Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: boston, ma
Hammock: My own ... the Lithium Cocoon
Insulation: It depends.
Suspension: 3/16 Sta-set
Here's how to make a Tyvek tarp
1) Before assembly, through the washer agitate cycle for 10 minutes (that's the typical setting anyway). No detergent. I haven't found hot or cold water to make a difference. Take it out and drip-dry.
2) Cut to size. Tyvek will get smaller by about 8% in the washer. I don't say "shrink" because it doesn't really shrink, but it gets kinda three-dimensional leaving you with a smaller footprint.
3) Assemble. If you're making some shape, adding beaks, using 3-foot material to make wider stuff, or other exotica, now is the time. Use only "Tyvek Tape".
4) Everywhere you want a tie-out, build up with Tyvek Tape. Build up 3 layers on each side.
5) You got small bungee, right? Use a soldering iron to melt 2 holes at each tie-out point, about 2 inches apart. The holes should be just slightly smaller than the bungee diameter.
6) At each tie-out position ... from the "inside" or "underneath" side of the tarp, slide the bungee thru one or the holes and back in thru the other. Since you made the holes smaller than the bungeee, you will need to stretch the bungee a bit, and when it relaxes, it will fill the hole.
7) Tie the free ends of the bungee into a figure-eight stopper knot.
8) To set up your tarp....
8a) Put up a ridgeline using paracord.
8b) Add 2 prusik loops to the ridgeline.
8c) Lay the tarp over the ridgeline. Use a mini-biner to clip the bungee to the prusiks, OR if your prusik is long enough, you can just put the stopper knot on the prusik loop up thru the bungee loop, and over the bungee stopper.
8d) Slide the ridgeline prusiks apart to center and tension the tarp fabric.
Voila! A finished Tyvek tarp with built-in tie-outs and tensioners.
There are a few drawbacks to Tyvek: 1) It's light, but not the lightest, 2) It doesn't compress well, 3) I haven't found a good way to color it (my next wheeze is to dip it in a bucket of strong coffee or tea), 4) Sometimes raindrops will spray thru the wrinkled fabric, right at the wrinkles.
Yeah I know you want pictures, but I don't have any just now.
Nice instructions on the tarp/tensioner setup. Interesting idea!
I've always used pebbles/acorns/etc. on the trail for the "button" method. I have some Tyvek tape, and a roll of 3' wide tyvek to try it on...
The other adhesive I've found useful for overlapped seams is Carpet Tape. Basically, it's an adhesive with a few fibers in it for structure. I overlapped two 12" wide pieces and played tug-of-war with the seam. The seam won. Tyvek tape was just as strong when I taped Both sides of the seam. If you google Tyvek Sail, you'll find a few people with instructions on how to make small boat sails from tyvek with Carpet tape.
RE: Coloring tyvek: I've given up. the best I can get is a dull gray when I used LOTS of fabric dye, and it still rubs off.