Sticky tent fly

11:17 a.m. on February 20, 2012 (EST)
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I got a hold of a older model Sierra Designs tent (Hyperlite 2). This tent hasn't been made in a few years (7 or so) and the one I got has never been taken out of it's stuff sack. When I took it out, I found the inside of the fly to be very sticky. I believe the material is silnylon. The inside of the stuff sacks have the same issue.

I was told that baby powder or climbing chalk could help the problem. Any thoughts on that? Any other solutions for fixing this? Why did this happen? Will this issue affect the waterproofness?

Any info and/or solution would be appreciated.

2:22 p.m. on February 20, 2012 (EST)
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Sounds like the fly may have been damp when it was stowed, as the water tried to evaporate the material stuck together. Did it smell like sour milk at all? Clean it with a mild vinegar and water solution and then hang up to dry, in the sun preferably. I had this happen to me with a tent I had not used in 20 years. It was difficult to pull apart and it was my mother at the time that recommended the viegar/water solution and then drying in the sun.

Baby powder or talcum podwer could work on the fly when stowed to keep it from resticking together. I have never tried this tho.

6:13 p.m. on February 22, 2012 (EST)
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I have the same problem in my Therm-A-Rest bag.

Talc is a short term solution. 

9:08 p.m. on February 24, 2012 (EST)
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Please use 303 Aerospace Protectant you will be grateful for it. I now buy it by the gallon. Going on two years "new" on my 18 year old Moss Little Dipper and Outfitter Wing and has done a great job on restoring my 30 something year old Klepper Aerius II  amongst the many crafts that I have the honor of saving. Use it sparingly apply with a soft bristle brush and wipe exess off with a soft cloth, do this a couple times a year depending on exposure to the elements.

 
IMG_0555.jpg

So many boats... so little time!

www.303products.com is where it's at

3:22 a.m. on March 5, 2012 (EST)
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I had this happen with the floor and sidewalls of a TNF VE 25.  Pulled it out of the stuff sack before a Mt. Rainer trip and saw that the urethane waterproof coating had softened and become sticky. No time to deal with it so off I went. I spread a fleece blanket out on the floor in camp and it didn't move the the entire trip. It rained and grit and sand in the splash-up stuck to the lower coated sidewalls which face the outside. Once home, I returned the the tent to TNF and received a new replacement tent. I think long term storage in the tent stuff sack has something to do with this. The fly was unaffected.

9:36 p.m. on March 6, 2012 (EST)
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Ah, sticky tent sydrome.  I have a number of tents that have had or have that problem.  The are two camps of thought on why this happens.  One has to do with if the tent/fly was stored wet or and or stored in high humid conditions.  The other has to do with some materials need to off gas. If stored in in a tight contained manner then the offening materials cannot off gas and the material degenerats into being slightly stick all the way to a glued together gum ball as my Garuda Trikaya did.  My experiance with all my tents is that it is due to off gassing as I have never stored a tent wet.  Every tent I've had that has had this problem have been worse towards the center of the tighly packed tent which would seem to me to be due to the fact that the tent had less ability to off gas near the center of the tightly rolled tent/fly.  I have never seen a tent/fly surrcomb to sticky tent syndrome if stored in an open unpacked manor.

You must understand that the stickyness is because of the degredation of the waterproofing of your fly.  When you unpacked the fly did it stick together and need be pulled apart.  If so then the waterproofness of the fly is almost assuredly compromsied.  Not a thing you want to find out in the field.  So how sticky is the material on the fly?  The more sticky it is, the more it has degraded.  On new lighter tents it does not take much to lose your waterproofness, though, it is my experiance that this mostly happens with older tents as the new materials have improved in recent years.

First I would set the tent up prefebly in a multi day storm and see if it leaks.  You can set you tent up under a sprinker but this only replicates a very light mild rain even if it is under the sprinkler for hours.  I usually take a hose end sprayer and try to guess how hard the water would have to hit the tent if I were in a high wind drive rain storm (IMAGINE 50-60 MPH WINDS AND POUNDING RAIN).  Some of the tents I have are factory tested for 24 hrs at 1200 inches of rain per hour.  Do not try this at home.

One of the problems is that even if the fly is still water proof it may be so sticky that it will attract all kinds of grit & grime that will be nasty and especially bad when stored.

What I did with my Garuda Trikaya was I ordered a gallon of graphite and rubbed the graphite into the sticky tent material till it was sticky no more.  I then took damp rags and rubbed until no more graphite came off.  I did not want to use anything that might be water soluble and make a sticky mess.  If you try this method do so outside and use a respirator.  Remember that graphite is black so will heat up more in the sun.  As the stickyness is on the undrside of the fly this may not matter.  I tried to get some powderd lithium (as it is much, much lighter than graphite)  as I could in years past but they will now not sell it in the volume I needed.  As my material is now not water proof I will be coating the inside with a silicone coating.   If your fly is still water proof you will then will have fixed the sticky problem and not need to deal with re-waterproofing.  If not then you will need to recoat the fly as mentioned above.

Contained with in Serria Designs warranty is this statment"............does not cover damages caused by improper care, accidents or the natural breakdown of materials over extended use and time."  So truth be told unless your really really love your tent I would first get ahold of Serria Designs and see if they will cover it under their warranty.  If they don't cover it then see if they have any extra flys laying around that they can sell you.  If not, look for one of these tents on Craigslist and or EBay so that you have a spare tent body and poles.  Hope this helped.

This a befor picture of how a Garuda Trikaya looks before being graphited (yes this is now a word).

Trikaya5-2-.jpg

 

 

Here is a picture of the Garuda Trikaya after being graphited (yes this still a word).  The treated areas of the tent were the front and rear vestubiles and the side vent covers.  As much as I like the original burgandy color I sure do like the matallic black.

 


DSC03828.jpg

 


DSC03826.jpg

1:51 p.m. on March 8, 2012 (EST)
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cool colors

5:41 p.m. on March 13, 2012 (EDT)
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Try what Pine Sap suggested; ask the manufacturer if they will exchange it.  Many companies will.

Ed

3:36 p.m. on March 15, 2012 (EDT)
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graphitized ?

graphicated ?

    Oh, well ....

Friend of mine uses a term, plasticated, referring to any process wherein some form of plastic is used.   Such as covering something with plastic tarps, plastic drop-cloths ... immersing tool handles in liquid-plastic ... etc., etc.

                             ~ r2 ~

3:50 a.m. on March 20, 2012 (EDT)
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A wonder if a coat of Nikwax solarproof/waterproof on both sides of the fly might resolve this problem. I'm thinking it might "stabilize" the degraded pu. Anyone tried this?  

9:29 a.m. on March 20, 2012 (EDT)
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Urethane is water soluable .  Not very, but time, pressure and warmth help and create the sticky mess you see.  Once the urethane has begun to go into solution, it can't be saved.  You could re-coat the floor with a number of different compounds to re-waterproof it, but IMHO these won't be nearly as good as the factory coating.  Rubbing it with an abrasive will remove the urethane so you can re-coat it, but will almost certainly damage the actual floor.  I would NOT reccomend the use of powdered lithium, which can, depending upon the form we're talking about, be toxic.

IMHO - this is a defect in the material and, shared honestly with the manufacturer or retailer, should result in a discounted new tent.

2:37 p.m. on March 20, 2012 (EDT)
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apeman said:  "I tried to get some powderd lithium (as it is much, much lighter than graphite) as I could in years past but they will now not sell it in the volume I needed."

and then seth said:  "I would NOT reccomend the use of powdered lithium, which can, depending upon the form we're talking about, be toxic."

And then apeman just now said: Just as I wiped down the graphited areas with wet rags to to remove any excess graphite I would do the same with lithium. Just as I described using the proper and appropriate respirator to apply the graphite, I see no problem myself using lithium myself.  In fact I had no problem doing this myself except it was messy and time consuming. As I will be coating the graphited areas with a silicone coating it will seal any graphite into the sticky material that the wet rags did not pick up.  This will also cover the affected area(s) making it water proof as well. I would recommend the same thing be done if someone were to use lithium. Just as using a pressurized paint system to paint a car can be TOXIC, I would not out of hand recommend that people do not paint cars because it may be TOXIC. I might however recommend the proper way to paint the car so that it is not TOXIC.

Apeman also said:  "Contained with in Serria Designs warranty is this statement"............does not cover damages caused by improper care, accidents or the natural breakdown of materials over extended use and time." So truth be told unless your really really love your tent I would first get ahold of Serria Designs and see if they will cover it under their warranty. If they don't cover it then see if they have any extra flys laying around that they can sell you. If not, look for one of these tents on Craigslist and or EBay so that you have a spare tent body and poles."

If you have a tent that really needs to be saved and the saving of the tent transcends the money and the amount of time you have, there most certainly are ways to do this. If you do not have the time, money and fortitude to get the job done, then as has been suggesting in many different forms above, get another tent.

Please let us know what you did regarding the matter of your tent.  I'm very courious if Serria Designs will cover this under their warranty. 

3:20 p.m. on March 20, 2012 (EDT)
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Never store a tent in a stuff sack.  Never store a sleeping bag in a stuff sack.  

4:35 a.m. on March 21, 2012 (EDT)
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The graphite idea sounds like a good solution, though I wonder if the conductivity of the material would make it a danger during thunderstorms.

1:57 p.m. on March 21, 2012 (EDT)
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Babokulu said:

The graphite idea sounds like a good solution, though I wonder if the conductivity of the material would make it a danger during thunderstorms.

Thanks, Yea it did work for me. As it was winter and pouring rain when I did this, I applied the graphite in my living room thinking that I could contain the graphite cloud, I was wrong. Note to ones self, Never apply graphite to anything in large amounts inside ones home. Again always were a respirator when attempting something such as this. Though graphite has a fairly high rate of conductivity, I would guess that the small amount of graphite that was used was no more than that which is contained within a small box of pencils. Being that most people have highly conductive cooking stoves, cell phones, metal knives, pots and pans, and other such metal items I would guess that this does not add any more danger to being struck by lightning in the backcountry. And if I recall correctly the human body is a pretty good lightning rod in and of itself. But even if it does add another dimension to the lightning rod theory some there are some of use who fit into the occasionally discussed sub group of people who partake in the act of "Risky Behavior", and are willing to take the chance. ;-}>

Just a side note if copper were to be 100% conductive than graphite would be at 3.5%, titanium 3.1% while aluminum would be at 59%. Hummm, setting up a dome shaped lightning rod and then purposely seeking shelter under it during and electrical storm.

9:57 a.m. on March 22, 2012 (EDT)
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Yes corn starch or baby powder will work but as others have pointed out this situation is due to the ageing of the PU coating. Storing the tent wet or in high heat can result in this but it really is the aging of the PU coating. Talc will help immediately but your PU coating has been compromised. You could recoat the tent but there are no recoatings available that even come close to replicating the original factory spec. Plus recoating a fly is a lot of work. So unless you have some deep seated emotional attachment to this tent I would retire it and purchase a new one. Disclaimer, I am a tent salesman by trade so of course I would say that. I might even encourage you to buy 2 tents. So there. There is no such thing as too many tents. The rotten milk or baby vomit smell will be the next thing you notice and that is from the ageing PU too. You might also notice that the feel or hand of the fabrics is very soft, almost cottony. That is age beginning to show. Toss it.

4:53 a.m. on April 4, 2012 (EDT)
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Apeman, thanks for the long, detailed reply. Lots of things to think about in regard to this project. Right, I have another quick question that needs your expertise! I'm having a bit of difficulty finding powered graphite. Would activated charcoal be a suitable alternative? I'm thinking a thin film of adsorbate might cover the pu  and provide a surface for another layer of waterproofing. Because the surface of a fly is exposed to fairly high temperatures the reaction of the activated charcoal to heat could be an issue. Any thoughts?

 

 

 

6:54 a.m. on April 4, 2012 (EDT)
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Babokulu said:

Apeman, thanks for the long, detailed reply. Lots of things to think about in regard to this project. Right, I have another quick question that needs your expertise! I'm having a bit of difficulty finding powered graphite. Would activated charcoal be a suitable alternative? I'm thinking a thin film of adsorbate might cover the pu  and provide a surface for another layer of waterproofing. Because the surface of a fly is exposed to fairly high temperatures the reaction of the activated charcoal to heat could be an issue. Any thoughts?

 

 

 

 

I think that charcoal might work but I have never tried it. I don't think that there would be any problem with the temps that the tent would reach out in the sun in regards to using charcoal. Do remember though, that the tent will get much hotter in the sun since it will be black. In my case, the tent stays pretty cool as it was just the vestibules that I treated with graphite and the tent itself has superior venting and has a yellow body. Has the urethane that your trying to treat degraded to the point where it is not water proof any longer? The graphite or charcoal will not do anything to help with waterproofing, it will only take care of the stickiness. If the urethane is compromised so that it is not water proof any longer then you will have to treat the material with a waterproofing treatment. I looked back over the thread and could not find what problems your are having with your tent, only that it was the fly.  What kind of tent is it?  is the stickyness on the underside of the fly or the outside, I'm assuming the outside?

Here's a link to some graphite on eBay. Its for Dixon Graphite 1lb Can 635 Finely Powdered Graphite $16.55 buy it now w/ free shipping

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Dixon-Graphite-1lb-Can-635-Finely-Powdered-Graphite-/200726446360?pt=Pneumatic_Hydraulic_Valves_Parts&hash=item2ebc3a8118

A pound will go along way. I bought a gallon (5 lbs) and used 1/5-1/4 of it or about 1 lb.  There will be quite a bit of waist.  Remember that all of this will increase the weight of your tent.  If you feel that you will use more than a 1lb here is a link for four lbs.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/4-DIXON-1lb-Cans-powdered-large-flake-graphite-No-1-dry-lubricating-additive-/170713897657?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27bf575ab9

Let me know if you decide to do this so I can give you some hints to save yourself time and effort and not make the mistakes I made.

8:44 a.m. on April 4, 2012 (EDT)
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"Has the urethane that your trying to treat degraded to the point where it is not water proof any longer?"

It's still waterproof, but the treated sides (inside) of the fly and floor are a little tacky. The problem is almost certainly a breakdown of the PU.

"What kind of tent is it?" 

A four-person geodesic model from Taiwanese manufacturer Rhino. They've already sent me a replacement, but I'd like to restore this one if possible.

Thanks for the ebay links. Unfortunately, I'm located in Taiwan so shipping costs make buying it from the the US an expensive proposition. I'll have to translate graphite into Chinese and do another round of hardware stores. If I still can't find any, then I'll go with the charcoal.

Good sir, what are these tips you speak of? 

Tent:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/chungliguy/7039427027/in/photostream

 

 

 

3:59 p.m. on April 4, 2012 (EDT)
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When I started this project it was in an effort to save tents and make them usable.  In an effort to do this I felt I need to come up with a way to make the sticky/tacky material non-tacky without recoating it with a new sealer.  There are many times when the urethane starts to break down but it has not broken down enough to affect it's water proofing.  In hind sight what I should have done was test the tents water proofness before applying the graphite.  By applying the graphite I got rid of the tackiness but did little to nothing to help with the fact that it had lost it's waterproofing on the affected areas.  In my case if I were to have applied a sealer and not the graphite I would have achieved my original goals, which was making my tent waterproof and non tacky at the same time.

In your case the tent is still waterproof.  So instead of adding another sealer on top of a already unstable urethane, I think that applying a non water soluble substance would be the way to go.  If you were to apply a material that is non water soluble such as graphite then it would take care of the tackiness.  Here is another dry lubricant that I was unable to find when I did my search last time.  I found that may very well work better for what we are trying to do here though I know little about it at the moment.  The nice thing about it its it appears to not be water soluble as it is a dry lubricant but it is not black like charcoal or graphite.

Searching late last night after I posted you I found this: PVC Powder - Dry Lubricant - 1.5 lbs. white

http://www.ebay.com/itm/PVC-Powder-Dry-Lubricant-1-5-lbs-white-/400081730630?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5d26babc46

My thoughts on this is there has got to be a bunch of this stuff floating around in China.  I would think that it would be cheaper and it appears to have many, if not all the same,  applications as graphite. Though the graphite looks really cool, and I mean really cool, I'm afraid that if you use it on the outside fly of a dome tent and the tent does not have tons of adequate venting to handle the amount of temp change that will occur having a black fly, you will be roasted out of the tent.  Since it's on the insde of the fly I think that not oly would there be very little temp change in the tent it will also act as a black out material  making it so you could sleep better if you are light sensitive regarding your slumber.  I'm thinking of ordering some of this PVC lube to use in the sleeves of my early winters tents as it may also be easier to work with as it's white.  I also want some as I will run into tents that need to be treated as most peole would not want to embark on this journey.  It is a throw away, disposable world after all.

Hints with working with large amounts of dry lubricants:

You will need a good fine particle filter.  No matter how hard you try you will end up inhaling the stuff if you do not use one.

You will want to do this inside in a draft free area.  All it takes is some one opening the door and much of the lubricant becomes air born much like fly ash and it will get all over everything.

Do not try this in your living room.  I thought I could make it work.  I put my tent in front of the wood stove to heat up the offending material to make it more tacky so that the graphite would stick better.  I then placed the tent on the floor just in front of the wood stove and started to work.  As I was applying the graphite the fan from the wood stove kicked in a and poof.  The air was alive for days with the visual and tactical wonder of graphite.

Wear clothing and use materials that your ready to throw away as this stuff does not thoroughly wash out of every thing.

Do not try to apply any of this while the tent is standing . You must do this on a table or better yet on the floor with a hard even surface under it so that you can put much pressure into it.  There is a lot of rubbing involved.

When you think your done your not. Take the treated tent part(s) outside and place in the hot sun and then using your already dirty rags continue to rub the stuff in in the hot sun.  The more tacky and sticky you can get the material to become the faster and easier it will be for you to impregnate the dry lubricant into the the offending material.  This is accomplished by increasing the temp of the offending material.

I found that lightly damp rags and or large sponges work the best as rubbing implements.

When you think you are done then it’s time to take the wet rags/sponges and start cleaning.  Dip your rags/sponges in buckets of water until the water stays completly clean.  Keep going over the material until you can take white rags and rub the material until nothing comes off of the tent any longer.  This will also take a long time.

Take care to not touch any thing that you do not want this stuff on.  When your finished let all the rags and sponges dry out and put them in a plastic bag for later use or throw them away.  Use clothing that will only be used as work clothes.  You can wash them but I would just throw them away when your done esp. when you decide that you never want to do this again.

Remember, this take along time, a lot of effort and a bit of money.  You must find good reason to embark upon this process.  It is time consuming and is not economical if you have a cheap tent.  You either have to have a tent that is rare, or means a awful lot to you for some reason.

Let me know if I can be of further help.  Let me know if you come up with anything that I have not been able to find.  I’m sure that there very well may be products in your part of the world that are not available to me at this time. Please let me/us know what you do, if anything, and what your experiences are regarding the outcome of your project.

                       

6:31 p.m. on April 4, 2012 (EDT)
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@Babokulu:  Further thought on the matter lends me to believe that this white PVC lubricant my be a better choice for you.  Having a black floor and a blacked fly that lets less light in will make the tent seem smaller than it is, where as, if you can coat the floor/fly with a white material then it will lighten up the inside of the tent.  I'm currently trying to track down any UV information regarding this product for use on the outside of fly's and or tents.

Regarding your decision on if and how you decide to proceed with the treatment of your tent, I would only store the tent in a open and airy manor as I have found this storage method to retard the progression of the degradation of urethane materials if they have not reached a certain point.

8:09 a.m. on April 5, 2012 (EDT)
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Wow, interesting thread but I think you are all overthinking this one. Once the PU starts breaking down it is done. You can forestall the breakdown for a year or 2 by doing all these convoluted things to the fabrics but in the end it is a waste. What is your time worth? Toss it and get a new one.

10:46 a.m. on April 5, 2012 (EDT)
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 Toss it and get a new one.

Spoken like a true salesperson.

12:14 p.m. on April 5, 2012 (EDT)
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thetentman said:

Wow, interesting thread but I think you are all overthinking this one. Once the PU starts breaking down it is done. You can forestall the breakdown for a year or 2 by doing all these convoluted things to the fabrics but in the end it is a waste. What is your time worth? Toss it and get a new one.

" Toss it and get a new one" Ah, the true American mantra.  So are you going to get me a new Dana Design/Garuda Tambu or Trikaya?  Have you even tried to fix any of the problems that were talking about?  Do you know for a fact that any of these tents are not savable?  Do you know for a fact that these degrading materials cannot be recoated with a new waterproofing so that they can still be used?  I'm trying to find was to save older tents that may have historical value like Moss, Garuda, Dana design, TNF, Early winters, Serria Designs, etc. as well as tent's that have any other intrinsic and or sentimental value to the people that have used them for years.  If that's how you treat your gear, as throw away items, that’s your right.  I do not understand that way of thinking as when I buy (or even get it for free) a product I plan on having it for life or passing it on in some manner, not "Toss it and get a good one".  We have not even broached the subject of what new quality tents cost these days.  So in an answer to your question "What's your time worth"? Heck I don’t know, I haven't worked in over 12 years.  My time is worth doing the things that I enjoy doing.  One of which is investigating ways to keep things out of landfills.  I tell you what.  When you run into these quality tents that have these problems why don't you give me a mail and I may just take them of your hands so that they don't unnecessarily end up in a land fill.  Even if they can’t be saved the poles can be recycled as well as much of the material on the tent that is not going bad can be recycled into tarps and footprints.  So, no, I do not feel like I'm over thinking this one.

8:53 a.m. on April 6, 2012 (EDT)
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We are talking about a tent not a priceless relic. It is like a tool. When tools no longer are capable of performing their intended function then you toss them out. And yes I have repaired many a tent. In fact I worked in a Service Department that repaired, tents, stoves and could sew anything. The heritage of this shop was that back in the day they made canvas tents. And I know all the tricks to rewaterproofing a tent and in my humble opinion it is not just worth it for a number of reasons. You will never have confidence in the tent again being the main reason. Another would be your time. Repairing and recoating a tent can take hours. And then you have to tinker or rejigger it or it smells bad. You will never be done. And no coating available will be as good as a factory coating. I have better things to do. And some of the recoatings used are not optimal environmentally. Another reason is that nylon/polyester ages and wears out. UV damages the fabric, abrasions take there toll and the coatings begin to break down over time. I would estimate that all things being equal a tents expected life is between 18-15 years if made from nylon or polyester and 20 -30 years if canvas. Exceptions abound and things like packing it wet or premature chemical breakdown of the coatings can shorten this time frame considerably. You seem worried about the 'landfills' but advocate 'PVC lubricants.' Get over your bad self. I am also afraid you misunderstood my use of 'toss it'. Certainly recycle and reuse what you can. 15 years ago you could reuse and repurpose tent poles but not so much anymore. DAC poles are almost tent specific and most other poles and pole sections are of a custom design and so do not easily lend themselves to repurposing. If that's what you enjoy, have at it, but for most people without an emotional attachment to a tent retiring a now defective piece of equipment is not that hard. Most do not have the skill or expertise to do those repairs. Nor are they inclined to enjoy doing so. So for them and me, getting a new tent is a joyous occaision. One not to be taken lightly. We weigh it, hold it, compare it and dream about it before we decide. But it is only a means to an end. Not the Holy Grail.

6:42 p.m. on April 6, 2012 (EDT)
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thetentman said:

We are talking about a tent not a priceless relic. It is like a tool. When tools no longer are capable of performing their intended function then you toss them out. And yes I have repaired many a tent. In fact I worked in a Service Department that repaired, tents, stoves and could sew anything. The heritage of this shop was that back in the day they made canvas tents. And I know all the tricks to rewaterproofing a tent and in my humble opinion it is not just worth it for a number of reasons. You will never have confidence in the tent again being the main reason. Another would be your time. Repairing and recoating a tent can take hours. And then you have to tinker or rejigger it or it smells bad. You will never be done. And no coating available will be as good as a factory coating. I have better things to do. And some of the recoatings used are not optimal environmentally. Another reason is that nylon/polyester ages and wears out. UV damages the fabric, abrasions take there toll and the coatings begin to break down over time. I would estimate that all things being equal a tents expected life is between 18-15 years if made from nylon or polyester and 20 -30 years if canvas. Exceptions abound and things like packing it wet or premature chemical breakdown of the coatings can shorten this time frame considerably. You seem worried about the 'landfills' but advocate 'PVC lubricants.' Get over your bad self. I am also afraid you misunderstood my use of 'toss it'. Certainly recycle and reuse what you can. 15 years ago you could reuse and repurpose tent poles but not so much anymore. DAC poles are almost tent specific and most other poles and pole sections are of a custom design and so do not easily lend themselves to repurposing. If that's what you enjoy, have at it, but for most people without an emotional attachment to a tent retiring a now defective piece of equipment is not that hard. Most do not have the skill or expertise to do those repairs. Nor are they inclined to enjoy doing so. So for them and me, getting a new tent is a joyous occaision. One not to be taken lightly. We weigh it, hold it, compare it and dream about it before we decide. But it is only a means to an end. Not the Holy Grail.

 

Hey tent man,

Seems to me that all "priceless relics" started out as just things or tools.  Do you really think that the stone age flint tools were relics at their time of making and use?  I would guess not?  Do you think a flint blade handed down from father to son was?  Very likely so.  I don't know that I look at my tents and other gear a "relic's" but I do know that I do view them a valued pieces of equipment that quite often have many uses even if they cannot live up to the specifications that they were designed to because of age or use.  A very well used 4 season tent can quite often be used as a 2 or 3 season tent and or, for replacement parts of other tents that have not be so well used or compromised is some way.  One of the differences between you and me is that you look at your gear as throw away tools and I look to always find another porpose for my gear even when it cannot live up it's original specifications.

If you have read the entire thread you would have seen that I said in one post: "If you have a tent that really needs to be saved and the saving of the tent transcends the money and the amount of time you have, there most certainly are ways to do this.  If you do not have the time, money and fortitude to get the job done, then as has been suggesting in many different forms above, get another tent."  In another post I said: "Remember, this take along time, a lot of effort and a bit of money. You must find good reason to embark upon this process.  It is time consuming and is not economical if you have a cheap tent.  You either have to have a tent that is rare, or means a awful lot to you for some reason."

Yes, I would advocate using a very small amount of PVC lubricant, say 1 lb or less rather than sending 4-12 lbs of bulky material to a land fill.

You said: "15 years ago you could reuse and repurpose tent poles but not so much anymore. DAC poles are almost tent specific and most other poles and pole sections are of a custom design and so do not easily lend themselves to repurposing."

Well ok, first off, for the most part, the types of tents we are tiring to save are the older tents that are not using the newer DAC poles.  Secondly I do know that I can take a hack saw or band saw, shorten a newer DAC pole sand and clean the inside burrs and then add  a proper end or tip for a different purpose than it was intended.  I do know that if I had just bought a newer tent that was using the newer DAC poles you speak of and it needed to be re-water proofed I would would find the company that made the newer tent very suspect and unlikely to buy from that company again.  As you said: "I would estimate that all things being equal a tents expected life is between 18-15 years if made from nylon or polyester and 20 -30 years if canvas."  So maybe we should have the discussion about the newer DAC poles in 15-18 years.  Even then, the poles would still be very useful to someone who had a little used tent body of the same make/model where the poles were either lost or damaged.  Have you seen the price of a set of poles for a TNF Ring or Sleeve oval (relic's by the way) or TNF VE 23 or 24 as of late on Ebay?  I wonder what the price of used or recycled poles for a tent made by Hilleberg today will be in 15-18 years when someone needs them and can't get them.

If you had read the entire thread you would have read that one of the tent's we talking aount here was a inexpensive Rhino tent that was replace by the company.  Still, he wanted to find a way to fix the one that was degrading. I commend the fact that even though he did get a new replacement tent he did not just throw away his problem tent.  He of course does not live in America where all to often we do just "throw it away" when it does not meet our needs.  Regardless of his reasons, whether it's just for fun, or to satisfy his curiosity, or just to have a project to do I'm glad to see that a least a few people still value the already made product rather than dumping it for the product yet to be made.

I'm not trying to bust your chops here, but it appears to me that one of the differences between you and I is that you are a tent salesman and have a vested interest in people buying new tents.  Where as I'm a person who values gear that is already on the market trying to find ways to extend the life of the gear that is already out there by reusing/rehabilitating/cannibalizing and adapting older gear and their parts for further use.

Cheers, Brian

3:55 a.m. on April 7, 2012 (EDT)
52 reviewer rep
312 forum posts

I do know that I can take a hack saw or band saw, shorten a newer DAC pole sand and clean the inside burrs and then add  a proper end or tip for a different purpose than it was intended.

The DAC poles I have from different tents are just the same sections with a shorter end section and would work as stated above. And any tent with specific, angled sections or pre-curved poles, would mean breaking the pole up and using it for spares or even trading it with someone who needs those sections for spares. Stop tossing!

It would not make economic sense for DAC to manufacture tent-specific poles.

Identifying DAC poles from different eras with different diameters, individual sections that is, is a bit harder. At some point, I must have bought a 'spare' pole section for one of my tents. Problem is, it doesn't fit any of em. "All the gear...no idea", that's me.

7:02 a.m. on April 9, 2012 (EDT)
RETAILER
5 reviewer rep
47 forum posts

bri ann,

it's the tentman to you and please have fun fixing my old junk. And all I have left to say is WHATEVER!

2:40 a.m. on April 10, 2012 (EDT)
15 reviewer rep
30 forum posts

The NeverWet silcon coating has the promise of redefining waterproofing. This certainly could make respraying a sticky tent a much more attractive and sensible option. Granted, it looks a lot like a "pump and dump" stock scam, but who knows, maybe it'll live up to all the hype.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-V1OXt5MeVc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YqGkC5uJ0yM&feature=related

     

2:07 p.m. on April 13, 2012 (EDT)
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts

The NeverWet silcon coating has the promise of redefining waterproofing. This certainly could make respraying a sticky tent a much more attractive and sensible option. Granted, it looks a lot like a "pump and dump" stock scam, but who knows, maybe it'll live up to all the hype.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-V1OXt5MeVc

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YqGkC5uJ0yM&feature=related

     

 

I went and looked at the many descriptions of the NeverWet silcon product but can't seem to find it anywhere for sale. I would guess it will be very expensive when it comes out at first, though I hope not as it does sound very promising. Have you heard or seen anything regarding it's being for sale? If so let me know as I'll give it a try if it‘s not overly priced.

2:23 p.m. on April 13, 2012 (EDT)
0 reviewer rep
1,238 forum posts

bri ann,

it's the tentman to you and please have fun fixing my old junk. And all I have left to say is WHATEVER!

 

Hey "the tentman",

Thanks for your thought provoking response. Your use of the word WHATEVER was masterful. I look forward in working with you in recycling your "old junk" so that it may yet again live another life for some happy hiker. Please feel free to contact me when you have something for me to rehab.

Have a great day!

5:51 p.m. on April 13, 2012 (EDT)
344 reviewer rep
1,124 forum posts

I was going to say send it to me!

October 25, 2014
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