DIY Lightweight Tent

This tent is approximately 1 lb (2 lbs including 2 aluminum poles and 6 aluminum pegs). Tent can be pitch up using aluminum poles, hiking sticks or by tying tent peak to a tree with rope.

Material List:
10 yards Ripstop Nylon – $40
18′ @ $.35/ft #3 YKK Continuous Coil Zipper – $6.30 (for door)
4 @ $.35 #3 Single Pull Coil Zipper Slider-  $1.40 (for windows)
2 @ $.35 #3 Double Pull Coil Zipper Slider- $.70 (for door)
Nanoseeum Netting – 60″ width- $7.95 (for windows)
4 @ $.39 #3205 SNAPS – FEMALE HALF #24 – $1.56
#3206 SNAP SETTING TOOL – $3.35
6 yard @ $.34/yard #2402 NARROW ELASTIC CORD 3/32 inch Black- $2.04
8 @ $2.99 #4080 TENT POLE-NANO W/INS .344 18 inch Black- $23.92
4 @ $2.39 #4081 TENT POLE-NANO W/O INS .344 18 inch Black- $9.56
2 @ $3.10 #4050 TENT POLE ARCH-90 DEGREE .340 BLACK- $6.20
Silnet – $7.25
.25″ Seamstick tape – $15 (FYI helpful in sticking edges together by try not to sew throught it or the adhesive will stick on to the needle)

Total spent: $120.13
(you can save yourself $50 by excluding aluminum poles)

What you will also need:
polyester thread
sewing machine

Tent Plan:


This is basically the drawing I used for the tent. Vertical lines indicate where to mark your continuous ripstop. I used a black sharpie to mark up the fabric before cutting. Here is my explanation of the drawing. From the right, 8×4 makes the floor, you should then have 2 trapezoids for sides of tent and 2 triangles for front and rear door/window (make sure you don’t cut that). What you have left over are 2 right triangles indicated by X which will not be used. Bottom picture is of the front door/window with mesh. I pre-taped a continuous zipper to the door prior to sewing and then cut the fabric. The seam-tape was excellent in this.

Of the many things not noted in this plan, remember to insert loops on all corners of the tent when sewing and also for the windows do not cut out a full triangle. You just need to sew in zippers with an upside down V and then cut out. Additionally you can sew in mesh on the outside of your window. (don’t pay attention to the mesh in drawing, its a little misrepresenting).  Make sure your zippers are all facing the right way.

– Good luck –

Update 10/20/13


Here is a picture from my last backpacking trip. I think overall the tent performed outstandingly. I didn’t see any condensation. The wind didn’t seem to affect it much, even though there wasn’t much gusting.

Setting up was super easy. I decided to leave the dac aluminum poles out for the trip which brought the tent to about 1 lbs.  Only tricky part about setting up overall is finding 2 trees with a relatively flat ground to setup on. Other than that you just peg the four corners and using clip to hold the peaks up.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Time limit is exhausted. Please reload the CAPTCHA.