Any imput on canvas tents?
I have a 4 & 8 man Cabelas's Guide model tents for hunting and now starting to look at a canvas tent. I went by Alaska Tent and Tarp today but they were closed on Sundays. Main use of this tent would be a cooking / place to get out of the weather. Any recomendations or imput from those that have these tents would be greatful. I would like to have one with the ability to put a stove in it.
Canvas wall tents are great. I have owned a 10x12, and an 8x10. Both were Raineers.
Wall tents are hard to beat for both a main camp tent or a cook shack. They are durable if treated right, but they are heavy and bulky compared to other types of tents, so you need dedicated space on your conveyance. Double that if you have a stove and associated pipe stuff. You also need a tarp for a fly in snotty weather and the wherewithall to obtain and put up the poles unless you can find a flat place between two trees. If you own or lease a camping place you can build a tent frame and just put up your tent every year when you come back.
Canvas tents are quite stable, and since the fabric is woven so tightly they feel warmer inside when windy. After using dome tents made of taffeta nylon for years, I now sleep in a canvas tent when hunting. This one is just perfect for me since I sleep alone (my hunting partner snores so he sleeps in his tent). It's 8' x 10' in size, and does not have a floor (just like other Wall tents). But I throw tarp on the floor (8' x 10" tarp), and on top of it I place a water-proof canvas floor of the same size.
Like Sayak said, it's a good idea to cover the tent with a tarp, but you will have to be careful if using a stove in the tent. I use a small propane stove (Mr. Heater or something like that), and cover the tent with a tarp as follow: I built a lumber A-frame, using the trees nearby, that's around four feet higher than the tent's ridge. I throw a 14' x 20' (something like that) tarp over the A-frame, and this tarp keeps rain or snow from falling on the tent. It's quite comfortable inside, although I only use the heater before I get in my sleeping bag at night. I do have a metallic frame for it, but next summer I plan to build a small wooden platform and frame, so I won't have to take the heavy frame out there again.
Wall tents are designed with holes, one at each ridge's end. You can pass a long and narrow piece of lumber through the entire ridge, and hold the pole's ends (piece of lumber) with crossed sticks (like an A-frame at each end). These A-frames will hold the ridge UP, to all you need is a few short sections of lumber with a narrow end each. This narrow end can be passed through each grommet on the side walls to hold the walls UP. Then a rope from each one of the narrow ends of the side-wall poles, tied to tent stakes a few feet from the tent walls.
You can get some ideas about frames by looking at this website, but keep in mind that there are a lot of cheaper ways to set-up a wall tent:
This one shows you a lumber-made frame (this is the cheapest way to go):
As Sayak pointed out, canvas wall tents are great but come with some downsides in terms of bulk and weight. I had a 10x12 wall tent and loved it. I got rid of it when I moved to Alaska but will definitely get another one someday. Depending on where you're setting one up you might be able to get by without taking poles / posts with you. When pitched properly, they can be a rock solid very comfy shelter from the elements.