Burn Hole?

2:39 p.m. on March 6, 2014 (EST)
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Hey, all.

Looks like the 'ol TNF Thermoball took on a couple burn holes.

The holes are all smaller than dime-sized, but I don't want to go bleeding out my insulation or compromising the water-resistance of the jacket.

Researched the cost of sending it into a gear repair shop, and I don't think I can justify the $75/hour labor on a $200 jacket.

Was thinking about swinging by REI tonight, picking up a thing of Tenacious Tape in the closest matching color, and making the repair myself.

Would y'all advise using this tape for the repair?

Is there a better method out there?

If you can help, have used this tape before, or have any advice, let me know, and much appreciated!

4:42 p.m. on March 6, 2014 (EST)
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This is all I ever use and always take out several pre-cut patches in my ditty bag.


5:41 p.m. on March 6, 2014 (EST)
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Don't want to send it to TNF for repair? 

I use Duct tape for repairs. You can use a small square piece on both sides of the material then put a cloth over and iron it on a light setting. It works just as long as repair tape as the Duct tape has a nylon/cotton(?) material in the tape.

Duct tape also makes great long sticking bandages. I use a 2 inch square of sterile bandage under it. Doesn't come off even when wet.

5:45 p.m. on March 6, 2014 (EST)
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I use the Kenyon tape, too, for the same thing.  It is tape made of ripstop nylon so if the color is close the patch isn't too visible.  I had really small holes so I punched the patches out of the tape with a hole punch.  I have some of the tenacious tape too; it is more like smooth vinyl and is called tenacious because it is very sticky.  Antoerh alterntive, depending on the location of the hole would be to get your favorite decorative iron on patch and put that over the hole and disguise it that way. 

2:03 a.m. on March 7, 2014 (EST)
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TNF's turnaround is 6 weeks at the minimum, Gary - hitting the trail the weekend after this and will need it then (it's the only puffy jacket I own).

Wound up dropping into REI on the ride home and picking up a thing of Tenacious Tape.

Luckily, they'd one left in the brown "Earth" color that would best match the camouflage of my jacket. Also really glad I asked for the jacket in camo - were they out of brown, I likely could've gone with another color that would've fit in just as well.

Simple to use, and seems to hold fine. May keep a strip of it in my pack, even. Nice part of it is, if ever I do decide to have the jacket professionally repaired, I can peel it right off without damage to the garment (so they say).

Before this, it'd have been straight to the returns line, or to the checkout counter to buy a replacement. Funny how much of a motivator a tight economy can be!

3:08 p.m. on March 7, 2014 (EST)
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For "bb" size holes with continious filament insulation, I'll put a tiny piece of tenacious tape over the hole, then another piece about 1x1 inch to shore it up.
For larger holes, or more mobile insulation, I'll cut a small piece of tape and place it under the shell fabric, sticky side UP, then I'll put another teeny piece over the shell fabric, sticky side down. This creates a really secure sandwich.

4:10 p.m. on March 7, 2014 (EST)
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The real question is, what is a good patch for silnylon??  There does not seem to be one, even Tear Aid Type A doesn't work.  The solution I have found on my Hilleberg kerlon flies is---

**  For small holes to just dab a bit of McNett's Silnet and rub it in.

**  Bigger holes I use the above Kenyon ripstop tape with the patch area liberally covered with McNett's silnet first and then the patch placed on top.  I do both sides just in case.  Here's an example on my Keron tent after cleaning off ice but oops the simmerlite stove was under the tent vestibule fly.


5:33 p.m. on March 7, 2014 (EST)
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Rubber cement works well and so does a few stiches with fine thread. For outdoor use their is no reason to send it somewhere and try to make it perfect. The longer the trip, the more important it is to carry some repair items.

12:24 a.m. on March 8, 2014 (EST)
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Right on, ppine. Right on. 

I'd kick my own butt if I sent it off to be repaired professionally, got back out there, and put another hole or tear in it.

At that point, I'd surely pick the $5, DIY patch job over the $75-an-hour shop cost. 

Mind you, the cost of repair is relative to the cost of the item. Or is it?

Which brings me to open this topic up and ask - at what point do you send something off to be repaired professionally? What's the tipping point?

I'm gathering, Tipi, that there's not enough time inbetween damaging gear and setting up the next night's camp for your to ever have the opportunity or time for a professional repair. I know you've relied on cached spares, etc, but interested to hear what your tipping point is (if there is one?).

This year's skills-based for me. Headed out next weekend with a friend who's basically putting me through bushcraft boot camp. Figured might as well kick off my year by repairing my own jacket.

7:41 a.m. on March 8, 2014 (EST)
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You bring up the memory of pulling a long winter trip in the early 1990's whereby my old but excellent North Face down bag zipper broke and it could not be zipped . . . . and it was cold at night.  So I used my little sewing kit and completely sewed the broken zipper up from footbox to neck collar.  It was a hassle to get into but it worked, and later I scavenged a bivy sac zipper and replaced it.

As everyone knows, some things cannot be repaired, like the MSR Flex pot (been thru 3 in the last year) when the teflon starts chipping off and getting into my food.  Not good, but then the product falls out of my "circle of trust" and is dumped and never used again.  There are many examples of crappy gear which fails in the field but cannot be repaired, only later replaced.  The Sangean radios come to mind.

For the valuable stuff, well, after long use it is replaced with a brand new same piece or a same brand upgrade.  A good example is my Hilleberg Keron tent.  It is about ready to be completely replaced with a new Keron, but I'm trying to squeeze another year out of the thing, and the company DID send me a new inner tent when I complained about the elastic connectors failing.

But before a trip I try hard to inspect the tent and have replaced poles and shock cord and fixed any small holes and even washed it off with the garden hose.  I also silicone-grease the tent poles before each trip and inspect each pole joint for damage, etc.

And there's the burden of carrying double items for overkill relief if things go south and you cannot bail.  EX:  I carry an extra hipbelt buckle for my Mystery Ranch pack.  An extra stove pump for my MSR Simmerlite stove.  A coil of shock cord.  An extra tent pole section. 

The only thing I cache now is an extra Thermarest pad, as noted on a Thanksgiving trip when my Exped Downmat 9 blew a baffle and could not be repaired.  Of course, later at home the company sent me a brand new pad and only needed to see the pics of the old one in an email. 

10:09 a.m. on March 8, 2014 (EST)
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Professional help is usually only warranted for items that have to be structurally very sound so you can depend on them. I would not want to replace a zipper because it is too tedious and I have paid people to do that also.

6:56 p.m. on March 11, 2014 (EDT)
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For silnylon, I would use a piece of silnylon along with silnet or plain old silicone sealant as glue (which can be thinned with, if I remember correctly, white gas.)  For a piece of silhylon for a small patch, I first look for extra in the hems and seam allowances.  Sometimes there is a silnylon stake or pole or stuff bag included which can sacrifice some material either from the seam allowance or even the flap at the mouth of stuff sack.  Gear Aid also makes a repair kit called Sil-Fix which has patches in it.

9:46 a.m. on March 30, 2014 (EDT)
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The hardware store stocks several tape products that will suffice.  I used to have a down coat that got thoroughly trashed from skiing through the trees.  It was a science project in its day, sporting a half dozen different kinds of field repairs consisting of sewing, various tapes and adhesives, and hybrids of these options.  Nylon reinforced postal shipping tape worked well for areas subjected to tugging forces, while duct tape worked for repairs addressing water issues and articles receiving relatively little tugging.  Regular cellophane shipping tape worked surprisingly well, but all the tape solutions required a fresh replacement every now and then.  Based on these experiences I now provision my repair kit with a duct tape like product lacking the fiber reinforcing fibers.


4:24 p.m. on March 31, 2014 (EDT)
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I recently tore the shell of my new Big Agnes Shovelhead when a pocket zipper got jammed on shell fabric inside the pocket (augh!). Since it was a tear (not a hole) I sealed the 1-inch tear or so with Seam Grip and all is well.

For an actual hole, I've done like Seth mentioned and patched with Tenacious Tape or something similar, sandwiching with a piece on either side (if you can manage it).

10:41 p.m. on March 31, 2014 (EDT)
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Thanks, y'all. Wound up using Tenacious Tape. It's really great stuff, and I actually carry the leftovers with me now for field repairs, if ever the need arises. So far, so good - review for this one is half written. Not only was it easy to use, but came in a color matching my jacket, and looks a lot more professional than I thought it would be! We'll see how it holds up over the long haul, but for now, I'm nothing but impressed.

9:45 a.m. on April 1, 2014 (EDT)
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I patched my Montbell Alpine Light Down Parka with Tenacious Tape, too. It worked like a charm and the parka is as good as new. I am glad to see you found it, or I was going to suggest it to you.

2:59 p.m. on April 1, 2014 (EDT)
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Eric - that's awesome that you're doing a "bushcraft boot camp".  That kind of thing appeals to me too.  I try to do little bushcraft projects when I make camp so I can keep up with my skills.  I'm not saying I'm any good at it - but I enjoy it.  :)

May 21, 2018
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