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  1. #1
    New Member nosckaj123's Avatar
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    Is Cuben Fiber Considered the Best Tarp Material?

    I'm always looking around at hammock tarps online and it doesn't seem like there are many disadvantages to Cuben Fiber (besides that it's expensive). All costs aside, does Cuben Fiber have all the best qualities in a tarp, as compared to other materials, or does it have its own set of pros and cons?

  2. #2

    Join Date
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    What do you value? Lightweight? --it most definitely wins there. Durability? --not so much.

  3. #3
    boulderv7's Avatar
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    Jun 2013
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    Yeah, I don't own a CF tarp, but I've heard of acorns falling out of trees and puncturing them. They don't stretch at all, so that could be a pro or a con depending on your view point. They are easy to repair, some cuben tape will fix it up in no time. I've also heard they are prone to UV damage, but what isn't? They are ultralight....
    My head is an animal

  4. #4
    Funny Money's Avatar
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    Dec 2006
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    Aside from abrasion, a well-constructed tarp will last a long time. I disagree with that part of the above post.

    Sil may be more durable, but with proper care, cuben has made it through many a thru-hike.
    -- Funny Money
    ------------------
    Love 'em while you got 'em

  5. #5
    Herder of Cats OutandBack's Avatar
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    No need to put up a cuben fiber if you want shade. Bring some earplugs if it starts raining.
    I guess you can tell I don't like them and yes I own one.

    O&B
    May your mileage in the backcountry exceed your post count.

  6. #6
    UncleMJM's Avatar
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    Oct 2006
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    I have both sil tarps and a cuben tarp. I like them both for different uses. The cuben is my go to for lightweight backpacking. If I want sun protection or on full moons when I want to sleep in a darkened hammock I go with the sil.

  7. #7
    Senior Member nuttysquirrel's Avatar
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    Not really. If weight isn't an issue sil or pu coated is far superior IMO.

  8. #8
    dman's Avatar
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    Oct 2011
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    I love cuben, I may never go back to sil. Maybe that's why I have five of them now! Mwaahahaha!

  9. #9
    Grapenut's Avatar
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    May 2012
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    Rocket City, AL
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    No issue with durability I am aware of. And yes, it is uber light. When I want shade I take my camo model. Also, I can snore louder than any rain shower so sleeping in the rain isn't an issue for me (by the way, rain has more noise associated with it than just rain drops hitting your tarp). If you can afford it and you want to shave weight for hiking then the benefits far outweigh any detractors. If you are a car camper then save your money and go with one of the other excellent choices available. I just ordered a third (asym) one from HG because I like cuben so much. In summary, I've been using cuben tarps for years and there is no way I'd buy three if they weren't everything I expect them to be. Cuben rocks!
    Do more with less...and repeat...or, get "Roched" on every piece of cool, lightweight gear you see and end up being a gear junky like me!!

  10. #10
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    An acorn puncturing them? My HG Winter Palace has been through dime-sized hail with no issues. My favorite thing about cuben fiber tarps:

    1. Weight - nothing else comes close.
    2. No stretch - one of the major drawbacks of silnylon. Cuben fiber never sags or stretches. I hate sag and stretch.
    3. Field repairable - I've never had to, but I've seen some CF tarps with repairs that are barely noticeable with CF tape.
    4. Durability - I consider cuben fiber to be very durable.
    5. Did I mention weight?
    “The way to see by Faith is to shut the eye of Reason.” - Benjamin Franklin

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