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Joined: Jan 2010
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I ran onto this site "googling" Tipi tarps and I have to say that i love your guys disccusions! I can't tell you how many of these conversations I have had with my buddies over a beer or around a fire.
My questions is this, Is there a significant differance in set up time and getting everything sturdy between a square tipi (mega light) or a hexagon (shangra la) or an oval like the titanium goat. They all seem to have their own fans here. I have buddies that have ti goat tipis and the are great, if you find a nice 10 foot circle and get every stake set perfect. I am sure this is a common issue but I have heard that the square is much easier and I have not heard if the hexagon is more like the square or the oval in set up time.

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Don't have any experience with a hexagon. In general, the ovals shed wind better and the squares are A LOT easier to set up.

I just set up a Kifaru tipi for the first time this past weekend in a blowing snowstorm while wearing snowshoes. It was a 12 man and I had the directions printed out. It was pretty straightforward, with no missteps on my part. I could see how with practice it wouldn't be that big of a deal to throw one up. It took about 45 minutes to get that big daddy up under those conditions though. You have to get quite a few stakes in to get the stability and geometry you need.

On the other hand, for smaller shelters and taking down / putting up every night, I think I still prefer square, which I've got a lot of experience with (megamid, sl4). Put in your four stakes, throw up the center pole, done. No setbacks to measure, no walking back and forth from side to side to get your setbacks even, etc. Maybe 2 minutes. From there, you can add additional perimeter stakes if you need or want them, but you can do it at your leisure from the security of a shelter that's already set up.

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I have stayed in a Kifaru and really liked the sturdy nature of the tipi...they are just a little expensive...can anyone give me the names of these oval and square tipi's and a website to view them? Can you put a Stove in either the round or square tipi? I surely don't mean to hijack this thread!

Thanks

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Black Diamond makes the Mega Light

Go-Lite Makes the Shangri-La. I have the three man and I love it. Very easy to pitch and use.

Titanium Goat makes an oval style.

Welcome to the fire.


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GoLite now has a 5 man 90 sq ft tipi that looks pretty interesting for only 2.9 pounds.

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My experience is the same as evanhill's. If it's raining and I need to throw the tent up fast, a mega-mid or mega-lite can't be beat. But the tipi is a lot more weather-worthy.



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Deflave,
I have been eyeing the Shangri-La 3! I would like to know first if you can fit two poeple and a stove or should I be thinking about the 5? Also hows is the set up of the 3 and have you had it out in any weather?

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Exactly what I was thinking, Wyo. I have wanted one of those 3 man tents for a long time. For 6 more ounces the 5 man adds a lot of floor and head room though.

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For quick setup you have to look at the Appy Trails tents. Three minutes for two guys, and the five man (three, really) will take a stove adapter and weighs in at 1 pound 11 ounces plus pole. appytrails.com ... It's like a tipi combined with a footbox.


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Not alot of experience... I just bought a goLite Shangri la 5. I'm 6'3" and the length of the Shangri la 3 was just a bit short considering the tapered walls/condensation,etc.
$350 inc free floor[which I won't use much] on Campsaver.com

Campsaver is the only site I saw which has the footprints of these GoLites. Seriously considered the Vertex 5 but the Catenary design more tapered walls gave it a slightly less workable footprint for my needs. As mentioned above, this will hhelp with wind and probably less flapping but I needed the space.

The weight of the Mtn Hdw. Kiva killed it for me. The Sierra Designs Origami-cheap $180- may also be worth a look.


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Things turn out best for people who make the best of the way things turn out-Art Linkletter
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I was confused about the new SL5 until I had a chat with a support person at golite. The SL5 is identical in size to the old SL4 (90sf). The nest is different, and the door is a little different to interface with the new nest configuration, but that's it. If you're not using the nest, the SL5 is basically an SL4. FWIW, I wouldn't go more than 4 guys without a stove in one.

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Don't waste money on an Origami. I've got a O-4. The pole bent under a snow load that would have been fine in any of the others, and the lightweight zipper needs replacing after a paltry amount of use.

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Wyotrad, the SL3 is going to be pretty snug with two guys and a stove. It can be done though, but you'd better bring along a gear tarp. I've spent a fair amount of time in my SL3 solo, and for one guy, its a palace.

I'm saving my pennies for an SL4


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I made my own square pyramid like the shangri-la 4 out of 1.1oz silnylon and it is very easy and fast to set up. I also made a very large tipi similar to kifaru's (mine is 25 feet across and 13 feet tall). On my first real trip with the big one, from the time it was in the bag to it being set up was probably 15 minutes or so.

I would have to say that if I had to set up a square or tipi style shelter of the same size, the sqare would be faster, but not by much. I do think the tipi would be more stable in high winds, but I have had my square tipi out in a winter storm overnight in the back yard to test when I was sure it would be shredded in the morning but it was still standing and not damaged at all.

One thing to note with a square pyramid, is that it is more difficult to get the middle edges all the way tight to the ground than a tipi style. It always seems that the middle of each side is a little off the ground. This could let a little windblown snow in if you are winter camping.

I don't think you could go wrong with either style. If I had to pick one, it would be the oval style tipi similar to the kifaru do to the better wind stability and the tighter pitch to the ground.

Good luck

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Originally Posted by wyotradhunter
Deflave,
I have been eyeing the Shangri-La 3! I would like to know first if you can fit two poeple and a stove or should I be thinking about the 5? Also hows is the set up of the 3 and have you had it out in any weather?


It would depend on size of the individuals and what not but I think it could be done. As Dan said you would definitely want some sort of tarp for your gear though. But if you are wanting something dedicated for two dudes, I'd get something mo' bigger. My son and I share mine regularly but he's only eight.

I have had it in some schitty rain storms and I had no problems at all. It's also been in some horrible winds and I had zero problems.

Really dig the Shangri-La.


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i have both a mega mid and a tipi. well 3 tipis. everything said is true about them. however it is like compareing apples to oranges. the tipi is so much better. i added a foot of nylon around the bottom of the megamid trying to seal it, that adds wt and barely seals out the wind. if you cant take time to drive the pegs in the tipi you are just being picky. the number of pegs necessary to seal a MM and make it bomb proof would be equal to a 4 man tipi, or close. the megaid does not get used much.

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I also have used the megas & Kivas and down the line over the years. They do go up quick but like was said above I'd take a properly pitched tipi over them any day when the [bleep] hits the fan. Better wind shedding and more pins holding it down.

I came real close to grabbing a Go-lite the other day. Steep and Cheap had a Shangrila 3 come up for 100 bucks. I just don't need another one.....but what a deal.

With a little understanding and practice the tipi pitching is no big deal. I have my Kifaru 8 man set-up down to well under 5 minutes about the same as my mountaineering tents. With the liner already tied in I can go inside and put the stove together later if I want.

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B Lance: MH made a Kiva (4.6#) and a Kiva Lite(mine is just under 3#).

It appears that MH has discontinued both.

The Kiva Lite is comparable to the SL3. The Kiva Lite weighs 8oz more but is 6 sq ft larger and has a snazzy little window :-)

The nicest thing about the SL is they seem to frequently be on sale.

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I saw a Mountain Hardwear tipi prototype that was used in AK - had a diagonal window. It looked good except they used their mango fabric for it which doesn't work for me. I talked to them and was told they have no plans on producing them for sale.

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My Kiva Lite is "mango".

Clashes with everything I own except a Marmot Twilight tent. There must have been a surplus of that stuff in China.

My hunting buddies made fun of it until it started raining and they were huddled together in their undersized 2 man tent.

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