Equipment

Tarptent making over Christmas (Anna)

A sketch made in Sketch up.

 

During this years Christmas, while visiting my mother, I have finally taking up my tent project again. It has been berried three years now and I was surprised to find it all most ready and also on how well I seem to have made it. Why I didn’t finish it back then is something I don’t remember, maybe I lost my believes in succeed in my project. At the moment I have high believes that it will work out just fine.

The only reason I did not finish it now was that I missed out some things to construct the fastening device at the back of the tent. When this is ready I will test to set up the tent in the field. I need to have it up to do the last decisions about how to solve the closing of the opening in the front.

The tent is a variation of Henry Shires tarptent and I have used some of his original pattern and instructions but I adjust it a bit:
www.tarptent.com/projects/tarpdesign.html

It is actually not so difficult to make your own tent, but it can be a bit tricky to handle all this huge amount of fabric which also is very slippery. You will need some space, I am happy that my mother is a tailor so she has a big room and a big cutting table that I can use.

It is also good if you have the possibility to set up the tent inside while testing as when it still not ready it is also quite fragile so even a breath of wind can make damages.

The fabric I choose to use is a very light sil nylon bought from www.extremtextil.de , (I cant really recall the weight but I think it was something like 60-80 gr). As mosquito net I used a fabric that you can buy at IKEA called SARITA. I used this as I have found other peoples recommendations to use this fabric, it is very light and cheap :) For the floor I used a little more strong fabric than the sil nylon. I bought it from www.shelby.fi

The goal is that my tent will have a weight of 1 kilo with the sticks.

I have got many nice tips from many different sites on the internet by people sharing their experiences in making their own tents, Among those is www.andersj.se and also the forum on the Swedish site: utsidan.se

I will soon post some images of my tent project and also try to make a closer description on how I made it.

 

A short follow-up on my tarptent project

Last weekend me and Yrr joined Amit and Gunnel for a sawing session at Amits house in Hammenhög. Amit has a very big space, very suitable for a tarptent-project. It is so big that you easily  can set the tent up indoors which is very good before you have all fixing/secure points ready, a wind can easily ruin your project.

Yrr started with her rain jacket. She has found such a nice and beautiful fabric for this and she will write a post about this soon.

The tent is all most ready, and I thought I would be finish it, at least so much that I could make a outdoor test. But the bow construction was more tricky than I had imagine and it was really important to get it right as the the tent would easily break if I made a bad solution.

The next step is to set the last fixing points and then when I can set it up I will find out a closing/opening construction. I would like to avoid zipper so I will probably use Velcro.

 

testing of the tarptent indoor

Yrr, Gunnel and I making one of the first set-up. I have to say it looks promising. (foto. Amit Sen)

 

 

 

Annas packlist in the Pyrenees 2010

This is my packlist from our hike in the Pyrenees in summer 2010.

2 tank tops 147
1 long-sleeved 110
1 small wool sweater 143
1 Iclandic sweater (DIY) 256
1 windjacket 414
1 rain poncho (1 euro) 47
1 zip-off trousers (wearing) 360
3 pair of briefs 83
3 pair of socks 90
1 pair of wool tights 112
1 buff 36
1 skirt 142
1 hat 104
1 sport bra 68
First-aid kit: 271
Steri-Strip™ Adhesive Skin Closures
Elastic bandage
Blister blocks
Band-Aid
Medicin
Disinfectant solution
Wound compresses
Utensils:
Plate/bowl with cover 129
Spoon 8
Knife 68
Whisk 23
Mug 23
Tea-strainer 17
Corkscrew 40
Dried food 1074
Tea
Milk powder
Coconut powder
Couscous
Lentil
Fruit purée
Olive oil 181
Toiletries: 746
Towel
Toothbrush
Toothpaste
Soap/schampo
Lodtion
Sunblocker
Sunblocker stift
Earplugs
Pinsett
ETC
Sleep
Tarp tent 1013
Sleeping bag 794
Ground sheet 305
Resquekit:
Gaffatejp 113
Spinnaker tape 82
Sewing things  9
Thread 8
Spare parts back pack 43
String 13
Other things
Walking sticks 472
Boots
Teva sandal 403
Compass 7
Maps 259
Guidebook (1 st) 185
Guidebook (1 st) 271
Pen 5
Notebook 22
Passport 53
Money
Ticket
Camera 335
Camera stativ 46
Charger phone 65
Charger camera 136
Phone 89
Binoculars 218
Washing powder 128
Sitting ground sheet 16
Reading glasses 44
Flashlight 15
Backpack 575
TOTAL SUM 10 416
SUM EXCL WEARING CLOTHES/FOOD/STICKS 8 013

Finding the right tent!

There is so many things you have to consider while picking gear for your hike. As our next hike will last for four month you will have to consider some other things. You really need to find stable, reliable and strong gear.

One thing we have to find now is a suitable tent. Some of the requirements is that it has to be lightweight and at the same time both comfortable and withstand bad weather.

On internet you can find plenty of website and forums with reviews and discussions about gear for your hike.

The first tent we thought of was Stephenson’s Warmlite but at the moment I have second thoughts as I have read some reviews about it and it seems a bit small to sit two person at the same time.

We have before used a very light tarptent from tarptent.com. It is very nice but a bit uncomfortable as you can’t sit up straight inside it and you have to crawl out and in. For shorter hikes this works all right but for a long distance hike I think you should use a bit more comfortable one. It should also feel safe and cope with heavy weather with strong wind and rain.

I have been looking at some other tents from tarptent.com, Scarp 2 (ca 1,7 kg)and StratoSpire 2 (1,1 kg), Double Rainbow (1,2 kg). All of them seems really nice. StratoSpire 2 and Rainbow is much lighter then the Scarp 2, but they all seems comfortable, roomy and they have space also for your package. Double rainbow feels a bit smaller but two person can still sit up at the same time. My experience also tells me tarptens.com tents usually are very fast and easy to set up which is especially of importance if it is bad weather and when tired. All three also comes with a really nice price compare to many other lightweight tents.
Take a look at them on Youtube. StratoSpire , Double Rainbow , Scarp 2

I think I like Scarp 2 best for it’s comfort but it is a bit heavy compare to the other two. With some extra equipment this one also can be used in winter time but I guess it will be a bit heaver than 1,7 kg then.

If any tips or advice or thoughts on these tents or any other for that matter, please let us know.

 

Annas latest backpack: [AK05]

My latest backpack (AK05) differs a bit from my previous models. It is made of silnylon and for the back and bottom I have used a bit stronger material, normally used for tent floors etc. This is the same principal I have used before. I am very happy with it and think I have improved some things. What I like and what I think will work really good is the mesh pockets on the outside that can be used for wet or dirty clothes, tent or other things you want carry inside the pack. It will also be very useful for things you want to reach easily during the day like lunch, stove etc.

 

AK05 UL-backpack

 

The top pocket and top closure also have much better fit and construction than before, a solution I am very happy with. I will soon take some better pictures on this and post here.

The pack is very light, about 330 gram., which is about 200 gr less than before.

I made this pack for my boyfriend and I am now planing to make my self a similar one to be used on my long-distance hike this summer. Just to be on the safe side as I will be using it for a long period I want to make it in a little stronger fabric than silnylon.  I am plan to use Dyneema Ripstop, some part will probably be made with a little lighter fabric.

 

AK05 UL backpack

Our new tent has arrived!

The tent we choosed to use for our hike is Scarp2 (tarptent.com). It is a bit heavy (1,6 kg) but we think it is worth it as it will give us the comfort we wish to have on our long-distance hike. Still it actually is a bit lighter than expected but probably after seamsealing all the seams this probably will add up to a total weight of 1.7 kg, according to the specifications found on their website.

We will soon test it in the field. Afterward we will post a review and some images here.

 

Our new tent, Scarp2 from Tarptent.com

UL wallet

UL-wallet made in Silnylon

Today I (Anna) made myself an UL (ultralight) wallet. I am quite happy with the result, even though I could have sewn it a little bit nicer. The next one will be much nicer looking as I know how to make it now.

The weight is only really nice, only 4gr and can hold 1 credit-card, 1 identity-card and some money. I used red silnylon.

 

UL-wallet made in Silnylon

UL-wallet

Mountainhikers