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View Full Version : post production care and modifications to tent/quilt



corialice81
01-16-2019, 12:56
Back story: I purchased both my tent and quilt in 2014 and since they have been lightly used. When I say lightly I truly mean lightly. The tent has seen 3 nights and the quilt has seen 6 days to date. I'm ashamed to admit that this gear has spent the bulk of time in a sealed storage container. I recently retrieved them from storage. I forgot that I did not get a door when I originally ordered my tent. I also noticed that my quilt was releasing feathers. I contacted the sellers of both pieces of gear to see if I could pay for some TLC. I asked to have my tent modified to have a door added. In their reply, they said no with the reasoning that "our production model does not allow for customization. We have enterprise resource management software that automates everything now." I also asked to have my quilt re-stuffed. In their reply, they said no with the reasoning that my request would result in "havoc on production". This post is not a bashing of the companies whatsoever! I love my gear and strongly feel that they produce solid products. I shared that information with you so that what I'm about to type will make more sense.

Point of Post: Can I add a door to the tent myself or do you know someone that can? I don't want to buy a new tent since there is nothing wrong with the tent I have. Also, is there a company you are aware of that would be willing to re-stuff a down quilt? Also, I'm not interested in a new piece of gear. I feel like I've hit road blocks in both areas and have come here seeking help with other options.

I look forward to your responses.

Puddlefish
01-16-2019, 13:36
It would probably help of you told us what specific model of tent you own, and what's wrong it's function that's causing you not to use it. Adding a "door" kind of has me baffled. Do you have one of those giant canvas glamping tents? Some kind of little nylon backpacking tent? What's wrong with the current access/entry into the tent that you'd need another?

As for adding down to a sleeping bag, that's already leaking down... If it's already leaking significant amounts of down, adding more would be pointless, as it will just leak out again. It would be incredibly time consuming and technically difficult to rip and re-seam the bag, or to cut holes into it, and then properly reseal them. Adding down without losing the existing down is also a fiddly process. I'd check to see if maybe the down has just clumped up, which might be leaving cold spots. Maybe a proper washing and drying might revive the bag?

corialice81
01-16-2019, 13:48
Right! I'm referring to the hexamid solo tent. Here is a picture of it's setup. As you can see there is a not a door that reaches all the way down to the floor. This, of course, would only be an issue if there is rain, heavy horizontal rain would be terribly difficult to keep the gear inside dry.
44502

corialice81
01-16-2019, 13:57
As for adding down to a sleeping bag, that's already leaking down... If it's already leaking significant amounts of down, adding more would be pointless, as it will just leak out again. It would be incredibly time consuming and technically difficult to rip and re-seam the bag, or to cut holes into it, and then properly reseal them. Adding down without losing the existing down is also a fiddly process. I'd check to see if maybe the down has just clumped up, which might be leaving cold spots. Maybe a proper washing and drying might revive the bag?


I guess my suggestion to refill comes from my experience with Western Mountaineering and their offer to overfill your bag. After the AT, I had my WM bag sent back to them (after washing it) to have it overfilled. It was no issue and continues to function just fine, without losing down. My quilt isn't losing down at an alarming rate to think there are tears. I am concerned about it's loss of down after only 6 days of use during 4 years of storage. When I pulled it out of the storage container, a handful of feathers went airborne. I'm probably not explaining this well. Are there companies out there that would be wiling to add down?

Puddlefish
01-16-2019, 14:55
The easy question first. The "overfill" option that some manufacturers like WM advertise isn't a refill, it's only a production option, not post production.

I found a set up video of a 2015 version of your tent (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nVOW7MUHVAs). Does the 2014 version really not have the little roll down flaps, or were they an option then? That would be unfortunate. The immediate solution is to pay a lot of attention to weather and wind conditions, setting the foot into the wind, and/or the predicted wind.

Beyond that, if you're handy, buy a cheap sewing machine and learn to sew really well, learning about how the specific materials stretch/bias/fraying. Practice a whole lot before attempting anything with your expensive tent, and expensive materials. There are a number of outdoor gear repair/alteration people who could do it, but that will cost you a good bit as it's not a simple alteration, and the materials aren't cheap. I'm sure people here will chime in with recommendations of people/companies they've used, or one's to avoid.

blw2
01-16-2019, 21:15
I think it's a shame that zpacks wouldn't do it. I think mostly its a don't want to kind of thing.... not really going to cause the earth to stop turning relative to their production...I mean really, they could pull one sewing person.... even one that's in training... just for a few minutes. They've got all the stuff on hand. Prob wouldn't take any time really....
but on the other hand, I get it. My company is kinda the same way. I personally hate it sometimes, but "We" want to make a big deal over some little things sometimes.

Regardless moving forward... and idea just for brainstorming purposes
how about getting some of those tape on toggle loop things z-packs sells?.... put a few loops along the edge of the tent under that overhang. Tehn get a piece of something...even if it's not the same stuff...nylon even... and sew it into the shape you want. Just a sheet like. Put the toggles on it, then when rain is predicted bring it along. Leave it at home when weather is good.

http://www.zpacks.com/accessories/tape.shtml

Dogwood
01-16-2019, 22:11
Bag refilled, "reworked", altered is easy. http://rainypass.com/sleeping-bags/ They've done work for me before. I feel confident in giving RainyPass two thumbs up as a satisfied customer. YOU have to work with them though communicating clearly your goals and expectations.

Dogwood
01-16-2019, 23:15
Right! I'm referring to the hexamid solo tent. Here is a picture of it's setup. As you can see there is a not a door that reaches all the way down to the floor. This, of course, would only be an issue if there is rain, heavy horizontal rain would be terribly difficult to keep the gear inside dry.
44502
There is a door on the Hexamid, a zippered screen door.

I had a ZP Hex. Horizontal rain was not an issue keeping gear dry inside away from the tarp perimeter. That's what the side beak and smaller footprint ZP add on bathtub floor were designed. Additionally, when it rains heavily and especially if it wind driven or a wind will likely present itself, the typical suggestion is to place the full rear back panel into the wind. There is also some slight adjustment ability in the ZP Hex in lowering the side walls during wind driven rain. This can slightly affect floor space. Lastly, and I don't see it being used in your Hex in Cali? set up, is adding a bathtub removable floor which was, I found, a useful add on with the Hex if wet conditions or wind driven sand were expected... and I still desired cross ventilation to reduce/avoid condensation. I also liked it was removable and I could do a different flat ground sheet when conditions were more in line to that approach. The sides of the "tub" helps prevent water from sheeting across a flat ground sheet and from ground splashes. A tub is more "idiot" proof. :) I don't know if still can get a Hex fitting ZP Bathtub removable floor as the Plex has replaced the Hex. I do see them offered up FS used on line occasionally. And the Plex has a sewn in floor. Notice the Plex has a "split door" to the ground. What that tells me is that others were having this splash issue. WHY? IMHO, it could be purchasers didn't understand the design and optimal usage...likely as they rah rated with others on the UL/SUL ZP Hexamid bandwagon...an issue many NB ULers make, ME TOO...underestimating UL design and functionality while overestimating or ignoring their/our own abilities. :D

Another possible approach, although not one I'm always keen about because it can decrease ventilation, is to cut to shape a slightly larger flat footprint than how you typically set the Hex up. You can let the flat sheet creep up around the perimeter to avoid splash and sheeting.

Yet another way to avoid splash and sheeting across your floor is to prop up the perimeter slightly. I typically utilize flat lying trekking poles, small rocks, appropriate length branches, etc under the perimeter of a flat ground sheet. Propping up one side of the flat floor can work if your site situated on a very slight slope anticipating downhill direction of heavy rain. You have to be mindful of not damaging the incorporated Nanaoseeum floor though! The incorporated nananseeum being damaged/torn and Hex too short length for my height and stretched out sleeping position were probably the two biggest reasons why I abandoned using the Hex. I don't care what anyone posts on their site or says. Using a nanonseeum next to the ground and ground cloth over it will reduce the life span of nanoseeum possibly resulting in functionality issues of the Hexamid shelter.

Here's another suggestion. You said you have very light use on your Hex. From your pic it does indeed seem to be in good condition. Resale value of ZP gear including the Hex still remains relatively high. THAT MAY NOT LAST INDEFINITELY! You could sell it in the good used condition at a good price and roll the do re mi into a ZP Plex. People are hungry for ZP gear! Here's why this can make sense. Even if you do find someone to retrofit your current Hex with a DCF door based on the financial costs you already have invested in the Hex PLUS the retrofit costs, which for DCF can be pricey post production and considering the original manufacturer will not to do the work, it can possibly entail a greater overall costs than a new Plexamid.:-?

Hope this helps providing options.

corialice81
01-17-2019, 01:10
Bag refilled, "reworked", altered is easy. http://rainypass.com/sleeping-bags/ They've done work for me before. I feel confident in giving RainyPass two thumbs up as a satisfied customer. YOU have to work with them though communicating clearly your goals and expectations.

This is exactly what I was looking for! THANK YOU! Iíll contact them tomorrow and make sure they know you referred me. [emoji109]


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corialice81
01-17-2019, 01:12
There is a door on the Hexamid, a zippered screen door.

I had a ZP Hex. Horizontal rain was not an issue keeping gear dry inside away from the tarp perimeter. That's what the side beak and smaller footprint ZP add on bathtub floor were designed. Additionally, when it rains heavily and especially if it wind driven or a wind will likely present itself, the typical suggestion is to place the full rear back panel into the wind. There is also some slight adjustment ability in the ZP Hex in lowering the side walls during wind driven rain. This can slightly affect floor space. Lastly, and I don't see it being used in your Hex in Cali? set up, is adding a bathtub removable floor which was, I found, a useful add on with the Hex if wet conditions or wind driven sand were expected... and I still desired cross ventilation to reduce/avoid condensation. I also liked it was removable and I could do a different flat ground sheet when conditions were more in line to that approach. The sides of the "tub" helps prevent water from sheeting across a flat ground sheet and from ground splashes. A tub is more "idiot" proof. :) I don't know if still can get a Hex fitting ZP Bathtub removable floor as the Plex has replaced the Hex. I do see them offered up FS used on line occasionally. And the Plex has a sewn in floor. Notice the Plex has a "split door" to the ground. What that tells me is that others were having this splash issue. WHY? IMHO, it could be purchasers didn't understand the design and optimal usage...likely as they rah rated with others on the UL/SUL ZP Hexamid bandwagon...an issue many NB ULers make, ME TOO...underestimating UL design and functionality while overestimating or ignoring their/our own abilities. :D

Another possible approach, although not one I'm always keen about because it can decrease ventilation, is to cut to shape a slightly larger flat footprint than how you typically set the Hex up. You can let the flat sheet creep up around the perimeter to avoid splash and sheeting.

Yet another way to avoid splash and sheeting across your floor is to prop up the perimeter slightly. I typically utilize flat lying trekking poles, small rocks, appropriate length branches, etc under the perimeter of a flat ground sheet. Propping up one side of the flat floor can work if your site situated on a very slight slope anticipating downhill direction of heavy rain. You have to be mindful of not damaging the incorporated Nanaoseeum floor though! The incorporated nananseeum being damaged/torn and Hex too short length for my height and stretched out sleeping position were probably the two biggest reasons why I abandoned using the Hex. I don't care what anyone posts on their site or says. Using a nanonseeum next to the ground and ground cloth over it will reduce the life span of nanoseeum possibly resulting in functionality issues of the Hexamid shelter.

Here's another suggestion. You said you have very light use on your Hex. From your pic it does indeed seem to be in good condition. Resale value of ZP gear including the Hex still remains relatively high. THAT MAY NOT LAST INDEFINITELY! You could sell it in the good used condition at a good price and roll the do re mi into a ZP Plex. People are hungry for ZP gear! Here's why this can make sense. Even if you do find someone to retrofit your current Hex with a DCF door based on the financial costs you already have invested in the Hex PLUS the retrofit costs, which for DCF can be pricey post production and considering the original manufacturer will not to do the work, it can possibly entail a greater overall costs than a new Plexamid.:-?

Hope this helps providing options.

Umm... holy cow! This is above and beyond helping! I tried to send you a PM, but it said your mailbox is full.


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Dogwood
01-17-2019, 14:18
My failures and how I learned to remedy them are your gain. ;)

The Cleaner
01-17-2019, 14:35
FWIW, I contacted Tarptent with a request for some material and a new logo patch to cover critter damage. Henry Shires answered the phone and promptly sent @ no charge the items I requested. #1 for customer service at Tarptent.

Lynnette
01-17-2019, 15:42
Since getting a door already made is not an option. One does not sew on cuben fiber. It is stuck together with some kind of magic cuben fiber tenacity type tape.$$$ Peel off velcro does not even stick with out the special fiber tape. My husband bought a beak for his and it is not enough in a nasty storm. Bear Paw might be able to help you. Otherwise order your light weight cuben, your tape and probly some sticky back velcro and remember your geometry. Your piece looks like a rectangle, then trim the stuff hanging on the ground for the triangle piece on the side. Maybe design in a glow in the dark string tabby or two to hold it down. For the Cuben Fiber, also known as Dyneema Composite Fabric (DCF) itself, you probly dont need the heavy dutiest kind maybe .3 size. Whatever is on sale would be nice. Good luck see you in the woods.

Dogwood
01-17-2019, 16:34
Assuming DCF DIY retrofit/build knowledge and the helpful tools already are possessed and assuming no mistakes are made in damaging the existing Hexamid effecting resale value and retrofit materials loss errors occur DCF .51 materials, tapes, hardware, etc to achieve a retrofit similar to the Plex from the Hex would roughly be 80+ or -. If Bear Paw would take it on for a 20-50% labor and materials market uptick I suggest considering having them or someone else take the retrofit on that has greater DCF abilities. Opinions vary but IMHO I wouldn't take this retrofit on as my first DCF DIY construction. It's not brain surgery by any means but those that do DCF well...do it well. If you already did some DCF stuff sacks or similar than I'd progress to DCF tarps, shelters, packs, apparel, etc. The $$$ costs learning curve can be steep with DCF construction errors particularly when it involves possibly risking an existing $400 piece of DCF gear.

Good luck. Happy trails.

Maineiac64
01-17-2019, 23:14
Yeah, selling it and getting a plex seems to make a lot of sense. I think I’m getting one.

lucky luke
01-18-2019, 00:27
FWIW, I contacted Tarptent with a request for some material and a new logo patch to cover critter damage. Henry Shires answered the phone and promptly sent @ no charge the items I requested. #1 for customer service at Tarptent.
same here. got more than enough moskitonetting for free after i wanted to buy some. #1 service at tarptent!

Dogwood
01-18-2019, 02:12
A DCF cottage manufacturer sending several yards(3 sq yds) of .51 DCF and 8--12 ft DCF tape as a freebie uhh isn't likely to happen. Some patches, seam tape, maybe some glue(Seam Grip, etc) and netting yeah maybe. With silny patches different story too. And yeah absolutely agree, Henry is top notch about taking care of others when approached kindly. I'll never forget the kindness Henry offered at a PCT Kick Off when on the first day at Lake Moreno a branch fell off a tree gashing a new GG Spinnaker tarp. Had heard Henry liked fruit. I had a mango to offer him in exchange for spinnaker patches and some adhesive dug out of his vehicle. He said with a smile I could have the repair materials for free but I insisted he take the mango. He thanked me me graciously. He graciously accepted and I graciously accepted his instructions and repair materials...not even to be used on one of his shelters. Even in the midst of being a busy vendor he helped me out. I'll never forget that act of kindness!

Dogwood
01-18-2019, 02:15
That's what the PCT Kick Off could be about. I truly wish ATers had something similar earlier on in their hikes possibly pre hike.

MuddyWaters
01-18-2019, 05:46
You complaining that a manufacturer wont modify 5 yr old gear for you. Its well known that they dont do custom work anymore. The ones outsourcing mfg to china dont either.

Sell it all. Problem solved.
Buy what you really want.

The original hexamid, without beak was designed and built around pct hiking. Where rain isnt much of an issue. You simply scooted to back wall. And pitched it correctly, which your pic isnt. Its ridiculous to contemplate using it where rain is abundant.

Its not hard to add down to a quilt. Shake down to opposite end, open seam 1.5" on a tube, pack down in 12" piece of 1" copper tubing from home depot. Put in seam opening and use 3/4" dowel or broomstick to push thru into quilt. Repeat. Sew up tube by hand. Done in a couple hrs .

Dogwood
01-18-2019, 11:31
"The original hexamid, without beak was designed and built around pct hiking. Where rain isnt much of an issue. You simply scooted to back wall. And pitched it correctly..."

I know folks dont take many pics of their gear being used in the rain but I mentally noted pretty much all the pics I've ever seen of the Hexamid were in dry weather or under light snow loads. It makes for a neat o' picture of one's coveted shelter.:)

corialice81
01-18-2019, 13:07
My original post was not a complaint and I have to admit Iíve been out of the hiking community for the last 5 years. The recent holidays brought hiking back to the forefront and an afternoon spent going through my gear bins.

I appreciate all the helpful as well as unhelpful responses to my original post. I have sent an inquiry to rainypass and am waiting for a response. As far as the hex...I bought it for my failed PCT in 2014... the photo I shared was it pitched on top of artificial turf in the backyard of a trail angel... not ideal. I really hope to get back out there and enjoy a successful thru soon.




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