Touring tents

Submitted: Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 20:31
ThreadID: 23392 Views:2512 Replies:13 FollowUps:22
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We are planning a trip outback in September and hope to spend as much time in bush pubs (overnight) as possible, but we will have to camp overnight on many occasions. My question is, what are the pitfalls of touring tents? They appear to be easy to set up, but we all know that any tent is a comprimise. My cabin tent is fine for long stays and the dome is fine for weekends but both are time consuming to set up for just overnight stops, that may have to be set up in low to no light situations. But what should we look out for with a touring tent?????
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Reply By: Member - Jiarna (SA) - Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 21:33

Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 21:33
Hi Colin

We have an Oztent RV3, and it is a breeze to set up. For just a quick overnight stop, we can have it off the roofrack, put it up and be in bed in under 10 minutes. Adding awnings etc takes a bit longer of course, but the tent itself only takes 30 sec.
The only drawback with this tent is the size - it is 2m long when packed up, so we carry it on the roofrack.
Hope your trip is a good one.

Cheers
John
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AnswerID: 113397

Follow Up By: Member - Browny (VIC) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 01:00

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 01:00
Col,

Ditto what John says, before you buy check them out, we've got the rv3 also..............Beauty.

Browny
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Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 08:57

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 08:57
Thanks John.
We are also aware of the pack size and the need to load it up top. Thanks for your input. Colin.
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Reply By: Member - Chrispy (NSW) - Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 21:57

Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 21:57
I'd have to suggest a rooftop tent.

1) Stop car

2) unzip cover

3) Pull ladder down

4) Go to sleep.

Pretty simple :)
AnswerID: 113402

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 22:28

Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 22:28
Decide you need to get some firewood for the fire.
1) fold up ladder

2) pack it up

3) hassle around go get firewood,

4) come back go through it all again.

5) decide you need Beer... Goto 1.
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Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 01:16

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 01:16
Must be tough in Vic with no trees or something, in the 70 odd nights I spent out bush for work last year all the firewood you could ever need was no further than 50m radius and as for beer the problem would not be climbing down to get it but climbing back up after you had emptyied the esky
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Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:00

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:00
Thanks guys,
not an option for us however as the trusty Outback only has a roof load limit of 100kg. Stop for a beer anytime you see us on the track. Colin
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Follow Up By: Member - Chrispy (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:06

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:06
Colin - 100kg limit is no problem! (My Jeeps' limit is 70kg)

The load limit usually refers to the "dynamic" weight of the load - i.e. while you're moving. Considering that the EezyAwn & Howling Moon tents weight about 60kg, you're way under your limit. Unless you intend to put 2 people up there (200kg or so) and then drive off, you'll be OK with the Outback.

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Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:14

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:14
Hey Crispy.
I will check that out further, Thanks, Colin.
If you see us on the track stop in for a drink sometime.
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Reply By: Aandy(WA) - Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 22:18

Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 22:18
My recommendation is a locally made canvas centre pole tent. Locally made is good for a)local industry and b)after sales service. I use a Southern Cross but there are a number of others. The centre pole tent needs only the perimeter pegs hammered in and the centre pole pushed up. Total time about a minute. It also does not require a roof rack as the previous two do - I like to keep everything inside the vehicle when I go off road. Roof racks cause much grief when the going gets tough. They also cost you money in extra fuel at highway speed, and heighten your centre of gravity which can be dangerous, not to mention the dust which gets into the roof top tent if you're travelling with a group in any place but leader! My observations of the Oztent are that they are rarely seen in true off road destinations and also although a 30second set up is claimed that doesn't include all the guys and pegs. 30 seconds gets the tent out of the bag and erected but not secured. Anyhow the best advice is to go and have a look for yourself. I certainly did and found the canvas centrepole tent to be suited to 4wd work. I also have a Coleman hike tent which is great for walking trips and a 12X9 cabin tent for longer stays.
AnswerID: 113404

Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:08

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:08
Aandy your right about local made. I am talking to a guy near us that is a repairer of tents to pay the bills, but he has a passion about the quality of the few tents he makes to order. We are looking at 3.5 x 3.5 as being the largest size to comfortably handle for one person (her at home is useless when it comes to helping with the erection) only kidding.
The tent we are looking at has a dust resistant zipped and velcro sealed bag so I hope it keeps a lot of the dust out. Thanks, Colin.
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Reply By: Truckster (Vic) - Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 22:27

Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 22:27
Look no further
AnswerID: 113408

Follow Up By: AndrewX - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 23:01

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 23:01
Read it carefully Truckster - not a great bargain me thinks. Light weight canvas and lots of warnings and no back up!!
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Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Wednesday, Jun 01, 2005 at 18:34

Wednesday, Jun 01, 2005 at 18:34
Eric has 2 of em, and several other members have em. No problems what so ever... So, yea, since they are cheaper than most DECENT dome tents, its ableepin bargain.
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Reply By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 23:06

Saturday, May 28, 2005 at 23:06
someones gotta say it SWAG as a single bloke with no kids it doesnt come any easier and if the weather threatans I have a tarp with the poles rolled up along the roof rack less set up = more beer drinking. Work and play means I have used it about 80 nights in the last year and love it
AnswerID: 113413

Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:11

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:11
I get claustrophbic in a swag. Not an option for me. Thanks anyway.
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Reply By: rob&kev&roo - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 00:15

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 00:15
I have to agree with SWAG. We { wife and I } have a swag each. easy to set up in any light. quick to set up and take down and if we decide to extend the stay in any one place we through up a tarp easy.
AnswerID: 113426

Reply By: Member - Matt- Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 01:19

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 01:19
C'mon Truckster, set camp with out fire wood... G'day Collin, make sure it is water proof, has plenty of ventilation, prehaps an awning for shade and enough room room to sit in ( on chairs) if the flies or mozzies are too bad, you know, when you've had dinner or you're still trying to eat it. Other than that ,it is like you said, whack in the pole and a couple of pegs if she is windy. But hey, I still love my roof top camper. There's plenty of options but I reckon they all need seam sealer!
AnswerID: 113429

Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:19

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 09:19
Yeh, we have conciderd that and that is what prompted my question. I like our queen size bed and was wondering how much space that leaves us for sitting and eating due to the slopeing sides???
The tent we are looking at has a larger than normal "hoop" at the top that gives us a bit more internal space than some tents, so I hope this is not a problem itsself. Thanks for your input Matt. Colin.
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Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 11:13

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 11:13
Matt.. You have never setup camp, and run out of wood long before you wanted to?
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Reply By: Member - Jack - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 14:44

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 14:44
Tanami Tourers on eBay

These come up pretty often, and the going rate seems to be $230 - $260. I got one for $235 about 2 months ago to use as a second/weekend, single stop tent (I also have an Oztent). Might be handy if you have the patience to wait for one at the price you want to pay. Be prepared to spend a bit of time waterproofing it. The link that Truckster has provided earlier in this thread will give you a bit more insight into these tents.

If you decide to get a Tanami Tourer, put some Nylock nuts on the arms, as the others seem to "disappear".

Jack
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AnswerID: 113456

Reply By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 16:30

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 16:30
I always use a tent and always take my offroad trailer, just empty the trailer of the plastic boxes and go and get the fire wood after i set up camp. Usually there is no firewood in a 500metre radius of most established campgrounds. I was at Hill End a few months ago, came back with an enormous cache of firewood in about an hour and the look on the other campers faces!!!! I felt sorry for some who didnt have the means to go out and collect so i shared it around. So a tent and a trailer suits me for that reason alone. Michael
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AnswerID: 113463

Follow Up By: AndrewX - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 22:49

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 22:49
Thank heaven there's not too many people who go out and collect a huge cache of firewood! Shame on you - environmental vandalism!! Then again you probably just put that in to get a reaction.
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Follow Up By: Michael ( Moss Vale NSW) - Wednesday, Jun 01, 2005 at 15:59

Wednesday, Jun 01, 2005 at 15:59
Well Andrew, i was there for 5 days and as you know sticks and dead branches dont reall stack neatlly like sawn logs. divided by 5..... think about it. Why dont not assume anything and run off and find yourself a pedal-car forum!!!!!
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Reply By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 18:44

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 18:44
Thanks to all replies. No one has given a sound reason NOT to go for a Touring Tent for travelling. Some of you gave me food for thought, based on your own preferences and I will now go through the replies and mack my decision with your replies in mind. Thank you all. Happy Trails.
AnswerID: 113473

Follow Up By: Member - Ross P (NSW) - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 12:16

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 12:16
The reason we didn't go Touring tent was centre pole and sloping sides.

We ended up going for a Coleman Classic.

No centre pole and almost vertical walls makes for much more useable interior.

Other nice thing is the rear window which as a "Gusset" so that you can leave the window open and still have privacy and rain protection. Other windows can be open and closed from the inside. Good if there's a change of weather through the night.

The clasic is very easy to erect, I say 15 mins though, by the time you've pegged everything down. 5mins for just a peg at each corner.

Only negative is that I did break a roof pole until I worked out that you should leave the windows and doors open when erecting. There's a vacuum formed if you don't and it puts too much stress on the centre pole when you a erecting the side poles.
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Follow Up By: cj - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 14:02

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 14:02
Coleman Classic is the other brand. I couldn't think of the name that Ray's had copied for their cabin tent that I mentioned in my other post..
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Reply By: SmithyWA - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 20:35

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 20:35
Hi Colin

I have just purchased a Freedom family tourer. These are not a cheap tent but are as good as anything on the market quality wise. The thing I really like is the spring loaded centre pole. It holds the sides up nice and straight and they don't sag in windy conditions due to the spring in the pole absorbing the stress of the tent moving in the wind. Also the corner pegs can pull from this movement if the centre pole is rigid especially in sand country.

Two adults would be fine in the smaller tourer version.

Cheers

Mark
AnswerID: 113494

Follow Up By: Truckster (Vic) - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 21:31

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 21:31
He doesnt have room for a single pole 9x9, let alone the family tourer ;)
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Follow Up By: AndrewX - Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 22:53

Sunday, May 29, 2005 at 22:53
Just wait till the squeaking of the spring loaded pole keeps you awake one windy night. Nothing but a "selling point" - and completely unnecessary IRL.
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Follow Up By: Well 55 - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 14:49

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 14:49
I've used the Family Tourer for over 13 years and yes the centre pole squeaks in heavy wind, thats what WD40 was made for.

On a 12 month trip never had an issue with the selling point of a spring loaded pole that kept the tent nice and taught and still allowed movement in strong wind. Yes its is necessary in my opinion.
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Reply By: cj - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 11:15

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 11:15
Took the Wife to look at tents and she saw a cabin tent in Ray's that suits her as she didn't want any poles in the way and wanted good headroom. It looks like a knockoff of another brand they sell but Ray's version is cheaper (especially on Sale) and has a better awning as it has sides unlike the other brand. I wanted something that was relatively quick and easy to put up while she looked after the little one. Quality didn't seem too bad and it has a 10 year warranty so for the money versus the amount of use it will get it seems reasonable and is on the short list.

http://www.raysoutdoors.com.au/html/Products/19462.html
AnswerID: 113538

Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 19:34

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 19:34
I'll have a look at it, thanks cj.
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Reply By: Member - Tim - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 13:09

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 13:09
Hi Colin,

We have used the touring tent (southern cross 10x10) quite a bit and find it very good. Went with a group to Fraser and we had ours set up and were busy setting up the communal tarp while the others were still setting up their domes. We have also just bought one of the Microfast tents made by the oxtent people and will be trying that out on an upcoming trip. It looks pretty good and the practices of putting it up and down really do seem to be as quick as they say. We will be using the southern cross for us and the microfast for the kids.

One thing you can do with the touring tents is to get the kit that takes the centre pole out. We don't bother with it most of the time but it gives you the whole area and only adds a couple of minutes to the set up.

Tim.
AnswerID: 113559

Follow Up By: Member - Colin P (NSW) - Monday, May 30, 2005 at 19:32

Monday, May 30, 2005 at 19:32
G'day Tim
I thought about that option, and felt it cancels the ease of the touring tent. But thinking about it its only two poles over one I guess.
Thanks for your input Tim.
Regards, Colin.
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FollowupID: 369696

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