Pull-out capacity of tent stakes

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Pull-out capacity of tent stakes

Postby phil » Sat Sep 12, 2009 9:15 pm

Somebody actually did a study:
http://www.tentexperts.com/pdf/StakingGuide_LowRes.pdf

Executive summary:
1. Larger stake diameters give greater holding power*
2. Longer stakes give greater holding power*
3. Stakes that are vertical to the ground have greater holding power than stakes at an angle into the ground but perpendicular to the load
4. Ribbed stakes have no greater holding power then smooth stakes but fail sooner structurally.

The article tells how to judge the soil to determine stake size.

*Bigger, longer stakes compact the earth around them, giving greater holding power.
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Re: Pull-out capacity of tent stakes

Postby TomServo » Sat Sep 12, 2009 11:18 pm

phil wrote:Somebody actually did a study:
http://www.tentexperts.com/pdf/StakingGuide_LowRes.pdf

Executive summary:
1. Larger stake diameters give greater holding power*
2. Longer stakes give greater holding power*
3. Stakes that are vertical to the ground have greater holding power than stakes at an angle into the ground but perpendicular to the load
4. Ribbed stakes have no greater holding power then smooth stakes but fail sooner structurally.

The article tells how to judge the soil to determine stake size.

*Bigger, longer stakes compact the earth around them, giving greater holding power.


Interesting... I use t-posts which are heavy, but duct taped to a canopy leg don't budge. Last year, we used extra 1" conduit as stakes @ roller disco...duct taped in the same manner. They were easy to drive, and you could pull them by hand. We used a few on single, major load bearing posts, and held up pretty well.
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Postby Bob » Sat Sep 12, 2009 11:43 pm

Looks like they're talking about circus stakes for large commercial tents, not your average family tent or carport. Note that some of their calibrations are based on driving one-inch stakes w/ a 16-lb sledge hammer.
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Postby phil » Sun Sep 13, 2009 11:13 am

Looks like they're talking about circus stakes for large commercial tents, not your average family tent or carport.


Well, they're talking about stakes for rental pavillions. The stakes they use as their baseline are an inch in diameter, driven in 3 feet, but their formula allows for other sizes.

Do you think the information is different for us on the playa? Drive in vertically; bigger stakes give better holding capacity - is that wrong for us?
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Postby TomServo » Sun Sep 13, 2009 1:32 pm

phil wrote:
Looks like they're talking about circus stakes for large commercial tents, not your average family tent or carport.


Well, they're talking about stakes for rental pavillions. The stakes they use as their baseline are an inch in diameter, driven in 3 feet, but their formula allows for other sizes.

Do you think the information is different for us on the playa? Drive in vertically; bigger stakes give better holding capacity - is that wrong for us?


That's what I've found. People seem dead set on their ideas for stakes, and screw the candy cane stakes! Guess it just takes experiencing high winds to figure it out. "Everything important, that I learned about camping...I learned my first night at Burning Man." -Me 1999
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Postby dragonpilot » Sun Sep 13, 2009 2:56 pm

My first in '05 I used 1/2" x 2' rebar to secure the Coleman tent. Set up in exposed outer ring. Came back after one of the big blows to find the rebar holding just fine...but the tent was shredded! ha! Lesson: it's not always the quality of the stakes, but that of the tent!

Since then, upgraded the tent, but also position behind a suitable windbreak or camp closer to inner rings where there is better wind protection. YMMV.
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Postby phil » Sun Sep 13, 2009 3:59 pm

dragonpilot wrote:>SNIP<
Came back after one of the big blows to find the rebar holding just fine...but the tent was shredded! ha!
>SNIP<


Happened this year, too, to some poor soul:
Image
You can just see the pole poking up through that hole in the right of the photo.
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Postby shroom » Sun Sep 13, 2009 4:15 pm

Ok that pic scares me and my poor camping tent! As a newbie, could you give me so tent recommendations or point me to a thread that has them?

Thanks!
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Postby falk » Sun Sep 13, 2009 7:49 pm

shroom wrote:Ok that pic scares me and my poor camping tent! As a newbie, could you give me so tent recommendations or point me to a thread that has them?

Thanks!


There are other threads on the topic, but in a nutshell, any company -- such as Coleman -- that has sold out to Walmart will make cheap tents that can't stand up.

Mesh tents that can't be closed up are unacceptable if you don't like dust. All Coleman and REI tents are mesh nowadays.

I use a Sierra Equinox, and it does very well. Other four-season tents will probably also suffice.

Springbar is said to be excellent, but expensive and heavy. The Springbar knockoffs may be acceptable.
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Postby TomServo » Sun Sep 13, 2009 8:00 pm

They are heavy, but canopys...10x10 or 10x20 are the best. Rebar won't do shit for these though. You need t posts and duct tape. Trust me! No guylines needed
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Postby ygmir » Sun Sep 13, 2009 8:08 pm

I used my auger anchors, again this year......12x20 shade structure, one on each corner, one middle of long sides......it didn't even budge......same as last year...........

and,
no pounding or pulling stakes......just a 2' piece of water pipe for a handle, put it through the convenient "eye" on the top, and, lean on it and screw it down........by the time it's in a foot or so, it won't even turn......and, seems to hold a lot........

I orient them for a straight pull, in line with the shaft.

just my 2 cents.......
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Postby oneeyeddick » Sun Sep 13, 2009 8:32 pm

Thank you Ygmir, for figuring out the trick .

I used nothing but those in the past...I would pilot a hole with an auger bit, then fill the hole with water for extra depth and "cementing" them into place.Hammar handle and a push works great. They come out eaisier with more water also.
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Postby ygmir » Sun Sep 13, 2009 9:23 pm

I didn't think of the water......good idea. I'll use it next year......


you sir, are a genius.........
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Postby Artemis » Mon Sep 14, 2009 7:54 am

can you post a photo YG or OED? Am interested in what this looks like.
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Postby ygmir » Mon Sep 14, 2009 7:56 am

Artemis wrote:can you post a photo YG or OED? Am interested in what this looks like.


Image
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Postby Bob » Mon Sep 14, 2009 9:43 am

phil wrote:The stakes they use as their baseline are an inch in diameter, driven in 3 feet, but their formula allows for other sizes. Do you think the information is different for us on the playa? Drive in vertically; bigger stakes give better holding capacity - is that wrong for us?


Um, sure... if you're raising a circus tent with typical circus stakes under typical circus conditions... and honestly, there are *so* many things wrong with that pamphlet from both an engineering and practical standpoint I'm surprised it doesn't have two pages of legal disclaimers. Doesn't model soil mechanics properly, or clarify that circus stakes have *heads* to keep the rope from slipping off, or that the steel strength may be a huge factor if the stake diameter is much less than one inch, so it does little to illustrate anything helpful for your typical buhrnur with a bundle of 3/8" or 1/2" rebar other than suggest that the ribs don't make any difference. Also doesn't mention you'll probably need a Bobcat or something bigger to pull a one-inch stake driven three feet into the ground.
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Postby Bob » Mon Sep 14, 2009 10:36 am

...But I do more or less agree w/ their limiting the max capacity of a stake, eg at something around a ton for a one-inch stake driven three feet into "hard ground" (defined as requiring >10 blows per inch w/ a 16-lb sledge). YMMV.
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Postby Wulf » Tue Oct 13, 2009 6:43 am

For '09 I used 1/4" x 10" "Nail Pegs" for my 5' x 5' dome. Worked awesome for me and they're easy to pull out with just a hammer, but it is a small low tent. I saw that same tent crushing effect happen with both a tent and a screen porch in my camp. The solution we came up with was to stake out an extra guy wire from the collapsing point to the ground.
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Postby Sail Man » Tue Oct 13, 2009 4:13 pm

ygmir wrote:just my 2 cents.......



Heyyyyy, aren't those 2 cents supposed to be used to cover the eyes of your customers? You know, the dead people :P :lol:
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Postby ygmir » Tue Oct 13, 2009 7:25 pm

Sail Man wrote:
ygmir wrote:just my 2 cents.......



Heyyyyy, aren't those 2 cents supposed to be used to cover the eyes of your customers? You know, the dead people :P :lol:


I have many 2 centses...........
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Postby CapSmashy » Wed Oct 14, 2009 8:14 am

falk wrote:Springbar is said to be excellent, but expensive and heavy. The Springbar knockoffs may be acceptable.


The leading Springbar knockoffs are the Kodiaks (sold through Cabellas and few other outlets) and after comparisons made on Playa the past 3 years are pretty much built exactly the same in terms of build and material quality for around $100 less in comparable sizes.

Which makes them still expensive and heavy.

If taken care of, tents like Springbar and Kodiak will potentially last for an easy 20 years of regular use.
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Postby StevenGoodman » Thu Oct 29, 2009 3:07 pm

Kodiak and Springbar are very similar; mostly minor design differences.

CptSmashy has two Kodiak tents, and I have a Springbar. We camp in the same camp, and haven't seen much functional differences.

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Postby Homiesinheaven » Thu Oct 29, 2009 4:57 pm

shroom, dont worry, most tents are fine. dragonpilot is right, worry more about where your camp is located and having a windshield from another camp or a large vehicle (vans and RVs). that picture might have been the tent taking the wind head on.
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Postby justfred » Thu Oct 29, 2009 5:21 pm

It seems the biggest difference between Springbar and Kodiak is price, and the fact that Springbar is made in the US and Kodiak is made in China. If you care about one or the other of those.
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Postby Turnip » Fri Oct 30, 2009 6:59 am

I used 12inch long, half inch in diameter stakes.
Instead of worrying about how and what, I focused more on the where.

Every foot or so we pounded a stake in, and didn't have a single problem the entire week.
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Postby StevenGoodman » Sat Oct 31, 2009 5:24 am

justfred wrote:It seems the biggest difference between Springbar and Kodiak is price, and the fact that Springbar is made in the US and Kodiak is made in China. If you care about one or the other of those.


Kodiaks do have a few more "add on's". And they they have two doors, and Springbars have one. Which doesn't matter to me, but might for some people.

But, concerning stakes, I use the 12" military stakes, work great.

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Postby Rommel » Thu Apr 22, 2010 9:50 am

[quote="StevenGoodman"][quote="justfred"]It seems the biggest difference between Springbar and Kodiak is price, and the fact that Springbar is made in the US and Kodiak is made in China. If you care about one or the other of those.[/quote]

Kodiaks do have a few more "add on's". And they they have two doors, and Springbars have one. Which doesn't matter to me, but might for some people.

But, concerning stakes, I use the 12" military stakes, work great.

Martini Steve[/quote]

The real benefit of the military stakes are their surface area. Being V shaped, they hold excellent due to the resistance on the surface area.
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Postby theCryptofishist » Thu Apr 22, 2010 10:12 am

Rommel wrote: I have *never* lost a military stake.

Didn't dracula use to say that?
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Postby peachandpapa » Thu Apr 22, 2010 11:27 am

I'm with you Martini Steve & Rommel! The 12" military stakes rock plus you can find them on the cheap on Ebay. We use them on our 16x20 and 12x14 wall tents and on our 20x30 shade structure. We have never had a problem with them and it only takes a claw hammer to get them out.
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Postby Rommel » Thu Apr 22, 2010 12:13 pm

[quote="peachandpapa"]I'm with you Martini Steve & Rommel! The 12" military stakes rock plus you can find them on the cheap on Ebay. We use them on our 16x20 and 12x14 wall tents and on our 20x30 shade structure. We have never had a problem with them and it only takes a claw hammer to get them out.[/quote]

I can usually get new military stakes for $1.50 ea. You would spend more,
and get less with any other stake. And unlike the rebar, they don't require
safety measures the keep them safe, and because they're Aluminum they
don't rust.

Weight wise (just a guess) a 3' x .25" piece of rebar weighs as much as ten to 20 stakes... being conservative, probably many more. They also have two notches at the top for securing rope or camouflage edging.
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