Jul 7, 2018 at 4:43 pm #3545841
“Love the concept! Are you planning a two person in the future?”
Thanks! The short answer is that if the 1P sells well enough, I think we’d do a 2P but it’s not for sure.
From a design perspective, some of the choices that are made to optimize a tent for 1 person aren’t necessarily optimal for two people. What I mean is that 2 poles is the obvious way to go for 1P, but it might be worth going to a 3 or 4 pole design for two hikers if there is an elegant way to do this, since you’ve got more poles laying around anyways. I have some ideas.
The X-Mid layout works really well for a small, light 2P tent. Something with a 45″ wide inner floor, average headroom, maybe 33oz. But for a generously sized 2P tent (50-55″ wide floor) I think a fundamentally different design is the way to go since there’s only so much headroom you can get out of 2 poles. Imagine a 6 person tent with just 2 trekking poles and it should be obvious why more structure would be advantageous. As the space needs go up, you have to add some complexity to address that, but only as little as necessary.
So if the X-Mid 1P sells well enough, I could see a 2P version following before too long since I have that design pretty far along (perhaps this winter). Then further out would be a more generous sized 2P tent with a totally different geometry.
“Can you pitch w/o the fly in good weather? Do you need any extra cord?”
You can transfer the peak guylines from the fly to the inner, if you want to set up the inner alone. The inner doesn’t have rings for the pole tips, but you can just tie a little loop in the guyline for the pole tip or use a clove hitch.
“Did you use a prototype of this mid on your yo-yo? Awesome use of massdrop and Asia to actually get a cool design to market (Attention Roger and his tunnel design). DCF model eta? Jk”
Not on the yo-yo because it was with my wife, so we had a TT Saddle 2.
Yeah the partnership with Massdrop is great because I can do the interesting part (design) and not have to do the manufacturing which I’m terrible at. The factory does an awesome job.
I’d love to do a DCF version. We’d need a different factory so it’s not coming anytime soon, but it would be very cool. It could be as light as 13oz with the lightest design choices: 0.5oz DCF, single wall style inner and a single door zipper. So you could get a tent lighter than anything from Zpacks while being radically simpler and more storm worthy.
One benefit that may not have been mentioned is the color choice, a natural and subdued color blending into the environment, much better for stealth camping than many other offerings out there.
Thanks Ethan. Glad you like it – I put quite a bit of thought into the color. It’s a sage green, which I think is a little bit unique while still be subtle.
“I love it! Seems very well thought out. I’m going to pick one up even though I already own a TT Notch. Are there any plans to offer a “solid inner” like TT does? Are there any plans to release a slightly larger 2 person version?
Nice to hear Eric! I think the Notch is probably the strongest competitor out there in this market segment. The Notch is simple to pitch but the X-Mid even simpler because it has a rectangle base instead of a diamond, so both require 4-stakes but with the Notch you are somewhat estimating how far apart to stake the ends, you have to pre-measure the pole lengths and you have to be careful with the pole locations as it’s easy to set it up with the poles off center. The X-Mid also has way more functional vents, packs a lot smaller since there are no struts so you can pack it horizontally in a pack, and has quite a bit more headroom. Both tent inners are ~43″ high but the X-Mid maintains that over a much larger portion of the inner (44″ long ridgeline versus about 30″). The Notch is slightly lighter, but the X-Mid is basically providing the living space of the SS1 at the simplicity and weight of a Notch.
No immediate plans for a solid inner. Some day I’d love to do a beefed up “alpine” version that uses a solid inner amongst other things.
Yeah maybe a 2P before too long if the 1P sells well enough.Jul 7, 2018 at 6:05 pm #3545856Catherine HarleyBPL Member
No ‘solid inner’ makes it somwhat less useful for those of us who get out in wet and windy climates – I’m thinking Scotland (my main stomping ground) but other places have the same requirements.
:-(Jul 7, 2018 at 6:17 pm #3545860Ethan A.BPL Member
@mountainwalkerLocale: SF Bay Area & New England
Catherine I like a full or mostly solid inner for winter. For milder warmer conditions mesh is nice for ventilation. There’s a really easy fix if you want to add a removable partial inner for a mesh inner tent, while still keeping the tent mesh and airy for warmer conditions – you can sew 4-6 small velcro patches (fuzz/loop side) on both sides (L and R) of the outside of the inner door, and sew matching hook-side velcro patches on two pieces of ripstop inner, one for each side of the door, each enough to cover 1/2 or 3/4 height of the mesh door.Jul 7, 2018 at 6:24 pm #3545862Bruce TolleyBPL Member
@btolleyLocale: San Francisco Bay Area
Weight of the shelter has been corrected to 28 oz.
Cheers!Jul 7, 2018 at 7:03 pm #3545870Eric OsburnBPL Member
A solid inner is really nice when it’s windy in the desert and during the cooler weather. I’ve really loved how my Notch with the solid inner performs.Jul 7, 2018 at 7:50 pm #3545879Catherine HarleyBPL Member
@Ethan – I’ve tried a solution a bit like what you describe,, on the inner of my MYOG cuben mid It was a big faff and I still got a lot of drafts. It pushes the weight up too. I just gave up on the project and use a cheap Chinese inner which works well.
Many folks over here start with solid inners as the default option and then use mesh/no inner when conditions allow.Jul 8, 2018 at 1:49 am #3545926Ito JakuchuBPL Member
Thanks for the images. Looks really good. The more I look at the design the more I like it. Very elegant way of using common issues and turning them into a concept / opportunities.
Would a pole height of 115cm work (I have fixed length foldable poles)? I’m considering signing up for Massdrop because of this tent.Jul 8, 2018 at 2:44 am #3545931matthew kModerator
Dan, I’m a tip-down kind of guy. Is there enough caternary curve on the ridgeline to keep the trekking pole handles in place and allow placement of the poles with the tip down?Jul 8, 2018 at 5:04 am #3545952
Would a pole height of 115cm work (I have fixed length foldable poles)?
115cm fixed length poles would work but not perfectly. They are slightly short since about 117cm is perfect. If the ground is uneven, you could position the 115cm poles with the handle on a slight bump so it’s lifted up slightly to work perfect. If the ground is totally flat, then 115cm is a tiny bit short but the tent would still pitch nicely if you pulled out the peak guylines to add the little bit of tension that is missing. Or you could slip a 1″ tall rock under the poles to lift them up slightly.
Adjustable poles are ideal. If you have fixed length, 120cm is the best because you can just put them on a slightly angle to take up the extra space. 115cm is the next best. It works but sometimes you’d want to add a little rock under the poles.
Is there enough caternary curve on the ridgeline to keep the trekking pole handles in place and allow placement of the poles with the tip down?
Yes. They’ll stay. There’s not a ton of catenary cut – just enough to do the job without losing headroom in the center – but the handle up would certainly stay. Especially if you extend the pole nice and taut. The tent pitches best if you really extend the pole firmly so it’s quite taut.Jul 8, 2018 at 7:56 am #3545957Graham FBPL Member
@02174424Locale: Victoria-Southeast Australia
G’day Dan not sure if you are still awake-it is 6pm here in Australia. Can you say when the shelters will ship and/or if there is a limited number. Can you also state the vestibule /porch dimensions for me please, I notice you have the Hanchor Marle in two of the photos for scale which is nice. Also in relation to the long “door” panel -can it be partially opened/closed , I am wondering if the zip was done up about half way would it work? Would it still tie/toggle without throwing the pitch “off”?. ThanksJul 8, 2018 at 9:46 pm #3546001Daryl and DarylBPL Member
@lyrad1Locale: Pacific Northwest, USA, Earth
Congratulations on achieving this complex task so masterfully. I can only guess the hours of thought and activity that preceded what you have accomplished here. Best of luck on this project!
DarylJul 9, 2018 at 5:11 am #3546062
As I replied on Massdrop, this is a pre-order so I expect the tents will be a couple months. I’m not entirely sure but Massdrop will update the listing with that info tomorrow AM before the orders open.
Vestibules are 100″ along the long side, 34″ along the short side, 105″ hypotenuse. About 24 sq feet for both combined – very generous – perhaps the most vestibule area of any lightweight solo tent.
The doors can be secured without the zips fully opened. I’m not sure what the limit is but you can certainly secure the door with it only zipped 2/3rds open.Jul 9, 2018 at 5:12 am #3546063
“Weight of the shelter has been corrected to 28 oz.”
The thread title also says “2 people” when this is a 1P tent. Not a big deal, but that might mislead some folks.Jul 9, 2018 at 2:39 pm #3546081RobBPL Member
The drop is live now. Delivery is not until April of next year. I was going to get one of these but I have a problem with letting them have my money for 8 months. I’ll wait till later.Jul 9, 2018 at 3:39 pm #3546091Eric OsburnBPL Member
I really hope this project goes well and a 2-person version is developed that will be something like the TT Saddle 2 which is really the shelter I need to buy next. A $250 or less 2-person should sell very well.
I currently have a TT Notch and a SMD Lunar Duo, but I’d like something more storm worthy and lighter than the Lunar Duo for trips where I share a shelter.Jul 9, 2018 at 3:49 pm #3546092
“Delivery is not until April of next year. I was going to get one of these but I have a problem with letting them have my money for 8 months.”
Yeah 8 months is a longer wait than I was hoping for. I’ve asked Massdrop about it, but I expect that’s just how long it takes for the factory to do their thing. I don’t know the details of how many tents they’re ordering and how that works, but you might be able to buy one in April assuming Massdrop gets enough orders to meet whatever the minimum order size is.
“I really hope this project goes well and a 2-person version is developed.”
Thanks Eric! I hope so too. I’m only doing this because I’m very particular about tents and think they can better. I’d very much like to come out with a 2P design that I think is excellent.Jul 9, 2018 at 8:11 pm #3546109Katherine .BPL Member
I’m in. I’ll post pics and experiences next summer!Jul 9, 2018 at 8:49 pm #3546115Jeff McWilliamsBPL Member
April of next year? Wow, that’s a huge lead time!
I guess I’ve only ever ordered a few smaller random things via MassDrop, like a Rab Meco Tee, and that was maybe 4 weeks or so?Jul 10, 2018 at 12:16 am #3546143Steve ChanBPL Member
@sychanLocale: SF Bay Area
April of next year? Wow, that’s a huge lead time!
I signed up for the Magnic Light IC bike lights on Kickstarter back at the end of 2013 with a 3-4 month delivery and it took over a year and a half to get my lights! In the end, the lights were everything they were promised to be. At least in this case the lead time might be conservative…
I would be a little more concerned about a spreading trade war raising the final costs.Jul 10, 2018 at 1:18 am #3546153
Thanks Katherine! I’m excited to hear what you think. I love it. Every time I use the prototypes I’m wondering why I didn’t think of this layout sooner.
I talked with Massdrop about the lead time. To shed a little insight here, the 8 month wait is mostly because the tent manufacturer takes about 6 months to make a large batch of tents. This manufacturer makes large batches of tents for most of the big outdoor companies (they do about 300,000 tents per year) and do they do every step of the process including dying the fabric, setting up machines to cut the panels etc, tons of QA etc. Plus they’re busy so there’s a wait until they can start. So that’s why it will take them up to 6 months to build the tents, and then there is a bit of time to ship them to Massdrop, do some quality checks by Massdrop etc. It might be a bit sooner than 8 months but that’s what they’re confident they can deliver.
To tide you over, here’s a little infographic showing how to pitch the tent. Basically it’s just stake the four corners and add the two poles. The only slightly non-intuitive thing is the ideal angle for the guylines.Jul 10, 2018 at 4:21 am #3546170Steven ParisBPL Member
@saparisorLocale: Pacific Northwest
I haven’t had a chance to check it out on Massddrop, but (1) the tent looks like another great addition for the UL crowd and (2) this discussion is also insightful for the details into shelter design and manufacture, so well-done Dan!Jul 10, 2018 at 3:37 pm #3546194Ben H.BPL Member
@bzhayesLocale: No. Alabama
Does Mass Drop charge your credit card when you order or when the tent ships? If they charge you immediately, then you will end up giving up all of your consumer protections waiting for the tent to deliver.Jul 10, 2018 at 3:57 pm #3546197
Your card is charged when the drop ends (end of July) because this is a pre-order to finance the production run.
As you say, this could mean that your credit card customer protections run out before you get the product. However, it’s not like you’re trusting some small, new company to execute the product. Massdrop is a well established large company and the tent manufacturer we’re using has been building tents over 60 years including about 300,000 tents per year. So it’s a pretty safe bet.Jul 10, 2018 at 5:00 pm #3546209Paul S.BPL Member
It’s also not like a Kickstarter or Indiegogo where they’re trying multiple prototypes, etc. before the final product is ready. In this case we have a fully functional product ready for production.Jul 10, 2018 at 5:14 pm #3546214bradmacmtBPL Member
Brilliant Design… I’m not a trekking pole user, so I’m less inclined to the tent due to having to carry poles, but man there are just no flies on this design. Kudo’s!
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