Information and reviews about the latest gear for your motorcycle adventures.

Wombat Country Canvas – Biker Swag

Hi and welcome to this weeks product review, where we are looking at the swags we use on our Gone Touring adventures.

They’re made by Sue Jenson from Wombat Country Canvas at South Kolan just out of Bundaberg in Queensland.

We first spotted Sue’s swags a few years ago at bike show in Rockhampton where a couple of our friends ordered them. They have been more than impressed with them too.

We asked Sue if she could add a few extras to our swags when she was making them and she said it would be no problem. In fact, she offered to make custom make us two special biker swags.

First she suggested a heavy canvas base made from 14oz Cannonball Canvas topped with the 100% waxed cotton Oilskin which would not only provided the best weather proof option but would roll up smaller than a full canvas swag.

She'd told us that few people know that Australia’s famous oilskin fabric was actually born at sea. Sailors at the turn of last century discovered old ship’s sails could be waterproofed with linseed and whale oil and sewn into incredibly protective wet weather gear.

It didn’t take long for fame of the oiled fabric to spread to the land. Australian farmers and stockmen at last had a fabric that would not only keep them dry in the heaviest thunderstorm, but strong enough to withstand the working life on the land. Many an oilskin coat or cape became a bed for the night under the stars or even an emergency shelter for a new born lamb.

It only takes a few minutes erect the swag, and the easiest way once it’s rolled out; is to peg down each corner of the swag.

If it’s a cold breezy night you can fasten the foot end of the swag down with these clips to prevent any draft while still having the head end open for roomy comfortable sleep.

Alternatively you can use it as traditional swag without setting it up or indoors basically as mattress and sleeping bag.

And, its best to fold the oilskin top out of the way when indoors.

Back to the tent setup, simply insert the tent poles and peg them down at each end.

At either end of the swag there is a mosquito proof mesh screen that can be zipped up, when the swag is erected as a tent. Also at there is small veranda at the head end, which keeps the dew off your boots and helmet.

Sue kindly made us these two bags to store our tent poles and pegs so they don’t damage the swag. I’ve also put in a tiny piece of rope and few cloths pegs so I can string a line up between to hang a few clothes to dry.

The mattress is very comfortable and made up of layer of 12mm high-density foam laminated to 50mm convoluted foam so it rolls up tightly.

The inside of the swag has a couple of built in pockets that I can store enough toilettes and personal items for a weekend away with the boys, without needing to take an additional pack full of gear.

I keep a microfiber towel in the swag all the time. Its light weight, dries quickly and stows easily.

Cost wise?
  • Our biker swag with all the little extras was $450 and about $20 freight.
  • The bedding including the minus-5 sleeping bags was $85.00
  • The tent poles were $22.00 and I cut 3 inches off of them so they would roll up in the swag.
  • The tent pegs and ropes were $20.00

How do I rate it?
I give it a ten out of ten. It’s by no means the cheapest swag on the market, its built from first class material and really well put together, which means it will last for years and we use it pretty well every week.

Best of all we get a great night’s sleep rain hail shine.

September 14, 2011

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