Backcountry Forum

Make Your Own Gear

Amazon.com
Backpacking Forums
BackcountryGear.com
backcountry gear

---- Our Gear Store ----
The Lightweight Gear Store
 
 WINTER CAMPING 

Shelters
Bivy Bags
Sleeping Bags
Sleeping Pads
Snow Sports
Winter Kitchen

 SNOWSPORTS 

Snowshoes
Avalanche Gear
Skins
Hats, Gloves, & Gaiters
Accessories

 ULTRA-LIGHT 

Ultralight Backpacks
Ultralight Bivy Sacks
Ultralight Shelters
Ultralight Tarps
Ultralight Tents
Ultralight Raingear
Ultralight Stoves & Cookware
Ultralight Down Sleeping Bags
Ultralight Synthetic Sleep Bags
Ultralight Apparel


the Titanium Page
WM Extremelite Sleeping Bags

 CAMPING & HIKING 

Backpacks
Tents
Sleeping Bags
Hydration
Kitchen
Accessories

 CLIMBING 

Ropes & Cordage
Protection & Hardware
Carabiners & Quickdraws
Climbing Packs & Bags
Big Wall
Rescue & Industrial

 MEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 WOMEN'S APPAREL 

Jackets
Shirts
Baselayer
Headwear
Gloves
Accessories

 FOOTWEAR 

Men's Footwear
Women's Footwear

 CLEARANCE 

Backpacks
Mens Apparel
Womens Apparel
Climbing
Footwear
Accessories

 BRANDS 

Black Diamond
Granite Gear
La Sportiva
Osprey
Smartwool

 WAYS TO SHOP 

Sale
Clearance
Top Brands
All Brands

 Backpacking Equipment 

Shelters
BackPacks
Sleeping Bags
Water Treatment
Kitchen
Hydration
Climbing


 Backcountry Gear Clearance


Stay Healthy--Eat Well

MARY JANES FARM ORGANIC MEALS

Mary Janes Farm Organic Backcountry Meals

NATURAL HIGH GOURMET MEALS

Natural High

 

Topic Options
Rate This Topic
#166259 - 05/29/12 12:14 PM Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut)
Spherical Cow Offline
newbie

Registered: 04/22/11
Posts: 7
Not sure how widely known this technique is, but a friend suggested it... I got great results. This technique applies to plastic tarps. Here goes:

How to cut a custom ground cloth/tarp:
-I opted for a 5Mil thick tarp available at your local hardware store for ~ $15... the one in the photo is 8x10 ft.
-The tent I have is the TarpTent Moment (pic1, pic2).
-Trace out the shape you need (I placed the tent on the tarp, made some marks, then connected the dots using a straight edge... making sure everything was nice and symmetric).
-Now you are ready to cut (a flat smooth concrete garage floor is ideal for this task)...
-Use a standard soldering iron set pretty high (mine was set to 800F, nearly max setting)... place a straight edge (metal ruler OR similar) and trace your lines. Do a few practice cuts on scrap to get the hang of how fast you should go.
-Tracing with the iron cuts / melts the plastic tarp... preventing the fraying that would occur if simply cutting with a blade.
-Take your time and you'll have a nice custom shaped ground tarp. I was lucky enough to be able to utilize two of the grommets that came on the tarp.

Tarp as purchased:


Example cut with iron:


Tarp after cutting:


Tarp in (small) stuff sack (w/ 4 MSR groundhog stakes and guy-line):
(large stuff sack is tent; foot is for scale grin )



Top
#166264 - 05/29/12 01:38 PM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: Spherical Cow]
PerryMK Offline
member

Registered: 01/18/02
Posts: 1155
Loc: Florida panhandle
I use a Hefty Lawn bag. It's designed not to be punctured readily, is waterproof and very light.

I'm not sure I can take advice from you; your shop is way too clean. Even your workbench is organized. Just kidding! smile

I like the grommet usage.

Top
#166265 - 05/29/12 01:54 PM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: Spherical Cow]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
You want to cut the footprint about 2 inches less on each side than the perimeter of the tent. Otherwise rain going down the sides of the tent will run right under the tent on top of the footprint.

How much does your footprint weigh?

Most people use either Tyvek or polycro (the kind of plastic used in storm window kits). I haven't used a footprint/ground cloth in years. Silnylon floors are amazingly durable.


Edited by OregonMouse (05/29/12 04:04 PM)
Edit Reason: Correct spelling!
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#166272 - 05/29/12 03:27 PM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: OregonMouse]
lori Offline
member

Registered: 01/22/08
Posts: 2801
Originally Posted By OregonMouse


Most people use either Tyvek or polypro (the kind of plastic used in storm window kits). I haven't used a footprint/ground cloth in years. Silnylon floors are amazingly durable.


I think you mean polycryo.

I use tyvek, or nothing at all.
_________________________
"In the beginner's mind there are many possibilities. In the expert's mind there are few." Shunryu Suzuki

http://hikeandbackpack.com

Top
#166273 - 05/29/12 03:27 PM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: OregonMouse]
Spherical Cow Offline
newbie

Registered: 04/22/11
Posts: 7
I did cut the ground tarp just a bit smaller than the perimeter of the tent (I assumed this to be common knowledge)... I'm new to this forum, not camping wink

I didn't weigh it yet... I will and post weight. I first used 1Mil plastic sheet I had lying around, which weighed 'nothing', but after a few nights on the trail I decided it was just too thin. I paid a lot for my tent, and don't want to puncture the floor (which seems precariously thin on the Moment). The extra weight of a 5Mil plastic sheet is worth it, IMHO. It may very well be overkill.

A special note: For the Moment, you want to cut your ground cloth so that it's just a bit smaller than the perimeter of the tent, not simply the size of the bathtub floor. This prevents ground moisture from evaporating and rising up through the mesh of the Moment that faces the ground (and the vestibule area, too). This GREATLY reduces condensation problems. << This is another reason to use the ground tarp with the Moment.

Top
#166274 - 05/29/12 04:09 PM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: Spherical Cow]
OregonMouse Offline
member

Registered: 02/03/06
Posts: 6399
Loc: Gateway to Columbia Gorge
Since we do have a lot of beginners visit this forum, it is a good idea to write instructions for them, which is why I mentioned cutting the footprint smaller.

Silnylon appears fragile but is amazingly tough. I've never used a ground sheet with it and never had any kind of puncture, even with my dog sleeping inside.

However, I'm intrigued by the idea that the footprint might reduce internal condensation!
_________________________
May your trails be crooked, winding, lonesome, dangerous, leading to the most amazing view--E. Abbey

Top
#166279 - 05/29/12 07:12 PM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: OregonMouse]
Spherical Cow Offline
newbie

Registered: 04/22/11
Posts: 7
Understood. I didn't realize the silnylon was so tough.

If you see no need for the ground tarp for protection, then thin (e.g. 1MIL) plastic should serve well to reduce condensation (if your tent has netting facing the ground, or a large vestibule, like mine). In fact, the plastic sheeting shown in the pics of my tent is 1MIL that I originally cut to fit. I may end up going back to it, in light of your input!

BTW, the 5MIL tarp weighed in at a hefty 9oz! I suspect that is WAY too much for most of you weight-conscious. I didn't realize it would weigh that much. Oh well. Thanks for the input.

Top
#166466 - 06/05/12 12:27 AM Re: Custom Ground Cloth/Tarp (how to cut) [Re: Spherical Cow]
Franco Offline
member

Registered: 04/05/04
Posts: 997
Loc: Australia
good idea about covering the vestibule area too.
yes that does reduce condensation from ground evaporation.
(one can always fold the vestibule bit under the floor if not wanted ..)

Yes it is Polycryo , as far as I know just a name that GG made up for their window insulation material, but most do call it polycro anyway..
Franco

Top

Shout Box

Highest Quality Lightweight Down Sleeping Bags
 
Western Mountaineering Sleeping Bags
 
Lite Gear Talk - Featured Topics
Bivvy bag with wired peak
by Petro1234
Today at 01:06 PM
How cheap can you go?
by EMT Dave
12/05/17 07:07 PM
compass, thermometer, baro/altimeter
by edfardos
11/19/17 09:54 PM
Backcountry Discussion - Featured Topics
Just found out about UCO candles
by toddfw2003
11/30/17 08:41 AM
Hitting the eagle rock loop, Ark in 3 days
by toddfw2003
11/19/17 11:31 AM
Flamable fabrics?
by
11/13/17 09:31 PM
Make Your Own Gear - Featured Topics
Plant based insulation...
by billstephenson
11/18/17 02:58 PM
lightest grommets to use
by toddfw2003
10/22/17 06:13 PM
avalibility of thin ti rod
by the-gr8t-waldo
01/26/17 04:45 PM
Featured Photos
Breakneck Ridge, New York
May 2012 Eclipse, Lassen Park
New Years Eve 2011
Trip Report with Photos
Seven Devils, Idaho
Oat Hill Mine Trail 2012
Dark Canyon - Utah
Who's Online
1 registered (), 27 Guests and 0 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Newest Members
Woodland, ultralight, Wilderbabe, 1321132, guoguo
12466 Registered Users
Forum Links
Disclaimer
Policies
Site Links
HOME
Backpacking.net
Family Hiking
Lightweight Gear Store
Backpacking Book Store
Lightweight Zone
Hiking Essentials

Outdoor Gear Daily Deals
Outlets, Sales, Bargains

Our long-time Sponsor, BackcountryGear.com - The leading source for ultralite/lightweight outdoor gear:

Backcountry Forum
 
 

Since 1996 - the Original Backcountry Forum
Copyright © The Lightweight Backpacker & BackcountryForum.com