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Any Campers (Tenters) here?

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by daveswoodhauler, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Well, our old tent finally bit the dust after some high winds and pretty good rainstorm.
    I am in the market for a new tent, and was wondering what folks use to seal the seams on their tents? (We did not on our last one, and I would like to be a bit more preventative with our new tent) Not sure if there is a good brand that does the job well? Also, if you seal the seams, is it done once per year?
    Thanks.

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  2. SKIN052

    SKIN052 Minister of Fire

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    I have been a rather avid tenter for quite a few years. Typically I will only seal what I call the fly, the tarp over top the tent. I like to use a simple spray on can of silicon that is made for sealing tents. I buy mine at Canadian Tire or walmart. The outdoors stores will have really good but expensive stuff.
  3. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    My tent is a coleman Grantee not to leek for 5 years so I have done nothing to this one. I have used silicone spray on other tents that works well.
  4. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    I also usually just seal the rain fly, and the bottom foot or so of the tent. I don't think I've ever re-sealed the seams, I've just done it when I first get the tent. Some of the newer tents seem to already have pretty good seam protection. I have a larger tent I've never sealed. Same deal with the spray-on stuff. 3M I think?
  5. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Thanks guys...from what you have mentioned I guess the silicon spray seems to be the route to go with.
    Thanks for the help.
  6. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    Go with 2 very light coats spraying in different directions one horizontal and one on a 45 degree this will help get getting coverage and still let it breath. I always use a tarp underneath as well. Camp dry is what I have used.




    This is caming out of our kayaks.

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  7. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    I have used Aquaseal in a brush applicator to seam the seals of my backpacking tent. Don't need to use a lot (if weight is an issue) so the brush will allow for a bit less sealer to be used than a spray... Don't forget to absolutely let it dry before you pack the tent away...follow the instructions..

    Jay
  8. jlasserton

    jlasserton New Member

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    Silicon spray is the way to go! Make sure you use a tarp for underneath your tent too. It will help with the spray and keep you dry. I like Coleman brand the best for my camping needs.
  9. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Thanks, I have used tarps in the past underneath the tent, and have mixed results as in heavy rains the water pools on top of the tarp....do you guys build a moat around yours? :)
  10. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    The tent I use for car camping has tarp plastic for the bottom. No need for an extra tarp. I've got a custom cut piece of black plastic for the backpacking tent so it doesn't stick out to catch rain.
  11. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    no the pool is no problem its ground water that will flood you. Your tent should be able to handle the surface water fine an incline doesnt hurt.
  12. gpcollen1

    gpcollen1 Minister of Fire

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    I think you will find that many of the new tents out there come with a built in fly, sort of like this. I have one like that that is 5 years old already and awesome. Mine is large as I bought it for my expanding family. These are great b/c the air circulates between the fly and the tent getting rid of some moisture and heat in the summer - and the vestibule is awesome when it rains.

    http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/t...parentType=index&indexId=cat604777&hasJS=true

    As others noted, in the past I used the silicone spray.

    As for ground tarp, if the tarp extends past the edge of the tent it will fill up with water when it rains. If it's footprint is smaller than the tent, it should not catch any rain water. The ground tarp will allow condensation on the floor of the tent under your sleeping bag however, but that would happen without the tarp too.
  13. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Thanks, actually was going to order that same tent last night, but it is on backorder and need it soon. THanks
  14. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/t...arentType=index&parentId=cat602107&id=0003770

    This one awesome!
  15. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    I have always put a old ripped /torn / holey tarp or canvas under the tent just for an extra layer of cushion to help stop wear and tear on the bottom from pointy sticks/roots or sharp edges of stones.


    I had a bigger tent I put the sealer over the whole thing with a roller. It was a really old canvas tent, though. Spent more time trying to keep it mold free than water proof.
  16. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    For a groundcloth (the "tarp" that goes underneath the tent, which helps prolong the life of the tent floor), you can buy tyvek and cut it to the size of the footprint. Also, some tents have what's called a bathtub floor, which means there isn't a seam til a couple of inches or so up the walls, helps prevent the groundwater from getting in.

    The couple of advantages of buying a groundcloth from the tent mfgr is 1)Don't have to cut it 2)perhaps weight, probably slightly less weight than tyvek and 3)it may or may not give you the option of fastpacking, which is using the rainfly with just the groundcloth to save weight. (at the expense of a bugproof shelter)

    And as others mentioned, the groundcloth should not extend beyond the footprint so you don't catch water and no need for a moat.

    Jay
  17. SKIN052

    SKIN052 Minister of Fire

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    Surprised to see so many tenters on here. Figured most people were into trailers. I have a cabin I use quite a bit but still enjoy my tent. Maybe the wood cutters in us all likes the connection with nature.
  18. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    I was thinking the same thing.
    Funny thing is that my inlaws have a 22 foot trailer that we can use....but we don't have a truck to tow it with.
    We have used it a few times, and after my wife and I got home with the kids, we found tent camping was easier that packing us all in the trailer :) (Have 3 boys ages 7, 5 and 3)
    Just seemed like taking apart the table to make the bed, vice versa every day can be a chore...plus the trailer is branc new and we didn't want to break anything.
    I picked up a new Coleman tent off Amazon for $100, so hopefully it will be here in a few days. (Was going to go with a Kelty/Eureka..but after reading the reviews I just could justify spending 2-3 times more as they all seemed to have some areas of concern)
    Thanks for the help...and our fam will be camping again soon.
  19. SolarAndWood

    SolarAndWood Minister of Fire

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    The beauty of the tent is you can throw it in a pack or in the boat and go places you can't with a trailer. A tent in a lean-to is about as good as it gets.
  20. daveswoodhauler

    daveswoodhauler Minister of Fire

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    Yeah, I agree on the lean to's
    My wife and I used to camp up at Coolidge State Park a lot in the leen to's...loved the view of the storms rolling in on the side of the Mountain.
  21. firefighterjake

    firefighterjake Minister of Fire

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    No trailer for me . . . when I go camping I'm getting away from home . . . not taking it with me.
  22. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I am with you! I will make my own camping spot and never see anyone.
  23. madrone

    madrone Minister of Fire

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    Bingo. As far up a bumpy road as possible.
  24. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    ex-tenter

    kinda appreciating the cruise ship amenities lately

    still have the last one in the rafters of the garage, though if a kid didn't borrow it ...
  25. smokinj

    smokinj Minister of Fire

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    I camp off my kayaks and dont see people for days....Best camp sites are free!

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