Tent review^

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Mark R
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Tent review^

Post by Mark R » Wed Dec 03, 2008 8:11 pm

Heather and I just took delivery of our combined Christmas pressie to each other, a new sea kayaking tent;

Image

Acquired at a bargain price in the Xmas sales...

Quick review

Pros:
* Great price
* Seems bombproof, very rigid with poles and guylines everywhere; easily coped with the random crosswinds that plague our living room
* Vast space inside extending upwards and outwards, gear space at the rear end and cooking space at the front end, pretty well filled the room

Cons
* Stupid obnoxious colour scheme making it about as environmentally unobtrusive as a Drive-In MacDonalds; indeed, it clashed with our sofas somewhat
* Silly pointless window at the top, enables you to watch telly from within at least
* Rather excessive for just two folk if you're less territorial than we are



Nice tent. Just need to be holed in it for a few days by some crappy weather, to test it properly.
Mark Rainsley
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NIKOND70
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Post by NIKOND70 » Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:22 pm

http://www.songofthepaddle.co.uk/forum/ ... ngo+spirit

I was hoping to stuff one of these in the stern of my kayak for maximum comfort. Should fit in the hole.....
Seems similar but less techno than yours. Whatever works, camping is great.
Richard.
What a long strange trip its been

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Post by NIKOND70 » Wed Dec 03, 2008 9:31 pm

p.s.
Sorry for being impolite
HAPPY CHRISTMAS!
What a long strange trip its been

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Tent review

Post by MattB » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:08 am

I lived in one of these in Icleand for five weeks in 2002. No question their bombproof, but slightly fiddly to put up and perhaps more condensation prone than a quaser or Hilleberg. One suggestion was they are made in drier climates where condensation is less of an issue than the U.K?

Matthew

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Jim
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Re: Tent review

Post by Jim » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:16 am

Mark R wrote:* Stupid obnoxious colour scheme making it about as environmentally unobtrusive as a Drive-In MacDonalds
Excellent, next time I see one out and about and I'm going to try ordering a burger!

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StuartA
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Post by StuartA » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:30 am

That is a bargain Mark. I've got a very similar design from Marmot and it repeatedly impresses with how bombproof it is.

I also seem to have become a part owner in one of these:

Image

51kg and a huge (wheeled) bag - any ideas on how to get it into a Nordkapp? It is too big to put up in our garage!

Stuart

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Post by timax » Thu Dec 04, 2008 11:35 am

Love that Coleman for car camping but did I read right in the green dot on the side it says 51kg?? I need a bigger car!

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Post by Vince » Thu Dec 04, 2008 3:51 pm

Presumably it's to keep your kayaks in out of the elements overnight when you are out an trip........... !

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Post by maryinoxford » Thu Dec 04, 2008 5:37 pm

StuartA wrote:51kg and a huge (wheeled) bag - any ideas on how to get it into a Nordkapp? It is too big to put up in our garage!
Get an inflatable packraft and tow it behind you!
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Not in Oxford any more...

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Mark R
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Re: Tent review

Post by Mark R » Thu Sep 17, 2009 9:12 pm

Mark R wrote:Heather and I just took delivery of our combined Christmas pressie to each other, a new sea kayaking tent;

Image

Acquired at a bargain price in the Xmas sales...

Quick review

Pros:
* Great price
* Seems bombproof, very rigid with poles and guylines everywhere; easily coped with the random crosswinds that plague our living room
* Vast space inside extending upwards and outwards, gear space at the rear end and cooking space at the front end, pretty well filled the room

Cons
* Stupid obnoxious colour scheme making it about as environmentally unobtrusive as a Drive-In MacDonalds; indeed, it clashed with our sofas somewhat
* Silly pointless window at the top, enables you to watch telly from within at least
* Rather excessive for just two folk if you're less territorial than we are



Nice tent. Just need to be holed in it for a few days by some crappy weather, to test it properly.
This tent is rather excellent for two people on a longterm trip. When it works.

Over a 3 week trip, ours - starting after about a week of use in total - saw 8 pole breaks (always around joints) in winds from F5-8, nothing I'd consider extreme. One break tore the flysheet.

Mountain Hardwear have agreed to replace the poles and flysheet - they are sending the poles to Quality Control for testing.

Hopefully the new poles will not be such a disaster, we like this design and want it to work.
Mark Rainsley
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MikeB
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Re: Tent review

Post by MikeB » Thu Sep 17, 2009 9:28 pm

I was interested in your pole probs, having experienced similar with the new MkII Vaude I got last year - perhaps all these poles come from one similar source? I had three breakages over two trips - at the joints. The insert sheared where it went into the pole on two occassions, the resulting stress from the second breakage then actually fracturing the pole on the other side of the tent.

Vaude repalced the poles - with a set which then happily bent in a F6, flattening the tent. Far from impressive.

I certainly can't recommend the Vaude I had - hopefully the Vaude Power Atreus which replaced it will be rather better.

Mike

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Re: Tent review

Post by Mikebelluk » Thu Sep 17, 2009 9:33 pm

I got a Trango copy from Argos last year which I would expect it to survive the wind you mentioned even with the fibreglass poles supplied . It's really solid when it's up, and believe me I have owned and still have a lot of tents.

http://bluggery.spaces.live.com/blog/cn ... !249.entry



I think you really must have got a bad batch of Friday afternoon poles!

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Re: Tent review

Post by geordiekez » Fri Sep 18, 2009 12:10 pm

Mike B, both Vaude and Mountain Hardware use DAC poles, though I'm not 100% sure if thats the case with Mountain Hardware Trango any longer. Should they both still be using DAC poles, I'm surprised they've both failed as DAC is billed as the market leader based on performance! That said, a few years ago the DAC featherlite poles weren't great in anything above force 4 (I remember returning alot of poles to various makers and suppliers) but I thought that issue had been long since sorted.

Cheers, Kez
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Re: Tent review

Post by MikeB » Fri Sep 18, 2009 1:09 pm

Thats very interesting. How would a DAC pole be identified?

The original pole set for the 2008 Mk II seemed significantly less "rigid" if that's the right term than the poles for my old (1998?) Mk II. The old tent seemed to be under more tension and was stable in anything up to F4/5 without it's guys - the new one needed guying all round, all the time.

The pole set Vaude sent following the constant breakages was even thinner and lighter and just couldn't support the tent - Vaude told me that it was actually intended for the lightweight version of the MkII but I can't see why that should make a notable difference with what is billed as a 4 season tent. As I mentioned, at least they didn't break - just bent!

The Power Atreus poles appear to be a bit chunkier and so far have withstood some nasty weather.

There dont appear to be any obvious markings on the poles to say who made them.

Mike.

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Re: Tent review

Post by geordiekez » Fri Sep 18, 2009 3:59 pm

If the poles are DAC's somewhere on one of the poles, there should be the DAC logo and pole type lightly embossed, I've just pulled a set of poles out of one of my workplace's stock, and it did take a while to find! It used to be that only DAC visibly re-inforced their poles on the male sections, best shown rather than explained - on the DAC website, the featherlight poles have a contrasting colour visible almost inside the pole... (http://www.dacpole.com/html/products.htm#poles)
Interestingly (for me only probably!) it was a Hilleberg tent I borrowed the poles from, with DAC featherlight poles, so they must have greatly improved for Hilleberg to be confidently using them. (Or DAC had a rogue batch in 07/08)

cheers, Kez

( possibly a.k.a gear geek!)
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MikeB
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Re: Tent review

Post by MikeB » Fri Sep 18, 2009 6:42 pm

Oh no, never apologise - gear geek'ery is good!

I doubt very much whether the poles on the Vaude are DAC - for starters, the inserts are crimped and I certainly can't find a DAC logo - -

Vaude's tech info says "Gestänge: Al 7001 T6; 10,2mm" - which probably isn't that helpful.

Image

The black pole ends are just for the location pegs on the tent.

Image

Crimping marks

Image

Different angle - on the MK II, the poles fractured at the point where the inserts went into the pole - so actually it was the insert which failed.

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Re: Tent review

Post by Helen M » Fri Sep 18, 2009 7:42 pm

geordiekez wrote: ( possibly a.k.a gear geek!)
OK - Mike may not hate you but I do! We are paddling with him this weekend and testing his new tent. I can guess how the campfire conversation is going to go! THANKS!

H - x

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Re: Tent review

Post by MikeB » Fri Sep 18, 2009 7:56 pm

Indeed - my flysheet is 40D Polyamid Ripstop 40T, bothsides siliconized with a waterhead resistance of 3.000mm. The inner is 30D Polyester Ripstop 285T and the groundsheet 40D Polyamid Ripstop 240T laminated, with 10.000mm. Poles, as you know are Al 7001 T6; 10,2mm.

Now, what IS interesting is that the pegs are also aluminium, but I repalced them with Millets own brand and I think I'll bring the original Vaude ones too for some comparison testing. You already know my views on guy lines, but I do think Dave and I need to talk about the merits of Dymacord over the ones I use.

And most importantly, will need to compare my bottle of Lagavulin with whatever Dave brings.

Mike.

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Re: Tent review

Post by geordiekez » Sat Sep 19, 2009 10:26 am

To continue my geekiness...
The 7001-TD poles, which are pretty much current industry standard where DAC are not used, from the cheapies in Argos, up to full-on mountain jobs, are actually an aluminium alloy with a zinc content, which offers the high tensile strength necessary in pre-bent poles - the addition of zinc making the pole stronger and lighter than a pure aluminium (apparently!) though I suspect DAC poles are a similar compound as DAC claim to move with technology, not compounds.
With regards to the crimping of pole inserts, this has always been industry standard, and is recognized as one of the most common points of fracture when the poles are subject to stress loading, hence DAC (and one or two others – Mountain Equipment springs to mind, but I can’t guarantee that!) expand the insert tube once it is in place in the pole to lock it in position.
As for guys, the only way to go is polypropylene!

Have a grand weekend folks!

Cheers, Kez
R.I.P ucsm remembers.

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Jim
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Re: Tent review

Post by Jim » Tue Sep 22, 2009 8:03 pm

Never spotted any kind of logo on my vango poles, but did break 2 more at the weekend, in zero wind conditions. They are not crimped, I believe the inserts are expanded. Fortunately before I went away I purchased a load of ferrules for 8.5mm fibreglass poles which are perfect as repair sleeves. I am seriously considering switching to decent fibreglass poles instead of the alloy ones.

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Re: Tent review

Post by GrahamKing » Wed Sep 23, 2009 4:27 pm

Jim wrote:I am seriously considering switching to decent fibreglass poles instead of the alloy ones.
I had an opportunity over the summer to do rather a lot of camping, and managed to break a few alloy poles in precisely the manner described above. These clean, transverse fractures are easy to repair, either with proprietary tubular splints such as those supplied by TeraNova, or by more ad hoc methods (examples of both ways here). I also met several people with broken fibreglass poles. These were longitudinal, greenstick fractures that required much more extensive splinting. I'd prefer alloy poles any time.

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Re: Tent review

Post by geordiekez » Wed Sep 23, 2009 7:54 pm

In an average year I live in a tent for about three months over the summer and tend to use gear to destruction and generally find that the alloy poles, regardless of manufacturer, will last longer and more effective repairs can be made to broken poles in the field when compared to a fibreglass pole.

Cheers, Kez
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Re: Tent review

Post by Jim » Thu Sep 24, 2009 9:09 am

Well my experience is opposite, I have a set of solid fibreglass poles that have been used extensively for about 20 years (less so recently) and the only sign of trouble was that one started to split longitudinally so I wrapped some tape around it.
Compare that with some of my more recent alloy poles which broke on the first outing and there is no comparison for me. Every pole on my Spirit 200+ has now broken, one of them currently has 2 sleeves on it and 3 or 4 rips in the pole pocket.
I could make better poles myself if I could find the materials.

Jim

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Re: Tent review

Post by Rdscott » Thu Sep 24, 2009 11:55 am

I was going to say you wont be disapointed Mark but further reading shows you have been.

I have owned a very similar tent by Mountain Hardwear for 6 years and spent 3 months living out of it in Picos de Eurpoa a few years back, it coped with F9 and upwards winds and even wakeing to 3 feet of snow covering it.

The version i have has alloy poles which seem bomb proof, however have heard stories of them bending, where as fiberglass poles tend to split, which is nothing a roll of duck tape cant sort on a short term basis.

Currently using a vango viper 200 which has plenty of sleeping room but could do with a little more porch area for cooking in tent bownd days.

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Re: Tent review

Post by tizereyes » Thu Sep 24, 2009 2:16 pm

MikeB wrote:Different angle - on the MK II, the poles fractured at the point where the inserts went into the pole - so actually it was the insert which failed.
Yes I've had the same breakage on my Vaude MkII, but due to drunks falling on the tent rather than high wind!

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Re: Tent review

Post by Ceegee » Thu Sep 24, 2009 8:08 pm

tizereyes wrote:Yes I've had the same breakage on my Vaude MkII, but due to drunks falling on the tent rather than high wind!
Not that Rainsley fellow who keeps following you around I hope?

Steve
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Mark R
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Re: Tent review

Post by Mark R » Wed Sep 15, 2010 9:58 pm

Just an update on the Trango. Armed with new poles which had endured a total of one weeks' use, we headed to Shetland.

Total after a month...five pole breaks, each one failing spontaneously in windless weather.

Trango 3.1 - big steaming pile of shit.
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Douglas Wilcox
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Re: Tent review

Post by Douglas Wilcox » Wed Sep 15, 2010 10:06 pm

One for the Trango drawer? Unfortunately my Optio drawer is too full.

Douglas

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MikeB
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Re: Tent review

Post by MikeB » Wed Sep 15, 2010 11:08 pm

Fit For Purpose? Not.

Update on how this is resolved??

By way of info, the Vaude broke a pole this summer - in a gentle breeze. Vaude replaced it, but I wasn't impressed that it broke in the first place.

Mike.

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Jim
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Re: Tent review

Post by Jim » Thu Sep 16, 2010 11:15 am

I am fairly sure that apart from when my poles break whilst being battered by strong winds, they also break when the tent dries out and the fabric contracts as it does it so - i.e. fair weather spontaneous breakage. My thoughts may have been directed this way because my brother reported that 2 broke whilst he was drying the tent I loaned him in his flat.....

Is that possible forthe Trango brekages? Heavy morning dew, poles popping mid morning as the flysheet tightened up again?

Doesn't make it not a flawed design - the Vango Chris had trouble with doesn't have any flysheet tension adjustment, the one I normally use does and I think since I took a policy of always leaving them slack (against my scouting instincts) I haven't had a drying out related breakage, but that may simply down to always using it in strong winds.

Tent instructions never tell you not to tension the flysheet when it's wet (although these breakages seem to happen more to not releasing more tension when wet) yet it was always something I was warned about in the days of wooden or steel poles when it was the flysheet that would rip rather than the poles breaking. Conspiracy by tent manufacturers?

The guy lines will also shrink as they dry.

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