Goose down bags

10:48 p.m. on October 10, 2009 (EDT)
200 reviewer rep
4,119 forum posts

My goose down sleeping bag, a Golite "Featherlight" 20 degree bag, recently has been squeezing out down. When I wake every morning I find many of the downy feathers like little balls all over me and the surroundings.

What can I do, does my bag just need cleaning or something? I have used other down bags before but never experienced this so much before.

8:25 a.m. on October 11, 2009 (EDT)
42 reviewer rep
352 forum posts

A very small hole in the ultralight fabric will leak down over time. It's hard to spot, as it may just be a few broken threads. I had that happen with my WM bag, it was a worn-out spot barely visible where the metal attachment from a necklace rubbed on the hood fabric. It's worth taking the headlamp and checking the whole bag inch by inch.

7:29 p.m. on October 12, 2009 (EDT)
MODERATOR REVIEW CORPS
983 reviewer rep
3,475 forum posts

Also is this just common with the lighter weight bags or all of them?

I ask because I am considering a down bag, I currently use synthetic.

8:15 p.m. on October 12, 2009 (EDT)
200 reviewer rep
4,119 forum posts

I used to use a holofill bag, actually its in a gear cache in the Grand Canyon. My Golite Featherweight is nice cause it dose'nt have a zipper down the side. Its a solid tube sleeping bag with just a chest zipper. You might like one of these trouthunter. I dont think they make it anymore tho, but it weighs only 9 oz and is rated to 20 degrees.

12:51 p.m. on October 13, 2009 (EDT)
TOP 10 REVIEWER REVIEW CORPS
2,329 reviewer rep
5,271 forum posts

Gary-

The problem is with the extremely light fabric that GoLite uses on that bag. It is not as downproof as it ought to be. This is one of the many differences you get with the higher quality bags like Feathered Friends, Western Mountaineering, Integral Designs, and a couple of European brands. My son got an ultralight LLBean bag and had that same problem. Bean replaced the bag for him, and shortly thereafter discontinued that particular bag because the fabric was not sufficiently downproof.

7:45 p.m. on October 13, 2009 (EDT)
200 reviewer rep
4,119 forum posts

Thanks, I have contacted Golite about the problem. I will see what they say. The bag has not been in their catalog in a few years.

11:32 a.m. on October 14, 2009 (EDT)
200 reviewer rep
4,119 forum posts

Feathers shedding is natural, especially over time. Unfortunately, there
is no way to prevent it.

This is what Golite emailed me about my sleeping bag...

2:27 p.m. on October 14, 2009 (EDT)
TOP 10 REVIEWER REVIEW CORPS
2,329 reviewer rep
5,271 forum posts

Yeah, but .... Some materials used for the shell of down bags and jackets are more downproof than others. From your description, the "leakage sounds unacceptably excessive. Unless you like emerging from your sleeping bag looking you just got out of a pillow fighting convention [;=D

3:39 p.m. on October 14, 2009 (EDT)
72 reviewer rep
311 forum posts

Only my opinion but some of the new "ultra light"gear is on the substandard side of durability.I would rather carry 14 lbs of gear than 11lbs if the gear is of better quality materials that will not only last longer but do a better job.ymmv

7:36 p.m. on October 14, 2009 (EDT)
MODERATOR REVIEW CORPS
983 reviewer rep
3,475 forum posts

Only my opinion but some of the new "ultra light"gear is on the substandard side of durability.I would rather carry 14 lbs of gear than 11lbs if the gear is of better quality materials that will not only last longer but do a better job.ymmv

I agree, I do have some lightweight gear, but the better stuff ( a little heavier duty) last much longer it seems.

Then again I am not a thru-hiker.......

9:44 p.m. on October 14, 2009 (EDT)
12 reviewer rep
613 forum posts

No question, why endure gear failures that can compromise your safty to save a tiny bit of weight, this is foolish to me.

Many years ago, my first really good down bag was about worn out, after five years of constant use; so, I replaced it with a "Fairy" bag from New Zealand, which was not warm enough for B.C. winters.

While in Vancouver, I was told by the then and current dealer for Meindl boots, which I used to wear, that a certain Swedish double bag was THE cold weather bag to have, so, I bought one, for nearly 200 bux, a LOT of cash then.

I took it home to the Kootenays and started using it and it leaked down like a ruptured duck; I sent it back twice and they refused to replace or refund and I was stuck with it. It lasted about 2.5 years and then a buddy bought it for cycling use and I got my beloved original Marmot Mtn. Works custom bag and found that I did NOT have to suffer when camping below zero......moral of this tale of woe is that Bill is right, some bags just leak and, IMO, should be pitched and replaced.

I now will only buy Valandre and Integral Designs bags and have never had the slightest problem with either of those brands.

12:31 a.m. on October 15, 2009 (EDT)
200 reviewer rep
4,119 forum posts

I have thought of going back to synthetic bags. I used both over the years and I had a holofill bag that worked great but I cached it in the Little Colorado canyon area and can't retrieve it for a while.

But currently I am living and working here in Flagstaff and can barely afford my rent so it may be a while before I can replace my sleeping bag.

4:43 p.m. on October 15, 2009 (EDT)
26 reviewer rep
241 forum posts

I have a Western Mountaineering Highlite that seems to often have down poking out. It is normal on down bags, but some leak more than others as people have mentioned above. Before pulling the down out, however, try pulling it back in. That often works easily.
Before putting a down bag in a washer, try to not have any down poking out. You can lose a lot more down through the same opening. That happened to me once on the collar of a down jacket.

6:58 p.m. on November 7, 2009 (EST)
225 reviewer rep
1,192 forum posts

Only my opinion but some of the new "ultra light"gear is on the substandard side of durability.I would rather carry 14 lbs of gear than 11lbs if the gear is of better quality materials that will not only last longer but do a better job.ymmv

I pretty much agree here. Of course, in my case, I would rather carry 45 lbs of gear than 15 lbs of lighter alternatives. Just kidding but heck, my tent and pack together come in at 16lbs.


Don't do what I did: I left my 8 year old Marmot Couloir down bag(0F)in my 12x12 basecamp dome tent for a week while I was out using my WM Puma and when I got back there was an orange sized hole inside the bag made my a family of mice. Talk about down loss. Slapped three ripstop patches over it and it's now my "summer bag".


I've never had a down bag that lost much down, though, as the shells are made to be "down proof". The best for this is WM's microfiber shells. I suppose eVent is even better, my eVent parka only pokes out down at the seams, rarely.

August 20, 2014
Quick Reply

Please sign in to reply

 
More Topics
This forum: Older: Primus Stove Circa 1963 Troubleshooting Newer: Saddlesoap uses.......
All forums: Older: FS - 1994 Steep Tech Highline Large Newer: Vintage steeptech for sale