Latest News: Forums Technical Tent Leaking

This topic contains 5 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by  BluTak 10 months ago.

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  • #28056


    My tent is a heavy duck canvas boom tent. I used to remove the mainsail before putting the tent up as it was old and soft but now I have a new mainsail it is a lot easier to roll it round the boom for the night.

    The problem is that during heavy rain water puddles inside the sail. I’m not sure how the water is getting in

    AA  Down the mast and along the boom. (it used to carry on down the mast to under the floor boards)

    BB  Through the canvas where it touches the sail


    I just thought I’d ask if this is a common problem and if anybody has a simple solution before I start messing about with it (in the rain!) It used to be pretty dry until I got the new sail and wrapped it round the boom




    Dave Barker

    I don’t roll the mainsail around the boom but instead roll it from the top down onto itself and hang it just beneath the boom, still attached. This takes up a little more room in the boat I suppose, but the tent is made to fit over the bare boom (in our case), not the somewhat fatter boom+sail.  It means that the kicker and mainsheet can remain attached, which saves a little time. This presumably also gives a smaller area of contact with the inside of the tent. Whether it would make any difference in your case would be impossible to predict.

    If there seems any prospect of rain we wrap a microfibre cloth around the mast just above the tent’s mast collar, overlapping it so as to intercept any water running down the outside of the mast and wick it onto the outside of the tent. (The cloth is held in place with a bungee and Tyga tie). It appears to make quite a useful difference.

    Most boom tents don’t completely cover the boom, typically leaving a short length of the boom exposed at the stern end. If the boom is higher here than at the gooseneck rain can run along the boom and into the tent from this direction. Our tent doesn’t have this problem because I accidentally constructed it with the boom horizontal, but if it did I would probably use another microfibre cloth to intercept the runoff here.



    Hi Dave as ever you give good advice. I confess I never thought of rolling the sail under the boom though I had thought of slinging the tent underneath! The micofibre cloth sounds like a good idea and yes my boom does stick out though probably not enough to catch all the water I’m getting in the sail. I think most of the water is coming down the mast and into the sail. I’m not sure how it lies – probably stern up when I’m in the pub and stern down when I’m sleeping! I think I’ll think of an extension to cover the tip of the boom.

    Leaving the kicking strap on sounds good as its easy to pull the boom out of the gooseneck.

    It was a lot easier with the old sail as it was fairly quick to put back on the boom and it packed up really small for the night!

    Very Many thanks for your quick response other than that the tent is behaving well. When we were in the Kyles of Bute we met another Wayfarer who had the slab sided version from identical green canvas. His tent was also wearing well and he told me it was one of the first made by Moreland Tarpaulins in London. I bought it second hand in London (£50) some 30 years ago!



    I may have a trial on the trolley in the rain


    Andrew Morrice

    It may be a rather silly point to raise, but if the sail is at all wet when you roll it up, it is amazing how much water drips out over time.  It is a very very very large bit of cloth and that water only needs to pool in one or two places to drip all night long … baby!


    “boris” – delphy W6330.


    Dave Barker

    True. We nearly always sleep in bivvy bags – there are just so many ways of getting yourself and your sleeping bag wet…



    Hi Boris and Dave it’s not a silly point at all. The last time it leaked it was put up dry. I think it’s probably been running down the mast and then into the rolled up sail where the luff is in contact with the mast. I am hoping that a microfibre cloth may help as will rolling the sail underneath the boom. If I get time I think I’ll have a trial on dry land with it tipped both ways. I think it’s the sail as it didn’t leak when I used to take the the sail off. A bivvy bag is a good idea and I know where I’m can borrow a couple.

    Many Thanks and Merry Xmas!


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