Hi everybody this is Gijs again with
another review and I hope you are doing well. This time it is a sleeping bag: the
Vaude Marwees 500 DWN and and DWN stands for down and the special thing
about this bag is that it is filled with recycled down so if you are looking for
a new three season sleeping bag that is also sustainable watch this video! Welcome to the review of the Vaude Marwees 500 DWN and for people who are following me already for some wile they
might have noticed that I’ve not been uploading a video for I think about a
month or maybe even five weeks. And of course there is a reason for this first.
I was of course in a holiday in Sweden you might have seen the post, but there’s
also a family’s thing that needed some more attention than basically normal so
that’s why my head was not totally focused on doing decent reviews again. But now
things are getting back to normal again and I am really fully loaded with ideas. As usual I am quite close to home where I live and this is a Nature Reserve. Its
basically a farm field where a lot of nice birds come in the evening to get
the food out of the grass and there are also some really nice wetlands around
here. The thing that I’m sitting on is a hay bale and this is collected by one
of my friends who does the maintenance in this part of the Nature Reserve and
for me this is very convenient because now I can explain the sleeping bag on a
sort of table which is going to be very very handy in this case. So now let’s go
on to the sleeping bag: the Vaude Marwees 500 DWN As you can see it’s a
rather big packsize but because this is a very nice compression bag you can
still make it smaller. And it’s got a hook on this side and it’s got a sort of
a daisy chain which makes it very compressible. The size that I regularly
get it into is about 20 by 27 centimeters Now let’s get it out of its pouch and I’ll explain you everything there is to
know about the Marwees. It takes about ten minutes to get it into its full
expansion and that’s why I always put my sleeping bag out of its pouch
immediately when I pitch the tent so it’s get its full fluffiness. There’s a
little hump in here because I had to put some clothing and two tripods in there
because it’s windy in the Netherlands again and the sleeping bag kept blowing
away. Which I don’t like if I’m doing a video. Back to the sleeping bag and I
don’t know what you know about Vaude as a company. In Europe Vaude is one of the leading companies if we talk about ecological
and sustainable production. In this sleeping bag there is recycle down that Vaude has been using down already of course for a long time. Not only for sleeping
bags also for jackets and other stuff. The down that they use until present day
is not from animals that are live picked. They only use animals – geese and duck –
that are going to the slaughterhouse just for the meat production. Well of course there is a certain amount of animal harm done in this respect but
life picking is even worse. They will still keep doing this because not
everything everything in their production not all their products can be
sustainable down at the moment so that there will still be this kind of
production but Vaude also told me that they don’t even use the geese that are
being brought up for the foie gras let’s say the enlarged geese liver which is a
very nice delicacy if you like the taste but the production way is very
harmful for the animals itself. So even Vaude even doesn’t
use these animals. Now in this sleeping bag the recycle down comes from
big companies in mainly Germany but also in other parts of Europe that collect
clothing and they take out the down garments, duvets, sleeping bags, blankets,
pillows… that kind of stuff. If the whole product is not used for recycling anymore, if it’s just too damaged they take out the down that’s being cleaned
and that ends up at big collection centers and that’s where Vaude gets its
down from. So this is recycled down. I asked Vaude the question: do you know where the down has been before it went into the let’s say the recycle chain and
they say ‘No we cannot claim that the down in our sleeping bags is not from
animals that are hand-picked”. This might be life picked down but then still…if you use this kind of down it’s still way more sustainable then while getting
other companies to get auto life picked down so I think this is a very good way
to go. And Vaude says they are in the middle of let’s say
a sort of a new chain because there is a point that they know where all the down
comes from they collect it and they know it is recycled or it’s not life picked
down from its origins so in due time we will get a stable base with fully totally
recycled down. If everything goes like Vaude plans it. Now let’s get back to
the sleeping bag itself. As you can see my table is a little bit too small and that is becausce this sleeping bag is 220 centimeters in length and at the
shoulders it is 80 centimeters wide. So it is a big sleeping bag and for me as a
small person of 170 centimeters it’s a big too big maybe. But
that still leaves some space in the footbox to put some maybe some small wettish clothing so it can dry overnight or I can put some dry clothing in there so I
can put some warm clothing on in the morning and even if the nights get a
little bit more chilly I can put a thermos bottle in there so sometimes a
bigger sleeping bag can be as small as advantage as well. Now I told you the
length but I didn’t tell you do weight yet. I measured the Vaude at home on my
precise scale at 1368 gram precise. That’s including the pouch. Vaude claims a weight of 1,300 grams and this
little difference in my opinion it’s totally not important it’s not a big
deal so forget about it. Now you still might think that for a
three-season down-filled sleeping bag 1,300 grams is a bit on the high side
but there is an explanation for this and that has all got to do with the down
quality. The recycled down has got a Cuin value of 550. If you don’t
know what Cuin is, I’ll try to explain this. If we want to measure the quality
of down there is a fixed test protocol for this. And basically it is a tube
which you can look through from perspex and you put a fixed amount of down in
there then on top goes a weight. On the side of this tube there is a scale
and the way to press is to down, down. The more compression you get off the down
the less quality and why is this because a high quality of down has got a very
good way of trapping air and if you trap air very well the weight just doesn’t go
down that far, the compression rate is less. Now… 550 is still a very decent
quality of down for normal or regular sleeping bags. If we’re talking about the
high quality down then we’re talking about 850, 900 and 1000 Cuin in the rare
exception but that is incredibly expensive. Together with this Cuin value
we also have the temperature range that you can use this sleeping bag for. The
comfort temperature is 2 degrees Celsius, limit is minus 3 and the extreme
temperature limit is minus 20 and if you want to know more about this in detail
then hop over to the video I made earlier this year on the Rab Mythic
sleeping bag because I explained there and I’ll put a link below in the
description. If you want to make a sleeping bag off let’s say 2 degrees comfort temperature then you need a certain amount of down to get into that temperature area. Now if you take a
very high quality of down, you need less down because it isolates better. So you can put less weight in the sleeping bag. And that’s why you get some really
expensive very lightweight warm sleeping bags. With the Vaude this is quite a
regular weight with a regular quality and a quite normal temperature rating.
But they had to fill the sleeping bag with a little bit more down to get to the 2 degrees and that’s why the sleeping bag is a little bit more heavy than you
maybe might expect. Am I done talking about down? No not yet because I have not told you one thing and that’s the fact that this is not geese down but it is
duck down. And it is a percentage of 75% of real down – you know the small
fluffy particles – and the other 25 % is down feathers. There’s a little bit of a difference in it. I always open up a seam somewhere in sleeping bag and just to check what kind of down is in
there and this is really a nice fluffy quality with some feathers in there. Now you know about the duck down, but you don’t know about the outside material. Well this is a 50 Denier ripstop polyester. And ripstop means that if you
get a small puncture or a rupture on it that it won’t tear any further so you
will still remain most of the down inside it. 50 Denier it is quite a thick material,
thick and sturdy on the inside it’s the same material but not with the ripstop
part in it. This is just a very nice and soft material. It feels a little bit
silky to the skin which I really do like. What I did not explain to you yet is the
way how the down is constructed into the shell itself. As you can see there are
baffles that go on the wide side of the sleeping bag and the battles are
basically tri-dimensional like really nice round boxes. With really cheap sleeping bags they don’t have those kind of boxes. You know you’ve got just
the bottom top and the down between them and when you get a seam it goes like
this. And then you get this cold bridges where the seams where the outside fabric
and the in the fabric touch each other. Cold bridges are not good if you want
to have a good sleeping bag. So in this case it’s very well done because the sidewalls of the boxes are made out of a airy mesh material so that if
you’ve got some moisture – sweat – and just normal regular warm air, it can go from
this part to the sleeping bag to basically the foot end. It’s one big area inside there. The down remains trapped in the boxes so that’s the good construction.
Now that I’m talking about trapping air. One of the good things of the Vaude is
that it has got a very big collar or baffle to get around your neck it’s very
well filled with down and it’s got this button to close it. And there is a
pulling tab here as well so that you can really pull
the collar around your neck and when you do this you trap the air from your body
and from your legs inside the sleeping bag and it’s only your head that remains
on the outside. Now let me get this one loose again. On the inside you
can also see that it has a very large hood and I like large hoods because I
like sleeping with a pillow or just with some clothing inside some other clothing
and if you put it underneath your sleeping bag you always end up with a
pillow that travels in your tent. If you put it inside the hood itself the pillow
stays there and there is space enough for my head and the pillow. To tighten this
one down there is of course a cord with also a tab and this is really a shitty
construction because… and you can see me wrestling around now already… you can
pull it and yes then the hood will get more tight around your head but the silly
thing is that one part of the court is round and one part
is flat. The round part does its job perfectly but the flat part is being
damaged just by the clip itself and it is really a hassle to close it or to
open it and this is something that should not happen with a sleeping bag of
this quality. So that’s one big negative point. A very nice feature of the Vaude is this little pocket that’s hidden on the inside it’s got a small zipper
and it’s large enough to fit a large smartphone and this is actually the best
place to keep your smartphone at night because when it gets colder the smartphone
battery dies and in this way you know you get it close to your body in
full warmth which is I think a very good thing. If it’s good for your health I
really wouldn’t know. Small zipper on the inside, big zipper on the left outside
and the good thing is that this zipper is hidden in a zipper garage so it
doesn’t touch your neck or your head even when you lie down you don’t feel it.
One thing that I noticed is that the zipper doesn’t open but it
self when you’re changing your position the night which sometimes happen with
other sleeping bags and it really runs very smoothly. Behind the zipper there is
this really well filled baffle and this of course prevents warm air getting out
through the zipper itself. One other thing that is very very cool on the
zipper is the fact that it has got a guide rail which means that if you
close the zipper again the fabric of the baffle of the sleeping bag itself never
gets tangled up into the zipper itself and this is really one of the best guide
rails I have ever seen. And for those who suffer from warm feet at night it’s a two-way zipper so you can always open up the sleeping bag to give your feet some
fresh air. Small details or sometimes very important like these two loops at the bottom of the sleeping bag and they are ideal if you want to air out your
sleeping bag during the daytime where you’re trekking and get all the moisture
out of it when the sun is shining. Two loops just a tree that’s enough. Now with the loops I think I’ve told you everything I think you need to know on
the Vaude Marwees. Except for one thing. I already told you that the outerfabric is a ripstop polyester. What I didn’t tell you is that there is not a
DWR coating on top of it. DWR stands for Durable Water Repellent. It means that if
you have a fabric and there gets a drop of water on it it does not get into the
fabric directly but it basically rolls of the fabric. Now… with a sleeping bag is
that absolutely necessary? No, but sometimes it is a very convenient. I’ve been testing the Vaude since this winter and I have been camping with cold
weather. Cold weather and warm inside… you get a lot of condensation in most
super-lightweight tents nowadays. Even if you have an outer tent and an inner tent. They stick sometimes together. But even in a inner tent you sometimes have condensation. Because of its length I’ve noticed a few times that when camping with colder
weather the foot box in particularly gets into
the tent fabric and it gets wet. And if this gets wet the down inside also gets a little bit wet. Down has got the natural habit of being hydrophobic so it doesn’t clutter down immediately, but it happened to me a few
times that I thought well this is a little bit too much and down that gets
wet doesn’t isolate that well. So I missed the durable water repellent
coating on a few occasions. I spoke to Vaude on this
issue and they told me that’s they have tents that are 230
centimetres long and that’s what this sleeping bag is designed for. Well okay
that’s fine if you have a tent that long no big deal. If you have another tent – most
tents are maximum two meters and 220 centimeters – then this is something you
really should consider. The fact that Vaude did not put a DWR coating on top of
it has got nothing to do with the environment because Vaude has got a lot
of products and that have a durable water repellent coating that is totally
free of PFCs. So without any environmental hassle. That’s just
something I wanted to tell you so that you will be aware of this if you buy
this sleeping bag for your camping adventures. And now onto my verdict: how
do I rate the Vaude Marwees 500 DWN? In the first place it is a very
comfortable sleeping bag to sleep in. And being comfortable, that’s the most
important thing because otherwise you don’t use it and that’s not sustainable
at all. I would say that the two degrees comfort temperature is for me has a
small lightweight guy a little bit on the positive side. For me it was more
like 5 degrees. If you’re bigger than I am a big sleeping bag will fit you
better and you will probably get into the 2 degrees without any problems.
Then the other thing that is very very good is of course that Vaude uses
recycled down. We might not know the origin of the down itself, if it’s from
animals that were slaughtered or life picked. We don’t know, but that is going
to change in the future if I listen to Vaude carefully. So this is a great step
for the whole industry and Vaude really sets a nice example and that
should be applauded. I also like theattention to detail in the Marwees. For
example the pocket on the inside, the very nice heat collar around your neck
but the best thing is the main zipper with the guard rail behind it so that
the fabric never gets stuck between it if you zip up the sleeping bag and
that’s something I do really hate at night. A bit of a bummer in that respect is also that the cordt from the hoodie is
of a sort of crappy quality it’s broken already and that’s something that should
not happen with a sleeping bag of this quality and also I would like to see a
water repellent coating on the outside especially for the colder nights with
condensation in a tent, not a Vaude in this case. On to the price. The Vaude Marwees 500 DWN retails for 230 euros and that’s quite a
normal price to pay for a down sleeping bag of this quality and I think that’s
quite special because most of the products that are used with sustainable
materials or recycled materials are way more expensive than the regular products.
This this is a very positive thing! And therefore I rate the Vaude Marwees 500 DWN at 8.1 out of 10 points total. I hope you liked to review and that it was
useful to you and if it was please give it a like and leave a comment below. If
you just tuned in to my channel then you might not know that I am a 100%
independent reviewer. I’m not being paid by manufacturers to make my reviews. I
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if you value my way of independent reviewing, please support me. Subscribe to my YouTube channel, like my Facebook page and follow me on Instagram. And if you do:
many, many, many, thanks! Enjoy the Outdoors! ciao ciao

2 thoughts on “Vaude Marwees 500 DWN RECYCLED DOWN SLEEPING BAG REVIEW

  1. Very nice review Gijs! I love the general information you have added to this video about down sleepingbags. Keep up the good work!

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