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Discussion in 'Camping Talk' started by Itch2Scratch, Jan 18, 2007.
Please tell everyone what type of tent you use as well as what you like and dislike about it.
i think the new dome tents are the best thing since heat resistant peanut butter.
We currently have 2 tents, both are Ozark Trail's. One is a small 2 person dome tent and the other is like a 5 or 6 person dome tent. They are ok for the price, but I would like something a little nicer.
I've been wanting to get a larger tent for the family, something like an 80-10 person 3 room tent. We're only a family of 4, 5 if you count our Siberian husky, but we like to have plenty or room in the tent in case we're stuck inside during bad weather.
Do any of you have any recommendations on a tent that fits this description?
I've got a Coleman wall tent I bought in '81, great tent, never leaked, a 2 man Kelty backpacking tent, nice one, and a 3 man Coleman dome tent.
I bought a Coleman tent last year and was was very disappointed. Stupid me, waited til camping day to set it up and it lacked 2 poles. Luckily I had poles from a different tent on hand. The windows ripped and the clips that held the poles broke in a t-storm. I think it was just a bad model. It was a 3 room dome. I've heard a lot of good things about Coleman tents. On the other hand, they impressed me w/their customer service. I called the company and they said "Put it on the porch." They arranged pick up and a quick refund. With the excellent customer service, I'd be willing to try another Coleman.
we have had both coleman and ozark trail cabin tents and dome tents before, as of this minute...coleman dome is what we have and it has worked out great except for the fact that its not a cold weather tent. we will be gettin two more tents this year, another dome for one of the kids and a larger one for me and hershell for extra storage space to have since one of ours has wore out from use and storage and we will be giving our older dome to the one of the kids so we each have our own. they will more than likely be domes, although i would love to have a canvas cabin tent. if it come down to it and i really had my way....we'd have a camper... lol.
Is there any advantage for Domes over regular tents?
if its just me, I like sleeping with out one. if it is raining, I use a tarp to keep the rain off. If I have the kids. I use a two room colman. It works good but is a pain to set up by yourself.
stay away from the coleman tents with the front porch. Used one about 2 weeks ago and in anywind or storm the rain tarp WILL come off. There seems to be no way to keep this from happening.
i have a ozark trail 10.5'X16' dome that i got at walmart for $50. very pleased with it. first time i took it out, we had a terrible thunderstorm and the tent held up well. lol had about 2 inches of water runnin under it it rained so hard. it did leak a little and drip along the seams, but we had not yet used seam sealer, and didnt know that most if not all tents dont come treated. the setup is easy and can be done by 1 person, but much easier with 2 people. there are plenty of windows, and the top is screened, so theres good ventilation. plenty room. we have a queen size airmattress and that only takes up about 1/2 the floor space. decent center hight, im 6'2 and can walk around without touchin the ceiling in the center.
the only advantages i can see in havin domes is maybe that they are more aerodynamic maybe....wind goes over and around better than cabin tents and they have mostly the fiberglass poles that are more flexable when puttin them up. i dont know other than that, was just my own opinion..i could be wrong.
Well I've used dome tents for a few years now and they are more compact and easier to set up than the old canvas style tent that I have. They are also lighter. I have used a Hillary sold by sears. The only problem I ever had with it was one of the poles broke because of the weight of the snow that laid on it too long. One drawback was I could not stand up in it. I recently replaced it with a coleman with the bathtub bottom and 6 ft high. It's roomier but does not have a low profile in wind and tends to want to lay over. I always put up a fly in front of my door which I call my porch. It keeps the inside cleaner during bad conditions.
If anyone has some homemade water proofing ideas for canvas I would be interested in hear about it.
Gary, on your question about domes
Usually you can get a dome tent a lot cheaper than a cabin type tent, and that is probably the biggest appeal. They are also a lot easier to set up, and tend to be lighter and take up less packed space. A well designed dome will shed more wind than a comparable cabin tent, but there are a lot of cheaper made dome tents out there, and while they are adequate for most peoples needs, dont expect them to survive winds over 30-40mph without some problems.
There are some pretty good A-Frame tents out there too, like the Eureka Timberlines, but you sacrifice a lot of interior volume because of the sloping walls when compared to a dome or cabin tent.
I was camping at a lake in eastern Colorado once when a big windstorm came through, and by the time it was done, it had knocked down all but 3 tents in the campground. One of the survivors was a little childrens size dome tent, another was my tent, which wasnt a dome, but a real low profile backpacking tent, and the 3rd one was a big canvas / steel framed cabin tent.
About a dozen bigger dome tents and lighter weight cabin tents were knocked down or destroyed in that storm. There are some very sturdy dome tents on the market, but a lot of it comes down to the specific design and construction, and a lot of it goes back to how well its pitched. A lot of the cheaper domes just dont have enough poles. An 8x8 or 9x9 dome with only 2 poles just wont take much wind. Cabelas sells one that size that has 6 poles, and its one of the sturdiest ones Ive seen. It also costs 300-400 dollars, and weighs 40lbs.
My tent survived that wind storm because it was small, and because it was tied off pretty well, but there were some iffy moments. The childs dome survived because it was small, and the big cabin tent held up because it was well pitched and built like a tank.
i have a ozark trail tent i dont remember the exact size but the thing is huge ( its either a ten or fifteen man tent ) i can stand up almost any place in the tent and not touch the ceiling ( i am five foot ten or eleven tall ) the only down side is that it takes a while to set up and every one with me stores there stuff in it but i still have plenty of room
There are exceptions to everything, but as a general rule, domes will handle heavy weather better than cabin style tents. Not all domes are equal, by a long shot...like Gary said, more poles is better, and this is especially true when you get into the larger sizes. The models that clip to the poles go up like a dream, but they aren't as tough as sleeve/pole interfaces. Aluminum poles are stronger/lighter than fiberglass.
The strongest models are known as geodesic domes, but they are heavier, more expensive, and take more effort to errect.
A rainfly that only provides partial coverage will only give partial protection...the best tents will have a full fly.
The stakes that come with most tents are a (bad) joke. Get some serious stakes that are appropriate for the site you'll be using, and stake the sucker down every place and way you can.
Domes are known as freestanding, and that makes for two very nice features: you can pick them up and shake out all of the junk you track in, and they can be relocated, if need be.
I'm looking at several new tents. What do you guys think of Swiss Gear and Kelty tents?
Kelty makes a good tent. I would like to get one someday when my $16, three man tent from the Sports Authority finally gives it up. Although, thus far, it's probably the best tent in the world for the money. I've had it out about 30-40 times in the past 4 years, in all kinds of weather, and have yet to get wet.
Kelty is generally top quality, and what I've seen of the Swiss Gear tents looks pretty good, too. And don't look past Eureka - they make a few models I wouldn't own, but they make some top rate tents, too.
Dave's advice on aluminium poles being stronger and lighter is also something to keep in mind. *Usually* aluminium poles are a sign of a better quality tent.
I have a Swiss Gear Tent. It's a big dome tent. I think it is either 12X12 or 14X14. It's a great tent, cause it has two rooms. We use one for a bedroom and the other to store our gear. It is big enough to put a table to play cards on or even cook if we run into bad weather. It's heavy, and takes a little time to setup, but if I'm going to spend more than a couple of days, it is better than my 3 man dome.
My small 3man dome, I can setup by myself, but you can't stand up in it and there isn't much room after we put in a queen size air mattress in it . The swiss tent is big and heavy, takes two people to set it up, but it is tall with lots of room. There is a trade off with both of them. A lot depends on how much comfort you are looking for. How often you are going to use it, how many days in a row will you camp.
I do like dome tent, cause they can be easily moved without taking them down.