Trail tarp advice?

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Silky921

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Here's my 7x7 from Primitive Panther. Plenty big enough for me and my gear at camp. Plus able to rig it a few ways if the weather doesn't cooperate.
 

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Last week my oilskin from the tentsmith arrived. Can’t wait to use it. It was on sale because it is not 8x8, they list it as 8’2” wide by 7’7” long and on sale for $192.00 I just checked the website and they still have it listed. Go to menu and click on sale.
 

stewart.leach

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I made my tarp tent//plow point tent from a fabric called #30 pocket drill from JoAnn Fabrics. This is an all cotton tightly woven light canvas. Before cutting and sewing fabric was washed and dried twice on hottest machine settings.

Leftover fabric was cut into 6" triangular reinforces for each corner, and center and quarter points on each side. Cut with pinking shears, the reinforces were included in the hems. Fabric was also used to make tie tapes for each corner and center point. Cut strips 30" long by 3'wide, fold edges into center, fold again and sew down middle to get a strip 3/4" wide. Stake loops of this stripping attach at the quarter points.

Joining seams for the panels are the simplest possible: lay two panels one on top of the over, matching edges and sew 3/4" from the side. Unfold, iron both edges to one side, and sew through three layers 1/2" from the first stitching. Selvage edges are folded in once and sewn down, including the reinforcements. Cut edges are folded twice and sewn down.

Any good sewing machine will handle this project. You need large size, heavy duty needles, and UV-resistant heavy duty thread. Ask the sewing store people for help. If you dye it, do individual panels at a time in an enamel ware pot, measuring the dye carefully to get an even shade. My choice for waterproofing is a product called "Cottonpruf", available at REI or online.

Yes, this is a lot of work, but you wind up with an excellent tent that is sturdy but not too heavy,
 

stewart.leach

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I’ve just about talked myself into buying, or maybe making, an oilskin tarp / Diamond shelter. I’ll use it both for period camp and probably off my motorcycle. Seems like a good idea to get some opinions from those of you who’ve used them.

Tentsmiths, Panther Primitives, or homemade? 7x7 or 8x8? Any other thoughts or comments?

Thanks much for any guidance you can provide.
In my Boy Scouts days- many moons ago- I made and used several tarp tents from the design in the old scout manual with the Great Spirit rising in the smoke from a campfire. Made one again a few years ago, out of #40 cotton pocket drill fabric, a light canvas. Finished size is 9 x 9 feet. The BSA design has a lot of tie tapes to facilitate many setup variations. I simplified, leaving out most tie tapes in the body of the tent. Washed and dried the fabric twice on hottest settings on a laundromat machine before cutting. Kept edge seams simple, one fold and stitch down. Selvage edges need no special technique, cut edges were pinked and worked out fine. Tie tapes are 3 feet long, folded in half, every 18 inches all the way around. Triangular reinforce for tapes is inserted into edge seams, nothing fancy, just one layer with pinked edges. A 12 inch square center patch takes the wear for a prop stick.

If I were to sew up another one I would install brass grommets in the center of each side.
 

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I made my tarp tent//plow point tent from a fabric called #30 pocket drill from JoAnn Fabrics. This is an all cotton tightly woven light canvas. Before cutting and sewing fabric was washed and dried twice on hottest machine settings.

Any good sewing machine will handle this project. You need large size, heavy duty needles, and UV-resistant heavy duty thread. Ask the sewing store people for help.

Yes, this is a lot of work, but you wind up with an excellent tent that is sturdy but not too heavy,

In my Boy Scouts days- many moons ago- I made and used several tarp tents from the design in the old scout manual ..., out of #40 cotton pocket drill fabric, a light canvas. Finished size is 9 x 9 feet.

If I were to sew up another one I would install brass grommets in the center of each side.
So any of the above DIY shelters will work, and work very well.

You have to decide if you want to spend the money, on at least use some stuff that was part of the technology of the time period or not. A lot of the modern canvas styles out there and brass grommets were not around in the 18th century, so wouldn't work for me... BUT...., on the other hand these shelters are not really "correct" anyway..., so I'm talking about an aesthetics choice, not an authenticity choice. (I hide my 2 gallon jug in a nail keg and recently covered the wire and the rims on the keg with rope "hoops" for use in camp.., but that's an aesthetic choice too ;))

So you can find linen, either actual linen "canvas" or lighter linen, or less expensive fustain (linen and cotton mix), and use that as the foundation fabric for the shelter.

LD
 

bodark

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Bushcraft Spain has a very nice oilskin tarp as well. Haven’t had a chance to take it out on the trail just yet but the quality seems top notch. I went with the 8x8 and it made it to my door in less than 2 weeks.
 

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