aluminet vs. silver tarp

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aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Odie » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:08 am

For the Monkey hut 15x20 (tarp size), which is a better? Aluminet (which shade factor) or silver tarp or another alternative
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby some seeing eye » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:12 am

A properly constructed, braced and anchored monkey hut can use a tarp. You may have more off-playa uses for a tarp the rest of the year.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Jackass » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:45 am

Neither, I vote for and use billboard vinyl. Better than either one of those!
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby TomServo » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:48 am

Just buy a fucking TARP!..or shade cloth.. It's cheaper and just as effective! Aluminet didn't impress me..
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby TT120 » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:09 am

I'm a cheap fucker. Aluminet is too expensive for me. I'm going to use a silver tarp and use the money I saved on a nice bottle of scotch.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby TomServo » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:16 am

TT120 wrote:I'm a cheap fucker. Aluminet is too expensive for me. I'm going to use a silver tarp and use the money I saved on a nice bottle of scotch.



Or gas money. Or ice money..whatever..your paying tons of cash for shit that kinda works. Just buy a tarp, cut some slits and you're fine.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:21 am

Bro...already been discussed and, as seen in referenced thread, no one agrees. Trust me, I tried to get a consensus and these damn people won't agree on anything!

Tarp- cheapest. Lovemonkey's original website recommends a tarp. Additional uses throughout year. So cheap you can bring two. BUT...I HEAR they trap heat, flap in the wind, can act as a sail, etc.

Shade cloth-reasonably priced. Seemed like a good option to me, but only saw maybe one person recommend it.

Aluminet-most expensive. Some people swear by it. Supposed to be easy to work with due to stretching ability and that it won't tear. Others say it gets electrically charged and collects excessive dust thus rendering it ineffective.

Personally, I think I'm going to buy the tarp, install it at home, and see how it does. Worst case I then have a $20 tarp I can use for other things. My guess is that I'll end up going with the Aluminet b/c MyDearFriend recommended it and she comes highly recommended by her campmates. Plus, I've seen pics of her setup and it looks pretty freaking nice.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:22 am

TomServo wrote:I'm a cheap fucker...I'm going to...cut some slits


Dirty dirty dirty! (took some liberal editing) :)
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby BBadger » Tue Feb 26, 2013 3:33 pm

Aluminet might be nice, but it's about 3-4x as expensive as the tarp and still only about 50% reflective in ideal conditions. The heavy duty tarps I used are 100% light blocking (though not the same as reflective) and nice and thick, and yet cost me about $40/tarp rather than $120 for the Aluminet of roughly the same size. For three huts, that can really add up.

The main benefit of Aluminet is whether you want air to flow through the monkeyhut on the shade sides. Airflow is nice, but there are already two open ends on your monkeyhut anyway, so it's not going to trap much heat. My monkeyhut's tarp was too long (12ft rather than 10ft) and partially blocked one end, but it still remained nice and cool all the time. The real key is shade, and then some airflow to waft away whatever heat might build up near the surface.

As for reducing air drag, you can always just box your huts in with vehicles to protect them. Placing multiple huts side-by side also helps. While the Lovemonkey guide doesn't specify it, it helps to put a guylines on the front and back just to ensure that the hut stays on the stakes on the side. After that there is little worry.

For noise, put earplugs in. Yeah, maybe there's some flapping, but there's noise everywhere at BM so between the pulsing bass from some camp nearby, to the laughing of campmates, you're going to hear noise. Whatever you decide, remember that for sleeping you can always block out the noise, but you can't block out the heat unless you have a proper structure.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby TomServo » Tue Feb 26, 2013 3:37 pm

Earthwalker wrote:
TomServo wrote:I'm a cheap fucker...I'm going to...cut some slits


Dirty dirty dirty! (took some liberal editing) :)

Tarps are Multi-purpose! :wink:
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby tamarakay » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:11 pm

We had three (well, maybe four really) types of shade cloth. On Dye WIth Dignity we had 75%shade cloth with a tiedyed parachute layered under and it was extremely comfortable all day long. And really trippy and pretty. Always had a nice crowd in there during the heat of the day.
In our personal space we had 70% shade cloth on 1/2 of it and 90% shade cloth on the other. NOTICEABLE difference on walking from one into the other. I had a few people who had aluminete walk through and say they were purchasing shade cloth for next year. I had a few people with aluminette say they would wouldn't use anything else. What was unanimous was that the people who used a tarp ALL said they would use the 90% shade cloth instead.

What are you using your shade for? Simply to sleep late and then be gone? A tarp will do nicely. Anything beyond that, I'd go with the shade cloth.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby FIGJAM » Tue Feb 26, 2013 9:14 pm

Tarps are nice when it rains. 8)
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby CornMan » Tue Feb 26, 2013 10:36 pm

A possible reason for the lack of consensus about silver tarps vs black shade mesh vs aluminet is that the mesh and aluminet come in differing sun blockage. 70% black shade mesh is going to outperform 50% aluminet while silver tarp's sun blockage is absolute. On our pub's main shade we use both six 10x10 silver tarps mounted flat and a 20x30 black shade mesh mounted to a peak above that. Keeps it nice and cool, and looks nice except for the lack of bright colors. The 10x10s are quiet in the wind, and the mesh is silent, and the air can pass between the 10x10s. This summer, I'll experiment with colored tarps mounted flat with black mesh over it and see if it's cool enough.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 11:24 am

I think this all boils down to: they all work. Just pick which one you like.

Because otherwise you will go crazy trying to decipher which one is best. It's sort of like the 7 stages of grief and loss, only applied to shade covers:

1-Shock and denial: WTF??? Why can't these damn people just tell me which one is best?? I don't believe their "oh, they're all great, just love the dust as it loves you as one of Mother Earth's creations"

2- Pain & Guilt: (*sobbing*) come onnnnnn!!! I can't take this!!!! Is it my fault? Did I ask the wrong question? I can't take this. What do I do. It just hurts me so bad ("down there".

3-Anger and bargaining: screw them and their stupid ePlaya. Damn hippie commies. What do they know anyway. "ok guys, if I promise to be a good ePlayan, will you PLEASE tell me which cover is best? I'll bring gifts to your meet and greet!"

4-Depression/rejection/loneliness: they must just not like me. They don't want me to know which shade cover is best. They want poor Earthwalker to suffer on the magical Playa. They hate me b/c I'm straight/white/from Cali/don't drink. I feel so alone on this board. I need a eHug.

5-The upward turn-well, I mean, I don't know. I guess it's like, whatever, you know?

6-Reconstruction and working through: Hmmm, ok, we'll figure this out, EW. I just need to do more research and some thinking on it. Let's look at my own personal experiences and see how I can be of service to others.

7-Acceptance and hope. You know, it's just as simple as: people like different things, and some are abject to spending that much money on aluminet, even though it may work perfectly well. So, do I want to spend tarp money, or aluminet money? Or vinyl billboard money? or maybe shade cloth money? (aaaah, starts to fade back to step 1)

And there you have it. This freaking shade cover topic makes me want to ram my head into the wall. Or dig a whole in the Playa, bury myself in it, with only a straw sticking up for air (would I be MOOP?). Seriously though, this question is driving me nuts. I like straightforward answers.

Answer me dammit!!!! Tell me which one to use!!!!!!

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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Savannah » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:15 pm

BBadger wrote:Aluminet might be nice, but it's about 3-4x as expensive as the tarp and still only about 50% reflective in ideal conditions. The heavy duty tarps I used are 100% light blocking (though not the same as reflective) and nice and thick, and yet cost me about $40/tarp rather than $120 for the Aluminet of roughly the same size. For three huts, that can really add up.

The main benefit of Aluminet is whether you want air to flow through the monkeyhut on the shade sides. Airflow is nice, but there are already two open ends on your monkeyhut anyway, so it's not going to trap much heat. My monkeyhut's tarp was too long (12ft rather than 10ft) and partially blocked one end, but it still remained nice and cool all the time. The real key is shade, and then some airflow to waft away whatever heat might build up near the surface.

As for reducing air drag, you can always just box your huts in with vehicles to protect them. Placing multiple huts side-by side also helps. While the Lovemonkey guide doesn't specify it, it helps to put a guylines on the front and back just to ensure that the hut stays on the stakes on the side. After that there is little worry.

For noise, put earplugs in. Yeah, maybe there's some flapping, but there's noise everywhere at BM so between the pulsing bass from some camp nearby, to the laughing of campmates, you're going to hear noise. Whatever you decide, remember that for sleeping you can always block out the noise, but you can't block out the heat unless you have a proper structure.


Agreed 100%. A silver tarp was not too hot in my experience, and provided 100% shade. And yes, a better rain shield, although we were not tested that way in '09. Airflow was entirely adequate (Note: we weren't building it over our tents, we were using it only as shade). It was a little noisy during hard wind, but not insanely so, as with a flimsy blue tarp. We had guy lines at each end, too.

Nothing against Aluminet--it clearly has high value, and I could see how someone would prefer it. It's just that no one need feel that a sturdy tarp is inadequate.

(Don't forget to light your guy lines & cushion your rebar, folks--they are bloodthirsty little tripping hazards).
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:22 pm

I constantly hear the thing about "cover your rebar" but it confuses me b/c all of my rebar on my MH is covered by PVC ribs. Are you talking rebar for the guy lines? I don't plan on guying. It's against my religion.

You think a hammer this size is good for pounding?

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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Savannah » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:38 pm

Earthwalker wrote:I constantly hear the thing about "cover your rebar" but it confuses me b/c all of my rebar on my MH is covered by PVC ribs. Are you talking rebar for the guy lines? I don't plan on guying. It's against my religion.


:lol:

Yeah. If you bring some rope anyway, then you have the option.

You think a hammer this size is good for pounding?

Image


SIR! I'm going to have to ask you to watch your language.

. . . Yeah, that hammer is probably fine. Aren't you going to do a test run anyway, though?
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 3:41 pm

Savannah wrote: SIR! I'm going to have to ask you to watch your language.

. . . Yeah, that hammer is probably fine. Aren't you going to do a test run anyway, though?


Haha, yeah, sorry about that. Went a little too far with that one :)

Yes ma'am, test run (on skeleton at least...meaning, sans tarp) is complete. BUTT...it's in my backyard which is grass, and wet ground at that due to excessive moisture recently. I MAY take her out to the actual desert (Imperial Valley) where I usually camp, and see how it fares out there. But if I do that I want to do it in June/July and not sure I'll be able to get anyone to go out there with me in the heat. But out there I'd have a better sense of how it will actually function at BRC.

I'll bring that little guy and if he's not up to it I'll see if a neighbor or campmate has a bigger one than me (not likely...uh hum, clears throat)
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby theCryptofishist » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:20 pm

If you're using rebar to anchor your tent (note: Bob contraindicated) then you cover the ends with commercial mushrooms, or tennis balls, or water bottles, or dead stuffed animal/dolls--depending on your proclivities.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Wed Feb 27, 2013 5:31 pm

Ok, that makes sense. Thank you!
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby BBadger » Thu Feb 28, 2013 4:02 am

Helps to light up the guyline too, so you don't run into it. I zip-tied some LED foam sticks to mine just to make them more noticeable.

You can also pound your stakes in flush with the playa, provided you can pull them out later, to avoid a tripping/stabbing hazard.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Zhust » Thu Feb 28, 2013 6:54 am

To chime in with "one more thing" ...

Some properties of Aluminet that are important to me:
  • extremely lightweight; about 1-2 pounds per 100 square feet
  • extremely low wind load, so you can fiddle with it yourself and don't have to hold on for dear life
  • made from HDPE rather than PVC (I despise PVC)
  • Despite its appearance, it doesn't shred or shed. (It stretches rather than rips, so it sags a lot if not supported.)

Oh, and Alternative Energy Zone has a blog post on Aluminet which should answer any more questions.

I have one big piece and a small piece. The big piece I got hemmed with a grommet strip. That was a mistake: the strip does not stretch but the Aluminet does, so it's hard to work with and adds weight and bulk. It turns out it's easy to make a rope loop through it (maybe stitching it 2-3 loops) to create an anchor. Bungee hooks work fine too, and because of the low wind load, the bungees don't even stretch much.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Earthwalker » Thu Feb 28, 2013 11:10 am

Thanks for that link and those comments.

And thanks Badger for all your posts including that link for LED lights. I will most DEFINITELY be ordering from them.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby BBadger » Thu Feb 28, 2013 12:12 pm

Earthwalker wrote:Thanks for that link and those comments.

And thanks Badger for all your posts including that link for LED lights. I will most DEFINITELY be ordering from them.


They usually provide a 10%-off coupon code as the event approaches, so make your order then. It usually ends up paying for the shipping for my order.
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Re: aluminet vs. silver tarp

Postby Savannah » Thu Feb 28, 2013 12:20 pm

BBadger wrote:Helps to light up the guyline too, so you don't run into it. I zip-tied some LED foam sticks to mine just to make them more noticeable.


Good idea!

I have used glow bracelets and duct tape. :lol:

I have also seen strings of lights draped on guy lines. I'm not sure whether they were battery-operated or solar . . .

You can also pound your stakes in flush with the playa, provided you can pull them out later, to avoid a tripping/stabbing hazard.


This works, but they can be miserable to get out. Some folks are really good at removing stakes/rebar pounded flush, but I can only manage to unearth stakes (and those with a wrecking bar).

I think a lot of people underestimate how hard it is to remove, because the DPW find rather a lot of rebar during their sweeps. :|
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