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Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 08:09:24 MDT Print View

Sorry in advance for the thread jack but I have a couple quick questions about the Solo Plus/Twin which are probably unworthy of a new thread.

1. I've always been enamored with these two tarps but I was under the impression after reading a few BPL threads that at 6'3" and using an Exped Synmat, I'd be too tall for these two tarps (possibly ok solo in the Twin.) Stick's Blog's Facebook Page (that's a mouthful) recently shared a picture of two adults and three children squeezing into the Solo Plus which has given me an opportunity to reconsider these shelters. Anyone using this tarp who is my height or taller care to weigh in on this? I’d occasionally have one of my kids or a dog in the shelter with me.

2. Many of the complaints about the Hexamid Tent seem to be about the mosquito netting picking up debris and Charlie Dog hair. I believe the Bear Paw inner nets are roughly 11oz (please correct me if I’m wrong) which seems to defeat the purpose of buying this shelter in the first place. The Sea to Summit Nano Mosquito Net is only 2.9oz for a single and 4.85oz for a double:

http://www.rei.com/product/849594/sea-to-summit-nano-mosquito-pyramid-insect-shield-net-shelter

Has anyone tried using this mosquito net in the Hexamid with a polycryo ground sheet?

Edit typo

Edited by IDBLOOM on 05/02/2013 08:12:34 MDT.

Jennifer Mitol
(Jenmitol) - M

Locale: In my dreams....
Re: Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 08:15:24 MDT Print View

Hey Ian, CharlieDog hair is a special breed...I'm not sure other creatures would be as bad. I actually have not really had too much of an issue of the hexamid netting picking up TOO much debris; yeah, it's some, but not such that I would discount this shelter.

Just for me, I think it's great. For the dog, the condensation issue is far more problematic than the debris at the bottom (chuck likes to get up, walk around the perimeter of the tent, spin around, come wake me up, stretch, shake, rub all over the tent walls again....you get my drift). My complaints with that tent are very specific to my dog...who is huge, by the way. He only weighs 70# but looks like he weighs 90...it's all hair!

Anyway, I actually really like the hexamid....

Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 08:32:04 MDT Print View

Thanks Jennifer. I like the idea of the Hexamid as a tent for keeping my future dog from wandering off after a squirrel at 0-dark-30. My understanding of how this tent works is that water will run down the mosquito netting and that the ground sheet needs to be on top of it to keep me dry. Stands to reason that I could use two polycryo ground sheets; one on top of the netting to keep the water off and another below (as needed) to keep it clean?

My gear budget is the last thing money trickles down to in my house so I have to make these purchases carefully!

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 09:24:20 MDT Print View

"one on top of the netting to keep the water off and another below (as needed) to keep it clean?"

I would recommend against putting a ground sheet below the netting. It just doesn't get that dirty/shakes out pretty well. With a ground sheet under the netting, the water that runs down the netting will collect and pool under you instead of just soaking into the ground.

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 09:27:11 MDT Print View

"I think it could potentially help in two areas, but would only see myself using it in a real emergency."

But isn't the Hexamid a pole-forward design, so the pole pocket isn't a top center but rather to the front of the shelter? I'd think trying to use an inverted V would increase the likelihood of the rear pole slipping in high wind and going through the netting.

Don't know this, just speculating.

Michael Gillenwater
(mwgillenwater) - M

Locale: Seattle area
Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 10:02:16 MDT Print View

Some processes are just to complex for simple reasoning, and so are only really answered empirically. Anyone have a wind tunnel in their garage?

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 16:34:38 MDT Print View

Sorry Jason, I just meant I didn't see HOW you'd use a second pole with the hexamid solo because of how it's designed.

Jennifer -Sorry if I came across as a bit snippy. You are quite right I am not sure if it would really work in practice. I have only had a quick look on one occasion. Next time I pitch the Hexamid I will have another look. The whole idea might turn out to be total pants as the British say.

Ian - have you seen the Hexamid long.

Matthew Reese
(Bradktn)
z poles and Hexamid? on 05/02/2013 17:36:21 MDT Print View

To add to my original list of questions, Does anyone have experience with the Black Diamond Z poles and the Hexamid Solo Plus? I'd hate to have to change poles, but with a short tip section and a fixed mini-basket, I'm not sure there is enough purchase for a pole jack. Mine measure 120cm, about 47 inches.

Bradley Attaway
(AttaboyBrad) - F

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Why not a twin? on 05/02/2013 17:52:16 MDT Print View

I've used the Hexamid Twin with my Z-Poles with great success. I use the 130cm poles so I drop the handle down (as though I were collapsing the poles, but without separating the sections) which gives me a perfect height for the front pole.

The recommended front pole height is 122cm for the twin (several inches shorter than the solo plus), so your fully extended pole should work just fine. Weight penalty for the twin over solo plus is under an ounce, and the cost doesn't get bumped much.

That extra space might be worth the half ounce and Jackson even without having to buy new poles.

Also, to answer Ian's question on size: I'm 6'5" and have shared the hexamid twin several nights with other adults of various more normal sizes. I wouldn't mind if the shelter were a bit longer, but it's never been a problem for me.

Edited by AttaboyBrad on 05/02/2013 17:57:19 MDT.

Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 17:58:27 MDT Print View

"Ian - have you seen the Hexamid long."

I have. It looks like a tedious tarp to pitch but that's probably just misperception on my part as it's only one more step than the Twin.

Jason Elsworth
(jephoto) - M

Locale: New Zealand
ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 18:57:47 MDT Print View

It looks like a tedious tarp to pitch

That's why I didn't go for one.

Mark Verber
(verber) - MLife

Locale: San Francisco Bay Area
Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 20:10:15 MDT Print View

> It looks like a tedious tarp to pitch

It took me 3 set-ups one afternoon to master the hexamid... mostly around what was the best angle / length for the pole. Now I can pitch it in under 2 minutes so long as the ground with take stakes. Now that I have used it for awhile, I typically get the stake position right first time (no need to move them to get the hexamid taut). I have also found the hexamid one of the easiest shelter to pitch tautly.

--Mark

Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: MidAtlantic
Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 20:25:55 MDT Print View

Mark, they're talking about the long, not the regular Hexamid.

Matt Weaver
(norcalweaver) - F

Locale: PacNW
Re: Re: Re: ZPacks Hexamid questions on 05/02/2013 20:54:11 MDT Print View

"I've always been enamored with these two tarps but I was under the impression after reading a few BPL threads that at 6'3" and using an Exped Synmat, I'd be too tall for these two tarps (possibly ok solo in the Twin.) Stick's Blog's Facebook Page (that's a mouthful) recently shared a picture of two adults and three children squeezing into the Solo Plus which has given me an opportunity to reconsider these shelters. Anyone using this tarp who is my height or taller care to weigh in on this? I’d occasionally have one of my kids or a dog in the shelter with me"

I'm 6'4", couple hundred pounds, I find the solo to be an excellent fit for me with my xlite pad. Spacious no, but good fit for me and my small amount of gear yes.

Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
You guys are all right! on 05/02/2013 21:15:42 MDT Print View

This was really informative. Thanks for sharing your experiences with this shelter.

William Chilton
(WilliamC3) - MLife

Locale: Antakya
Pitching the Hexamid Long on 05/03/2013 04:03:49 MDT Print View

I have the Hexamid Long and the Twin. I used to have the Solo+. To be honest, they're all pretty much the same in terms of how easy they are to set up. If anything, the Twin is a little more difficult than the others, as the height and positioning of the rear pole has quite an effect on the pitch, plus the rear pole is the also the centre rear tie-out, and in my experience, it is getting the balance correct between the front and rear centre tie-outs which is the most important factor in getting a good pitch with all the Hexamids.
With the Long, it's true that if you're using trekking poles for all three supports, then it means you have to adjust all three pole to the correct length. On the other hand, if you have three trekking poles, then it means that there are at least two of you to share the adjusting. If you are using the carbon fibre poles for the sides, then there is very little difference between the Solo+ and the Long in terms of ease of pitching.
The Long gives an incredible amount of extra usable internal space over the Twin and the Solo+.
One question I have about both the Solo+ and the Long is which is the best way to orient them in the wind. Conventional wisdom seems to be to face the Hexamids with their backs to the wind. The Solo+ and the Long, however, seem to me to offer much less profile to the wind if they are oriented sideways. Any comments?

M B
(livingontheroad) - M
hex on 05/03/2013 07:31:11 MDT Print View

The hexamid is a minimal shelter, not a tent.

One thing I do like about it, is that the pole is inside the sleeping are, not outside.

Thats because I actually can hang my pack from it, with my unused gear and even foodbag in it. Keeps it out of way in a rodent free space.

I can think of several ways to greatly improve the hexamid. Problem is, they all add weight. The goal of the shelter is to be as light as possible. There ARE compromises made.

Edited by livingontheroad on 05/03/2013 07:32:19 MDT.

Ian Van Halen
(IDBLOOM) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: hex on 05/03/2013 11:39:01 MDT Print View

"The hexamid is a minimal shelter, not a tent."

I think it's just a matter of semantics. Zpacks labels the version with a net as a tent to distinguish it from the tarp version.

Joel Benford
(Morte66) - F - M

Locale: Surrey flatlands, England
Re: Re: hex on 05/03/2013 12:11:14 MDT Print View

As a prospective hexamid owner, I wonder if anybody would like to comment on my impression of it:

In terms of shelter, the mesh Hexamid (mexamid?) seems a lot like mesh inner + fly tents. It'll keep most rain and snow out unless they can get around corners, which they occasionally can. It'll keep most condensation off, but not perfectly. It keeps bugs out. It won't keep wind out of your sleeping bag like a fabric inner+outer tent, or a whatever+bivy. It won't raise the temperature like 2 layers of fabric, which may be a good or bad thing.

In this, it seems about the same as a Skyscrape or Rainbow or Solomid + inner. The differences are space, vestibules, convenience of egress, and so on.

The four tents above seem quite different when compared to each other. But they're very similar when you throw in 8x5 tarps, Hilleberg Aktos, eVent bivvies, hammocks et al.

Edited by Morte66 on 05/03/2013 12:42:05 MDT.

M B
(livingontheroad) - M
hex on 05/03/2013 13:29:25 MDT Print View

It wont block wind, that would compromise ventilation and lead to condensation.

It will be prone to rain splatter and spray intruding on your sleeping area, especially near the front corners where the beak is attached and there is no overhang.

Rain will run down the mesh, and if you touch it, you will get wet, or your groundcloth will, or your sleeping bag will.

It is a small shaped tarp, with a little bug netting attached. You must be comfortable with water dripping or running only inches from your gear.

The netting is fairly durable as a floor, and protects the cuben or other lightwt groundsheet somewhat.

It has fixed guyline lenghts, and shape. It doesnt adapt well to non-flat surfaces due to this. It doesnt raise or lower well either. You can accomplish a bit, by wrapping the guylines around the stake to effectively shorten them.

The tarp is only a couple inches from your face in lying position unless you prop up the guyout with a stick for more room, like the extended version does.

The shape at top where mesh is under tension, and the zippers dont work well together. It takes two hands to work the zippers across the curve at the top, which you must do to get the opening open to go thru, and to close again. I left a gap one night recently, and had a mouse come in mine . They can climb all over the mesh very very well.

Edited by livingontheroad on 05/03/2013 13:35:54 MDT.