The fine weather today allowed me to pitch the F10 Nitro Lite 200 in the back garden. So here’s a few photos:
So what do I think? Firstly, the build quality seems good. I couldn’t spot any problems. My only quibble is the the wire hoop over the door is a bit wonky. I’ve got the same problem on the Vortex 200. Apart from that, every thing seems neat and tidy. All the seams are tape sealed. However, the right hand door seam will need to be sealed on the outside as it has been impossible to seal the zip material.
Although I have some reservations about whether rain might be driven through the rear vent, it should be fine under most conditions as the hood is quite deep. I’m still inclined to modify it so it can be closed, perhaps with a piece of silnylon and Velcro.
It’s very easy to pitch. Peg down tail end, insert poles, then pull the door end and peg. The side guys are vital to tension the fly. The end pegging points are adjustable and there are tensioning straps on one side of the poles. Even with the adverse slope in my garden, it wasn’t difficult to get a reasonable pitch. I didn’t centre the Gothic arch poles properly, which I’ll remember to do next time.
As you can see from the pictures, there’s plenty of room inside, easily enough for two (the mat in the picture is a full length Thermarest). Having said that, I think tall people might touch the end with their sleeping bag. However, there’s certainly good clearance between the fly sheet and the inner. The inner is secured to the fly with hooks and shock-cord and can be easily detached .
On the front arch, there are two adjustable cords making the Tension Band System. These are easily adjusted and can be detached. They definitely make the front arch more stable and don’t really get in the way. There are no TBS cords on the rear arch.
Along each side of the inner, there are long mesh pockets (joy of joys). There are a couple of hanging loops; one at the rear in the inner tent and one in the porch. The porch is a good size for storage and cooking. The outer door has a two way zip, so the top can be opened for ventilation. The rain flap is secured with Velcro. Also, there is a fastener at the base of the door, to take the tension off the zip. The door can be completely tied back with two toggles and loops.
The door of the inner is an almost complete O, with a two way zip. It also has a mesh venting panel which can be sealed with a zipped solid panel. It’s a shame that there’s not the same arrangement on the rear vent. The inner material is quite fine. Although it is quite a deep orange, the thinness makes it translucent and inside it’s quite light and airy (in contrast to the Vortex 200). The groundsheet material is thin PU coated nylon, but feels more robust than the silnylon of say the Scarp. The seam across the middle of the tent has been sealed with tape.
Overall, it seems like a really good tent, well made with good quality materials. Compared with the Scarp, there’s a lot more room. The tunnel design means that I suspect it will move and flap a bit more than the Scarp in a strong blow, but it seems reasonably strong and stable. My only real criticism is that the pegs are too thin, but I’ve got plenty of spare pegs to replace them. Whether the rear vent is an issue, I’ll only know when I take it out in really bad weather. All in all, I’m very happy with it.