- May 21, 2009 at 8:14 pm #1236478
I've had 3 requests to post pictures of my MLD Spectralite (Cuben) Poncho/Tarp so I figured I would post some and anyone who has one can add to it as they wish. Here they are…May 21, 2009 at 8:17 pm #1502907
Great shots: do you have any of it in a regular A frame pitch? (Depending on how I like my GoLite, I may upgrade to the MLD model.)May 21, 2009 at 8:25 pm #1502910
Sorry Matt, I don't have any of it in the A-Frame configuration…will do on my next trip. Trying to get out next weekend to test the quilt and will update this post afterwards.May 21, 2009 at 8:54 pm #1502917
Just curious as to how much you rely on your bivy to keep you dry in storms. Does the small tarp size mean it just blocks the majority of rain while the splashes and any blown rain are kept off with your bivy? How well does that work in prolonged rain?May 21, 2009 at 9:05 pm #1502920
Steve – I am sure this has been discussed before, but what does that weigh??May 21, 2009 at 9:36 pm #1502925
Doug JohnsonBPL Member
@djohnsonLocale: Pacific Northwest
A MLD Spectralite poncho/tarp…
A SMD Refuge X…
A Tarptent Double Rainbow…
Is that heaven?May 22, 2009 at 8:16 am #1502984
Hey Derek, I guess it really depends on how hard it is raining and what you would consider to be hard rain/storm. I'm a pretty tall guy so I need the bivy to keep dry if the storm is really rolling in. You'd be fine for light rain but if it's coming down hard, the rain splash will eventually get you. For comparison, even with my Duomid, I have to move my pad and bag as close to the center as I can when it is really pouring or it will splash under the sides, even if it's pitched just a few inches off the ground.
I guess you would expect the sides of the bivy to get some splash on it, but that's what it's designed for.
David, it weighs 4.1 oz with the guylines.
Doug, good eye, it was heaven. That was from last weekends "beer"packing trip – I'll post a trip report soon.May 22, 2009 at 9:13 am #1502995
@michaelreaganLocale: Southern California
Those photos are a great help, and now I'm SERIOUSLY anxious to receive mine from MLD! BTW, I'm also 6'3" so it's comforting to know this setup works for us tall guys.
Regarding your "beer"packing trip, did you have to beer-bag or did you simply fill a beer canister to protect the precious suds? Oh man, that was bad…
Michael :)May 22, 2009 at 10:11 am #1503004
"David, it weighs 4.1 oz with the guylines."
Insane. What freedom from weight!May 22, 2009 at 10:32 am #1503011
@thomdarrahLocale: Southern Oregon
I love my spectralite MLD Grace Solo tarp and my arcteryx alpha sl jacket and have no plans to change. That said, my system weighs-in at slightly over 16 oz more for basicly equal protection/performance. Very nice.Jul 13, 2010 at 9:47 pm #1628778
Steven and co,
Just wondering, its a bit over a year now since this thread started…how are these ponchos holding up, and after how many nights of use?
I'm thinking about going SUL for some serious trail thru-hiking in the future in Australia (I have a big cycle tour in the way first), and considering this poncho if Ron still makes it.
Its a bit hard to tell on his site, but I'm guessing its made from a single sheet of cuben, with no ridgline seams? Does he bond all of the other seams, like he describes with his new Pro cuben tarp? Any idea whether he'll be making these out of the new, slightly heavier cuben he has?
Looks awesome :-)Jul 14, 2010 at 9:43 am #1628885
My poncho is holding up fine. When I had my bushbuddy, I regularly cooked under it and has since turned it a very light beige colour over the years due to smoke and dirt. If You are fine using a silnylon poncho then I see no reason why this wouldn't work for you. I'm pretty used to cuben fiber now but in my mind it holds up great and I anticipate many more years of use.
Regarding construction: it is made from a single piece of cuben so there is no sewn/bonded ridgeline. A hem is sewn around the perimeter. The corners/mid points have small triangle shape bonded cuben reinforcements- you can see it in the pics. There are small bartacks to secure the grosgrain web tieouts and then a snap is added to each one. This allows it to be buttoned up when used in poncho mode.
As for a thicker material, I wouldn't know, but I'd actually love to see a thinner cuben version being used :)
Edited to remove incorrect information.Jul 15, 2010 at 7:13 am #1629213
Mike MBPL Member
Steven- can ask how tall you are? if your tall and fitting in a 1/2 pyramid pitch it's roomier than I would have thought (@ 4×8') :)
also did you ever get to try any a frame pitches?
I'm currently using a ID poncho/tarp- would be nice to cut that weight in half!
tiaJul 15, 2010 at 9:41 am #1629269
I'm 6'3". I fit in the 1/2 pyramid pictch, but my feet brush the poncho. It's really tight for me, but it doesn't bother me.
Sometimes, if I find a stick, I use it to bring one corner up for some additional head room (see pic #7 in forst post).
Not sure if I have any in A-frame pitch but I'll check when I get home. Reason is that I hardly ever use A-frame…it's almost always in a 1/2 pyramid.Jul 15, 2010 at 9:50 am #1629271
Ron BellBPL Member
We've updated the specs.
Now 4.3' X 8.8'
Not sure the exact measure of Steve's . SIze has changed a little over time as the Cuben fabric width available has increased.
We can custom make them shorter or longer- just ask.
RonJul 15, 2010 at 11:33 am #1629309
Mike MBPL Member
steven- ahh that's good news, I like the 1/2 pyramid pitch as well- seeing I'm a little shorter shouldn't be too much of a problem
ron- that's great news- a little longer AND a little wider :)Feb 24, 2014 at 7:00 pm #2076717
Very old thread I know Steve, and no, I still haven't dropped the coin on this (had a huge cycling trip, then got married and had a baby, worked overseas…I know, excuses excuses), but I am saving up for it now as my next purchase!
Wondering what length pole you use for your half pyramid pitches? I need to get trekking poles too and wondering if I can get away with a fixed length. I'd need about a 115cm fixed length myself.
Cheers!Feb 24, 2014 at 9:46 pm #2076757
Eric BlumensaadtBPL Member
@danepackerLocale: Mojave Desert
Not to rain on your UL shelter parade but to give a different perspective I look at those photos and see a one-sided tent with no floor and no bug protection.
As a former "tarper" I need about 50% more square ft. than that tarp gives.
And as a current tenter even 50% more coverage with no floor or bug protection still doesn't cut it.
But I applaud your conviction to lessen your load by these severe means.Feb 24, 2014 at 9:49 pm #2076758
I totally understand your concerns. This won't be what I take and use everywhere. I have other tents and shelter systems and rainwear for other conditions. Although I haven't poncho tarped yet, I now have a lot of experience in pretty inclement conditions and have a pretty fair idea about how I think I'd go in what conditions with this set up. So there will be plenty of times I make the call to take this on a trip, and plenty of times when I don't.
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