Feedback required on product idea

Feb 10, 2016
2
0
London
Hi All - I hope this is the right place and that I won't fall foul of any spam rules.

I am currently researching the market for ultralight tents and from what I can see, there ought to be a gap in the 'hooped bivvy' bit of that market. Standard (non hooped) bivvies seem to be anywhere from £10-£50 yet with the addition of a hoop, they jump up over £100.

I think I can bring one, made in the UK, to market for £45 at a very good standard (I won't bore you with how).

Obviously before I commit to a production run, I want to gain peoples' feedback.

1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?
2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?
3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?

Thanks

BilltheBivvy
 

Tony

White bear (Admin)
Admin
Apr 16, 2003
22,026
621
49
Wales
www.bushcraftuk.com
Hey Bill,

I've let this one through moderation as a one off post that would be classed as self promotion, people can give you their input but please don't use this thread for promoting the idea beyond this post.

Thanks
Tony
 

Nohoval_Turrets

Full Member
Sep 28, 2004
348
10
48
Ireland
1) Have you used a bivvy?

YES!

If yes, what do you like about it?

emmm... it kept me dry. Kept the wind off

2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design?

I usually use a bivvy with a tarp, so the hoop thing is unnecessary.

3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?

I use either a tent, or tarp and bivvy. Both of these give you room to move about and do things in shelter, like cooking or reading. A hooped bivvy does not.
 

Shewie

Mod
Mod
Dec 15, 2005
24,260
17
44
Yorkshire
1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?

I use one regularly, they keep me dry and out of the weather


2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?

I have several, I prefer a sub 200g none hooped model when used with a tarp type shelter (which is most of the time), I have a twin hooped goretex Saturn bivvy which is nicknamed the coffin. It's a decent standalone shelter and handles bad weather fairly well, a bit flappy in the mid section in heavy winds.


3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?

Bivvies are great but they're not as practical as a tent imho, my Saturn is good for lying down in but that's about it, it's too small to cook in and entry/exit can be interesting in bad weather. I have tents which have much more room and are lighter, just better places to spend time.

I think hooped bivvies do have their place though, I often grab mine if I know pitches are limited
 

Tonyuk

Settler
Nov 30, 2011
882
50
Scotland
Hi All - I hope this is the right place and that I won't fall foul of any spam rules.

I am currently researching the market for ultralight tents and from what I can see, there ought to be a gap in the 'hooped bivvy' bit of that market. Standard (non hooped) bivvies seem to be anywhere from £10-£50 yet with the addition of a hoop, they jump up over £100.

I think I can bring one, made in the UK, to market for £45 at a very good standard (I won't bore you with how).

Obviously before I commit to a production run, I want to gain peoples' feedback.

1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?

Yes, it keeps the sleeping bag dry and clean and adds a bit of warmth in the colder weather. It can also replace the stuff sack meaning you can squash the whole bag down into the bottom of your bag without worrying that it'll get wet.

2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?

I've used both, but never owned the hooped bivi. For the cost of some of the hooped bivi systems you can buy some very decent 1 man tents that do essentially the same thing plus give you a bit more room to move. The hooped bivi was good since i never had to bother with a tarp meaning setting up camp was a bit quicker. I never really 'hated' anything about it but the zip and material felt a bit flimsy for what it would cost to buy.

3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?

N/A

Thanks

BilltheBivvy
Hope any of this helps,

Tonyuk
 

John Fenna

Lifetime Member & Maker
Oct 7, 2006
21,732
1,183
62
Pembrokeshire
1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?
Yes I have used a bivvy - I have also designed bivvies. I like the way they add a tad of warmth to a sleeping system and a degree of weather resistance.
2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?
I sometimes use a normal bivvy (MOD) but only as a sleeping bag cover under a tarp. In the past I have used hooped bivvies but found them all too small for comfort as my primary shelter with no "Admin" area.
3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?
I have used ultra light tents in the past when I needed a measure of admin room and privacy - such as when leading youth expeditions - when a bivvy was not the obvious choice.The dividing line for me is falls in the ability to write up notes, get dressed and make a brew in privacy - or not having this room.

None of the options really suit my current needs and taste - I have not used a hooped bivvy or ultralight tent in years choosing instead a tarp set up and a standard bivvy as a sleepingbag cover only in the very worst weather. I like the room given by a tarp and the view in the morning afforded by not being shut into a nylon sack - I rarely put my head in a sleeping bag never mind a bivvy....
I hope that is of use to you.
 

Nomad64

Full Member
Nov 21, 2015
1,073
575
Just out of range
1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?

Yes, I have a British Army "Goretex" bivvy <£30 (inc P&P) from the Bay of E in "as new" condition. Simple, cheap, waterproof, bombproof and breathable. A bit on the heavy side but I also have an older, lightweight pertex bivvy which does pretty much the same but is probably not quite as robust. Both bivvys keep the sleeping bag clean and boost the temperature rating even if rain is not an issue including in a hammock.

2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?

Cost, weight and the fact that for me, the point of using a bivvy set up is to avoid feeling cooped up in small tent/coffin and when combined with a tarp, somewhere to sit out and cook in inclement weather.

3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?

Yes, I have an old but decent quality Macpac Microlight tent (latest version RRP about £250) which probably weighs less than a bivvy/tarp set up (1.5 kg?). I use both and both work well although I would be happier if the Macpac was a more discrete colour than royal blue.

Sleeping in a bivvy under a tarp is a far more immersive experience than being shut up in a tent. Under a tarp, even if it is raining, you have plenty of space to cook, do your admin and whatever else floats your boat plus you can have a fire or use a hobo type wood burning stove to cook on which is not really an option (sparks) if you are lying in a small tent trying to cook in a small porch. Two people with bivvys can share a tarp but you have to be very good friends to share most ultralight tents.

Things may have moved on since I bought mine but condensation is an issue in even the best ultralight tents but I've yet to have an issue with either of my bivvys.

One area where tents and hooped bivvys probably have a clear advantage is being able to escape from midges and other biting nasties but bug nets can always be improvised.

I may be wrong but I suspect that the majority of people who use a bivvy do so in conjunction with a tarp (and I suspect that quite a few people using ultralight tents also use some kind of tarp/porch extension) so the choice is not quite as straightforward as bivvy v ultralight tent. Key criteria for an ultralight tent for me (apart from the obvious) would be a reasonable groundsheet, discrete colouring and a decent porch to store kit in and cook.

Good luck with your venture, innovative design and made in the UK is a definite plus but at the price point you are aiming for, I suspect you will have your work cut out to avoid being undercut by Chinese made knock-offs within a few months as has happened with the small hobo woodburning stoves.:)

 

Shewie

Mod
Mod
Dec 15, 2005
24,260
17
44
Yorkshire
Another consideration to think about with a hooped bivvy, you're likely to introduce a lot more condensation from your breath compared to a regular bivvy, you'll need a highly breathable fabric which is still completely waterproof, or water resistant if you're using a tarp. One or two bivvies I've owned have been awful for condensation, fine if there's a decent breeze over the fabric but on still, rainy or muggy nights they can be pretty grim.

A couple of my bivvies (MLD Superlight, Ti Goat Ptarmigan) both have large torso areas with a bug net faced hood, they just have a loop stitched in with a length of shockcord attached, that means I can clip it to the underside of a tarp or a trekking pole/tree, so you get the benefit of a hoop but less weight and much easier to manufacture. Useless as a standalone option (unless you carry poles anyway) but thought I mention it as an option.

I'll be interested to see what you come up with, as Nomad64 said it's good to see UK made products coming to the fore.
 

QDanT

Settler
Mar 16, 2006
933
4
Yorkshire England
1 - Yes - If it's not raining I can sleep under the stars, and keeps my sleeping bag dry and warmer
2 - British Army Bivy Bag. If it's raining I'll set up a tarp and can still see out and lends itself to a mossy net
3 - If I'm going camping I'll take my Vango Mk10 (4) cotton inner / cotton flysheet for more room cooking etc.
Good Luck
 

Quixoticgeek

Full Member
Aug 4, 2013
2,476
5
Europe
I am currently researching the market for ultralight tents and from what I can see, there ought to be a gap in the 'hooped bivvy' bit of that market. Standard (non hooped) bivvies seem to be anywhere from £10-£50 yet with the addition of a hoop, they jump up over £100.
I'd check your research there. £10 for a breathable bivvi bag? Really? Where can I get one.

I think I can bring one, made in the UK, to market for £45 at a very good standard (I won't bore you with how).
Two questions for you:

  1. How much will it weigh?
  2. How breathable will the fabric be? What's it's Moisture vapour transmission rate?

Obviously before I commit to a production run, I want to gain peoples' feedback.

1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?
Yes, I did 15 nights in bivvi bags last year, using 3 different bags

2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?
Weight. I use a bivvi bag to reduce weight. For the weight of most hooped bivvi bags I can have a tent, in which I can actually sit up, cook in, etc...
3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?
For me an ultralight tent has the advantage of more space, better bug protection, somewhere for my pack, space to cook. Tents like the Tramplite shelter offer all of this for less weight than my DPM bivvi bag, or the combined weight of my Hunka XL and Rab Sil Tarp 1.

Good luck with your new product, I'd be happy to test it out when you get a prototype.

Julia
 

petrochemicals

Full Member
Jul 30, 2012
3,509
209
westmidlands
1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?
2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?
3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?

Thanks

BilltheBivvy
I like the really small footprint and the speed of deployment.

I didnt and dont go for a hooped design as they are nailed down and awkward. I did however put a couple of lengths of wire over the bivvy to suspend the top, sort of giving it structure without having to pitch it with a clunking pole, without it being unwieldy, sort of like an iron maidenn you cant moove.

I have used small tents, i went for that design so i didnt have to lie down to keep the rain out. to see sit up or rest without sleeping in a bivvy can get tricky if its raining. Problem with the tent is the level pitching ground, and the space top actually turn about, so some sort of small tent bivvy may be good, if it gets rid of the problems of both

Ive eventually bought a huge tent 3kg 120cm tall, takes ages to pitch, requires a load of resonably level ground, bright orange.
 

nic a char

Settler
Dec 23, 2014
591
1
scotland
"I use either a tent, or tarp and bivvy. Both of these give you room to move about and do things in shelter, like cooking or reading."
Same here.
But also, a camo goretex long jacket and breex, wide-brim hat + midge net, boots off, wash feet, warm dry sox + home-made insulated waterproof "boots" which tuck well up under the 2 breex-legs, lying on a camp-mat.
In spring & autumn down jacket & breex under the camo.
 
Feb 23, 2015
3
0
London
1) Have you used a bivvy? If yes, what do you like about it? If no, why not?
Yes. British Army Goretex bivi. Dirt cheap (in my case, free from army buddy), light (ish) and stands up well to abuse - weather and physical. It's also pretty cavernous inside. If weather is really bad I can sleep in it with all my gear to make sure it all stays dry.

2) If you have a normal bivvy, why did you choose not to go for a hooped design? If you use a hooped bivvy, what do you love and hate about it?
Never used a hooped bivi. Too expensive to buy as an experiment. Although the lack of 2nd hand ones on ebay makes me think that people that do buy them either like them too much to sell, or hate them so much they destroy them in a fit of rage. Dutch surplus ones occasionally pop up in the £30-50 range so might try one out at some point. I mainly use my bivi when:
- stealth camping. need the freedom of movement of a non-hooped bivi to hide in whatever bush I'm in.
- in a bothy. Purely for extra warmth so hoops unnecessary
- under a tarp. Hoops unnecessary

3) If you use an ultralight tent, why did you go for that and not a bivvy? Where do you think the dividing line between those two things lies?
My Vango Banshee 200 is about 2kg which is not that heavy when compared to the army bivi. For the extra weight I get a lot better protection from the elements and it's never that difficult to find a large enough spot to pitch it.

I think I'd want a hooped bivi to be usable when it's
Hot - don't want your head covered
Midgey - net to keep them away
Raining - covered over your head
That describes a summer in the Highlands so some way to have your head covered from the rain but bivi still open would be great. Like the Carinthia Observer Plus but not £500!
 

Wayne

BCUK Welfare Officer
Mod
Dec 7, 2003
3,456
319
48
West Sussex
www.forestknights.co.uk
I have several bivvys. I like to choose the right shelter for the style of travel I am doing.

I have an arkits goretex hooped bivvy. I rarely use it. It takes the same time to erect as a regular tent. Has little useable space is interesting to get in and out of in the middle of the night for a nature break. Changing clothes in one makes you look like you're having a seizure. Condensation is a problem. A wet sleeping bag is a wet sleeping bag with the same result whether the moisture source is inside or out.

If im going to use a tarp I don't need the bivvy.

Rather use use a small tent. Better ventilation. More usable pace and more privacy.
 

Thoth

Full Member
Aug 5, 2008
312
9
Hertford, Hertfordshire
Bivvi bag under a tarp for me in the woods, but bugs can be a bother. Lightweight tent for buggy places and camp-sites. A friend used a Dutch surplus hooped bivvy but always had bad condensation problems with it. I'm still working on a Mozzie-net solution!
 

SCOMAN

Full Member
Dec 31, 2005
2,079
174
50
Perthshire
Used a hooped bivvy quite a few years ago, I modded it from a UK army one. What I didn't like was somewhere dry to sit and have a brew, get dressed and stow kit unless a tarp was used. If that's the case then you may as well use a tent. Moved my bivvy on but still have another with my US army sleep system, non hooped, and another that's designed more as a simple sleeping bag cover. It's a niche market piece of kit in my opinion, they can feel quite enclosed but add that you're now pegged to the ground and I felt quite restricted.