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Tunnel Tents Tutorial and State of the Market Report – Part 3: The Mini-Reviews


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Home Forums Campfire Editor’s Roundtable Tunnel Tents Tutorial and State of the Market Report – Part 3: The Mini-Reviews

Viewing 14 posts - 26 through 39 (of 39 total)
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  • #3371437
    Roger Caffin
    BPL Member

    @rcaffin

    Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe

    Have you thought about joint venturing with one of the familiar US cottage companies? i.e. Tarptent?

    I did discuss this with Henry Shires, but in the end he decided not.

    Easton Sales Dept wanted to sell to Walmart. “High performance’ gear was too hard.

    I am open to offers.

    Cheers

     

    #3371441
    Will Penney
    BPL Member

    @will_penney

    Locale: Europe

    Yes, I’m from Wellington.¬† I’m also familiar with the often temporary nature of snow walls.¬† But good info, and I really enjoyed the article.

    I understand the function of these sod cloths / valences.  Your experience is obviously that they should go the full perimeter of the tent.  There are plenty of tents featuring them only around the vestibules.  I can only assume these brands are trying to strike a balance with ventilation, any other ideas?

    I was wondering why in the market, tents clearly designed for snow use often have no sod cloths at all. I think Stephen touched on a major reason above – for various reasons manufacturers like to keep them as a “special order” option.¬† If Hilleberg do offer this option, they keep it well hidden.

    Do you ever find them annoying on your Winter tent, when there’s no snow?¬† How do you find the width (which looks to be about 150mm) – would you change it if you were making them again?

    Thanks Will

    #3476193
    Edward John M
    BPL Member

    @moondog55

    Here’s an idea from Macpacs old competitor FairyDown

    The tents were valance compatible from the factory with loops sewn every 300mm along the base of the fly. You could supposedly order valances but the answer I received when I tried to order a set was that they were so simple to DIY the factory couldn’t be bothered.

    Cut the nylon to a reasonable size and sew on buttons or toggles and sew loops the the base of whatever tent you own. If they freeze in it is no great drama to cut the tent free.

    #3476310
    Roger Caffin
    BPL Member

    @rcaffin

    Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe

    I missed some of these comments – sorry.

    why in the market, tents clearly designed for snow use often have no sod cloths at all.
    I have often wondered too.
    * If the tent is aimed at a ‘forest’ market where you are not going to get lots of gale-force winds, then a sod cloth is probably not needed.
    * Also, being commercially realistic, a lot of ‘snow’ tents are bought for non-snow use.

    Attachable sod-cloths? Yeah, but will they block spindrift? You need to watch for that.

    Cheers

    #3557495
    John H
    Spectator

    @jhillam

    Any experience from anyone on the old Kelty Windfoil 3 tent?¬† My understanding is Kelty made this tent from the late 80’s until about 2002, in a slight evolution of modes, but how would one get one or get parts for one now?¬† All 2 person and 3 person models were of same respective dimensions, all had fly to pole clip mechanism, all had through fly vent at front bell, and all had internal guy lines on each of 3 poles to tighten top of pole arc from inside, for snow loading.¬† The originals were made in the USA, had spectra webbing on inside of fly to clip direct to tent poles, had 10mm composite poles made by glassforms, had a unique web lever to tighten the pole into a pole end pocket and could be pitched fully with fly attached and fly to pole guy line anchors set.¬† Later models¬† were made in Asia, used DAC manufactured poles to pre-bent¬† and tempered to Kelty specs in 13mm size and used normal pole end grommets with plastic buckle and webbing to tighten the pole.¬† The later model could not be pitched with fly locked to tent body as Kelty used a proprietary and difficult to use two part clip to lock the fly in place over the poles, called “fly boy” clips.¬† ¬† Climbing Magazine rated the original tent as the most bombproof of 4-season models tested and some tent users over the years have been amazed at what they’ve seen the tent stand up to, relative to big name-brand domes.¬† These tents never seem to pop up on eBay or forum gear trading swaps.¬† Anyone have any experience with them?

    #3557768
    Pierre Descoteaux
    BPL Member

    @pierre

    I still have the WindFoil 3 from 1999 (could be¬† 1998 and a White Phantom pack from the same year). I think it was the version just before they added the Fly Boy attachement system to the fly. It handled high winds on Aconcagua in 1999 very well and was so easy to set up comparing to domes that Mountain Madness guides that where using Garuda’s seemed to be very impressed and took shelter from their clients in my tent almost every evening just to take a mental brake from their clients. Lounging inside with 4 to five people, it was interesting to see the guides puzzled faces staring around wondering why they did not use those tunnel… We had the same time lines but were not a guided trip. They were impressed by the ease of setup even in winds and for one person! The tent was light for the times at less then 9# including over sized guy lines. It was also great for any winter camping in Quebec.¬† It slept 3¬† with ease and could fit 4 like sardines in a pinch. If you want more info of more specifics, I can set it up for pics or do some research…

    Cheers

    #3558220
    John H
    Spectator

    @jhillam

    Some pics would be cool.  Is it true the tent could be pitched with fly on?  How is the tent with snow load?  Reports are it was awesome in wind.

    #3558228
    Roger Caffin
    BPL Member

    @rcaffin

    Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe

    A good tunnel tent can always be integral-pitched – ie all together. In fact, there is zero reason to separate the bits. Share other parts of the gear instead.

    Yeah, properly pitched they handle the wind just fine. We have sat inside ours with a 100 kph wind outside and calmly cooked dinner. NOT a problem.

    Cheers

    #3558388
    Pierre Descoteaux
    BPL Member

    @pierre

    Pics: Well, all predates the digital era… I’ll set it up over the long weekend and see what I can do.

    The tent has color coded pole sleeves closed at one end and a very neat/useful sleeve tension system. It can easily be set up with both the inner and fly at once or inner only. It was easy to set it up alone even in high wind like most tunnels. The sleeves are sewed to the inner, not on the fly. Fly was pu coated polyester.

    Pics to come in a few days.

    #3558847
    Pierre Descoteaux
    BPL Member

    @pierre

    Alright¬† John, here are some fresh pics.¬† Some should be rotated in order to make more sense… I did not use an iPhone and still… At least I can resize and post pics… It’s a start.

    #3558858
    Roger Caffin
    BPL Member

    @rcaffin

    Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe

    And a very fine tunnel tent indeed.

    Cheers

    #3558935
    John H
    Spectator

    @jhillam

    Pierre, thanks.  What a cool tent!  The features are unique and practical.  I have some hilleberg tents, the most similar is my Keron, but it doesn’t have as peaked of a roof as Windfoil and lacks those internal guylines to make roofline taut under snowload.  Is there anyway to still get one of those Windfoils?  It seems they are ling sold out from any retailers that had had them.

    #3558936
    Pierre Descoteaux
    BPL Member

    @pierre

    Well John, you could always buy mine… but let’s move this part of the discussion to pm’s if you’re interested.¬† Cheers

    #3563153
    John H
    Spectator

    @jhillam

    Guys our gear storage had a long forgotten legacy Windfoil tunnel tent in rather poor condition, since replaced by MSR and Hillebergs.  This Windfoil had mildew in a couple spots, fabric tears on pole sleeves, gear pockets were stretched beyond usefulness, waterproofing was compromised, and a mouse had chewed a hole in the right side door.  With help from MSR, McNett, Atsko, Kelty Warranty department, and BPL articles about Silnylon this 26 year old tunnel tent long ago forgotten is restored to near new condition!  Fly as stripped of PU in isopropyl bath, has had mildew stain worked out and has been coated on both sides with silicone slurry.  Floor has been recoated with Mcnett PU.  Kelty repaired pole sleeves, door, gear pockets, and a few places where high stress stitching was coming loose.  This tent has the original glassforms epoxy composite poles.  The quality is not on par with my Hillebergs but the design of this tunnel tent wins my preference.  I’llnever use it heavy but I’ll bring it back into service for a winter trip or two.  Enjoy!  

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