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  1. #1

    Default Seam sealing question

    Relative newbie. I bought an REI tent about 7 years ago. Used it for about 2 years and then became a hammock camper
    It has been stored in a bedroom closet. I am going to use it in about 3 weeks above treeline so I gave it a test run while car camping. Before use, I looked at all of the factory taping and it looked good with no signs of cracking. The fly leaked/seaped. How often should the sealing be refreshed? Since the taping is in good shape should I seal over the tape? Is it best to seal on the inside or outside. I've read both ways recommended. Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Bad Ischl, Austria


    Just my personal experience:
    I've bought an MST Hubba Hubba NX a while back, and this year we (my wife and me) happened to get trapped two times in the tent in heavy thunderstorms, and the tent seemed to leak, drop after drop running down from the top of the rainfly.
    I couldn't bvelive that, as I had seam sealed the tent just the year before, in addition to the very good taping done by MSR.

    Back home, I investigated the "leak", and found that in fact it was condensation on the insied, that appeared exculsively during rain, forming drops running down the poles.
    So the tent was very OK, no actual leak.
    Might well be the same with your tent?

  3. #3


    I'm pretty sure it was rain seeping in
    I was looking at it with a flashlight. Appeared to be coming in the seams where the poles were touching. It was only 60F as well. Good question though. Thank you

  4. #4


    Personally, I'd seam seal the outside with a 50/50 mix of mineral spirits and 100% silicone caulk. Use a 1" foam brush to apply it after pitching your tent tightly. While you're at it, paint a few stripes across the floor to prevent your sleep pad from sliding when you're set up on a slight slope. After the seams and tripes dry, dust them lightly with baby powder to keep the canopy from sticking to them when rolled up.
    Go afield with a good attitude, with respect for the wildlife you hunt, and the forest and field in which you walk. Immerse yourself in the outdoor experience. It will cleanse your soul.--Fred Bear

  5. #5


    Thank you for your help

  6. #6


    Personally, I would buy a name brand seam sealer formulated for the type of fabric your fly is made of. I find that works a whole lot better then DIY sealer and is actually cheaper.

    Nylon tends to "bleed" at pressure points, so that can be one of the issues. In heavy rain it can mist through, then condense and drip. Unless it leaks enough to get the tent floor wet, I wouldn't worry much about it. Still, sealing the seams for good measure can't hurt.
    The AT - It has it's ups and downs...

  7. #7


    Thank you. It did appear to be seeping through the seams that the poles were pressing against. Fortunately, it wasn't that cold and surface tension/adhesion caused the majority of the water to drain down the underside of the fly.

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