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rodger.

Any campers?

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I'm not a huge outdoors guy, but like to camp a few times a year.  I just came back from Algonquin, and it was awesome!

Problem is, my tent leaked around the bottom seams, so it's time to apply a seam sealer.  Anyone have any advice/experience with this?  I watched a few YouTube videos, but we all know how that is.

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Set it up outdoors and go at it. It's like shellac in that you want to lay it down and move on. Don't muck about too much. Try to put the sealer just where you want it. I use some stuff called Seam Grip or Sil Net. Some brands tell you to wipe the seams with alcohol just prior to application which supposedly allows the sealer to get down into the weave of the nylon and helps adhesion.

I try not to make the bead too thin because it seems that over time the thinnest stuff starts to lift off first. Follow manufacturer's instructions on which surface to seal (inside, outside, or both).

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Sorry to bump an old thread, but there's more to this than just the seams.  If your ground seams are leaking, figure out why they are leaking.  There's usually one of two reasons a ground seam will leak:

1) Tent placement.  Always look around for the best spot, imagine what the ground will look like under a heavy rain, don't place the tent where you think the water will pool. 

2) Fly coverage.  A well designed tent will have enough rain fly coverage so the ground seams aren't getting hit with direct rain.  If the tent is a budget model, with just a beanie cap as a rain fly, it's time to either get a new tent or design a new rain fly that will give complete coverage to the tent.  

Usually the ground seams are are the heaviest ones, as they take the forces involved with tightly staking the tent.  And because they are the ground seams, they aren't usually the best looking, as the are basically a mitered joint (most of the rest of the seams on a good tent will be lap style joints).   This allows the manufacturer to make those seams extra beefy.  Usually the water will come through the wall/floor material before it will come through floor seams.  

Now all that said, of course seal the seams.  You should seal your seams every year or two anyways.  All the seams that are exposed to the elements should be sealed, fly, walls, floor.    Setup the tent, and apply a good coating to both sides of each seam, and let it dry.   

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I may be going camping this summer because its something the wife and I can do together. I dont think we will be staying in a tent because we are to darn old for that but please enjoy. Its great fun.

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I recently transitioned to a hammock and I don't see myself ever going back to a tent.  The hammock is ultralight and great for backpacking, you're off the ground so there's no risk of getting wet through the seams, and comfort?...no comparison.  I've always hated sleeping in a tent and I found out why...it sucks!  Hammock sleeping is amazing, like you're in a womb or something.  And with an under-quilt it's just as warm as any tent.  I bought this bad mofo - Warbonnet Blackbird...

https://www.warbonnetoutdoors.com/product/blackbird/

Image result for warbonnet blackbird

 

And a Mamajamba tarp...

https://www.warbonnetoutdoors.com/product/mamajamba/

 

Image result for warbonnet mamajamba

 

Still need to buy an under-quilt but I have to sell my tent and pad first.  Anyone wanna buy a Big Agnes Copper Spur UL and a Thermarest Neo-Air?  :D

 

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Why would you camp where there aren't trees? 

Hammocks are the best. 

 

FWIW, I have hammocked in the desert.  I used conc. form stakes and some big dowels as trees with steel cable to the conc. stakes.  Hung just fine for a week of dirt bike riding.

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20 minutes ago, mat60 said:

Where does the wife sleep.

She's not into backcountry camping.  When we go as a family I take the big stupid house of a tent.  I go backpacking with a group of buddies that includes no women.

 

20 minutes ago, Chestnut said:

What do you do when you don't have trees?

 

17 minutes ago, xxdabroxx said:

Why would you camp where there aren't trees?

 

Exactly.

I do most of my backpacking/camping/canoeing in the Ozarks which is an oak/hickory forest.  You can't walk five feet without running into a pair of huge trees.  And my other destinations of interest are other mountain range forests.  I have no desire to backpack in the desert.

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I was introduced to hammocks like this in the Kalahari. I loved it. Posts were drilled into the concrete like desert floor. For overnight that was enough. I likely won't sell my tent soon because most national parks and local state parks do not allow tying off to a tree. It's a bummer. 

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31 minutes ago, C Shaffer said:

I was introduced to hammocks like this in the Kalahari. I loved it. Posts were drilled into the concrete like desert floor. For overnight that was enough. I likely won't sell my tent soon because most national parks and local state parks do not allow tying off to a tree. It's a bummer. 

If you know something I don't, please inform me...but I don't think that's necessarily true.  It seems that hammocks are no more restricted than tents based on the tiny bit of NPS wording I've found...

 

1. Camping is permitted only at designated backcountry campsites and shelters.

7. Backcountry permit holders may not use tents at shelters.

8. Hammocks may only be used within designated backcountry campsites. They may not be used inside shelters and may not be attached to shelters in any way.

 

Seems to me the wording indicates that ANY camping is only permitted at designated backcountry sites and shelters...why they called out hammocks additionally makes no sense to me.

And anyway...the webbing straps I have on my hammock are absolutely harmless to trees, and I think any reasonable park ranger would know that...it's not as if I tie off with paracord that could slice into the bark of a young tree.  I'll take my chances.

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@Eric. I don't disagree. It may be the parks we have tented so far so not have "backcountry" sites. I cannot imagine anything I would do would cause any tree distress. 

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The straps E mentioned are like seat belt webbing. They will bear a lot of weight. The hammock is hung often from rope similar to 550 but bigger. An aluminum carabiner will suspend your pack from rope or tree quite nicely. Junk around a tree. 

IMG_2066.JPG

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12 minutes ago, Isaac Gaetz said:

Just wondering, where does the rest of your gear go while you are in the hammock?

 

5 minutes ago, C Shaffer said:

The straps E mentioned are like seat belt webbing. They will bear a lot of weight. The hammock is hung often from rope similar to 550 but bigger. An aluminum carabiner will suspend your pack from rope or tree quite nicely. 

 

Yeah in a torrential downpour you can hang your gear from your hammock webbing if you have to, otherwise it just stays under the tarp at my feet or I'll hang my backpack on a tree nearby.

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You guys are fortunate in ways.  In the Sierra back country here in California everything you do on a backpacking trip revolves around keeping your stuff out of the bears possession.  It is now a federal regulation in most parts of the Sierras that you use a bear canister to store food stuffs and anything else the bears can sniff out.  Even things that you don't think they can smell like freeze dried food, ramen, bug juice and your unscented what ever.  Get caught not caring a bear canister and it is a pretty steep fine and the tell you the get out of the forest now.

In the camp grounds in the parks they have bear boxes that are about 36 Deep X 24 High X 42 Wide made out of 1/4 plate steel and require an apposable thumb to open.  Everything has to be stored in there ice chests, toiletries, baby wipes, all that smelly stuff.

Carus' picture makes me envious.

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57 minutes ago, Immortan D said:

Portable hammock stand:

In the lightweight and portable argument this works how? My 3 person tent is tiny and for sure weighs less then that.

I'm a stomach sleeper anyway so the whole hammock thing has me cringing. I get my best night sleep on the floor or ground. I also like plains camping which is neither desert or forest.

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5 minutes ago, Chet K. said:

Carus' picture makes me envious.

Lions, hyena, elephants, wild dogs...we just figured we can't stop them if they really want it. 

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10 minutes ago, Chestnut said:

In the lightweight and portable argument this works how? My 3 person tent is tiny and for sure weighs less then that.

I'm a stomach sleeper anyway so the whole hammock thing has me cringing. I get my best night sleep on the floor or ground. I also like plains camping which is neither desert or forest.

I like napping on hammocks. A full night there would break my neck.

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5 minutes ago, Immortan D said:

I like napping on hammocks. A full night there would break my neck.

You learn how to do it right rather quickly. A diagonal orientation can get you rather flat. 

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13 hours ago, C Shaffer said:

You learn how to do it right rather quickly. A diagonal orientation can get you rather flat. 

That's right.  I'm not sure about stomach sleeping but if you sleep correctly in a hammock you can side sleep very comfortably.  Good hammocks allow you to sleep diagonally which gets you very flat and way more comfortable than any air mattress.  If you're truly a stomach sleeper then you probably are stuck in a tent and I'm sorry for you.  I've spent many many nights in a tent in my life and I can only think of a few that were enjoyable.

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I sleep on my side and cant stay to long before I need to turn to the other.    I think Im stuck with a 24ft camper with air, heat, and a darn nice bed to sleep in. In the morning I can wash my stuff and not need to poop in the woods. :)

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