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tent-making-msg - 4/13/99


Useful ideas when making tents.


NOTE: See also the files: p-tents-msg, pavilions-msg, tent-care-msg, tent-fabrics-msg, tent-painting-msg, tent-ps-msg, tent-sources-msg, sewng-machnes-msg, sewing-tables-msg.





This file is a collection of various messages having a common theme that I have collected from my reading of the various computer networks. Some messages date back to 1989, some may be as recent as yesterday.


This file is part of a collection of files called Stefan's Florilegium. These files are available on the Internet at: http://www.florilegium.org


I have done a limited amount of editing. Messages having to do with separate topics were sometimes split into different files and sometimes extraneous information was removed. For instance, the message IDs were removed to save space and remove clutter.


The comments made in these messages are not necessarily my viewpoints. I make no claims as to the accuracy of the information given by the individual authors.


Please respect the time and efforts of those who have written these messages. The copyright status of these messages is unclear at this time. If information is published from these messages, please give credit to the originator(s).


Thank you,

   Mark S. Harris                  AKA:  THLord Stefan li Rous

                                         Stefan at florilegium.org



From: dpeters at panix.com (D. Peters)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Tent/Pavilion questions

Date: 10 Mar 1997 09:23:36 -0500


SThomas728 <sthomas728 at aol.com> wrote:

>I toyed with the idea of making my own tent, but I live in a small

>apartment where I could not lay fabric out that I was working with


I'm not trying to talk you into building your own tent--honest!--but I'd like

to point out that we built our (approx.) 12' x 16' oval pavilion in a 1

1/2 bedroom NYC apartment.  To anyone else out there contemplating

tent-building, it *can* be done in a less-than-lavish space.  (Although we

*did* have to take it to a park out the Island to test set-up the first



>also, my sewing machine would not ba able to handle the layers of thick



Much of the sewing on our tent was done on an elderly sewing machine that

my spouse had picked up at a garage sale for $10.00.  We did have to break

down and buy a sewing machine from Sears Roebucks because the geriatric

machine wouldn't do buttonholes....


Once again, I'm not trying to brow-beat you into building your own tent,

but there may be folks out there who'd like to build a tent, but have

similar reservations.  




looking forward to using the pavilion at a camping event in Brooklyn (!)

this summer....



From: odlin at reed.edu (Iain Odlin)

Newsgroups: rec.org.sca

Subject: Re: Tent/Pavilion questions

Date: 11 Mar 1997 08:58:18 GMT


If you're pressed for space to lay out large projects (ie: sewing a tent),

try making contact with local community or high school theatres.  A stage

usually has a great deal of space to play around with, and every theatre

generally has a 'dormant' period (some have winter, others summer).  If you

carefully explain what you'd like to do (and *clean up after yourself*),

you just might find all the space you need (and, sometimes, more help than

you could possibly use).


-Iain Odlin, Technical Director, Westbrook High School Drama Dept, who uses

  his stage to dry out his tent after camping events.  Hang it from the

  lighting battens and turn on the stage lights.  Dry in no time!



From hairyhoof at aol.com Tue May 13 12:38:26 1997

Date: 15 Apr 1997 18:13:06 GMT

From: Hairy Hoof <hairyhoof at aol.com>

To: sca at mc.lcs.mit.edu

Subject: Pavilion designs


Here in Calontir where we own more pavilions per capita then I have ever

seen anywhere else ( yes I have seen else where) many many people sew

there own tents. My wife has two, I have sewn five. In my Barony alone

40+people have tents they or someone else here sewed. All but one of these

people used basic household models to do the job. Some go over those big

multiple layer joints better then others but they can almost all do the

job. Just be careful of a few things:


Dont pull the fabric faster then the machine will take it


Be careful of the tension the tent exerts as you feed it through, the stress

of fabric weight on the arm is not always from an obvious direction. So

adjust the pile waiting on your side of the machine frequently to make

sure you have no trun into heavy stress from a fold


Be patient


Be patient


Don't rush and you won't have a problem. If you start breaking needles you

are probably either forcing the fabric or you have that hidden stress

somewhere. I have seen people go threw scores of needles and then need big

repairs on the machine. Sometimes the strain is just to much and a needle

will break. If however there is no apparent reason ( like those giant

joint seams) for the break you probably are doing one of those things I



Good luck, you can do it if I can

Tiberius, Baron, Forgotten Sea, Calontir



Date: Tue, 06 May 1997 14:34:11 -0400

From: nancy lynch <lughbec at erols.com>

To: sca-arts at raven.cc.ukans.edu

Subject: Round edges on tent designs.


Sheron Buchele/Curtis Rowland wrote:

> A tentmaker here, Unser Hafen, Outlands, got some of the treated for sun

> and mildew canvas which was very slick and smelled bad.  It also ripped

> along the sewn seams like 'tear along the dotted line'.  So I would urge

> getting a sample and checking it out!


> Baroness Leonora


Yep, that was me!  The weight of the pretreated canvas is such that if

it does get yanked by a serious wind and misplaced guy ropes, it will

tear. especially any flat surfaces. I am not sure why that is. Round

tents fare better than tents with large flat areas though.  The

elements tend to slip around rather than flatten the tent.  And ANY tent

that had the ropes staked in at odd angles will be a dissappointment in

a big wind.  There is a reason for the even distribution of tension and



Also, *do not* think that excessively strong thread (like one would sew

leather shoes with) is a good idea.  Keep in mind that the tent will

sway and bounce around in the breezes and all that movement will be bad

of you use too large or strong a thread or too many stitches close

together. Think of a saw in a hole moving back and forth a lot.  Use

larger than standard home sewing thread though, or the general weight

and sunshine will break the stitching fibers pretty quick.


The winds in the Rocky Mountain region can be quite amazing!  I've been

living on the East coast for the past year and when they have a 25mph

wind they all get excited.  That is a puny breeze when you live in the

shadow of the Rocky Mountains!  So keep in mind your tension lines and

distribute the stress evenly for the eventual TEST!  You may visit a

windy area and be glad of staking your tent correctly :-)


Sonas ort! (Irish - "Happiness on you!")

Lughbec ni Eoin


<the end>

Formatting copyright © Mark S. Harris (THLord Stefan li Rous).
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Comments to the Editor: stefan at florilegium.org