Sealing up mesh panels/roof in a tent.

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Sealing up mesh panels/roof in a tent.

Postby dronf » Tue Aug 21, 2007 2:40 pm

Every year i sweep a bunch of dust out of my tent, but this year it sounds like i may need to take more drastic action. I am considering sealing up the mesh roof of my tent(which is under a fly).

I realize that this may make the tent hotter in the day, but i don't want to have to dig past 6 inches of dust to find my pillow each night.

I'm thinking of digging up some nylon fabric and hot glue gunning it over the mesh panels. Has anyone ever done this, and if so, how were the results? Do you have any tips you could share?

thanks!
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Postby Burp! » Tue Aug 21, 2007 3:00 pm

One word: Ziploc Bags
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Postby dronf » Tue Aug 21, 2007 3:05 pm

Everything will already be in ziplock bags, inside of larger ziplock bags. I'm just trying to avoid the sepia tone look of everything covered in 2 inches of dust.
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Postby Burp! » Tue Aug 21, 2007 3:18 pm

Tent sized ziploc bags is what I meant, but I had already went over my one word limit. sorry
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Postby honeyfire » Tue Aug 21, 2007 3:52 pm

I misdoubt me that hot glue would work any too well on tent fabric.
I'd try duct tape, myself.
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Duct tape + playa = pretty silver ribbon

Postby Jordancc » Tue Aug 21, 2007 4:54 pm

Nope - duct tape won't stick to a tent that has ANY dust on it. Maybe if you did it before arriving. . .but I doubt it would stay and if it didn't - no back up.

I'm going to try the glue gun thing myself soon. If that doesn't work it's off to the sewing machine <<shudder>>.
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Postby Dork » Tue Aug 21, 2007 5:11 pm

The hot glue gun might work great at home, then melt on the playa. I'd use binder clips, or hand sew them. With the clips you have the option of removing them when you want some airflow during the day.
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Postby Cabana Springs » Tue Aug 21, 2007 5:25 pm

We had this exact problem - Coleman 8 man tent Mesh Area 55"x99"

We cut and sewed a tight woven thin fabric to 6 inches bigger than the mesh. Then we used seam tape. Get it at the fabric store. It is two sided sticky tape placed between the fabric and the tent and Iron but not too hot. Then we taped strong duct tape over the edge of the fabric to the tent. We started with an old dusty tent. We washed it with a mild soap solution prior to ironing and taping.

It has held for two years now and has made our burn much more dust free and enjoyable. BTW - we do not sleep in this tent as it does get hot with minimal ventilation.
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Postby dronf » Wed Aug 22, 2007 8:23 am

Ha! Cabana Springs, that is the same tent i'm talking about. The 17x9 coleman weathermaster. Your solution sounds perfect.

I'm running out of time at this point, and don't really have any sewing materials, so I think i'm gonna do this quick and dirty. I got a few rolls of gorilla tape(basically super duct tape) and will attempt to just tape over the whole damn mesh. This tent is pretty beat up(one of the stake straps tore clean off two years back) and i will probably replace it next year anyways.
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Postby Valkyrie » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:33 am

I think I'll just take a needle and heavy thread with me, along with some sort of mat'l to patch with. I'm not keen on doing anything too permanent to the tent and I'm hoping a light tack-down should be good without being something that's difficult to remove.

Besides, who has time for even more stuff to do before they get there?

I'm still trying to figure out how this sea of ants made it into my 3rd floor apartment
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Postby AntiM » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:36 am

Spring clamps and a comforter. This year we're doing two layers, light sheet underneath, heavy comforter over the top. Never do use the rainfly.
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Postby dronf » Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:05 am

My concern is the wind this year. From all the reports i've read it sounds pretty vicious. Anything that doesn't have a tight seal might get torn right off. Also, if i have my mesh sealed, i can leave the fly off, so the wind can't yank on it.
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Postby Burp! » Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:20 am

I highly recommend that you don't leave the fly off, your only concern should not be wind. Don't forget about rain. If anyone remembers 2000, it rained just about every day. Be prepared for all elements. A a tent with a fly that goes almost to the ground is preferred. alot of the cheaper tents have a fly that is just about useless. If you are sure that without a fly your tent is water proof then go for it, but in most cases water will leak in from the seams.

T
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Postby dronf » Wed Aug 22, 2007 10:30 am

If I end up sealing the mesh i'll take the fly off only when it gets really windy. On my particular tent the fly is attached to the poles, and when it gets windy it really yanks around the whole structure and sometimes pulls up stakes. My idea is that without a fly the wind will flow over the tent easier.

However, if it gets rainy the fly is going back on for sure :D
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Postby AntiM » Wed Aug 22, 2007 11:14 am

Rain? that's what the carport is for.
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Postby Cabana Springs » Wed Aug 22, 2007 1:56 pm

IMHO - stitching won't keep the dust out and there is little point to trying to keep "some" of the dust out. It's all or nothing - baby.

The rainfly on my tent is useless as tits on a bore pig escpecially in the rain. (I'm originally from Oregon) The poles on the coleman are for shit and broke three years ago in a heavy wind at BM. I replaced them with rebar and conduit and use a brown tarp for a rainfly attached to the poles.
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Postby Valkyrie » Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:11 pm

It's possible to keep all the dust out? I didn't think that was a reasonable expectation. Figured it'd be at least as good as the binder clip idea someone else proffered.
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Postby phil » Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:12 pm

> It's possible to keep all the dust out?

No
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Postby DoctorIknow » Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:20 pm

Why not just paint the open mesh? A few hits with a roller should do it.

Seeing as how the winds could rip your tent up anyway, you've already implicitly understood that it's disposable, so don't even think of "oh, now I can't use it except on the playa" type rationalization... LOL
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Postby Valkyrie » Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:39 pm

I'm thinking more along the lines of "Oh, what happens if it gets stifling hot and I want to rip that crap off". I hate sticky messes unless...
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Postby stew » Wed Aug 22, 2007 2:54 pm

Last year, I was still thinking about the same after having all the dust come in through the meshes of my tent. But after this year's Nowhere (Euroburn) which was equally windy and dusty, I have decided to not bother trying and accept the dust. It's inevitable. It will get in your tent, no matter what you try. I'll just bring a few large trashbags to put everything in them when I'm not using it.

Black Rock Desert or: how I learned to stop worrying and love the dust.
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Postby DoctorIknow » Wed Aug 22, 2007 3:04 pm

[quote="Valkyrie"]I'm thinking more along the lines of "Oh, what happens if it gets stifling hot and I want to rip that crap off". [/quote]

An unshaded tent will become an oven by 8:30am anymorning the sun is unobsucred. The slight heat escape from overhead mesh won't do much except extend that time to 9am.
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Postby Valkyrie » Wed Aug 22, 2007 3:06 pm

Well, I still have my rainfly and the shade structure... whatever that turns out to look like.
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Postby Token » Wed Aug 22, 2007 3:28 pm

Go get some "batting" from your favorite yarn and craft store like Joanne's Fabrics or Michael's. it costs ~ a buck a yard. Sometimes they sell it by the pound as well. Real cheap.

This is synthetic fluffy fibers used for stuffing pillows n such, filling comforters etc. Real cheap, and makes a great filter when compressed in the space between the rain fly and tent roof.

Best thing is, you don't need to glue, sew, tape or nothing. just jam it in there tight.

Next, cover the inside of your tent with a cheap king size bet sheet. Before you turn in for the night/morning, take out the sheet and shake out the dust, fold and bring back into the tent.

Sweet dreams,

T
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Postby patnmarilyn » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:52 pm

Ok..... here is what we have done for years, and it worked even in high winds. We cut plastic the same size as the mesh, and then used the best packing tape we could find to tape it to the tent. We would overlap several rows of the tape to increase the tape down profile on the tent. Then we took several extra towels and draped them over the plastic. We used clothes pins or aything that will clasp the towels to the tent rods running in between the mesh triangles. We then put the rainfly over all of this. It worked even in the extreme high wind on Tue/Wed. of 2004 ! You have to keep checking the tape to make sure it holds, and add new if it doesn't. Ours always held for the 5 days we always stay at BM. We do not use Duct tape because it melts (sort of) in heat, and gets awfully sticky gooey bad. Somewhere i read that someone even tapes down his rainfly, but i can't quite picture that working. If it does, it is yet another added idea to the above method.
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Postby patnmarilyn » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:58 pm

Oh forgot to mention, that in the morning we would just have to open up all the windows by 8 or 9am to keep the heat from building up too much before we actually got up. After we are up, then we zip everything up and keep it tight so that dust stays out day and night. This has kept dust out of our tent quite well. Also, should mention that the towels are there to keep the plastic from taking the brunt of the winds when the tents are continuously shaken in the higher wind/dust storms. The towels put weight on the plastic , and seem to keep them from looseing up the tape that is holding them down. Hope this all helps.
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Postby Jiva » Thu Aug 23, 2007 1:17 pm

If one had a source of itty bitty Nd magnets, one might use them to hold fabric/plastic over mesh panels. They'd have to be small to not make the tent sag too much.
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Postby plowman » Thu Aug 23, 2007 9:32 pm

Dust is a fact of life on the playa, even when it rains it's dusty.
No matter how much you try your going to be dusted and dusty
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Postby DoriumLux » Thu Aug 23, 2007 11:53 pm

[quote="plowman"]Dust is a fact of life on the playa, even when it rains it's dusty.
No matter how much you try your going to be dusted and dusty[/quote]

That IS true and I think pretty much anyone expects that. However, minimizing dust in sleeping quarters is important in my case because my significant other has terrible sinus issues and is prone to bloody noses & such.

Thanks everyone for the great ideas. I was having the dilemma today with the open mesh, but I will definitely try using batting. Great idea! :roll:
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