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How can I keep my netbook dry? Answered

There's a possibility that in a few months I'll want to have my netbook while living in a tent for a week, which I can't guarantee against leaking or flooding. Thus, the requirement is basically that the netbook remain dry if wherever it is sitting has an inch or so of water on it.

I have a water-resistant neoprene sleeve, but it doesn't seal, so it won't help in submersion.

I've considered a Pelican 1080, which would work brilliantly but costs $70 or more, and a large Ziploc-type bag, which can hardly be beat for cost but is rather crude and doesn't offer the same level of protection. I suppose I'm looking for options somewhere between the two. The netbook is 10.25" x 7" x 7/8"-1 3/8", but something that would let me fit the power brick in too would be great.


Multiple layers of anything will protect better. Two "real" ziplock freezer-weight bags is usually proof against anything but a boating accident. (I say "real" because some of the zipper bags do NOT seal as well as the original. Some do, but don't assume -- if you care, test!)

A classic wet-bag technique is a waterproof bag whose opening is folded over several times and then clamped tightly between two boards or metal braces or whatever to create the seal. It's important not to have wrinkles in the folded section which might create gaps. This is something which could be homebrewed without too much trouble, I think. You may get a better seal if the two halves of the clamp are normally slightly bowed so their ends curve away from each other; that guarantees that in bringing the ends together you've applied pressure everywhere between them (whereas otherwise they might flex outward).

Personal reaction: Even a single ziplock is probably proof against most of what your tent is likely to encounter, if you don't site the tent stupidly. And if that bag stays in your backpack (inside the tent) when the netbook isn't in use, you'll have an additional layer of protection. If your tent is at risk of submersion, you have larger problems than a damaged palmtop.

But unless the palmtop is an essential part of why you're going on this trip -- using it to record scientific findings or compose your articles or something of that sort -- the easiest fix would be to leave it behind. A week isn't that long to be without electronics.

All good advice, thank you. I'd be staying here during the last week of July (hint hint figure it out), where I have wifi, a charging station, and three meals a day, so not exactly roughing it. It does rain, though, and flat places can and do flood. Nothing's even close to definite yet, including taking the netbook, I'm just looking at options in advance. Thanks!

Elevating the netbook above the tent's floor would avoid minor flooding, assuming the tent doesn't blow over. Tent attic bag, inverted milk crate, ...

(Someone I know who regularly does a car-camping week developed a tent bed which consists of a plywood sheet over four milk crates. It elevates her and water-sensitive stuff and gives her storage space underneath for things which can tolerate damp. Not something you can backpack with, but...

For that matter, if you're car (or plane?) camping, you _might_ lock the device in the vehicle when not in use....

honestly I take my laptop with me all of the time (camping in tents) and I have a neoprene sleeve and a gallon ziploc and a large tupper ware that i put it in so it does not get wet

I have a number of dry bags i got from alpkit. com which have kep my electronics dry on Numerous wet walks where my bag has got saturated. They're much more hard wearing and versatile than ziplock bags and much less than 70 dollars. Most camping or outdoors shop stock similar.