Welcome to “Ask Baz”

44 thoughts on “Welcome to “Ask Baz””

  1. I just bought the 10 Liter folding bucket at REI. I was hoping to use it for a variety of reasons but one is to wash the dishes. It does not say if there is any temperature limit. For example can I boil water and then dump it in the buket with a little soap to scrub the dishes..or is that too hot and would ruin the layers.

    1. G’Day Aija –

      Boiling water should not be poured straight into the Folding Bucket – the nylon fabric and internal thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) film could well be damaged by such high temperatures.
      A good rule of thumb for maximum temperature for the Folding Bucket (and for the Sea to Summit Kitchen Sink) is ‘hand hot’ – somewhere around 40°C / 100°F. The fabrics (and in the case of the Kitchen Sink, the seam taping) will stand hotter temperatures than this, but this gives you a margin for error. And: 40°C / 100°F is hot enough to wash dishes in the backcountry. You might try Sea to Summit Wilderness Wash if you need a concentrated biodegradeable soap for outdoor use – it works really well for washing dishes.
      As a suggestion, always have some cold water in your Folding Bucket before you add hot water – this will prevent damage.

      B

  2. Hey Baz,
    We like the folding bucket, but wish it was a folding water tank instead – i.e., maybe with a roll-top construction like a dry bag. The idea would be that the water stays contained and clean at camp, to be emptied out from the bottom with a spout. Do you have any plans of making such a thing? We’d be glad to field test it for you!
    Thanks Baz, Marie and Trevor

    1. G’Day Marie
      G’Day Trevor
      Thanks for your suggestion! The Folding Bucket has been so successful for us partly because the two models (10 L and 20 L) are so light and compact; and we’re wary about adding features which would change this.
      The Folding Buckets – with their top handle and bottom grab handle – are ideal for scooping water from a shallow water source, and once water has been carried back to camp, their free-standing capability and tall shape makes them perfect for water filtration.
      For enclosed water storage with a spout dispenser, you should check out our Pack Taps which are available in 2 L, 4 L , 6 L and 10 L sizes – I think you’ll find these work really well ‘in the field’
      Cheers
      B

  3. I’m pretty excited to check out the Specialist shelters when I get home. I assume these guys are being marketed and sold back in Oz already? Also, I’m 190cm tall so I’d be interested to know if either the Duo or the Solo would be a suitable size-option for me. They look fantastic, too, and so light!

    1. Jarrad –

      you will indeed find the Specialist Shelters on sale in good specialist shops when you get back to Oz. The length of the Solo is 213cm, the length of the Duo is 220cm – as with any shelter, we’d recommend pitching it in the store to see how well it fits you and your gear.

      Cheers

      B

  4. Do your sleeping bag liners have little thingies to attach to the inside of my sleeping bag? I hate rolling over and having the whole thing twist up.

    1. G’Day Lynn –

      We don’t put attachment points on the sides of our liners; partly because there is no standard for the spacing of attachment loops in sleeping bags.
      As a suggestion, you may care to try the Coolmax Adaptor liner : its polyester knit is so stretchy, that many sleepers find they can move freely inside the liner without the fabric becoming twisted up.

      Let me know if you’d like more details on this

      B

    1. G’Day Matt

      First of all, my apologies for the delay in replying – I was at a trade show, then out of the country for a couple of weeks.

      I’m just getting around to replying to the comments on the ‘Ask Baz’ blog.

      Your question is one we field quite often (and the short answer is that we’re an Australian company, based in Perth WA, so US manufacturing is not an option open to us).

      However, your email address indicates that you work for a technical fabric supplier – so it’s possible that your question has a different slant than those we usually receive from consumers.

      Our Design and Development department is located in Perth, but I would be happy to forward information to them if appropriate.

      Please let me know how I might assist you further

      Best regards,

  5. Hi Baz,
    I’m looking at purchasing a sleeping bag in the Sea to Summit Range but one consideration is what bag my girlfriend will use. What bags in the range share the same zipper and hence can be zipped together to form a larger combined bag for us to share? What would you recommend?
    Cheers,
    Rob

    1. Thanks for writing to us about zipping together Sea to Summit sleeping bags to form a double bag.

      Most Sea to Summit sleeping bags can be zipped together – the two bags don’t even have to be from the same series. The key point is the size (not the length) of the zipper.
      The following sleeping bags have a #5 zipper and can zipped together:
      Alpine, Traverse, Talus, Trek
      The following sleeping bags have a #3 zipper and can zipped together:
      Micro, Traveller
      (regardless of the length of the bag, the side zipper is always the same length – so you can zip a Short to a Regular or Long)

      As to which two bags would work best for you, that’s a question of the type of temperature conditions you’ll face and number of other factors including packed size, weight and price. If you’d like some recommendations, please email us at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘Zipped-together sleeping bag questions’ in the subject line.

      (Please let me know where you’re located so I can put you in touch with a local retailer)

      Cheers

      B

  6. Hello. I love your Trek & Travel shaving cream — such an easy way to travel lightly, and I get about four months’ use of the cream, which also eliminates the need to carry aerosol cans.

    I am in the USA, and I have been having a very difficult time finding your shaving cream. The stores that stock it, such as REI, have all your other products, but no shaving cream. No place in the New York City area has it, for example. There was none in Austin, TX, but it was in San Antonio. There was none in San Francisco, but it was in Belmont.

    Is this product being eliminated? Are there production problems? Should I start looking for a replacement, with the understanding that you won’t be producing it any longer?

    (One more thing: I it was extremely difficult to find the way to ask this question here — a very convoluted process of registering with your blog, rather than a simple “CONTACT” button where I could ask a customer service question.)

    1. Thanks for the question Albert. Glad to hear our Trek & Travel Shaving Cream works well for you. The product is not being eliminated. Many of our dealers stock it. Here are several online dealers who currently have it in stock:

      Eastern Mountain Sports :http://bit.ly/1yMAIFt
      Rock Creek: http://bit.ly/1HDhsAi
      REI: http://bit.ly/1r1YNsY
      We have a “Contact Us” form on our website that allows you ask questions directly to our customer service department if you prefer: http://www.seatosummit.com/contact.php
      Thanks!

    1. Hi Heath,

      Thanks for reaching out to us at Sea to Summit- We are Headquartered in Perth, Australia and all of our products are made in Asia. If you have any other questions, please let us know!

      Cheers,
      Sea to Summit Staff

  7. Hi Baz
    I absolutely love the SeaToSummit brand and am the proud owner of many of your products. Top quality, very innovative and beautifully light.
    With perhaps only one exception….the collapsible X-Pot. Or more specifically, its lid.
    i purchased this only a few months ago but the lid has now warped….after probably only 20 uses or so.
    Initially I thought this was perhaps something I had done (although I couldn’t think what), but a camping buddy I know has experienced exactly the same problem. He threw his lid out and is now using aluminium foil instead.

    Is this a problem you have noticed?
    Is there a way I can obtain a replacement lid for the orange 1.4L pot?

    Cheers
    Martin

    1. G’Day Martin

      We’re happy to know that you’ve generally had good experiences with your Sea to Summit gear – and equally sorry to learn that the lid of your X-Pot has let you down.

      We have experienced very few reports of X-Pot lids warping – and in several of the instances where this has occurred, it transpires that the end-user had secured the silicone rubber handles of the pot to the tabs on the lid during the cooking process. This locking function is designed to keep the lid on the pot (and keep any X-Mugs or X-owls ‘nested’ inside the pot from coming free) during transportation. If the lid is so secured during cooking, the stainless-steel ring embedded in the silicone rubber will expand at a different rate than the lid and cause it to warp.

      We have also received a couple of reports where a cooking utensil projecting up from the pot with hot contents has apparently resulted in warping.

      Sea to Summit keeps spare parts for every product it sells, including X-Pot lids. If you let us know where you are located (a full address including the city and country) we will have a replacement lid shipped to you (and to your camping buddy) free of charge. Please email the addresses (and pot sizes) to our info@seatosummit.com address and put ‘X-Pot – warped lid’ in the subject line.

      Apologies for the inconvenience

      B

  8. I just wanted to take an opportunity to thank the helpful staff at Sea to Summit concerning a problem that I had with one of their 20L hydraulic bags. They were quick to reply to my questions and actually cared about me as a customer. I replied back with a few pictures of the problem and they e-mailed back saying that they would replace the bag. I just received the replacement bag in the mail today. Thanks you guys. You have a customer for life.

    1. Glad to hear about your positive experience with our customer service, we always appreciate hearing from our customers. Hope you have a great day and enjoy your new Hydraulic dry bag!

      Cheers,
      Sea to Summit Staff

  9. Hi , a question about the sizing of the hydraulic dry bags. When the size is listed at 65 or 90L what does this refer to ie is this the volume of the bag closed with 3 folds?

    1. G’Day Liz

      Thanks for checking in with us about the volumes of our dry bags. The volumes of all Sea to Summit dry bags, including the Hydraulics – are measured with the roll-top rolled over three times. If you would like further details, please email us at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘dry bag sizing’ in the subject line.

      Cheers

      B

    1. G’Day Matt

      I’m not sure exactly what you mean by an ‘odour control product’ for your sleeping bag.

      If you have washed your sleeping bag using a down soap such as Nikwax Down Wash (you’ll find comprehensive instructions on how to wash a sleeping bag here: https://askbaz.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/how-do-you-wash-a-down-sleeping-bag/ ) and the bag still has an odour, it is worth spraying the liner and shell with a product called Mirazyme: https://www.gearaid.com/collections/cleaning-water-repellents/products/mirazyme?variant=28044145425. You will only need a fine mist of the diluted Mirazyme to neutralize most odours (a good tip is to put the Mirazyme in a spray bottle such as the containers in which glass cleaner is sold).

      You should be able to buy both the above products in Sweden.

      If you had a different type of product in mind, please drop us a line at info@seatosummit.com and let us know more specifically what it is you are looking for.

      Cheers
      B

  10. Hi! I am looking into purchasing the woman’s trek I sleeping bag…I brought it home from the store the other day to try out, and I love the feel of it! The only thing feel a little bit hesitant with is the 650 down fill…I was hoping to get a bag with a higher fill power (maybe 750-800)…but I would like a womans bag, as I am fairly short. I am hoping to use it for back packing trips, and and interested in a bag that is light weight, and has good compression – but still at least a 32 degree rating… Is there any benefit to having the 650 fill vs. something higher? I also brough home a bag of a different brand with 800 fill, but it seemed like the feathers with a bit clumped together which left space where there seemed to be no down. I am also still trying to understand what the fill weight means? Any thoughts? Thanks for the help!

    1. G’Day Shannon

      Thanks for your questions regarding the Women’s Trek sleeping bag.

      The Women’s bags have proved extremely popular in the short time they have been on the market, due to:
      – Their broader cut in the hips (which allows a woman to assume a ‘foetal’ or ‘figure 4’ sleeping position without compressing the down with her hips and knees)
      – The layer of Thermolite used in the bottom two baffles (like having a mini Reactor Liner for your feet).

      However, down is a fairly complicated subject, and these are relatively short answers – if you’d like more details, I’ll provide an email address below.

      – Fill power. Fill power simply describes the volume which an ounce of down will expand out to (after compression) expressed in cubic inches. So: 650 down should expand out to 650 cubic inches, 750 down to 750 cubic inches and so on. I say should, because there’s usually no way to independently verify this, and some down products clearly loft better than others which apparently have the same fill power rating. See ‘down quality’ below.
      – Is higher fill power better? Not necessarily. If weight and packed volume of a sleeping bag or jacket aren’t crucial to the end-user, a manufacturer can achieve the same warmth with 650 down as 800 down – it will just require a slightly higher fill weight.
      – Fill weight. This describes the total weight of the down filled into the sleeping bag or jacket, usually expressed in grams. If all other factors (ie down quality and the construction of the sleeping bag/jacket) are the same, the greater the fill weight, the warmer the product will be. The Women’s Trek WTk I has a fill weight of 500 grams.
      – Down quality. As mentioned above, an end-user cannot normally verify either the fill power or the purity and maturity of the down used in a product. In the case of a Sea to Summit sleeping bag, you can verify this – because the bag is supplied with a certificate from a leading independent down laboratory which details the composition of the down and its fill power.
      These factors affect the long-term performance of the down – lesser quality down products may have down which clumps up and leaves gaps in the individual down chambers (even if they have printing or embroidery which claims a high fill-power number)

      The Women’s Trek WTk I should prove to be a good choice for a woman sleeping in air temperatures down to around freezing; although please know that at these temperatures, the insulation value of a sleeping pad assumes a greater and greater importance. You will need a mat which has a (tested) R-Value of around 3 to counteract the cold from the ground. Using a Thermolite Reactor Liner in the bag to form the first layer of a ‘sleep system’ will provide the best conditions for a warm night’s sleep

      If you feel you will regularly use a sleeping bag down at temperatures around freezing, you may care to look at the Women’s Latitude WLt I as an alternative to the Trek. This bag has a few more ‘technical’ features such as an internal draft collar and a more complex hood construction – it also features a highly water-resistant shell fabric and is filled with 750+ fill power down. In fairness, the construction and materials make it a more expensive bag.

      One last thought – check the tested fill power on the certificate supplied with the Women’s Trek WTk I you brought home. Sea to Summit promises ‘650+’ fill, but frequently, this means the down used tests at over 700…

      If you would like more details, please email us at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘Women’s sl;eeping bags – follow-up questions’ in the subject line.

      Cheers

      B

  11. Hi. I have the XPot 2.8 L and I wanted to use a metal windscreen with it. I understand that fire cannot touch the silicone and that silicone should be heat resistant; however, would the windscreen get hot enough to cause a problem. Thank yuo

  12. Hi. I fish out of a packraft and I sit to low in it. I was looking for a thick inflatable seat or pillow to prop myself
    up a tad higher. Is the Aeros Premium Deluxe Pillow strong enough to sit on ? I weight about 165lbs. The bottom of the packraft give a bit which should lessen the stress on the pillow. . Also, I am not looking for any kind of floatation from this. Thanks. Mark

    1. G’Day Mark

      Thanks for your question regarding use of an Aeros Pillow as a cushion in your packraft.

      The bladder material and welds of the Aeros Premium Pillow are probably strong enough to support your upper body weight if you were to sit on one. However, the function of a pillow is to provide soft, pliable support for your head while you move during sleep, where a cushion is not designed to flex laterally very much at all – it is there to provide stability.

      To provide the comfort that a sleeper expects from a pillow, the Aeros Pillow range is made of a very elastic thermoplastic urethane film, and is covered with a soft knitted fabric. Both of these materials were chosen for comfort and for their light weight.

      In contrast, the many foam (memory foam / gel) cushions designed for use in canoes and kayaks will be made of materials intended to withstand the sharp or abrasive elements common in paddling, as well as almost constant exposure to water.

      For all of the above reasons, we would recommend a cushion of this type over the Aeros Pillow for your packraft.

      Cheers

      B

  13. Hi Baz. Is it feasible to add a 2nd thermolite reactor to a bag to further increase its warmth? Will a 2nd reactor achieve the same reduction in temperature rating as the first? Thanks.

    1. G’Day, Pete

      Thanks for your question about using a second Reactor liner to add additional warmth to a sleeping bag.

      If you have read our blog post https://askbaz.wordpress.com/2011/05/08/adding-warmth/, you will know that there are a lot of factors which influence the additional thermal performance which a liner can provide. These include how effectively your sleeping pad insulates you from the ground and how effectively the construction of your sleeping bag retains warmth. So – it’s difficult to give a specific figure for the add-on temperature you can expect from a single liner.

      Using a second Reactor would no doubt increase the amount of additional thermal performance, but it would not be twice as much as the boost from a single Reactor.

      Additionally, it is worth considering the fact that you would have added 2 x 8.7ozs / 2 x 280g. Using a Traveller or Spark sleeping bag (or the new Reactor Fleece Liner) as an inner bag would boost your original bag’s performance by more than two Reactors for less weight.

      If you would like more information on building an effective sleep system, drop us an email at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘sleep system – adding warmth’ in the subject line. Let us know what sleeping bag and sleeping pad you have and the tempertures / humidity you expect to sleep at.

      Cheers

      B

    1. G’Day Chris

      Thanks for your question. The answer is, you could use an X-Shot to bake a muffin in (the silicone rubber would not be harmed by normal backing temperatures), but it wouldn’t be a very practical muffin container:

      – It’s only 75ml / 2.5oz (most muffins are at least 150ml and more commonly 250ml these days)
      – It would be a little tricky to get the muffin out of the X-Shot once it was baked; the sides of the X-Shot are stiffer than baking shapes because they are designed to collapse. Squeezing the muffin out may cause it to collapse instead.

      So – it might come down to being more trouble than it is worth.

      If you do go ahead and bake muffins in the X-Shot, let us know how it went – shoot us an email at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘X-Shot – muffin baking’ in the subject line.

      Cheers

      B

  14. I just completed the Appalachian Trail and my Spark II down sleeping bag is in need of cleaning. How should I clean the sleeping bag and maintain the fluff of the down?
    Happy Trails,

    Tom

    1. G’Day Thomas

      First of all, congratulations on completing the Appalachian Trail!

      No doubt your Spark Sp II could use a little TLC at this point – you can find detailed instructions on how to wash the bag and preserve its loft here: https://askbaz.wordpress.com/2013/02/06/how-do-you-wash-a-down-sleeping-bag/

      The blog post is pretty thorough – if you should have any questions which the article does not answer, just shoot us an email at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘Washing a down sleeping bag’ in the subject line.

      Cheers

      B

  15. I have a seatosummit pillow that I fill 2/3rds with air when I go to bed and in the morning it is flat. I cannot find a leak. Do you have any suggestions on finding a leak and fixing it? Could it be the plug is not sealing completely?

    1. G’Day, Robert

      Sorry to learn that you’ve had issues with your Aeros Pillow not holding air.

      If air is escaping from the valve, this is very likely to be a result of the silicone insert in the valve not being seated correctly (the silicone insert is the teal blue disk visible when you open both parts of the valve).

      If the insert is the issue, it is very easy to diagnose and to resolve:

      – Inflate the pillow, leave the inflate port open (so the silicone insert is visible) then pour a small amount of water into the valve opening.
      – If the silicone insert is not seated properly, you would see bubbles coming up from within the valve. If this is the case, we would send you a replacement insert which can be installed very simply (email us at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘Aeros Pillow – Valve Insert needed’ in the subject line)

      If you conduct this test and no bubbles come from the insert, it means that the pillow is losing air from somewhere else – if this is the case, email us at info@seatosummit.com and put ‘Aeros Pillow – air loss issue’ in the subject line.

      We will need your address and details about where and when the pillow was purchased.

      My colleagues in the warranty department will be happy to assist you further

      Cheers

      Baz

  16. Hi Baz. I just bought a Spark II to use on the Camino de Santiago. staying in Albergues (Hostels) do don’t need super warmth. It seems a great bag, until I tried to fit into it. OK it’s a mummy and supposed to be tight. I’m only 5′ 7″ and not huge. It’s a bit like wearing a full body down condom 🙂 it was a real struggle to get my shoulders in and zip the bag up. (unclothed) I’d be worried if the place caught on fire, I wouldn’t be able to get out of the bag! Serious. It was a real struggle to get it zipped up and then unzip. Is there a trick to that?

    1. G’Day Rob

      Thanks for contacting us about using the Spark sleeping bag on the Camino.

      The Spark was designed to be a technical sleeping bag, so it has both a hood and a contoured footbox; but it was also intended to be as light and to have as small a packed volume as possible. As a result of these two criteria, the Spark series has both a very short zipper and a narrow mummy cut – the girth measurements at the shoulder / hips / footbox are:

      Regular

      Shoulder 146cm / 58in
      Hips 126cm / 50in
      Footbox 88cm / 35in

      (just for the sake of comparison, here are the dimensions for the Talus sleeping bag, which has a standard mummy cut):

      Regular

      Shoulder 150.5cm / 60in
      Hips 129cm / 51in
      Footbox 97cm / 39in

      So – the Spark should feel like a snug fit, without falling into the category of ‘full body condom’. I’ve checked through your blog and didn’t find any details on your body weight; for what it’s worth, I’m 173cm (5’ 8”) and 67Kg (150lbs) and I had no issues getting into or out of the Spark when I tested it.

      However – the only experience which counts is yours.

      We have recommended gear for people hiking the El Camino on many occasions, and our go-to recommendation for a sleeping bag is the Traveller Tr I:

      http://www.seatosummitusa.com/product/?item=Traveller+Tr+I&o1=0&o2=0&o3=071RL

      – It’s only a few grams heavier than the Spark
      – It will pack down to a very small size, only just larger than a Spark
      – It has a full-length zipper, so it can be opened up for ventilation / to form a quilt (duvet) / to zip to another Traveller
      – It has a drawcord at the base which can be opened for ventilation

      The dimensions of the Traveller are:

      Regular

      Shoulder 148cm / 59in
      Hips 134cm / 53in
      Footbox 98cm / 39in

      But it is also available in a Large for a few grams more:

      Large

      Shoulder 168cm / 67in
      Hips 148cm / 59in
      Footbox 118cm / 47in

      You didn’t mention where you bought the Spark. If it’s possible to return it, we really would recommend the Traveller – for all the above reasons, it’s a better bag for the Camino and (it would seem) a better bag for you.

      If you have any questions on the above, our colleagues in the Perth, WA office will be happy to assist you further – just drop them a line at enquiries@seatosummit.com.au

      And – if you would like any other gear recommendations for the Camino (for instance, UltraSil Dry Sacks which keep order in your pack and keep your gear dry), shoot us an email at info@seatosummit.com and put El Camino – gear questions in the subject line.

      Cheers

      B

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