Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Tale of the Tetragon 5

tetragon polesI got home from the BMW MOA Rally in Billings, Mont. two weeks ago today, but my big-ass Eureka! Tetragon 5 tent and fly are still spread out over the treadmill and various other things in the garage where I laid them out to dry.

I learned as a fraternity pledge that there is no such thing as a good excuse. But there are reasons…

There was a nasty wind blowing when I arrived at the rally site and in my road-addled condition, I forgot how the two “brow” poles (circled in red here) are supposed to go – running from front to back – and tried to flex one to go front to front. The result was a fractured fiberglass pole that, when properly placed, held together for the duration of the rally but clearly needed to be replaced.

So I went to the Eureka! (yes, the exclamation mark is part of the name) web site and poked around for repair and replacement parts. The descriptions were ambiguous. The poles come in four sizes (diameters, actually, although the site doesn’t say so) 7.9 mm, 8.5 mm, 9.5 mm, 11 mm and 12.7 mm. Not having any kind of metric measuring device in the house (yeah, I was surprised to discover that too), I relied on the description that said the 7.9 mm kit would fit the Tetragon 5 so that’s what I ordered.

The kit arrived while we were in Las Vegas last week and I got around to opening the box on Saturday, only to discover that the 7.9 mm pole is too small. Never mind what the web site says.

So Maria and I drove down to Lowe’s on Sunday afternoon – she for hardware to be used in quilting (too complicated for me to discuss here) and me for a cheap caliper/micrometer. I found one for $18 and change and justified the expense with the notion that it will surely come in handy someday.

tetragon caliper

It turns out that the pole segments I need are the 9.5 mm ones, so I got a return order document from Eureka! for the smaller pole segments and ordered the larger ones.

As soon as I have a full set of functioning tent poles, I can put them back into the stuff sack and pack the tent and fly along with them. (It would be needlessly awkward to pack the tent and fly first and then try to get the poles into the stuff sack.

So the tent and fly will remain where they are for a few more days until the next set of pole segments arrives.

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