> Does your 18 oz figure include all the cords, stakes and
> "floor" or just the main body?
18oz for main body and all cordage
4oz for the 9'x9' sheet used for the disposable floor
1oz for 22 wire stakes (plenty and then some)
1oz for dry sack that I put it all in
> What kind of size does it all pack down to?
If you want to get crazy compact. I used to pack the
mylar tent body, cordage, and stakes in a quart ziplock bag!
I packed the floor into a second quart ziplock.
After a few trips I came to my senses and realized I was
spending more time getting the tent into the ziplock than
it took to take the tent down. So I got "less crazy"
and just put the stakes, cordage, floor, and body all in
a single small drysack in the order shown in the article.
The dry sack is 11"x7"x3" and I can squeeze the air out
AFTER putting everything into the sack to make it smaller.
Much faster, easier to pack up the tent this way.
> Was the duct tape used clear for purely aesthetic reasons?
No. You want to use "Scotch Transparent Duct Tape"
for the following reasons:
- The clear duct tape is 6X more UV resistant, i.e. it will
last six times longer than gray tape when exposed to the
- The gray tape has cloth reinforcement, which you can tear with your fingers.
The clear duct tape uses a mesh of plastic filaments (like strapping tape) which you can't tear. You have to cut the tape.
- The plastic reinforcements provide a stronger base for
sewing through. The sewing thread is going in and out around these plastic filaments
- The Scotch brand uses waterproof glue. I used some really
cheap tape on earlier prototypes and found that not all vendors
use waterproof glue.
And one other note. I used 1" wide strips of the tape in
building the tents. I cut the 2" wide duct tape roll in half
with an Exacto knife.
> What type of condensation issues did you have
I have had no condensation issues with the tent. I have been surprised, but I recently found out why in Mariah Walton's 2004 BPL article on Night Time Condensation on Tarp and Tent Fabrics, she first determined that tarp-walls cool below air temperature because they emit infrared radiation. She subsequently followed up this observation by testing several aluminized materials, such as a mylar blanket, that do not emit in the infrared. Theoretically this means that these materials do not cool below air temperature. In practice, she found there was no condensation on the mylar blanket during the twelve night testing period!
At Philmont the air is so dry that condensation was not an
issue. In Tennessee, where I'm from, humidity and rain are
the norm. In Tennessee I have avoided condensation issues by
- leaving the rain flaps rolled up when not raining provides huge cross-flow ventilation.
- overlap the rain flaps so that they are a couple inches apart so there is still good cross-flow ventilation but rain sheds off.
- heavy blowing rain. Button up the tent tight and keep saying to yourself "it is a lot dryer in here than out there"