Sunday, November 06, 2005

Poly-Tube Down Air Mattress - DAM - Part 13 to 24

Part 13 -
Do not try this! Dry ice is -109 can cause severe burns/frostbite and can kill tissue...I wouldn't want to trust a sleeping bag between me and a bed of it..and it is Carbon Dioxide and it can suffocate you if used in a not well ventilated area. Check out this info first.

Part 14 -
Thanks for your concern and the web site was very interesting.

The safety issue was addressed. This will be done with great care. I will do it outside on a wooden deck. Several old foam sleeping pads will be put on top of the dry ice. Heavy gloves like Potters wear while working around hot kilns will be used to handle the dry ice. An IR Thermometer will be used and the dry ice will be inslated until the temperature is 0 to 20 degrees or so. Using the IR Thermometer I will know the temperature where the Air Mattress is laying at all times.

If I can't get the temperature up to 0 or so I will not do the test. It may be a couple of weeks before I am ready to try this.

If this plan doesn't sound safe enough I am open to suggestions.

Part 15 -
San Antonio, Texas: Police are at a loss to explain strange death. On a day with temperatures over 100 degrees a man was found frozen to death. He was found laying in a sunny spot on a pile of foam pads. Police suspect alien involvement. [That is a joke]

There is an Ice Skating Rink about 2 miles from where I live. I called to see what the surface temperature of the ice is. It is about 21 degrees and the concret at the ends of the rink are also about 21 degrees. The manager said I could do my test there if I though it was cold enough. I will go visit them later this afternoon and see.

That isn't as cold as I would like to have but it would be a lot less trouble to set up. If the Ice Rink works I will have a base line to work from.

I might be able to go someplace colder this winter for test at a lower temperature. Last winter in San Antonio the low in my backyard was 29 degrees. We had about 7 days of winter.

I appreciate the concern for my safety.

Part 16 -
I am having a problem with my home phone lines. The phone company will fix it sometime Tuesday they think. I am at my local library on a timed computer. When I get my phone fixed I will answer your questions about the silk and trekking poles. I get my silk from Thai Silks.

I went to the Ice Rink this afternoon. It was 47 degrees in the Rink area. The Ice was about 25 degrees. I will use the Ice Rink for my first Down Air Matress tests and see how that works.

Part 17 -
The Balloons (as I have written) are not re-usable. The Poly Tubing is re-useable

Part 18 -
Did you find any clips to close the ends with yet?

Also, did you see the thread on the Make Your Own Gear forum I posted about the plastic sealer?

I have been on and off the internet the last 3 or 4 days. I was having a lot of trouble with my DSL connection and thought it was my phone. I have a young kitten that had chewed my phone wire to my DSL box. The little devil. I replace the line and that fixed the problem.

I have looked at a bunch of plastic clips and for me they are to heavy. I have an idea for a light weight wooden clip. I need a few Popsicle Sticks but I am still eating popsicles for the sticks. For now I still just twist and knot the end of the tubing. The knot adds no weight and one of these days I will tie and untie one of the tubes till I wear it out.

I saw the thread about the sealer. I called (Harbor Frieght - we have one here in SA) about the plactic sealer. The person there said he didn't think that sealer was heavy duty enough for the type of Poly Tubing I am using.

I got some 3" wide flat, tubing from the guy here. It blows up to about 2 -1/2". He sealed all the tubes for me and I am going to see how that size works for an Air Mattress to use in my Hammock. I will continue to buy the tubing I am testing with from him for awhile.

Part 19 -
To: Hanks Mamark18, I take this as a nice compliment. It is exciting thinking about all the other gear that might work with this material.

I would like to see pictures of the Airloft II Air Mattress. I think trying to attach a valve to a "make your own" Air Mattress would be a big dependability issue. A simple clip or knot would be hard to go wrong with. For me it is all a matter of "Keep It Simple" and it will be easy to fix when necessary. Think about using this piece of gear everyday for a AT Thru-Hike. Less parts, less problems.

Part 20 -
Once I get a couple of workable Poly Tube Air Mattress for my Hammock, one with Down and one without, I will have something to test with. One thing I want to try is using the Down filled mesh things in a second item. Thinking about winter hiking gear this would help lighten the weight of another item. It might be something like a Down Jacket used during the "Day" and the same Down filled mesh things in the Air Mattress or Sleeping Bag at night. This is an idea and it needs some good testing to see if it will really work. It could turn out to be more work or trouble than it is worth.

To use the Down Mesh things in something else or just take them out to dry out I need one end of the Poly Tubing that will open completly. A simple light weight clip of some type would be nice. My wooden clip idea will work even if the Popsicle Sticks are not strong enough. I may try Bamboo strips or thin aluminum for a clip.

It would be neat to have some type of valve system to inflate the tubes. The 2Mil Poly Tube material may not be strong enough to last long enough to justify the extra work.

Part 21 -
Thanks for the link to your picture. I have posted it here. The Air mattress looks heavy but well made. The next time I go to my local Wal Mart I will have to look over their cheap blow-up water toys.

Part 22 -
I had a chance to try the Poly Air Mattress in my Hammock this afternoon. It was much more comfortable than my Target Blue Pad or any of my Thermarest Pads. The picture makes the new Air Matress look small but when you get on it it is fine.

Part 23 -
Question: How about the little barrettes for kids' hair that have foam inside rather than teeth? Or you could buy plastic barrettes, file off the teeth, and add foam.

Answer: The popsicle stick clamp would work about like the hair barrette. I have tried the popsicle clamp and it does work.

I received a catalog and a few samples of balloons from Gayla Industries, the company that made the balloons I was playing with. The catalog has some balloon clips in it. I called them and they are sending me a few samples to see if they will work on the Poly Tubing. I don't think they will be large enough but if the idea is good I might be able to make some larger. All of these clips require twisting the end of the Poly Tube which I am not sure is any better than just twisting and knotting like a am now doing.

Part 24 -
The Poly Tube stuff I am using is 2Mil. You can get it up to 6Mil I think but at a cost in weight.

Using the popsicle sticks I roll the tubing. I roll one popsicle stick inside the Poly tubing and then place the other stick on top of it and tie it tight with a piece of string. I tried a rubber band but it was a thin one and didn't work well. I think a heavier rubber band would work better but string might last longer. I have the string tied to one popsicle stick so it doesn't get lost. All I can say at this point is that the popsicles sticks will work.

Still looking for other ways to clamp/clip/?? the ends.


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