We developed the quilt design for our outings, and developed the kits in the early 2000s at our gear sewing classes. Several students made them, and each turned out fabulous. Since then we have changed the assembly methods several times until arriving at what we now feel is the best.
The Ray-Way Quilt Kit comes in two models
Pg 4: Contents of our Quilt Kit
Each model's Kit contains the following items:
Each Quilt Kit contains a full set of illustrated instructions, written by us, Ray and Jenny. These instructions guide you through the cutting and sewing process, step by step. Literally thousands of people have completed our Quilt Kits, and most of them had no sewing experience. The key to success is to read our instructions carefully, and to proceed one step at a time.
Note: People with no sewing experience have shown the highest rate of success, approaching 100%. This is because they tend to read the instructions more carefully. Virtually the only people who have problems are the ones who try to figure things out ahead of the step they are actually working on. That is not reading and following the instructions. For the best results, we recommend reading only one step at a time, and concentrating on only that step; then once that step is completed, moving on to the next step.
There is another small (tiny) group of people who have demonstrated an inability to compete our kits: the professional seamstress; people who sew garments for a living. They can't seem to sew our kits for the same reason: they don't feel obliged to read the instructions.
People new to sewing are our best customers, because they read the instructions very carefully, and so have the highest success rate - almost 100%.
1.1 oz Light
Note: All nylon and polyester fabrics are flammable and must be kept away from an open flame or other extremely hot objects. We do not use fabrics containing fire-retardant chemicals because these chemicals can pose an even greater health hazard.
Our Quilt fabric colors are shown on our Order Form
Our quilt kits come with a type of continuous filament Polyester that we feel offers the highest performance of any synthetic insulation available today. We use this type of insulation on all our trips because we feel it is the best available anywhere, at any price.
We keep current of the latest developments, and we demand only the very best insulation for our trips. We have to, because we have been on some very demanding trips! And when you buy a Ray-Way Quilt Kit you take advantage of our research and experience, and get the same insulation that we use.
We offer this insulation in a choice of two thickness:
Our Woodland insulation is about 5/8" thick, per layer. Our basic kits come with two layers of Woodland, for a temperature rating of about 50°F. This is the amount of insulation usually required by most people camping in the summertime in fairly warm climes, well below timberline.
Note: You can boot the temperature rating of any quilt by a wide margin, by sleeping in warm clothing.
A person might use only one layer of Woodland when camping in even warmer climates such as along the Appalachian Trail in the height of summer. One layer of Woodland would have a temperature rating of 75°F, and would of course be even lighter and less bulky.
See page 16
for more information about temperature rating.
Note also that it's very difficult for a manufacturer to make thin sheets of ultra-light insulation with any accuracy in thickness. So our figures are only estimates, and they tend to be conservative.
we recommend our thicker "Alpine insulation" for use in colder temperatures, for example in the mountains of the West.
Our Alpine insulation is about 0.85" thick, per layer. Some call it one-inch thick, but here again we like to be conservative.
"far more important than weight, in our opinion, is that you sleep warmly
. In fact, we can't emphasize this enough. Regardless of your quest for backpack weight reduction, you must insure that you sleep warmly at night."
Two layers of Alpine insulation would give a temperature rating of 32°F.
A single layer of Alpine would be rated at 66°F.
Switching from Woodland to Alpine would increase the weight of a two-layer 1P quilt by 6.2% and the bulk by 15%, giving a luxurious 1.8 inches of lofty warmth and lowering the quilt's temperature rating from 50°F down to 28°F with no additional sewing or basting required.
We use quilts having two layers of Alpine insulation on most of our trips, and so do most of our customers.
In extreme cases, we offer the Xtra-Layer
Of course a Quilt with the Alpine insulation will be slightly heaver than a quilt with Woodland, but far more important than weight, in our opinion, is that you sleep warmly
. In fact, we can't emphasize this enough. Regardless of your quest for backpack weight reduction, you must insure that you sleep warmly at night. And the good news is that even our thickest quilts are significantly lighter than sleeping bags of the equivalent thickness of insulation.
Our Xtra-Layer option contains 1 layer of Woodland insulation, and adds a third layer of Woodland insulation to our 2-layer quilt kit. works with either a 1P or 2P quilt kit. Boosts the temperature rating of a two-layer Alpine quilt down to 15°F. Not included with the quilt kit but can be ordered separately. The directions for adding the Extra Layer are in the Quilt Kit Instructions. Some extra sewing required.
We don't necessarily recommend Xtra-Layer because it makes a large, heavy quilt that is not likely to fit our ray-way Stowbag, or even a small backpack. We have used the third layer only once, during Siku Kayaking trip to the Arctic; when we had plenty of carrying space in our boat.
|In Antarctica, for example, we used a 2P quilt two-layers of Alpine insulation. Our method for sleeping warm during cold nights, without the third layer of insulation, is explained in our book Trail Life. Basically, we sleep in more clothing at night, to add to the two-layers of insulation in the quilt. We have found that this works quite well. A person is carrying the warm clothing in cold conditions anyway, so why not sleep in it also? We have found that it doesn't take all that much clothing to sleep warm under a two-layer Alpine quilt.|
Note 1) To learn how to measure the thickness of this insulation properly, see Trail Life
page 82. Or page 16
. To avoid false readings, do not measure the thickness of the insulation on an edge. Take your measurements away from the edges.
Note 2) Sometimes a newly made quilt may be a little stiff, such that gravity may not drape the quilt around you as effectively, particularly with the Xtra Layer because the extra insulation tends to stiffen the quilt somewhat. Once you have used the quilt a few times it will loosen up. Meanwhile, you can simply tuck the draft stopper under you along both sides.
Note 3) We do not recommend goose down because it is useless when wet, and also extremely difficult to dry. More info on goose down
Note: Our Quilt Kits come with black quilting yarn. See the photo below for an example. Different color yarns are available at reasonable cost at various department stores. Look for acrylic worsted medium. We think the black looks best, but to each his or her own.
A two-person quilt with a split-zip. Sewn by Bruce and Terri R.
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