User Review: Wiggy's Super Light FTRSS
Design: mummy bag, colder rated inner, warmer rated overbag
Fill: "lamilite" proprietary synthetic
Temperature Rating: 0 degree inner, 35 degree outer, at least -20 together
Weight: 3 lbs outer, 5 lbs. inner for my wide/long bags
Price Paid: $330
Just found this site, looking for Wiggy's site. I was amazed to read some of the other stories in regard to their experience with Wiggy's. I have no reason to doubt either side in that, I can only relate my own experience.
I ordered a number of bags from a Wiggy's dealer in 1999. They were drop shipped to me directly from Wiggy's, and arrived in large cardboard boxes. I ordered bags for myself and girlfriend, and three relatives at the same time, as well as the lamilite ground pads. I'm sure I made my dealer's day, that day.
I can only relate firsthand experience for the Superlight FTRSS product (though all bags are still in use at this time). I am by far the heaviest user of the sleeping bags; I grew up within a scout troop that camped a minumum of one weekend a month, and that during the school year. I have let up somewhat since then.
I ordered the larger width/long bags, as I am more comfortable with more room in the width. This upped the weight somewhat but I prefer comfort in my sleeps compared to a hair more bulk and weight when packed. The small pillow is nice, though bulky and does not smash down too well for backpacking; I tend to carry it anyway, if not doing a major trek, since it is quite soft on the surface, but firm enough. Hard to explain, kind of like finding a perfect mattress. The pillow surface seems to be the same soft synthetic fabric used on the inside of the sleeping bag.
The overbag is rated at 35 degrees I believe, but is generally comfortable enough to use daily, at home. My home temperature is generally around 60 degrees, and I find that the overbag works fine at that temperature, usually with minimal venting.
The stuff sacks for the bags do not seem to be anything special, but have worked fine when I used them. I often leave this at home, because my pack has a compression section for the sleeping bag built in. I try not to store any of my sleeping bags under compression, between trips.
I have tried this bag recently in a 36 degree Oklahoma night, without a tent, and wrapped in 1/2 of a shelter half. I slept fine; I was wearing good socks and reasonable long underwear, and a good cap. A ground pad would have helped for the comfort, but I really didn't get cold, and was expecting to with near earth to bag contact (a shelter half is not too thick or insulating, but kept the bag cleaner for sure).
I did deliberately test the two bags in January of 1999 when new. I set up a 3-season tent, not one I would have taken backpacking in that season, to the side of my patio. I laid the bags out on the patio to "warm up" for several hours prior to going to bed. I placed the lamilite pad (much too big for back packing, in my opinion, but nice for base camp) in the tent at the same time.
The overbag was not warm enough for an hour's test in the backyard that night, the temperature was 6 degrees. Big surprise, eh? But as one other person stated, I felt more comfortable testing a new product close to home. I did not expect it to be warm, and at that point moved the superlight bag into the tent. I found that within 10 minutes after sliding into that icy bag, I was verging on comfortable, it was a huge improvement! In 5 more minutes, I was comfortable enough to go to sleep, which I did. For the test, I decided on no long underwear, my standard heavy wool socks, and no cap -- just to test a somewhat worse case than where I was at.
Since that time, the lowest I have been able to test the bags was approximately -12 fahr. I did join the bags up, and found them a little tight when joined, but did not mind that too much given the temperature, and the wind through a rip in that tent. We were sleeping on snow, I had a thermarest 1.5" thick air pad, and no lamilite pad. I was warm enough that I left the hood somewhat loose on my head. I -might- have been able to get away with just the superlight bag without the overbag, since I had on good underclothing, etc. but did not want to chance it where I was, not to mention getting up and joining them if I was already cold there. Another good night's sleep.
I use the overbag daily, and have since 2000. Honestly, it is not looking very pretty. It does get machine washed, and tumbled dry (no heat at all, 2 x 65 minute cycles) about every other week. The insulation was fairly thin in that bag to start with, I have no idea of the 'loft' either bag had when new, the woodland (custom color) overbag on my bed just measured about 2.5 inches tall total, as it laid out flat, so I'm guessing the top lofts at least half of that figure.
I have not had any problem in cold weather without the draft collar, but your mileage may vary. I just use the top cinch cord portion to draw around my face, and the bottom to tighten up the neck area. In several trips out with one or the other of these bags, they have gotten wet, and while I did not enjoy the sensation of sleeping in a wet bag, I was able to sleep fine once I got to sleep. I did find that they seemed to retain their warmth just fine when wet, which was a major selling point for me (I had some rather expensive down bags prior to this, that did compress a bit tighter, but were terrible in the wet, and not fun to have cleaned).
I do not consider the Wiggy's bags fancy; they seem to be made well based on my using experience, but I am not about to cut mine open to look inside. I have never dry cleaned these, it has always been the washer. The zipper as some have mentioned is rather huge, but has not been a problem for me. I plan to replace my high mileage overbag at some point here in the future; there is a small tear inside the current one, I imagine from a washing machine but don't know for sure. The lamilite has stayed inside the overbag fine though. I would buy this, as I don't think it was from a defect, and I think I've gotten more than my money's worth from that overbag.
If I were to be sent somewhere in service now, I would try to pick a single Wiggy's bag that would handle the lowest temp, and be ventable for the higher temps. I have only talked with Wiggy once, but I don't remember anything harsh when I asked for some additional details and to correct a shipping damage claim on one set of bags.
I am going to call this week and ask if he will make up a "junior bag" for my niece, since she is 2 I don't think the standard length bag will be necessary yet :) I expect to need to replace my overbag at some point; it is "drapeable" enough and feels good enough that I still enjoy using it daily (what do you expect from the hundreds of campouts as a lad?).
I am a very satisifed customer, and I've recommended these products to a large number of friends; those who have bought them have had good experiences. I would not want a friend upset with me for a bad recommendation, so I don't tend to recommend many products, this one I do.
Where to Buy
The Wiggy's Super Light FTRSS is not available from the stores we monitor.
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