MC Tents, why so much $$

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by BikeMan, Dec 19, 2012.

  1. BigDoc

    BigDoc Been here awhile

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    Less than $3.00 for quality stakes.


    http://www.harborfreight.com/catalogsearch/result?q=tent+stakes
    #61
  2. Twohondas

    Twohondas Long timer

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    Go down to REI and buy the real steal steel pegs ....cheap!

    Or even better go to hardware store and get a really big nail with a washer. These really work well especially in sand.

    Lightweight AL pegs found in all good backpacking tents are great for backpacking but NOT for old guys setting up at night from a MC ride.
    #62
  3. Okie Preacher

    Okie Preacher Been here awhile

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    #63
  4. VFR

    VFR Been here awhile

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    I just saw this thread. The tent the OP was referring to was a Catoma tent. Those are a little unique in that they are "60 Second Tents". The entire tent is self-contained. You just unwrap it, shake it out, and click the poles into place--tent is setup in ~one minute.

    Their tents are geared more toward firefighters that have to be able to set up & break down their equipment very quickly. Weight & length is not as much of an issue as it would be for motorcycle campers or backpackers. That said, their tents are longer & heavier than most. Their 2 plus 2 model is a monster for bike camping.

    I have a Catoma Falcon, which at the time was the lightest, smallest, & least expensive tent they made. I learned the hard way that when you are camping in a mosquito infested area, you want to be able to set your tent up & be inside it quickly... My friends that I was riding with were both inside their tents laughing like crazy while I was outside unfolding poles & setting my tent up in a hoard of mosquitoes while swearing a blue streak. We camped in a different place every night on the road & that tent paid off big time.

    I also have a Nemo Losi 2P tent & a Marmot Limelight 3. I bought those more for use at a destination camping trip where I needed vestibule space for my gear. Both are lightweight tents with short pole sections.

    My first motorcycle camping tent was an REI Half Dome bought on eBay for$80. The seller was upgrading to a newer model of the same tent & had taken very good care of this one. I figured I couldn't lose on the deal--used it for years & was hard pressed to find anything better. I replaced it with the Marmot for more floor space & headroom. That REI tent was & still is a great bargain.

    Bottom line: Buy the tent that fits what you plan to do with it & that fits your budget. One friend buys Wal Mart tents & has gone through several in a year. He now has Eureka. Bought new aluminum poles to replace the fiberglass ones so it would pack smaller.

    There are a ton of threads here on tents along with ten times as many opinions as to what the best one is.....
    #64
  5. OhBoy

    OhBoy Got Out

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    light small cheap $120 factory outlet
    llbean
    shown here without the fly
    [​IMG]
    #65
  6. Downs

    Downs KK6RBI

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    I like those kinds of tents though there's no room inside for gear. Does the fly create a "vestibule" out front?


    Sent from my iPhone
    #66
  7. mikesova

    mikesova Michigander

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    I'm a big fan of the Kelty Zenith 2, that I bought at Target for 40 bucks. It was basically the same as another Kelty tent, except it came with fiberglass poles instead of lightweight aluminum.

    [​IMG]

    (not my pic)
    #67
  8. The Letter J

    The Letter J lost in the 690 mega

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    I was hoping to find that one locally but had no luck. I did buy the kelty salida which is the same thing but with aluminum poles. I believe it was about $150. It met all my criteria for space/easy setup/packed size/single vestibule/and while it wasnt a big factor for me it is fairly lightweight. The packed length is 17" which was the maximum that i could fit in my bag. I've only used it on one trip so far so I can't comment on long term durability yet but I think it was a good buy (so far!)

    Another one I looked at is about $40 at wally world or big5 and packs down to 13" in length http://www.stansport.com/index.php/camp-and-hike/tents/tents/723-200-63-wwd.html

    Another one that seemed worth looking at is this http://www.cabelas.com/dome-backpac...1&mr:keyword=&mr:match=&mr:filter=22549717391 I found the same one a while back on amazon for $69 and it has aluminum poles and packs down to 14".
    #68
  9. Bad Dad

    Bad Dad Adventurer

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    Tent on the right, Marmot 2 man, double vestibule, double door. $105 on an email deal from sierratradingpost.com . Fast setup, small pack size, I think the poles fold to 15 inch. small enough to pack in my Ventura bag. Spent several hours in an absolutely scary thunderstorm this spring and got some water inside through the screen body from splashing in the puddles and bouncing back up under the fly. 4 yr's old and going strong, Buddy with $40 colemans.......not so successful.

    [​IMG]
    #69
  10. duck

    duck Banned

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    Your tent snob fu is weak. You should only use TITANIUM tent stakes.:evil
    #70
  11. Jeff B

    Jeff B Socially Awkward

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    It's true. Once a shelter get's to small there's a lot of surplus room inside. But there is a little, and you can supplement by putting your gear in a large dry bag just outside the zipper w/in arms reach. I have one like this, but a large garbage bag would suffice.

    [​IMG]

    When packing light I have two different bivy bags that I use depending on weather and w/the dry bag combo I do OK. It's a compromise.

    I'm not say'n this is the most comfortable way to bivouac, I'm just say'n that it's not as bad as some would think.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]

    I have a UL one person tent close to the size of that LL Bean above. The rain fly usually creates two small vestibules on each side.
    #71
  12. mpatch

    mpatch Long timer

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    biggest problem with small tents is if you have to hole up for a day or two because of weather or a breakdown
    #72
  13. Ceri JC

    Ceri JC UK GSer

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    Yes, that's what I do when I use my Nemo GoGo. Since I switched to Kriega soft luggage (at least, for the short, "lightweight at all costs" sort of trips where I use a bivvy), I haven't even needed to carry separate dry bags to do this; I put kit back into the bags and leave it just outside my tent.

    As Jeff says, it's far from the most comfortable/convenient way of camping. It's just that it's not quite as "leave that to the hardcore" as people might imagine.
    #73
  14. SgtDuster

    SgtDuster Long timer

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    Maybe because this guy puts more emphasis on comfort? To each his own I guess.

    You see? Someone could argue that you don't need a full cookset when you're camping and ask you "why?"

    To each his own gain.
    #74
  15. VStromTom

    VStromTom Long timer

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    Well, yes but 4# is less than 14#, ergo far superior!:wink:Plus then you can carry 10# of something else, which again is superior. Funny! Just like the shot a few ago about $40 Colemans. FWIW, my $30 Coleman has never leaked a drop nor had some backsplash water inflitration because the tub doesn't go up far enough on the sidewall mesh.
    #75
  16. achtung3

    achtung3 Long timer

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    When I was shopping for a tent I gave in and paid more than I wanted, after using it thru pouring rain I was glad with the money spent on the tent
    Woke up one morning 3AM with rain beating on the tent roof and water running under the tent, no leaks whatsoever, it rained like a river and I was in my tent dry, it was worth every penny. REI camp dome 2.:D

    I learned thru the years that (you get for what you pay for) IS TRUE.:eek1
    #76
  17. mario33

    mario33 Howling around...

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    Well, been searchin for perfect tent for years but No luck so far.

    Here are my requirements:
    - 3 seasons tent;
    - 3 persons ~ 2+gear;
    - dome for good windprofeness;
    - minimum 48 inches inside height, ideally 50, dont like cramped spaces, i need to at least sit straight inside;
    - aluminium poles with ~15inches segment length to fit most panniers;
    - max 9 lbs with footprint, ideally 7.

    Any matches ?
    #77
  18. Downs

    Downs KK6RBI

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    REI and Campmor have pretty good search engines to find that kind of stuff.

    Edited to add pics. You can look those up to see if they meet your height requirement. They seem to meet your other ones but the drop down search thing doesn have an option to sort by height.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    Sent from my iPhone
    #78
  19. Casejeep

    Casejeep Been here awhile

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    In short, you do get for what you pay for. It is no fun waking up in a puddle of water. I have seen even moderatly priced tents tear apart in a gnarly wind storm.

    3 season tent= summer fall spring ( winter too but no snow) it will have lots of mesh and somewhat good venting.
    4 season tent= winter snow and fall. Can withstand many feet of snow on top of it. Winds up to 70mph ( think Mt Everest) and will cost at least 2X that of a high quality 3 season tent

    1person tent= just you, nothing else.
    2person tent= you want gear, or 2 people who don't mind cuddling
    3 person tent= 2 people plus gear


    If you will be camping in the desert, try and find a tent with minimal mesh that won't zip up, blowing sand comes right on it though the mesh. I woke up in Death Valley with sand in my mouth and eyes.

    I myself don't like to use stakes because you can only use them effectivly in a few kinds of places. The sand can't be to soft or to hard, ground has to be almost perfect in order for stakes to work right. I tie about 24" of cord on each tie down of the tent, this lets me tie the tent to anything. The bike, rocks, trees, bushes, logs, small animals. But with that being said I carry 4 stakes that came with the tent with me, just in case I run into the perfect ground.

    The only thing I use the vestibule for is boots, anything else left out there will get muddy if it rains or filled with sand if its windy.

    Another thing that I don't understand is the "motorcycle" tent with the little covered parking spot. These bikes are built to drive down the freeway in all kinds of weather going 65mph, why are people scared to leave them out over night?


    Now DISCUSS
    #79
  20. some call me...tim

    some call me...tim Been here awhile

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    I can throw in my anecdote for opting for a better-than-average tent. I went on a trip years ago where several of us were camped out at a campground. I had a "good" tent, a Sierra Designs one that would be considered low end by gear snobs, but would be considered high end from Walmart shoppers, so I guess it was middle of the road in the scheme of things. Another guy had some sort of Walmart special like a Coleman or a Wenzel. As luck would have it, a huge storm came in during the night, lots of wind and rain. It was causing all sorts of commotion with my rain fly, but everything stayed in place and dry. At one point during the night, I heard what sounded like a car accident, if cars were made out of nylon, accompanied by some colorful language. I shouted out to see if the guy was OK, and he said he was, so I went back to sleep.

    The next morning, the storm had passed and I did a check around my tent, and everything looked in place and dry. I went outside to see what the noise was last night, and the first thing I noticed was the guy's rain fly hanging about 10 feet up in a tree 75 yards away. His tent was some jumble of nylon and aluminum on the ground, that looked more like a pile of laundry than a shelter. We surmised that the rain fly, which was "arched" like one of these, had actually worked as a scoop, which caught a blast of wind, flipped his tent completely upside down, and ripped the fly off. The guy, along with his cooler full of ice, beer and food, were all inside and he just said "fuck it" and dealt with spending the rest of the night soaked by rain and ice water.

    I had that Sierra Designs tent for 15 years or so, and it always kept me dry, even when I pitched it in a bad spot where water pooled underneath it. I only recently replaced it because it was aging in places, like one of the zippers stopped working. That's not to say that an inexpensive tent won't work well, as I've seen some cheaper Eurekas and Keltys that are perfectly adequate for under $100, you just need to pay attention to the design of the tent and make sure it'll hold up in all conditions.

    In addition to the places listed for good deals, keep an eye on steepandcheap.com as good deals can be had on there. I picked up a nice Mountain Hardware 3 person tent for ~$130 last year, and its been superb so far.
    #80