I purchased a Springbar Vagabond 7 almost exactly a year ago. I bought it mainly for my annual work season for DPW, where I live about four weeks on the playa each year. I managed to use it two other times under normal (forested) conditions last year as well, but only a few days each time. I'm currently inside my tent in Black Rock, just seven days into the current work season.
This week my tent began doing something I'm unaccustomed to, it generally started making a lot of noise. I noticed it slightly at first, as the fabric holding the tension in the edges of the ceiling must be dry, but now it sounds as if an ancient, creaky, wooden door is being continuously swung open and closed during even moderate gusts of wind, and especially durring dust storms.
I suspect the material has become dry and the repeated friction is rubbing it down, specifically where the metal rods hold much of the tension.
What can I do to reduce this wear, or at least the noise? I realize I am putting the tent under generally uncommon stress due to my environment, but I'm quite sure it wasn't producing any sound last year and am unsure if there's anything regarding maintenance or a material application to keep the crazy squeaking down. Should I attempt to raise the side bars higher, reducing all potential slack? There isn't much, and it's been quite stormy this year. I thought making the tent over-taught would cause more unnecessary stress on it. I still haven't set it up differently from the previous year
Could I sleeve the metal rods with a different material before raising the tent somehow? I've been considering just about anything, it's been quite windy this year already and it making a great deal of noise. I also want to address it if it means the tent is actually wearing down faster than it should.