Any experienced outdoor enthusiast will tell you that it is vital to sleep well – you need to wake refreshed and ready for the next adventure. This is why it is unwise to economise when it comes to your sleeping bag and camping mat. And why it is equally important to look after your investment. Our experts provide some help.
Types of sleeping bags
Mummy Tapered bag with close fitting insulated hood that reduces the amount of body heat required to warm trapped air and all forms of heat loss.
Envelope Oblong shaped sleeping bag enables free movement at night for extra sleep comfort.
Shark-fin foot box This is a special profile that allows your feet to comfortably rest in a natural unrestricted position.
Differentiated drawcords Quickly isolate your head and shoulder closing the hood with two draw cords, one cord in the hood and one that across the bag, so you can close the hood exactly as you prefer.
- Micro polyester
- Nylon taffeta
- Micro polyester pongee
||Single layer – A single layer of insulation is sandwiched between inner and outer fabrics with stitching running straight through, compressing the insulation along the thread line. This is a very common method for keeping insulation material in place for lightweight bags. Subsequent loss of insulation at these points is addressed through the use of a loose outer thus avoiding cold spots in the bag. The Single layer construction method is used in our Far Away, Trailhead 1000 and Killarney bags.
Double layer – This is our preferred method for synthetic fillings at Robens, when more filling is needed to create a warmer sleeping bag. Two insulating layers are used together with the quilting pattern offset to eliminate cold spots by maintaining the depth of insulation throughout. The double layer construction is used in our Trailhead range (apart from trailhead 1000)
Box wall – Down needs room to loft fully and maximize its insulation potential. The internal box walls are sewn to the inner and outer to create chambers to hold the down in place around your body and offer enough space for the down to loft fully after compression for optimum insulation. The box wall construction is used in our Caucasus, Killarney Down, Pamir 500 and 750 sleeping bags.
Shingle – Angled layers of sheet insulation overlap each other like tiles on a roof, to prevent cold spots by providing secure positioning and uniform loft. The Shingle layer is used in the Carpathian sleeping bags
YKK Auto lock – YKK has a worldwide reputation for manufacturing high quality zips. Its Auto Lock stops the zip from moving from a desired position unless physically moved.
Two way – The zip opens from the top for easy access and from the bottom to help control temperature around the feet.
L-shape – The zip runs down the body and around the feet so it can be fully opened and used as a duvet.
Half-length centre – Optimum position of the zip for easy access and sleep comfort.
Robens sleeping bags are tested to the relevant section of European Standard EN13537. To determine temperature limits of sleeping bags objectively, the European Standard EN13537 on requirements for sleeping bags specifies the use of a computer-controlled thermal manikin similar in shape and size to the human body.
A sleeping bag containing a manikin is placed inside a temperature-controlled climate chamber and tested in accordance with a prescribed procedure to determine the thermal insulation properties of the bag. Recommended temperature limits are based on the insulation properties measured and on knowledge of how the human body reacts to thermal conditions during sleep.
On each of our sleeping bags we quote the recommended temperature ratings for the following:
Tcomfort – lower comfort limit in standard use (woman)
Tlimit – lower limit when curled up in standard use (man)
Textreme – lowest extreme temperature for survival (woman)
Tmax – upper comfort limit without over heating (man)
Robens season ratings make selecting the correct sleeping bag easier.
1 season: For use in the summer months only
2 seasons: For use from late spring through to early autumn
3 seasons: For use from spring right through autumn
3-4 seasons: For use throughout all seasons but more suited to colder conditions
Sleeping bag Care
Modern, high-performance sleeping bags come with high-quality materials and designs that offer maximum insulation and comfort for minimal weight and pack size. Our care tips will help you get the best performance.
Any experienced outdoor enthusiast will tell you that it is vital to sleep well –you need to wake refreshed and ready for the next adventure. This is why it is unwise to economise when it comes to your sleeping bag and camping mat. And why it is equally important to look after your investment. Our experts provide some help.
- Moisture degrades material and saps body heat so air daily as soon as possible after use.
- Always pack away your sleeping bag by stuffing it into its pack sack. It makes it easier to pull out later and preserves the integrity of the insulation.
- Always take your sleeping bag out of its bag as soon possible after pitching for the night to allow the maximum amount of time for the insulation to loft before use. Down fillings recover rapidly from compression, but some synthetic fillings take a long time to become plump and fluffy enough to provide an insulating layer of trapped warm air between your body and the cold.
- Use a closed-cell foam mat or self-inflating mat under a sleeping bag to insulate you from the cold, hard ground.
- A liner will help keep a sleeping bag clean and add to its thermal performance. Liners are quickly washed and dried even in the field and can be used on their own on warm nights.
Always try to air a sleeping bag daily after use to remove body moisture that saps heat, degrades the material and provides a breeding ground for mould and microbes.
Remove small amounts of dirt from the outer with warm water and a soft cloth and after 40-50 nights completely wash a sleeping bag to remove ingrained dirt and restore its loft. Never dry clean a sleeping bag.
- If you cannot obtain a specialist liquid soap for sleeping bags then use a mild detergent – 1/3 of the normal amount and no fabric softener.
- Wash the sleeping bag in a sufficiently large washing machine – for best results use one with a 7kg drum.
- Except where otherwise recommended, use a 30°C wash for wool or delicates, but always obey the manufacturer’s recommendation.
- Rinse the sleeping bag repeatedly until no more foam emerges and then spin-dry it very briefly and carefully remove from the machine. Don’t pull it out, just lift. Carry it carefully while it is wet.
- You can wash a sleeping bag in the bath filled with lukewarm water and add a liquid detergent designed for sleeping bags.
- Make sure the zip of the sleeping bag is closed. Immerse in the soapy water and let it soak for an hour. Periodically gently agitate the bag to help remove dirt.
- Rinse thoroughly several times, drain, and squeeze the sleeping bag gently. On no account wring it out!
- Finally, carefully take the sleeping bag to the drying area. This is best done by placing it in a washing basket or similar because the weight of the wet down and synthetic fibres can damage a sleeping bag’s seams and baffles.
Drying synthetic fill sleeping bags
Make sure the zip is fully closed and ideally dry in a tumble dryer at 30-40°C. If no dryer is available, open up the sleeping bag and hang it over a clothes horse, in this case drying can be expected to take about 24 hours. Sleeping-bags must be completely dry before you put them away.
Drying a down sleeping bag
As with the synthetic fill ideally dry at 30°C in a large 7kg-capacity tumble dryer. Add a couple of dryer balls (tennis balls or a clean trainer) to help prevent the down from clumping.
Alternatively, lay your down sleeping bag over a drying rack in the open air. Do not hang – the weight of wet clumps of down might damage the sleeping bag’s seams and baffles. Squeeze out lumps every 30 minutes. After three to four hours you will be able to break up the lumps with your hands.
It will take several days for the bag to dry completely. During this time, occasionally give it a good shake. Make sure your sleeping-bag is 100 per cent dry before you put it away.
A sleeping bag in long term storage should be placed loose in a large cloth bag, like an old pillowcase, and hung in a dry place. Many down sleeping bags come with a separate storage sack as well as the compression sack.
Loss of down and feathers
Sleeping bag fabrics are permeable to ensure an optimal sleeping environment, but this allows smaller feathers to work their way out. Never pull out feathers that poke through a sleeping bag cover. Feathers are interlinked – pull one out and others will follow. Plus, you will also enlarge the hole in the fabric. Instead, pull an escaping feather back into the bag from the other side. The small hole will then close as the threads rub together and reposition themselves. You can speed up this process by massaging or rubbing the fabric around the hole.
NOTE: Loss of down or feathers does not imply that the sleeping bag fabric is defective or in any way inferior.