Mesh on my tent

Ideas, advice, tips, and tricks regarding shelter, shade, tents, and camping. Yes, this includes RV's too.
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Anahtziry
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Mesh on my tent

Post by Anahtziry » Thu May 09, 2013 7:19 am

Hi everyone!!!!
I am making it to my very first Burn (and very first camping trip) this year...I have a Greatland 6 person dome tent thing that a friend kindly donated to me and I am planning on using it for my trip.

The tent has gigantic mesh windows and the only cover for them is the rainfly, which is detachable. Being that I have never camped or even seen another tent, I set it up in my backyard to become comfortable with it and get to know it. The issue is that I hear the dust will get right through the mesh.

The question is: Is this tent not good for the Playa? or can i duct tape the rainfly onto the windows or something of that sort?

Please bear with this novice...as clearly the other posts here are on some expert level stuff :)
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by trilobyte » Thu May 09, 2013 7:28 am

It's not a great tent for the playa, no. But it's what you've got. You may be able to get by with duct tape. I've never had to go that route myself, so I couldn't comment on the effectiveness (or how much of a hassle it will be to get that off). Having a shade structure over the tent would be ideal for a couple reasons - one because the heat of the sun baking a duct-taped tent will probably make the adhesive gooey and melty and less effective, and two because it'll be really hot during the day and it's recommended for everyone. A decent shade structure will also help reduce the amount of blowing dust that gets to your tent in the first place.

If you browse around the boards you may be able to find some posts on tents from mesh tent campers who've shared their experiences (good or bad) as well as tips and tricks. Hopefully a couple who've done it and survived will chime in here as well. Good luck!

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by TomServo » Thu May 09, 2013 7:41 am

Yes, the dust will get in, with no problem...even with the rainfly. A friend of mine got a little tired of dust dunes in his tent, and completely covered the mesh with duct tape. The tent was already under a silver tarp shade structure, so with regular ventilation of the tent (opening the tent flap) during Non dusty moments, the tent stayed relatively comfortable and somewhat dust free. I've thought about taping cotton sheets over the mesh, but have not yet tried. You'll be hard pressed to find a tent without any serious dust entry points, so keep the tent, alter it, and/or learn to love the dust. BUT, if at all possible, try and acquire a decent shade structure (NOT AN EZ-UP)!
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by whiskeywhore » Thu May 09, 2013 8:31 am

Last year, I was stuck with the same problem. I covered the mesh with a thrift store sheet, using safety pins to hold the sheet to the mesh. Put the sheet on the outside of the mesh, use a pin every few inches, right at the edge of the mesh. I had some dust leaks after I first put it on, but added pins where needed, and was relatively dust free. Your mileage may vary.

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by FIGJAM » Thu May 09, 2013 9:00 am

Anything but tape!

The sheet idea is very good.

If I was doing this, I would cut some sheet panels to match the size of the mesh, then STAPLE the sheet panels to the seam around the mesh.

It will be easy to remove if you want to return the tent to it's original meshness! 8)
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by theCryptofishist » Thu May 09, 2013 9:22 am

It's spring clamps, sillies, spring clamps.
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by FIGJAM » Thu May 09, 2013 9:23 am

Yes, but STAPLES are sooooooo creative! :lol:
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by theCryptofishist » Thu May 09, 2013 9:39 am

What about the holes in the tent?
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by FIGJAM » Thu May 09, 2013 9:43 am

Staples through the seam shouldn't make holes in the tent.
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Earthwalker
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Earthwalker » Thu May 09, 2013 10:18 am

If you browse this shelter and camping section there is a thread chock full of recommendations. I know because I had the same question. From what I recall:

Simply using the rain fly isn't enough. The dust will get under it

Most people seem to recommend a sheet or light comforter clamped with spring clamps

Be sure to put a sheet over your stuff when you leave for the day
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Savannah » Thu May 09, 2013 10:31 am

Duct tape did not work for me on mesh. (It fell off.)

For very small expanses with flaps over them, I like sewing the tent shut. For large expanses, an old fleece blanket, cut as needed (or fleece from a fabric store) and some spring clamps from a hardware store are indeed a great way to go. They are $1-2 each, get at least a lunchbag full. They have many, many uses.
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Chowski
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Chowski » Thu May 09, 2013 10:53 am

A couple thoughts - don't use a cotton sheet, as it won't stop the insistent dust. Try to find something a little more plastic or tarp-y. I did this last year with multiple fabrics thinking the colors would add whimsy, but one of them was too thin and dust got in.

Second, assuming this donated tent will be forever playafied, you might as well go all the way and hot glue the fabric over the openings. Start with the tent fully constructed and upright, lay the fabric upon the top edge of the mesh and hot glue, then, as you work down you can cut away the extra fabric to make a "custom" fit. As long as you glue it down really hard and use the right kind of fabric, it will keep the inside of the tent clean. True, you will sacrifice openable windows, but you shouldn't really be doing that anyway.

Good luck.

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Savannah
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Savannah » Thu May 09, 2013 11:08 am

Chowski, did you personally try the hot glue on a tent? . . . I ask, 'cause I love hot glue myself in the default world for all kinds of projects, but folks have reported that it sometimes softens back up on the playa, and have advised using particularly strong cold adhesives instead.

I genuinely don't know the answer myself (I have had cold glued items out on the playa that did well).

Maybe I will test a hot glued project or two this year. Carefully. :lol:
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by mdmf007 » Thu May 09, 2013 11:35 am

if your goal is to permanently seal the mesh for playa use, a can of that rubber paint they sell on tv works flawlessly, plugs those little holes up lickety split. Be sure this is the route you want to go though, its permanent.
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by 171/348 » Thu May 09, 2013 11:56 am

When the van that I had reserved (Budget) last year disappeared, I bought a little Coleman tent with lots of venty mesh under the rainfly. By Tuesday there was a good layer (eighth to quarter inch) of dust on everything in the tent. Fortunately, I was so tired by the time I went to bed I was asleep before my head hit the pillow... So I didn't see the giant dust cloud that filled the tent when the pillow hitting happened. I jest, I was awake and I saw it, but too tired to care and it continued nightly. After a few days I think I was tucking my nose into my shirt b4 laying down.
When there is a white-out, there won't be much difference from the inside of the tent to the outside... And then inside doesn't clear out as quickly when it passes.

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by maladroit » Thu May 09, 2013 12:20 pm

I threw a big, thin blanket over mine, under the rainfly. Had a large ceiling panel of mesh and two side panels. A couple of other panels were still exposed, so I tried to use tape...not only does tape (duct, gorilla, or gaffer) not stick to dust, but it doesn't stick to rainproofed nylon. Those panels did have mostly-closable flaps so dust was mainly limited to what I brought in. The blanket over the tent seemed to deaden sound a bit and hold in warmth during the cold nights.

Regular hot glue might not be a good idea, but I want to try the special fabric hot glue. If I can seal some extra ripstop nylon over the mesh panels, it would be really convenient.

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Anahtziry » Thu May 09, 2013 12:48 pm

thank you everyone for this very useful information!!
Someone also suggested one-sided Velcro stuck to the sheets and the edges of the windows...maybe this is an idea for you too!!
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by AntiM » Thu May 09, 2013 12:51 pm

theCryptofishist wrote:It's spring clamps, sillies, spring clamps.

We use spring clamps, have never had dust in the tent. Use as many or as few as you like. They handy for everything.

Why sew, glue, tape or staple when you can clamp clamp clamp?

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Savannah
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Savannah » Thu May 09, 2013 12:52 pm

AntiM wrote:
theCryptofishist wrote:It's spring clamps, sillies, spring clamps.

We use spring clamps, have never had dust in the tent. Use as many or as few as you like. They handy for everything.

Why sew, glue, tape or staple when you can clamp clamp clamp?
And it's reversible!
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Chowski
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Chowski » Thu May 09, 2013 1:32 pm

Savannah wrote:Chowski, did you personally try the hot glue on a tent? . . . I ask, 'cause I love hot glue myself in the default world for all kinds of projects, but folks have reported that it sometimes softens back up on the playa, and have advised using particularly strong cold adhesives instead.

I genuinely don't know the answer myself (I have had cold glued items out on the playa that did well).

Maybe I will test a hot glued project or two this year. Carefully. :lol:
Yeah, my tent stayed glued just fine. In fact. last weekend, we pulled it out in prep of an upcomign camping trip and it is still firmly glued on. I'd never heard about hot glue being a problem. Maybe not knowuing it could be allowed mine to hang on for dear life.

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Savannah » Thu May 09, 2013 1:49 pm

Chowski wrote:
Savannah wrote:Chowski, did you personally try the hot glue on a tent? . . . I ask, 'cause I love hot glue myself in the default world for all kinds of projects, but folks have reported that it sometimes softens back up on the playa, and have advised using particularly strong cold adhesives instead.

I genuinely don't know the answer myself (I have had cold glued items out on the playa that did well).

Maybe I will test a hot glued project or two this year. Carefully. :lol:
Yeah, my tent stayed glued just fine. In fact. last weekend, we pulled it out in prep of an upcomign camping trip and it is still firmly glued on. I'd never heard about hot glue being a problem. Maybe not knowuing it could be allowed mine to hang on for dear life.
Hahaha! Like not having balance problems until you pay attention to how high up you are. Funny. :lol:

Well, I'm glad it's not a guaranteed problem.
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by dragonpilot » Thu May 09, 2013 4:34 pm

Cut sections of blanket material to fit the mesh sections. Get some heavy-duty thread and needles and go to work stitching the blanket sections to the outside of the mesh. It doesn't have to be done at one sitting...spread the work out over several days.

The blanket fabric does a good job of trapping the dust. Nothing will eliminate the dust, but this does an amazing job. Keep the tent zipped up except when you're entering or leaving. An old sheet is used to cover the bedding and gear while you're out and about.

When you get back home a simple 1:10 solution of vinegar and water spritzed all over the tent and thoroughly rinsed with fresh water will do an awesome job of cleaning it up...getting it ready for next year!
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Earthwalker » Thu May 09, 2013 7:02 pm

I would think that a fleece over the tent would make it into even more of an oven during the day

Is sleeping in the tent during the day, even under a monkey hut, just basically out of the question?
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by TomServo » Fri May 10, 2013 6:00 am

Earthwalker wrote:Is sleeping in the tent during the day, even under a monkey hut, just basically out of the question?
Depends on whats covering the monkey hut or canopy. Silver tarp - No, Blue tarp - maybe, Aluminet - Yes
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by AntiM » Fri May 10, 2013 6:51 am

Earthwalker wrote:I would think that a fleece over the tent would make it into even more of an oven during the day

Is sleeping in the tent during the day, even under a monkey hut, just basically out of the question?
We use a large comforter. Van Gogh's starry night, actually. No, it does not make our tent hotter, it insulates it from heat and cold. We're also under a carport for shade.

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by gibson_ » Fri May 10, 2013 9:58 am

OP! You really *really* need to make a shade structure of some kind to put that tent underneath of.

If you don't, it's going to be unbearably hot in there as soon as the sun comes up.

Unless you're keeping a farmer's schedule while at BRC, this will be a thing you hate.

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Earthwalker » Fri May 10, 2013 10:15 am

TomServo wrote:
Earthwalker wrote:Is sleeping in the tent during the day, even under a monkey hut, just basically out of the question?
Depends on whats covering the monkey hut or canopy. Silver tarp - No, Blue tarp - maybe, Aluminet - Yes
Hmm, another ringing endorsement for aluminet!! I will be ordering mine shortly (just want to double and triple confirm that I'm going to build the dimensions I have in mind)

:coffee:
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by Dr. Dust » Fri May 10, 2013 10:27 am

The trick is to dust-proof your belongings - not your tent. Put everything in heavy-duty reusable ziplock bags, and then put them in boxes or backpacks or what have you. I have a six-person mesh tent that I've used at BRC twice now. It gets pretty dusty in there but I just sleep wearing a soft bandana over my face so I don't inhale the dust while I'm sleeping. Also remember to bring...umm... massage oil, in preparation for those really dusty nights.

I think safety-pinning a sheet over the mesh is a great idea, but then you miss out on having a nice breeze blowing through your tent. I used camo netting draped off my shade structure, with a second camo net draped over my tent and reflective emergency blankets safety pinned up against the east-facing tent wall to reflect the morning sunlight. Worked perfectly!!

Also - I discourage duct tape because of the nasty residue when you pull it off. Check out gaffers tape - it's a little more expensive but it leaves hardly any residue, even after melting in the desert sun!

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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by MyDearFriend » Fri May 10, 2013 12:54 pm

I endorse the AntiM solution (when would you NOT listen to this goddess? :? seriously) use a blanket clamped over your tent. I use light weight fleece throws because I travel from the East Coast, I put shark-bite grommets on them and bungee them down. They work great at keeping dust out, and insulating the tent.

Another good dust tip: take off your shoes & socks before you enter your tent, and wipe your feet on a rug or folded towel first.
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Re: Mesh on my tent

Post by TomServo » Fri May 10, 2013 1:04 pm

Earthwalker wrote:
TomServo wrote:
Earthwalker wrote:Is sleeping in the tent during the day, even under a monkey hut, just basically out of the question?
Depends on whats covering the monkey hut or canopy. Silver tarp - No, Blue tarp - maybe, Aluminet - Yes
Hmm, another ringing endorsement for aluminet!! I will be ordering mine shortly (just want to double and triple confirm that I'm going to build the dimensions I have in mind)

:coffee:
It looked confusing, when I edited that statement, but I was answering a question. I am not a supporter of aluminet. Sorry for the confusion. After 12 burns, I stand by silver tarp 200%. Aluminet only makes the sun tolerable. I prefer total sun block.
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