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  1. #1
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    Default Tarp shapes: rectangle vs caternary

    Hi Folks,
    Thanks for your good advice re tarps vs tents. I have decided to buy a tarp, but am looking for guidance using a traditional rectangle vs the caternary cut as illustrated. Thoughts?

    https://www.amazon.com/Sanctuary-Sil...56T5A5GBRK2M18

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by Game Warden View Post
    Hi Folks,
    Thanks for your good advice re tarps vs tents. I have decided to buy a tarp, but am looking for guidance using a traditional rectangle vs the caternary cut as illustrated. Thoughts?

    https://www.amazon.com/Sanctuary-Sil...56T5A5GBRK2M18
    Decent flat tarp starter kit.

    For a bit more Oware makes cat cut 1.5 or 2 p coverage, good coverage for tarp neophytes and advanced tarpers without breaking the bank setting up in a frame configuration. With the cat cut ridge line and hems maintaining a taut pitch is easier if the fabric choice is going to be silny.

    If expecting much use in rainy or winter w snow loads use look at shaped mid silny options. There's no real reason why a silny mid can't be used in rainy eastern conditions if one makes but a simple effort. In some ways a mid is simpler than a tent so don't buy into anti taro rhetoric that a shaped tarp a mid can't be used effectively and simply on the east coast with but simple shelter skills

  3. #3
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    I agree with Dogwood. I'd recommend an 8 x 10 silnylon flat tarp to start out. Tarp, 8 stakes, and some line and you're all set. Search youtube video's on "how to" the many different possible pitches.

    Once you get some experience you'll figure out more as to what you might want/need longer term. Or you may just stay with the 8 x 10. It's a very versatile size and shape.

  4. #4
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    The rectangle is another 5 ozs.

  5. #5

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    I've read that silnylon sags, while silpoly will not. I'm looking at this one:
    https://yamamountaingear.com/product...t-tarp-silpoly

    Rectangle/flat-sided just seems easier.
    Last edited by AllDownhillFromHere; 03-28-2019 at 19:59.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by AllDownhillFromHere View Post
    I've read that silnylon sags, while silpoly will not. I'm looking at this one:
    https://yamamountaingear.com/product...t-tarp-silpoly

    Rectangle/flat-sided just seems easier.
    I have used flat 8x10 silnylon tarps for years, including some nasty rain. Never had a problem with sagging. I would say that 8 stakes is perhaps an excess. Depends on your setup, I suppose.
    "It's fun to have fun, but you have to know how." ---Dr. Seuss

  7. #7
    4eyedbuzzard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Feral Bill View Post
    I have used flat 8x10 silnylon tarps for years, including some nasty rain. Never had a problem with sagging. I would say that 8 stakes is perhaps an excess. Depends on your setup, I suppose.
    Yeah, number of stakes can easily be less depending if trees can be used for ridgeline and/or rocks or trees or such for tieouts. Carrying 8 gives you two for each trekking pole if used at the peaks and 3 on each long side when needed for a classic A-frame pitch. Usually you need 6 for a tipi. But with two trees you could pitch on a diagonal with just two stakes - or even none if there are other tie out points available.
    Last edited by 4eyedbuzzard; 03-29-2019 at 06:08.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Game Warden View Post
    Hi Folks,
    Thanks for your good advice re tarps vs tents. I have decided to buy a tarp, but am looking for guidance using a traditional rectangle vs the caternary cut as illustrated. Thoughts?

    https://www.amazon.com/Sanctuary-Sil...56T5A5GBRK2M18
    I've been waiting for the 8x10 to come in. They've been outta stock on it for about 6 weeks

  9. #9
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    Can you make a good pyramid with a cat-cut tarp? I never tried. A rectangular tarp always seemed more versatile to me. Perhaps in particular because I generally only carry one pole, and the cat-cut tarps just don't seem well suited to other than the one (2-pole) pitch they're designed for. I could be wrong seeing as I never actually tried them -- but that impression is why I haven't.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by 4eyedbuzzard View Post
    I agree with Dogwood. I'd recommend an 8 x 10 silnylon flat tarp to start out. Tarp, 8 stakes, and some line and you're all set. Search youtube video's on "how to" the many different possible pitches.

    Once you get some experience you'll figure out more as to what you might want/need longer term. Or you may just stay with the 8 x 10. It's a very versatile size and shape.
    If you are looking to get some experience before deciding what you want in a trap, start with just a cheap blue tarp from Walmart or the like. It will heavier and perhaps a little more difficult to handle (because I believe they are a bit stiffer that silnylon or Cuban fiber), but will protect you about as well as the tarps costing 10x more (i.e. the blue tarp is cheap to practice with).

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zalman View Post
    Can you make a good pyramid with a cat-cut tarp? I never tried. A rectangular tarp always seemed more versatile to me.
    Yes, if you're referring to a flat tarp with catenary cuts on all sides

    In Mids and some half mid shaped tarps the ridge lines may be cat cut.

  12. #12
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    I played around with the HMG echo tarp a couple winters ago and used it about 4-5 nights with perfect weather. I decided to quit while I was ahead and go back to using my tent. Its just not enough coverage/ protected space for me personally. If I want a tarp like feel I just roll all my door flaps up. Then if it starts raining I can roll them down and am good to go.

  13. #13

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    Slept on the ground under a hennessy tarp the other night, and it sucked and left me wanting more cover

  14. #14
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    An Old Geezer’s Idea.
    TarpTent Rainfly.
    Notch or StratoSpire 1.
    Makes a very secure shelter with a lot of storage space for gear.
    Can be used with the inner tent for full tent protection when needed. Zero fiddle factor.
    Worth pondering.
    Wayne

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