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06/01/2021 02:45PM  
I just finished my first down quilt, which I made using karo step baffles as can be seen on many Youtube videos. It turned out to be 79 inches long and 53 inches wide (was aiming for a little more, but must have rolled the seams a bit more than I thought). Quilt weight is a meager 14oz, of which 6 oz is down.

I made the inside in a dark, "deep purple" and the outside in a lighter purple. I like the dark colors for down on at least one side for two reasons; 1-to help minimize any dirt picked up while on the trip, and 2-dark colors will absorb sunlight better if it needs to dry.

I realized I would need just over 2 yards of each color, but then came up with the idea to just get 2 of the lighter and 3 of the darker, and add some of the darker to the outside. Aside from saving me a whole $6.00 or so, it makes it really easy in my tent to determine which side is the head side and which is the foot side (as well as up and down). There is a draw string at the bottom and two clips a little further up to help close it around my knees if needed.

I only added 6 oz of 800 duck down. I might have gone a little more (and may still), but did not want a full 9 oz as I thought it would be too warm for my purpose. I was aiming for about 1 to 1.5 inches of loft thinking that I could either use it alone on warm summer evenings, or paired with my 35ºF bag which is really only comfortable down to about 45 or so. As you can see from the photo with the quilt quadruple folded, its about 5-6 inches so just about 1.25 or so inches, though the down is still being shifted around a bit.

I was very pleased with the way I managed to get the down inside, and feel I got about 99.5% of it in. Many DIY sites talk about losing 10-20%, and I had no such issue. Like many others, I used my bathtub. Hours before I cleaned it all and removed any soaps, bottles, etc so the was no where for fleeing down to hide. I also hung a rod (literally the top of my spinning rod) from two cords, then used 5 clothes pins to secure the top of my quilt. My quilt is 5 "compartments" wide, and I sewed the outer 1.5 of them closed, leaving less space to insert but less space for down to escape. Lastly I used some no-see-um mesh to cover the end of my vacuum which has a variable speed and closed the bathroom door to minimize air currents. After stuffing in as much as I could, I used the vacuum to slowly collect escaping down bit by bit, and gradually go nearly all of it in there. I used the clothes pins to hold the top shut while I ran back to my sewing machine. I should have photographed or video'd this process. Once closed up, I probably worked for 1-2 hours to reposition the down through the baffles.

I think there were 35 total strips of no-see-um mesh to sew in for baffles, and that was tedious but manageable. Otherwise, I am please with the way it turned out.





 
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06/01/2021 04:52PM  
Excellent. Just excellent.

Looks very high quality - love the weight! When does it get its test run?
 
06/01/2021 05:23PM  
sns: "Excellent. Just excellent.

Looks very high quality - love the weight! When does it get its test run?"


Thanks. With any luck, it will be within 2 weeks. I really like the idea of two lightweight covers that can be combined into one fairly warm one.

BTW, I could have gone with a .66 oz material vs the 1.0 oz material I used, but since I paddle with dogs I thought the extra durability was important.
 
Grandma L
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06/06/2021 01:23PM  
Great work! Nice to see the pictures!
 
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