[Ansteorra] Opinions on tent

Haraldr Bassi (ansteorra lists) ansteorra at haraldr.drakkar.org
Tue Mar 13 12:20:02 PDT 2007

I am new to Ansteorra (will be arriving later this month) but not new to 
camping. If at all possible I would highly recommend a canvas tent over a nylon 
tent any day of the week.

But note that you don't need to go to the extreme of an $1100 marquis when there 
are perfectly suitable tents available for far less.

A very good tent style to investigate is what is referred to as a wall tent. 
They are perfectly appropriate for much of SCA period, from roman to later 
periods. They are also appropriate for revolutionary and civil war and French 
Indian war re-creation. They are also the basic modern Boy Scout cabin tent. 
They will not seem out of place in any setting. The advantage is you can use the 
entire floor space and not have to worry about where the bed is.

My own wall tent is nominally 12'x12' and stands 9' tall at the peak and has 5' 
side walls. I can stand right up to the edge of the tent. It has plenty of space 
for my full size four post bed, and could easily accommodate a queen size bed. 
It might even hold a king size bed but that would be too weird for camping :)

What many people haven't touched upon is the cool factor of canvas over nylon. 
While I haven't yet camped in Ansteorra, I have many years experience camping in 
the high heat and higher humidity of the northeast (Pennsic et al). My canvas 
tent with the built in roof vent (and my 20' yurt with the roof hole before it) 
have always been noticeably cooler inside than the general air temperature of 
the really hot Pennsics. When we have had temps above 100 degrees with humidity 
in the 80-110% range, I even had no problems sleeping until 1pm in my 20' yurt 
(I was doing overnight security shifts that year back at PW24). Meanwhile all 
around me every occupant of *any* nylon tent was up and out of the tent shortly 
after sunrise.

Lastly, nobody has yet mentioned the rain hazards of tents. Every nylon tent I 
have ever encountered would quickly and easily wick moisture through the wall 
*anywhere* that anything touched the tent wall or roof. I have never had the 
same issue in my canvas tents. Even if the bedding on the tent was tossed in 
such a way that it was pushing the side of the tent out, it still stayed dry 

I highly recommend that you look at a moderate priced canvas (preferably 
Sunforger cotton canvas) wall tent. In the past I have found them available for 
$370-800. Look for places that cater to the civil war market as they are often 
much less expensive due to the volume they are making. My own tent was made by 
Tentsmiths of New Hampshire, but they were selected not because of price but 
because of their attention to quality and they were the only vendor that would 
put a roof vent into the tent. I will only ever own a tent with a roof vent and 
was willing to pay what at the time was several hundred more for the tent (circa 
$700-800 IIRC).

Good luck with your tent purchase and know that I and many others here and on 
other lists stand ready to regale you with stories of tents and camping should 
you have further questions.

Hoping this helps,
Haraldr Bassi
currently of Frosted Hills in the East
but soon to be Bjornsborg, Ansteorra as of March 25th.

Ruh wrote:
> Despite rolling my eyes at all of you SCA advertising agents... I see your
> major point.  Canvas is much sturdier.  Heck we slept in canvas tents for
> months in Iraq.  I wonder if I could talk the husband into a Panther Regent's
> pavilion for hunting?
> "But dear, it's only $1100.00 and the deer will never notice it.  You know
> how nasty it gets out there and besides, we only have room for one tent in
> the garage/attic/under the bed."
> Seriously, you might have a point.  Perhaps we should just borrow a tent for
> the first couple of events until we can make sure he's going to enjoy the SCA
> and we can get a period one ordered.
> Oh, and thank you Stefan for the link to the section on tent survival.
> Edith _______________________________________________ Ansteorra mailing list 
> Ansteorra at lists.ansteorra.org 
> http://lists.ansteorra.org/listinfo.cgi/ansteorra-ansteorra.org

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