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  1. #1
    Senior Member spidennis's Avatar
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    SuperFly Tarp / snaps and big RAIN!

    when I heard that the superfly tarp now had snaps I said "cool, I can take them off or leave them on, my choice" , (unlike on my speer swt).

    this afternoon I went through a really good rain, a real downpour and stayed under the superfly (with bb). I heard the storm cell approaching and saw it on my nexrad weather radar on my garmin 478 and had just enough time to re-set the tarp. I had it a bit low for high protection but wanted to raise it a bit for better air flow and to see just how it might handle the rain, but what we got I wasn't expecting though I did get the superfly to the real test!

    I learned a few things from the heavy downpour, one was that the "drip drain" on the blackbird worked pretty darn good, this is the combo of straps and triangle rings. something I didn't expect to find out is that unlike on my other hammock setup and tarp is that if I was to strike camp right after the rain those soaking wet straps were going to end up inside the stuff bag with my dry hammock, not a good thing! though I hadn't have it happen yet with the bb, tree sap is also going to be a problem so I think I prefer to have my straps separate from hammock.

    I'm thinking about surviving the nasty conditions and what I'd might have to do to weather the storm when in the backcountry and keep going like nothing happened. details, details, details ........

    so on to the superfly tarp and the snaps. In a regular rain the tarp did just fine, better than fine. It's bigger than the speer swt, and has side pull outs, something I wanted so I could have max rain protection. In the big rains however the small openings between the snaps would allow a small amount of spray in making things a bit damp. Now the thing is, just what can I do about this? Snaps? yeah, thought they were cool at first, but always left them attached and always use the door panels. hey, it's why I got a max protection tarp in the first place. besides, I'd just tie up the two doors to each other underneath so they were out of the way when the weather was nice. the few oz isn't a problem for me. do I really need this snap feature? nope. so do I sew it up somehow? Ideas, suggestions are welcome .....

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    What small openings between the snaps? You mean the snaps aren't close enough together and located in far enough from the hen to eliminate gapping between the doors and the main tarp?

  3. #3
    Senior Member spidennis's Avatar
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    Maybe the snap placement is a bit too wide for big wind driven rain? anyway, I spent another night in the bb and superfly and it rained the whole time and the snaps/doors did just fine, I was dry as a bone. Now I'm talking regular rain not super downpour and driving winds, but even so in the big storm of yesterday it wasn't all that bad, and I'd have to gather if other tarps were in the same conditions any lesser tarp would have had you soaked for sure! My speer swt might have done ok as well, but certainly any diamond fly would have made for a soggy next day. I'm at the point of which if I put up a tarp in my neck of the woods with the weather conditions as they are I just have to plan on rain, and sometimes big rain. I have a few canoe/kayak trips I got planned as training for an upcoming 3 day race so I'm just trying to be prepared the best I can be ....... once i'm out there there's no running for the house, it's my gear that will get me thru .....

  4. #4
    gargoyle's Avatar
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    My only recommendation would be to stake the bottom corners as taught as possible. Lowering the tarp so that it is tight to the ground will also help how the tarp sheds wind. A couple of tarp clips could close your snap gaps.

    We are talking about a tarp.. its not ever going to be totally bomb-proof. Stitching the doors would be the other solution.

    Setting up just beneath a hill for a windblock can help substantially. Anything you can do to hide from the wind helps. Try staking the corners directly to the ground for the tightest pitch.

    Good luck on your trip.
    Ambulo tua ambulo.

  5. #5
    Senior Member shrek's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by spidennis View Post
    something I didn't expect to find out is that unlike on my other hammock setup and tarp is that if I was to strike camp right after the rain those soaking wet straps were going to end up inside the stuff bag with my dry hammock, not a good thing! though I hadn't have it happen yet with the bb, tree sap is also going to be a problem so I think I prefer to have my straps separate from hammock.

    .
    You could always leave your straps outside the stuff sack and just wrap them around the outside. Might want to strap the sack to the outside of your backpack until they dry, but it should keep from getting your hammock wet.
    "I used to be sane, but now I'm better."

  6. #6
    Senior Member Cannibal's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by FarStar View Post
    What small openings between the snaps? You mean the snaps aren't close enough together and located in far enough from the hen to eliminate gapping between the doors and the main tarp?
    If I remember right, there are 5 snaps on each door. I don't know how far apart the snaps are, but there is a fairly large space between them. I can easily see how strong winds could open those up enough to let in some spray. I still view it in a good light because imagine how much spray would be coming in without the doors in place.

    I think the one problem with doored tarps is that they may lull folks into some false sense of security. Site selection is still King and when ignored will jump right up and bite you. In storms, I set-up my winter tarps using the same logic as I would my summer tarps. The doors, particularly the snapped doors, are just an added bonus. Tarps should still be set the same, with the same orientation to the weather. JMO, but it has served me very well.
    Trust nobody!

  7. #7
    the biggest opening of all is still going to be the opening the hammock ropes come in through. sure the moisture wasn't coming in through there instead?

  8. #8
    Whoooo Buddy)))) Shug's Avatar
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    I would just undo my straps from the triangle buckles ...... only takes a wee bit of time to take off and put back on in those wet conditions.
    I sewed my doors on my large DIY tarp ......
    As gargoyle said ... when tarping you sometimes have to pay for that wonderful view, breeze and kitchen.
    Whoooo Buddy)))) I Love Onions, Grits, Greens, Livermush, NC Style BBQ, Potted Meat, Anchovies, 'Naner Puddin", Peanut Butter Pie, Red Velvet Cake and Cocoa and Straaaaaawwwwberrrry Milk and Coffee Crisps....
    I Hope Heaven has a Bakery!!!!



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  9. #9
    Senior Member spidennis's Avatar
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    ok, first I gotta say ........
    everything is a compromise ....
    and not any which way is perfect for all times.
    oh boy do we all know that!
    who is it here that has how many blackbirds?
    and none of them are "standard"?
    and it appears that everyone here really "tinkers" with their gear ...
    all looking for the best options to suit them.
    It's gotta be a tough job building something to suit everyone ....
    my hat is off to you brandon!

    brandon has a point about the opening of the doors as that is the biggest opening of all but, his doors are great! very little spray (or rain) actually came in thru the door opening. I put my swt over the superfly to see a comparison. the superfly doors do provide much more coverage. I did have to drop one corner of the tarp during the downpour as I was getting spray underneath. I say "spray" because it wasn't "rain". also, I didn't have the tarp pulled down steep and tight, I reset the tarp a bit higher to see what I can get away with and have a bit of a view during the rain, a normal rain, but wow, what I got was anything like normal! still, the superfly did great and much better than the swt I'd have to gather. I wish I could brew up another storm like this so I can go out there and play some more.

    I used some office paper binding clips in between the snaps to see how it looks. I'll play around this a bit more .... maybe a few more snaps, maybe stitching? I'll have to sleep on it a bit ..... hanging, of course!

  10. #10
    gargoyle's Avatar
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    You could also stitch on velcro or additional guylines as ties for doors. I stitch some line to my doors, ( a matching set of five inch guy line). They are light and you dont notice them till I need them.
    Ambulo tua ambulo.

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