Sonntag, 4. Dezember 2011

New Tent!

Here's the post for my new Tent. It's a double-walled tunnel design, with double entrances. The Outer shell is made from 1.1 oz ultrasil from Quest Outfitters. It has 2 aluminum poles (.344 nanolites also from Quest), both of which are angled outward from bottom to top, decreasing the risk of rainwater coming in through the open door. The floor is made of 1.9 oz PU coated nylon (also from Quest), and is a bathtub design, about 15cm high. The rest of the inner is made of superultralight mosquito netting, which only weighs 17 grams per sq. meter. I ordered it from The inner is fully detachable from the outer, making it possible to play around with different inner designs. I'm already thinking of a design with less netting for colder camping. All zippers are YKK 3c.

Total weight: 2197 grams (4 lbs 12.8 oz) I didn't quite hit the wieght I had hoped, but it's usually that way with these projects!

Total time invested, including design: 59 hours 30 min.

Here are some pictures of the tent in Hornvik, Iceland this summer:

Here's a peek through the tent. As these pictures were taken, it had withstood 2 days of stormy rain and wind, with gusts up to 80 kmh (50mph). I have to admit, I didn't sleep very well the first night. I kept wondering if the seams would hold. The tent held up though, and stayed perfectly dry inside!

It's nice and roomy inside! Plenty of room for 2 people and gear. There's really room for three.

 The doors open to the top or bottom.  

The awnings can be rolled up or down, depending on weather

Here's a closeup of the attachment system for the awnings

I'll be doing some making of posts soon, with pictures to show the process.

Freitag, 17. Juni 2011

News and such

It's been a while since my last posting, too long really. I've got some new things in the works. I'm working on a new tent at the moment. It's a 2 person double walled tunnel design, which hopefully will come in at well under the 2 kilo mark. The estimates I've made have it at somewhere around 1700 grams, but I'll have to wait (weight) and see. I already have the design and pattern done and the pieces cut. I'll be posting the various stages of design and construction here as it unfolds.

I'll also be putting together a guide to all things related to energy in the backcountry. In the last few years, I've been on a quest for the perfect charging capabilities, and I've sorted through a lot of various solar devices and chargers. Hopefully what I've learned along the way can save some of you the trouble of reinventing the wheel. More on all this in the next few days. Until then, take it lightly!

Donnerstag, 3. März 2011

New Pot Lid

I was weighing parts of my cooking kit one day, and realized that the lid of my MSR kettle was pretty heavy in comparison to the pot, wieghing 36 grams (1.27 oz). I decided to make a new lid out of some thick aluminum foil, and the result is a total savings of 29 grams (1 oz)! My new pot lid weighs 7 grams (0.25 oz). I used a piece of nylon cord for the handle. Here's a picture of old and new for comparison:

Here's a picture of the MSR Kettle with it's new lid, weighing a total of 97 grams (3.42 oz).

Dienstag, 1. März 2011

Enlightened Pocket Rocket

I decided one day to try and shave a little bit of weight off of my trusty old MSR Pocket rocket. Unaltered, it's a pretty light stove, and weighs 87 grams (3.07 oz). I thought it shouldn't be too hard to take a little bit of weight off of it, and the result is a 71 gram stove (2.5 oz), with a total weight savings of 16 grams (0.57 oz). The modifications I did are:

-took off the nearly useless mini windscreen
-ground down the inner part of the potstand legs
-ground down the aluminum stove base (reducing by far the most weight)

Lightweight windscreen system

Windscreens are always a little bit of a problem, especially if you're trying to make them lightweight. I've designed this windscreen system to use with my Pocket Rocket. It has an adjustable ring, and can accomodate a small or large diameter pot. The base mounts directly onto the stove. It holds itself in place with its own weight, and creates a microclimate of heat around the bottom of the pot, vastly increasing the efficiency of the stove. With this system I can boil 2 cups of water with around 6 grams of fuel. I chose to use titanium foil because of it's durability and strength to weight ratio. It's also easy to cut with sturdy scissors or a utility knife.

Material: .005" Titanium Foil (base) .002" Titanium Foil (ring)

Weight: 17 grams (0.6 oz)

Here's the base mounted on the stove:

base and ring:

with the MSR Kettle:

Sonntag, 27. Februar 2011

Cuben Wallet

I've had the urge to make a cuben wallet ever since I saw pictures of one on Backpacking Light. One of my main problems wit a wallet is carrying my passport. Being an American living in Germany, I'm required to carry it. I designed this to hold my passport, 6 cards, and money. It's a bifold design with 2 card pouches. I reinforced all of the edges with an extra layer of cuben. It only added about 1 gram, and made it a lot stronger, so it was well worth it. The Velcro closure make sit sit better in my pocket without sliding around and deforming.

Materials: Cuben Fiber CT0.6K.08, Cuben Tape 3M 9485PC, velcro 1cm width

Total Weight: 4.9 grams (0.17 oz)

Pot Lifter

For this project I basically copied the MSR Lite Lifter design from a picture, and freehanded it onto the aluminum sheet. It's made out of 1.5 mm aluminum. The padding on the handle is 1 mm thick sticky-backed neoprene. Total weight 23 grams. That's a whopping 20 grams lighter than my Trangia handle, so I almost cut the weight in half! It's not quite as bomb-proof as the Trangia, but it does just fine lifting my Trangia 1.5 liter pot full of water. Here's a few pics: