Building my own tipi

couesbitten

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Having read numerous posts regarding ultralight tipis on this an other sites, I've decided that I need one for my backcountry hiking/hunting trips. I've looked all over the web at tipis from Kifaru, Seek Outside, GoLite, BearPaw, etc., and what is obvious, is these things aren't cheap! While looking around the web, I found this post http://www.hikinghq.net/forum/showthread.php?2815-homemade-backpacking-tipi on Hiking HQ, and decided that if he could build his own, than so could I.

I was originally going to do an 8-sided tipi, but it was going to cost me about $80 more, and waste a lot of material. I'm now planning a 4-sided tipi, 10'X10', 7.5' tall, with a 10" noseeum sod skirt at the bottom of each wall and a full noseeum inner door. I'm planning to use a sheet of Tyvek for a groundcloth in half the tent, and leave the othe half open to bare ground, where I'll put an Ed T 16" stove to complete the package. It'll be made of 1.3 oz. silnylon, and doing some quick figuring, the tent body should weigh about 2 lbs, and after adding the center pole and stakes, should be coming in right at 3 lbs. Should cost me about $150 total to build, I'll post pictures of the process and the finished product.

Let me know what you think, and if you've got any experience doing this, I'm always open to suggestions and pointers. Thanks, Scott
 
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couesbitten

couesbitten

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I'm familiar with Cuben, but it is 4-5 times the cost of the silnylon, which defeats my effort to save money by building the tipi myself.
 

ScottR_EHJ

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I am pretty tempted to do the same thing, will be paying attention to your work.
 

Florida Mike

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Great idea! Make sure you post step by step of how you do it please. It would be nice if you could post it as you do it and not all at one time so we get an idea of how practical it is. Good luck, Mike
 

ceetoo

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Feb 24, 2012
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Couple of buddies built their own tipi. Turned out really nice. Think they were into it closer to $300-$350 when all said and done. They also spent a lot of time trying to figure out how to build a titanium stove, but couldn't get the materials cheap enough and wound up buying a ti goat instead. Here's a few pics of their shelter.

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-c2
 

larryschwartz

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You might want to rethink your decision to go with a four-sided design over an eight-sided design. I understand the reasoning about wasted material and cost but if you go with more than four sides, say five or six, you get a rounder silhouette which works much better at letting wind flow around the tent than a four-sided design which has flatter sides.
 
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couesbitten

couesbitten

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Larry, I hear you on the aerodynamics of a "rounder" tent, and I'm still considering the 8 sided design, but getting into all those angles and seams is kinda scary to me, we'll see.

For those of you that have tipi tents, is there anything that you wish they had built into the design of your tent?
 
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couesbitten

couesbitten

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WW, I'm very familiar with the BearPaw website, that is actually where I got the idea to build a square tent instead of an octagonal one. Their prices are very good, the Luna 4 tent is $225, but after I add the no-see-um sod cloth and door, the stove jack, and center pole, the price goes to $395. BearPaw actually sells all of the materials to make your own tent, and I actually just submitted an order for everything I need except for a zipper, and the total, shipped to my house, was $211.70. That's a little more than the $150 I had originally said, but I hadn't figured in $25 for a stove jack, or $10 for shipping, and in the end, I paid about $2 more per yard for the silnylon, but I trust the quality of BearPaws material. With any luck, I'll have my tent built by the end of April.
 
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