Longer life food?

In the words of Prof Farnsworth, Good news everybody.  I just bought a ZIPVAC system from Ray Outdoors for $30.  Comes with a manual pump and 3 x 200 x 170 mm bags and 3 x 260 x 260mm bags.

The revolutionary, resealable vacuum storage system that’s rugged enough for the outdoors type.  Store dry goods away from moisture, seal in freshness for meat, vegetables and other perishables, or protect valuables while you’re in the field.

zipvacIdeal for fishing, camping, bike touring or any outdoor activities you want to protect and preserve.

Features & Specifications:
Store dry goods, Seal in freshness, Manual pump, it’s quick & easy, secure sealing and protect valuables.

You can either buy the battery powered pump or a hand pump, as power is a limited resource when touring I have optioned for the hand pump.  I believe the powered version is recharged via a wall socket.

ZIPVAC Vacuum Starter Kit (Pack 3) 200 x 170 mm bags and (Pack 3) 260 x 260mm bags.
ZIPVAC Gallon Bags (Pack 12) 280 x 300 mm
ZIPVAC Quart Bags (Pack 15) 83 x 225 mm
ZIPVAC Fillet Bags (Pack 20)  220 x 500 mm
ZIPVAC Jumbo Bags (Pack 20) 350 x 370 mm

Zipvac instructions can be downloaded from here, for some reason there are no instructions with the starter kit.

Insert marketing blurb here:

Here is a simple and economical solution – it’s called ZipVac. Our patented resealable bags have triple-layer embossed oxygen barrier that locks flavour in and freezer burn out.

The ZipVac bags are washable and reusable and safe in the dishwasher and Microwave oven.

The ZipVac, you will savour the flavour of the wild, it also keeps the water out of your food or fish fillets when sitting in the cold water in the esky. Don’t go to their website www.zipvac.com.au as they must not have paid for domain name or something, but their NZ site works.

Anyhow watch Patrick D’s video below, it’ll answer almost any question you have.

Katadyn Vario Water Filter

Water Filters.

One of the main concerns for anyone planning a bike tour across the Nullarbor or even any of the desert tracks in Australia or the world is of course water.  Without H2O you don’t go.  This is where water filters come in.

water filter
MSR mini works
water filter
Katadyn Vario

During my interweb trawling for information, I had narrowed my preferred water filter to either the Katadyn Vario or the MSR Miniworks.

While they both work and look similar, weights and size are almost identical.

Obviously going by the title I went with the Katadyn, I think it was the variable water filter settings depending on water quality at the time, longer filter life or quicker output volume.  0.1 micron difference in the filtering is not a real big deal in my eyes.

I went pricing the Katadyn in Australia but they were mostly at least 50% dearer than the rest of the world.  I ended up on Amazon and got it delivered for $105 AUD. (Believe it or not something I wanted on Amazon was actually able to be sent to Australia.)  A well known camping store in OZ wanted $150 without the delivery costs. You do the maths.  Ordered Thursday arvo was in my hand by Wednesday morning.

Below is a video by KatadynKP on youtube.





More sleeping gear

Visited Camping World at Mitchell ACT last week and as well as buying my tent.  I was inspecting their range of sleeping bag liners and whilst they were having a 30% off sale on their sleeping bags unfortunately it didn’t include their liners, but I did get 10% off so better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.

Anyhow the liner I picked out was a Sea to Summit product called Reactor Thermolite Liner.

Manufacturer’s blurb here :

The Reactor is made from Thermolite, a hollow core fiber that provides extraordinary warmth for its weight and remains extremely breathable. Adds up to 15 degrees F / 8 degrees C of warmth to a sleeping bag or, used alone, is the ideal warm weather bag.

  • Lighter weight, more packable than fleece
  • Adds up to 15 degrees F / 8 degrees C of warmth to a sleeping bag
  • Mummy shape with a box foot
  • Draw cord hood with mini cord lock
  • Colour of liner is black
  • Weighs just 8.7oz (250 grams)
  • Packs into its own 75mm x 125mm silk nylon stuff sack








About two weeks ago, the Snowgum sales brochure passed my desk at work. It had this little item in it for $10 Inflatable Pillow down from $34.95 which I wouldn’t have bought at that price.  It’s so bright it can double as a safety device.

Top Shell: 75D Polyester TPU (Orange)pillow
Bottom Shell: 150D Oxford TPU (Grey)
Inner: Diamond Cut Open cell Foam (CFC Free)
Dimensions: 42 x 32 x 12.5 cm
Weight: 200g (including stuff sack)

My touring accommodation

Oztrail Vertex Tent
Well that’s the manufacturer’s spiel on this tent.  I bought this tent from Camping World at Mitchell ACT. What I have found with setting this tent up in my back yard.
  • The floor IMHO is on the thin side.
  • The tent is rated as a 4 season tent.
  • The floor has a good lip on it, so no water should get in. I’ll put a measurement in here later. (approx 200mm high) See photo below.
  • There is two vents in the roof that you can unzip from inside and on the fly there is a velcro patch which allows air in or out.
  • The two entrances (one on each side) can be zipped up with the fabric door or it can just be zipped with just the mesh. Again the fabric can be unzipped from the inside.
  • There’s a clip hanging from the centre of the roof for putting any lights up and I’ll test it later to see how much of the light shines through at night or if the two fabric sheets of the tent block it.
  • The tent doesn’t need to be guy roped down, as it’s free standing.  But if putting the tent up in expected winds then there are plenty of guy rope attachments to the fly.  The fly also has a latch at each corner for quick fastening or pulling down.
  • On the inside of the fly there are 4 velcro strips for fastening the fly to the cross over poles.  These strips are directly beneath the guy rope attachment area on the outer side.
  • On the inside, on two of corners there is a small mesh pocket for putting whatever you need during the night.
The Maker’s Blurb:  The Oztrail Vertex Tent is one of the Outer Limits range of high performance, lightweight tents designed for the budget conscious but serious hiker. 
The Oztrail Outer Limits Vertex Tent will keep you comfortable and protected in any conditions and as they pack down small in size and weight, they are suitable for carrying in your backpack.
• The cross-brace design of this 2 person dome tent creates ample room inside with the bracing pole extending over both entrances.
• This design and the integrated high tensile “Durallium” alloy poles means the Vertex is a sturdy and strong yet lightweight tent.
• The floor is also lightweight but puncture resistant polyester “Taffeta DuraWeave”.
• The fly is made from 68 Denier Ripstop polyester with a water rating of 3000mm.
• Further minimising the weight the insect proof mesh is Ultra-fine 50×50 No-See-Um mesh.
• The Vertex comes in a waterproof dry sack ensuring that it remains dry 
even when you’re not.
Floor Dimensions: 230x160cm
Floor Material: Polyester Taffeta DuraWeave
Fly Canopy Material: 68 Denier Ripstop Polyester
Height At Peak: 105cm
Packed Size: 160x39cm
Pole Material: Durallium alloy
Sleeping Capacity: 2 person
Waterhead Rating: 3000mm
Weight: 2.6kg
Warranty: 1 Yr