Forum Index » GEAR » Tarptent Notch vs Lightheart solo vs SMD skyscape trekker

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Larry M
(Maethros) - MLife

Locale: Mid South
Re: Notch (mesh vs solid) on 05/10/2012 11:31:26 MDT Print View

Here in Arkansas, I always pitch an outer. The weather here changes very fast.

I will be in the Rockies next month so I'll have a chance to see how well the partial does in the cold.

Nigel Healy
(nigelhealy) - F

Locale: San Francisco bay area
Re: Laser Comp / Laser Photon vs Notch on 05/10/2012 11:38:05 MDT Print View

"Above the tree line?... If the Notch would have additional guy out points at the top of the poles"

This has been discussed. TT will fit one or you can fit one yourself. I did the latter, others ordering are doing the former.

" and at the midpoint of the edges of the diamond shape"

This has been discussed in other forums. One posted that TT have offered to fix these if you ask, exactly how its done not known. If I were doing it I'd attach a semi-circle of sturdy cloth to the inside of the fly at the mid-way and attachment point a little above with a loop down with sliplock down to the peg, but that's only mind's eye idea.

"With only 4 anchor points I'm not free of worries that my lightweight gear will get airborne during a severe storm though."

Ditto. I fitted the above and got some Dyneema for guys, but been too busy since to assemble with some pegs and see what does. You can attach external from the fly via this plus you can fit internally to the top of trekking poles which can you can at any direction within the fly, such as towards the head/foot ends.

"(Please let me know if you have experience with the Notch in stormy conditions.)"

Will do but it needs one to be "lucky" to have weather that bad. I suspect it will take some months before owners give more hoolie experiences with the Notch.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Re: Laser Comp / Laser Photon vs Notch on 05/10/2012 12:07:02 MDT Print View

I don't see why one couldn't simply attach a guyline through each of the side vents and attach them to each trekking pole. Would likely be a stronger attachment as well.

Larry M
(Maethros) - MLife

Locale: Mid South
Re: Laser Comp / Laser Photon vs Notch on 05/10/2012 12:19:18 MDT Print View

David said: "I don't see why one couldn't simply attach a guyline through each of the side vents and attach them to each trekking pole. Would likely be a stronger attachment as well."

This is exactly what I do. I have two 6-foot lengths of triptease line with bowlines at one end to loop around the top of my trekking poles when I need extra guying.

Roger B
(rogerb) - MLife

Locale: Here and there
Guyline through the top vents on 05/10/2012 13:00:13 MDT Print View

Which is exactly what I intend to do next week, when and if needed.

Anthony Weston
(anthonyweston) - MLife

Locale: Southern CA
tarptent moment on 05/11/2012 02:00:13 MDT Print View

Another option might be to keep the Tarptent Moment that you like and it's a great tent and then just purchase a 4oz cuben solo to go over the tent so in a heavy rain you don't get mist coming thru.

Nigel Healy
(nigelhealy) - F

Locale: San Francisco bay area
Re: Guyline through the top vents on 05/11/2012 11:09:52 MDT Print View

I intend to put guys internal to the vestibule from the trekking pole but not as described.

There a number of reasons to attach externally:

1) I intend to use with the lighter+smaller tent poles in some situations and attaching guy externally as shown allows the vestibules to be fully opened and tent to stay erect and then zipped close without adjustment of the guy and at the same time have that guy further away.

2) attaching a guy to the pole through the tent will wear the vent from rubbing, unless you orientate at a specific angle which the ground pegging options might not allow.

3) attaching a guy to the pole is holding the pole in place but it is after the force of wind on the fly has been transmitted to the pole so you're maximising the stress at the pole-fly contact point which is where the plastic circular thingy (technical term) is.

4) Symmetry. This is a 4-peg tent, with 2 each at 4 corners, if you feed through the vents you are forced into rubbing the vent area at a tension, or angling and reduce the force-reducing benefit at the vestibule peg.

5) peg angle. To get the most horizontal guy possible to produce the most horizontal peg forces, you need to go out some distance, you can't do that through the vent, there is no horizontal line-of-sight.

6) I intend to do some internal guys but this is for the head/foot direction internal to the vestibule to reduce the forces on the head/foot pegs. The external guy reduces force on the vestibule peg.

Edited by nigelhealy on 05/11/2012 11:28:23 MDT.

Cas Berentsen
(P9QX) - MLife
Modified Notch? on 05/11/2012 16:33:40 MDT Print View

Hurricane proof modified Notch?

mod Notch is a slim Stratospire 1

Oops ....

Take a (slim) stratospire 1 (see post below)

Edited by P9QX on 05/11/2012 17:25:30 MDT.

Henry Shires
(07100) - F - M
re: Modified Notch? on 05/11/2012 16:45:59 MDT Print View

That's the StratoSpire design (which you can stake as indicated if you like).


Cas Berentsen
(P9QX) - MLife
re: Modified Notch? on 05/11/2012 17:31:22 MDT Print View



Of course I could argue that the width/length aspect ratio of my modification is much closer to the Notch than to the Stratospire 1 resulting in a reduced weight etc. To be honest I entirely overlooked the Stratospire 1 and only saw the Stratospire 2, making my post a sort of redundant ....

Judy Gross
(heartfire) - F
LightHeart Solo Vs LightHeart SoLong 6 on 05/12/2012 08:25:01 MDT Print View

@ Mike Sobr:

Disclaimer: I am LightHeart Gear

The Solo and SoLong 6 do have the same square footage, but it is configured differently. The Solo is a diamond shape base and the tips, while good for storage are not livable space. But this is what allows it to be a fully double walled tent (I guess that definition is IMHO, not Franco's). The SoLong 6 is 'squared off' at the ends AND, the corners are boxed off at 8 inches - this 8 inch box is what gives it the volume. If you imagined the end walls sloping down to the ground, you would not be able to get your head or feet within probably 10 inches of the end of the floor because they would touch the end walls.

The 2 tents weigh about the same because they use about the same amount of fabric -again, it's just configured differently, the end walls of the SoLong 6 are really part of the side walls of the Solo. The mesh doors, windows in the SoLong are a bit smaller than the Solo, there is less zipper in the SoLong etc.

Weights for both tents change a smidgen here and there as I try different options out. Recently I made 2 identical tents, in 2 different color ways, one tent was exactly 1 ounce heavier than the other! different fabric colors (all the same brand silnylon) have different 'hands'. This has to do with the dying process and the dyes used.

Judy - LightHeart Gear

Mike Sobr

Locale: Southeaster
Thanks on 05/12/2012 11:51:59 MDT Print View

Judy ,
Thanks for your time comparing the 2 tents I appreciate it. The Solo has been a great tent as mentioned eliminating alot of the problems I had before in high humidity conditions with other single walled tents and you really got it right with that design and I may have to try out a Solong6 some day.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
On track on 05/14/2012 23:07:06 MDT Print View

Glad to see this very interesting thread back on topic.

I noticed one person (Larry M) said that a NeoAir Large fit in the Notch. That is about my only concern. Though I don't have a large pad, if I go to a new sleep system, and have been thinking about it, I will get a large pad for both comfort and insulation. So please tell me Larry if the pad fit well or if it was shoe-horned in there. I really like this tent and can't think of any other objections to it. Would like to go lighter but want full coverage from the elements and more importantly, bugs.

I'm pretty sure I haven't missed any other contenders. If I have, let me know. The low weight leader, ZPacks makes some neat stuff but I think the Notch will be warmer and it only takes four stakes to set up. Takes more stakes than that for the Hexanet alone.

Nigel Healy
(nigelhealy) - F

Locale: San Francisco bay area
Notch bombproof project on 05/18/2012 15:15:07 MDT Print View

The Scarp out-the-box is very stable, its shape comes through 3 corner strut supports and central hoop pool, supplied with 6 8" Easton pegs and has guy attachments to stiffen the hoop, plus the crossing poles to reduce flutter of the fly and to improve snow loading. It is also over twice the weight of the Notch.

The Notch has corner struts just at the ends and uses vertical poles, either bendy supplied Easton ones or use your own trekking poles.

What I did was:

- sew on external sliplock guy attachments to the external apex near the top of the poles
- loop from the trekking pole, through the vent, parallel to the sleeping area and peg external, about the same distance out as the end-peg on the Notch. Reason to be external is 3-fold, the vent faces one end so you can, to peg beyond the end as that side facing the vent is pointing also to the opening in the vestibule so a shallow angle means that guy is not in your way in exit/entrance, and that will tend to shallow the guy/peg angle so it will have less peg-pulling-upward force on the peg.
- right-angle to the other two guys, feeding internally in the porch, parallel to the sleeping area and finishing inside the vestibule but as the fly is held off the ground at the struts end so you can easily peg in there.

This makes a total of 6 additional pegs, going in each axis parallel to the forces which would pull on the original 4 pegs, total of 10 pegs. That means the 4 original pegs become only to maintain shape, keep the vestibule in shape and the ends in place, the 6 additional pegs actually form shallow triangles which will transmit into the trekking pole.

It is absolutely rock solid, doesn't move at all.

Added weight is obviously not going to Scarp's weight. The Dyneema, used all but about 5ft so must have used 44ft roughly, is 40g for 49f so adds about 36g. 6 pegs though will add more.

I made videos of Scarp, Notch, before/after adding each guy and showing the pegs. I could make the Notch collapse with the optional Easton poles, so they're really for light-winds situations, say up to 20mph.

I used most of a 15M / 49ft of 2mm Dyneema from Exped, the longest cuts being to the vestibule guys because they CAN be longer and because you want them well away to not be in your way and to shallow the guy-peg angle to minimise peg-pulling-up forces.

Project not complete, I made some simple loops on the dyneema which fixes to a narrow spot the 4 guys parallel to the sleeping area, so I'll need some sliplocks to allow some adjustment.

There is one gotcha, the grommet where the pole goes into the apex, the stronger forces being able to be applied can pull the pole out. It might be a problem with my poles, I have the supplied plastic square-ends which more place themselves over rather than into the grommet, that will need watching and possibly I replace the ends with a narrower point so it sits more in the grommet. That's the only problem.

This project, apart from the external sewn on guys, will REDUCE the force on the Notch because any excessive force will get transmitted to the pole and from there to ground via Dyneema.

This project is about being able to always pack the Notch and optionally pack and optionally use additional pegs if required, if its not required you got a 4 peg quick pitch which is going to be fine for 90%+ of nights. I feel more more confident to ignore the weather forecast (which is often wrong and can put you off going outdoors) without carrying a lot more weight.

Vids and pics of Scarp vs Notch and customizations of the Notch
I'll edit to offer the URLs to vids and pics after its uploaded.

Edited by nigelhealy on 05/18/2012 17:34:11 MDT.

J Mole
(MoleJ) - F

Locale: UK
Notch - Great design - flawed by diagonal door/vent placing? on 05/20/2012 06:32:43 MDT Print View

Nigels extra guying looks nice n solid.

I do think the overall design of the Notch (and Stratospires) are quite brilliant. Though flawed by detail for my needs. (UK backpacking - often quite windy - often with heavy rain)

i.e. I think it's a pity that the design has the diagonally opposed doors/vent arrangement. (And a non-solid roofed 'solid inner')

No way to have a non-roof-vented windward end, or sensibly open both/either doors if pointed end into the wind.

In my experience of roof vents,(Scarp and GoliteHex3), in very wet and windy conditions they will let in windblown rain. The windward Notch vent although at one side, would still let blown rain in, and a mesh roof will let that rain through.

(The Scarp sensibly, has equally oriented doors, but IMO could do without the 'windward' roof vent - it has let water through in windy conditions a few times- past the edges of the velcro - not loads, but enough to believe that I'd not want a mesh inner roof as offered in the Notch 'solid' inner)

Nigel Healy
(nigelhealy) - F

Locale: San Francisco bay area
Re: Notch - Great design - flawed by diagonal door/vent placing? on 05/20/2012 10:07:56 MDT Print View

You make a very valid point.

Video of hitting the roof vent with hosepipe here

Edited by nigelhealy on 05/20/2012 11:21:36 MDT.

Warren Greer
(WarrenGreer) - F

Locale: SoCal
Does rain really on 05/20/2012 21:40:43 MDT Print View

fall like that? Even in strong winds, it looks like the shower from the hose is going more vertical than sideways (based on the shadow of the hose as shown in the video). Probably would have been better with a nozzle that casts a more rain-like shower as well. The test may be fair for the video-makers area (England it appears), but where I live rain doesn't blow sideways that long. -Good idea with the velcro though. Minimal weight and cost to take care of this if you have this concern.

Nigel Healy
(nigelhealy) - F

Locale: San Francisco bay area
Re: Does rain really on 05/20/2012 23:13:42 MDT Print View

So it was a bit of fun, and hopefully a fun video?

I think these problems require a rare set of circumstances and so tend to happen for a small fraction of camped nights. Typically folks will not go camping in the weather forecast of heavy rain and rain for a sustained period. However, if it did happen, the consequences will be unpleasant, so it would be useful to have a solution.

In all seriousness this was too-bad a test, real-world would not produce that angle of rain at that velocity able to go at speed in volume right at the vent and be hitting the underside of the roof. So it was an unfair test.

However.... it does in a few seconds show a type of problem which will happen eventually, which is the following. In windy rain, the rain hits the fly and splashes in all directions, the slope of the fly against the wind, produces an up+over airflow, so some of the splashes get a bit of wind help pushing up fighting gravity, producing a spitting of small splashes through the vent. The vent itself is funneling air through, increasing the upward flow. In the right conditions over time this will be quite a bit of water entering the shelter. As the Notch's vent opening is only slightly above the vent, I can forsee a bit of spitting from splashes getting in, but not with the velocity a hosepipe can produce!

I certainly found it much easier to get splashes in the Scarp's vents.

The Notch has a unique opportunity and a unique problem I need to figure out. The Notch has a "low fly mode" (shown here) which TT calls "storm mode" (I think)

You'd only have it like that in strong wind situations, because in lower air velocity condensation is the problem. Strong wind is what will produce "uphill rain". Notch in "storm mode", the fly is tilted more vertical, making rain tend to bounce downwards more and less goes uphill than in "high fly mode". Steeper sides, the wind is tending to go around more than up+over due to the more vertical fly, the vent is correspondingly tilted down following the fly, so the part of the fly which is being hit by rain is lower down, increasing the distance that rain has to flow up a steeper hill. So I think this artificial hosepipe test will give a better outcome if the Notch was pitched in "storm mode". That bit is the opportunity, the Notch in storm mode will tend to reduce the vent as a vulnerability.

The problem with "storm mode" is the angle of the peg's attachment, I invite you to see the angles of the fly, in that mode is practically vertical, when combined with heavy rain, the ground in this type of heavy rain will be becoming sodden immediately where is that poor peg, all pegs which are right next to the fly suffer that problem, as all the rain hitting that side of the tent runs to ground at the fly, and I have complete confidence that peg will become loose in sodden earth eventually and be lifted out of the ground eventually resulting in tent collapse. The answer obviously is the guy attachments which are further from the fly, they don't get as concentrated a soaking, ground has more chance to drain the rain than the peg next to the fly and they have a shallower angle from the guy and so stronger ground and less force to pull it vertically. All tents I've used have guys away from the fly, they relief the force the peg at the fly has to withstand and both extends the duration that peg will last, hopefully past the end of the rain (windy rain blows away quicker), and if that peg did come partially out, the guys will keep the tent in its shape.

That then presents the problem of getting the guys out through that vent, so you can't really close it to lock-down the vent to seal against uphill rain.

I have a few problems to resolve with my "Notch bombproof" mind's eye problem:
- if I close the vent then the guy I feed through to the right will struggle, it will tend to open the vent and by definition in that kind of wind in that direction to the tent, you need the extra guys to keep the tent on the ground anyway
- I don't think the guy attachment stitched external will last, its simply not attached to enough of the fly, but the angle of the vent precludes coming too parallel to the vestibule peg through the vent from the pole.
- I think I'm seeing a problem with anything which is holding the pole too rigid, which is what will happen with Dyneema, the wind will hit say the head-end of the tent and the Silnylon will stretch under the force and without guys on the pole, the pole will sway with tent, which will be annoyingly noisy. But if the pole will not budge with strong guys, it is held rigid so I see the pole being pulled out of the grommet and tearing a hole in the roof, so there are limits of using pole-attached guys.

I have a mind's eye modification. More to come. I'm sure the next step won't be the last one.

So far from garden tests I've learned to not rely on the Easton poles that's saved me from a potential big problem. All my other garden tests are somewhat artificial and of less value.

sean neves
(Seanneves) - M

Locale: City of Salt
Just figure I'd chime in on the Solo Wedge on 06/18/2012 14:07:57 MDT Print View

A year or so ago, I emailed Judy about her tents on a Sunday at about 5pm. I use carbon Z poles from Black Diamond and wanted to know if they would be compatible with her tents. She said yes and modded out the upper support to use with my Z-poles, sewed the Wedge option in in my color choice and mailed it the next day at 8am. Service like that matters.

On the tent: I have around 500 miles (50 nights or so) in mine in everything from driving summer sleet/snow at 12000 feet in the San Juans to sweltering evenings in Zion in September to sideways 80mph (not kidding) sandstorms in Grand Gulch and it has not wobbled one bit. Condensation has not been an issue as I am separated like a double wall. I have had some snow and sand blown in but that's to be expected. I am more than happy. Great space, the wedge option is priceless and it can easily be set up in the rain without getting the inside wet.

A note on fixed pole lengths: the Z-poles have a small permanent basket on the tip, so the original size Judy sent didn't work. So I clipped the pvc pipe things. 10 second job. A bunch of friends ordered one after seeing mine in action. I love it.

Dave U
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Rockies
Re: Just figure I'd chime in on the Solo Wedge on 06/18/2012 14:38:56 MDT Print View

I wonder if she would offer a solid inner option like the Notch for windy conditions like you describe?