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Lightweight tent for Scottish Highlands?
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Greg Mihalik
(greg23) - M

Locale: Colorado
Re: Re: Failure on 06/20/2013 13:36:43 MDT Print View

"One thing you never really get in reviews is how long a tent will last before failing..."

I've been on this forum for about 5 years. I don't recall anyone talking about a tent "failing".

Not saying it can't happen. I'm sure some have had uncomfortable nights in a "wrap-around-tent". I'm sure poor staking/anchoring contributed to a few scary moments. But I can't recall any bent poles, ripped fabric, blown zippers etc. from storm/wind situations.

For the most part UL folks know the limits of the gear.

To bad this forum doesn't support surveys. I know there are 3rd party survey sites out there, but I don't what or where.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Voyager Tent on 06/20/2013 15:57:25 MDT Print View

> One thing you never really get in reviews is how long a tent will last before failing,
Well, that would be impossible.
One person will look after their tent and have it last >10 years.
Another person will be able to trash their tent in <1 year.


Doug I.
(idester) - MLife

Locale: PNW
Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Voyager Tent on 06/20/2013 16:50:39 MDT Print View

"Another person will be able to trash their tent in <1 year."

My tents last longer than that, but my relationships ....... yeah, I can trash them in well under a year.

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Mpment DW & inside crossing pole on 06/20/2013 17:21:15 MDT Print View


The path of a crossing pole placed inside the Moment DW fly will put it about 4 or 5 cm. below the center ridgeline, where the pole sleeve is (unless you get the center section of the crossing pole pre bent to make it higher).

This is no problem, even with TWO crossing poles as I have in my modded Scarp 2. The inner tent still has the same height. What you have with the inner crossing pole(s) on the Moment DW or the Scarp 2 is MUCH more canopy support for snow and wind loads.

As for poles "moving around" inside the fly under wind load, that won't happen if you sew in Velcro cable ties where the Tarptent's exterior pole attatchment reinforcements are. These ties, appropriately shortened, wrap around the crossing pole and hold it in place but habe a bit of give as well unless you wrap them very tightly. These Velcro cable ties are used to hold computer cables together and can usually be found at computer stores.

marc D
(mareco) - M

Locale: Scotland
Re: Re: Re: Failure on 06/20/2013 18:56:36 MDT Print View

"Failing" is maybe the wrong word.

The reason I mentioned it is that I got caught out in a storm, and the tent handled it. I visually inspected the seams, zips, tie outs and poles after, all looked ok. I went out a week later in much lighter winds, and to my surprise, had a pole break. Which makes me think the metal was weakened in the first storm.

I am hiking the Pyrenean High Route later this year for 3 weeks and it crossed my mind that it might be best not to take one of my storm battered tents.

marc D
(mareco) - M

Locale: Scotland
Lightweight tent for the Scottish Highlands? on 09/22/2013 17:12:28 MDT Print View

I was searching earlier in the year for an ultralight tent that could handle very strong winds, after having had a number of broken poles and some uncomfortable nights in previous tents.

I considered the Tarptent Moment, but it wasn't available with the ripstop inner at the time and it looked like it would need quite a few mods for my use. I also considered adapting an existing tent, thinking I could use hiking poles to brace it up somehow, but that didn't work very well.

With a trip to the Pyrenees coming up, I decided to design and make a tent from scratch. I put hiking poles into the design, which act both with and against the tent pole to produce a frame that doesn't move in strong winds.




In this video the winds only got up to about 30 mph, angled side on from the front, but there was no movement of the frame of the tent. The front side panels fluttered a bit, but I have seen added tie-outs to these panels which makes a difference. It's a double walled tent, weighing 960 grams (34oz.)with 6 stakes. The inner tent is 53" wide, enough room for me and the dog, and has a 26" deep vestibule. The hiking pole straps simply tie around the short header pole and it takes 2 minutes to put up. I have been using it for a couple of months now, in gusts up to 50 mph, and it has performed very well.

I think the combination of hiking poles with alloy tent poles works really well. With the wind from the rear, the alloy tent pole acts like a big spring to resist the forces. The 5 sided shape seems to deflect winds from the sides and the hiking poles prevent any distortion from angled front winds. The radius of the alloy tent pole never tightens up like it did on some of my previous tents which is what I think led to their failure.

I haven't seen any tents that use hiking poles and alloy tent poles in combination like this, so maybe I am missing something obvious? After 2 months hard use and a trip over the Pyrenees there doesn't seem to be any sign of weaknesses though. Perhaps a Scottish winter will change that!

I have now used this pole configuration to make another tent, that uses 2 half alloy poles at the front and is freestanding, with a smaller footprint, and is vary stable. Cant wait for the winter to really test it.

Dave -
(FamilyGuy) - F

Locale: Up there
Re: Lightweight tent for the Scottish Highlands? on 09/22/2013 17:18:21 MDT Print View


Edited by FamilyGuy on 02/02/2014 08:27:24 MST.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: @Tarptent
Lightweight tent for Scottish Highlands? on 09/22/2013 17:42:52 MDT Print View

The way I see it is that if you get a strong gust on the trekking pole end, because of the way that panel is made rigid by those poles it might just push the ridge pole enough to snap it.
Guying those handles out will help somewhat.
I would have put the poles inside straight up.

marc D
(mareco) - M

Locale: Scotland
Re: Lightweight tent for Scottish Highlands? on 09/22/2013 17:57:34 MDT Print View

I tried putting the poles inside, but getting a good connection to the ridge pole was not easy, and it was all a bit fiddly. With the hiking poles I am using now, I don't even have to tie the straps to the ridge pole, I just wrap them around the ridge pole and back round the handle until they are tight.

The tent seems stronger with the trekking pole end into the wind, which surprised me. The ridge pole hasn't been bent yet, but with strong winds I always use the guy points built into the head of the tent. I can also guy back from the back panel and around the hiking poles if need be, or even directly from the hiking pole straps, which allows for any wind direction.

Sam Farrington
(scfhome) - M

Locale: Chocorua NH, USA
Your MYOG tent on 09/22/2013 18:12:55 MDT Print View

Very impressive. And original to boot. And most important, it works!
Lots of questions, but will just ask you to consider posting this and future creations on the MYOG forum. Love the details, especially the ones relevant to getting the weight down and sourcing materials. Did wonder how you managed to maintain the arc on the alloy pole, though.

Noted: "You mentioned experimenting with reinforcing the joints at the apex. Would that prevent the poles behaving like this? Another thought I had was if the joint at the apex was flexible ..."

As it happens, came up with a possible solution along just those lines, which is to use solid fiberglass for the ferrules connecting the arched carbon poles to Easton 340 elbows at the two apexes.
The hope is that the glass, being considerably more elastic than the carbon or alloy, will flex under heavy wind loads, keeping the carbon from fracturing near the elbows, and then return the tent to its normal shape.

Without any engineering background, it takes years of head scratching to build these tents; so just love to see masters at work. Please keep us posted.

marc D
(mareco) - M

Locale: Scotland
Re: Your MYOG tent on 09/22/2013 18:34:35 MDT Print View


I will post the plans and details on the MYOG forum if that will be of any help to anyone, it will take me a day or so to do it though.

Getting the arc on the tent pole was the most difficult thing about this tent. Initially I used external guylines facing angled forward to maintain the arc, but this meant an additional 2 stakes required. Later, I used a flat pole sleeve, which together with the shape of the fabric tends to do it. The hiking poles also make a small contribution, and I have fitted internal guylines with 1mm dyneema and mini cleats for additional bracing in really strong winds. These internal guylines alone would maintain the arc, but I don't often use them.

That is a good idea with the fibreglass ferrules. My initial idea was that the tent should flex at the top of the arc of the pole, so that the radius on the leeward side does not tighten up too much. This led me to the idea of using just a "half" pole, where it terminates at the apex of the curve, so there is no leeward side to tighten up and fail.

I was going to make the joint between the top of the tent pole/ridge pole and the hiking poles a flexible joint on this tent, to transfer some of the stress on the poles onto the fabric. I used bungee cord built into the head and guyed out from that, to allow some flex. I have found it much better just to keep the tent rigid though, and I cant see any ill effects from this yet. I did add another 2 short pole sleeves to the ridge pole though, to distribute the loads more evenly, and as the ridge pole stays in the flysheet when packed,it makes no difference to set up time.

d k
(dkramalc) - MLife
Re: Re: Your MYOG tent on 09/23/2013 15:09:11 MDT Print View

Beautiful! - I'd love to see the plan and details in the MYOG section.

marc D
(mareco) - M

Locale: Scotland
Re: Re: Re: Your MYOG tent on 09/23/2013 17:40:48 MDT Print View

Thanks. I have posted some more info to MYOG.