Anyone have any comments or experience using 'slight seconds' of 1.1oz ripstop listed on Outdoor Wilderness Fabrics? I plan on using them for a tarptent. Are the problems really only cosmetic? or am I, in my attempt to save a few bucks, setting myself up to have a failed shelter?
it's good stuff
i've bought at least 30 yards of 2nd-quality silnylon from Noah Lamport. some of it was 2nds because the bolt had been damaged near the selvage edge, but they just sent me a couple extra yards to make up for it. it has performed beautifully. all the other fabric that i bought sure looked fine, and performed just great. from a reputable seller like OWF, you shouldn't worry - the fabric will be fine.
One note that I came across that explained the high quality of "seconds" in silnylon is that a lot of this stuff starts out to be parachute fabric, and standards are so very high for that use that it doesn't take much to label it a second. I have purchased Silnylon "seconds" form three different sources and only once have I seen a flaw that I could identify as such (silicone treatment was a little heavy). It was easy to cut around and the performance for tarps etc. has been very reliable.
I too have made a tarptent using silnylon from OWF and have had no problems!
Meandering through Vermont, New Hampshire, + Maine
As others have mentioned, the 2nds quality Usually refers to discoloration, extra sil impreg, or extra pinholes around selvage edge, or other cosmetic stuff...most of the time this will not affect performance.
A few times I have heard of 2nds quality having too little silicone, and allowing heavy raindrops to force mist inside. I have not experienced this myself, but the common remedy was to simply purchase an aerosol can of waterproofing from Walmart. This is a silicon based waterproofer that is sold to Restore tent flys and such to a more watertight condition. If you have any worry about the silny you get, you can always spray on a bit of insurance in the back yard.
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