Sleeping Bag Repair and Recycling

11:51 a.m. on April 19, 2011 (EDT)
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I have an ole bag that has at least 20 years of service.  Recently, as I was rolling it up and preparing to compress it down for stuffing into a compression sack when the outer lining ripped in several places.  I could probably sew or patch it up, maybe even use some repair tape, but was wondering whether, given the age of the bag whether there were other alternatives to ad hoc patching.

I doubt whether it is cost effective to have the entire outershell relined (who does that sort of thing anyway and if so at what expense).  Yet, when I consider the 'green' gear movement, with the emphasis on purchasing new bags with recycled material (consider this article, I wondered what alternatives some of you more experienced folks have used locally to recycle/extend the life of your sleeping bags. 

I know that there are liner inserts to provide insultation for the inner part of bag, but are there any exterior liners that might effectively hold together the old fabric of an aging bag.  Is re-lining an option these days?  Or is patching and sealing the best temporary option until the day comes when the ole bag is retired?

Once retired, are there places to send/donate the bag so that the materials can be reused?  What say you ole timers?


4:31 p.m. on April 19, 2011 (EDT)
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I'd hate to be depening on that bag on an outing if the material is giving out just from rolling it up.  I have some vintage gear that has surved me well for years but when the gig is up it's up.  I would guess tht all the material on the bag is suspect and I don't think it would be cost effective for you to have a basically new bag made.  Personally I'd through it in a plastic bag and either save it for when you rip a good piece of gear that needs more down or donate it to a gear repair shop (person). You can make a lot of down booties with the down from a down bag.  You could do a PIF (pass it foward) in the classified to pass it on to a memeber who might have a project if he/she is considering, just a thought.  There is also a thread under gear repair of people/shops (Gear Repair/Maintenance Service Recommendations: Share Them Here ) .  I bet you  could recycle it there as well.

4:56 p.m. on April 19, 2011 (EDT)
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Yeah, as you say the gig may be up for this bag.  Those are great ideas, apeman, thanks for the reply. 

5:01 p.m. on April 19, 2011 (EDT)
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What kinda bag is it.  Do know what the fill rating is?

6:21 p.m. on April 19, 2011 (EDT)
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Sounds like the outer skin is UV aged.  You can tell this because it will feel relatively brittle.  If that is the case, it is not longer trustworthy and is likely to rip elsewhere, possibly at an inopportune moment. Retire it.  If it is a down bag consider donating it to an equipment repair person who will use the filling to rehabilitate other stuff that can be patched up.


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