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headchange4u
08-29-2006, 17:50
I see a lot of gear that has taped seams; my Gear Guide tarp, my Marmot tent, rain gear, etc... I bought a used/new Cloudburst 2 as it was only set up in a back yard once and hasn't even had the seams sealed yet.

I was going to do the normal seam sealing method of silicone reduced with mineral spirits and then brushed on the seams, but I thought it might be nice to tape the seams on the inside with seam tape. I checked Campmor and REI but neither one sells seam tape. I also did a search on "seam tape" in Google that brought up a whole plethora of sites but none were what I was looking for.

Are taped seams a factory thing or can you buy this stuff somewhere? Anyone ever tried taping the seams on something?

Here's a weird question: Anybody ever tried applying that standard mixture or silicone/mineral spirits with an airbrush (I'm sure it would have to be a thinner than normal mixture)? An airbrush seems it would help put on an even coat of seam sealer and the air pressure might also help get the sealer into all the nooks and crannies.

Smile
08-29-2006, 18:24
Not with an airbrush, but I didn't water the sealant down, and used a curved plastic syringe-type applicator I got from my dentist, it worked like a charm, then I did a slight finger smudge over the 'bead' of silicone. Waterproofed great and I was able to get it into all the nooks and crannies, and sewn edges with a very small amount of goo ;-)

Hope you find the tape you're looking for - if you do post how it did with some photos if possible!

RockyTrail
08-30-2006, 09:31
I would think carefully about making that silicone into an aerosol with the airbrush, unless you wear a forced air respirator it could get into your lungs easily (not a good thing).

I think the seam tapes are used for ease of assembly in a commercial production environment. If you are seam sealing by hand it's not necessary, it just adds weight.

headchange4u
08-30-2006, 10:22
I would think carefully about making that silicone into an aerosol with the airbrush, unless you wear a forced air respirator it could get into your lungs easily (not a good thing).

I think the seam tapes are used for ease of assembly in a commercial production environment. If you are seam sealing by hand it's not necessary, it just adds weight.

I would defiantly use a mask if I were to try spry-on seam sealer. I usually wear a mask when I use my airbrush with certain paints anyway.

So seam tape IS a factory thing? That's the conclusion I was beginning to come to. Even seam sealing in the normal way is going to add weight, but I really think I could live with the few grams of extra weight if it meant a more water tight shelter.

headchange4u
08-30-2006, 10:57
Here's a some interesting reading I found while looking into seam tape:
From:DIY - My Designs - Seam Sealing (http://www.bushwalking.org.au/FAQ/DIY_RNCSeams.htm)

The other method of sealing seams is to tape them. This has been used on parkas for a long time of course. You can get special GoreTex seam sealing tape, or a plain clear PU tape without backing. Both are normally applied with heat using an expensive machine, although you can use an ordinary iron with much care. What I have done with considerable success is to use an industrial double-sided or transfer tape, backed up with the same fabric as the tent. This will waterproof the seam of course, just as with a parka. However, by putting the tape across the seam it will also reinforce the seam. The adhesive will help transfer the tension from the fabric on one side across the stitching to the fabric on the other side without loading the thread. With the right tape you can have just a single line of stitching plus the tape. This appears to have the advantage that you do not have to leave the tent erected for a day for the seam sealer to cure, but life is not that simple.

I found the fact that seam tape may help to strengthen and reinforce the seam to be interesting. I had never thought about that aspect.

I did happen to find some seam tape on one site. It was 1.95 per yard and had to be put on with heat or an iron. There is no way I am getting a hot iron near my new Cloudburst-and the tape is black.