Tarptent Bowfin 1

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Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 11:31 am

Hi all,

Has anyone purchased a Bowfin 1 yet?

https://www.tarptent.com/bowfin1.html

I am walking the 223km Larrapinta in June and the 32km Thorsborne Trail on Hincinbrook Island in July and thought my 2.35kg Hilleberg Soulo will be too heavy.

I use treking poles so also liked the StratoSpire 1 but the ease of setup of the Bowfin (and the freestanding aspect) has me swayed that way.

It also looks like it would handle un-expected snow for when I am tempted to use it in Tassie.

The Rainbow also looked good and can use trekking poles to improve strength (or make freestanding) but pretty sure I want double skin.

Any thoughts??

Do you love your Tarptents??

Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby kitty » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 12:55 pm

Andrew wrote:Do you love your Tarptents??


I have the SS1 and I love it - double wall, 2 vestibules, plenty of interior space and headroom. Plus I like the solid inner a lot.
I had the Rainbow but then discovered I didnt like single wall and single vestibule tents for the areas that I hike in.

The Bowfin looks very attractive with the double-wall and double-vestibules and free standing! And 1kg!
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 1:45 pm

thx Kitty,

Do you find the SS1 a pain to erect sometimes?

Especially on hard or rocky ground?

Or in the wind?

I do like the idea of getting value from my treking poles by getting the extra space of the SS1.

The Bowfin 1 looks like a breeze to erect:-
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pxtqwGd2mp0

Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby kitty » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 3:28 pm

The first couple of pitches took longer as I was getting used to the geometry of the SS1. Now its no problem.
Never had to camp on rocky or windy areas so far, so cannot help you there sorry :) I think there are some other threads on that topic for the SS1.
The TT website doesnt appear to list the vestibule area of the Bowfin1 vs the SS1, but the SS1 does look more spacious when you watch the little videos with the 6ft human.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Suz » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 5:28 pm

I also have an SS1. Mostly very good - gets a bit unhappy in winds of 50k (happened to me in Norway) - with the ridge line running the wrong way in an area of no protection, so got the winds full on. As for rocky ground - yes it is trying to set up in hard ground - as is probably any tent that is not freestanding.

I deliberated and deliberated with my tent choice - overall I am very happy with it.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 6:22 pm

super thx Suz,

I am also spending days deliberating and usually I make quick decisions.

Just found out the Bowfin doesn't have a solid inner yet (maybe later) so bit nervous as Larrapinta Trail will be just on minus at night and the mesh inner will probably be too cold.

So not sure where I am at but will have to decide soon to have time for it to arrive.

Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby South_Aussie_Hiker » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 7:22 pm

I love the SS2.

But you do need level ground to set up the SS series of tents.

Their strength comes from the tension on the fly, and if the ground is uneven it can be really hard to get a good pitch.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby lseries92 » Fri 14 Apr, 2017 8:03 pm

Re: Mesh inner - I am looking at doing the Larapinta from mid-June of this year and will be taking a tent with a mesh inner. That said I will probably steer clear of camping in some of the higher/exposed locations unless I am totally confident of good /mild conditions ... I did a fair bit of car based camping around Alice Springs and the Simpson Desert a few years ago using a tent with a mesh inner and did not have a problem (the lowest temperature I experienced was -6 at Rainbow Valley).

With the mesh inner I am more worried about the odd morning where I wake up to find everything has a (not-so) nice coating of dust if the breeze gets up overnight and it gets under the fly ... :-)
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Suz » Sat 15 Apr, 2017 3:28 pm

Andrew...I am happy to show you my SS1 if we can link up one day before end of April (I will probs leave tassie early May) ...that is, if you think it would help you make a decision. I'm doing Frenchmans Cap from tomorrow and then heading to the east coast (I think). I will be taking the boat back to the mainland eventually ...so will end up in the North at some point. Not sure if that might leave it too late for you to make a buying decision...especially as TTs are $15 off today ;)

I am also thinking about doing the larapinta this winter...hadn't occurred to me that the ground may be a nightmare for it...so thanks for pointing it out. I hope someone who's done the trail can tell us what the tent sites are like. Incidentally...for the tent platforms that you get so commonly in tassie it sets up fine. But I have found it horrible to set up at places like Fortescue Bay and Mt Field - where PWS let people drive their campers onto the sites and therefore compact the ground. Don't know why PWS does that but anyhow...

Also agree strongly with the comment about the flat ground set up.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Sat 15 Apr, 2017 3:40 pm

Hi Suz,

You will love Frenchman's. see PM.

Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Franco » Sun 16 Apr, 2017 9:29 am

The Bofin has two small vestibules, the SS are at the other end with two very lage ones.
It can be seen in the floorplan , under specifications :
Image
what it can't be seen there is that you can slide the floor inward at the center (either side) to make the vestibule larger and therefore the floor area smaller.

I must try setting up the SS2 on uneven ground in the next few days.
My guess is that I have not had the problem in getting the shelter in tension because I set up the floor rectangle first so easy enough usualy to get a somewhat flat area of that size.
The vestibules don't matter to me because I use the apex guylines for side tension.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Sun 07 Jan, 2018 3:28 pm

Well my Bowfin 1 arrived with partial inner - looks good :)

Just wondering Franco what to use for the seam sealing mixture?

Maybe shellite or mineral turpentine?

Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Franco » Tue 09 Jan, 2018 7:57 am

We, TT and myself, use mineral turpentine to dilute silicone.
The standard type NOT the vegetable nor the odourless versions.
Some do use shellite/white gas/naphtha/Coleman fuel but I think mineral turpentine mixes better.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Thu 11 Jan, 2018 12:58 pm

Thanks Franco,
I just did the seam-sealing on the new Bowfin 1 ready for an 8 day SW Cape circuit (flying in Melaleuca) on Saturday.
The bottle (large size) that I purchased from TT said it was premixed with Odourless White Spirit so I didn't need to mix anything.
It went on well and I did one of my old tents and the top part of another one before the bottle ran out.
I did have the Bowfin 2 in my shopping cart for a while but thought I should try the Bowfin 1 first.
Just looking at it on the lawn I think I should have purchased both :)
My wife even reckons we would both fit in the Bowfin 1 when used as emergency tent like Overland Track, Larapinta or Bibbulmun where don't need to keep packs inside as usually a nice shelter structure available for gear even if sleeping space was full.
Plenty of space in the middle for 2 mats but they overlap at each end - but probably fine in a pinch.
Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Franco » Thu 11 Jan, 2018 2:57 pm

Great Andrew, have fun !
To clarify the "odourless" bit, some brands (or specific products) do work but many types don't , so standard Mineral Turpentine is safer (but smellier...) because they all work.
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby wildwanderer » Thu 11 Jan, 2018 3:38 pm

Welcome to the bowfin club Andrew :D
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Ms_Mudd » Tue 15 May, 2018 1:01 pm

How is your Bowfin1 going, Andrew?
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Andrew » Tue 15 May, 2018 1:23 pm

Hi Ms_Mudd,

The Bowfin is good. Just trying to decide whether to get a Bowfin 2 as walking the 1,000km Bibbulmun Sep/Oct with my wife.
Think we have decided to get the new Tarptent Notch LI and carry the two - 1 man tents.
The reasoning is that we will mostly be cooking/talking etc in the shelters and the tents will just be for sleeping and being as my wife only comes on epic trips (being a horsey girl) it might be better to have another lighter 1 man option in the cupboard.
Plus if one of us quits we don't have a weight issue carrying a 2 man for the rest of the trip.
The Bowfin is really quick and easy to put up and has enough room.
It is quite long too so don't seem to worry about touching the ends (I am 6ft).
I did get quite a bit of condensation on a 4 night high up trip in Tassie but we were camping near lakes so was expected but even so it wasn't a major issue.
I did get a small hole in the floor which repaired easily with tenacious tape but I was surprised as I thought I checked carefully.
I did buy the Tyvex footprint but didn't carry it on that trip.
I reckon it will handle pretty rough weather and even snow as it feels really solid and has steep walls.
Probably be able to point it into the wind with some scrub for shelter and survive rough weather.
I bought the large seam seal kit and did the Bowfin myself plus all my other tents at the same time.
I also bought some extra guys just to have for any trips likely to have rough weather.
It would need more than the 2 pegs for most trips and I just take a few from my Hilleberg tents.
The postage is pretty dear like $US80 so the Notch LI at $599 will be expensive but at 570 grams will be great as an alternative to Hilleberg Soulo & Bowfin 1 depending on the forecast.

Cheers,
Andrew
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Drew » Tue 15 May, 2018 3:35 pm

I am also thinking about doing the larapinta this winter...hadn't occurred to me that the ground may be a nightmare for it...so thanks for pointing it out.


Just found out the Bowfin doesn't have a solid inner yet (maybe later) so bit nervous as Larrapinta Trail will be just on minus at night and the mesh inner will probably be too cold.


I did a 5 day section of the Larapinta a few years ago in early August (I think). Nights were cold but no problems with a mesh inner. If I were going again I'd probably just take my Stratospire 2 fly and leave the inner.

Our campsites were mostly sandy (often dry riverbeds). I think I might have even taken a couple of snow pegs for the sand. I was using a freestanding tent then but I don't think it would have been problematic for the Stratospire. Of course I haven't done the whole walk though...
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Re: Tarptent Bowfin 1

Postby Ms_Mudd » Fri 18 May, 2018 12:25 pm

Thanks for the very indepth reply, Andrew!

As a very recently reformed horsey girl, I can see that your wife would not have loads of time to come out of adventures with you. I like your plans of 2x lightweight tents, makes sense in your situation. Plus then, I get to hear what you think of another of the Tarptent stable (pun intended).

I love the look of the SS1, it really looks like a palace, I love the weight of the notch, particularly in the Dyneema fabric. I can't help but love the simplicity of the nearly free standing Bowfin though...too many tents for one as indecisive as me!
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