TENTSMITHS is the only tent manufacturer to offer tentage with double sewn, flat-felled seams. This technique, while taking longer to construct, offers far stronger seams. We use our seams as a structural “skeleton” for the tent, which, when combined with our generous use of reinforcements, produces a structure able to withstand anything Mother Nature offers. All of our tentage has wall seams that line up with its roof seams. All of our marquees have vertical wall panels and not two or three horizontal panels. This makes the targets we must hit much smaller but it also makes the structure immensely stronger and longer lasting. It takes a great deal more time to do this but we feel it’s worth it and yesterday’s makers must have, also, as every historic tent we have seen was done this way.
A careful look at any TENTSMITH tent will quickly reveal the absence of raw edges. All seams, reinforcements, and edges are finished for long-lasting beauty and strength. Any seam where bias edges meet is over-sewn with a constructed webbing to keep stretch to a minimum. We do sweat the details and pay close attention during design, cutting and construction.
DOORS on most tents, are overlapped six inches and tie inside and out. If the door is a vertical wall, there are ties to secure it to the adjacent pole. Doors can be tied open on most tents. Marquees have a full panel overlap as their doors. At approximately thirty-four inches, this makes for very weatherproof security.
REINFORCEMENTS are placed where we have seen wear. Thirty years of tent making and research has shown that tents seldom wear in their ridges, so why introduce weight, needle holes and the chance for trapped moisture in that area. Abrasion causes wear, so we reinforce a tent’s peaks, door overlaps, stake loops and eaves area, as those are the potential problem spots. We have built thousands of tents. We have had to repair a handful. We’re doing something right!
MUD FLAPS are standard on all tents, except wedge tents, unless specified otherwise. Historically, mud flaps were called sod flaps or “rot cloths”. When placed on the outside of the base of the tent they are known as snow flaps. We use a strip of material double-hemmed on all sides and sewn to the inside bottom walls. This keeps the tent close to the ground and weather tight.
GROMMETS VS. LOOPS. All TENTSMITHS tents use sewn Sunforger Army Duck for both guy loops and stake loops. Grommets are available if you prefer. Loops are more easily replaceable when damaged and do not affect the surrounding areas. We do place grommets in the peaks of tents under construction if you would like your pole pins to pass through your roof. It stands to reason that if you are going to produce the highest quality tents, it is necessary to start with the best quality materials. We do.
TENTSMITHS uses 10.10 ounce Army Duck Canvas. This tightly woven, high thread count fabric is preshrunk for the Marine Industry and factory finished with Sunforger. Sunforger (it’s old trade name was Vivatex) is a baked in, invisible, durable process. A Sunforger finish makes the canvas mildew resistant – an important attribute in a tent that we all know will get packed up wet more than once. Sunforger also transforms the canvas into a water repellent medium. This allows your tent to breathe while keeping the rain outside where it belongs. Yes, you can touch the tent when wet and it will not leak through onto you. Sunforger Army Duck canvas offers the best of the old world and the new, a fabric with the appearance of the past and the livability we demand today.
TENTSMITHS offers every tent we make in a flame resistant finish. This finish is applied to the Sunforger Army Duck and meets the Industrial Fabric Assoc. Tent Spec. CPAI-84 adopted by many states and the Federal Government as the standard. While not making a tent flame proof, it offers a margin of safety previously unavailable in a canvas tent. TENTSMITHS STRONGLY RECOMMENDS THE PURCHASE AND USE OF A FLAME RESISTANT TENT. Some states have mandated the sale of only flame resistant tents to be sold within their borders. A flame resistant fabric does not preclude good judgment when dealing with fires in camps. Always act responsibly around fire, especially in large camps where so many families and worldly goods are at stake.
UNTREATED 10.10 oz. cotton Army duck is available for clients wanting a tent made from completely natural materials with nothing added. Tents made of this untreated fabric will take a bit more care and will be more susceptible to shrinkage.
TENTSMITHS is also able to produce tents with a heavy 13 0z. linen fabric woven for us overseas. It has the color and “hand” of the European tents of bygone eras. We do not offer this material by the yard and tent construction is on a limited basis with details and prices on request.
Our entry into twentieth century tent building has sent us searching for Egyptian cotton. Sporadically available from 3oz. to 8oz., this long staple fiber builds a light, compact, strong, weather resistant tent capable of years of service. Not the best choice for a summer structure but fantastic for dragging on a toboggan across northern Canada.
TENTSMITHS Tent Warranty
All TENTSMITHS tents are warranteed to the original purchaser. If, when you receive or set up the tent, it is not what you expected, return it. No questions asked. We will refund your payment or build you a new, more suitable tent, at your option. Sunforger and Sunforger-flame treated fabric is warranted for three years, the seams and stitching for five.
TENTSMITHS has done repair work on seventeen year old tents that were cared for by their owners. However we have also seen abused and neglected tents that were just a few months old. We do hope that you will take as much responsibility in its ownership as you do in its selection.
TENTSMITHS will always be here to make any repairs necessary and will always treat both you and your tent with respect. We look forward to the opportunity to build you a tent.