we are creating an experience for you, through our Tents!

Design, materials, quality of manufacturing are all great, but small details such as the Jake’s foot (for inserting tent poles into the ground sheet) that we introduced to India or our new guy-line tensioners which are again revolutionary for India; these details go a long way in making your camping, bivouacking experience more fun and efficient!

 

6. Made in India, tested in Himalaya: 

The biggest advantage we have amongst world’s Tent makers; we aren’t located in some remote corner of a large country in an industrial complex removed from end user experience.  We are four-hour drive away from the mountains!

And the biggest mountains of them all; Himalayas!

Often you will find our testing teams (invariably, the very people who are creating these tents) making a dash over the weekends to the Himalayas to test new designs.  But we also test our tents in Sahyadaris and Deccan landscapes to get a wider perspective.

Additionally, we have a network of friends and expert users whose observations are carefully documented by our inhouse team. We value the feedback and act upon it quickly. It is not without any reason that we stand behind every tent we make.

 

 

7. Fully seam taped tents: We seal the seams carefully to ensure water tightness. Additionally, the threads are water repellent and seams are lap felled.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gipfel Figure Eight Descender usage modes

 

A Figure of Eight Descender is a versatile tool, and here are some modes of usage.  Please note, that this is not a comprehensive instructional, and many nuances of using a Figure Eight Descender maybe missing in this limited scope article.

LEAD BELAYING: STICHT MODE

Figure Eight is primarily a descender.  While it’s primary purpose is not belaying, it has adequate friction for top-rope belaying in Sport Mode or Munter Mode.  For Lead Belaying, only one mode is recommended, and that is the Sticht Mode.

DESCENDING MODES

Below modes, provide various levels of friction.

Normal Mode

This is the most common or the standard mode for descending.  Please note, that the rope around the neck should pass from the front, or facing the climber/descender.  The rope passing from behind, creates a high risk of  Lark’s foot or girth hitch.  When the rope passes from behind, it can ride up when encountering an obstacle, and form the Lark’s foot.

Avoid this.

Lark’s Foot or Girth Hitching risk is as shown in the next image.  This locks up the device, and the operator wouldn’t be able to descend in this mode!

OTHER MODES OF FRICTION WITH FIGURE EIGHT DESCENDER:

Sport Mode:

Munter or Cross Mode:

Rescue Mode:

Canyon Mode:

Auto-Stop Mode:

Figure-4 Wrap or Standard Vertaco Mode:

Sport Vertaco Mode:

Tete d’alouette Vertaco Mode: