Stephenson 2C Tent Review - Part 2
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Ryan Jordan
(ryan) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Greater Yellowstone
Stephenson 2C Tent Review - Part 2 on 03/19/2014 01:01:59 MDT Print View

Companion forum thread to:

Stephenson 2C Tent Review - Part 2

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Interesting comment on (lack of) 4season design on 03/19/2014 16:38:30 MDT Print View

The 2C tent badly needs a third arch pole between the front and rear poles. Tentpole Technologies can make it to the proper radius if you give them ceiling height and floor width.

Let's look at another tunnel tent design:

Tarptent's MOMENT DW
1. "double funnel" design (end guylines can help fly support a moderate snow load)
2. optional ripstop inner tent
3. 4 guy points 2 side, 2 end)
5. optional exterior X-ing pole
6. Possibility for easily converting the Exterior X-ing pole to an Interior X-ing pole. (to provide even more canopy support for heavy snow loads)
7. outstanding quality of construction
8. very reasonable price AND made in USA

The Moment DW is a solo tent that can take 4 season use in stride with the X-ing pole option.

For a 2 person Tarptent with full-on winter modification see my Scarp 2 photos in BPL's Winter Hiking pages.

Edited by Danepacker on 03/19/2014 16:40:30 MDT.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Note to editor: Stephenson 2C Tent Review - Part 2 on 03/19/2014 17:04:21 MDT Print View

Note to editor: the two links to previous reviews in paragraph 2 appear to be broken

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Interesting comment on (lack of) 4season design on 03/19/2014 17:31:07 MDT Print View

The 2C tent badly needs a third arch pole between the front and rear poles.

Won't argue with that! I don't see it mentioned on their current web site but I'm pretty sure they used to offer that option (but discourage it as unnecessary in their opinion), at least in the "R" models.

I dearly love Henry's TarpTent designs (have owned three, four if you count an MYOG from his original plans). But I'd be surprised if the Moment or Scarp would fare well in the target conditions establish for these Stephenson's reviews. Those are somewhat harsh conditions.

@Eric: I realize it has been only a year, but how has your modified Scarp 2 fared? And what were the details of the toughest conditions encountered?

edit: Concerning the sag caused by 8 inches of 10% water content snow. Unacceptable? Certainly! but almost every 3 season shelter ever mentioned here at BPL would fare worse. Granted, this is not a 3 season shelter review.

Edited by jcolten on 03/19/2014 17:45:10 MDT.

Steve Duby
(JHypers) - M

Locale: Interior Alaska
2C Review on 03/19/2014 22:53:08 MDT Print View

I've had the 2C for over 3 years now, and I'd have to call this an honest review. The little loop inside on the tent ceiling is such a disappointment, as you described. Just about worthless - other than to tie off that elastic cord to stretch that vent open further. Would be nice if you could hang a stove in there, but I'm willing to bet just about any hanging system will only hover at 6" from the floor or less. I wouldn't trust a white gas stove in there under any circumstances, but a remote canister stove like the MSR Wind Pro works well if you've got a piece of foam or board to buffer the floor with.

One thing not at all mentioned, is the fact that, unless you request otherwise, Stephenson Warmlite tents do not come seam-sealed. Perhaps the authors paid extra to have it done in-house, but I thought a point should have been made about that. They provide you with the silicone glue and some paint brushes for a DIY job.

Inaki Diaz de Etura
(inaki) - MLife

Locale: Iberia highlands
Re: Stephenson 2C Tent Review - Part 2 on 03/20/2014 09:43:33 MDT Print View

Have you addressed the manufacturer about the issues stated in the review? The construction concerns and particularly the field failures. The Stephensons seem impermeable to any negative feedback. They state the tent is good enough as it is. I too was shocked by the cheap looking seams in my 2C but forced myself to believe they actually were good enough for the intented use and that stronger looking seams would only serve aesthetics. I have not had any failures but I haven't put the tent through any extreme weather or heavy snow load. But you've had failures. I'd like to hear what the manufacturer has to say. Most of the reported construction problems seem easy to fix for a small weight penalty.

I'm particularly surprised by the tension line problem at the front panel in a tent that's supposed to be a tension tent!

Eric Blumensaadt
(Danepacker) - MLife

Locale: Mojave Desert
Modded Scarp 2 on 03/20/2014 13:06:58 MDT Print View

Jim,

Unfortunately I haven't been able to test the modded Scarp 2 in a heavy snow load, just a heavy wind load. I expect it to do well in a wet, heavy snow (with proper end guying).

As for the Moment DW, I have not yet purchased it since selling my single wall Moment. When I do I'll get the ripstop inner and the X-ing pole. And, of course, I'll shorten the X-ing pole to fit inside the fly. Aside from sewing and seam sealing two Velcro cable wraps inside the fly to stabilize the X-ing pole that's all there is to it.

That said I can say that I am confident a Moment DW with that modification will withstand a heavy snow load.
BUT... one must occasionally get out and shovel away the snow from the sides of the tent to keep it from pushing in. Failure to do this will result in a very narrow tent by morning. Only the best tunnel and dome tents can resist these side loads.

BTW, I'm thinking of buying the X-ing pole from Tentpole Technologies so I can get a stronger pole by increasing the tube wall thickness and diameter, just as I did with the main pole for my Scarp 2.

Edited by Danepacker on 03/20/2014 13:13:04 MDT.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Modded Scarp 2 on 03/20/2014 16:08:59 MDT Print View

BTW, I'm thinking of buying the X-ing pole from Tentpole Technologies so I can get a stronger pole by increasing the tube wall thickness and diameter, just as I did with the main pole for my Scarp 2.

Probably well worth doing. I did that for the vertical poles on our RS2. The stock poles bow too easily for my taste. That added about 2oz for two 49" poles. Very acceptable in a 43oz shelter.

Franco Darioli
(Franco) - M

Locale: Melbourne
Stephenson 2C Tent Review - Part 2 on 03/22/2014 16:37:14 MDT Print View

Jim
Too late for you but at TT we also have the 0.490in / 12.4mm "Vertical Support Pole" , 4.2 oz for the RSII (under Extras)
(sorry for the interruption...)