Messing about with the comp

On Sunday afternoon, I took the Laser Competition into the back garden to see if I could master pitching it and to do a few modifications. My first idea was to replace all the guy lines with yellow dyneema and glow in the dark line-loks (sourced from Bob and Rose). I’ve decided that the pole hood is a waste of time so I attached the side guy lines to the loops for the hood.  The two end guys have been made longer so that the roof can be made reasonably taught.

 My next trick was to add two guy lines at the apex to make it more stable. I angled them slightly diagonally, so they could be a bit shorter. This gives a bit of longitudinal stability (see first two pictures). I replaced the fixed length of cord that attaches to the base of the short pole and the end of the inner tent with a length with a line-lok, so it is now adjustable and I can double it up with the peg for the outer tent (see picture on far right), which was not possible before.

My next modification was to tie the four corner shock cords for the inner tent to the appropriate fabric loop on the outer tent. This gets round the need to peg both the inner and the outer tent (don’t know why TN didn’t do this in the first place). This makes the pitching much simpler.  I’ve also added some cord loops on the outer tent pegging points so that I have the option of either using the existing shock cord or making the tent more stable with non-shock cord loops.

I had a look at whether I should seam seal the pole arch but decided that it probably didn’t need it. I’m having a think about whether to make a narrow cover for the zip, but it’s so tight against the pole, it could be difficult. As you can see from the pictures, the pitch is much better than my inept attempt in the Lake District. It is still likely to flap in strong wind, but feels a lot more stable. I don’t think it will ever be as rock solid as the Akto, which is probably why so many Akto owners stay loyal. I’ve got another couple of ideas for modifications, that I’ll try another time.



8 thoughts on “Messing about with the comp”

  1. You own an Akto and you’re faffing about with the Laser… Clearly I’m missing something here. ;o)

  2. It’s the weight…..if the Akto were 300/400g lighter, it would be unbeatable, but the Laser Comp is 500g lighter. Sad isn’t it? 😉

  3. I’m a laser owner myself and am considering omitting the pole cover. I think I will seam seal if I do, but I have the luxury of more guy points on the Laser. I am concerned that the tie on points for the pole cover make poor attachments for direct guy lines to be attached to? I had an Akto and sold it as I needed more head room, I’m 6’2
    and dont miss it.

  4. I’m a bit shorter than you, so I don’t find headroom an issue. I think the Akto is generally a better tent, if weight is not a primary consideration. On the other hand, the laser comp is 2/3rds the weight. The hood loops have to be reasonably safe to tie guys to as they take the strain from the guys on the hood (or the side ones do at any rate). The guy points at the apex clearly do not take as much strain, but I have the guys taught rather than really wound up. The tension along the roof from the end guys take most of the strain. The apex guys just stop the pole moving backwards and forwards. I’m resonably confident this should be OK. I have another wheeze in mind for the side guys, which I will share when I’ve tested it.

  5. I like a man that doesn’t give up!

    All looks like good stuff. But, the LC relies on it’s inherent flexibility to make it usable under strong winds. With the centre pole pretty much rigidly tied the fabric will rattle worse than ever when the wind get up. Think flag on a flagpole.

    Nobody believes me, but the pole cover does add tension to the outer :o)

    It’s an odd one, it really is. In the new Trail there’s a lightweight Lakes feature where a reader (Dave, a good lad) spent the night in gear we suggested and he used a Lasercomp, I didn’t pitch it and it looked like tarp thrown over a pile of pallets and rattled like crazy all night. I was all perturbed by this and took it away to do a comparison test to one of mine, in case the brand new ones were different.
    It’s the red one in the pictures here I pitched it and it looks like a catalogue shot, the outer is as tight as a drum, and that’s with those daft 2g titanium pegs.

    It must be a knack, or I’ve just pitched one of these so many times now I’ve got it dialled.

    I hope you get it sorted, the benefits of it’s size and weight are amazing.

  6. The extra guying doesn’t make the pole rigid, just cuts down some of the movement. I really recommend using a line-lok for the cord to the inner. It makes it so much easier to adjust. I can’t claim to be an expert in pitching the laser, but it seems to me that adjusting the short poles so they lean outwards at the correct angle makes a lot of difference.

  7. Good lad. It’ll be interesting to see how it goes.

    After all the forum chat, I’m away to see if I can use the outer as a tarp…

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