An insulator for cold weather
Alpha Version





Looking for a way to make an insulating second skin for the hammock, I combined the overall fit of Ed Speer's Pea Pod bag and the Garlington Insulator.  This lightweight bag is a single layer of 1.1 oz ripstop.  It is buttoned at the head end and closes with a zipper over the whole hammock.  Extra insulation can be added in the TravelPod, such as dry leaves, clothing, or an empty pack.  The wind can not easily spill the warm air out of the dead space under the hammock

TravelPod Beta Version

The beta version of the travel pod has more room for my shoulders and a better zipper arrangement. The zipper separates at the foot end and buttons close the TravelPod at the head end.  Clearly visible in the picture above is part of the insulation under me and my quilt on top of me.

The side view of the TravelPod shows that no extra cloth is used.  The bumps pushing out on the sides of the hammock are WindBumpers, described on another page.  You may be able to see how the WindBumpers create an air space between the hammock and the TravelPod for the essential four central feet of the hammock.  It may also be clear that the TravelPod is something one is inside of!  For sleeping in cold weather, a slit about 4 inches long is left open over my head.  

Coming out the ends of the Travel pod on each end are two suspension cords.  These are threaded through two tunnels that are four feet long and parallel to, a foot away from the zipper.  The tunnel is in the central four feet of the TravelPod. They are tied at each end and a larger cord is used to draw tension on the strings and tie it off to a tab on the suspension webbing of the hammock.  

Some advantages of this bag are:

To make a travel pod, the sewing is not complex.  One requires 3 yards of 1.1 oz ripstop 64 inches wide.  The cloth is cut in the following manner:

I mark the pieces with a red marker and then cut the lines with a red hot knife heated with the propane torch.  

The "curved edges" are actually made up of four straight cuts on the large piece.  The distances are clearly shown on the pattern.  To the central portion of the bottom, an insert is sewn to increase the girth of the Travel Pod.  It is the small piece seen below the other pieces.

The long straight edges are hemmed by turning them over a half inch and running a seam.  Then, the zipper is sewn to the long edges.  Finally, four button holes are added at the head end (to the left in the pattern) on either side of the zipper to allow partial closure of the travel pod toward the tree from my head, even when the zipper is only pulled up to my neck or chest.  These could be replaced with velcro if buttons are difficult for you or your seamstress.  

Finally, a half inch tube is sewn so that it opens on the inside of the travel pod for the central four feet of the pod.  The tube is parallel to the zipper and a foot away.  Through each of these is threaded a strong cord to suspend the weight of any insulation when the travel pod is open on top.  

If you are already comfortable with your sewing machine, the cutting takes about an hour and the sewing takes an hour or two.  If you make the project, I'd love to know how it worked for you.


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