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Thread: Budget tarp.

  1. #21

    Join Date
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    Quote Originally Posted by tsshaw78 View Post
    Late to the conversation. As one already said, I'm starting off with budget gear so I can get out to the woods. I ended up finding Chill Gorilla and for the past year and a half I have had good luck with it provided I followed the vendors recommendation to seam seal the ridgeline. Before I seam sealed, I did notice a little leaking but haven't since I sealed it. As a budget tarp to keep you dry, I would recommended it with the caveat, seal the seam as recommended.
    I however am seeking a new tarp to
    1) lighten my pack,
    2) pack a bit smaller / reduce bulk,
    3) increase coverage (I got a longer hammock and my current one is a tight fit), and
    4) my kids are starting to get into hammock camping, so I need to spread the coverage.

    I'm hoping to keep below $100 and under 500 g for my next one. I have come candidates, next is saving the funds.
    I bought a 43 dollar (now 49, apparently) lightweight tarp from aliexpress. It was 20d, aroung 400g (14,1oz apparently) it works fine. I still prefer my heavier Hennessy hex fly.

    20190730_205710.jpg

  2. #22
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zpamnor View Post
    I bought a 43 dollar (now 49, apparently) lightweight tarp from aliexpress. It was 20d, aroung 400g (14,1oz apparently) it works fine. I still prefer my heavier Hennessy hex fly.

    20190730_205710.jpg
    Hmm... looks as if it is pitched on the wrong axis. Pretty sure the seam should be the ridge line.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

    Simplicity boils down to two steps: Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest. Leo Babauta

  3. #23
    Senior Member jeff-oh's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmoulder View Post
    Hmm... looks as if it is pitched on the wrong axis. Pretty sure the seam should be the ridge line.
    That shot makes it look much bigger than it is. It is a hex tarp so only the "Tip" is not shown in the picture and thus it gives the illusion that the tarp is hung in the middle, when in reality you are viewing 90% of the tarp.

  4. #24
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jeff-oh View Post
    That shot makes it look much bigger than it is. It is a hex tarp so only the "Tip" is not shown in the picture and thus it gives the illusion that the tarp is hung in the middle, when in reality you are viewing 90% of the tarp.
    Specs at the link show RL as 3.5 meters/11.4 ft, and no seam on the side. Call me crazy but that RL doesn't look like 11.4 feet... appears to barely cover the hammock... and look at the cat cuts. Looks utterly bass-ackwards to me.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

    Simplicity boils down to two steps: Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest. Leo Babauta

  5. #25
    Senior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by cmoulder View Post
    Specs at the link show RL as 3.5 meters/11.4 ft, and no seam on the side. Call me crazy but that RL doesn't look like 11.4 feet... appears to barely cover the hammock... and look at the cat cuts. Looks utterly bass-ackwards to me.
    It's pitched off-centre intentionally. Presumably with the low side into the wind/sun.

  6. #26
    cmoulder's Avatar
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    Hey, whatevz, it's zpamnor's tarp and he can pitch it however he likes.

    However, riding out a real rain storm with this configuration might prompt a re-evaluation.
    UL, because nobody ever asks "How can I make my pack heavier?"

    Simplicity boils down to two steps: Identify the essential. Eliminate the rest. Leo Babauta

  7. #27
    MacDuff1031's Avatar
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    The Chill Gorilla looks better than my Serac tarp from amazon. While it kept me dry the Serac is only 6í wide. I had to go with a narrow/ steep pitch to get enough side coverage. Iím sure to get wet from sideways rain at some point. Oh well live and learn. It still got me off the ground.



    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  8. #28
    Senior Member dakotaross's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SilvrSurfr View Post
    I haven't heard good things about it, but one thing I've learned is that people who like budget tarps can convince themselves something is a good value when it's not. When I first joined HF, the Guide Gear 12 x 12 tarp was all the rage - a $20 tarp that was a tremendous value, according to budget tarp fans. If you look on HF you will find hundreds of testimonials about what a great tarp it is. So I bought two of them and they leaked like a sieve. You don't hear about Guide Gear tarps anymore because it became apparent that people were deceiving themselves. There are only a couple of reviews of Chill Gorilla tarps on HF, and of course, they are positive. However, I went on a hang last year where it rained five inches overnight, and the Chill Gorilla did not fare so well, leaking like crazy after only a couple of hours. Luckily, someone was able to loan the person a tarp.

    I'd recommend looking for something with a bit better reputation like a Kelty Noah 12 x 12 or an HH Hex. You'll pay a bit more, but you'll probably stay a lot drier.

    HG has a sale on tarps right now - The Quest II for $59.99 and the Journey II for $79.99.
    Were they actually leaking, or was this more condensation or noob setup error? I'd bet its the latter. I do agree that unless you want something to keep in the car for that sort of camping, they're not a great value if in fact you end up replacing it with something lighter. But who among us doesn't have something hanging around in a box in the attic/basement/garage that ended up being a waste of money in time? The HG tarps mentioned truly are a better value.
    "I wonder if anyone else has an ear so tuned and sharpened as I have, to detect the music, not of the spheres, but of earth, subtleties of major and minor chord that the wind strikes upon the tree branches. Have you ever heard the earth breathe... ?"
    - Kate Chopin

  9. #29
    SilvrSurfr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotaross View Post
    Were they actually leaking, or was this more condensation or noob setup error? I'd bet its the latter. I do agree that unless you want something to keep in the car for that sort of camping, they're not a great value if in fact you end up replacing it with something lighter. But who among us doesn't have something hanging around in a box in the attic/basement/garage that ended up being a waste of money in time? The HG tarps mentioned truly are a better value.
    Not noob setup error - we helped her set up the tarp. And it definitely wasn't condensation. The inside of the tarp was soaked with water 15 minutes after the storm started. Was it seam sealed? Probably not, but judging by what I saw, that tarp wouldn't have been able to handle that storm (5 inches in five hours) even if it was seam sealed.
    "A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds." Ralph Waldo Emerson

  10. #30
    New Member MattB's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dakotaross View Post
    Were they actually leaking, or was this more condensation or noob setup error? I'd bet its the latter. I do agree that unless you want something to keep in the car for that sort of camping, they're not a great value if in fact you end up replacing it with something lighter. But who among us doesn't have something hanging around in a box in the attic/basement/garage that ended up being a waste of money in time? The HG tarps mentioned truly are a better value.
    I had an issue this weekend with a Chill Gorilla hex that I give out as a loaner. It has worked great in a light rain but was wetting through in what was an extremely heavy rain. Rain drops would hit the exterior of the tarp and a spray would burst through to the inside. This wasn't a failure of the seam tape or setup issues, this was the tarp not being able to handle the pressure of the rain drop based on the quality of the tarps coating.

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