best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

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best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

Postby gedwood » Sat May 10, 2014 11:24 am

Hi all,
I am planning to make a greenwood shelter to house my pole lathe, shavehorse and table of products ready for my demonstrating at various outdoor shows this summer. This shelter would be pretty much along the lines of the one in Mike Abbotts book 'living woods'. So I have some peeled alder poles ready to form the various A frames.
But I wondering what type of tarp would be most suitable to use? The size of tarp would be around 6mtr x 4 mtrs. Thing is I like the idea of a natural rustle free material so have looked into the idea of using a natural material tarp but the canvas tarp at 6 x 4mtrs weigh around 15kg. As it will be just myself erecting the shelter am thinking this might be too heavy? Or does anyone use this size and weight of tarp on there shelters and is ok to erect by themselves? Or is the polycotton tarp the material of choice for this type of shelter? (or some other tarp material?). I have ony seen the polycotton tarp in small sizes so if anyone has lists of stockists for 6 x 4mtrs that would be very helpful to have. Many thanks in anticipation.

cheers
Ged
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Re: best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

Postby Gary Joynt » Sun May 11, 2014 8:06 am

Gedwood,
I would go with the canvas tarp, especially if you are going with the A frame method of erection. It may weigh quite a bit bit it will certainly be harder wearing than the other materials you mention. It can be easily repaired with a needle and thread and a patch and waterproofed when necessary. You would need to make sure it is completely dry before you put it away otherwise it may rot. It will also weigh more when wet.
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Re: best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

Postby gavin » Sun May 11, 2014 9:10 am

I used to use that A-frame method. Refer Maurice Pyle Woodsmith to buy one of his tarps. I find the A-frame takes FAR too long to put up and take down, esp for one man. The poles are awkward to transport.

Please report back at the end of the summer about how well this worked for you. I find the A-frame very wind-sensitive. I could not risk having mine facing into the wind - it is far too risky.

I am far happier with this: I bought two 3 x 6 meter pop-up gazebos on Ebay like this one. It works very well - you can hang all sorts of stuff from the roof.

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Re: best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

Postby Brian Williamson » Sun May 11, 2014 9:21 am

It's a tricky question. You've got at least three basic choices and they all have their drawbacks.

Canvas looks good and has the eco-advantage of being a natural product. Or does it? From what one hears of cotton growing it's not the most environmentally friendly thing. They are heavy but that shouldn't be a problem as long as you've got your method of erecting well sorted. Because they're thick they block out a lot of light and so can be a little dark inside. If you go for a white one to minimise this, they can easily get stained and discoloured and look rather shabby, And, as Gary says, if you put them away wet they'll rot - and they can take a lot of time (and space) to dry.

IAt the other end of the spectrum are the lightweight polypropylene tarps. I've seen those used very effectively, but they do look like what they are, plastic. They're light and surprisingly strong (worth putting in some extra eyelets though. These tend to be the weak point, so the more the better) but can be noisy in a wind. They're also almost cheap enough to be readily repaceable items and they can be bought off the shelf in standard sizes. You make your shelter to fit the tarp.

Somewhere in between are the heavyweight, lorry-type tarps. They probably weigh as much as the cotton (maybe more?) but won't rot and don't discolour too much. Again, they can be a bit dark if you don't choose a light colour. They are strong and should last for years, and they look better than the polyprop ones. I choose one of these about ten years ago and it's done me well and is still going strong. I can put it up single-handedly (having worked out the system) but it cost me several hundred quid (can't remember how many now). Hopefully it will have paid for the extra cost over a twenty year plus life span.

It's a bit of a 'you pays your money and you takes your choice' thing. It will depend on what you want it to look like; what you can afford; how you are able to store it - etc, etc.

Good luck!

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Re: best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

Postby Brian Williamson » Sun May 11, 2014 9:31 am

Gavin got his response in whilst I was writing mine!

He makes a couple of good points for you to consider.

The poles are definitely cumbersome to transport; you need a good-sized vehicle.

The gazebo type cover probably offers a better selling/display type area (having sides is a big advantage in wet, windy weather.

Gazebos are quicker to put up, though I've never really found it a problem with my A-frame.

Wind is a problem with all types of tentage. I've seen gazebos picked-up and blown across show grounds. I do have all sorts of extra guy-ropes available for my A-frame (the cross pole at the front of the awning in particular benefits from a guy at each end) but I've never had a problem (though I've often been worried!). Make yourself some big pegs and have plenty of spare cordage is my advice.

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Re: best tarp for a pole lathe shelter?

Postby gavin » Sun May 11, 2014 6:15 pm

Brian Williamson wrote:
Wind is a problem with all types of tentage. I've seen gazebos picked-up and blown across show grounds.

Gazebos allow you to fix walls where you want, thus making it less wind-risky.

Brian Williamson wrote:
Make yourself some big pegs and have plenty of spare cordage is my advice.

Hear Hear!
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