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Thread: Hilleberg Customer Service

  1. #1
    Member Formerly Montana Bob's Avatar
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    Default Hilleberg Customer Service

    Howdy All,
    Just thought I would give a little heads up report on Hilleberg tents.
    Drew a Sheep tag last year for the TMA and went looking for the appropriate gear. This was to be a fly in with 40 mile to Sheep country and only wanted the best.
    After some extensive research found a lot of people were going with the lightweight Hilleberg tents.
    After doing some searching I went with the Nallo 3GT sold over at Barney's.
    This thing was not cheap at around $700 with Aluminum poles and floor saver.
    That was quite a chunk of change for me and was skeptical, but you all had nothing but good to say about the Hilleberg products.
    Well of course with my luck it poured down rain everyday with 30 to 60 MPH winds. We even had a brief blizzard. I had cut out a patch of Alders to try and get out of some of the wind and here is where we kept camp for all 5 days.
    The tent held up good with the usual condensation forming inside with 100% humidity outside.
    Never did see a legal Sheep, but was a great time.
    Got home and started unpacking gear getting ready for the Winter storage when I noticed all 3 of my tent poles were bent. 1 was bent pretty good at the joint and wanted to get it replaced before this years hunting season.
    Went to the Hilleberg website to look for replacements. Not being too sure if the slight bending was normal or not I emailed them.
    I received a quick and informative reply from the owner Petra. He sent me a chart, asked me to find the sections I needed. I replied with pictures as I was unsure if I should replace all 3 or not. 2 of the poles just had a slight arch to them when assembled.
    The next day he replied asking for an address to where he could send the new poles.
    About 5 days later I received 3 brand new poles.
    No hassle, no arguments, just a friendly reply along with the replacements at no charge.
    In this day and age I had to let others know of the customer service as so many others are just out for the buck and once they have it they are done with you.
    Fish IT! Hunt IT! or *#%@ IT!

  2. #2
    Member oakman's Avatar
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    good to hear the service is so good. I own the exact same tent. I haven't had any problems, but it is good to know that if I do they'll take care of me.

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    Moderator LuJon's Avatar
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    Isn't the Nallo designed to let you double up on poles? If so it may be worth dragging the bent ones along on the next outing, just to leave at the strip in case you have the same luck again.

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    Tunnel tents are designed to flex and perhaps even bend over in the wind. They are not a "rigid" design like a dome style tent. Hence the bent poles. Glad to hear they took care of you. And BTW... Petra is a "she". Daughter of the founder I believe.

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    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    I bought the GT3 two years ago. Only got to use it in the back yard and in the Chugach on an archery sheep hunt for 4 days...it sure looks lonely sitting on that shelf......

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    Member bnkwnto's Avatar
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    Sounds like awesome customer service. I drew the tag this year and I'm going in Sept. I was debating on whether to take my three season REI tent or to upgrade to a four season Hilleberg or similiar tent?? Pm me if you'd like to share any more info. I'm flying in with 40mile also.

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    Member ekberger's Avatar
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    I too have to add my .02 worth on Hilleberg's customer service. I am the proud owner a new Nammatj 2 GT that I will spend much of the summer in as I guide river trips out of the Bristol Bay area. For those of you familiar with last summer's rains in that area it goes without saying that it was pretty rough at times. I used a competitors product on one particular trip and it was a big mistake. Setting up and taking down a Hilleberg tent in the rain with their unique inner/outer tent design is a big plus. Every time I've dealt with Petra she was very responsive to my questions and needs. Yes, you pay a lot more for their products, but for my comfort their worth every penny.

  8. #8
    Member Formerly Montana Bob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snyd View Post
    Tunnel tents are designed to flex and perhaps even bend over in the wind. They are not a "rigid" design like a dome style tent. Hence the bent poles. Glad to hear they took care of you. And BTW... Petra is a "she". Daughter of the founder I believe.
    Just looked back at the email and you are correct.

    Thank you very much. Hope you have a great season.

    Petra

    Ps: I am a she .. J


    Fish IT! Hunt IT! or *#%@ IT!

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    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    Great to hear of the quality customer service. I've not purchased a Hilleberg, I've thought about it, but the prices on them are stratospheric.

    To think that poles bent in a 'world class' tent that commands such premium $ is disappointing to say the least. I've heard several stories now lately about Hillys that failed or hiccuped.

    The Biblers I've had in the past were subjected to Alaska and Kodiak's worst, and never failed in any way.

    Hilly's customer service may be great, but it shouldn't be needed in a world class tent.

    Wasn't it Kaha's H. tent that failed badly in the Brooks too?
    Proud to be an American!

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    Remember that the expedition/original Hilleberg tunnels are models like the Nammatj. They use the Kerlon 1800 fabric and the 10mm poles. The lighter weight Nallos that these guys are using and having issues with use the Kerlon 1200 fabric and 8 or 9 mm poles, they also have thinner floors. Anyway, Hilleberg also instructs one to pitch the tent so the tunnel in to the prevailing wind. I think Kaha's pole failure was a result of snow load which the tunnels aren't as good for as others. It was all of those reasons why I went with the Tarra. Kerlon 1800, 10mm poles, free standing/rigid design and better/more guy outs. The Jannu is the lighter version, 1 vestibule, Kerlon 1200 fabric and 8mm poles.

    Either way, 4 10mm poles in a rigid freestanding is gonna be stronger than 2 8mm in a tunnel. For a lb or 2 weight savings I don't think the lighter versions are worth it. Not if a guy is wanting a bomber tent anyway. Not to mention having to be carefull of where and how you pitch it. I've pitched my Tarra in some exposed high wind places a few times and it sticks solid. I call it The Bunker.

  11. #11
    Member Formerly Montana Bob's Avatar
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    Thought I would show a pic of the poles. This is the first time I have used a tent of this nature and this may be a common trait with these type of tents.
    Fish IT! Hunt IT! or *#%@ IT!

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    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Snyd View Post
    Remember that the expedition/original Hilleberg tunnels are models like the Nammatj. They use the Kerlon 1800 fabric and the 10mm poles. The lighter weight Nallos that these guys are using and having issues with use the Kerlon 1200 fabric and 8 or 9 mm poles, they also have thinner floors. Anyway, Hilleberg also instructs one to pitch the tent so the tunnel in to the prevailing wind. I think Kaha's pole failure was a result of snow load which the tunnels aren't as good for as others. It was all of those reasons why I went with the Tarra. Kerlon 1800, 10mm poles, free standing/rigid design and better/more guy outs. The Jannu is the lighter version, 1 vestibule, Kerlon 1200 fabric and 8mm poles.

    Either way, 4 10mm poles in a rigid freestanding is gonna be stronger than 2 8mm in a tunnel. For a lb or 2 weight savings I don't think the lighter versions are worth it. Not if a guy is wanting a bomber tent anyway. Not to mention having to be carefull of where and how you pitch it. I've pitched my Tarra in some exposed high wind places a few times and it sticks solid. I call it The Bunker.
    ahhh. gotcha.

    But....if a guy is in the Brooks where it can and probably will snow during any given sheep hunt, why not invest in a Bibler-style bunker capable of snow load and everything else ma nature will dish?
    Proud to be an American!

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    Quote Originally Posted by fullkurl View Post
    ahhh. gotcha.

    But....if a guy is in the Brooks where it can and probably will snow during any given sheep hunt, why not invest in a Bibler-style bunker capable of snow load and everything else ma nature will dish?
    Biblers are nice, no doubt about it. I almost bought a Fitzroy they had here in town but I didn't care for the no vestibule or separate small vestibule approach. With vestibule it comes in at 8lbs and about 700 bucks. About the same as the Tarra. I had a single wall, internal pitch TNF Apogee tent for a few years. Made from a tri-laminate material like Bibler's ToddTex. Kind of fuzzy on the inside to spread condensation out to evaporate. It was an internal pitch tent with 5 poles. 4 in the tent body and 1 for the vestibule. That tent had a drum tight pitch and was solid as a rock in the wind. In the wind condensation was not an issue but in the lowlands or moist air with no breeze it was a very damp environment, even with the 4 vents and 2 doors. I really liked how tight it was, it made it very quiet in the wind. I did not especially like the internal pitch. Setting it up in the rain while being wet myself made for a wet interior right off the bat. Also, because of the condensation and the way the material "held" moisture the tent got heavy when having to pack it wet. I decided I wanted a 2 man, double wall, freestanding, exoskeleton tent with one good sized or 2 vestibules. I narrowed it down to one of three Hillebergs. The Tarra, Staika, or Jannu. Tarra and Staika are made with the Kerlon 1800 and 10mm poles. Jannu was attractive for the weight savings of about 2 lbs over the Tarra or Staika. I decided on the Tarra since it weighs the same as the Staika. For me, it seems to be the best of all worlds. Excellent venting, double wall, 2 vestibules, exoskeleton freestanding design, etc.

    For a single man tent I think one of the single walls on the market could be a nice setup. For two guys, man, I really like this Tarra. It weighs less than the old standard TNF Mountain 25, has more room, 2 vestibules and internal and external tent go up together. Here's a couple pics of the TNF and the Tarra.






    The Tarra sat here for 5 days getting pummeled by major winds coming off the high mtns and down this valley. It stuck tight.



    Not my tent but it's a Tarra
    Last edited by Snyd; 03-25-2011 at 17:17.

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    The loop for the guylines is designed so it wraps around where the two pole cross. You can see in this pic. And there is another vestibule like this at the other end with plenty of room for a pack and wet gear for each guy.



    Here it is opened up from both ends. You can see the inner tent. You can also just use the outer tent and leave the inner at home if you want. May be an option on a solo trip.




    Did I say I love this tent!




  15. #15
    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    That isn't a tent, Perry; it's a castle!
    My wife and I have had smaller apartments...

    Very nice.
    Proud to be an American!

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    I have the Bivanorak and it rules! They did a great job on it and it's like a wearable tent! Hats off to them!

  17. #17

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    Quote Originally Posted by Formerly Montana Bob View Post
    Thought I would show a pic of the poles. This is the first time I have used a tent of this nature and this may be a common trait with these type of tents.
    Yep I had a Nallo GT3 that after a wind storm in the Kenai Mountains one of the poles looked similar to the above pics. I sold the tent as I no longer view the Nallo GT3 as a true 4 season tent given how it handled snow loads and changing wind directions when I owned it. Great tent, but for the $$$ and weight I think you can do better, but hard to beat the hilleberg custy service though.

  18. #18
    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    There is a Hilly here on the Swap and Sell for sale...with, yep, a bent pole.

    I dunno. There is a definite structural problem with these tents and no doubt Hilleberg knows it. If they weren't such premium dollar it wouldn't be quite an issue...but...
    Proud to be an American!

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    It's the design/nature of tunnel tents. They are supposed to be pitched into the prevailing wind if possible. Notice the "hood scoop" on the tents. It is supposed to catch air and funnel it through the tunnel. Look at what happens when the tent is hit broadside. Everything flexes. Any aluminum pole is bound to bend/give or break under that kind of stress/strain. Check out these and other videos of tents in the wind. If you can build a snow wall I guess that will help. Shaving 2lbs of weight for a tunnel tent doesn't look worth it to me.

    Tunnel tents in the wind.





    Hillegerg Saivo- freestanding 3 man version of the Tarra


  20. #20
    Member fullkurl's Avatar
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    Interesting videos.

    The problem with tunnel tents is...the wind doesn't know that it should be blowing lengthwise <only>. : D
    The Saivo looks tight.
    Also looks like M.H. EV2, Rab MKIII and Bibler Eldorado tent country....
    Proud to be an American!

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