Mar 4, 2013 at 5:48 am #1299974
So my exped synmat UL7 exploded. Sent it to exped for repairs, but I'm doubtful. It was a big explosion.
So that means I'm probably in the market for a new pad. I move around too much to deal with the crinkly thermarests, I'm terribly disappointed in the new BA reports of being too skinny, so I'm thinking of the exped downmat for the additional warmth (if I have to spend that kind of money, might as well just up it a notch, right?)
If I'm going for extra R value, does it make sense to get a short one? So many of you like the shorter pads, but I can't imagine that a 2.5 inch drop off would be easy to deal with using my pack or whatever else I can find. The sit pad of my pack would help, but is it enough??
Anyway, what's the general consensus about short inflatables?
I'm – ahem – in my 40s (a bit creaky in the am), use a quilt, and my dog is worthless for added warmth in the tent.Mar 4, 2013 at 5:54 am #1961150
Kevin SchneringerBPL Member
@slammerLocale: Oklahoma Flat Lands
First How did you Xplode the pad that way??? Wow
I have several Exped products and have never Failed one like that.
I actually have no valuable advice on short/long pad since I use longs and disregard the the extra weight for comfort.Mar 4, 2013 at 6:00 am #1961151
Five StarBPL Member
@mammomanLocale: NE AL
If you use a quilt, I'd probably go with a longer pad….less draft potential IMO. But it seems to be a matter of personal style and preference. I have found as I approach age 50 and get creakier as well, I prefer a full-length 25" wide pad. It's the thing I allow the most luxury weight for.Mar 4, 2013 at 6:13 am #1961154
There's a joke there………
Yeah, I'd love a 25" wide one, but I certainly don't need it so long; I loathe not so much the weight but the volume. I can probably go with the S 64" long pad, but I am concerned about the drafts and whatnot – if I'm spending cash and weight and volume on a higher R value pad, am I erasing all that if I went with the really short one (the XS)Mar 4, 2013 at 6:18 am #1961157
I was working on my first DIY project of a quilt attachment system and went to show it off to a friend…
It was on carpet, nothing around, and the clips are those flat buckles. I clipped in, went to roll over on the fully inflated pad, when my dog decided he was going to go after the cat on the other side of the pad. He jumped and landed with his front paws on my chest…and boom! The nylon is NOT ripstop, so there you go. $150 down the drain.
It's a good thing dogs are cute.Mar 4, 2013 at 7:14 am #1961173
"It's a good thing dogs are cute."
Indeed! He's a doll. How old?Mar 4, 2013 at 7:17 am #1961174
"Anyway, what's the general consensus about short inflatables?"
C'mon, you've been on this site long enough. There is no general consensus about much of anything!
I like my Synmat UL 7 regular (got the downmat UL as well). I've always preferred the longer pads. I only wish they made the regular length with the 25" width! But, for me, the Synmats 'feel' wider than the Thermarests.
Go with regular length, you'll be happier.Mar 4, 2013 at 7:23 am #1961176
Travis LeannaBPL Member
Well, the general consensus between me, myself, and I is that we prefer a full length pad. While Myself liked the idea of a shorter pad to save weight, Me liked less bulk, and I liked less inflation effort, we all agree that the comfort of a full length is worth it.
:)Mar 4, 2013 at 8:37 am #1961211
@stingray4540Locale: South Bay
Personally, I don't find the drop off a problem, if it is below my waist. I use the smallest neoair, and just pit my pack and any extra gear under my feet.
It might just be me, but as long as my torso is all level, I don't care if my legs are hanging off a cliff or floating in the air.
If you're concerned, try it at home first, or buy from REI.Mar 4, 2013 at 8:41 am #1961212
I've been playing around with short pads and to me it kinda matters how you sleep,side or back,how hard you like your pad and where the pad comes on your legs. You can experiment with a full length pad by varying the pressure and sliding down on the pad and trying whatever under your legs. I am a side sleeper. My latest combo is a three foot cut down synmat my head hangs over the end onto my stuff sack pillow which lays on the ground not the mat. Then I use a 3'× 22"×1/2" CCF pad that laps one foot under the syn mat and extends two feet out. I like the synmat just hard enough to keep the lowest part of me(my hip) off the ground. So my legs don't have a big drop off and I have two mats under my hip and thigh for warmth. I am totally on a pad or pillow. So now I have two baby synmats and it works for me. I really like having the CCF pad for a all around use sit pad, wind screen,fishing pole case etc and carried it even when I had one full length syn mat anyway. Also I use a bag not a quilt but think this would work OK for me with a quilt. If my inflatable ever goes flat I can use the CCF under my torso and pack under my legs. YMMV.Mar 4, 2013 at 8:55 am #1961216
Rob PBPL Member
I've heard of people altering the length of inflatable pads by cutting them and resealing the end with a hot iron. I've never done it before, it's just something I remember reading about a while ago. So conceivably you could alter one to make your own custom length downmat 25X64 pad. Maybe someone else knows if this kind of thing can work?Mar 4, 2013 at 9:10 am #1961221
Dale WambaughBPL Member
@dwambaughLocale: Pacific Northwest
Cutting a pad down is a risky effort. I've tried the exercise on use pads with damage to the lower section, so there was little to lose. Cutting a new one makes me wince.
I think a wide short pad makes sense, but evidently the marketing folk don't agree. I think the hammock crowd would be all over a wide short pad. Of course, CCF pads are easy and the leftovers are useful.
I use a short pad and carry a sit pad which I use together for sleep. Packs can work for lower legs and feet too.Mar 4, 2013 at 9:27 am #1961228
@gregfLocale: Canadian Rockies
I am comfortable with my feet sticking off a pad for about 6" or so. Any more than that and I am uncomfortable. I find that if my knees are off the pad I get a torque placed on my hips that is uncomfortable. And I find I need to have 6" below the knee on the pad or I get a torque placed on my knees. So I need to have most of my body on the pad.
So being over 6 feet tall the 72" pads work for me lenth wise with my head on the pad but I really like the width of a 25" pad so in the end I go with a neo air xlite large and just eat the extra ounces. For reference I am a side sleeping 6'3" 200lbs.
For your pad it might be fixable. since the nylon is heat sealable you might be able to get a pacth made out of heat sealable nylon at put both an inside and outside layer on. The big issue would be trying to isolate the layer and not seal the bottom to the top of the pad. There are some posts here about shortening wide neo airs that would be applicable. So if Exped says its a write off and you didnt buy it at back country or REI then it might be a fun fix it project.Mar 4, 2013 at 12:47 pm #1961309
Since I didn't get a whole lot of love for short pads, and since so many people commit the grave sin of actually – gasp – going a bit heavier for the wider pads, perhaps I should just spring for the LW downmat if the synmat is toast.
By the way, CharlieDog is 5 ish…a rescue. He's the best trail dog….I'm going to miss hiking with him on the jmt!!Mar 4, 2013 at 12:58 pm #1961319
Ike JutkowitzBPL Member
@ikeLocale: Central Michigan
I love my short inflatable xtherm. Incredible winter insulation at under 11 oz. I prop my feet on my backpack to keep them off the snow. This has provided adequate insulation down to -11F with a thinlight 1/8" foam pad. I hadn't commented originally because this is the sort of thing you'd have to try for yourself to see if it works for you. I'd second the recommendation of walking into a sporting goods store and testing it out. I did prefer the square shape of the old neoair over the tapered mummy shape as it made it easier to stay on the pad, but I make it work for me by tucking the "foot" end of the pad into the mouth of my backpad to keep them together.
IkeMar 4, 2013 at 1:42 pm #1961340
Walter CarringtonBPL Member
I'm 5'8" and have used short, 48", pads for years. My current pad is a short older neoair pad (48") and it's fine for me. Generally I use clothes, pack, etc., as a pillow with perhaps just my feet hanging over the bottom end. For winter I'd want a longer pad, or more likely, a full length foam pad underneath the air mattress.Mar 4, 2013 at 1:50 pm #1961345
Jeffs ElevenBPL Member
Neo short and pack under legs works for me. Only problem is when your pack is soaked from rain.
(foam on TOP of pad in winter for me though. Its never cold to the touch since no air is in it)Mar 4, 2013 at 1:59 pm #1961350
There's also the Medium All Season or the Xlite Women's at 66". I find the Neo Air All Season less crinkly then the XLite (I have both in LW).
-Mark in St. LouisMar 4, 2013 at 2:30 pm #1961368
Richard LyonBPL Member
@richardglyonLocale: Bridger Mountains
For years I've used a short pad, primarily for less bulk, not less weight. Then last summer and fall I tested the BA Q Core, then available only in regular length. It spoiled me, really keeping me much warmer. So I'm no help on your question. I do have a handsome rescue dog, however.Mar 4, 2013 at 3:47 pm #1961409
Wow do I hate decisions.
So it's either a small 64" long version that will save quite a few ounces and a bit of bulk, or the LW and just live in the lap of luxury, but for about an 8 oz penalty.
My guess is that I'd probably be quite happy with the 64" (which is cheaper anyway…). I'm 67" tall, so should be just fine, right?? I'm seriously going to ask exped why they don't make a 64" wide. Now THAT would be an awesome pad. I really want the extra width, but just so don't need the extra length.
And in that note: Dave, BG, Doug…the rest of you chaffers, you know who you are…keep it clean. :)
Nice puppy!!!!Mar 4, 2013 at 3:51 pm #1961414
@gregfLocale: Canadian Rockies
Given your height I think you would be fine on the 64" pad. With your head on the pad just your feet would hang off. The extra width is where you need to make the decisionMar 5, 2013 at 4:07 pm #1961841
Steven McAllisterBPL Member
@brooklynkayakLocale: South West US
I personally love the torso length wide NeoAir Trekker.
It doesn't crinkle, it is wide enough that my whole upper body is on the pad. So no cold arms when I'm sleeping on my back. It is super comfy.
I supplement with a piece of closed cell foam for insulation under my legs. The closed cell foam also acts as my pack frame. I usually go with 1/8" to 3/8" thick depending on the climate.Mar 5, 2013 at 6:34 pm #1961901
Mike WBPL Member
@skopeoLocale: British Columbia
I use a NeoAir short pad and a sit pad for my feet. I used a Prolite short pad before that (both pads are 48" x 20").
I have never had an issue with my legs hanging off the end as the transition is pretty smooth (your legs sink down into the inflatable so it's not a 3" drop).
I also have a NeoAir large but I have rarely used it as the extra comfort of this large pad isn't significant enough to make me want to carry the extra weight and bulk.
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