Aug 18, 2013 at 8:05 pm #1306682
Any particular reason most cuben mids use .75oz cuben instead of .51 cuben? I mean beyond general durability. Are there some structural stresses on a mid that makes .75 cuben the default weight? Do we not see mids from Locus Gear and MLD using .51 cuben for a particular reason?Aug 18, 2013 at 8:27 pm #2016466
Trace RichardsonBPL Member
@tracedefLocale: Southern California
FWIW, as far as I know all or most of the Zpacks Hexamids use .51 … I've never had any issues …Aug 18, 2013 at 8:36 pm #2016470
Yea, I have a Hexamid Twin and have never had an issue. That is part of the reason I am wondering why the major mid makers only use the heavier cuben. Why not a Solomid or Duomid in .51 as an option?Aug 18, 2013 at 8:46 pm #2016472
James DeGraafBPL Member
@jdegraafLocale: Bay Area
I believe you can get MLD gear in .51 if you ask for it.Aug 19, 2013 at 5:38 am #2016517
Dan DurstonBPL Member
Cuben is a sandwich with plastic (mylar) outer layers and the tough "spectra" strands in between. These spectra strands are what really makes it strong. The 0.74oz cuben uses the same plastic layers as the 0.51oz, but it gets nearly double the spectra strands inside. So for a fairly small increase in weight you get a much stronger material.
The 0.51oz stuff is generally good enough, but more attention needs to be paid to tie-outs, seams etc and ultimately it's not as strong which can be a concern if you're expanding into 4 season use. Ultimately they're both good materials, but the 0.51oz stuff is more of a niche item. Manufacturers likely prefer the 0.74oz because it can handle some misuse by the customer – and because it is quite a bit stronger which means a longer lasting more versatile shelter for the same price and only 1-2oz in weight.
I'd use 0.51oz for a 2-3 season tarp, but for a mid that I want to use with snowloads etc I think the extra weight is well spent.
You also see people using 1-1.5oz cuben in some applications, but the appeal there is different. The main attraction with this heavier variants is the thicker outer layers, which are more than twice as thick and thus give it better abrasion resistance. It's still not great at abrasion though, so it's suited for gear that sees light abrasion (stuff sacks) but not serious abrasion (packs).Aug 19, 2013 at 10:55 pm #2016799
Thanks for your cuben wisdom. I have a Hexamid Twin and I am very comfortable with the durability and strength of the .51 cuben. I don't plan on winter camping. It sounds like going with a Mid in .51 cuben will only provide minimal weight savings. I want a Mid for solo hiking as I like the simplicity, small foot print and wind/weather resistance. It is just they weight about the same as my Hexamid Twin.
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