2012 Sheep Gear Review

swat8888

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Apr 6, 2012
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457
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Alaska
1. tried out the drinking tube system with the dromlite....awesome, I will never hunt without one again. easy to hydrate without fumbling with water bottles on the hillside.

2. go lite shangra la 5. 8 of 10. fabric is too light by the zipper and needs to be reinforced. I got a Foot long tear right at the zipper, the tent was taut but not overly so that the fabric should rip so easily. Thank god for duct tape. Loved the size and weight of the tent otherwise. it is a must to tie guy outs and extra stakes...thanks Luke for that tip.

3. DT1 9 of 10. I must say with heavy loads my old MR waist belt was more comfortable...the DT1 bruised my hips. The small tabs on the lid were also not sewn on very well at all. To hold my bow down I ran a 3/4" strap through the loops on my lid. Both of them are now almost ripped off, I will be sending the lid back to Kifaru. For some reason my shoulder straps are not sewn at the bottom to prevent accidentally pulling the strap out of the slider when loosening the pack...maybe mine just snuck past the QC process?

4. Sitka core crew. 5 of 10.... Smelled like butt after 1 day...otherwise dried quickly just too smelly for an extended hunt.

5. First lite llanos top. 9 of 10. Rocked...only got a 9 since I somehow got a small hole on my wrist day 1.

6. Slik Sprint Pro tripod. 8 of 10. The stock ball head was kinda crappy, and the quick release plate was too small for my liking..little too unstable. Worked well glassing some caribou while standing...but due to being lightweight with any amount of wind at full extension it's hard to get a stable image.

7. S&W 329 PD 44mag. 10 of 10. At around 2lbs loaded it was very nice to have as bear defense since I dont have any explosive tipped arrows in my quiver.

8. Ex officio boxers 9 of 10. little funkier than my merino, but not bad and easy to wash in the creek.

9. Sitka bino harness. 8 of 10. side pouches could use a zipper or some sort of retention system. My wind powder fell out and got lost day 1. Would also be nice if there were lanyards that attach to the bino hooks on both sides so you can just release binos for a quick shot instead of having them dangle and bounce around on the single elastic cord. An integrated range finder case would be nice too.
 
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Matt Cashell

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Feb 25, 2012
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Western MT
great info, swat!

I have several core tops. It is hard to get near them now. Hard to wash the smell out. I still prefer the feel of synthetics to merino, and run Patagonia Capilene, as it is much more smell-resistant.

I am going to keep an eye on my SL5.
 
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fillthefreezer

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Jul 10, 2012
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eatonvile, wa
ive noticed its sometimes hard to manipulate the zipper on my sl5,and it snags up alot. is that when the tear occured or was it overnight or ?
 

Nick Muche

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Mar 21, 2012
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3,329
Location
Alaska
I have to agree with the Sitka Core tops... Even after I wash them I still think they stink! That doesn't happen with the First Lite at all. I have two first lite Llano tops, after some use there will be a few holes here and there, but the overall functionality of the shirt doesn't suffer because of them. Nice writeup, best of luck the rest of the season!
 

bbrown

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Mar 9, 2012
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Fort Collins - CO
I have the same exact thoughts on the Slik Sprint Pro II - love the price, size and weight but the ballhead is a bit small and may need to be upgraded at some point. It did ok with my old Leupy GR 15-30x 50mm but struggles with the Swaro 65mm at full height. If I dont extend the center column or the smaller legs and use it sitting it does ok with the Swaro.

Given how much I was will to spend and pack as far as weight - I think the Sprint Pro II fits the bill as good as could be
 
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swat8888

swat8888

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Joined
Apr 6, 2012
Messages
457
Location
Alaska
In regards to the SL5....no the rip did not occur with the zipper getting caught up...although that was a pain in the butt. I guess its a weight savings issue but why don't tent manufactures use a watertight zipper, similar to the ones used on rain gear instead of that annoying flap that seems to get caught up on every single lightweight tent I've ever used.

It just ripped when I was zipping the tent up for the day, it was not windy, and I had not messed around with the guy lines at all.
 
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