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Zak Randell
(zakrandell) - F
Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/17/2006 17:45:54 MST Print View

I'm seam sealing my Tarptent (Henry Shires variety) for an upcoming trip and want to know if I should follow his instructions on placing lines of silicone on the floor of the tent and/or on my sleeping pad (thermrest prolite) as well. Anyone have expierience with this?

Thanks

Z

Jim Ells
(ellsfamily) - F
Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/17/2006 18:18:10 MST Print View

I have a Cloudburst and I would recommend striping the floor. It does keep your bag from sliding around. Thanks for posting, it reminded me to re-apply another coating this spring!
Jim Ells

Jim Colten
(jcolten)

Locale: MN
Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/17/2006 19:45:28 MST Print View

I've used this setup to stay on a sylnylon groundcloth under floorless TarpTents. Since taking that picture I moved the middle strap and added a fourth strap and also added other diagonals to hold a 48 inch Prolite 3 pad. It worked quite well.

Regarding silicone strips on sylnylon, I've lost the source but a couple years ago I read a suggestion to use 1 part G.E. Silicon Sealant II diluted with 3 parts mineral spirits. That makes a thin mixture that can be used to make a non-skid surface on a good sized area without adding a lot of weight.

Edited by jcolten on 03/17/2006 19:48:39 MST.

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/17/2006 20:09:54 MST Print View

You don't even have to dillute it. Just spread it thinly with a plastic squeegee. If you dilute it, it will weaken significantly. Both GE and Duco's tech departments have discouraged me from doing so. That didn't stop me, so I found out they were right. Tear strength tanked.
Duco 100% silicone automotive/marine is as good as GE. And lots cheaper.

Ken Ross
(kross) - MLife
Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/17/2006 20:59:46 MST Print View

I use this method. It's easy to apply, dries quickly, eliminates slipperiness, and improves water resistance.

Phil Barton
(flyfast) - MLife

Locale: Oklahoma
Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/18/2006 10:27:38 MST Print View

Zak, I've applied the strips exactly as described by Henry Shires. The floor is less slippery. I've had no problems with wear. It was quick and easy to apply the diluted silicone caulk as recommended.
Phil

Zak Randell
(zakrandell) - F
Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/19/2006 10:34:25 MST Print View

Thanks for the tips guys.

What about just putting the silicone strips on the bottom of my Thermarest? Will this have the same effect?

Thanks

Jim Colten
(jcolten)

Locale: MN
Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/19/2006 11:45:42 MST Print View

Vick,

That didn't stop me, so I found out they were right. Tear strength tanked.

Pls elaborate. Are you saying that you painted thinned Silicon Sealer to silnylon and that before/after tear strength tests showed a marked decrease in tear strength ?

Edited by jcolten on 03/19/2006 11:46:16 MST.

Zak Randell
(zakrandell) - F
Re: Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/20/2006 04:48:06 MST Print View

Anyone want to comment on applying just to my Thermarest?

Thanks

Zak

Vick Hines
(vickrhines) - F

Locale: Central Texas
Re: Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/20/2006 14:09:34 MST Print View

Jim,
The treatment did not affect the tear strength of the fabric. What happened was that the tear strength of the coating was decreased. It tended to rub off easier and wherever I got it too thick, it would crack and come off - even though it was still rubbery. That's what the tech support guys said would happen.

What Duco said was, silicone sealant is a polimerizing resin that is formulated in different weights for different applications. What you normally get as a sealant/adhesive is thick enough to stay in place without running while it cures. Silicone adhesive does not actually dissolve in organic solvents. Instead, organic solvents such as mineral spirits turn the resin into a slurry, separating the molecules of resin with molecules of solvent. When the resin starts to cure, it does not have as many bonding sites available. It will still cure, but will not form as many cross-linked long chain molecules as it will when uncontaminated. Therefore, it is weaker.

Frank Ramos
(frprovis) - F
Re: Re: Re: Silicone strips in Tarptent? on 03/20/2006 15:49:10 MST Print View

Anyone want to comment on applying just to my Thermarest?

If you are planning to sleep in a tent, such that you might want to position yourself a few inches to the side or front or rear depending on the bumps in the ground, then putting some sort of sticky stuff on the thermarest might be better, since otherwise you would have to extend the strips across the entire surface of the tent floor, thus adding weight. For a thermarest, seam-grip would probably be better than silicone.

If you are using a bivy, then normally the mattress always goes in the same exact position and you shuffle the bivy around according to the bumps on the ground. In t his case, it is better to put the sticky stuff on the bivy. In particular, you can trace a strip of sealer where you want the top of the thermrest or other mattress to be, which makes it simpler to get your mattress in the proper position at night.

Edited by frprovis on 03/20/2006 15:49:43 MST.