Can you camo a nylon tent with spray paint?

Started by KK0G, May 09, 2013, 12:33:42 am

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KK0G

It's a rhetorical question because yes, you can, and yes....... I did  8)

With my upcoming backpacking trip, I decided my old tent that has served me well for almost 17 years and has LOTS of repairs, has seen it's better days. That combined with the my desire for a smaller, lighter tent led me to purchase an inexpensive Ozark Trails one man tent for $30 at Wal-Mart.

The problem was the bright burnt orange and light gray/silver color would stand out like a sore thumb. A Google search on the feasibility of painting nylon turned up responses all over the map, from 'it'll work just fine' to 'the paint will eat the nylon' and everything in between. I actually found someone warning of the danger of suffocation since the nylon will no longer breathe............. dude, it's a tent, not a garbage bag.  :o

My solution.......... just paint the damn thing! At worst I'm out 30 bucks so I took the gamble. It was already clean and dry since it's brand new so I set it up in the yard and sprayed it with the same Rust-Oleum Camo series paint I use to paint gun parts using very light coats, closer to an over spray than a coat of paint, then I sprayed it with Scotch Guard silicone spray. It turned out pretty well in my not so humble opinion. After it dried completely I set it up outside for a water resistance test, after last nights rain it was bone dry inside and the water was beaded up on the outer surface. Time will tell how well it holds up.

"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

gil

Looks good... I'll never understand why tent manufacturers don't offer more tents in green or even camo. They would sell like hot cakes. Makes you wonder... I had to look around quite a bit to find one.

Gil.

Quietguy

A few years ago I saw a claim somewhere that those bright colors were actually a "safety feature" so rescue parties could more easily find lost campers. 

No, really.
Wally

KK0G

I think the reason manufacturers make mostly bright colored rents is because people buy them............ duh ;D
Most peoples idea of camping involves cramming the car full of useless junk then driving to the campground of the local state park on labor day weekend with all the other so called campers. These types of campers have little interest in camouflage and in fact may even be turned off by it. I doubt most backpackers are concerned with concealment either. Face it guys, we're a minority.................. story of my life.  8)
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

KC9TNH

Quote from: KK0G on May 09, 2013, 12:33:42 amAt worst I'm out 30 bucks so I took the gamble. It was already clean and dry since it's brand new so I set it up in the yard and sprayed it with the same Rust-Oleum Camo series paint I use to paint gun parts using very light coats, closer to an over spray than a coat of paint, then I sprayed it with Scotch Guard silicone spray. It turned out pretty well in my not so humble opinion. After it dried completely I set it up outside for a water resistance test, after last nights rain it was bone dry inside and the water was beaded up on the outer surface.
There's alot to your over-spray technique to recommend it; FWIW, in several season periods up here you could disappear and part of that is because you didn't completely obliterate the base color - fall leaves gotta make a livin' too.

Funny thing about the Rust-Oleum... I did some digging awhile back and the prescribed stock numbers for the various colors "authorized" for MIL weapons painting end up to be Rust-Oleum. For alot of purposes that & Krylon are interchangeable in most folks' minds. When I inquired to a log guy at the maint shop about why this & not that there was some mention that Krylon actually has an IR signature (in the fwiw department). Did the same treatment like your tent to an old-school knapsack years ago that was German Forest Ranger solid green to knock the edges & "shine" down; before common IR concerns.

Nice job Chris, I like it - 2x Thumbs-Up.

gil

Usually, I don't do "camo." Because it singles you out.. I prefer olive green. Camo does attract attention in other ways... That said, it does work really well.. I almost bought a Snug-Pack Bunker, which is green, but bigger and heavier than my ICS.

Gil.

KK0G

Quote from: gil on May 09, 2013, 05:51:56 pm
Usually, I don't do "camo." Because it singles you out.. I prefer olive green. Camo does attract attention in other ways... That said, it does work really well.. I almost bought a Snug-Pack Bunker, which is green, but bigger and heavier than my ICS.

Gil.


Maybe in your part of the country Gil but here in the midwest camo stuff is seemingly everywhere. Practically everywhere I go I see people wearing camo clothing, carrying camo bags, driving camo trucks, no matter if they're at Wal-Mart, the doctors office, the gas station, McDonalds, walking down the sidewalk. I've actually attended weddings where the wedding party wore camouflauge. It's common enough around here that no one would even give you a second glance.
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

gil

QuoteMaybe in your part of the country Gil but here in the midwest camo stuff is seemingly everywhere.


Right... Indeed, not so much here, though in some parts of the state is is more common.

Gil.

KC9TNH

Quote from: gil on May 09, 2013, 05:51:56 pm
Usually, I don't do "camo." Because it singles you out.. I prefer olive green. Camo does attract attention in other ways... That said, it does work really well.. I almost bought a Snug-Pack Bunker, which is green, but bigger and heavier than my ICS.

Gil.
Same up here a good part of the year if you're NOT in camo you'll stick out. :)

With all the MILSURP stuff out there now I find it's not that big a deal. The ACU-pattern stuff popular - with everyone except the Soldiers that have to wear it, and I agree - is all over.

The guy that sticks out around here is going to have the latest brightly colored $400 ruck, starched 5.11's, with Merrills, golf shirt and a rigger belt. The option to have one's primitive campsite be less obtrusive is, I think, a good thing, it's a personal call. If you want to call attention to it you can always hang out some laundry. All depends on what you're trying to blend with; be the chameleon as it were.

I've got a few OD/OG-shaded items and wouldn't re-do those; but a cheap orange shelter that worked, you bet.

Chris, what's that thing weigh ?
8)

KK0G

Quote from: KC9TNH on May 09, 2013, 07:12:04 pm
Chris, what's that thing weigh ?
8)


Good question - I don't know 8).

I bought it at Wal-Mart and since it's not really marketed to weight conscience backpackers the weight wasn't listed on the box. My bathroom scale wouldn't have near enough resolution to accurately weigh it and that's all I have to weigh with other than my powder scale so I'm guessing it's somewhere in the 4 pound range. At any rate it's at least several pounds lighter than my previous tent and packs to probably half the size.
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

RadioRay

May 09, 2013, 08:21:22 pm #10 Last Edit: May 09, 2013, 08:27:04 pm by RadioRay
Yup - How to fail 'blending in'.


"Sphincter-25 this is Bananaman - "                 "Sheeeee- I don't THINK so brutha!"
"be on the look-out for high & tights, "              "I'm checking out that red headed nurse!"
"wearing 5.11's, Merrills, black oversized"
"jackets which do not fit this weather "
"and black rucksacks containing unusually"
"Heavy kitchen appliances."



"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

KK0G

Quote from: KC9TNH on May 09, 2013, 07:12:04 pm
The guy that sticks out around here is going to have the latest brightly colored $400 ruck, starched 5.11's, with Merrills, golf shirt and a rigger belt........


Have you been spying on me?  ;D

Well I sure can't afford a $400 pack and my 5.11's are pretty tattered but................... 8)
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

KC9TNH

Quote from: KK0G on May 09, 2013, 08:27:19 pm
Quote from: KC9TNH on May 09, 2013, 07:12:04 pm
The guy that sticks out around here is going to have the latest brightly colored $400 ruck, starched 5.11's, with Merrills, golf shirt and a rigger belt........


Have you been spying on me?  ;D

Well I sure can't afford a $400 pack and my 5.11's are pretty tattered but................... 8)
(LOL, nice Ray). If your 5.11's are tattered, good. That means you're actually doing something. You know the guys I mean though....  ;)  Oh, well, those guys are at the Hampton so, anyway, nice tent.
;D

Now on to check out a guy's blog who took a KX3 to the middle of a Pacific paradise.
#1 gd is gonna be into this kit-thing so we might start & build that regen receiver together and then get her up to speed enough to do a propagation presentation for her 4H project.

"Wounds my heart with a monotonous languor."




KK0G

Quote from: KC9TNH on May 09, 2013, 08:54:17 pm
Now on to check out a guy's blog who took a KX3 to the middle of a Pacific paradise.
#1 gd is gonna be into this kit-thing so we might start & build that regen receiver together and then get her up to speed enough to do a propagation presentation for her 4H project.


Have you checked out the WBR Receiver? http://aa7ee.wordpress.com/2011/07/24/the-wbr-a-simple-high-performance-regen-receiver-for-40m-by-n1byt/

It's a pretty popular design and lots of people have successfully built it as a first time homebrew, even me. It impressed me with it's performance. here's a link to the original QST article: http://arp75.free.fr/PortailARP/file/2011/n1byt%20_wbr.pdf

Now how do we always get so far off the original topic?  8)
"Those who would give up essential liberty to purchase temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety" - Benjamin Franklin

KK0G

Frosty

Quote from: KK0G on May 09, 2013, 09:11:10 pm
Now how do we always get so far off the original topic?  8)


Looks like Ray's fault to me, but it was damn funny.