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  1. #1
    Registered User misprof's Avatar
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    Default Hail and Cuben Fiber

    I am wondering if anyone has any experience of using CF tarps or miss in a Hail? I hike primarily on the TA where Hail with high winds happen often enough to ask the question. My question is, Does it hold up or get shredded?

  2. #2
    Registered User egilbe's Avatar
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    Its used for sails in sailboats. Im sure it will hold up just fine.

  3. #3
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    I've had my zPacks Hexamid tent in hail and it has held up just fine.

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    Registered User Kaptainkriz's Avatar
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    I don't have any CTF3 tarps, but have sailed in hail/squall conditions and the stuff held up just fine. To the extent that a tarp floggs relative to what a sail does uncontrolled in high wind, you'll never shred it.
    keep your cigarette ashes away from it or the skipper will keel haul you.

    Quote Originally Posted by egilbe View Post
    Its used for sails in sailboats. Im sure it will hold up just fine.

  5. #5

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    Redbeard (Will Wood on YouTube) rode out a hail storm in his zpacks duplex tent. Ended up with a few holes in the tent he had to patch IIRC.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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    Ive had 1/4 " hail in hexamid, no problems and it came down heavy.

    Hail the size of oranges might not fare as well

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    There are many , and very different, versions of Cuben fiber , so as usual "it depends"

  8. #8
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    Just to make it a bit clearer, you could get totally conflicting but accurate reports.
    That is because (apart from the hail stone size...) they could all describe a different fabric.
    I can't tell you how far you can drive a Ford with 1 gallon of gas , particularly if I don't know what Ford you drive.

  9. #9
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    0.51 cuben

  10. #10
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    The 0.51 stuff is fragile. The 0.74 stuff is quite bomber. Doesn't sound like much of an increase but the strength difference is significant.

  11. #11
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    ^Yikes, that is discouraging if true. Was about to spend a bit on a 0.52/sq yd tarp. Where can one get 0.74?

    related thread:
    https://whiteblaze.net/forum/show...0-74)-is-ideal

    The general consensus in that thread seems to be 0.51 is okay, but I'd still probably consider 0.74. I've pushed the purchase off for a year or so anyway...
    Last edited by ChrisJackson; 12-21-2015 at 11:49.
    hikers gonna hike

  12. #12
    Registered User colorado_rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJackson View Post
    ^Yikes, that is discouraging if true. Was about to spend a bit on a 0.52/sq yd tarp. Where can one get 0.74?

    related thread:
    https://whiteblaze.net/forum/show...0-74)-is-ideal
    My 0.51 cuben doesn't seem to be fragile, my tent seems pretty darn strong, but "fragile" is subjective. I'm pretty sure Zpacks sells both, I remember having the option for the slightly heavier and more expensive 0.74 when I bought my 0.51.

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by GA_Windbreaker View Post
    Redbeard (Will Wood on YouTube) rode out a hail storm in his zpacks duplex tent. Ended up with a few holes in the tent he had to patch IIRC.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    It looked like he has more than a few. To be fair, that was a hell of a hail storm, though. I recall him using cuben tape to fix the holes.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by colorado_rob View Post
    My 0.51 cuben doesn't seem to be fragile, my tent seems pretty darn strong, but "fragile" is subjective. I'm pretty sure Zpacks sells both, I remember having the option for the slightly heavier and more expensive 0.74 when I bought my 0.51.
    They will make shelters in 0.74. I would personally order 0.51 again without hesitation.

  15. #15
    Registered User Mtsman's Avatar
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    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gfcuCh7h04

    that is a pretty good comparison between the two CF's and Sil Nylon. YMMV

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChrisJackson View Post
    ^Yikes, that is discouraging if true. Was about to spend a bit on a 0.52/sq yd tarp. Where can one get 0.74?

    related thread:
    https://whiteblaze.net/forum/show...0-74)-is-ideal

    The general consensus in that thread seems to be 0.51 is okay, but I'd still probably consider 0.74. I've pushed the purchase off for a year or so anyway...
    0.51 cuben is pretty fragile stuff. If it was 'bomber' then 0.74 would not be available from the same manufacturer. The lighter stuff is available because someone will buy it.

    Z Packs, Mountain Laurel Designs, Yama Mountain Gear, Hyperlite Mountain Gear all offer (or have as standard) the heavier cuben.

    Good luck.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mtsman View Post
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8gfcuCh7h04

    that is a pretty good comparison between the two CF's and Sil Nylon. YMMV
    It is? Did you know that most CF failures occur at the tie outs?

  18. #18

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    There are some hail storms that will break a cars windshields and dent the metal, so I suspect that any material can be destroyed by a strong enough hail storm. The proper question should be, can CF handle a typical hail storm that most people will likely see rather than look at the more extreme cases. Another thing to consider is the design of the shelter and whether it presents a flat surface to the downpour or is more angled. The more angled the sides and roof is, the less likely it will tear.

    That said, I still use a CF tarp bought early 2008 as my primary shelter. It uses the first generation .60 cuben fiber and has not had any issues with hail on the PCT or AT or numerous other hikes, mainly in the mountains out west. So I'm pretty confident with the material. As for the latest material weights, if I was just going to use the shelter for a thru-hike and not much else afterwards, then I'd go with the 0.51 stuff. If I was planning on using it as long as I have with my present tarp, I'd get the 0.74 stuff, which is what I'm going to do when I replace it next year.

  19. #19
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    Miner, are you replacing your tarp due to wear? If so, what areas are worn?

  20. #20

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    For a coupIe of years, its had a few pin holes; cause unknown. But they were too tiny to let water through. But this past year it finally wore a small hole through the fabric with some wear showing around it. Likely abrasion caused from the appearance. I could patch it with cuben tape as the whole worn area is about a penny size with the actual hole smaller. But the Tarp is almost 8 years old. The surface isn't as smooth as it use to be and I suspecting its holding more moisture when packing up wet than it did when it was smoother. I likely could make it work for awhile longer as I still stay dry under it. No problem with the tie outs and its been in some very strong winds (30-50mph gusts). But some tent designs have more stress on certain panel tie outs then a trap's along the edges. And MLD is good about reinforcing them.

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