MC Tents, why so much $$

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

  1. Stan_R80/7

    Stan_R80/7 Beastly Gnarly

    Joined:
    May 12, 2012
    Oddometer:
    1,684
    Location:
    VA
    As a personal opinion (I don't own one), the Eureka Timerline tents have impressed me as a reasonably priced good quality tent that can withstand a lot of use. http://store.eurekatent.com/timberline-series I have seen the Timberline model used by Plenty of BSA troops and youth groups and they hold up to that abuse very well. The tent is a compromise between cost, weight, features, and durability and comes with a limited lifetime warranty. You can't put a motorcycle inside the tent, but an optional vestibule is available for most other gear.
    #81
  2. lbever

    lbever IAMX454

    Joined:
    Dec 25, 2003
    Oddometer:
    62
    Location:
    Clive, IA
    A Big Agnes Wyoming Trail SL2 looks like it has all the features you are looking for except the pole length which is 24". I lucked out and found a sample unit on their website for $299.00. the only thing I could find wrong was the color coded tent pole webbing was sewn in the wrong place. I had been looking at the Redverz Series II Expedition tent but did not like the fact it was not free standing. After setting up the Wyoming trail SL2, I think it is going to be just what I wanted. The vestibule is huge.:clap and it is a free standing tent.
    Here is the link on the Big Agnes site
    #82
  3. Snarky

    Snarky Vodka Infused.

    Joined:
    Feb 24, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,342
    Location:
    Old El Paso and Swamp Houston
    As a rule I pretty much automatically assume that non-clothing gear that is labeled "motorcycle" or "motorcycling" is at best: overpriced, and at worst: a rubbish ripoff.

    There are of course exceptions, but it works pretty well. The prime example is "motorcycle air compressors" which are the same cheap rubbish they sell at wal-mart, in different packaging, and more expensive. Silly stuff like that.

    Oh, this trend generally holds up for other activities too. Look at 'backpacking' or 'lightweight' things. Somethings are truely useful AND lightweight, but generally things labeled as such are worthless baubles that you didn't need and marketed towards sheeple, and the only thing that is lightened are their wallets.
    #83
  4. augerdin

    augerdin I do my own crashing

    Joined:
    Aug 7, 2010
    Oddometer:
    95
    Location:
    the flat sandy part of Florida-you know the place.
    I have camped using some pretty cheap crap. Riding thru the west with my old K75 I used a poly tarp folded length-wise and duct taped the edges to make a weather proof shelter bag. No tent, no sleeping bag, no blanket, no ground pad. I used it sleeping out in a storm on the navajo res watching the lightening over shiprock. Was it comfortable? No. But I was younger (in my 40's) and just glad to be out. I did a 5 day hike down the Buckskin canyon to the Pariah and down to the Colorado with a group of friends. I bought a cheap walmart tent for 15 bucks and used that. It was lighter and easier to set up than the more expensive tents that others brought. The difference was that at the end of the 5 day hike my tent was about shot and theirs were still like new. My tent probably would have lasted another 4 or 5 set-ups. Maybe. I couldnt afford anything good and made do and I was glad I did. That hike was so worth it. Would I have been more comfortable and better prepared with higher quality gear? Yes. In my opinion ( and that aint worth much) buy the best gear your budget will allow for and still be able to make the trip. But dont let not having the "proper" gear stop you. Take the trip. Dont live a life of regrets. However, quality is worth it. Its better to have less and it be quality than a load of crap.
    #84
  5. PeterW

    PeterW Long timer

    Joined:
    Nov 11, 2005
    Oddometer:
    2,824
    Location:
    Gold Coast
    :)

    And since I only go camping a few days a year, and can always bail a stay in a motel if it gets too rough - "me too"

    I'd have to say though, budget tents have never actually failed on me, so I've never got to actually test plan-B. Thrown one away because it had a big spray of vomit on it yes, but actually failed no.

    Pete
    #85
  6. Law Dawg (ret)

    Law Dawg (ret) Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 10, 2003
    Oddometer:
    820
    Location:
    Left Coast
    :clap

    There is no such a thing as a "motorcycle tent" unless you include those tiny tent trailers designed to work only behind a bike. There are tents that have pole systems that fit your desired packing system and ones that weigh what you are willing to lug around on your bike. Even ridiculous (IMO) tents with built in garages that might work for the bike. Stuff that works for you and your bike and stuff that does not.

    The older I get the more I find that a lighter bike is wanted and so backpacking gear is the direction. Then I find that, like lightweight backpackers, I must decide what is worth splurging on and what is not...my priorities tend to lean toward comfortable sleeping and good food. I will spend and do what it takes to make that work and still keep things as light as possible. Sleeping comfort means being warm and dry (off the ground for this rider...hammock camper). I say don't scrimp on your insulation and weather protection but shop well as the most expensive is not always the best choice. Snarky gots it right...the label means nothing caveat emptor. :deal
    #86
  7. Krazyjohnny

    Krazyjohnny Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2011
    Oddometer:
    458
    Location:
    McKinney, TX
    I have recently fallen in love with the whole tent/hammock setup. I have never slept better camping than I have in the hammock. There are several out there to choose from. I chose the Hennesy Hammock with the hex rainfly. When it is cold out (below 35 degrees F) you need have some sort of insulation between your sleeping bag and the air below you. These things pack down small and are really comfy.

    I would also give a thumbs up to the Eureka Timberline stuff for bang for your buck. I have an assortment of tents from the years of camping.
    #87
  8. ohgood

    ohgood Long timer

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2010
    Oddometer:
    3,309
    Location:
    alabama
    That tent deserves a thread all its own, and quite a few pictures. Please pm if/when you decide to do it. Coolness !
    #88
  9. mario33

    mario33 Howling around...

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2007
    Oddometer:
    145
    Location:
    Warsaw, Poland
    Unfortunately, none of them is perfect to my requirements. Msr HB is closest, together with Salewa Denali iii and Vaude mark 3. I'm gonić to get custom alu poles and choose one of the 3.
    #89
  10. sleazy rider

    sleazy rider Squidly Adventurer

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2007
    Oddometer:
    1,987
    Location:
    On the bench
    I have the precursor to the Alps Mountaneering Chaos 3 tent and it's all that. Picked up last spring off Amazon for $110, it's spent five weeks on the road this past summer and survived some serious weather. It fits quite well in one Givi E35 with the tent body, poles, Aline Butterfly chair and 60* sleeping bag. Room to spare too. It's been from Michigan to Louisiana to Spearfish to Cape Breton and back.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
    #90
  11. BigDoc

    BigDoc Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 26, 2011
    Oddometer:
    318
    Location:
    Leland, NC
    From what I have seen, most of you could stoip eating for a day and lose that ten pounds; thne you could carry a 14 lb. tent like mine...
    #91
  12. seniorasi

    seniorasi Banned

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2009
    Oddometer:
    816
    Location:
    Edge of the light
    The "garage" is perfect for me. My skin is about as white as it gets. Due to multiple skin cancers the need to remain clear of UV radiation is imperative. I can set up and enjoy the great outdoors in my own camp kitchen, lounge, shop, bar, shaded porch, etc. I'm still looking for the elusive pre-owned moto tent in excellent to un-used condition for oh, say half price. I the "deal" doesn't present its self prior to next camping season, I guess I'll have to "spring" for a new one. YMMV
    #92
  13. Ceri JC

    Ceri JC UK GSer

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,462
    Location:
    All over, usually Wales or England
    Ha ha, I was talking with a mate about this when we were out walking yesterday. I am 6'2" and he is a shade over 6'7". Neither of us is what you'd call morbidly obese, but neither could be classed as "underweight" either.
    :D

    We were talking about going really ultralight and the massive spike in cost you get to shed the last few grammes of weight on gear, without sacrificing comfort/durability. We agreed that we could both, if we really wanted, easily shed 10kg (20 pounds) without being dangerously undernourished and then carry whatever the hell we wanted. There's also the fact that as I'm reasonably large/strong, when I'm hiking carrying a 15KG pack, rather than a 12KG one, is no great hardship for me. Similarly, my F800GS doesn't complain about the extra weight when I'm on the bike.

    I primarily focus on packing small, rather than just light. A weight carried close to the COG (either on your back or on the back of the bike) feels much lighter than the same weight in a bulky package three times the size. Your agility/handling takes a real hit with larger (sized) loads. Stuff sacks are your friends and ensuring that there is no "Dead Space"* in your luggage helps keep things manageable.

    *For example, don't have your saucepan/cooking pot combo 'hollow' and full of air; make use of that space by putting your firelighting kit, head torch, spare t-shirt etc. in there to fill up the space.
    #93
  14. AtlasExp

    AtlasExp beer me

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2010
    Oddometer:
    444
    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    #94
  15. steelerider

    steelerider Southafricanamerican

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2011
    Oddometer:
    962
    Location:
    Lancaster, PA.
    Here's my experience with cheap gear, including a "suisse sport" 20 Deg sleeping bag, and a wally world, Coleman tent.
    2 Years ago I went on a weeklong ride with my brother thru CA. He is of the opinion that if you are going to buy something to use, you should always "invest" in the most expensive you can afford. In the long run, if you buy cheap, you will end up replacing it - (yes, one of those guys) I used to be of the opposite train of thought: Read - Cheapass.
    We both needed camping gear, so before the trip he bought a $200 Alps tent, a good down sleeping bag and an expensive sleeping pad. I stocked up with the usual cheap crap at Walmart. I shook my head while we were setting up camp the first night quietly balking to myself as he set up all his "camping snob gear" That night I froze my ass off, and woke up with my hips aching from the cheap pad. He slept like a baby. The next night, it rained. I then froze my ass off again, woke up even more sore and wet as well. He, slept like a baby. Warm. Comfy Dry.
    We stopped at REI in Reno the third day. I walked out with a new down sleeping bag, a quality inflatable pad and a new Big Agnes tent. That night, I slept like a baby. Warm. Comfy. Dry.
    Lesson learned. Buy the best stuff you can comfortably afford. Tents included.
    #95
  16. alfabc

    alfabc Adventurer

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2009
    Oddometer:
    217
    Location:
    Vancouver Washington
    I've had great luck with a Kelty Grand Mesa 2 person tent I picked up at Next Adventure in Portland OR. They sell last years models usually, and I think mine was actually two years old, new stock variety. It was on sale for about $100 and is a three season tent. Doesn't leak, vents well with no condensation build up inside, packs small, and the poles break down so that they fit in my panniers. I actually used the pannier dimensions when shopping for the tent. If the poles wouldn't fit, I looked at other models. I also bought my sleeping bag, camp stove, mess kit, camp chair, water purification kit, and various other items at Next Adventure (http://nextadventure.net/) Great staff and very helpful. If you don't live in the area, their website lists just about everything they have in store. Really happy with all the gear I've purchased so far.

    Cheers,

    Bill
    #96
  17. Tim the Enchanter

    Tim the Enchanter Adventurer

    Joined:
    Oct 22, 2011
    Oddometer:
    30
    Location:
    Midwest Flatlander
    Here is a pic of my $40.00 Coleman. It's about 15 years old. I replaced one of the poles on it, but other than that, it's been great!
    [​IMG]

    And by the way, it was 24 degrees that night!
    [​IMG]
    #97
  18. Dangeross

    Dangeross Space cowboy!

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2010
    Oddometer:
    124
    Location:
    The land of brats & cheese
    I too saw this tent and will consider this when looking for my next tent. :evil
    My current tent I purchased from REI in the close out sale section. Used it this summer and I am happy with it.

    A Big Agnes Wyoming Trail SL2 looks like it has all the features you are looking for except the pole length which is 24". I lucked out and found a sample unit on their website for $299.00. the only thing I could find wrong was the color coded tent pole webbing was sewn in the wrong place. I had been looking at the Redverz Series II Expedition tent but did not like the fact it was not free standing. After setting up the Wyoming trail SL2, I think it is going to be just what I wanted. The vestibule is huge.:clap and it is a free standing tent.
    Here is the link on the Big Agnes site[/QUOTE]
    #98
  19. jon_l

    jon_l Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 8, 2008
    Oddometer:
    3,687
    Location:
    Collingwood, Ontario
    I have no experience with cheapo tents, but I own 4 tents now, all good or at least decent brands:

    Tent #1 - 2-man Eureka Alpine Meadows (A-frame with vestibule) was a hand-me-down from brother-in-law, when he decided he needed more room, so he bought a 6-man tent. Rec'd it used 20 years ago, still works perfectly, except Eureka re-strung the elastic cords in the poles under (lifetime) warranty.

    Tent #2 - 6-man Sierra Designs dome was a hand-me-down from brother-in-law when he decided he didn't want to camp anymore. Was useful when my boys were young and felt safer inside a tent with mom and dad. Rec'd used 15 years ago, still worked perfectly last time I set it up, which was ~10 years ago. Would be 1st choice for car camping, but I haven't done any car camping for a long time.

    Tent #3 - Marmot Swallow 2-man convertible (mesh zips-closed, rated for 4 season use) tent, bought 10 years ago for canoe-camping, for mom and dad once kids wanted their own space.

    Tent #4 - Alps Mountaineering Mountaineering Mystique 2.0 Tent: 2-Person 3-Season bought in November, as I was wanting a lighter-weight and shorter-pole tent for camping on the 250. Weighs 4 lbs less than the Marmot, and the poles are shorter. This is a 2-man tent intended for 1-person with room inside for some gear. Got it from Steep and Cheap for $70 + $7 shipping (Retail is $219). Haven't set it up yet. Hopefully it is a decent tent, but if not, I'll be able to sell it on Craigslist for more than I paid.

    Since decent quality tents, if well-cared-for, seem to last virtually forever, I'll stick with quality, since my tents seem to last (most of) a lifetime. I am careful to put all my gear away dry and clean.

    I still have my first 2 Thermarest pads bought from LL Bean in 1990, and my sleeping bags are 35 and 20 years old, both (as far as I can tell) as good as new. I also have 2 newer Thermarests that are 4" narrower and 1/2" thinner, for when space is at a premium.
    #99
  20. Ceri JC

    Ceri JC UK GSer

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2009
    Oddometer:
    2,462
    Location:
    All over, usually Wales or England
    My most regular riding buddy uses a Coleman of similar vintage. It was a hand me down from his Dad, whereas he has spent plenty of money on a modern sleeping bag, pad, stove, etc. the tent is one thing he has never felt the need to replace. It doesn't leak, is just large enough to get changed in and store all his kit it, it packs small and as light as the modern stuff. Why replace it?