Pioulou - Quick Overview

Discussion in 'Reviews & Previews' started by Dave V, May 29, 2018.

  1. Dave V

    Dave V Moderator Staff Member

    The below is based on one nights use so far and only pitching the shelter five times. I thought it best to write this up as I have been asked allot of questions and it would be a better way to share the information.

    Out of the box, the shelter weighed 354g inc sack and lines. The shelter came with a mix of 1mm and 2mm dyneema. Having had 2mm slip in the past I decided to swap it out for 3mm dyneema but am likely to change this again for some 2.7mm MLD line when I find my stash :p

    The rear mid panel tieout and the four corner seam lines all had the triangular plastic sliding lineloc’s on them. I have never really liked these so removed them and replaced with a simple torque line hitch. The lines were also tied directly to the wedding points on the seam so I have added some shock cord.

    After changing lines and removing slide locks 361g inc sack and lines.

    The shelter packs down into a stuff sack made of the same silpoly measuring 9x5x3.5 inches and can be compressed even further


    Material / Construction

    20D Silpoly in RSBTR Foliage, fairly slippery to touch and is soft as silk. Good cross of ripstop every 5th of an inch.

    The material feels fairly fragile at first but once pitched and you tighten the lines it obviously very strong with a little stretch but not anywhere near what I am use to with MLD Silnylon.

    I’m very pleased with the colour I chose, to the eye in most light it looks like a greyish green and is very discrete. At night and in the morning it lit up very nicely, letting just enough light though but weirdly did’nt seem to trap heat like my other shelters.

    The stitching looks very good. I had a look over each seam last night whist pitched and could not see any pulls, strain, stretching or miss-stitching. All the stitching looks very well finished too.

    The corner and door tieouts as well as the rear mid panel point have what looks to be hybrid dyneema patches glued in place, the corner and door reinforcements are also sewn around the hem.

    As standard the tarp will come with either a ladder lock or a simple loop on the corners, back midpoint and one of the doors with a quick release lineloc3 on the other door. I chose to have linleoc 3’s on all points and both doors to have the quick release version. I have put 2.3ft lines one the corners and 1.7ft line on the rear midpoint, having the linelocs was a godsend last night as there was stone underground everywhere I tried to place a peg. IMO, the linelocs and longer lines give more option for pitch location ad height.

    The apex also has hybrid cuben in a cone, I used half a tennis ball in addition to my pole bung for reassurance, I do this with most shelter when the pole tip / bung end is used.




    The shelter came with a pitching guide which I ignored and found my own way. The website and guide state that a pole height of 125cm would be best. This is correct but leaves very little ventilation gap, I much prefer having at least on end of a shelter raised for a flow of air.

    When I got home I measured the pole height I used last night and it was 137cm. With the pole bold upright you’d get around 5-6 inch gapes from the floor all-round. I angled my pole approx 3 inches off centre towards the door which allowed me to peg the rear down a little closer but maintain an air flow and have the front/door around 6 inches clear.

    I have only pitched the shelter five times and can have it up in under 4 minutes now, 7 minutes if you include the mesh inner I used last night.



    Inner Space.

    As you can see form the pictures, there is more than enough space for me to simply lay down, use an inner or bathtub.

    I have an Oookworks bathtub 220x70 and 3FUL inner seen in the pics which both fit without issue. I am get to try my Duomid Oooknest but seeing as its technically the same dimensions as the 3F inner it should fit without issue.

    To give you a better indication of space. The 3F inner is 220x70, I was using a Thermarest Xlite Regular and an Exped pillow. In he picture where I am laying inside the inner my feet were approx half a foot from touching the end of the inner with my knees slightly bent.

    With the inner in place and the doors closed, there was nearly 2 feet from the door overhand to the inner, tapering off to the corners but ample room to store my pack, shoes, water, poles and cook without restricting entry/exit.



    Still from video, pole at 125cm here

    Still from video, pole at 125cm here

    Things I dont like

    So far, I have only found one thing that bugs me, when the door is rolled back, there is only one point the secure the rolled door, thawing was changing direction a lot last night and with the door open the lower part of unrolled and became very flappy. I will sort this during the week, adding another loop further down the seam, most likely where the additional corner line is secured and then re-seam the seam.

    I have probably missed loads of things that people would like to know, please ask away and I’ll do my best to answer.

    Doors open and tied back

    Sunrise :)

    Moonlit Pioulou :p

    FOX160, tom, Dr.Matchbox and 16 others like this.
  2. Robin

    Robin Thru Hiker

    Thanks Dave. Although I’m unlikely to get one, useful information and photos.
    Dave V likes this.
  3. Arne L.

    Arne L. Section Hiker

    Great write-up., thanks for that.

    Does silpoly stay pretty taut overnight?

    I wonder if the inside (where your inner is, basically) would get wet if you open up the doors for a nightly pee-break?
    Dave V likes this.
  4. Dave V

    Dave V Moderator Staff Member

    There was no sag that I noticed and everything stayed as taught as when I pitched it.

    I don’t think it would get any wetter than other shelters. I don’t actually leave the shelter for pee-break, members of this forum showed me the light.
    edh and Arne L. like this.
  5. Balagan

    Balagan Thru Hiker

    @Dave Vaughan, you might be interested to know that your custom mods are about to become the default standard: side-release linelocks on both doors, LL3s on perimeter tie-outs and a more subdued colour, with foliage green in pole position.

    It would be great if these are included in the basic cost with no further increase.
    Dave V likes this.
  6. Dave V

    Dave V Moderator Staff Member

    :) Trend setter :p Xavier did say he thought the colour worked well for stealthier version :)
    Last edited: May 30, 2018
    FOX160 likes this.
  7. Arne L.

    Arne L. Section Hiker

    @Dave Vaughan , how are you getting along with the tent?

    Have you used it in anger yet?

    I might be interested in one because I like the compact size of the shelter.
  8. Dave V

    Dave V Moderator Staff Member

    Ive used it for five nights now. The only issues I’ve had was a flappy door when rolled back which I’ve solved by adding an extra tieback on each door.

    I’m very happy with the shelter. Easy to pitch, packs away nice and small, seems to handle the weather well although it’s only had around 25-30mph ish max so far from memory.
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2018
    rikdon and Arne L. like this.
  9. oreocereus

    oreocereus Ultralighter

    There’s an awful lot of extra tie outs. Nice for a bit of storm stability, but... being a lightweight forum and all (extra Guys and stakes)... how many are actually useful? I imagine the seam ones don’t provide meaningfully more resistance? Notably the solomid only has one rear panel tie out (though I think newer versions have more).

    Would an extra tie out or two along the hem make more sense?

    (This isn’t specifically aimed at your Dave, just pondering)
    Dave V likes this.
  10. Dave V

    Dave V Moderator Staff Member

    I personally think the extra rear guys are worthwhile.

    1. If using an extended line they would add stability in strong wind.

    2. For taller people or when pitched lower than I normally do they pull the panel out and add head room.

    The lines that came with it were swapped out. I swapped all the lines and removed the sliding locks, replacing them with taut line hitches. I don’t think there was much weight difference in the end.

    I would rather have them there than think bigger when caught in a storm.
    oreocereus likes this.
  11. oreocereus

    oreocereus Ultralighter

    My main concern is stability. I’m 5’10ish so adding space isn’t a big concern + tends to distort the pitch a bit (even though Tipik depicts this use on the website).

    Indeed extrA guylines and stakes will always be helpful in a storm. But there has to be a line of diminishing returns (i am just not sure what it is).
    Dave V likes this.
  12. Dave V

    Dave V Moderator Staff Member

    I don’t think your’ll find out without testing :p

    I’m not to bothered about the additional line/peg weight. I always carry extra pegs in case of failure, I also carry a small length is spare line which has come in handy more than once before
    oreocereus likes this.

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