SWAGS

Submitted: Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 06:50
ThreadID: 30470 Views:8027 Replies:19 FollowUps:18
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All,

I'm in the market to buy a Swag. Never having had one before and hence having no knowledge about them, I seek some advice on buying one. I am seeking a Swag that would be suitable for general all round use and not for specific climates.

What should I look for in the way of construction, what to avoid, brands available etc etc.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Macca
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Reply By: Kimbo - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 07:17

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 07:17
Good quality canvas and double stitching with a good fine mesh to keep out the little bugs and also good quality zips.
Also a good quality mattress inside.
My son has an Ultimate swag and it hasnt been treated with care and is well used he has had it since he was about 10 yrs old and is now 19 and it is in as new condition still.

Regards
Kimbo
AnswerID: 153259

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 10:02

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 10:02
Macca ,
Like Kimbo I would recommend Ultima swags ( I think Kimbo meant Ultima ). I have had one for 12 years and it is indestructable . I just bought a "Hilton" model for my wife and she thinks it is so good she never wants to open up the camper .
These swags have insect proof mesh on three sides and a big canvas flap that can be zipped over it all in case of high wind or rain .
It is great to sleep at night looking at the stars without worrying about bugs getting in . Tie one end to the bull bar and one to a tree .
They are not cheap though . www.ultimaswag.com
Cheers ,
Willie .
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FollowupID: 407207

Reply By: Beer Pig - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 07:34

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 07:34
I have got a Burke & Wills (Redgum Model) and are very happy with it.
It has got full fly mesh right down to your feet which is graet for summer just like sleeping under the star without the mozzies getting you. It has a good matress and is easy to set up.

I got mine of ebay and saved about $70
AnswerID: 153260

Reply By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 08:02

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 08:02
Macca we have 3 swags a southern cross double and single and a down under single
They have there good and bad points when the weather is fine there great and when its raining there not so good.

All the best
Eric
AnswerID: 153267

Follow Up By: Cheiffy - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 07:41

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 07:41
Hi Eric,

I was looking at getting one of the Southern Cross doubles myself. Could you tell me from your experiences, a few of the good and bad points? We are looking at coming up your way in August and it will also be used for other trips as well i.e. High Country,

Thanks
Cheiffy
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Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 21:40

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 21:40
Cheiffy I like the southern cross because It stays off you no canvas on you it has straight sides and a foot hoop.
It is also a top entry and not a side entry so you step into it.

Draw back no rear awning on window I got one sewn on to it cost about 30$ at local canvas store.

All swags are horrible in the rain we just put a simple tarp over for those nights.

I am 6foot 3 and 135 kg and don't find it cramped in the double with the wife.{she would say different but I know she cant escape}
When out and about on my own I use the single and I fit well in that also.

Hope this helps.

All the best
Eric
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FollowupID: 407628

Follow Up By: Cheiffy - Wednesday, Feb 08, 2006 at 03:53

Wednesday, Feb 08, 2006 at 03:53
Thanks for this Eric,

I think I will be going with the Southern Cross.

Cheers

Cheiffy
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FollowupID: 407679

Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Wednesday, Feb 08, 2006 at 07:48

Wednesday, Feb 08, 2006 at 07:48
Cheiffy just one other thing when you get to the store see it set up and get in it and see how it feels if buying a double get in with the other half.

All the best
Eric
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FollowupID: 407683

Follow Up By: Cheiffy - Thursday, Feb 09, 2006 at 13:33

Thursday, Feb 09, 2006 at 13:33
Thanks again,

I have done a search and can get one for $460 for a double. I have actually layed down in one (double) and appreciate the extra turning room. If the misses comes away with me, I usually take the tent (due to the dogs coming as well).

Cheers

Cheiffy

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FollowupID: 407981

Reply By: ben - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 09:28

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 09:28
agree with all the above,if you have the money and space, buy yourself a double swag, so much more room, so when its cold ya have your sleeping bag around you , you can roll round easily.also need the mesh over you, like said earlier.
good luck, let us know what you decide,
AnswerID: 153285

Reply By: Pyalong - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 11:48

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 11:48
We have a 1 X Double and 2 X kingsize Burke and wills redgum. They are brilliant...but a bit exy on cost. The double is ok for 2 people...but condensation is a bit of a bummer if need to close up shop due to rain....we have beaten the problem by erecting a tarp over the lot.....this also helps a great deal getting in and out when the weather is bad.

Oh...these swags...esp the double, are not as small as the cheaper swags when rolled up and sleeping bags inside.....I put them on the roofrack....and love the comfort of a great night sleep they give.

Cheers,
Mick.
AnswerID: 153307

Reply By: Gerry - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:17

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:17
Hi,
Also, make sure it has a screened opening at the end near your head that you can open during wet weather to let some air in if the top is closed. Even better if it has another flap at the foot end as well as this allows some airflow through the swag.
Gerry
AnswerID: 153310

Reply By: prado4x4 - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:38

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 12:38
Got a Burke n Wills redgum myself, love it.

One of the other things that all of the swags recomennded have, that hasn't be explicitely stated, is flex-poles or ropes to lift the top layer of canvas off you (like a small tent). Makes it a lot more comfortable to sleep.

Some of the cheaper swags are the more traditional styles which are like giant sleeping bags. Check out some of the camping store websites and you'll see the difference.

I'd also reccomend getting one with a good quality matteress. At least 65mm foam, or ideally a self inflatting matteress. Great insulation from the cold of the ground, and a comfortable nights sleep.

Hope it helps .......

John

AnswerID: 153316

Reply By: Rosco - Qld - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 14:34

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 14:34
Macca

As some above have stated, the Ultima are very good, albeit a bit exxy.
We have a double which we used for our high country trip. Very comfortable, but we went for 70mm foam + we use a mat of those clip together foam mats under.

Very happy with it overall.

Cheers

Rosco
AnswerID: 153345

Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:51

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:51
You heading up the cape this year rosco.
Now that I have a look at the pictures yours might have been a tad bigger.




All the best
Eric
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FollowupID: 407305

Follow Up By: Rosco - Qld - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:04

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:04
G'day Eric

So was the shrimp .......... LOL

Nah mate, unfortunately used up all my hol mun muns in the high country. Wouldn't take too much persuading though. Ho's the outie, than used to be an innie??

Cheers cobber

Rosco
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Follow Up By: Eric from Cape York Connections - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 08:32

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 08:32
Rosco A few days in hospital and a few sit ups it looks fine.




All the best
Eric
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FollowupID: 407458

Follow Up By: Rosco - Qld - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 08:45

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 08:45
ROFLAMO !!!!!!!!!

From what I recall, the only similarity is the number of toes.

Cheers
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FollowupID: 407461

Reply By: DesC - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:21

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:21
don't get one with zips and make sure the foam mattress is high density.
AnswerID: 153367

Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:38

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:38
I disagree . The Ultima has zips and is a strong as you could need .
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Follow Up By: DesC - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:04

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:04
They maybe OK, in Sydney.
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Follow Up By: Member - Willie , Epping .Syd. - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 20:34

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 20:34
They are OK in the NT - three trips , OK in the Pilbarra , OK in the Great Sandy and Little Sandy Deserts , OK in the MacDonalds , OK on the
on the NSW South Coast , OK goat shooting , OK trout fishing in the Snowy ..........................................................they are OK EVERYWHERE Des !
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FollowupID: 407365

Follow Up By: DesC - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 12:28

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 12:28
I guess you wouldn't get sticks, dirt and mud in a caravan.
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FollowupID: 407483

Reply By: Gus77 - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:27

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 16:27
Macca

Dont know where you are located, but I bought an excellent large double swag from a small manufacturer in Upper Ferntree Gully here in Melbourne called J&J Canvas. They custom made is for us. It is made of heavy duty canvas, has double stitching, a rubber bottom, a separate canvas top and fly screen (so you can watch the stars) and is self supporting. And more importantly it was cheap as compared to alot of the other 'big' swag makers in town.

We have taken it back a couple of times to get modifications done. We added side windows after the first time we used it (cause I discovered I get a bit claustophobic), storage pockets for torch, keys, glasses etc and also got a large rear window added. All windows have fly wire.

We use a 3 inch self inflatable mattress in it already set up with everything in it and store it folded in half on the roof rack in a rack sack. We have taken it on the Simpsons Deserst, Flinders ranges and tons of high country trips and have been comfortable, toasty warm and the first ones setup everytime! Get yourself a good canopy to go over it for really wet weather and there is nothing better.

Cheers

Angus
AnswerID: 153370

Reply By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:15

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:15
I have a down under. It has hoops either end with fly screen and canzas if raining.Best thing I ever did was turf the mattress and replace it with a self inflating mattress. makes it really bulky but it is just me and gives ultimate comfort
AnswerID: 153382

Reply By: Mike Harding - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:54

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 17:54
I have found the Mitchell Swag to be very good. Currently shown at $269 but I paid $200 for mine in a sale last year. Heavy canvas, good quality zips, complete mozzie nets, zipped openings and mozzie nets at head and feet. I have used mine in everything from minus 4C nights through days of heavy rain and up to 42C days and I have no complaints at all.

Swags can be a little claustrophobic for some (me included) but I've found that as long as I can see out it's OK, so in bad weather I usually leave the zip of the top flap open a few inches at face level - doesn't seem to let any rain in.

I keep a small tarp by the side of the swag so I can get out onto that in the morning - it may be wet but at least it isn't muddy. As I almost always camp in remote places getting out of the swag nude to dress is not an issue (and when it’s –4 it encourages you to dress quite quickly :) but if you were in a public campsite it might be - I reckon getting dressed in the swag would be next to impossible but some say they do?

http://www.grangerscampingworld.com.au/
Click "Tents" then "Swags"

Mike Harding
AnswerID: 153391

Follow Up By: Lone Wolf - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 18:20

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 18:20
I concur.

I own a Sar Major King Size Discovery, which I've had for a while, and a little while ago, I asked the forum for some help in getting Tracy into a swag (not mine...doh!). The responses actually DID work, and she went into a camping store, and chose the same swag, and also paid the $200.00, saving $69.00.

I went in next day to collect it, and brought it up home. She had this thing set up in no time flat, and it's got HEAPS of really cool design ideas built in.

These ideas would perhaps not be evident for the first time swag user, but as I've amassed around 30 nights last year alone, of which 18 were in succession, I do appreciate the finer points of some of the things they have incorporated into her swag.

Okay, it's not bullet proof like the Discovery, but I am actually jealous!!!

This is a damn good swag, and I reckon we'll get around 10 years use from it, working on every second weekend away, as well as our 3 week desert trips in May / June each year.

I am glad to hear Mike has had a good run with his, and I'll tell Tracy about this.

Wolfie
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Follow Up By: Mike Harding - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 19:18

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 19:18
Wolfie, a tip I have found with this swag:

with the guy rope from the foot end - pass it through the eyelett in the flap of canvas over the "window" in the foot end before pegging it into the ground and it keeps the canvas a few inches away from the mozzie net window which in turn ensures you get airflow into the swag. I have mine that way all the time, even in -4C.

Mike Harding
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FollowupID: 407344

Reply By: russ36 - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 18:43

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 18:43
its just so damn easy to make your own, from quality canvass, no sewing or buckless or studs, just flaps that fold over each other, you can add your favourite pillow, sheets and blankets or sleeping bag that you already own and a mattress that you prefer that you probably already own as well....so there you have it...custom made to perfection, and at a fraction of the cost.
AnswerID: 153406

Follow Up By: Member - Crazy Dog (QLD) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 21:24

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 21:24
While we are on the subject does anyone know the brand of the swag Malcolm Douglas used on his TV show the other nite?

Looked interesting....
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FollowupID: 407382

Follow Up By: Bonz (Vic) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 22:49

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 22:49
I reckon he uses a Saul Swag
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Reply By: geocacher (djcache) - Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 22:04

Monday, Feb 06, 2006 at 22:04
Try a Darche from Shepparton. They are sold all over but you can get them direct too.

Fantastic swags. A few variations.

Don't get one that has lots of poles and stuff. One or maybe two hoops is all.

Peg out the head end and leave the other. Or tie it to the bull bar.

The darche top zips completely open too so you can climb in from the head end if it's wet - bit awkward but at least your bed's dry. Though I usually have the awning off the side of the ute if it comes to that.

I lived in mine for 5 weeks on the last trip, & it was great.

One thing though. In both my swag and my daughters I replaced the mattress with a Thermarest. Packs heaps smaller and far more comfortable.

Dave

AnswerID: 153483

Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 00:31

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 00:31
Macca,

The ability for the swag to be "self supporting" is important.
One hoop at the head end and a single pole at the feet end is all that is required.
A top entry IMO is best and a high density mattress will give all but the fussiest sleepers a comfortable sleep. I still regard mine better than my bed at home and never suffer from a stiff, or sore back.

This type of swag enables you to fold back the canvas section on a warm night and gaze at the stars above. At the same time, the mesh insect screen protects you from the bities. The canvas is waterproof and you can sleep inside this type of swag in the rain without getting wet.

Having said that, no one wants to put away a wet swag if you are using it every night and therefore, a lean-to off the side of the vehicle is a good idea.

This swag can also be used just as a bed inside of a tent. just leave it laying flat, lay on top of it and cover yourself with a dooner or sleeping bag opened out.

For what it is worth, I have a pair of Down Under Jumbuck XL (extra large).
They are not cheap (about $340 each) when we bought them 5 years ago, but they are worth every dollar of their investment.
Bill


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AnswerID: 153518

Reply By: Barnesy - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 07:08

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 07:08
Sar Major king size discovery with hoop poles to keep canvas off of your face.

Barnesy
AnswerID: 153532

Reply By: Barnesy - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 07:09

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 07:09
Sar Major king size discovery with hoop poles to keep the canvas off of your face.

Barnesy
AnswerID: 153533

Reply By: macca172 - Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 09:15

Tuesday, Feb 07, 2006 at 09:15
All,
Thank you for your informative information about Swags. Armed with a wealth of information I will now do the rounds of camping stores and ring a few canvas product manufacturers. Once again thank you all for your assistance.

Macca.....ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ!
AnswerID: 153550

Reply By: Waynepd (NSW) - Thursday, Feb 09, 2006 at 18:06

Thursday, Feb 09, 2006 at 18:06
Not wishing to hijack this thread but has anyone here ever used or personally seen a Viking Swag?

http://www.vikingswags.com/

He writes a good ad. I was tempted but not ready yet to buy.....he seems to have good deals with freebies included...
AnswerID: 154118

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