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By Mark Rowe - Rockwood, Michigan - USA


Boom Tent For Sorcerer Lauren encouraged me to make this tent. Of course I thought it was a good idea, but may not have got around to it without her encouragement. My approach was fairly low-cost and minimalist. Others might emphasize the craftsmanship and materials more, but I wanted to git 'er done, as they say. So far we can say that it makes a great sun shade; we have not yet tested it in wind and rain. Total cost of materials was about $150. I know it doesn't look like it, but things add up.

These pictures show the flaps rolled up. They roll down, overlap, and velcro straps secure them in place.

The black spots are large Hexagenia mayflies, which were hatching by the millions on Western Lake Erie at the time.

It wraps around the mast, overlaps, and secures with velcro tabs. There is a tie around the mast at the top, and a halyard attached to D-rings holds it up.

Nylon straps with D-rings, nylon ties, and velcro strips were sewn on with a zigzag stitch, then sealed with 3M 5200 sealant. The light line ties the tarp down to the pad eyes attached to the boat.

The clips keep the poles from springing out and flying into the water during setup and take down. Fortunately we learned this in the driveway, then installed the clips. The light line attaches to a D-ring on the tarp and holds it down (shown earlier). Smaller pad eyes also would have worked, but I wanted strong tie down points for general use.

View toward bow

View toward stern. A semicircular piece of tarp was sewn on the back. The rest of it was cut from one piece. The diagonal tie-downs keep the boom from swinging.

The topping lift attaches to the outside of the tarp where the clip is and holds the boom up. As an aside, a cheekblock from Duckworks is visible on the side of the boom, which makes a very convenient reefing line setup.

Materials for boom tent

1 oz. Spool of V69 Thread, color: white
SD-090145 - 2 inch Stainless Folding Pad Eye, Qty 6
Shock cord clips SD652081 5/16", Qty 6
SS-750 - 7mm Fiberglass Tent Pole Kit, Qty: 5 (poles were assembled into 3 lengths of 12 ft each, note that 9mm poles were too thick. For reference, my boat is 6ft wide where the poles attach.)

3781T51  Black Acetal D-ring, For 3/4" Webbing Width
87975K64  Nylon Strip, .019" Thick, 3/4" Width, 75 ft roll, White (note: these nylon strips were a good find. They sew on easily, are plenty strong for ties and such, take a knot well, and were the right price. Most nylon webbings would be overkill here.)
Dry Top 312164 12-by-16-Foot Super Heavy-Duty 10-Millimeter UV Treated Tarp, White (note: I searched for coated nylon fabrics and similar waterproof fabrics, but the best deal I could find would have cost $400. I think the tarp material will work fine, and the white stuff looks pretty good and is bright inside. In addition to the 12’x16’, and additional small piece was needed to sew on the back.)

Non-adhesive backed velcro

Stainless screws, nuts, and washers for attaching the pad eyes

light line

3M 5200 Marine sealant for pad eye hardware and for sealing the needle holes in the tent (Note: the 5200 has started to peel slightly from the poly tarp, but hopefully will stick where the thread and holes are. I also tried a spray-on silicone fabric waterproofing product, which was too thin to fill in the needle holes and tape that was made to stick to polyethylene, but did not stick.)

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