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  1. #1
    altruistguy's Avatar
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    Do we want tarp lines to stretch?

    So I'm getting a new WB tarp, which I have to put the lines on myself. And I got to wondering whether it is good to have stretchable (i.e., nylon) or less stretchable (i.e., Zing-It) ridgeline & tie-outs?

    1) On the one hand, especially when it snows (I live in MI), non-stretching lines could improve the rig's performance. In the absence of non-stretching lines, snow might really "bog down" one's fly (i.e., cause major sagging).

    2) But on the other hand, if you have non-stretching lines, those same conditions (i.e., either snow or heavy winds) might result in catastrophic failure of either the lines themselves or (worse) the tarp material itself.

    3) A related question is whether it is desirable to have adjustable means of securing those lines (e.g., taut-line hitch, prussiks, etc.) or a more secure means (e.g., Dutchware Stingerz). IF those extreme conditions occur, the adjustable option will allow the line to slack, possibly precluding damage to the fabric. But if the extreme conditions occur with the less forgiving attachment, the tarp could tear.

    4) And a last related question -- in soft soil, do you make do with stakes that have a fair chance of getting pulled out in high winds, or do you use something that is the stake equivalent of a cement block (e.g., ToughStakes)?

  2. #2
    Bubba's Avatar
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    Self tensioning guylines help to address many of the issues you talk about. They allow give in wind and keep the tarp taut as the silnylon stretches when wet or when first set up. I wouldn't use nylon because not only will it stretch but it will aborb water and it's also bulkier than other cordage. I personally go with non stretchy lines even in winter.
    Last edited by Bubba; 10-27-2013 at 22:43.
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  3. #3
    hawghangar's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bubba View Post
    Self tensioning guylines help to address many of the issues you talk about. They allow give in wind and keep the tarp taut as the silnylon stretches when wet or when first set up. Nylon will not only stretch but will aborb water. I personally go with non stretchy lines even in winter.
    I have both on each guyline so that I can utilize most appropriate for the conditions.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Rolloff's Avatar
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    If I can't tie off tarp lines to something solid, root, tree, something, then I'll use a rock over the stake, or heavy piece of wood. A few wraps around it, then drive the stake in behind it, and lay it on top of the stake.

    Something I always like to keep note of is the fact it is actually preferable for tarp cordage to break, before damage to the tarp occurs. One can much easier replace a RL or Tie out, than enact a tarp repair, during foul weather. That probably makes Lashit and Zingit over kill, but it's light weight and ability to take a splice, just wins out.

    Stretching is not the problem. Not being elastic enough to "rebound" back to proper tension, however is. Anything even approaching those qualities weighs far too much, for our applications. I think some people use and carry up to 100' of cordage, so it's not just gram wienie stuff. 30-35' CRL, 25-30'Tie Outs, 20-30' Shock cord for pull outs and self tensioners. In bear country? Add another 80-100' to bear bag. Don't forget a few extra lengths for extenders and maybe even a few feet for back up.
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  5. #5
    mountain_man_mike's Avatar
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    I use the line from Z-paks along with their no knot glides and attach them to about 12" of shock cord for each of the corners and a small braided cord with taut line hitch for the ends.

    It works for me, but as always, HYOH.
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