EZ Up Canopies

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EZ Up Canopies

Postby maryanimal » Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:17 pm

has anyone here used the EZ Up type of canopies? what were your experiences with them? Or can you guide me to a thread about these types of canopies?

mucho appreciado!
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Rice » Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:34 pm

maryanimal wrote:has anyone here used the EZ Up type of canopies? what were your experiences with them? Or can you guide me to a thread about these types of canopies?

mucho appreciado!

Last year was probably the only one, weather wise, where an Ez up was ok.

Think very very strong wind gusts. If it is staked down properly it can still fail. I have had a couple die in winds 1/3 of what I have seen on the playa. When they fail, it is usually dramatic. Think posts snapping in half and the sharp edges flailing in the wind. It really hurts to be in one when it fails!

a eplaya discussion on EZ-UPs: http://eplaya.burningman.com/viewtopic.php?t=35469

I much prefer the Car Port style shade structures (like the "Costco Car Ports"), Sturdy 1 1/4 inch poles. As long as these beasts are tied down correctly they will withstand almost anything. Unfortunately these things also weigh a fair bit. Solid design = decent weight...
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby FIGJAM » Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:35 pm

In a big wind it seems EZ up also means EZ down, and bent, and broken, and can't fold up to remove from the playa once it's broke.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Rice » Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:56 pm

FIGJAM wrote:In a big wind it seems EZ up also means EZ down, and bent, and broken, and can't fold up to remove from the playa once it's broke.

I had one EZ-UP at Freezer Burn in Alberta, CA a few years ago. It survived a few days and then at night (when I was standing in it) there was a decentish wind gust (say 30Km) and the top snapped in half. It collapsed onto me, then ballooned up and tried to shred my tent. Since the roof supports snapped, I had sharp pole parts flailing around with each wind gust. My entire camp would have been destroyed if I was not standing right there. I had the thing staked out like I was on the playa. Those pegs stayed attached. I ended up grabbing a couple ratchet straps and some reebar and ratcheting the dam thing away from my tent. I had to cut long gashes in fabric to stop it from blowing around, and ended up cutting it off the frame. (the chunks of fabric ended up in my trunk)... The next morning I was amazed that it folded up like nothing was wrong. I put the dam thing into its carry bag and threw the thing away when I got home. Never again!


The entire design of a EZ-UP is for very light breezes not wind gusts. 1/4 inch thick poles and supports with plastic joints and weak rivets are not a good plan for the playa.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Stickygreen » Mon Jun 25, 2012 9:59 pm

Easy Up's are OK, if you replace the cover with something that allows air to flow thru, like camo net. I've had an Easy up with a 10'x10' section of camp net for 4 years on the playa, it's still going.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Bob » Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:10 pm

When you search, put it in quotes -- "easy-up".

Too many moving parts. They can work, but if one part gets bent or breaks, it's trash. And by itself it's kind of useless except at noon because the danged sun keeps moving around for 13 hours between sunrise and sunset.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby jkisha » Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:13 pm

Yup, we don't even allow them in our camp.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby RevDusty » Mon Jun 25, 2012 10:49 pm

Used one in 2010. I guyed each corner with two cords at 90 degree angles. I kept the cords tight and periodically checked on them. Used rebar to secure to the ground (I think I had to drill the holes in the base to a slightly bigger diameter so that the rebar would fit).

The thing never budged. It was solid. I got some shade cloth to cover up a side and attached that with bungee cords. That kept me and my cooler cool.

I suppose in really strong winds, it would shred, but I think the guys ropes really did the trick. Having two at each corner was crucial too.

I plan on bringing it out again this year.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby SnowBlind » Tue Jun 26, 2012 12:09 am

Comments on easy ups in this recent thread: http://eplaya.burningman.com/viewtopic.php?f=277&t=55490

Edit: Attaching the quote from the other thread

SnowBlind wrote:
weesinator35 wrote:Hi. I am looking for a simple, easy to put up shelter to protect myself from the heat and wind. I know about Yurts and Monkey Huts, but does anybody know about other simpler, effective ways to get shelter. Do EZ ups work out there?


By themselves EZups are not sturdy enough to survive high winds. I've seen several destroyed on the playa. Some people have made it work by attaching it to something else (RV, Camper, stuff like that), but it's iffy.

Further more, we've had structures that we weren't sure about over the years, and I hate being away from camp when the wind picks up and constantly worrying what's happening to my home. Much nicer to be confident that it's there when you come back.

One popular option is the Costco carport, which is sturdier than other carports and if staked down right will be very reliable out there. It's not as easy to put up as an EZup, but it doesn't take too long either. I've set one up alone, which is annoying but doable. With two or three people it goes up fairly quickly.

(If you want one, get it soon. They usually get them in the spring and they do sell out at some point).
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby trilobyte » Tue Jun 26, 2012 1:20 am

Exactly what figjam said, EZ up, EZ down.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Token » Tue Jun 26, 2012 8:41 am

Better question is: What is the impact on your experience if it mangles and bends into a giant spider-like mess on day one?

Many use them, many break. I don't consider them a playa-worthy shelter.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby mudpuppy000 » Tue Jun 26, 2012 9:57 am

My first year (2009) I had an e-z up and it lasted about half a day before getting bent to hell. That was just with a steady "breeze" no big gusts. My neighbors had one that lasted the whole event but it looked like it was much higher quality, and had guy lines. Like others have said, it's pretty worthless for shade except when the sun is directly overhead.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Trishntek » Tue Jun 26, 2012 10:14 am

While camping with a group this weekend, IN A FOREST, a gust of wind came up and one corner of a friends EZUP FOLDED (i.e. broke the leg)! Just could not hold the force of even a moderate gust. Out of about a dozen tents and structures in the camp, it was the ONLY thing that did not hold up.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby pink » Wed Jun 27, 2012 3:02 pm

How well one holds up depends on what type you buy. The Wally World or K-mart bargains are cheap and won't last, but the heavy-duty pricey ones marketed to vendors are much sturdier-metal rather than plastic joints, density of the metal, etc. but IMHO, if you're going to spend that kind of money, go for the carport.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby daft » Wed Jun 27, 2012 7:44 pm

I like your avatar. Last year was a light wind year, and yea, you have to guy them down no matter, two lines on each corner. But as they collapse and have those accordian joints and a wind load with the little side walls let alone the top, they will break unless you are there to remove the canopy when the wind gets going. Wonder if you can slit semi circles in the canopy to offset the windload. Go to a swap meet and buy the corners and bottoms you use with 3/4 emt pipe. If you use a sunshade mesh fab and make your own rivets it will stay up in a good one, but the blue coated tarp with rivets can just lift the whole thing away in a windstorm. I know from experience.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby RevDusty » Wed Jun 27, 2012 7:53 pm

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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby dragonpilot » Thu Jun 28, 2012 12:00 pm

Take a look at the Kelty Sunshade...comes in small, medium, and large...lots of guy points and stake down points...and reasonably priced.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby bluesbob » Thu Jun 28, 2012 12:15 pm

I use an EZ UP, but I also don't raise it up all the way. I have to duck down to get inside, but because I'm only 5'9" I have plenty of room to stand once I'm in there. Not raising it up means a lower profile and less problems with the wind. Plus I always seem to have windbreaks, such as vehicles and other camps.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby maryanimal » Thu Jun 28, 2012 8:45 pm

Thanks for all the info everyone! Is there anyway I can fortify the crisscrossing stuff in the top?
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby daft » Thu Jun 28, 2012 8:49 pm

Nope its the way it comes. Swap meet time.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby maryanimal » Thu Jun 28, 2012 9:00 pm

Damn. I have a 12'x10' tent and I want to put in under something and put tarps around it. I got way too dusty last year, but I'm not complaining...much! :wink:
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby mudpuppy000 » Thu Jun 28, 2012 9:24 pm

maryanimal wrote:Damn. I have a 12'x10' tent and I want to put in under something and put tarps around it. I got way too dusty last year, but I'm not complaining...much! :wink:


Costco carport!
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby TomServo » Thu Jun 28, 2012 9:27 pm

OK...so E-Z UP wouldn't be my first choice...but, assuming that's all I had or had the room for... I came up with this idea to help save the accordion frame up top. It can be partially cemented and partially duct taped, so it will fit in a smaller vehicle. The whole thing, broken down would probably take up as much space as another E-Z UP, but it would be super light. The picture only shows one side...complete, it would make a square that would fit just inside the upper frame of the canopy. It would be zip tied to the upper legs and the accordion shit.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby maryanimal » Thu Jun 28, 2012 11:52 pm

Look like a winner!
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Sail Man » Fri Jun 29, 2012 12:25 am

Survived 2 years on the playa, and 1 is still standing in my back yard after a couple winters

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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby firepoet » Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:31 pm

I have lost 2 to the wind. If you are totally intent on using one I would suggest the following: inside the tent are 8 hinges (look like an "x' on its side)... get 12" spikes and duct tape them across the hinges (which are the weakest part of the structure. Put in re-bar parallel to each pole and use plastic ties to secure to each other. From the top corners run rope to staked re-bar. place strips of duct tape on the inside of the cover and on the outside in the exact same location... just in case you have to relieve pressure by cutting vents... duct tape will keep cuts from spreading. Making it work is way to much work for me. Good luck.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby caffeineslinger » Mon Jul 16, 2012 9:44 pm

I've had great success using an EZ up canopy with camo netting to keep my tent in the shade during the afternoon sun. Much cooler. They don't last long after a couple of years though and will have to be replaced.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Hoolie » Tue Jul 17, 2012 9:09 pm

I have seen many fail. That said, I have one that has lasted four burns, and I still occasionally use it on regular camping trips. The key is reinforcement.

* Got 4 lengths of PVC pipe cut to the same length as the EZup legs, and used them as sleeves. This prevented the legs from bending/breaking.
* Slid each leg over a rebar stake, which kept it in it's place.
* My EZup has the advantage of guyout points at each corner of the roof. I tied guylines to each, ran them down to the ground at 45 degree angle and tied them off to four more rebar stakes. This keeps the roof on and further stabilizes and anchors the structure.
* I used shade net for walls, which let the wind filter through.

The structure was pretty solid with this setup. Nevertheless, I have never used it as a primary structure, only as an annex or as a loaner to campmates.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby AntiM » Tue Jul 17, 2012 9:45 pm

Just back from our regional... saw many EZ ups fail, even those well guyed became twisted up. Ours survived because it was just a frame, no canopy, loose under a structure. When it went turtle, it didn't smash up, but it is an old heavy one. The entire Center CAmp roof saucer came down with in a foot of it! One structure (maybe a small dome, but still...) flew into a windshield. I know one person was slightly injured by an errant EZup taking flight. Genius caught one a few feet from his tent, although it had been left un-secured because of the mild first day. We collected one for scrap metal. Almost everyone with an EZup needed to remove the canopies or covers. This was during a storm with a ton of rain and winds, gusts of 44 MPH, Utah salt marsh near Grantsville.

Heck, we had to throw extra guy ropes on our carport during the storm in the pouring rain.
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Re: EZ Up Canopies

Postby Bob » Tue Jul 17, 2012 10:22 pm

Awesome. JPEGs?
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