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Why are Fjällräven sleeping bags so expensive?

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The Fjällräven POLAR -20 REG has the following specs:

  • 850 EUR
  • 1650g and 25cm x 40cm volume
  • EN/ISO: -12°C comfort, -20°C limit, -42°C extreme
  • 95/5 Down; 800 cuin

The MARMOT - Never Summer seems to be comparable:

  • 297 EUR on Amazon
  • 1450g and 22cm x 46cm volume
  • EN/ISO: -12°C comfort, -20°C limit, -42°C extreme
  • Down; 650+ cuin

MOUNTAIN EQUIPMENT - Kryos

  • 485 EUR
  • 2335g and 29 cm x 25 cm x 23 cm volume
  • EN/ISO: -10°C comfort, -18°C limit, -39°C extreme
  • 90/10 Down; 800+ cuin

They also look similar. The Fjällräven sleeping bag has a bit of fur on the top, but besides that and the difference in fill power and weight I don't note a difference. And as the EN/ISO rating is the same, I think the difference in fill power does not matter. (Right?)

Why is Fjällräven 285% of the price of Marmot? Is there any other quality difference I can't see? (Reading Is buying an expensive sleeping bag better? didn't help)

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This post was sourced from https://outdoors.stackexchange.com/q/21328. It is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

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4 answers

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As with many brands you pay a premium for the name.

Part of that is because the brand has a good reputation and will make sure that all they sell are up to brand standards, part is that they guaranty their products to perform as given for the products.

Part of the extra money will go to special features which may or may not show, like fur or a better class of zipper.

And it may be that you are comparing sleeping bags that not really match the same specifications, but the differences mentioned in some comments should still not justify the price difference unless one of them was a top known brand and the other not.

But I have always chosen for a cheaper brand or unbranded item that performs as required, not paying the big brand premium.

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This post was sourced from https://outdoors.stackexchange.com/a/21329. It is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

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The particular Fjällräven brand has a bit of a peculiar story - it started with backpacks that were originally designed as very functional and practical in the 1960s. From the 1960s to 1990s, the brand was mainly used by people who appreciated outdoor lifestyle and practical use, more so than fashion. It was definitely not a brand used by the cool kids, quite the opposite. The brand was even associated with left wing political ideals in Sweden at some point.

However, in the 2000s, various retro and eco trends gave the brand a massive renaissance, where it suddenly went from completely unfashionable to fashionable and trendy, particularly among women. So now the products aren't just practical and of good quality, but suddenly also fashionable at the same time. Which means that they can charge a higher price.

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+1
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As for the other brands, I cannot say but Fjällräven has a history of being commited to reducing its impact on the environment.

They claim full traceability, no live plucking and reduced waste. You can find more information about their down in particular on their website: Our Down Promise.

Patagonia, for example, make similar claims about their down but their sleeping bags may not be as expensive as Fjällräven's: Traceable Down Insulation - Patagonia.

Other factors might be the build quality or labor cost, things that might not show in a simple rating and that you'll only be able to judge in person. That is not to say that a cheaper alternative won't cover your needs.

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This post was sourced from https://outdoors.stackexchange.com/a/24793. It is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

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That is not unreasonably more expensive. Besides just higher profit margins, there are a lot of other factors going into the price besides "cost of goods".

Chief among these factors is the higher and more specialized/qualified labor costs, leading to higher construction quality and durability. There is also field testing - more of which costs much more. The same argument applies to the individual raw material suppliers - there are premium and budget qualities and suppliers for most materials. This recursively adds up to the final price.

The specifications you copied do not say anything about the quality of the outer fabric (how breathable and water proof), the kind of stitching, zippers, additional padding at the chest, etc.

This is similar to how a similarly specced laptop from Macbook-Pro/Thinkpad T or X series/Elitebook will cost a lot more than a budget one, even by the same manufacturer (Lenovo Thinkpad T vs Ideapad).

In practical terms, if the intended use is only occasional, the cheaper variant might suffice. If however, one wants the item to perform equally reliably when it is a few years old, the more expensive is a better variant. For instance, something made for long-term regular military use at high altitude will necessarily be of significantly higher quality (and thus, more expensive) than something to be used by a hobbyist using the gear for a week every year.

All that being said, without a personal inspection of the goods, it is still possible you're being ripped off. Or there's a discount or clearance sale.

As a counter example, look up Siachen sleeping bags (-40 celsius) by Gipfel, an Indian manufacturer, costing over EUR 350. Being an Indian manufacturer (with a lower cost base), one would expect it to be a lot cheaper than the EU based ones. But this is still more than the MARMOT.

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This post was sourced from https://outdoors.stackexchange.com/a/21354. It is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0.

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