Aug 27, 2012 at 9:57 am #1293402
There was a large thread about cuben fiber from 2008 and one of the main points is that none of the manufacturers would provide a warranty regarding fabric failure.
I think I'm ok adding cuben fiber in a stuff sack or a pack but the risk of fiber failure in a TARP is too great.
If you're in a bad storm and your tarp fails it could mean your death (hypothermia).Aug 27, 2012 at 10:31 am #1906449
There are probably over 100,000+ miles of trails around the world being hiked by hikers using CF shelters.
Get over it. Move on. Close thread.Aug 27, 2012 at 11:26 am #1906476
Not trying to be rude at all but this is not very helpful. Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence.
Better data would be:
– stats from vendors in total number of reported fabric failure vs silnylon fabric failure
– modern stress testing of cuben fiber to determine rate of failure , etc.
– anecdotal reports from users reporting their usage (though this isn't very solid data)Aug 27, 2012 at 12:07 pm #1906486
Thanks for starting the thread, Kevin. I've been wondering the same thing myself. Threads like the ones you mention and comments from Ryan Jordan about the long-term durability of cuben (and construction methods used by cottage manufacturers) make me hesitant to spend the big bucks for a cuben shelter or pack without knowing more details.Aug 27, 2012 at 12:42 pm #1906493
@m-lLocale: W-Never Eat Soggy (W)affles
Cuben is about 5x stronger than silnylon!
/ threadAug 27, 2012 at 12:51 pm #1906498
Cuben failures are not occuring due to wind stress unless you are in a hurricane. This is the same matterial that is used in wind sails, so whoever told you they were failing in wind were either wrong or had sewn areas of the tarp without reinforcing the puncture holes well enough. What causes cuben fiber failures is if you set it up and a hole gets poked in the material from say, a heavy tree branch falling on it or someone thinking that putting a needle and thread through it whithout reinforcing the material around the needle hole is okay. This causes the strength of the material to drastically reduce at the puncture point however, and will run along a straight line agross the puncture point, so the sew job (and the reinforcement thereafter)has to be done correctly which most folks that are selling cuben fiber currently have learned to do.
Cuben fiber itself, with no punctures, is stronger than any other ultralight material out there, no doubt. I would not be afraid of them as long as you purchase your tarp from someone that is reputable.Aug 27, 2012 at 12:53 pm #1906499
I think the earlier failures were due to stitching the fabric together. The tiny holes created would stretch and eventually fail under load. Seam sealing helped but did not prevent the problem. I believe all manufacturers have now switched to either taping or bonding the seams. Bonded seams are the strongest; however, I have not head of any failures using either method. Like silnylon, CF is available in different thicknesses. Most shelters are made with either .51 oz. or .74 oz. I've owned 2 shelters made with .74 and would have no problem recommending it.
Advantages of CF over Silnylon include (for shelter material):
1) It does not stretch, once your shelter is setup you don't have to continue to retention like silnylon
2) Its truly waterproof, you will not get "misting" effect in rain like silnylon
3) Better UV resistance, I've retired a few silnylon shelters due to this
4) Lower weight.
5) Easier to field repair, can use most any type of tape.
1) Less abrasion resistance, silnylon much better. This of course is less of an issue for shelters.
2) Costs, yep way more expensiveAug 27, 2012 at 1:00 pm #1906501
Lots of stuff claimed here. Any sources?Aug 27, 2012 at 1:04 pm #1906503
There are a ton of sources, including pressure tests by all sorts of different people that have worked with the material righ here in this community. All you have to do is search for cuben fiber and you will see all sorts of test on the material and how much weight it whithstood prior to tearing.Aug 27, 2012 at 1:15 pm #1906507
I have over 1,000 miles of hiking with a 0.34 cuben fiber tarp. I have probably 2k miles with 0.51 cuben fiber shelters. I have probably around 250 miles with 0.74 cuben fiber shelters.
I know of at least four triple crowners that have done all of their hiking (10,000+ miles) with nothing but cuben fiber shelters.
This material has proven itself the world over. Enough all ready with these posts here at BPL from the CF haters. Time to move on folks.Aug 27, 2012 at 1:48 pm #1906515
"This material has proven itself the world over. Enough all ready with these posts here at BPL from the CF haters. Time to move on folks."
What posts? or What haters?
You'll have to forgive those who want to make an imformed decision beforedropping $$$ on a material they are unfamiliar with.
I have a tarp with .51 and one with .74 and judge them to be more than adaquete for my needs. The .51 hexamid is suprisingly strong/durable. I think the points about construction technique are important.Aug 27, 2012 at 1:57 pm #1906521
"cuben is about 5x stronger than silnylon!"
What weight to what weight? What you are suggesting is that Cuben would have a tear strength of over 50 lbs per square inch.Aug 27, 2012 at 2:00 pm #1906525
Which four triple crowners?Aug 27, 2012 at 2:01 pm #1906526
So you don't have any sources? Just making stuff up.Aug 27, 2012 at 2:06 pm #1906528
This is coming from a guy who just a few months ago was selling all of his gear.
I have sold four complete setups this year alone. So what. I had enough gear in my house to supply a small army of hikers it seemed like. So just because I sell off a bunch of gear and buy all new gear makes me a BS hiker? Ho-hum. There are enough guys out there (include a couple dozen from BPL) that have seen my gear on-trail with me. Call BS all you want.Aug 27, 2012 at 2:15 pm #1906532
Commentary out of line and removed.Aug 27, 2012 at 2:20 pm #1906534
Per MLD's website:
"MLD has been building Cuben Fiber Tarps, Shelters and Accessories continuously for over 7 years. We have more experience than any other builder and we do all the work in our own shop. We use unique bonding tape with 3X the UV inhibitors vs other common 3M style tapes. We have never had a Cuben tarp returned for failure in the field. These type of commercially built Cuben Fiber tarps and shelters have been in use by many thousands of users worldwide though hundreds of thousands of nights of all types of weather with no online reports of undamaged material leakage in the rain."
Cuber Tech also list breaking strength of their material:
http://www.cubictechnology.com/CTF3%20PRODUCT%20INFO%20PACK%2007192010_4c.pdfAug 27, 2012 at 3:00 pm #1906556
"you don't have to continue to retention like silnylon"
Yes it makes it sound dramatic but it is simply not true.
Let's say that silnylon can stretch up to 5%, so from dry to wet a 1 meter piece of fabric stretches to 1.05 m.
At that point it can't stretch anymore, so if you set your shelter nice and taut ONCE it has stretched, it will remain nice and taut.
That can be taken as ONE time , not a synonym of "continuously" nor "continually"
This is my Contrail after it rained on it all night, it was set taut at 8PM the night before…
And that is how it looks pretty much every morning I have had rain on it during the night.
FrancoAug 27, 2012 at 3:07 pm #1906565
"I think the earlier failures were due to stitching the fabric together. The tiny holes created would stretch and eventually fail under load. Seam sealing helped but did not prevent the problem."
Any examples of this?Aug 27, 2012 at 3:34 pm #1906571
@jephotoLocale: New Zealand
If Ryan ever publishes his wind performance article Part 2 it could have some interesting data on cuben shelters.Aug 27, 2012 at 3:38 pm #1906573
@woodenwizardLocale: Greater Mt Tabor
This shows failure points (and shows testing methods) Y'all know SteveAug 27, 2012 at 3:47 pm #1906578
Barry, thanks that's what I was referencing when I made my comments.
Question for David Olsen, since you manufacture shelters with both silnylon and cuben fiber what is your experience? Thx.Aug 27, 2012 at 3:51 pm #1906581
@retropumpLocale: The Antipodes of La Coruna
"I think the earlier failures were due to stitching the fabric together. The tiny holes created would stretch and eventually fail under load"
"Any examples of this?"
For sure. My First generation Refuge-X tore very neatly around the stitching lines attaching the side guyouts. I would say that construction is crucial to good reliability in cuben design, at least designs such as shelters where the seams can be prone to a lot of stress.Aug 27, 2012 at 4:04 pm #1906590
> I would like some back up on the statements. As would David O.
> Otherwise, it is hard for me to accept your statements unless they are provided in context.
I think there's a big  for all those statements.
Otherwise they're just rumor and that doesn't help anyone.
Who were these people?Aug 27, 2012 at 4:06 pm #1906592
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