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  1. #1
    Senior Member GrizzlyAdams's Avatar
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    Apr 2007
    GrizzBridge Ariel
    HG Cuben Winter
    DIY UQ

    return of the tarp beak

    My first version of the tarp beak emulated a known working solution---a poncho drapped over the end of the tarp.

    As was evident from the pictures, that beak used a lot of fabric over the tarp that wasn't needed for rain cover or wind break. Clearly what was wanted was a version that overlapped some with the edge of the tarp, but only minimally. Would be nice to have a design that was easily adaptable to different hex tarps as well.

    This brings us to Beak version 2, a.k.a. Son of Beak (SoB).

    In addition to a much sharper cut than Beak v1 on the side, SoB skips the velcro tabs on the doors in favor of the overlapping doors seen on a number of other rigs on HF. It gets the power to seal up gaps between beak and tarp along the edge by the use of an additional pair of stakes, to secure the beak corners independently of the tarp. In fact, the key to the seal is to bring those stakes a little inside the tarp, to create pull up against the tarp edge. It does not need or use the shock-cord that pulled the back-end of Beak v1 to the other end of the tarp.

    SoB is a lot wider at the base than Beak v1. I decided to try using the whole width of a roll of silnylon---64". My main reason was to cut down on the time required to build this thing, but had the added benefit that this width made it possible to pull the corners as far back as they do, and still have a bit of a vestibule. If the edge of your sil roll is square, you can cut SoB with two cuts : one that is 52" down from the edge, and goes all the way across the roll, and a diagonal cut, as shown below.

    It is then a matter of hemming all the edges. In the beak shown in the photos I then also doubled the hem back on all threes sides of a piece other than the diagonal, to create channels through which cord can go. I'm going to be toying with this to see if there is some 2nd use for it, and cord channels just seemed to offer some opportunities for that. We'll see.

    As with Beak v1, the two pieces are joined at the narrow edge. Here is where a minor bit of mathomagic is a bit helpful. We ideally want the edges to come together and lay flat on the top of the tarp. But we have already chosen an angle for the beak edge that lies along the edge of the tarp when we cut it----that is, we choose that angle if we insist now on adjoining the narrow edges straight along their cuts. Natch. Suffice to say that by measuring the tarp you can determine what angle the edge of the hex cut has relative to the ridgeline, and then can adjoin the two pieces at the narrow edge so that the edge of the diagonal is the desired angle with respect to the line formed where we adjorn the two pieces. They'll lay flat. I frankly don't know how much of an issue this part is, but since I could see my way clear to doing so as to make the angles work out, naturally I did.

    OK so that last paragraph sounds like the math gobblygook I occasionally spout. For the practical among us, it means for the MacCat Deluxe the top pieces ought to be joined along a line that forms a 10 degree angle, as shown below.

    I sewed in velco to make the join, having some hope of finding a use for one of those pieces, or the pair of them joined somehow.

    Tabs at the four bottom corners, one tab at the top to afix the beak to the tarp, see below. (You can also see how the join between the two pieces is angled)

    4.75 oz. Probably get it closer to 4 if no velcro was involved, lighter still if small bits of cord were used for pull-outs rather than grosgrain.

    I've given the go-ahead to 2Q and ZQ to market a beak based on my designs. Given that ZQ is a pro, and the design is simple, I'd expect they could crank these out quickly and hence at a reasonable price. That's for them to say, of course.

    Last edited by GrizzlyAdams; 11-08-2009 at 07:09.

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