SlingFin Makes Serious Tents for Serious Users

SlingFin doesn't care for bean counters, product managers, or marketing departments. What SlingFin co-founder Martin Zemitis does care about is authenticity and making tools to get the job done. In SlingFin's case, those tools are serious, high-altitude, expedition tents for serious users, like professional guides.

"We started at the top of the mountain and are working down," said Zemitis of SlingFin's product line. "If we can make it for those users, we can make it for anyone."

Zemitis co-founded the two-year-old SlingFin after three-plus decades designing and producing tents, sleeping bags, and packs for Sierra Mountaineering, The North Face, Sierra Designs, and Mountain Hardwear, where he was a company co-founder.

The newest SlingFin tent, the SafeHouse 2 (rear view above), is a two-person expedition tent with an extended front vestibule and rear tunnel to store your gear or use as an exit. Zemitis calls it an "old-school approach of what has worked before." The SafeHouse uses six Easton anodized poles and a design that promises improved sidewall strength. Weight: 8 lb 9 oz (aluminum poles), 8 lb 3 oz (carbon poles)

Devon Brown of SlingFin showed us the company's first backpack at Outdoor Retailer. The Honey Badger was a design challenge to create a lightweight, durable, waterproof pack that was abrasion-resistant for users who don't want to get hung up, like climbers, cavers, and canyoneers.

It has a semi-rigid external skeleton, is fitted with a 23-liter dry bag, converts to a bike pannier, and can be repaired with items found in any hardware store, so you're encouraged to repair it yourself.

SlingFin hopes to launch the Honey Badger as a Kickstarter project in August.

Filed under: Gear News, Outdoor Retailer

Comments

speacock
10 reviewer rep
475 forum posts
August 5, 2012 at 12:04 p.m. (EDT)

Nice to see creative innovation as well as improvements on existing tested designs at the high end. 

Love the pack wish I had the youth and energy to enjoy it.

Always a concern for mountaineering is the time to set up a shelter and the added complexity with bad weather and high winds.  They don't show any additional lines coming off from the side for more stability.  If the tent is fully 'self contained' with poles and the stiffeners this is wonderful design.  Carrying extra anchors and finding a place to nail them down has always been a problem in narrow or restricted hunkering down places.  It still looks like a good bit of time to set it up and the more help you have the better. 

Good space for weight ratio.  Also good to have deep pocket sponsors.

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