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Old 10-23-2016, 07:23 PM
Deep_Six Deep_Six is offline
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Hey all,

I've only used two bivy bags - one in the Canadian Forces, and one in my civilian life. My CF one was my favourite piece of kit. It was very simple; just bag with a drawstring, goretex, and never leaked. The one I have now is US Army one. While more sophisticated than the CF version, the zipper leaks at the bottom of the seam, and I can't seem able to stop it. I haven't had much of a problem to date (except one unfortunate incident), but I know that if I ever end up in another real downpour, I may be soaked.

Unless you have some advice on how to stop the leak issue, I'd love to hear a recommendation for a bivy bag that is:

-Waterproof and breathable
-Cammo
-Light-weight
-Simple system (preferably no zippers)

Anyone have some advice? I've been looking for a CF one, but haven't been fortunate so far.
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Old 10-23-2016, 09:21 PM
Supermag Supermag is offline
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I've heard great things about the outdoor research bivys
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Old 10-24-2016, 10:51 AM
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Why does it have to be cammo?
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Old 10-24-2016, 01:29 PM
souldier66 souldier66 is offline
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MMSS Bivy, you can usually find them for pretty cheap govt surplus. Get the whole system for $100. Bivy is a little on the heavy side, but it will fit 3 of your four requirements. Camo, buttons or zipper, waterproof, I think it's around 2-3 lbs.

It's the only Bivy I've ever used.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/like/2221326...&ul_noapp=true

Edit: Sorry, just realized you already used this one.
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Old 10-24-2016, 01:38 PM
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It's not camouflage and it does have zippers, however it is waterproof and breathable and very light (7oz):

http://katabaticgear.com/shop/bristlecone-bivy/
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Old 10-24-2016, 01:56 PM
DadeMurphy DadeMurphy is offline
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Wish I could help. I've never found a bivy that was worth a squirt. They all are really good at sealing in moisture and are terrible in the cold.

Long-distance bike races I now use one of those SOL EscapeLite bags. If the bugs are bad, I carry a 3x3 piece of no-see-um and put a twig up to keep it off my face. Together I think they are in the 6oz range.
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Old 10-24-2016, 02:15 PM
IC_Rafe IC_Rafe is offline
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Unless you're sleeping using only the bivy, waterproof isn't really needed. Water resistant does it's job aslong as you use something like a tarp, and choose your camping spot well. Just because you're using a bivy, doesn't mean you should throw it down into a mud puddle in the middle of the rain runoff and go to sleep in that . (Also, getting into a bivy only when it's raining, seems like a great way to just get a miserable night. No way to strip down into something dry, sleeping bag wet etc, and sleeping with your head inside makes for terrible condensation and the risk of suffocation if it's not breathable enough due to things like wet outside, mud outside.)

I just use the British military bivy (was cheap), but am looking at the RAB alpine bivy (more breathable, lighter, more compact, but more expensive. Still need to see one in person before i make the purchase though, since i do have some small concerns about the size).
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Old 10-24-2016, 02:17 PM
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I think you should make your own out of Gore-Tex. I would make it big enough I could be in it and not be touching it. 2 (2 or 3 sections) hoops and 2 stakes. Velcro. Large overlap flap at opening to keep water out. Good zippers last a long time.
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Old 10-24-2016, 02:55 PM
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I have an Integral Designs Chrysalis bivy in woodland camo. It has an eVent upper and nylon lower, zips up with a rain flap over the zip, a bug net and an unusual "breath pipe" to vent condensation.
I haven't used it in heavy rain without a tarp, but light showers have never been a problem.
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Old 10-24-2016, 03:45 PM
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Slumberjack Contour Bivy; ~$99; 1 lb 6 oz

https://slumberjack.com/contour-bivy-2/

I've used the US Military MSS Goretex bivy for decades. Both in military service and for my own outdoor adventures. I own several. I've sat out drenching all-nighters in the open (no overhead tent or tarp) and stayed completely dry. Never had a zipper seam leak, especially as the zipper is covered by the turned down integral storm flap. However... if yours is leaking, the original seam's waterproofing may be worn out (or the waterproof fabric is worn through). I'd procure a small bottle of inexpensive liquid or spray seam sealer and re-coat that seam. No different than re-treating tent seams or rain jacket tape seams. Probably also good time to re-seal the seam between the upper and lower fabric of the bivy. Depending upon brand chosen, shouldn't cost you more than $10 to do the job:

https://www.walmart.com/ip/Coleman-2...ealer/13848651
https://www.rei.com/search.html?q=se...sealers&page=1
https://www.amazon.com/Texsport-Wate.../dp/B000M7RRU2
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Old 10-24-2016, 08:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deep_Six View Post
Hey all,

I've only used two bivy bags - one in the Canadian Forces, and one in my civilian life. My CF one was my favourite piece of kit. It was very simple; just bag with a drawstring, goretex, and never leaked. The one I have now is US Army one. While more sophisticated than the CF version, the zipper leaks at the bottom of the seam, and I can't seem able to stop it. I haven't had much of a problem to date (except one unfortunate incident), but I know that if I ever end up in another real downpour, I may be soaked.

Unless you have some advice on how to stop the leak issue, I'd love to hear a recommendation for a bivy bag that is:

-Waterproof and breathable
-Cammo
-Light-weight
-Simple system (preferably no zippers)

Anyone have some advice? I've been looking for a CF one, but haven't been fortunate so far.
The British Army bivy bag is called an "MTP Sleeping bag cover" and fits your criteria.

http://www.ebay.ca/sch/i.html?_from=...cover&_sacat=0

I have used them and they are very simple, effective and durable. The material used is also very quiet (ie doesn't make rubbing noises when you move around).
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Old 10-24-2016, 08:50 PM
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Ultra light wieght hiking i use this
http://www.zpacks.com/shelter/bivy.shtml


for durable and non wieght issues i use MSS bivy
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Old 10-25-2016, 09:50 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IC_Rafe View Post
Unless you're sleeping using only the bivy, waterproof isn't really needed. Water resistant does it's job aslong as you use something like a tarp, and choose your camping spot well. Just because you're using a bivy, doesn't mean you should throw it down into a mud puddle in the middle of the rain runoff and go to sleep in that . (Also, getting into a bivy only when it's raining, seems like a great way to just get a miserable night. No way to strip down into something dry, sleeping bag wet etc, and sleeping with your head inside makes for terrible condensation and the risk of suffocation if it's not breathable enough due to things like wet outside, mud outside.)
I've spent a few nights in the MSS bivy on field exercises. What I've learned is that I will always have a poncho or tarp in conjunction with a bivy; nothing sucks more than trying to get inside your bivy and bag when it's muddy and raining! I also have small sit-pad to assist in getting in and out without tracking mud into your sleeping bag. A waterproof bivy doesn't mean you still neglect proper site selection; avoiding depressions or in the path of run-off, etc.

A larger bag does help to change clothes, but I'll need to practice more yoga before I'll ever be proficient. My lightest Bivy is a Titanium Goat, Ptarmigan bivy which weighs 6.5 ounces. With the light-weight bivy bags, I still use some form of footprint or ground cover...just the fear of a tear or puncture has me packing a narrow piece of tyvek as an extra precaution.

I guess if I was in a location where there were less chances of rain and it was mostly dry and cooler, I would use a bivy more. The biggest issue I deal with is high humidity and a lot of condensation.

ROCK6
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Old 10-27-2016, 10:11 PM
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Thanks for all the suggestions, everyone!
-I want it cammo because I guerrilla camp sometimes
-I do sometimes use it with a tarp, but in general not, and I'm okay now at wriggling from my poncho into the bivy without getting things too wet.

Astronomy, thank you for the recommendations vis-a-vis sealing the zipper. Unfortunately, the leak seems to actually be at the bottom of the zipper. The zipper itself leaves a little hole at the bottom between the two interlocking edges. Maybe I'll be able to take a photo and post it.

I'll probably make a vanity post if I get the new bivy. I'll try to deal with this one first.
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Old 10-27-2016, 10:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deep_Six View Post
Unfortunately, the leak seems to actually be at the bottom of the zipper. The zipper itself leaves a little hole at the bottom between the two interlocking edges.
Get some silicon sealant, like Amazing GOOP, or just Permatex. Squirt in on, work it in, smear it all over that area nice and smooth. It will be sealed. You won't be able to unzip all the way...but do we ever do that anyway?
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Old 10-29-2016, 10:20 AM
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Hey,

I agree with you about the Canadian Forces Envelope style Bivy's....an great piece of kit......

Now, I own one of my own...I have also seen them available for sale.........both in Cadpat as well as the slightly earlier O.D green......

I would try HERO Surplus in Oshawa Ontario http://www.herooutdoors.com/canadian...bivy-bag-used/

and SAS ( Smith's Army Surplus) in Kingston Ontario http://sasonline.ca/

( I know that SAS sells full CF issue sleep systems...liner, hood, both bags etc)...likely they have Bivy;s as well.....

Failing that.....try and snag one of the British Issue Bivy's.......they are also an Envelope style and almost exactly like our CF ones.....they are available in DPM camo and the new British MTP ( multicam ) https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...y-1095830.html

.......they are available on line ( ebay) as well as many British Surplus stores.....( shipping seems to be the biggest issue...expensive as hell) https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...ue-416349.html

The Dutch hooped Bivy is also a hell of a good choice as well.....allows for full coverage...keeps the bivy up and away from your head...comes in Dutch DPM.....and where made by Corinthian I believe......from all my research into them...very well recommended....https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...ry-739298.html


Good luck in finding what you want........

NOTE: I am in NO WAY associated with any of those stores / links......other than having had been a customer at some point......
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Old 10-29-2016, 11:01 AM
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Originally Posted by Armoured Recon 89 View Post
Hey,


The Dutch hooped Bivy is also a hell of a good choice as well.....allows for full coverage...keeps the bivy up and away from your head...comes in Dutch DPM.....and where made by Corinthian I believe......from all my research into them...very well recommended....https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...ry-739298.html
Carinthia actually . They make good gear. Very expensive though if you buy it new. Hooped bivy's have the problem imo that they are meant to be used as small tents, but you just don't have any room to do anything. Tarp and bivy is a much better option (again, imo).
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Old 10-29-2016, 12:56 PM
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Originally Posted by IC_Rafe View Post
Carinthia actually . They make good gear. Very expensive though if you buy it new. Hooped bivy's have the problem imo that they are meant to be used as small tents, but you just don't have any room to do anything. Tarp and bivy is a much better option (again, imo).
I agree.......many seem to use the hooped Bivi';s as small tents.....which leaves you with little to no room for your kit etc......

one thing I do like with them is that you can zip it up...especially if you;ve fitted in some No See Um screening and maintain a relatively bug free space and allow for good ventilation as well....THAT is the one draw back I found with the envelope style Bivi's....that IF you don;t figure out a way to keep the screen up off yourself it;s pointless...lol

again it all depends on the person using it....AND their location....some areas are very wet and lots of rainfall compared to others, some very buggy...some more dry and cool....

what works for YOU is what is best ....for YOU

but having a tarp or poncho is never a bad thing.....

cheers...
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Old 10-29-2016, 07:18 PM
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A bivy can be used in addition to a tent in very cold environments, to preserve heat in your sleeping bag. Oversized bivy is a good idea to avoid from compressing the loft of the down bags. You can actually make one from Tyvek but I have no idea personally how good or bad they are in the field. Mine is an MSS which is durable but heavy. If you have the money, UL bivys such a those made by Mountain Laurel Designs and Borah Gear cuben fiber bivys are excellent.
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Old 10-29-2016, 07:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Armoured Recon 89 View Post
Hey,

I agree with you about the Canadian Forces Envelope style Bivy's....an great piece of kit......

Now, I own one of my own...I have also seen them available for sale.........both in Cadpat as well as the slightly earlier O.D green......

I would try HERO Surplus in Oshawa Ontario http://www.herooutdoors.com/canadian...bivy-bag-used/

and SAS ( Smith's Army Surplus) in Kingston Ontario http://sasonline.ca/

( I know that SAS sells full CF issue sleep systems...liner, hood, both bags etc)...likely they have Bivy;s as well.....

Failing that.....try and snag one of the British Issue Bivy's.......they are also an Envelope style and almost exactly like our CF ones.....they are available in DPM camo and the new British MTP ( multicam ) https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...y-1095830.html

.......they are available on line ( ebay) as well as many British Surplus stores.....( shipping seems to be the biggest issue...expensive as hell) https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...ue-416349.html

The Dutch hooped Bivy is also a hell of a good choice as well.....allows for full coverage...keeps the bivy up and away from your head...comes in Dutch DPM.....and where made by Corinthian I believe......from all my research into them...very well recommended....https://www.surplusandoutdoors.com/s...ry-739298.html


Good luck in finding what you want........

NOTE: I am in NO WAY associated with any of those stores / links......other than having had been a customer at some point......
Thanks for posting the links, gave me some new places to look at!
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