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Bell tent - inner tent or not

(19 Posts)
BramblyHedge Sun 30-Aug-09 10:41:39

Had a practice pitch of our new 5m obelink bell tent yesterday and love it. Can't wait to go camping in it. Undecided about getting an inner tent though and wondered what experienced bell tenters thought. We have 2 ds (3.5 and 1). Has anyone tried an alternative divide like a net or curtain? Part of me doesn't want to ruin the aesthetics and space of the tent with an inner but practical mummy says it will be easier to get the kids to sleep, warmer etc? For those without, are bugs a problem at all? DP and I are fairly experienced campers and quite low maintenance wrt comforts and equipment.


MollieO Sun 30-Aug-09 10:55:08

I can't imagine bugs being a problem if you tuck the bottom of the tent under the groundsheet. From what I've read having an inner cuts the tent in half so you have defined sleeping and living areas. I suppose you could always empty it in the morning and roll it up.

How easy was it to pitch?

FlamingoBingo Sun 30-Aug-09 11:05:37

Well we didn't get any bugs the first night we used our tent without the inner, but we only spent half the night in it before DD1 started being sick and we abandoned camp!

We bought the inner for our next trip for some privacy - we thought we'd have all our bedroom stuff in it and could unhook it and fold it all up in one place in the day time if we wanted to be inside a lot.

I did like sleeping under that beautiful ceiling without the inner, but the inner does make the sleeping space nice and cosy. I felt like we were warmer with the inner, but that is probably just my perception.

Basically it looks nice and dramatic without it, but nice and cosy with it. Just depends what your preference is!

I'm glad we bought ours - now we have a choice, and can always not use it if we want to. Or take it down in the day time with all our night stuff rolled up inside it.

MollieO Sun 30-Aug-09 11:09:41

FlamingoBingo does the inner tent attach like an inner tent on a normal tent? I'm interested as I'm getting a 3m tent so if I want an inner I think I'd have to make it.

FlamingoBingo Sun 30-Aug-09 11:13:51

Not quite. There's a hoop attached to the pole about a metre from the top, which you attach a hook from the inner to. Then there are little toggles all the way around the inner, about 50cm from the bottom, which hook into the hoops around the walls of the tent. Would be complicated to make, but good luck!

Why not contact the bell tent inner suppliers ( and and see if they can suggest anything? They might be able to tell you where you can get a 3m inner.

TheDMshouldbeRivened Sun 30-Aug-09 11:16:14

I like my inner because insects do get in under the tucked in groundsheet - you cant tuck it fully around the pegs.

FlamingoBingo Sun 30-Aug-09 11:17:59

Do you keep the groundsheet pegged in then, Riven? We unpeg ours.

FlamingoBingo Sun 30-Aug-09 11:18:56

Oh, and Mollie, you may find your space is far too restricted with an inner in a 3m belltent. How many of you do you have in it?

TheDMshouldbeRivened Sun 30-Aug-09 11:22:22

you need to hook the inner onto the groundsheet pegs. But it said if it was windy then your groundsheet should be pegged down.

MollieO Sun 30-Aug-09 11:24:12

Thx Flamingo. I've had a look but all the inners are for 4m and up. I would have to do something abit different because of the smaller size.

MollieO Sun 30-Aug-09 11:30:03

Flamingo there are only two of us so I reckon doing a full inner in light cotton that draps down and then rolls up inside during the day. Shouldn't be too hard to do once I sort out a template.

FlamingoBingo Sun 30-Aug-09 12:31:02

I meant email them, mollie, and ask them where theirs are made then email the suppliers and if they make/can make a 3m one.

Riven - I thought we had the same tent as you, but ours doesn't have a way of securing the groundsheet to the flap.

BramblyHedge Sun 30-Aug-09 14:10:00

Thanks all. Mollie - it was quite easy to pitch but took a while as it was our first time and we had no instructions. DP stood holding the pole and I did the guy rope pegging - we then adjusted it together. We got all the pegs the wrong way round but will know for next time.

I think we will try camping without an inner and with lots of blankets and see how we get on (in a fortnight). Probably only getting one trip in before the spring anyway.

FlamingoBingo Sun 30-Aug-09 18:40:42

You don't need to hold the pole while you peg out the guy ropes. The tension with the pegs round the bottom of the walls is enough to hold it steady. have good instructions.

paisleyleaf Sun 30-Aug-09 23:18:01

I love the big canvas space of ours, the circle, the light.
I can see how an inner might be good, but I'd rather wear a jumper in bed than lose that.
But, I don't really mind the odd bug.

See how you get on though - the evenings and early mornings are starting to feel a bit autumnal now.

TheDMshouldbeRivened Mon 31-Aug-09 16:12:47

'Riven - I thought we had the same tent as you, but ours doesn't have a way of securing the groundsheet to the flap'

it doesn't. you tuck the flaps around the pegs holding the grounsheet down. Not as neat as tucking them under an unpegged groundsheet.

FlamingoBingo Mon 31-Aug-09 16:16:17

I see. Surely that lets in more rain etc.? We didn't notice a problem on windy, rainy nights with the groundsheet unpegged.

TheDMshouldbeRivened Mon 31-Aug-09 16:19:18

it doesn't because you've also got the rubber loops at the bottom of the canvas to peg the canvas tent down 9as well as the guys). It holds the canvas out from the groundsheet.

BramblyHedge Mon 14-Sep-09 15:10:44

Just an update - we went this weekend and it was great. Don't think we want an inner tent as it was so lovely being able to look up at the roof of the tent and to have the space. Am in love with my bell tent and so glad we got it :-)

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