French Army F1 Tents: User Experiences

Discussion in '5col Survival Supply' started by andy.t, Nov 1, 2017.

  1. andy.t

    andy.t Guide Vendor

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    @Luzster and I were talking about his experiences using the F1 tents, and I thought it would be helpful if we started a thread where folks who have these can share their experiences. Doesn't have to be a tent you bought from us; if you have an F1 tent from any source, we're interested to hear what works and doesn't work, and what you like and don't like about it.

    Luzster specifically is looking for seam seal and waterproofing recommendations. I haven't had to waterproof a tent before, so I don't feel qualified making a recommendation. It would be helpful if we had some manufacturer care & maintenance info, but I haven't found anything. @Panzer @Gramp Camp @Prairiewolf @Longhunter1761 @Kimber22 @Angelgutter @tcshooter @seacapt @Forestree @Nonc-Tobe if you guys want to chime in with your experiences, that would be great.

    I will also post Panzer's Youtube reviews here. We've posted these elsewhere on the site, but I think it makes sense to include them here as well.





     
  2. Huey

    Huey The Lurker Supporter

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    Solo with gear I love it. I have the one with a door at each end and no screen on them. I did drill a hole in the plastic disc of each pole so I can use a stake through it and the middle tie down to help hold it in place.

    Also used some shock cord for for the front and back tie down to help if I do bump into it, it goes back without adjustment.

    Just used it in 26deg and woke up with a lot of condensation inside. No biggy as back home I used a box fan for a couple hours blowing though it. No poles need as the fan inflated the tent.

    At 6'3" I had no issue size wize and in fact it sure is going to be my main solo tent.
     

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  3. Panzer

    Panzer Prepared Wanderer Supporter Bushclass I

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    I should chime in with how I treated mine. Seam sealing is pretty easy. I just use a standard seam sealer you would find at any sporting good store. Gear Aid makes a good sealer. I just work in into the top seam, and any other edges working the sealer in and letting it dry.
     
  4. andy.t

    andy.t Guide Vendor

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    It's worth mentioning that these tents really need a ground cloth. Lots of folks use Tyvek for this. @Luzster also found these on Amazon and seems pleased with the one he got.
     
  5. Swamp Pirate

    Swamp Pirate Lifetime Supporter Lifetime Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Thanks for sharing @andy.t, may have to pick one up.
     
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  6. tcshooter

    tcshooter Supporter Supporter

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    I will have a review after my trips this Winter. I plan on using it this year.

    I usually go on at least one 2-3 week canoe/camping/hunting/fishing trip every year in December/January. Basically I go for a couple weeks and leave with just 3 days of food and water with me and see how much I have when I return. Try to live off the land as best I can. So far I have done really well and only ate the ramen noodles and one can of chicken last year to add some variety to the diet. Past that it was catfish, bluegill, venison, duck, and squirrel.
    Since I usually don't stay anywhere more than one night I either hang a hammock or just put a tarp over me and flop under it in my MSS. Like what the photo shows from one of my trips.

    This year I hope to spend a day to two at a time in a couple places to do more fishing. I also got a new water conveyance to try out as well. Photo included as well. I think I can attach a little tub to pull behind on set rods that swivel and can carry more than enough gear for a few weeks in the woods and on the rivers.


    Canoe Camping.jpg

    IMG_0217.JPG
     
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  7. Angelgutter

    Angelgutter Supporter Supporter

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    image.jpg
    Evening fellas!
    Like most things in life the description is always harder than the actual process!
    I’m no expert but the few times ive sealed a tent ive used 100% silicon from Lowe’s. The product above was what came with my kifaru tipi from the factory....it’s nothing more than just clear window sealant available from any big box store.
    It’s as easy as setting up your tent, or tipi, squeezing a bit on your finger and rubbing it into the seems. Some seal the inside, some seal the outside but the effect is the same. It is slightly visible once completed so if your concerned with looks it may be best to seal from the inside. It’s not necessary to actually run a bead, just rubbing in on the length of the seam gets the job done! A tube like the one above would do a mile of seams, good to keep in the bag if you slack off and get caugh in the rain. Once a year should keep you nice and dry! I’m sure there is a more in depth process but this has always worked for me......
    I also use a thick sil nylon tarp for a ground cloth
    Hope this helps
     
  8. Angelgutter

    Angelgutter Supporter Supporter

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    Also tyvac, ie house wrap, usually comes in a roll about 8’ wise and around 150’ long. It can be rather expensive but can usually be found on job sites as scrap before siding goes up for free.
    I have a good bit left over from building my shop if anyone is in need. Just pm me with your address and size and I’ll do my best to get it to ya! It’s extremely light and durable so shipping should not be an issue.....
    image.jpg
     
  9. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    Issue I had was during the rain storm we had last Friday night/Saturday morning. I didn't seal the seams on the tent before I took it out, so that is my fault. But, I was getting water seeping in through the top of the tent. I was looking to get a sealant, similar to what some people use on a tarp. Looking for recommendations for this tent. Love this tent, the size and such. Not looking to return it or anything. Just want to seal it and keep dry next time it rains!!

    ETA: It wasn't condensation that was causing the water.
     
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  10. TAHAWK

    TAHAWK Guide

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    Comparing this single-wall tent to a tarp implies equal ventilation. Unlikely. I my area (NE OH/NE PA) these are Condensation City. But some like them even so, carrying sponges to sop up puddles and squeeze outside.

    Keepshotting has "used" for $50.
    Swiss Link has "new" for $50, as does Epic for $54
    Major Surplus has some unknown quality for $30 (Alas, not called "Commando," just "Ground Forces," which is correct.) and theirs may be cotton canvas from the weight (9.5 lbs)
    Amazon $56 +7.95 S&H "brand new"
    varusteleka has them for $37 +S&H as with all others except those selling them for over $70.00. "Free shipping" after you have paid for it.

    I wonder if someone clever could fabricate an inverted V shaped front pole set-up for convenience of entry and exist. Imagine it's pouring rain.

    Prior thread: https://bushcraftusa.com/forum/threads/french-military-tent.173974/
     
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  11. andy.t

    andy.t Guide Vendor

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    The ones they're selling don't have the zippered mesh inner doors. They just have the nylon outer door flap.

    The ones we sell here in our vendor forum do have those zippered mesh doors, so that you can maintain ventilation and keep the bugs out. It's a big functional difference.

    I think you could use trek poles to make a V-shaped entrance. There's a nice reinforced pocket at the peak that would hold them together, and you could stick the feet in the ground. The guy line attaches to the tent rather than the poles, so it seems like this could work pretty well. Panzer mentioned that it's a hassle to work your way around the front pole in the basic configuration.

    Luke from The Outdoor Gear Review did a review of an F1 tent from Keepshooting. You can see that below. That tent included fewer stakes, no guy lines, and it doesn't have mesh doors. He says the price on those is $40, but I guess they raised their price since then.

     
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  12. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    Ok, so let's ask this way....

    What do y'all use to waterproof your tarps aside from seam seal?

    I am not comparing this tent to a tarp. Yes, I need to seal the seams.

    But, I want to add some waterproofing to the tent itself. THe issue I had the other night was not condensation. The problem I had was water seeping in through the seams and through the tent itself.
     
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  13. racetrack

    racetrack Scout

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    From elk camp with the youngest
    [​IMG]KIMG0117 by , on Flickr

    [​IMG]KIMG0121 by , on Flickr

    The weatherman was threatening snow and rain showers, so adding a field tarp seemed wise. The tarps were suspended a couple inches over the tents rather than just draped over.
     
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  14. bartman

    bartman Supporter Supporter

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    Seam grip by McNett. Just rub the product into any seams that need it. This stuff is the bomb diggity..:).

    Bart
     
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  15. PeterPNL

    PeterPNL Tracker

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    Got my tent today :). Will try to set it up one of these days
     
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  16. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    SO I finally was able to get the tent out and dried from the other weekend. Set it up and used Coleman's seam seal on every seem I could find. I also got a spray on water repellent from Kiwi that I used on all surfaces of the tent. LEt it set out for a couple of hours to dry. Now, just waiting for more rain, or going to take the hose to it to check on the water-proofing!

    Oh, got a piece of Tyvex coming from @Angelgutter as well to put under the tent. Figured I could cut it to be an exact fit and have no concerns if it gets ruined or whatnot. Going to use the blanket I purchased inside the tent just as a secondary barrier and also use it as a ground cloth when out with the hammock.
     
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  17. andy.t

    andy.t Guide Vendor

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    Just for kicks, I tried using trek poles to set up an A-frame at the entrance to the tent, so that the regular tent pole isn't right in the center of the door. It seems to work great.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  18. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    Oh....oh.....oh.... I like that!!!
     
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  19. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    Actually have mine setup outside right now. Slept in it last night and sleeping in it again tonight. Might just have to give that a try. Also out a 10x10 tarp over the tent in A frame style to see if it helps with condensation.
     
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  20. andy.t

    andy.t Guide Vendor

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    I had my poles set at about 55-1/4" in length, and I stuck the feet into the ground a little to keep them from kicking out and collapsing the front of the tent.

    Can you orient the door of the tent to catch the prevailing breeze, such as it is? Looks like maybe 8mph right now in Pensacola, which isn't much to work with.

    Tonight you're working with humidity of about 60%. Consider also that you're adding about 1/5 of a quart of moisture to the air inside your tent through respiration while you sleep.
     
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  21. Panzer

    Panzer Prepared Wanderer Supporter Bushclass I

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    Great idea!
     
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  22. TAHAWK

    TAHAWK Guide

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    That would help with leaks or solar radiation. I suppose keeping cold rain off the tent top might even help with condensation - but not as much as ventilation.
     
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  23. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    This is what I got going on tonight with the tent.

    20171111_173814.jpg 20171111_173800.jpg 20171111_173750.jpg
     
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  24. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    I don't have trecking poles so I used some walking sticks I had lying around. I really like it this way. That center pole is a bit of an annoyance.
     
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  25. Luzster

    Luzster I'm a little Tea Pot. Or Something. Supporter

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    The walking sticks didn't last very long. I didn't lash them to the tent or anything so they were basically free standing. I think with a small spike on those trecking poles they would stay in place much better.
     
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  26. andy.t

    andy.t Guide Vendor

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    That's kind of what I figured. Unless you can really anchor those feet, they'll kick out on you. The top side didn't seem like it would be a problem, though, because they fit nicely into that reinforced pocket at the peak of the tent.
     

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