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Thread: Show Tents

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Central Illinois
    Posts
    936

    Show Tents

    Didn't know where else to put this so here goes.

    I have an EZ -UP tent. I did not pay 500.00 for it. That model has a 5 year warranty.

    I use the tent 21 days a year and an average of 6 hours per day. When it gets wet, I take it home, open it in the garage to dry.

    This year, half way through the season, in one of the few rains at a show, the canvas starts leaking. I got out the spray sealer and gave it a GOOD coating, Making sure to get the places where the canvas touched the structure.

    At last weekends three day show I left the tent up overnight. We had a heavy dew. As I raised the tent to full height, I started getting wet. It looked like dew on the inside of the tent. But, no........... it was leaking like a sieve. You can see pin holes all over the canvas.


    The 200.00 dollar version only carries a two year warranty. This is not quite four years old. EZ up basically told me tough luck and I could buy a new canvas for about 200.00.

    I know I'm ranting here, but what are friends for? I believe that a well cared for canvas should last a lot longer!

    Bruce

    ps: I'm looking for a new tent and it WON't say EZ UP on it!
    Bruce Shiverdecker - Retired Starving Artist ( No longer a Part timer at Woodcraft, Peoria, Il.)

    "The great thing about turning is that all you have to do is remove what's not needed and you have something beautiful. Nature does the hard part!"

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Tokyo Japan
    Posts
    15,807
    That sucks, and I understand what you are saying. My parents have an old army tent, steel ridge poll on the inside, steel polls on the outside at six points, the thing is treated canvas, they bought it used when I was a kid, so that old tent has to be at least 40 or 50 years old, it is HEAVY, but it still works. Last year when we went to Canada for their 50th anniversary party, they put the tent up in the back yard for the kids to sleep in, kind of an over flow, and yes, it rained (lightly) one night, but no one got wet

    As you have the old leaking top, maybe you should head to a good canvas and awning shop and have them make you a replacement out of good quality material that will not leak anytime soon. It might cost you more, but I bet you would be a lot happier with it long term

    You know the $200 unit will be crap in two years, so if the frame on the $500 leaky unit is still fine, then why not replace the leaky bit with something that will NOT leak

    Just at thought!
    The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.
    William Arthur Ward

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    RETIRED(!) in Austintown, Ohio
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    5,321
    Quote Originally Posted by Stuart Ablett View Post
    ...As you have the old leaking top, maybe you should head to a good canvas and awning shop and have them make you a replacement out of good quality material that will not leak anytime soon. It might cost you more, but I bet you would be a lot happier with it long term...
    What Stu said. A good boat canvas shop chan use your old cover as a pattern and make you something that'll last - in the weather 24/7/365 - for many years.

    I had two made that lasted over five years in the SoCal sun and (infrequent) rain for five years, and still looked like they had a few years left when I sold them.
    Jim D.
    Adapt, Improvise, Overcome!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    GTA Ontario Canada
    Posts
    12,256
    Hi Bruce sorry to hear about the tent. I would agree with you on the expectation of more than 2 years given your use. I agree with Stu, I have had several Canvas tents and they have lasted well of 20 years. Something is up with that canvas.

    Anyhow just another thought on the make your own version. I have a very large fold out umbrella that has seen better days. Frame and mechanism are made of aluminum and good plastic. So loml being a handy person at the sewing machine is going to remake the umbrella this winter. I went to the local discount material store and had a look there for Canvas and whilst they had it there was also another lighter waterproof material available. Memory is not working well right now so cannot remember the price but it was so low relative to our size and need for the umbrella that my biggest concern was getting samples so loml could decide on the color.

    You might want to think through this option. It could save you a ton but requires that the missus risk a needle or two on her machine.

    I said to her if she could sew waterproof boat vinyl then she could sew anything.

    Keep the frame and recover.

    By the way any chance you stored that canvas in a damp and wet location? I would think that somethings wrong with that material.

    Best of luck.
    cheers

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Mountain Home, Arkansas
    Posts
    11,832
    Dunno wat the problem might be. My period lodge (tent) is over 20 years old. Treated once when new, still doesn't leak. Canvas is supposed to swell up and self-seal in rain. Also puzzling why, after treating, it still leaked. Is it a synthetic?
    "Folks is funny critters."

    Think for yourselves and let others enjoy the privilege to do so, too. ~Voltaire

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tellico Plains, Tennessee
    Posts
    4,352
    Bruce,
    Are you sure the tent was leaking after the heavy dew?? I had an el cheapo from Academy Sports center set up at Coker Creek a couple of years ago... after the first day, just dropped the tent down over the tables and left it overnight... near end of October in the mountains can get cold at night and when we got back next morning, the tent was raining inside... the moisture had condensed on the inside of the tent, frozen into a frost and as soon as the sun came up started dripping... I wound up having to take a brush and sweep the inside of the tent to get as much frost off as I could.... you may have just had condensation on the inside of the tent... like a solar still.

    My Ez-Up has a nylon cover.. it's not a canvas at all and I've never had it leak. It's not treated for water proofing or anything. I've had problems with the frames, but never the top itself.
    Chuck
    Tellico Plains, TN
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/TellicoTurnings
    My parents taught me to respect my elders, but it's getting harder and harder to find any.
    If you go looking for trouble, it will usually find you.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Central Illinois
    Posts
    936
    Well, Chuck, what gave me the thought was the fact that as the sun changed directions, I could see what looked like pin holes all over the place. Think of a "STARY NIGHT" in the desert.

    No mold or mildew anywhere - though stored in the garage (unheated).

    I believe that the fabric IS a blend.

    Thanks for the comments and ideas. I'm not sure loml's machine can sew four layers for a lap seam.

    Bruce
    Bruce Shiverdecker - Retired Starving Artist ( No longer a Part timer at Woodcraft, Peoria, Il.)

    "The great thing about turning is that all you have to do is remove what's not needed and you have something beautiful. Nature does the hard part!"

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Dec 2006
    Location
    Portland, OR
    Posts
    140
    Bruce. I also have a EZ-UP and it is two years old. After two full seasons of using it 5 times a week for Farmers Markets and the fill in Arts and Craft show, it has yet to leak despite the Oregon/Washington rains.

    We leave the top on to pack it away, put it into the way too tight rolling bag that is all tore up, even wet! We take it out for the next event to dry it out.

    I'm currently looking into becoming a dealer for either EZ-UP or Caravann for next season as another part of my business and feel very comfortable with either company.

    I would go to Costco.com and order a new one for $199 if they have any left.

    In my case, I would consider $200 every year or two a pretty low cost of doing the business.

    Doug

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Tellico Plains, Tennessee
    Posts
    4,352
    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Shiverdecker View Post
    Well, Chuck, what gave me the thought was the fact that as the sun changed directions, I could see what looked like pin holes all over the place. Think of a "STARY NIGHT" in the desert.

    No mold or mildew anywhere - though stored in the garage (unheated).

    I believe that the fabric IS a blend.

    Thanks for the comments and ideas. I'm not sure loml's machine can sew four layers for a lap seam.

    Bruce
    Sorry, your original post did mention the pin holes.. I haven't had any problems with the tops (yet), but have had to replace my original ez-up because the "X" arms along the side would break at the cross joint...
    Chuck
    Tellico Plains, TN
    https://www.etsy.com/shop/TellicoTurnings
    My parents taught me to respect my elders, but it's getting harder and harder to find any.
    If you go looking for trouble, it will usually find you.

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