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Can you tell me about bell tents?

(10 Posts)
katz Wed 20-Jul-11 20:38:30

i really like this tent i'm guessing a 5m one with an inner for a family of 4. Do the inners normally split into 2 bedrooms.

How often would we need to re-waterproof it. is it a realistic option for bumming round france for 2 weeks.

Help me to convince DH that it'll be worth the investment.

lovecat Wed 20-Jul-11 20:59:39

Pretty tent! As far as I'm aware, the inners are one big room, but you can buy 1/4 inners and use 2 to split the bell tent in half, if you see what I mean. Definitely get a 5m one, there are 3 of us and the 5m is ample, but I think the 4m may feel a leetle cosy... we have a 1/4 inner but we don't really use it, we like the feeling of space.

Re. waterproofing - I got mine from Soulpad and it comes waterproofed to quite a high degree, we have used ours 3 times since we got it and each time on at least 1 day it has rained. Last weekend was torrential and it remained dry, we put it out to dry in the garden and it rained again, it was still fine inside. I reckon you'd be fine in France for 2 weeks at a time.

And they are so fabulous!!

- You can stand up in them

- They are super easy to put up and take down

- They are far more 'solid' and windproof than a lot of nylon tents

- They are v. spacious even with the inners

- You can roll the sides up and enjoy the breeze on a hot day

- DH hates camping but loves our bell tent.

- They look sooo lovely...

grin

katz Wed 20-Jul-11 21:14:52

Need to do a bit of research as to where's best to buy one from, love the coloured ones but happy with a cream or white one too.

DH claims we don't need a big tent but 2 weeks camping = need for more space!!

oranges123 Wed 20-Jul-11 21:27:38

There is quite a lot of info on here about options for where to buy a bell tent. If you are happy with cream rather than the blue one, the cheapest option is to order from Obelink in Holland. Only problem is they say they don't deliver bell tents to the UK (long story which you will find on many other threads here). However, I have just received a 5m bell tent from them in the last week or so - just the basic version with a separate groundsheet. I paid £290 odd including delivery, just to give you an idea. No idea though if this just slipped through the net but you could give it a go - you can navigate the Dutch ordering system using Babelfish for translation.

Wherever you decide to buy (and Soulpad come highly recommended amongst the UK sellers from what I have seen) you will love having a bell tent. To give you an idea, we used to have a 4m as a couple and were totally fine with that. Since we had DD (now 20 months) it has felt a little more cramped so, like Lovecat, I would recommend going bigger if you can.

Enjoy! grin

katz Wed 20-Jul-11 21:57:06

will have a look - thanks

ReshapeWhileDamp Wed 20-Jul-11 22:11:01

If it helps (and bearing in mind my disclaimer, which is that I'm a very new bell tent owner and we haven't actually camped overnight in it yet blush), we went for a bell in the end because I envisaged a lot of rainy camping holidays where we'd want somewhere large enough and not claustrophobic to hang out while waiting for weather to clear. I know that's wimpish of me and we should be setting the young 'uns a good example by donning waterproofs and yomping in the rain, because rain isn't a good reason to stay indoors ... but I also know my own limitations! grin

envy at Oranges' great deal from Obelink.

needanewname Wed 20-Jul-11 22:14:44

have you had a look at the emperor on belltent.co.uk (sahara on oblelink) they also now do one with either ZIG or SIG - beautiful, but a little large! Though I've seen fab pictures of an emporer and 5m pitched together but thats getting off topic!

From my extensive research, reviews for:
belltent.co.uk - very mixed with lots of bad customer service
soulpad - very good, excelletn custoemr service
obelink - also very good, cheaper if ou're going that way anyway and fab service, called them up beofre we went and reserved one

Have seen bell tents from all 3 companies and pretty much the same tent really (soulpad have orange ropes).

We have 5m ZIG with inner, the inner isn't necessary but makes life easier to stop the kids from going in the bedroom and bouncing on the beds, its also another layer of insulation.

They are amazingly gorgeous and I can't wait to go away again!

needanewname Wed 20-Jul-11 22:15:09

apologies for terrible typing - amm vvvvvv tired, must go to bed now!

mel2005 Thu 21-Jul-11 13:42:57

soulpad have great customer service, they are cheaper than belltent.co.uk, i paid £340 for our 5m one we got the seperate groundsheet because we wanted the option of rolling the sides up but i didnt want a zip just incase it broke. it was out for a week in torrential rain and some windy days and it was fantastic and stayed dry.
bell tents are so easy to put up and take down and they are so fab in side, you will never want a poly tent after you have slept in a canvas bell. i dont have an inner because i like the family atmosphere of being together and its so nice inside i think an inner would spoil it.
the only problem is once you have one you want to put it up all the time, its very addictive.
also soulpad have a facebook page with some good photos on.

katz Thu 21-Jul-11 20:36:51

now twist DH's arm!

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