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Old 06-06-2016   #21
 
cedar city, Utah
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Originally Posted by Electric-Mayhem View Post
I'm not necessarily bitching about it, but does anyone know what makes these so expensive? I've set several different ones up, and it always just seems like its just a large piece of fabric cut to shape.
A little more complicated than that. As a I understand it ripstop fabrics are traditionally manufactured in limited widths, I believe up to 60" (that is what you can get from Seattle Fabrics). So you would need 3-4 sections at 4 yards to get the dimensions the tarps have. That would come to about $102-136 just in the base fabric. Throw is means for bonding, waterproof seam tape and the extra material for edging and you are likely closer to $175 in materials. Throw in $20 for guyline and tensioning devices. By the time I get to that an extra $100 for a field-tested, bomber shelter seems appropriate to shell out.

I know plenty of people who make standard square sil-polyester tarps for hunting and backpacking. But getting a catenary cut is not simple and takes practice.

I think someone on the Buzz had a thread about making them though. He saved some $$ but not a ton if I remember correctly.

Phillip

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Old 06-07-2016   #22
 
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Lakewood, Colorado
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Quote:
Originally Posted by restrac2000 View Post
[


A little more complicated than that. As a I understand it ripstop fabrics are traditionally manufactured in limited widths, I believe up to 60" (that is what you can get from Seattle Fabrics). So you would need 3-4 sections at 4 yards to get the dimensions the tarps have. That would come to about $102-136 just in the base fabric. Throw is means for bonding, waterproof seam tape and the extra material for edging and you are likely closer to $175 in materials. Throw in $20 for guyline and tensioning devices. By the time I get to that an extra $100 for a field-tested, bomber shelter seems appropriate to shell out.

I know plenty of people who make standard square sil-polyester tarps for hunting and backpacking. But getting a catenary cut is not simple and takes practice.

I think someone on the Buzz had a thread about making them though. He saved some $$ but not a ton if I remember correctly.

Phillip
I get what you are saying, but those prices are for an average Joe that wants to buy the fabric and hardware, not a manufacturer. I'm sure MSR, Kelty, Big Agnes, etc buy large amounts of it and get a substantial discount over a one time small amount buyer would. If companies like Kelty and MSR were actually paying the costs you quoted, I don't think they'd be making money on it even at the price they charge now. Also, there are plenty of products out there made from ripstop that use the same amount of material that aren't as expensive. Your average tent uses about the same amount material, is more complicated to manufacture, seems to need constant redesign to limit stagnation, and many of them still manage to come in for cheaper then a lot of these wing/tarps do.

I also get that it takes some research and artisanship to create these, but the basic shape of the MSR wing(formerly Moss) has been around for a long time and while it doesn't take any less skill, modern manufacturing has become more precise and faster and the price of their Tarps has not changed to reflect that. Maybe it shouldn't since people still buy them at that price, but its still pretty baffling that they cost that much.

I guess I stick by the fact that I've seen more complicated designs of tents selling for far less then these. If its just about fabric width, go with a narrower fabric and add a seam or two.
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Old 06-07-2016   #23
 
Bend, Oregon
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I also run the 16ft Kelly noah. I usually use a small arborist throw bag / washer thu a tree ànd pull it over a highline. Whip a bite in the line and use a braided bungee to keep the tarp taunt across the line. This is easy when you have trees and a fair bit of paracord to work with. I think the noah tarps are fine for rain/ dew, but it seems hotter under them in the sun. If they had silver/reflective coating would make a world of difference. Ran the upper clackamas this weekend and could have rigged one over boat for the entire float.
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Old 06-07-2016   #24
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Bellevue, Idaho
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I have one of the Dragon Fly tarps and they are brilliant. I borrowed one with the idea that I could spend a couple hundred on materials and fake the rest as I am handy at sewing gear. Everything on it is so well made and designed I bought one and I am really happy with it. Two people can set one up in about five minutes if you lay out your straps and such. It doesn't need a high line or any other line just the six long straps on the corners and two oars. But I am looking for more than just shade on a hot day and we often have 15 to 20 peeps on our spring trips. I don't worry about wind gusts, super easy tensioning with the roller cams and it makes me happy. Not a shill I paid full price, but I do like this tarp.
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Old 06-07-2016   #25
 
Frisco, Colorado
Join Date: Dec 2010
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Anyone have any beta on either size of the "Big Duck"? I know they're pretty pricey so I'm wondering if they're really worth it.
Big Duck 1 Tarp, 15×15 | Cascade River Gear
Big Duck 2 Tarp, 20×20 | Cascade River Gear
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Old 06-07-2016   #26
 
East of the Pine beatle, Colorado
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We went with the Nemo- has drop down/roll up mesh walls for when the bugs are nasty. Only complaint is their zippers- a common Nemo flaw. They use too-small zippers on everything they make, it seems. Still a clever design and it should last a long time with a little care for those zippers.

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Old 06-07-2016   #27
 
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Sandy, Utah
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Lots of backpacker folks make their own tarps, but we're talking 12X9 size give or take. Ripstopbytheroll.com is a great source for silpoly fabric. The normal width is 58 inches, and they also carry XL silpoly in 66 inch width.

I have no time, space, or skill, so I buy tarps from folks who have all those things.
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Old 06-07-2016   #28
 
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salmon, Idaho
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I got the MSR and love it, I did make some minor modifications to it.. I attached 2 rings for oar handles at both ends of the ridge and double wrapped them in P-cord so that the handle fits in snug. I also attached 12' loop straps at all the connectors except one 15' at the one ridge pole.. goes up fast with 2 people, and is not too bad by yourself.. the cam straps make it really east to get everything tight.. I do need to get some tough stakes.. I tried to go cheap sand stakes and they are now garbage.. With the combination of two oars and the two poles that come with it you can make it a very usable space.
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Old 06-07-2016   #29
 
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Sandy, Utah
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I got some big plastic stakes called Rock Busters that have worked pretty well. I bought 8 and so far we've killed 1 of them over the course of 3-4 years. I think I ordered them through Cabelas. The dead one happened when someone tried to hammer one into what looked to be sand but was really slick rock.
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Old 06-07-2016   #30
 
north little rock, Arkansas
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I got some big plastic stakes called Rock Busters that have worked pretty well. I bought 8 and so far we've killed 1 of them over the course of 3-4 years. I think I ordered them through Cabelas. The dead one happened when someone tried to hammer one into what looked to be sand but was really slick rock.
So the Rock Busters hold pretty well on the sand beaches? I was considering ordering some of those SST Pins from Kifaru, but at around a buck a piece compared to $5 to $7 for the Kifaru stakes I'd much rather just add to my existing collection of Rock Busters if they'll do the job.
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