Tent? -> Terra Nova Photon 1 or Laser 1 or……?
Does it have to be a tent?
My tarp weighs 270g with bomber pegs and line etc.
I use my bike as the poles!
That said I have a laser photon, in between the two. They only made them for a short time.
If you are 5’6 and antisocial 😉 so you’ll be using it alone then the smaller photon would be fine.
Also look at the alpkit clearance tent. £60!Posted 4 years ago
I’m after a new lighter weight tent than my current Terra Nova Solar Minor – the Solar has done me sterling service and is still in excellent condition with no marks but at 1.8kg i feel the need for a lighter bike-packing tent.
I’ve narrowed it down to a choice of three but i’m willing to be persuaded by others that come in under my self imposed/arbitrary 1kg weight limit, Two Terra Nova tents and a a Six Moons Design as below.
Terra Nova Laser Competition 1 @ .93kg for £330 , looks good – excellent reviews and i don’t think i’ve heard a bad word said about this tent, not the lightest by todays cuben fibre freak tents but a tried and well tested design.
Terra Nova Laser Photon 1 @ .72 kg for £380, again it gets excellent reviews, smaller pack size 35 x 10 cm vs 40 x 12 for the Laser above, slightly smaller in pitched size than the laser but i’m only 5ft 6″ so that’s not a problem, comes with daft hairgrip size 1g titanium pegs which i’d prob ditch for my trusted 5g Ti pegs.
Or my choice has been thrown a curveball by this below…
Six Moon Design Lunar Solo @ .65kg for £199, Tried and trusted by many in the lightweight back packing crowd and the bathtub floor with integrated no-seeum netting should make for less condensation build up due to good airflow. Six Moon designs have a fanatical following but are relatively unknown to myself.
I’m kinda swayed by the Photon purely because i’ve used terra nova tents before and whilst i’ve never had issue to use their customer service or back-up, from what i gather they are excellent to deal with if you do experience any problems, the lunar solo is intriguing whilst also being the cheapest, and backpacking light have good aftersales service, all of them are a helluva whack of cash (even allowing for various online discounts/sales regarding the terra nova’s) but as usual i’m dithering……
Anyone got anything to add?………Posted 4 years ago
I already use the Alpkit rig 7 tarp with the addition of a msr folding pole for structure (1/2 pyramid build) but for the weight of the Alpkit tarp & pole i’d be just as well to carry a lightweight tent and have total security from the elements, i’ve just ordered a six moon design lunar carbon pole from Backpackinglight as an experiment for my tarp which obviously led me to look at the Lunar solo tent.
And yeah….i’m an antisocial shortarse who disappears off into the hills on my own so a small tent is never an issue, i don’t camp well with others 😀
The tarp is great for spring/summer use and pretty secure but once you factor in the weight of a bivvy bag,groundsheet (albeit tyvek) and whatever else the additional weight and bulk soon adds up.
I saw the alpkit clearance tent and thought perhaps i could use that as an outer pitch only but then i had visions of spending a night on the west coast of scotland or up in my local galloway hills and waking up in the morning to find i’d lost a pint of blood to midges so that’s another reason for a fully enclosed tent.
I’ll away and check out the force ten helium’s, cheers sanny.
I’ve had the solar minor for 9 yrs and i tend to take good care of my kit so i’m sure an ultralightweight tent would last me fine.Posted 4 years ago
Hmm, the Vango Force Ten Helium 100 looks like a contender, fair enough it’s not under my self-imposed sub 1Kg weight limit but as it’s self-imposed i guess the addition of 200g extra weight will make sod-all difference in the real world, and it’s available for £159 online – i’ll make my mind up over the weekend……as usual i’ll research it online to the point of getting pissed off and make a totally rash decision based on how i feel about it 😀
Cheers,Posted 4 years ago
I’ve had the Laser Comp for a few years and it’s been fine. IIRC, the Photon is slightly smaller and Cuben. I’ve not used the Photon but have around 50 nights in the Comp.
It’s already pretty small and I can’t imagine spending many multi night tours in it especially in bad weather. If you’re doing mainly 1 or two nights, it’s fine.
As an alternative, the yankee designs (MSR, Big Agnes etc) are as light, quicker to erect and bit more volume inside. The inners are mesh and erect first however so not all good news. I bought a Seedhouse SG2 last year whilst touring and spent ~60 nights in it. It was ace.
IIRC, the Photon was on special at Cotswold recently, £220 springs to mind which may sway you if the offer is still going…
BTW, these days the Vango stuff is definitely at the Millets end of the spectrum. Not the company they once were…Posted 4 years ago
I’ve had the Laser Comp for a few years and it’s been fine. IIRC, the Photon is slightly smaller and Cuben.
Nope, the Ultra is Cuben not the Photon.
BTW, these days the Vango stuff is definitely at the Millets end of the spectrum. Not the company they once were…
Vango and Force 10 are 2 different brands with a common parent company … much like Terra Nova and Wild Country. The Force 10 ridge tent is still available … it’s exactly the same product (slightly refined) that made them the company they once were. 😉Posted 4 years agonikkMember
The Cuben tents are £700+ iirc.
Check out the Tarptent stuff. Very well designed. For the double wall designs, the inner pitches with the outer, or after the outer if you want to do that. Can even be pitched by itself. I am looking at the Moment for double wall at .96kg (poles included, semi-solid inner coming soon), and the Contrail at about .7kg for single wall (no pole included, can possibly be replaced with upside down bike). I’ll prob go for the Moment when the semi-solid inner comes out.ScotRoutes wrote:
I really like the design of the Lunar Solo. I’d been thinking about single-skin tents with netting and that’s almost exactly what I had in mind. I’d love to see one somewhere though – even try it out.
Oh – and remember to add in another 51g for a pole!
What kinda pole do you get for 51 grams? I’d be wary of shelters that rely on hiking poles, alternatives can be very weak, especially if they are light.Posted 4 years agofr0sty125Member
How about something like this http://www.helsport.no/en/product/TENTS/PRO/Ringstind_Superlight_12
A bit bigger than the TN Photon and Comp but still light and tough.Posted 4 years ago
Aaah fair enough on the Photon, thought it was the Cuben one… The Vango branded kit I’ve seen has been aimed at the DofE market, not something that interests me. Good stuff if the Force 10 brand is betterer quality (it wouldn’t be difficult).
If the OP does go for Terra Nova, don’t forget they do a 30% trade in deal on their stuff. Get yourself a £5 festival pop up and trade in against a new tent. It’s still worth having a good look around price wise. F&T have a sale every now and then and Laser Comps are often around £160.Posted 4 years ago
still S8tannorm : i’ve used the barebones site before for reviews and stuff and they’ve been pretty spot on, cheers for the link to the lunar review – i forget to check the site for such a review.
So?, lunar solo vs force ten helium vs Terra Nova….
After consideration and reading more reviews i’m swayed by the lightweight Lunar Solo from backpacking light, if i ever had a problem with it i’m sure they’d be helpful but i’m still not 100% decided yet.Posted 4 years ago
Aahhh, got it ta.
Have you been in one? Be a bit careful if not. I had a Saunders Spacepacker that was similar in that the inner roof was quite steep over where your face/feet were. This meant you got a face full of material and your feet were up against the inner at the other end getting damp when it was a bit wet (rain outside and/or condensation). Not a deal breaker but anything that can give you a bit more face/foot room is helpful especially for multi night.
The Yankee style tents are fully tensioned using bendy poles and the Lasers have little stubby end poles to give a bit more internal volume. Might be worth thinking about.Posted 4 years ago
Somafunk … how tall are you ? The Lunar has lots of space inc’ headroom and porch, so as long as you’re not a giant you should be able to sit up, get dressed, etc without causing yourself lasting damage 😉
Using the 3 extra guy points will make a big difference to head / foot room which as Boblo says can be an issue at times. In reality it’s not bad without them, certainly no worse than the Helium or TN.Posted 4 years ago
Damitamit – it your laser comp the updated version?, how much would you be asking for it? – the cheapest i’ve found it anywhere is £230ish which is damn decent compared to some prices. My email in profile if you don’t wish to post on here.
still S8tannorm : I’m a 5ft 6″ shortarse so i can fit into a surprisingly small space. 😀Posted 4 years ago
Aaah the Spacepacker… Mine was an old friend; lejog, Portugal e2e, the Marilyn’s etc etc. I sold mine only last year as I’d bought the Seedhouse whilst away in the US. I only got that as my Tadpole decided to self destruct at the first hint of American rain. I sent it home in disgrace and those nice people at NF replaced it. I then had an n+1 style embarrassment of tents 🙂Posted 4 years agodanielgrovesMember
I’ve got a laser… done two week holidays in it int he past and I can’t rate it enough.
They are a tad flappy in high winds, but I’ve never had mine feel like it wanted to take off, or leak, despite camping in gale-force winds in the Langdale Pikes with enough rain to have rivers that was ankle deep on the way up to be knee deep by the morning.
I will say however, mine is a standard Laser, not the competition. Only because I’m longer than the competition so check it’s length against your height (I’m 6’3″).Posted 4 years agolastyMember
Laser-lite over here ..
Superb tent – more robust (4 season)than the comp which matey used until it ripped in high winds – I was parked at the side of him and mine was fine, even with a stream trickling underneath which developed overnight..
Doesn’t get used these days so £160 posted before ebay … includes footprint.
lasty40AThotmailDOTcomPosted 4 years ago
still s8tannorm : Doh….i’ve just realised that BearBones Bikepacking is your Blog, i really should pay more attention – good blog btw……
I’m still undecided, i’ve been trying to weigh up the pros and cons of each and i’ve even got as far as printing off their specs and going through them all side by side, ideally i’d have them all in a field and set them up side by side but that’s never going to happen….
Cheers for the offers of 2nd hand/used tents but i’d rather buy new for ease of use if anything goes wrong with them, i’ve had my Terra Nova Solar for 9yrs from new and i’ve wrote in my camping diaries exactly how many days/nights/conditions i’ve used it for (yeah…..possibly a bit anal) 😉
My order of choice so far using the weight vs price vs reviews vs gut feeling for my intended uses :
Lunar Solo @ £175 (i have £25 of backpackinglight discount)
Terra Nova Photon @ £269 on sports direct (cheers for the link, dunno who sent me it?)
Not much change there then eh? 🙄 , makes you wonder why i posted up asking for advice but i genuinely did look at all the tents mentioned so thanks for taking the time to post, perhaps others will find the varied choices listed above useful and i was almost swayed by the Force Ten Helium but i realised it’s near enough twice the weight of the Lunar Solo and as i’m building my ultralight ideal bikepacking set-up i’d end up annoyed over the extra 600g weight which sounds ludicrous but that’s the way it is.
Hmm, I’ll sleep on it t’night and may call Bob/Rose t’morn for a quick chat bout the Lunar vs Photon, I’ve already got the Lunar carbon pole for my Alpkit tarp so that’s another nail in the coffin against the Photon i guess, not to mention the extra £100 cost.
Cheers…….my brain hurts…….Posted 4 years ago
In an idea world i’d buy them all, set them up and see how easy they are to pitch, compare actual packed sizes, spend a night in each, etc…etc…..however my bank balance would be severely depleted and it’s a bit unfair to the retailers as i’d unpack them, etc then send them back for a refund. My neighbours think i’m a bit odd already as i’ve been practising various tarp shelters/guy lines/poles in the back garden and bivvying out in the torrential thunderstorms we had a while ago to test the strange designs and shapes for weather proofness.
Scotroutes : you just want me to beta-test it for you….. 😀Posted 4 years ago
After a day of dithering and working through just about every review online and checking out the Tents mentioned by others in this thread i’ve ordered a Six Moons Design Lunar Solo, i’ll post up pics of it when it arrives and i’ve got it erected, i’m sure i’ll be impressed with it, however i’m sure they’ll be things i feel could be improved but overall i decided that for the price/weight/positive reviews/back up service it fits all my needs….now where’s our summer buggered off to?Posted 4 years ago
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