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Old 11-18-2012, 03:12 PM   #1
cjbiker OP
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LL Bean Microlight FS 1-person tent

I was at LL Bean the other day, and wandered into the camping section hoping to check out the MSR Hubba tent. I've been thinking about a lightweight 1 person tent to lighten my little bike touring load. They had the Hubba, but also had this:

Microlight FS 1-Person Tent



The vestibule is a little smaller, but should still fit a pair of MX boots. It's a little lighter than the Hubba and the poles are a bit simpler. The tent is $110 cheaper than the Hubba and the footprint is $24 cheaper. Sounds like a winner in my book. The salesperson said that this tent and the 2 person version were redesigned last year. Does anyone have experience with this tent, specifically the new, redesigned version?
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Old 11-18-2012, 03:36 PM   #2
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No experience... but looks smaller and lighter than than the Hubba. The major differences would likely be affected by how big you are and how much space you need. Looks like a pretty neat tent - and one well worth considering - especialy for less $$ than MSR.

Aside from the smaller vestibule, the peak height is almost 10" less. For me, struggling in/out of MC gear inside the tent is easier with more peak height. PLus, I dislike doors that zip 'down' to the floor instead of up to the ceiling but I am weird
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Old 11-18-2012, 03:52 PM   #3
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I'd be, speaking personally, wary of buying a 1 man tent and losing space.

I had a seedhouse 2 which I loved. It wasn't that large on the bike, it certainly wasn't heavy and I loved it. I'd certainly buy another one (my last was stolen) when I get back to camping again.

One of the features it offered, that I'd consider a requirement is the ability to erect the inner separately from the outer - in essence a mosquito net (in action below)

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Old 11-18-2012, 05:13 PM   #4
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I tried a similar tent a couple of years ago. Used it in rain and 40 mph wind conditions. NOT for me at all, plus it felt like I was laying in a coffin. I'd recommend something bigger. IMO of course.
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Old 11-18-2012, 05:37 PM   #5
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I'm aware of the compromises of a 1 man tent. I certainly won't be getting rid of my 2 man tent, but I want to pare down the load for really minimalist off-road touring.

I got to crawl in the tent at the store, and the headroom seemed ok. It's definitely for sleeping, not hanging out, but I'm ok with that. The tent can be set up with or without the fly, and if you get the footprint, the poles and fly can be set up without the tent itself.

I guess I should have said that I'm looking for feedback on things like waterproofness, overall quality, and any serious nit-picks from those that have used it.

cjbiker screwed with this post 11-18-2012 at 05:45 PM
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Old 11-18-2012, 06:34 PM   #6
Jeff B
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CJ,

Everyone's comfort zone as far as tolerance in confined spaces and how much their willing to haul can vary. So another's advice may or may not apply to you.

I'm not crazy about it, but i can get along w/a hooped bivy bag.......

This is the two bivy bags i use [depending on the conditions].............




When I'm trying to save weight, cause I'll be riding some gnarly stuff on my route I'll do fine w/these.

I use a large UL dry bag to keep my gear in that I keep next to my bivy so I can get access in morning to get dressed. Somewhat less than comfortable to get dressed in one of these but doable.

If I'm taking the street or at least somewhat groomed gravel route I'm inclined to use one of my one man tents [depending on the weather].

The two I use...........




If my wife is joining me I use my old Moss stargazer. Over 7-8lbs easy. This is more than I like to take on the bike, but awesome if I know I'll be confined in it in for long stretches of bad weather.



Now my favorite and go-to shelter is by far my Eureka chrysalis hammock. It's also a bit bulky and heavy but the comfort and inside storage [above my head and below my feet] can't be beat.




I'm always amazed at how heavily packed some riders are. But everyone is different.

Oh, If I had to only have one tent it would be my Eureka Spitfire. W/the small spaces on each side of my bag, above my head, and below my feet inside. And the vestibule spaces under each side of the rain fly.

BTW, The tents you looking at now are about the same size and weight as this but a notch up in quality.
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Old 11-18-2012, 06:43 PM   #7
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That LL bean your considering sure looks good. It's freestanding. At around 4lbs the two person model might be worth the extra weight.

The packed length is 20". Will this fit in your top case or panniers OK?
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Old 11-18-2012, 07:26 PM   #8
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I'm using a Giant Loop Coyote. My current tent fits fine in that, I put the tent and fly in a stuff sack and strap the poles on the outside. Whatever tent I replace it with will be smaller, so packing is not an issue.
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Old 11-18-2012, 09:22 PM   #9
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That tent looks a lot like this little sierra designs tent that I used for awhile, it's good to have gear choices to match the ride. Mine fell victim to a hot muffler but it was a great little tent that saw some hard use.



This is a photo of my mattress, sleeping bag and tarp/bivy for the trips where low bulk is critical, I've used this combo for many nights in some pretty miserable conditions. There are so many good options any more, a Spitfire is a great tent for the dollars and I've got over 200 nights in a bivy like the red one Jeff posted and it's still as good as new.

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Old 11-19-2012, 04:50 AM   #10
JohnBoy777
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LL Bean MicroLight

2-man freestanding tent is under 200 bucks and under 4lbs - what's not to like?

Backpacker mags Editor's Choice Award 2012 -
LINK: http://www.backpacker.com/editors-choice-2012-llbean-microlight-fs-2-tent/videos/182
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Old 11-19-2012, 08:15 AM   #11
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It's from LL Bean, if you try it and don't like it, they have a 100% return policy anytime.
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:54 PM   #12
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Microlight FS 1-Person Tent

Santa just delivered. $135. The FS-1 without the fly shown.
Two poles. Spine and legs are shock corded together with a separate short cross member. Will get the Footprint for another $15.
Setup is fast and easy.
Definitely not intended for a big man.

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Old 12-16-2012, 05:47 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OhBoy View Post
Santa just delivered. $135. The FS-1 without the fly shown.
Two poles. Spine and legs are shock corded together with a separate short cross member. Will get the Footprint for another $15.
Setup is fast and easy.
Definitely not intended for a big man.

Sounds like a good deal. Was it on sale? I plan to buy one in the spring.
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Old 12-16-2012, 05:52 PM   #14
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I would be concerned about those 20" poles..which is a huge consideration when trying to pack in soft pannier like a giant loop or wolfman rollie. I have a bunch of UL backpacking tents.. and while I have no issue packing the longer poles for back packing.. I want a UL 2 person with the smallest packed size for camping off my 570. I will carry an extra pound or two on the bike, for a smaller packed size... IMHO.
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Old 12-16-2012, 06:19 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mrt10x View Post
I would be concerned about those 20" poles..which is a huge consideration when trying to pack in soft pannier like a giant loop or wolfman rollie. I have a bunch of UL backpacking tents.. and while I have no issue packing the longer poles for back packing.. I want a UL 2 person with the smallest packed size for camping off my 570. I will carry an extra pound or two on the bike, for a smaller packed size... IMHO.
I strap the poles on the outside of my GL Coyote. The poles on this tent are a bit shorter than the poles on the tent I have now, so no problem there.
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