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Thread: The Ian Dent-Willoughby Cocoon

  1. #1
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    Default The Ian Dent-Willoughby Cocoon

    Ian asked me to trial his new invention and report back to him with my findings, he asked me to be as critical as I could so we could resolve any issues or faults. Well here is my honest opinion on this item.

    As per the hammock under blankets and quilts the Cocoon is another invention and design of Ian Dent-Willoughby. Again it has been made by SnugPak to a very high quality standard using their latest lightweight but very insulating materials and contains a thermal reflective layer too.

    The Cocoon is designed to be used in cold weather to keep hammock dwellers warm, it basically goes over your hammock to form an all round layer of insulation. (Ian will be posting some pictures I have sent him after this review).

    The set up is very simple indeed, there is a head end and foot end, the head end is wider giving you more space at the shoulders and chest whilst being narrower at the foot to help keep those little piggies warm. You simply slide your hammock through the openings at either end of the cocoon and rig it up as you normally would. I set my hammock up first then unclip the hammock at the carabineers to slide the cocoon over.

    The cocoon has a full length double sided zip so you can have easy access and it is easy to open and close from the inside. Once in you simply zip up the cocoon either all the way or just up to your face, the choice is yours, lie back and enjoy the warmth. After testing it a couple of times I found it beneficial to run an additional guy line through the cocoon, this was for a couple of reasons.

    One, it lifts the cocoon away from your face so it does not feel as constricting or claustrophobic, (my wife said she felt a bit hemmed in without the guy line in), two it helps aid the ventilation of the cocoon when you have it fully zipped up. As you are enclosed your expelled air needs to be allowed to escape so as not to cause excessive condensation inside the cocoon which could lead to dampness and a reduction in efficiency of the cocoon, this escapes via the head end vent hole. It also allows you to hang small items such as a torch inside the cocoon with you.

    So how does it work, well as you will see from the pictures Ian will be posting, I set it up without a tarp so you can clearly see all the details, it works extremely well, it is very easy to set up, get in and out of and it sure is warm. In the pictures we were out in fairly cold conditions, however I tested it out this Saturday (22/11/08) and it was a very clear cold night, at 01:30Hrs I had to answer the call of nature. When I unzipped the cocoon I felt the blast of cold hit me, I was only wearing boxers and a T shirt, there was a good frost on the grass too, but inside all zipped up I was extremely toasty. This was without any other form of cover, no sleeping bag or blanket, very impressive.

    So my opinion, this is an excellent bit of kit well worth investing in. Even if you already (as I do) have an under blanket or quilt. This is a great bit of kit on its own, it could even be used as a sleeping bag for ground dwelling too, but if you fancy stopping out in really cold temperatures I recon this way out performs the quilt and blanket option, how about combining them together for mega warmth, cocoon over your under blanket and quilt, (my god you would melt unless you were in sub arctic conditions). In my wifeís opinion, she would prefer using the cocoon than a quilt and under blanket as it offers some privacy for a lady as it is enclosed, allowing her to have some degree of privacy when disrobing for sleep.

    Did I have any dislikes about it, well the only comments I gave back to Ian on a negative were that I thought the colours should be reversed, i.e. green outside black inside as I thought it warmed up quicker with the black inside, also I like green as the outer colour as opposed to the black. We discussed fitting a line to lift the head end away from your face, but the use of a ridge line inside solved this issue so I donít think additional lines are needed. Other than that no, nothing negative about it. Apart from the fact I have to give it back 
    But my name is now on the group buy list.

    It packs down to the size of a medium sleeping bag and when carrying this you donít need carry a sleeping bag, thermarest mat, under blanket or quilt.

    So hats off to Ian for coming up with another great bit of kit and I look forward to receiving my own ready for this winters trips out. Cheers Ian.

  2. #2
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    Nice review fella, I`m looking forward to seeing the piccies when Ian gets on.

    Which hammock did you try it with, would it be long enought to cover the GB Magikelly one ?
    Rich

    www.trek-lite.com - New Lightweight Backpacking Forum

    Heading North - my trip blog

  3. #3
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    Hi Shewie

    I just used a Pyramid Jungle hammock, The cocoon ityself is huge, plenty long and wide enough.
    As some of you know I am not a small chap and it was more than roomy enough for me to sprawl out inside. 6' 5" 48" chest, 17Stn. Still plenty of room left to spare.

    My wife, who does not like being cold when camping said she would definately have one of these as it was warmer than her sleeping bag. I think this is mailny due to it being enclosed and retaining your body heat well.

    I noticed a few asked about size and warmth so hopefully this will answer those questions.
    Warmth is awesome, as I said I was just in boxers and T shirt and was well warm enough.

  4. #4
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    Excellent review, just need to see the photos now.
    As a ground dweller I still to be convinced about hammocks but I have an open mind
    Bootstrap,


    There's no such thing as inclement weather - you're just incorrectly dressed

  5. #5
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    Very interested in one of these.Are they going to be available soon and any idea how much they'll be?

  6. #6
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    Hi Sapper1

    Take a look on the group buy section for details of cost and availability.
    Well worth it in my opinion.

    No conection to Ian by the way in case anyone thinks I have.

  7. #7
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    Here are the first photos.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Ian.

  8. #8
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    Good review, honest & impartial.

    I have a HH and 2 DD's with mozzy netting. I know the HH is not suited for obvious reasons, but what about the DD's, would the cocoon fit over the mozzy netting or not?

    Simon

  9. #9

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    Nice review.

    One question though: If it was not so cold but cool enough to need an underblanket, could you lie on top of it (not in it) and use a standard sleeping bag?

    Thanks
    A.K.A Boonie

  10. #10
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    Hi Simon

    I think it would, this is something I am looking to try out before Ian collects the cocoon back from me. I will see if I can get to the woods today or tomorrow to give it a go.

    I suspect at the very worst you could support the head end of the mozzinet inside the cocoon, and that you may have to let the foot end rest a bit lower or even just let it lie, but I will let you know how I get on.
    Eeeh so much to do before I return to the relms of the employed persons. , but obviously I am glad to have found new employment so quickly, been a nice three week break in a way, got loads done... but we can chat about that at the meet.

    Edit to reply to Dan too.

    Dan, No need mate, you would not need the sleeping bag honest, if it was not as cold you just unzip the cocoon a bit and lie with your head and arms out if you wished to. You will get a better idea when Ian has posted the photos as in one shot I am slightly out of the cocoon.
    Last edited by In Wood; 24-11-2008 at 13:03.

  11. #11
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    Rest of photos.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    Ian.

  12. #12
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    Looks like a graet bit of kit. Looks warmer and easyer to set up than the underblanket and quilt set up. Im very interested.

  13. #13
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    Is there enough room to lie at an angle in your hammock so you are relatively flat?

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by SimonM View Post
    Good review, honest & impartial.

    I have a HH and 2 DD's with mozzy netting. I know the HH is not suited for obvious reasons, but what about the DD's, would the cocoon fit over the mozzy netting or not?

    Simon
    You could flip the DD upside down and sleep with the mozzie netting below you, just like a 'normal' hammock. Obviously the mozzie net won't be in use but if it's that cold, the bugs should be less of a problem.

    Cheers,

    Alan
    Cheers,

    Alan

  15. #15
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    Great Info - cheers

    When you say it packs down to the size of a small sleeping bag, what size is this?

    cheers

  16. #16
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    Question Group Buy

    Hi, I wish to join the group buy for the Snugpak cocoon Hammock sleeping Bag, can someone please point me in the right direction,
    thanking you Regards Bill

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canalvoyageur View Post
    Hi, I wish to join the group buy for the Snugpak cocoon Hammock sleeping Bag, can someone please point me in the right direction,
    thanking you Regards Bill


    Have a look at this thread Bill

    http://www.bushcraftuk.com/forum/showthread.php?t=30046


    Oh and welcome to the forum
    Rich

    www.trek-lite.com - New Lightweight Backpacking Forum

    Heading North - my trip blog

  18. #18
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    OK, to answer some of these questions:

    Addo, Yes it is.

    MagiKelly, yes you can, there is plenty of room to lie across as I did Saturday night, it looks out of align in that photo but it does set up just fine.

    SimonM, As Chainsaw says you can turn over your DD as there is no need for the mozzy net in these temps, but I will let you know tomorrow on how it goes with the net inside.

    Verloc, 13” high by 9” across, 29” around, but you could pack it smaller if you really stuff it in the stuff sack. It is about half the size of my issue dos bag and weighs less than a bag of sugar.
    The added benefit is you don’t have to carry a kip mat, sleeping bag, under blanket or quilt, so weight and size wise far less to carry.

    Hope that helps you all.

    Ian, did you get the other photos and are you putting any more on? If you need me to resend them let me know and I will go to the library to send them tomorrow. DUH! I should have looked at the earlier post before replying. :-) Weird though as I had seen Simon & DanDan's posts but your first one had not shown up with the photos on until me replying now so I did not scroll down past my reply to those guys. Oh well all sorted and nice pictures, Gosh I am a hansome chap arent I.

    Note to self, really need to get broadband back on at home.
    Last edited by In Wood; 24-11-2008 at 18:39.

  19. #19
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    When is the list going to start? c'mon c'mon c'mon.

  20. #20
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    Sapper1, go to the group buy section, and add your name to the exsisting list.

  21. #21
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    Is it water repellent? Specifically thinking of possible splash back when there is little or vegetation to hold the rain back.
    Statistically, 6 out of 7 dwarves are not Happy.

  22. #22
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    IIRC the material used is Paratex light and according to Snugpak site it is water repellent.
    Ian.

  23. #23
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    Nice review In woods, You've swayed me over to the GB. I was looking to get an alpkit bag for the colder months as my arctic issue bag is toasty but fills my backpack and weighs a ton.
    I want something smaller and lighter and warm, and the way you can regulate the warmth with the zip and also use it as a regular sleeping bag wins it for me.
    Coupled with the fact you dont need a thermarest under you I will have much more room in my back pack.I toyed with the idea of making my own with a sleeping bag but didn't think it would be wide enough and would of had to buy one and alter it.

    well done on the design Ian(WS)
    great review Ian(In woods)

  24. #24
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    You are welcome Bodge, just don't wear that Swanni you got off me inside it or you will melt.

    Hope to see you again in January.

  25. #25
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    Thumbs up

    More info on the cocoon.

    SimonM asked if it could be set up with a DD hammock whilst still using the mozzy net, well yes it can.

    I set up my DD without rigging the mozzy net up, then slid the cocoon over the hammock, by running the additional ridge line through the cocoon and passing it through the central loops on the mozzy net it works quite well, keeping the cocoon and mozzy net well up off your face and away from your feet at the other end.

    The only faff about (and it is not a massive fuss) is doing up the zips. Obviously you fasten up the cocoon first but if you donít have a torch it is a bit dark to find the zip on the mozzy net to fasten that up too. You need good balance too as you need to sit up to get the second zip closed.

    But as a whole I was quite impressed as to how well they go together, I had thought there was no need for the mozzy net as you were enclosed inside the cocoon, but with this option you can have the cocoon open some way as ventilation if it is not that cold and still not be bitten by the nasty blighters. So well done SimonM for asking and getting me to experiment, I am impressed with this set up.

    There are possibly endless tweaks you could do to the cocoon to make it fit any hammock, like side holes so it works with a Hennessey, Velcro tabs to attach it to the mozzy net or other options, but I think as it is, it is just about perfect for what it was designed for, if you do have a Hennessey, it would not take much to adapt it yourself and as we know we Bushcrafters are a resourceful lot, but I donít know how you would zip it up once inside your Hennessey thatís for you Hennessey guys to figure outÖ.. Hmm I can almost hear those brain cogs starting to whir now.

    So as I said before, my name is down for one and I highly recommend this bit of kit and again, I have no ties or connection to either Wandrinstar, SnugPak or anyone involved in this product, just happy to be given the chance to do the first review and very pleased with the kit.

  26. #26
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    Thumbs up Cocoon Review

    Hi,First thank you for adding my name on the group buy list, and just to say brilliant review every question I would have asked has been asked and answered, most interested about the mozzi net question and answer, so roll on payment, order and delivery, then global warming do your worst. Regards Bill
    Look for not what it is, but for what it could become.
    Improvise, Utalise, Adapt and Overcome.

  27. #27
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    Payment would be much appreciated NOWif you want Coccoon as a Chrissie pressie. (Royal Mail permitting).
    Please put any questions and orders on Group Buy. Saves me getting confused (in my present state, that is getting easier as time goes by).
    Ian.

  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by In Wood View Post
    But as a whole I was quite impressed as to how well they go together, I had thought there was no need for the mozzy net as you were enclosed inside the cocoon, but with this option you can have the cocoon open some way as ventilation if it is not that cold and still not be bitten by the nasty blighters. So well done SimonM for asking and getting me to experiment, I am impressed with this set up.


    I'd justifed not joining GB because I have a DD Travel Hammock. Now that excuse is blown out of the water.

    Dilemma. Do I blow this (and next) month's toy budget, or hope there's enough interest in the GB that it will still be going in the New Year, or do I just go with an underblanket/quilt combo that I'll probably get more use out of...

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by wanderinstar View Post
    Please put any questions and orders on Group Buy. .
    The choice is yours my friend. BUT, there always is a but, you could always use the Coccoon in winter and the Combo in summer. Coccoon when backpacking and the Combo when in the car.
    Ian.

  30. #30
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    in woods nice meeting you at the middlewood meet hope to see you in january and also do you require a tarp still with this cocoon cheers drew

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