Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

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Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby bluewombat » Sun 01 Mar, 2009 2:17 pm

Just thought I would share my thoughts on first trip using my Aarn Pacer 2 Tent. We were out for 6 days and I am really happy with this tent. At just over 2.25 kgs including the walking poles that act as the central supports on the tent it is reasonably light for a 2 man tent. I am not tall at 172cm but there was plenty of room below my feet even with a pile of food bags and other assorted mess. Very comfortable for 2 which is a good thing because we spent the best part of 14 hours in it at one stage due to very heavy rain. How heavy, 50 mm plus howling gale accompanied by thunder and lightning for about 3 hours. Not one drip of water got in, our packs stowed one at each end under the outer shell also remained dry apart from minor water splashes coming under the edges. Integral pitch so goes up in about 2 minutes (comes down even faster especially when it is still hosing down). Excellent stability and strength is gained with the walking poles as the central supports, I have no doubt would cope with heavy snow given how well it pitches. A really well thought out tent.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Darren » Sun 01 Mar, 2009 7:19 pm

G'Day Bluewombat
Did you happen to to take any picks of your tent while it was up?
thanks
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby corvus » Sun 01 Mar, 2009 7:46 pm

With respect ,many of my walking companions dont use Walking Poles how would they pitch this Tent.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby bluewombat » Sun 01 Mar, 2009 8:50 pm

Hi Corvus
I dont use walking poles either, I bought some collapsible ones specifically for this tent. Why, because I was looking for a light bombproof tent, and I like this concept, plus I will find other uses for the poles over time, the first one will be to make a little fitting to turn a pole into a monopod mound for my camera. One of my walking companions used poles for the first time on this recent trip, he has 2 dodgy knees and found them particularly good coming down the button grass sections in the Cuvier valley.

Darren, I did take some photos of the tent while it was up, but have not put them on my computer yet, will do so this week and will upload one on this thread
cheers
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby gorby » Sun 01 Mar, 2009 9:00 pm

mmmm,tent $500 plus walking poles(not supplied with tent but needed) $190 total $690

sounded good up to the point of needing the walking poles to pitch it.I would worry how to put it up if I dropped a pole into a raging torrent or down a crevice,I noticed they have a wrist strap but sometimes #hit happens :(

Would like to know if they could be substituted with a regular pole, any internal pics ?
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby bluewombat » Mon 02 Mar, 2009 6:46 pm

P1000945 (Large).JPG

So here is a pic of the pacer tent , the yellow one. The other tent is a sierra clip flash. In the centre of the pacer you can see one of the two walking poles which fit into a short section of 1cm diameter ridge pole. Because walking poles are adjustable you can tension the center section very easily. Any adjustable walking poles will work, they dont have to be the expensive pacer poles, I suspect modified ski poles would work as might many other things in a pinch. At the time this was taken the wind was still gusting very hard as you can see. What you cannot see well in the picture is the two large vents on the center ridge, which did not leak despite the very heavy rain due to some neat design ideas. I did not pay recommended retail ($500) for this tent a bit of internet shopping and I quickly got it for significantly less.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Darren » Tue 03 Mar, 2009 6:44 am

Thanks for that
They look like a very stable shelter with their dual catenary ridgelines. With it being low at both ends how is the headroom when you are sleeping? It looks like a more stable version of a terra nova laser (similar footprint).I know you wouldn’t be able to tell on your trip but how do you think it would go if it was warm?
One more thing, Do you think you could cook in the vestibule
Thanks
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Franco » Tue 03 Mar, 2009 7:46 am

Some comments from a tent fanatic.
The Pacer are a very clever design, the best trekking pole supported tents I have seen if you take in consideration the well deserved 4 season tag. There are several designs that are much lighter and/or larger, and or better suited for warm weather but none can match the strenght of the Aarns. The trick is the 1 cm ridge connecting pole that Bluewombat has mentioned. Just to give an idea of the strength of that set up, a lot of trekking poles on the market can hold my weight (68kg) without bending. A 9mm tent pole section will bend at around 10 kg vertical pressure . Most tent poles are thinner than that. A 9mm pole is roughly 30% stronger than an 8mm version .
I did some experiments with two standard 8mm something poles strapped together, that will work but are still about 1/3rd of the strength of my trekking poles.
Bluewombat mentioned the other advantage of trekking poles, being able to adjust the length (particularly quick with the Black Diamond Flick Lock). That helps a lot because silnylon stretches when wet and or cold and shrinks the other way. So you can set the Pacer up and just adjust the poles before you go to bed.
For warmer weather my guess is that there is enough air flow to cope with that. Note the distance between the inner and the fly.
Still "guessing" here, but I don't see the Laser as a competitor as far as wind resistance and even further away when it comes to snow loading.
And yes, I am familiar with the Akto/Laser family, that is why I am getting the Tarptent Scarp 1.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Darren » Tue 03 Mar, 2009 3:20 pm

Franco
My comparisons on the laser were only on the tents profile and space, i.e raised centre to tapered ends not its storm worthiness. My current shelter, lunar solo, suffers from the problems you describe. As a non pole user I take an 8mm carbon fibre pole that flexes badly under winds or light snow. It also reduces the flexibility in pitching a little.
That’s great to hear that you are getting a scarp 1 as it’s on my short list as a new bad conditions tent for me. Ill be looking forward to hearing your reviews.
Thanks
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Franco » Tue 03 Mar, 2009 5:52 pm

Hi Darren
The Laser comes with its pole at around 300g under the Pacer 2 without the poles, so it isn't really a fair comparison nor was it designed to be a 4 season shelter anyway.
I was trying to make the point that the Aarn is heavier than some but for a 4 season shelter, lighter than most.
Note that the 09 Laser will come with two doors, same as the Tarptent Scarp .
As for the pole, often I have posted the point about the difference between using the accessory SMD/Tarptent pole and a trekking pole. I have copped some criticism, but between me and you at least one of the designers of those brands agrees with me.( as well as reality)
Here are some shots that I took to show what happens when I put the Contrail under the tension that I normally do ( I have it up nice and really taut, not that flaccid look you often see) , the next is with two poles taped together. Still not as strong as a trekking pole but getting there. And that is my suggestion, get another pole, 60-80g for the 3 segments needed.
Your Lunar Solo will behave the same way.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Darren » Tue 03 Mar, 2009 7:08 pm

G'Day Franco
Not a bad idea. I actually got another pole with my gatewood cape so i might give that a go if it looks bad. I bought my wife some alkpit CF poles that are very nice but I just can’t convince myself I like them so I will keep going without.
The next time you need to feed your tent fetish you could try a light wave t0 ultra, I wouldn’t mind a review on one of those too :D
Thanks Mate
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Franco » Tue 03 Mar, 2009 8:27 pm

I did exchange some correspondence with Carol McDermott at Lightwave (about the t0) , he is the designer there, originally from New Zealand.
That was before Henry Shires became interested in 4 season tents. I have liked the Akto design for some time and now that some of the weak parts of that design have been addressed I am happy to give the Scarp a go. Not saying that the TT version is unnecessarily better, but different in a nice way. Anyway I have met Aarn Tate and he is a great guy and the Pacers are a very nice alternative that more people down there should have a look at.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby under10kg » Fri 06 Mar, 2009 11:33 am

I use a aarn pacer tent with pacer poles.
If I did break the poles, one could use a straight branch.
I did break one pole on snow slopes in NZ a few years ago.
Most tents uses curved poles and this would be difficult to find a bendy branch.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Son of a Beach » Fri 06 Mar, 2009 11:52 am

under10kg wrote:Most tents uses curved poles and this would be difficult to find a bendy branch.


In many areas of Tasmania we have dogwood trees, and I've found that the branches from dogwoods make excellent substitutes for bendy hoop poles in tunnel tents. Any tree with long slender branches would do the job, but I agree that in some locations such trees (or any trees!) may not be around.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby abowen » Thu 28 May, 2009 2:03 pm

Hi BlueWombat,
I like the idea of the Aarn Pacer tent. Clever way to utilise walking poles. I am looking at the Pacer 1 at the moment, but was wondering if you might be able to answer a couple of questions. It is hard to gauge the actual feel of the tent without seeing it.
What is the tub floor like? Does it need a groundsheet to protect it a bit and to get more life out of it? Or is it fairly good quality? By my measure, the Macpacs and the WE tents have the best tub floor material that I have seen so far.
What are the minimum number of pegs needed for the Pacer 2. From their website it indicates that the pacer 2 needs a minimum of 6 pegs and a minimum of 4 for the pacer 1. Are these used just to fix the ends? From your pics it looks like you have used more than the recommended.
Does the vestibule entrance have a double zip with storm flap? I like the porch pole - nice touch!
If you can help me out with the above information it would be much appreciated.
Thanks
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Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Bluegum Mic » Wed 01 Jun, 2011 12:58 pm

Hi Bluewombat and any others who own this tent :-)

I was just wondering if anyone can give a little bit of long term use insight into this tent. As a pole user I really like the design (though my poor BD poles are already being used to hold my SL3 up so they get quite a work out). I was just wondering how it holds up in fowl weather, in particular above snowline use. Does it shed snow and wind well?

Cheers

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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby jeremy089786 » Sun 05 Jun, 2011 8:31 pm

Hi Mic,

I have had one for a couple of years now and am generally happy with it. Everything is great except I only now use it for snow trips (which so far it has handled well) as I now have a hexamid+inner.

If you are around Sydney, you are welcome to come and have a look some time.

Cheers,

Jeremy.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby ninjapuppet » Sun 05 Jun, 2011 9:58 pm

jeremy, are you the gear dude at syd uni bushwalk club?

just that i saw a hexamid in the blue moutanins once, and a friend of a friend of a friend... etc said the gear dude at syd uni club had one.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby jeremy089786 » Mon 06 Jun, 2011 8:24 am

Hi Ninjapuppet,

Indeed that was probably my hexamid, where abouts did you see it?

Cheers,

Jeremy.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby bluewombat » Tue 07 Jun, 2011 8:10 pm

Hi Andrew and Mic
sorry it has taken a little while to answer your questions.
My general principle is never to trust the base of my tent to the vagaries of Tassie scrub, so although the floor tub seems solid I use a Tyvek footprint. The fly zip is a single zip and no storm flap (well not on my one at least, perhaps they have upgraded over the last 2 years). Not sure a storm flap is really necessary as the fly is a looong way from the inner at this point. I use 8 pegs but if you didnt need to use all of the space under the fly ends you could get away with less. The configuration in the picture was used for an absolute howler of a rain storm.
So far it has proven very adept at shedding rain, even of the absolutely hissing down variety. It has not been out in really heavy snow, so cant comment on shedding there but it did not have any issues with a light fall. I suspect you may get a little collection at either end of the fly where the cross poles go. Wind does not trouble it at all, even really windy wind. It is bombproof and you feel very confident inside it.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby roba9988 » Wed 08 Jun, 2011 11:32 am

Will have to check out Aarn tents, I'd only heard about their packs previously but sounds like a great system to use hiking poles
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Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Bluegum Mic » Sun 12 Jun, 2011 6:13 am

Thanks for the response guys. This sounds like a great little tent. I really like the concept of it. Shame stores don't stock it to have a play with it. Jeremy thanks for your offer to look at your pacer. I might take you up on the offer one day.
Cheers
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby north-north-west » Sun 19 Jun, 2011 12:42 pm

roba9988 wrote:Will have to check out Aarn tents, I'd only heard about their packs previously but sounds like a great system to use hiking poles

Except that poles can be lost or broken while walking (I've done both) and you're pretty well stuffed if either happens.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby icemancometh » Sat 14 Jan, 2012 10:09 pm

Get some of the BD poles...slipped in the mud coming downhill...80kg +20kg pack at the time, climbing, landed on my butt, pole didn't so much as bend. The flicklocks are great too.

Oh and the Pacer 2's are $299 right now
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Lizzy » Sun 15 Jan, 2012 5:39 am

icemancometh wrote:Get some of the BD poles...slipped in the mud coming downhill...80kg +20kg pack at the time, climbing, landed on my butt, pole didn't so much as bend. The flicklocks are great too.

Oh and the Pacer 2's are $299 right now

On my last trip to Tassie I slipped (&am now spending 7 weeks in a sling for my efforts) bending a BD pole :shock: 60kg + about 12kg pack. But I still like them...
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Gusto » Sun 15 Jan, 2012 8:22 am

My partner and I recently bought the Pacer 2 for a Christmas present. We haven't used it on a hike yet, but We've just been traveling about South Australia (by car) and have now slept in it for about 7 nights now. In that time we slept at an exposed coastal campsite which was very windy and we also had an evening of heavy rain. The tent performed exceptionally well in these conditions. On the windy evening the neighboring camper slept in his car as his tent was flattened (broken pole).

The quality of construction is impeccable. Comparable to high end expedition/bushwalking tent that cost up to $800 or more. The shape/design of the tent is very clever so as to perform well in wind and rain as well as to provide ventilation. The size is adequate for two people insid. The vestibule is tight but manageable. The tent also is great value, even if you need to buy new walking poles for it. I highly recommend it.

What's the downside, why isn't everyone using this tent? Well..

** The tent floor is 40denier thick. - For me this is eerily thin. So a ground sheet is a must. But is does keep the tent light
** The tent has only minimal space. However I think it's on par with many hiking tents. It's tall enough in center to sit up and long enough for tall people to lie down.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Franco » Sun 15 Jan, 2012 9:37 am

40 denier thick.
To clarify that point, because it does come up very often:
A denier is the weight of 9000 meters of the yarn in grams .
(9000m of that yarn is 40g )
So 40D is not necessarily twice as thick as 20D but twice as heavy.
It isn't also related to strength as some may think. A 20D piece of fabric could have more tensile strength (and or abrasion resistance or waterhead) than a 40D made from a different material.

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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Gusto » Sun 15 Jan, 2012 2:52 pm

That is a good point Franco. I am aware of the true definition of denier and thread weight, but I am a little hazy on how they translates to the weight and strength when it is woven as a fabric. Would this analogy be correct.

Eg. a hollow thread would produce a lighter fabric per square meter than a dense thread of equivalent denier. For example both a fleece jacket and a nylon tent fly could possibly be described as being of the same denier but have completely different weight and thickness per square meter. Also I expect the way (how tightly) the thread is woven will affect this too.

Would I be right in saying that a denser thread would generally be stronger and stiffer than an open thread of same denier?
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby Franco » Sun 15 Jan, 2012 4:09 pm

Can get very tricky trying to describe advantages and disadvantages but my point was just that we should not assume that because a fabric has a higher Denier number that it is stronger/better whatever.
It will be heavier. Then it can also be stronger and usually will be thicker.
But yes the initial weight of the yarn does not tell you the weight per yard of the finished product.
For example a 30d silnylon is 1.3oz per sq yard
Another fabric, a 70 denier ripstop, is 1.9oz per sq yard
All things been equal the 70d should be 2.99 oz (although I am never sure how they work decimal points there...)
I am quoting from this page :
http://www.seattlefabrics.com/nylons.html#1.3
note that the 30D 1.1 and 1.3 oz are the same at the start , it picks up the extra .2 oz with coating.
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Re: Aarn Pacer 2 Tent

Postby jononz » Wed 18 Jan, 2012 2:36 pm

Hello from NZ,
I have had an Aarn Pacer1 tent, brilliant in heavy rain, have to seal the seams after you buy one as it has not had this done at purchase, tends to flap the inner a lot in high wind as the ends are raised off the deck for ventilation by design. The ventilation is good no condensation in humid bush conditions, find it a bit difficult to pitch as it is a weird geometry, but better once you become used to it.

Comfortable to sleep in, needs a tough footprint groundsheet definitely, no tub floor here when bought. Folds tiny compressed, very light and durable, I use a stuff sack with compression straps. The only thing I have found lighter is a Macpac bush bivvy bag, the Aarn tent is much more comfortable in bad weather and as I am now 65 better than the bag.

Poles are strong in high winds, the cross pole is great except one end where the elastic centre connector bracket tends to block the entry of the pole tip, bad design that.

All in all though a great tent which I can recommend.

Jono in Kiwi Land
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