Tent Problems

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Tent Problems

Postby TnTammy » Tue Jul 09, 2019 10:24 am

Our BA Copper Spur II had trouble with the zippers AGAIN. Long story but they've replaced a Seedhouse and a C Spur in the past for us r/t the zippers and so you can imagine we are pretty gentle on zipping when on a multi-day trip. Despite a good cleaning each time, the zippers either get warped or off track, so we've sent our current tent back to Big Agnes for repairs. Of note, were it not for the zippers, everything about the Copper Spur II has been Great and very durable. Big Agnes has responded promptly with our problems of the past and as a new update, believes they can return our repaired tent within a couple weeks.

In the meantime, after reading multiple reviews, we purchased the Nemo Dagger 2P. It seems to have all the features we were interested in, light, nice interior height and size. Dual doors and sizable vestibules. Getting ready for an upcoming trip, i went thru the most recent reviews of this tent....too many saying it leaks. Not only the seams but the waterproofing itself. Mike contacted the company and sure enough, the warehouses were supposed to have pulled this tent but sold it to us anyway. Nemo replied that there is a defect in the waterproofing and are indeed sending a new tent with their next shipment in mid July.
Sending this out hoping it might help someone who also made this purchase this spring.

The Schnozzel Pumpbag by ExPed. Great item to help inflate your ExPed mattress. After about 80 uses, the seal with the connector to the mattress developed a leak which we ducktaped for the remainder of the trip & worked fine. Sending a message to the company when we got home, Exped replaced with a new one. 8)

Just wanted to share.
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby paul » Tue Jul 09, 2019 12:24 pm

I have a Big Agnes tent as well and have problems with the zippers. I won't buy another tent from them. Good to know about the water proofing issues on the Dagger 2.
We are in the mountains and the mountains are in us. - John Muir
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby Selkie » Tue Jul 09, 2019 3:20 pm

Hi Tammy, Hi Paul,

I am thinking about the Nemo Hornet/Hornet Elite 2P. I like Nemo for its boutique nature and constant innovation; also, it's based in Dover, NH!

Went to REI, where the Hornet is on sale, and discovered a) there are no instructions with the tent, one must watch the video; b) the material has a very slippery feel; and c) seems likely to get holes poked in it easily. Weighs nothing, though.

So it's back to 10-plus-year-old tents and noodling one of Henry Shires's tarp tents. ?Gossamer Gear.

The season is here! :arrow:
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby joybird » Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:26 pm

I LOVE LOVE LOVE my Big Agnes Copper Spur 1-person tent. It is the older, slightly heavier (but IMO much more functional) model with a small, zippered pass-through that lets you stay inside the tent and reach out the non-door side to access gear stored under the fly. It totally rocks!

But, after several seasons of use, the door zipper started failing. I tried to fix it myself but no luck. For a summer or two, I was able to work around the problem by making sure I used just one of the two zipper pulls, but when the second pull also started getting persnickety, I finally contacted BA. To their credit, they immediately authorized the repair, turned the tent around quickly and I have had no problems since.

However, after reading about your repeat problems, I will be particularly careful this summer. Thanks for the info.

Fingers crossed that the tent gets back in time for your awesome upcoming trip!
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby PeteE » Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:59 pm

I have this model Big Agnes.
Big Agnes Copper Spur UL2 Classic Tent
https://www.rei.com/product/128902/big- ... 0004651695

I chose it because it is light(~3 1/2lbs) for its size and floor length is 88"--which I need for my 6'4" height.
Also like having two entrances--handy in bad weather. Lots of protected space in the two vestibules too.

However, it seems there is a consensus here that BA lacks something in the zipper department.
So I really like everything about this tent except the zippers on the fly.

I've had no trouble with the double zippers on the 2 entrances to the tent proper.
But the fly zippers make me crazy!
The "flaps" that cover the zippers keep getting caught in the zipper both zipping the fly open and closed.
The problem is worse when the fly is wet. So I have coped by keeping a finger on my zipping hand between zipper and the fly when zipping it.

Anyone else have this problem with their Big Agnes tent fly zippers?
Or am I just dumb and need to go to "zipper school"? 8)

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Re: Tent Problems

Postby TnTammy » Wed Jul 10, 2019 2:13 pm

paul wrote:I have a Big Agnes tent as well and have problems with the zippers. I won't buy another tent from them. Good to know about the water proofing issues on the Dagger 2.


Hey Paul, in case you're considering sending your tent in to BA...i CAN vouch for their customer service. Our Seedhouse 2P was so old (10 years) that the seam tape was brittle, cracked and rotting in some spots, so we sent it in to ask what we could do about it...They sent us a NEW tent! Other times have been about the zippers on the Copper Spur, so initially they repaired or replaced them, and on a subsequent year, sent us a new tent body. 8) This time not sure if they are repairing or replacing but they did guarantee that we'd have a tent by the end of the month.

Selkie wrote:Hi Tammy, Hi Paul,

I am thinking about the Nemo Hornet/Hornet Elite 2P. I like Nemo for its boutique nature and constant innovation; also, it's based in Dover, NH!

Went to REI, where the Hornet is on sale, and discovered a) there are no instructions with the tent, one must watch the video; b) the material has a very slippery feel; and c) seems likely to get holes poked in it easily. Weighs nothing, though.

So it's back to 10-plus-year-old tents and noodling one of Henry Shires's tarp tents. ?Gossamer Gear.

The season is here! :arrow:


Yes, Selkie, the season IS here and we need you tented up so we can see pics of your next North by Northwest adventures! :mrgreen:
About the Nemo, YESSSS, the material IS very slippery and SOoo thin...setting it up in the backyard i was thinking how easy it looked to puncture and wondered about its durability. Unlike the Copper Spur which has held up so well in 3 Season extremes, this material on the Nemo gave me pause...thin and slippery. Also the snaps at the 4 corners are Jacob's feet and the plastic looks alittle cheesy (just sayin'). Once could picture the fly taking flight in a big wind r/t the little clasp that's supposed to hold it on the Jacob's feet. Are these tradeoffs for a lighter tent worth it? Until the bad reviews of leaking with the Dagger 2019, there's a ton of great support for their tents. We're looking forward to trying it in Idaho should the company get our replacement to us in time.

joybird wrote:I LOVE LOVE LOVE my Big Agnes Copper Spur 1-person tent. It is the older, slightly heavier (but IMO much more functional) model with a small, zippered pass-through that lets you stay inside the tent and reach out the non-door side to access gear stored under the fly. It totally rocks!

But, after several seasons of use, the door zipper started failing.!


Joyce, yesss, there's so much to love about the CS! Despite the fresh lime green of the Nemo, we have the urge to stay loyal. One tip that helped me manage the zipper problem in the field is something i feel sure you've tried. The zipper has black pulls on either side and one usually grabs the inside pull to zip back and forth if they are inside the tent and similarly the outside pull if coming in from outside. I now separate the 2 pulls on the door alittle bit then manage zipping back and forth using my 2 fingers on either side of the zipper keeping it centered as it travels along the track. Sounds ridiculous but that one extra step seemed to keep the two zipper tracks from separating. Frustrating, i know, but thats how genteel we had to treat it. Also, another obvious suggestion, I try to make sure there's no traction on the door, like lying on the mattress too close to the door, when trying to zip it closed. That traction seemed to pull the two tracks apart.

There's gotta be some engineer out there with a tool that could fix this!

PeteE wrote:I have this model Big Agnes.

So I really like everything about this tent except the zippers on the fly.

I've had no trouble with the double zippers on the 2 entrances to the tent proper.
But the fly zippers make me crazy!
The "flaps" that cover the zippers keep getting caught in the zipper both zipping the fly open and closed.
The problem is worse when the fly is wet. So I have coped by keeping a finger on my zipping hand between zipper and the fly when zipping it.

Anyone else have this problem with their Big Agnes tent fly zippers?
Or am I just dumb and need to go to "zipper school"? 8)

pete :wink:


Hey Pete,
It may be fitting to rename this thread, "Zipper School"! :D
Can Not tell you how many times i have cussed at trying to zip the fly when its soaking wet. The flaps got caught in the zipper all the time, just as you say. And its so frustrating b/c one is often getting out of the tent in the pouring rain b/c they gotta go whiz! if you put off Pee'ing until the last minute b/c its raining outside, like i do, its miserable fiddling with the zipper...arghhh. Appreciate the visual on your zipping technique and will give that a shot next time.
Did you abandon your lightweight white single wall?? It was like a palace...lots of room.

Upon return in August, i hope to have a review of the new Nemo Dagger 2P. If it doesn't arrive in time, I will report on how Zipper School went. :lol:

Stay dry and bug free out there! Tam
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby paul » Thu Jul 11, 2019 11:54 am

Hi Tammy,

Thanks, I'll try calling BA to see if they can fix the tent zippers. Maybe I'll get a new tent. Anyway, I think the BA UL1 was fine when the zippers worked. It's a good tent for a place like Glacier park backpacking in the summer. Most of the time the weather is good so you don't a heavier sturdier tent.

As far as the Dagger 2 goes, do you know if they have fixed the waterproofing issues? Do you think if I ordered one now, I would get the good version of Dagger 2? Just thinking about what I'll use on my August Backpack. I was thinking ordering the REI Quarter dome but it's almost 2LBs heavy than I'm used to.

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Re: Tent Problems

Postby JustMike » Thu Jul 11, 2019 8:23 pm

paul wrote:Hi Tammy,

Thanks, I'll try calling BA to see if they can fix the tent zippers. Maybe I'll get a new tent. Anyway, I think the BA UL1 was fine when the zippers worked. It's a good tent for a place like Glacier park backpacking in the summer. Most of the time the weather is good so you don't a heavier sturdier tent.

As far as the Dagger 2 goes, do you know if they have fixed the waterproofing issues? Do you think if I ordered one now, I would get the good version of Dagger 2? Just thinking about what I'll use on my August Backpack. I was thinking ordering the REI Quarter dome but it's almost 2LBs heavy than I'm used to.

Paul


Hi Paul,

I'm Tammy's backpacking equipment valet :D , so she asked me to respond. I apologize for the length, but there are a bunch of important details.

With regard to our 2013 Big Agnes Copper Spur 2, BA said the culprit for our tent body zipper problems was probably the fine desert sand we encounter in Arizona and Utah. That sand, while very fine, still manages to be very gritty and wreaks havoc with many equipment items (terrible for my camera). Our zipper failures first occurred on one of those desert trips. BA suggested thorough cleaning between trips and use of Gear Aid Zipper Cleaner & Lubricant to maximize zipper life.

https://www.gearaid.com/products/zipper-lubricant

They fixed our tent body zippers the first time in 2015 for $35 (including return shipping). I don't know what they did, but they didn't replace the zippers. That bought us 4 more trips before the problems started again, and then we sent it in a 2nd time after our 2016 trips. They said they couldn't fix it, bit would sell us a replacement tent body for $107 (including return shipping). The zippers on that 2016 tent body were doing fine through this spring (2019) when the tub/bottom got really sticky - all the time. All of the other tent pieces and the rest of the tent body were fine. BA asked us to send everything in for them to look at, which we did. Yesterday I got an email and shipping notice from BA saying they're sending us a new complete, latest generation Copper Spur HV UL 2 tent & footprint for free.

Regarding the NEMO fixing the Dagger 2 & 3 tent floor issue, judging by NEMO's letter I don't know. Here's the letter dated April 18, 2019 that NEMO emailed to me last week:

Image

It says "Only purchases made between January and April of 2019 are subject to this manufacturing concern." But the letter was written in April. Also the ID method described was to identify if it was a 2019 Dagger: "2019 Daggers can be identified by specific lot #’s listed on the back of the instructions label, inside the stuff sack. A 2019 Dagger will have the numbers 19 following the letters VNN as highlighted in example (i.e.-122VNN198161)."

Additionally, a 7/3/19 email NEMO sent to me regarding replacement of our tent says: "We're happy to report that we have fixed the issue and can get you a replacement tent with the correct waterproofing specs. We are expecting these new tents to arrive to us in mid-July." So it sounds like they didn't, as of 7/3/19, have the properly waterproofed tents.
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby zozeppelin » Fri Jul 12, 2019 7:06 am

Love / hate relationship with BA copper spur.

I have a classic 3. Really impressed with the design and materials. Noted that the fly thinness, tension and adhesion when unpacking were red flags. I broke a pole section once (my fault) and they sent me a replacement no questions asked - great. I’ve always taken good care of the tent: cleaning, storing loose and dry, but eventually it started developing pinholes in the fly (tension, time and thickness). I got tired of patching these after a couple years, and the seam tape started to separate as well, so I contacted BA to purchase a replacement fly (new or used ok) They said to send it in for repair, I said it’s beyond repair otherwise I’d repair it, they insisted so I sent it in anyways on my dime. Lo and behold they determine it’s not repairable and they don’t have any replacement flys as it’s the original design. So after a 2 month wait I get my tent back and back to square one with more patches and now seam sealer because it’s a great tent and too much investment to throw it away over a bad fly / buy an entire new tent.

I ended up buying a fly creek 1 really cheap for my solo trip last year and have been on the lookout for a copper spur with similar old model discount but no luck so far, so am resigned to repairing the old one for this years trip.
Last edited by zozeppelin on Fri Jul 12, 2019 2:05 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby IRG » Fri Jul 12, 2019 8:56 am

Hey Tammy and Mike.
Just saying Hi!
Happy Trails!
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Re: Tent Problems

Postby paul » Mon Jul 15, 2019 12:03 pm

JustMike wrote:
paul wrote:Hi Tammy,

Thanks, I'll try calling BA to see if they can fix the tent zippers. Maybe I'll get a new tent. Anyway, I think the BA UL1 was fine when the zippers worked. It's a good tent for a place like Glacier park backpacking in the summer. Most of the time the weather is good so you don't a heavier sturdier tent.

As far as the Dagger 2 goes, do you know if they have fixed the waterproofing issues? Do you think if I ordered one now, I would get the good version of Dagger 2? Just thinking about what I'll use on my August Backpack. I was thinking ordering the REI Quarter dome but it's almost 2LBs heavy than I'm used to.

Paul


Hi Paul,

I'm Tammy's backpacking equipment valet :D , so she asked me to respond. I apologize for the length, but there are a bunch of important details.

With regard to our 2013 Big Agnes Copper Spur 2, BA said the culprit for our tent body zipper problems was probably the fine desert sand we encounter in Arizona and Utah. That sand, while very fine, still manages to be very gritty and wreaks havoc with many equipment items (terrible for my camera). Our zipper failures first occurred on one of those desert trips. BA suggested thorough cleaning between trips and use of Gear Aid Zipper Cleaner & Lubricant to maximize zipper life.

https://www.gearaid.com/products/zipper-lubricant

They fixed our tent body zippers the first time in 2015 for $35 (including return shipping). I don't know what they did, but they didn't replace the zippers. That bought us 4 more trips before the problems started again, and then we sent it in a 2nd time after our 2016 trips. They said they couldn't fix it, bit would sell us a replacement tent body for $107 (including return shipping). The zippers on that 2016 tent body were doing fine through this spring (2019) when the tub/bottom got really sticky - all the time. All of the other tent pieces and the rest of the tent body were fine. BA asked us to send everything in for them to look at, which we did. Yesterday I got an email and shipping notice from BA saying they're sending us a new complete, latest generation Copper Spur HV UL 2 tent & footprint for free.

Regarding the NEMO fixing the Dagger 2 & 3 tent floor issue, judging by NEMO's letter I don't know. Here's the letter dated April 18, 2019 that NEMO emailed to me last week:

Image

It says "Only purchases made between January and April of 2019 are subject to this manufacturing concern." But the letter was written in April. Also the ID method described was to identify if it was a 2019 Dagger: "2019 Daggers can be identified by specific lot #’s listed on the back of the instructions label, inside the stuff sack. A 2019 Dagger will have the numbers 19 following the letters VNN as highlighted in example (i.e.-122VNN198161)."

Additionally, a 7/3/19 email NEMO sent to me regarding replacement of our tent says: "We're happy to report that we have fixed the issue and can get you a replacement tent with the correct waterproofing specs. We are expecting these new tents to arrive to us in mid-July." So it sounds like they didn't, as of 7/3/19, have the properly waterproofed tents.


Hi Mike,

Thanks for the thorough response. I've cleaned my BA tent zippers but didn't try any kind of lubricant or zipper cleaner. I just used soap and water. I can give that shot.

It sounds like if I ordered a Nemo Dagger tent right now I'd be rolling the dice on a good water proof tent. I think I'll pass on it.

Paul
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