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Old 09-08-2009, 10:17 AM   #1
jsrider OP
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My tent is sticky (no smartass responses please :-)

I have a 20 year-old Moss tent. It spent several years packed away. Now the tent and especially the bags stick to themselves quite nastily. The tent works just fine, is still waterproof, and hasn't killed me with fumes or anything, but it's a PITA to work with. Anything I can do about it without ruining the tent?
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:26 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsrider
I have a 20 year-old Moss tent. It spent several years packed away. Now the tent and especially the bags stick to themselves quite nastily. The tent works just fine, is still waterproof, and hasn't killed me with fumes or anything, but it's a PITA to work with. Anything I can do about it without ruining the tent?
Have you tried gently hand-washing with a little Woolite or Dreft it in your bathtub?
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Old 09-08-2009, 10:46 AM   #3
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Do the above wash deal on it as well as let it soak for a while then re-waterproof it.
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Old 09-08-2009, 02:40 PM   #4
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had to laugh at the preface....

...I would say to use Dreft (in POWDER form!!!), let it soak for a while, rinse it two or three times just to be sure and get the suds out, let it mostly dry and then pitch it up to fully dry....and wash everything separately, the fly, tent, footprint, etc.

Liquid detergent clogs pores, this is true with any 'breathable' fabric used in outdoor clothing, tents, and sleeping bags (mostly nylon) hence the powder.

Hope that helps, could the sticky stuff be from the seamtape they used? I also wonder, if the tent has any screened logos etc. on it, are they peeling apart?
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Old 09-08-2009, 02:56 PM   #5
TheRackman
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I would say after 20 YEARS it's time for a new tent!
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Old 09-08-2009, 03:46 PM   #6
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Washing the tent with powdered detergent is a good way to clean the tent. I would pitch the tent and let it dry and than apply unscented talcum powder on the smooth PU coating. Use a rag so you don't apply too much. I did this with a Walrus Starstreme XV and it works like a charm. After you have camped don't store the tent rolled up or folded, if at all possible. If you have the room for it, i.e basement, pitch the tent or hang it inside out over a few clotheslines. YMMV
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Old 09-08-2009, 03:55 PM   #7
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I have an old Eureka that got like that, after sitting in its bag for too long. It is just the silicone on the inside of the fabric is sticking to itself. I try to use that tent a little more often now, and it has gotten a little better. It's been hanging inside out now, but I really haven't messed with it in a couple months since I got a new tent that actually fits (poles and all) in my saddlebag.
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Old 09-08-2009, 06:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jsrider
the bags stick to themselves quite nastily.

....muust......reeesist......temptation........
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Old 09-08-2009, 06:14 PM   #9
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My MSR Huba Huba is a great tent, but feels very sticky as well. Almost like the material is covered in bee's wax.
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Old 09-08-2009, 06:20 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boy Cow
My MSR Huba Huba is a great tent, but feels very sticky as well. Almost like the material is covered in bee's wax.

I've had this problem with the rain fly on some of my tents when setting it up under a tree.
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:36 PM   #11
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Found this on GORP: (http://gorp.away.com/gorp/gear/expert/030701.htm)

My sympathies, Tom. I regret to inform you that your old dome is probably kaput.

Even if you packed the tent when it was clean and dry, it's possible that ambient moisture has caused some mildew to attack the coating. More likely, long-term storage in a warm place has created the stickiness.

When you're dealing with coated fabrics, remember that huge strides have been made in the science of synthetics. Early versions may not live up to the reputation or claims of what's currently out there.

Before giving it the old heave-ho, there are a few things you can try. One is a wash recommended by the folks at Rainy Pass Repair (recipe follows). As a last resort you could try an application of a recoat product from Kenyon Consumer Products--no guarantees, but it's definitely cheaper than a new tent.

Rainy Pass Tent Wash & Mildew Remover

Phase I:
Mix 1/2-cup Lysol in one gallon of hot water.
Set up your tent then wash mixture in with a sponge and allow to dry completely.
Phase II:
Mix one cup salt and one cup lemon juice (no pulp!) in one gallon of hot water.
Wash tent with this mixture and allow to dry.
Rinse tent with fresh water and allow to dry completely before storage.
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:41 PM   #12
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Another post from Sea to Summit (great Aussie company that sells outdoor accessories)

SOFT OR STICKY TENT FABRIC PU COATINGS. Here is the only possible treatment for this problem of old age softening of PU coatings. Carefully separate fabric layers if they have 'blocked' together. It may not be possible to do this without some coating damage. Set your domestic iron on cotton, non-steam. With a piece of clean photocopy paper (80gsm or heavier) always between the iron and the fabric, work carefully over all the fabric. Keep moving to avoid excessive heating. Ironing will harden the coating and drive out moisture. If parts of the coating are damaged or missing (hold the fabric up to the light to see this most easily) it is possible to smear Seamgrip® over these areas. If they are extensive this may not be practical. Whether you Seamgrip or not, finish by spraying the coated face of the fabric with a silicon or Teflon based water repellent. Your specialist outdoor store will have a suitable product. As you should always do, store the tent unrolled, coated sides out to minimise self contact.
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:45 PM   #13
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good ideas.

What about a tent that smells like cheese. I'm thinking that storing it in a garage in FL for extended period caused it some kind of heat damage.

Its a 20 year old eureka / timberline.
Would the heat have caused it to break down some how?
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Old 09-10-2009, 08:50 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rboett
good ideas.

What about a tent that smells like cheese. I'm thinking that storing it in a garage in FL for extended period caused it some kind of heat damage.

Its a 20 year old eureka / timberline.
Would the heat have caused it to break down some how?
Cheese? Serve it with wine and you are good to go.

Actually I would think smelling of cheese is a case of mildew. See my post above.
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Old 09-11-2009, 07:12 AM   #15
jsrider OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRackman
I would say after 20 YEARS it's time for a new tent!
Could be. Other than the stickiness, however, the tent still works like new. It's a Moss (i.e., expensive and very nice), and I still really like it.

Thanks for all the suggestions. Using the tent more often is probably a good plan on general principle.
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