GENERAL PAVILION INFO

GENERAL PAVILION--COLORS

From the color pictures I have, the most common color for a tent is a white or natural (undyed) color. Semi-common are red, pink, light blue and cobalt blue. Less common are green, dark blue, brown, black, gray, maroon/rust, and multicolored. Many are painted with elaborate designs, usually at least running along the seams, but often with ornate scrollwork around the top and bottom edges of the roof and sides. The most common edging on the roof was a straight strip of cloth, often ornately decorated or painted. The second most common was no edging on the roof (where sides and roof was attached), but this was often elaborately painted. The next most common was rounded dags or scallops. These ranged from very wide scallops (about 2' wide) to very narrow (about 4" wide). These ranged from about 4" to 1' deep. No examples of the undulating scallops available from most commercial manufacturers was seen. Fringe, tassels and filigree woodwork or metalwork was also shown extensively around the roof edge and sometimes along the ridge.

There are finials shown on the peaks of round style tents and at the ends of the ridge beams. Finials are most often cone shaped with a round tip, but are also shown in more complex designs. Often a decorative filigree runs along the top of the ridge beam. Julianna Copyright (c) Julia A. Adams, 1996 All Rights Reserved

Stay away from purple for its UV properties. The colored tents are far more period than the plain white ones. Sorry to sound grumpy, but the plain white ugliness that most of these people try to sell as medieval tents belong more at a rendezvous than a medieval tournament.

Having just spent the last few months doing research for just this topic, here's what I found. There isn't much info available for the early time periods for the northern European areas. The information I found is all from analysis of grave finds. The primary dye stuffs that were available were madder, giving shades from deep reds through oranges and into red/browns and orange/browns. The Vikings used madder extensively and in fact re-used it through it's exhaust colors. Woad is always a good choice and gives colors from blacks when added to iron and tannins, through the blues. The blue received is similar to indigo dyes since it is the same dye. Try to avoid any of the blues that are pastel or "soft". Weld is a dye plant that gives a wide range of yellows, and when over dyed with woad gives greens. These greens tend to be blue/greens. Browns and blacks are always a good choice. There is a misconception with many that black is a very expensive color. While this is true for the methods that were used to dye blacks in the later time periods, in the earlier periods, tannins, and bog iron were used. There is an entire list of other plants that "may" have been used as dye stuffs since the plants were available, but there is no supporting evidence for them.Akatyariena of the Winds

GENERAL PAVILION--MEMBRANE/CANVAS

I did learn two negative lessons: 1. Wash the cotton fabric TWICE in hot water before cutting/sewing - my 10-ft poles are now 9-ft, and my ridgepole is very snug. 2. And do not let it lay wet - I have mildew spots (sigh...)--Lady Wyllow of the Loch

The fire retardant and mildew resistance of some of the canvases are nice, but regular cotton sportswear works just fine..

To this end, I'd like to ask the historical basis (sources, please!) for tents made out of silk. I've done little research on the matter, there being a glaringly large hole in libraries wherein "historical tentage" seems to sit, but would very much like to find more. So, in short: Who made silk tents, when, out of what sort of silk treated what way, and where can I find any info at all on period tents?

The Romans made their barracks tents out of leather. If you know someone who has a burning need to spend a fortune on a pavilion, I would recommend this material. If you oiled it once a year, it would last forever. It would also be fairly fire-retardant. What a concept for a period fabric!

In short, it is a water soluable spray that you can apply yourself to your tent (it is non-toxic), and it will "fire-proof" the tent. (We did a demo using some cotton fabric that we lightly treated with the spray. After it dried, we soaked the fabric with an accelerant and set it on fire. The areas that were treated _didn't even scorch_, while the rest just burned away.) The pricing on this is not set (nobody retails it yet), but it might be something around $20/qt or $65/gal (a qt will cover 250 sq ft, and a gal covers 1000 sq ft). Dur , Dale E. Walter |Dur of Hidden Mountain dew@ecl.psu.edu |Orluk Oasis on the War Road (of Aethelmarc)

Sebastian wrote: "Seriously... What alternatives are there for pavilion material?" There are many. Waterproof canvass can be had for $3 a yard for 60" wide, from National Canvas in Buffalo, NY. I know a member of my household who makes pavillions for sale: a 10x10 can cost about $200. I am currently making one for Duke Sir Morguhn Sheridan in bright leaf green and gold/orange (his colors) that will cost about $150. I am basing it on a roof made out of an 11x14 8 oz canvas tarp that cost me $45 at Builders Square, and I am adding the green stripes (from another water resistant cloth material) to that. Ditto for the triangular ends & the walls - they are being built from 6x8 tarps that cost $16 each. This is a far easier method than the green & white striped, 18x18 pavillion I built from scratch last summer, and merchanted from. May I also point out that I am an over 30, self-supporting adult who is also going to college (and paying for all of it), and hold both a regional office & two local offices? Making a pavillion involves more steadfastness in not giving up than it really does anything else, and I don't feel it took all that much time - less than 2 weeks working on it part time. It would have helped a lot if I had had anyone to help me turn and MOVE that much canvas! So it really doesn't have to cost alot of money to have a pavillion. ANd it doesn't take that much work - at least, not compared to the silk on silk embroidered garb I do!

Just an idea here... In my small town, we have a Coleman factory that opens its doors to the public every Wednesday afternoon to sell fabric "seconds" (maybe not dyed uniformly, maybe another small, unnoticeable defect) for $.50 a pound. Our broke-student Seneschal bought enough good, heavy canvas in natural tan and dark green to make a 10x15 pavilion for a mere pittance. Rhianwen Morgaine ferch Aelhaearn

The Wardrobe and Pipe Rolls of England list fabric orders for the King's pavilions at the Winchester Fair in the 12th and 13th centuries. The fabric is linen canvas. I suspect this is pretty representative for noble pavilions all over Europe in the Middle Ages. I have seen a remnant of a silk pavilion in a museum show. I believe it was in the Al Andalus show at the Metropolitan Museum. I didn't buy the catalog, because it was collected articles, rather than a straightforward museum catalogue which listed all the items and photographed the most important. However, if I remember the note (and I am a fabric Junky--so I spent some length of time looking at the piece), it was a piece of fabric from an emir's tent, seized at the end of a battle. Since it was silk, it was given to the local cathedral for altar cloths. A piece of it was kept in the cathedral treasury. You are correct. It did not look anything like nylon. It was about the weight of a Chinese silk brocade, except that it was woven with Arabic inscriptions, instead of lotus blossoms. I have no idea how the fabric was treated. My suspicion is that it was actually an interior of a canvas tent. You might also check the catalog for the Suleiyman Show. There may have been one in that. Bottom line--I think silk pavilions were known in the Islamic world, but for very high ranking people.

We made our tent out of good solid trigger, not canvas. We got the cloth on the Wal-Mart dollar-a-yard table, which I considered very economical. I used the heavy carpet thread, and extra-weight needle, and sewed the whole thing on my standard (old, 17 years to be exact) Singer. No special equipment. The tent is now 3 years old, and has survived Kansas thunderstorms, Oklahoma downpours, and Mississippi cloud-bursts. It is steady in up to 40 mile an hour winds, and has always been warm and cozy. We have a small wood-burning stove for those events when it is a little nippy (we woke up one morning to find 3 inches of snow on the ground, and didn't know it had stormed until we peeked out. We waterproofed the roof only once, and have had no problem with leaks. We never have the "greenhouse" heat problem of nylon tents, and there is plenty of room for my queen-size rope bed. We have wall to wall carpet, and bunk rope beds for the kids. Really decadent, don't you think? In my opinion, if you have the cloth, go ahead and try it. I am very pleased with our results! ;-D

On the basis of a large quantity of woolen cloth found on the Gokstad ship (10th Century Viking Ship burial) which was either sails or tent covering or possibly doubled up in function as both, I tried making a Viking tent with woolen cover. It works wonderfully whilst up, no water at all gets through to the inside, you can touch the fabric and after a night of force 7 gales and torrential rain, it felt only slightly damp. The water seems to wick down to ground level within the cloth. I poured gallons of proofing solution over part of the tent and left the rest untreated when I ran out, the treated section behaves exactly the same as the rest, what a waste of proofing solution.

did once see a small dome tent completely "thatched" with twigs. Looked great. I also saw a campsite in which a convenient tree with a high limb was used with a rope attached to the top of a dome tent. During the day, the tent was hoisted up and out of sight.

Any heavy, closely woven cloth similar to canvas should work, provided it is made of fairly tough thread (pull a piece of thread off the end of the bolt and tug until it breaks!) should serve. Denim, canvas, twill, etc. should work (if you never put them away damp...they might rot in storage) often without use of waterproofing. I'm seriously considering making my roof of a VERY heavy brocade bedspread. I'm almost convinced it will prove waterproof, and may take it with me and use it as a pup tent this summer, as a "test run"...

>>What I am wondering is would 10 oz. duck canvas (100% cotton) work for a >>period pavilion? It is 58/60" and retails at $5.98/yd. In my experience 10oz canvas is quite a decent material to work with. The Borough of Southwark Trayned Bandes kitchen and bath tent is made of 10oz canvas, and it has held up rather well. It is quite large -- about 15'x10' by 9' high, and while it is difficult it is not impossible for one person to carry the bundled cloth. 10oz cotton canvas can shrink a lot. A lot a lot. If you don't pre-shrink the tent, you will have a lot of trouble. It is, mind you, not a pavilion. It is very much a tent. I don't relish the idea of sewing all the intricate bits of a pavilion with such a heavy fabric. There are other sorts of tent nylon, which will result in less embarrassment when you look your visitors in the eye and tell them it's silk. Some are coated, and are quite water-resistant; but of course the coated nylons don't breathe worth a damn. My primary dwelling tent is 8oz cotton twill. Works for me.

I recently attended a meeting of the medieval dress and textile solution and heard that Edward 1sts campaign tents were made out of multiple layers of linen canvas, if wool works so well why did he resort to linen? the stuff kept wearing out and a major expense in his campaigns was upkeep of the tents. they were also difficult to transport because they were so bulky with many layers of cloth required for each tent The only thing I could think of was that wool absorbs water and takes a while to dry, but with multiple layers making up Edward's tents, I would have thought the linen would have held water as well. Did Edward have access to more linen and less wool or something? I get on fine with my woolly tent, any thoughts from you canvas campers on why the switch to linen happened?

GENERAL PAVILION--CARE/MAINTENANCE

Our tent got soaked and we didn't do the right thing. Because of our sloth, our walls now have spots of mold all over them. I used some bleach on them which killed the mold but the spots remain.Does anybody know of a product/method of getting mold off of canvas? , ==Ld. Nicolas Bradwater

Rinse your tent off immediately w/ lots of water. The bleach if not rinsed completely will eat right through the tent. Ammonia solution should remove most of the mold. But start first w/ liquid soap and a stiff brush. If that doesn't work, ammonia and then lots of hot sun as sun is a natural bleach. - Marisela

tent got soaked and we didn't do the right thing. Because of our > sloth, our walls now have spots of mold all over them. I used some bleach > on them which killed the mold but the spots remain. **Unfortunately, my lord, you've probably ruined your canvas. Mold begins to eat holes in the fabric and bleach DOES eat holes in the fabric, destroying any waterproof qualities it may have had. You can remove the stains first with vinegar, and if that doesn't work use diluted, powder laundry detergent. You will then need to completely re waterproof your tent. Army navy surplus carries a very heavy duty paint on waterproofing that will do the trick, but you must let the tent stand to air out for a LOOOOOONG time and apply it several times. I certainly hope someone has a better suggestion, but in my experience, that's about it.>

First off, you don't wait five months to get started -- however, that's irrelevant now. Find a BIG flat space, and on a day when the weather report indicates 2-3 days of sunshine spread the thing out, sweep or vacuum the grossest of the mildew fungus off. (If you get hives just being near it, better use a vacuum.) Then sprinkle or spray it with a weak solution of lemon juice (about 2:1) and let that stand in the sunlight all day, repeat the next day (maybe a third if you're lucky), and on the afternoon of the last day fold it up and bring it in. For further details check "Helpful Hints" by almost anybody like Heloise.

The short answer is, Chlorine bleach. This will not only kill the mildew fungi, it will bleach out the stains. The answer is lengthened by two considerations: 1.How to apply the bleach to the fabric, and how to keep it from wiping out the local environment. What you need is a large flat area on which to lay out the pavilion top and apply the bleach, from which the runoff won't run off into any local watercourse. I can't tell from your net ID where you are located. A flat field or vacant lot might work, so long as you can hook up a hose to the water supply. Spray or sponge the bleach onto the fabric; wait till the stains disappear; and rinse it off with lots and lots of water. The bleach will break down after a while, but in the meantime you want it to be sufficiently diluted that it doesn't kill anything but the mildew. 2.After that, you will probably want to restore the waterproofing to the fabric. How you do this will depend on what the waterproofing was in the first place. ScotchGuard? Paraffin wax? Intrinsically tight weave? Talk to the place that sold you the fabric, and/or your local hardware store.And next time it gets mildewed, don't ride in the same compartment with it if you're allergic to it. Next time you might stop breathing, and that would never do.

For all those with mildewed tents, I bear tidings...of possible unhappiness. According to my source at the Denver Tent Company/American Canvas in Denver, the first-try cure for mildew is to set up your tent and hit it with the hose and a scrubber to see if you can knock it loose that way. If this does not work, he says as a LAST result, because this may well weaken your tent, to try a solution of 3 parts water to one part chlorine bleach applied to a corner spot -- scrub it out and rinse VERY well as any bleach left in will cause the fabric to deteriorate. Allow it to dry THOROUGHLY, and see what the result is before applying to your entire affected area. The bad news, he says, is that if it already has *that* smell, the fabric may already be damaged -- he says it will feel brittle and weak in your hands. In this case, he says, there is little hope for the recovery of your pristine tent. (This is all assuming a natural canvas tent -- I didn't ask about synthetics) In any case, he says, you should hose the mildew off as best you can as soon as you can to prevent or lessen fabric damage. And let it dry in the sun (making sure you've rinsed any Clorox out thoroughly), as evidently sun power has some brightening and beastie-killing effects.

Respected friend: Large lawn+large stiff brush+large bottle mildicide from Janitor's supplies store+large supply elbow grease+large stack of patches+large canvas awl+large spool of waxed linen thread= Fixed. Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings, but mildew grows by eating the fiber it grows on. You've got that much mildew, you've got holes. Brace yourself.

It appears to me that the _easiest_ way to deal with a mildewed tent is to take it to a carpet cleaner. Not the kind that comes to your house and does steam cleaning, but the kind that can really wash/clean the tent in a tank. They have anti-mildew agents and can deal with large swaths of fragile wet fabric. Plus, they can ScotchGuard, if that's your chosen form of water repellency.

At A recent practicum (learning event) we had a class on tent making from a lady who has made canvas tents all her life (having learned the craft at a young age from her mother). Her thoughts on Mildew were thus "Prevention is the Best Way". ON bringing a wet tent home she suggests airing it as well as possible before storing it. She suggests the basement or the lawn on the next available sunny day. She Continues: "Washing with soaps or detergents will usually remove all waterproofing . Periodically, Dissolve 1/2 cup of baking soda in a gallon of warm water. Brush LIGHTLY into canvas. RINSE ,and let dry out. ***For Mildew, put 1/2 cup of javex in a gallon of warm water. Brush lightly into canvas, rinse well, let dry in the sun. ***In desperation (ONLY), put 1/2 cup soap (NEVER DETERGENTS) in a gallon of warm water {and proceed as above}. ******THESE LAST 2 TREATMENTS WILL PROBABLE TAKE OUT MOST OF THE WATERPROOFING *******" (this is quoted verbatim, all uppercase hers) She went on to suggest retreating with Aquatite, a waterproofing agent. She of the ladies up here have used Thompson's Waterseal on their tents with good results too! Good Luck!

But start first w/liquid soap and a stiff brush.

Not if the tent is made of certain kinds of sail canvas. Any oil or grease, which soap is, will cause the natural water repellence of the canvas to cease. In other words, it may leak. This no soap advice was from the maker of my pavilion. Alisoun Fortescue of Maplehurst 

GENERAL PAVILION-STOVES/FIRES/LIGHTING

. We have a small wood-burning stove for those events when it is a little nippy (we woke up one morning to find 3 inches of snow on the ground, and didn't know it had stormed until we peeked out.

GENERAL PAVLION--CONSTRUCTION

I have made quite a few of these things, and all you need is a decent sewing machine, about 30-40 yds of fabric, lots o'needles, and some time with a little bit of creativity. Anyone who can sew a straight line and can do simple geometry (I mean pocket calculator simple, if I can do it, anyone can!), can build a good looking period tent. The fabric can often be purchased on sale for 1-2 dollars a yard. In addition, the more interior support structure (wall poles, etc) a tent has, the more likely it is that it is a non-period structure. Again, many of the pre-purchased have unnecessary structures in them

. - My pavilion appears to be a circular medieval tent with a tall conical roof and nearly vertical walls, with a flag flapping at the peak. The inside diameter is 14 feet (two double beds plus stowage), and the total height is about 12 feet. It is in vertical black and red (well, pink nowadays) stripes. There is a single central pole, and 16 guy ropes from the edge of the roof. There is a bright yellow cloth please-do-not-trip-over-these-guy-ropes strip on short stakes around the perimeter of the guy ropes. There is an interior floor. It has so far proven bomb-proof in hostile weather. The whole thing, including the hammer, weighs just 42 pounds. The pole sections fit crossways inside a Rabbit. It is air-transportable, at least in theory. The whole thing can be erected by one person in just 30 minutes, without heroics or great mental effort, at 5:30 am in a rain storm by a very tired person who has just been driving for 12 hours straight. - It appears thoroughly medieval. From a respectable distance. - From close up you find that almost all the materials are modern, from the heavy nylon packcloth walls and nylon snap buckles and nylon ropes to the galvanized top rail from a chain link fence. Four short sections of these galvanized poles, with their swaged ends, form the centre pole. Apart from the shape, just about the only period detail is a custom brass fitting at the peak for the centre pole. The whole thing took me something over 200 hours, which includes *all* design time, *all* shopping time, etc. - James Prescott (james@nucleus.cuc.ab.ca), (403) 282-0541

TO CALCULATE YARDAGE FOR A PEAKED ROOF /CENTERPOLE PAVILION--I'd be happy to help you calculate the size of the four triangle-shaped pieces of material for your roof, though, if you wish. If you think of each triangle as the bottom of the triangle being the side that is sewn to the top of the walls, you can do a bit of math to figure it out. Let's see if I can explain that method I use:

How to make a round pavilion--As Winifred pointed out I made two round pointy pavillions. The first was a prototype and is little more than a store tent. The second one was intended for me and my lady to live in at Pennsic and is roughly 15' internal diameter. The minor guylines go out about 18" but the three main guy lines go out about 6'. Fitting the pavillion in a 20' square is reasonable and keeping my youngest daughter in the tent gives us about 130sq ft each for a large and imposing period pavillion. (Note. The reason for the 15' diameter was that it allows a double bed to fit between the pole and the walls. My goal was a 14' diameter but I was not going to waste material when the roof panels provided a little extra.)

Cost. Last time I calculated the cost, I estimated $350 to replace the pavillion, including all ropes, poles grommets and other incidentals.

Packing size. The fabric, ropes, pegs and hoop sections make a 5'6" bundle. The main pole was intended to be 3 6' sections but I forgot to allow for the joints and have since shortened one of the sections. A second attempt would make them fit in the 5'6" bundle. I can't swear to the bundle being a foot in diameter but is not much bigger than that.

Weight. The pavillion weighs about 100 pounds all told.

Time to erect. Under most conditions, I can erect the pavillion, without help, in under an hour. One or two helpers can get it up faster. More than two helpers are a waste of energy. High wind can make life difficult if not impossible. There are a number of designs that require precision placement of guy lines (Designs that have the guy line be integral with a roof seam) but I rejected them as being too fussy to erect. The hoop is very forgiving in this respect. One of my worst experiences was with rocky ground which tended to break my wooden stakes.

Design. The pavillion consists of a roof and a set of wall panels. The roof is held up by a single center pole. The edge of the roof is held out by an integral hoop. There are three guy lines to the top of the center pole. There are eight crows feet to the hoop. The walls button onto the roof at the hoop and are staked to the ground.

The roof is made as a smooth circular cone. The tip of the cone is a 3" hole reinforced with a leather collar. The collar is pierced by four grommets through wich a harness is tied. This harness is lasthed to the top of the center pole. { I tried to use Cariadoc's system of a pulley and hoist to raise the roof. With the light fabric used I found it faster to lash the roof to the pole and hoist both at the same time. )

At the edge of the roof is sewn a line of dagging and a cloth tube which carries the hoop. The inside of the tube is smooth so that there is nothing for the hoop sections to catch on. Assembling the hoop is the slowest part of the erection process. The hoop consists of 11 lengths of Schedule 40 3/4" PVC pipe. A 6" dowel plug is screwed into one end of each section so that 3" protrudes. Ideally, 10 sections are left in the cloth tube when the roof is taken down. (Since the roof consists of 10 panels, this matches the obvious folding pattern).

At regular intervals, crows foot ropes punch through the seam between the roof and the dagging and form loops around the cloth tube. There are eight sets of crows feet and four lines to each crows foot. There is a 3/4" hem between the tube and the dagging. This hem is pierced with grommet holes for the lines and the the buttons to which the walls attach. I believe that it is important for the lines to loop around the hoop, so as to avoid the lines pulling out of the roof.

The walls are simple strips of cloth. They are not shaped to provide a flair. The top edge has a series of grommet holes for the buttons, the bottom edge has a series of stake loops. The walls are long enough to overlap by 6'. This allows people to move in and out when it is raining without letting the rain into the pavillion. It also allow the walls to be run in to the center pole on sunny days, turning about a third of the tent into a public sun shade.

The walls are 5'6" high. This puts the buttons at eye level, speeding erection of the pavillion. The dags are 12" tall, so it is necessary to duck to enter the pavillion (unless one is a child or really short).

The pavillion is made from polycotton sailcloth or gabardine. It has not been waterproofed. Nevertheless, it keeps the rain out (except for a fine mist when the rain is hitting rally hard. The tension on the roof seems to persuade the rain to bounce or run off. The walls tend to saturate in heavy rain but the pavillion is large enough that it is easy to keep away from the walls.

The roof consists of 10 panels cut as sections of a 11' radius circle. They were cut from 60" wide fabric. (Actually, the thare 5 full panels and 5 panels made from two halves). I used french seams to join the panels and a dressmakers sewing machine for all of the sewing. I wanted a better than 45 degree angle to the roof so the roof panel radius needs to be about 1 1/2 times the radius of the hoop.

The dags are sewn to each other as well as to the roof. If the dags are not sewn to each other, the will flip up in a light wind and expose the gap between the walls and the roof. Ventilation might be good but letting the rain in is not such a good idea. I used 55 dags, roughly 12" wide.

The walls can be as tall as the maker desires. Add panels the width of the fabric until they are long enough. I made mine in two sections to allow a back door into the tent. In practice, this door is rarely used and the fabric is light enough that the full length is easily managed.

The center pole I made from 2" square ash. I bought a length of 1 1/2" iron pipe for the joints and used a rasp to shape the ash to fit the joints. This is seriously heavier than it needs to be but it does mean that I have no fears of it failing while I am asleep or out of the encampment. The ropes are heavy manilla for the same reasons. The top 9" of the center pole is shaved down so that the guy lines will not slip down when tied to the pole. I tie one line to the top of the roof with a sheet bend and then tie it to the pole with a clove hitch. The other line is twice as long and I use a clove hitch to tie the center of it to the pole.

The pavillion is now in its seventh year and is beginning to show signs of age in that some seams are beinning to pull.

Steps to erect pavillion.

1.Lay out roof. Lay out hoop sections in rough circle. 2.Fit sections of hoop together and lock into full circle. 3.Assemble pole and poke tip through hole in top of roof. 4.Tie guy lines to roof and top of pole. Move base of pole to desired center of pavillion position. Set stakes for guylines in rough equilateral triangle centered on base of pole. 5.Move top of pole to midway between two stakes. Add pennent. Drop guy lines on two stakes. 6.Use helper or additional stakes to stop bottom of pole from moveing while hauling on third guy line. Once pole is vertical drop guy line over third stake (Steps 5 and 6 assume that the pavillion has been set up before so that the guy lines are close to the right length and that the stakes are in the roughly the same places). Having a helper on each guy line is a good idea, provided that they can adjust the guy lines. 7.Tie a guy line to each crows foot (I use a sheet bend). This guy line is staked close to vertical to resist the roof lifting. 8.Stake down each guy line line. 9.Button the walls to the roof. 10.Stake down the walls

8a. Move all of your belongings into the tent. It is a lot easier to do this before the walls go up because you can walk through where the walls are going to go.

Note. Crows foot. This is a fan of lighter lines than a guy line which goes from a guy line to the edge of the roof of the pavillion in many drawings of period pavillions. I believe that the intent is to spread the strain of holding the tent against the wind over a large section of the hoop. Using a single line would focus the strain a one point which might break the hoop and thus cause the tent to collapse. My crows feet consist of two loops that cross.

| | | |

\ \ / / \ \ / / \ \ / / \ \/ / \ /\ / ------ -------

The guy line ties around both loop tightly enough that the strains can be equalized between the elements of the crows foot.

Shopping list.

6' x 6" x 8/4 Ash (get the lumberyard to ripsaw it into 6'x2"x2") 12" of 1 1/2" galvanized iron pipe (hardware or pumbing supply) (use hacksaw to cut in half) 44yds 60"polycotton sailcloth (fabric store) 150ft 1/2" manilla (hardware store) 200ft 1/4" manilla (hardware store) 2 sq ft 2-3oz leather (leather supplier) 6 12' 3/4" Sch40 PVC pipe (hardware or pumbing supply) 6' 3/4" dowel (hardware) 24 1/2" countersunk wood screws (hardware) lots of grommets. (hardware) 36 toggle buttons (fabric store) 11 big stakes for guy lines (hardware store or local smith) 12 smaller stakes for the walls (camping supply)

The leather is to reinforce the grommets as wells as form the collar. Grommets have a depressing tendency to pull out if simply set into the cloth.

The cloth gets used like this

3yds = 1 plus 2 half roof panels 15yds = complete roof.

2yds = one section of wall 24yds = complete wall

2 yds = tube 3 yds = dagging There is no need to make a plain tent. Mine uses five colors because that was what they had in stock when I went shopping.

The main guy lines need to be 25' to 30'. The crows foot guy lines need to be 8' to 10'. The light manilla is for the crows feet which take 2 6' pieces each and for the button strings. I run one string between two buttons. Absolute ruglar spacing is a must, otherwise the wall will only fit one way and you nedd to work harder putting the tent up (or you live with the door in the wrong place). Extra light line will find a use (lacing walls shut, hoop to center pole partition lines, etc.).

When making the poles fit the sockets, make one side fit tightly. Make the other side fit and then soak in linseed oil and shape to a loose fit again. If you ignore this step, the joint will swell in the first rain and you will not be able to separate the joint when the time comes to pack up and go home. The choice of oil is not critical, getting the wood saturated with something that will not dry out is critical. Galvanized iron pipe will resist rust better than painted.

/ /roof / _________seam line, with breaks for crows / / foot line / v grommeted hole for button string or ===== | crows foot line ===== v | ====== ===========\ | ====== ===\ tube \ Cloth tube should be a | \ for | close fit for the PVC | \hoop / pipe but not tight. | ----- |dag |

Choose toggle buttons that will fit through your grommet holes or grommets that will fit your toggles. A button every 18" is adequate and a ground stake every 5' (i.e. at every seam) has worked well enough. Extra stake options near the door can simplify life. Placing a stake under each button in this region is a good idea.

How to Make a medieval pavilion Making a medieval event look better is very simple, one method is to make a period tent. Tents for period camping can be constructed from many materials and methods. This article will outline and suggest some of the steps of the tent making process. The article was written with non-Viking tents in mind, but many of the same principles will work on Viking tents.

Pre planning

The first step in the construction of a tent is the planing of the tent. This is best accomplished by playing "2-D" doll house. Begin with two pieces of graph paper, assume one square equals one square foot. Cut one of the pieces into the size and shape of the items that will be going into the tent ( bed, table, chairs, armour pile, cooler, etc...). Next arrange the cut-outs on the other piece of graph paper to determine the best size and shape for you, remember leave room for movement. Decide on the height of the walls, 6 to 7 feet is common. Also decide on the height of the center of the tent or decide on the roof slope, a slope of 45 degrees works well. A slope of less then 30 degrees will lead to puddling at the sides and a slope of over 60 degrees wastes fabric.

Some items that need to be thought about are floors, windows, and doors. Another thing to consider is what type of vehicle the tent will be transported in i.e. a school bus or a VW.

Also think as to how the tent will be set up. Most tents should be able to be set up in the dark, with rain coming down, in less than 30 minutes by one person.

Fabric choice

The next step is fabric choice. Most of this choice is based on availability of the fabrics.

The price on most of these is between $3 to $6 per yard. A number 69 nylon thread is recommended. *(not used by author, yet)

fabric Advantages Disadvantages

Canvas period Mildew and rot 6 to 16 oz./sq yd easy to work Needs treatment (water resistance, etc..) Heavy when wet.

Nylon Treated (urethane coating) Not Period 400 denier (pack cloth) Does not absorb water damaged by prolonged to 1000 denier (cadere) mildew resistant exposure to sunlight (3+yrs)

Silk* Period Expensive

Vinyl Water PROOF NOT period Mildew resistant heavy

Misc. Fabrics less than $2/yd wild cards.

(Sheets, bargain bins, etc...

Some sources are local fabric/ upholstery stores. A few wholesale sources are:

Trident 305 726 0270 1st's and 2nd's Canvas and nylon Astrup 216 696 2800 1st's Canvas and nylons National Dye Works 800 321 3931 nylons and canvas Claredon Textiles 800 752 1332 Canvas

Seam choice

There are two methods of sewing tents. The first is to hand sew it, good luck it is not quick. The second and easier method is to use a machine. It has been found that the best choice is to use a industrial walking foot machine, next choice is an old heavy straight stitch machine. Many of the newer plastic machines can not handle the thread let alone the fabric. The quicker the machine the less time that you will spend sewing.

When deciding of the seams to use think about finished edges, strength, and water tightness. The best two seam are either the French seam or the flat fled seam. Both of these have advantages and disadvantages, listed below.

Seam Disadvantage Advantage

French not as pretty 33 to 50% savings in time slightly less strong * 1 set of stitches to leak

Flat fled Almost twice as much work looks nice Two rows of stitches to leak slightly stronger

*(author's first tent has lasted over 10 years with this style seam)

Calculating yardage

One of the next steps in planning is to figure the yardage needed. First decide on the width of the fabric, the wider the better, 60" is common.

Roof To figure the roof length use the Pythagorean theorem (a*a)+(b*b)=(c*c), a is the horizontal distance from the center pole to the wall and b is the vertical distance from the walls to the peak, hence c= the distance along the roof from the peak to the top of the walls. (if doing a circle tent use attached chart.) Remember that seams use up about 2".{an example is a 10' round tent with 60" material and a 45 degree slope (5x5=25, 25+25=50, Square root of 50=7.1' , this plus 2" is the length of the radius of the pie shaped pieces. Next the number of pieces is 10 x 3.14(pi)=31', 31'/5'= 6 pieces. }

Walls To figure the walls, compute the circumference of the tent and then divide by the width of the fabric, allowing a few inches per seam. Then multiply this number by the height in yards. Remember to use the same units, {an example is. a 10' round tent with 7' walls ( circumference = 31.4'. using 45" material (43/12=3.58') (31.4/3.58=8.77 Panels@7') so 9 panels at 7'=(9x7/3)=21yds}

Floor If you wish to have a floor it can be figured by taking the width of the tent and dividing it by the fabric width minus a few inches for seams, this will give the number of panels. The length of the panels is the length of the tent plus a few inches for the seams. Multiply the number of panels by the length and compute the number of yards. Also add for doors, windows etc...

Daggs Daggs (valance) are computed by taking the fabric width and dividing it by the width of the dagg plus seam allowance and then dividing the circumference of the tent by that number.

Extras Porches are a very nice addition on a tent, they can be figured the same way a floor was.

Some things to do to cover mistakes. Always round up. Check your math again and have a friend check it also. Order approximately 10% extra.

Below are calculated yardage for common size and shape tents. The assumptions are: 60" wide fabric, 45 degree slope, 6' walls and 12" daggs.

Roof Walls Floor Daggs Total 10' Round 10 yds 14yds 7 yds 2yds 33 yds 10' Square 10 yds 16 yds 7 yds 3 yds 36 yds 15' x10' 15 yds 20 yds 10 yds 4 yds 49 yds

Remember always order more, bags and flags can be made from scraps and extra material.

Cutting

Cutting the fabric is the next step. It is recommended to have a long space to do this, but it can be done in a small space also. The tools needed are a tape measure, a chalk line, and a pair of scissors. Using two people to cut the fabric is recommended. When the yardage was calculated the piece size should have been calculated. For cutting long straight cuts a chalk line is very useful. For doing large (long) pieces in a small space mark the fabric using chalk to the length of the area and then repeat until the complete piece is measured.

Sewing

After the fabric is cut, it is time to sew it. You will be doing many very long seams moving large amounts of fabric through the machine. It is very handy to have a second person to help move or "help" the fabric through the machine. (Some of the fabrics are coated, normally the coating goes in the inside, be aware of this when sewing this type of fabric.)

Use the type of seam that was decided upon and try to begin by sewing the smaller pieces first and then move to the larger ones, this will give you practice using the machine and moving the material. Many people will pin the seams to assure that they will not slip, it is your choice based on your sewing experience. Some will iron in between passes of stitches, this allows for easier sewing and crisper seams ( this should not be tried of fabrics that will melt ), but it is also very difficult on larger tents.

Don't worry if your edges don't line up after a seam is done, sewing a tent has larger tolerances that sewing garb. Think about the upscale in size. When sewing think about were the poles and ropes will be, a grommet will probable be used here. It is best if these are attached at points that have been reinforced with at least 4 layers of the base material. This reinforcement should be sewn in place when you can still get to the location with the machine.

Water "proofing"

Very few tents are water proof, most are water resistant. There are many ways to keep the rain out of a tent.

If nylon fabric is used then it normally comes with a polyurethane coating on one side, this side is normally on the inside of the tent, so all you have to do is the seal the seams. A good product for this is " seam sealer" by K-kote, it can be purchased at many camping and sporting goods stores. After a few years of use the nylon will need to be recoated K-kote also makes a recoating product, this can also double as a seam sealer.

If canvas has been used the best water "proofer" is Thomson's or an equivalent brand (less expensive). The best way to use this is to place the tent parts in a large clean container ( a new 30 gallon trash can is a good suggestion) and pour the water "proofer" over the tent until it saturates the fabric. Then take the tent our and either set it up or hang it our to dry (be aware of the fumes). Spraying a tent roof with a garden sprayer has many problems, some of them are: it will kill the grass under the area sprayed, very difficult to reach high ceilings, wasted water "proofer" on grass, persons doing spraying the water"proofer" etc.., uneven coating.

For those interested in a period method canvas and beeswax will work, but this is VERY FLAMMABLE. It also would not fold well for transport.

Poles, ropes and stakes

Poles Poles can be any thing that will support the tent. A max. length should be decided on based on the transport vehicle. If your poles are longer that this some suggestions for braking them into smaller pieces are EMT (metal conduit, very inexpensive) or chain link fence top rails ( they are great, one end is "necked" and they are inexpensive). If you can use wood ones, closet rods and 2x2 work well and look better.

For round tents that are true circles or marques that have true semi-circle ends a hoop constructed from dome tent poles or fiberglass chain link tension rods works well. PVC piping does not work as well.

Ropes Any type of rope will work, a good diameter is 3/16" to 5/16", material choice is same as fabric choice (see above chart).

Stakes The best all around stake is a 12" spike. These are very inexpensive, durable, and easy to drive. Tire irons, dog stakes (giant corkscrews), re-bar, etc...have been used as stakes.

Research and documentation

Some good sources for ideas are contemporary pictures found in most books. A good topic to look at are Armouring books, many times tents will be shown on the Lyst field or on the battle field.

Two very good books are listed below.

"King Rene's Book of Love" ISBN 0-8076-0989-7. The cover of the book shows a tent with a window in the side wall and a floor. There are also other tents inside.

"Henry VIII and the invasion of France" by Cruickshank ISBN 0-86299-768-2. This is the best book describing tents and camping. There are no pictures, but it is good reading. It has a whole chapter on camping.

The author of this is Geoffrey Maynard of York, this was wriitten to save time in explaining the first steps in building a tent. Geoffrey Maynard resides in Trimaris, shire of Starhaven (Melbourne FL) and has constructed quite a few tents for himself and friends.

Copyright Geoffrey Maynard, 1997. This article may be copied by anyone desiring to use it for educational purposes as long as you mention my name and send me a copy of the newsletter.

<the end>

how to make a Medieval Pavilion Steps - Planning 1) Determine size and shape. The width of the fabric should be taken into account when determining the size. Plan for one or two center poles, the slope of the top, and how many other poles with placement. Poles are commonly placed a maximum of 6 feet apart at the perimeter. If you plan to add walls later on, you'll want to think about placing the poles no farther apart than 4 feet. The style of pavilion will also dictate where the poles are. 2) What color(s) do you want? Not all fabrics come in the colors you might want, and canvas is fairly restricted in colors. Remember to visualize the colors together or you might end up with something that looks like a giant fruit. 3) What dag shape did you want? square, rectangular, keyhole, triangular, heater. Make a template of the dag style you want. Dags on average are commonly 12 to 16 inches long and 12 inches wide. 4) Make a drawing of size and shape, two views at least. Then make a setup drawing of pavilion, showing how it would look on the field. 5) Make a cutting plan. This helps if you have a non-rectangular shape. 6) Optional items. Painting on dags and/or Top. Backdrop. Floor. Barrier. Break-down or single piece poles. And waterproofing. Backdrop, Barrier, and Floor Covering.

Items needed: Yardstick, Tape Measure, and a long straight edge. Chalk and Pencil. Pavilion drawings and Templates. Dag Template. Scissors, sharp. Sew Machine. An old steel one works best with Duck and Canvas. Fabric (with 2 yds extra). Lots of thread, about 900 yds worth for a 10'x15' Oval. Use a cotton covered polyester thread for strength. Poles and steel rod, Grommets and leather, Parachute Line, Stakes, and Line Tighteners. Optional items: paint, waterproofing, designs to paint.

Order of Construction

1) PRE-SHRINKING The fabric needs to be pre-shrunk, otherwise it will shrink funny after the first time it gets wet. For the larger pavilions you will need to run a test piece through the washer and dryer, measuring before and after to figure out the percent shrinkage. Allow for the shrinkage if you cut out the pieces before washing. Sometimes you will need to iron the fabric after drying. 2) CUTTING Cut the pieces out of fabric, remember to allow 1 inch seam allowance for each fabric piece. Using cutting layout if you have it. When cutting out dags, fold fabric in quarters so you can get more dags with less cutting. If dags are symmetrical, then you can waste less material. Dags only need 1/2 inch seam allowance. Here you would also cut out the pennants for poles. IMPORTANT: Be sure to track which piece goes where before you start sewing. Any painting of dags and pennants are done now. 2) SEWING Pin the pavilion pieces together for sewing. Start with the seam in the center of the pavilion and work outward. Make sure all the seams are getting sewn on the same side out. Use a French or Jean seam. The dags and pennants are sewn with the painted surface inside to be turned right-side out. After the pavilion top is sewn all together, start sewing the dags on. The dags should sewn on so the side it face out is against the top side of the pavilion. Use the same French or Jean seam on connecting dags to pavilion top, then sew again around the seam. 3) POLES Either machine or hand sew leather squares on the pavilion where the grommets are going. The leather pieces need to go on the bottom side of the pavilion. Then put the grommets in. Now the Top is done. Make your poles to the height you wanted. Remember to make the center pole(s) to the height you planned for. Drill the holes in the poles for the pennant rods. Cut the rods long enough for the hole depth plus pennant height and 3 inches. Paint the poles if you wanted. If you paint, use an oil based paint for durability and make sure you also paint the ends. Make the line tighteners out of dowel rod or old broom handles. 4) FINISHING Now your pavilion can be setup and used, or you can waterproof it now. A note on waterproofing: Only immersion and brushing methods truly get the waterproofing into the fabric.

Suggested Fabrics: Roof - Canvas, 10oz. Duck, Trigger, Sportsweight, and Silk. Backdrop/Barrier -Canvas, Duck, Sportsweight, Broadcloth, Sheeting, and Silk Dags - Broadcloth, Sheeting, and Silk (for flapping in the breeze.)

By H.L. Marke von Mainz, Moon Shadow Pavilions Mooneschadowe, Ansteorra

<the end>ow to make a Medieval Pavilion

Steps - Planning 1) Determine size and shape. The width of the fabric should be taken into account when determining the size. Plan for one or two center poles, the slope of the top, and how many other poles with placement. Poles are commonly placed a maximum of 6 feet apart at the perimeter. If you plan to add walls later on, you'll want to think about placing the poles no farther apart than 4 feet. The style of pavilion will also dictate where the poles are. 2) What color(s) do you want? Not all fabrics come in the colors you might want, and canvas is fairly restricted in colors. Remember to visualize the colors together or you might end up with something that looks like a giant fruit. 3) What dag shape did you want? square, rectangular, keyhole, triangular, heater. Make a template of the dag style you want. Dags on average are commonly 12 to 16 inches long and 12 inches wide. 4) Make a drawing of size and shape, two views at least. Then make a setup drawing of pavilion, showing how it would look on the field. 5) Make a cutting plan. This helps if you have a non-rectangular shape. 6) Optional items. Painting on dags and/or Top. Backdrop. Floor. Barrier. Break-down or single piece poles. And waterproofing. Backdrop, Barrier, and Floor Covering.

Items needed: Yardstick, Tape Measure, and a long straight edge. Chalk and Pencil. Pavilion drawings and Templates. Dag Template. Scissors, sharp. Sew Machine. An old steel one works best with Duck and Canvas. Fabric (with 2 yds extra). Lots of thread, about 900 yds worth for a 10'x15' Oval. Use a cotton covered polyester thread for strength. Poles and steel rod, Grommets and leather, Parachute Line, Stakes, and Line Tighteners. Optional items: paint, waterproofing, designs to paint.

Order of Construction

1) PRE-SHRINKING The fabric needs to be pre-shrunk, otherwise it will shrink funny after the first time it gets wet. For the larger pavilions you will need to run a test piece through the washer and dryer, measuring before and after to figure out the percent shrinkage. Allow for the shrinkage if you cut out the pieces before washing. Sometimes you will need to iron the fabric after drying. 2) CUTTING Cut the pieces out of fabric, remember to allow 1 inch seam allowance for each fabric piece. Using cutting layout if you have it. When cutting out dags, fold fabric in quarters so you can get more dags with less cutting. If dags are symmetrical, then you can waste less material. Dags only need 1/2 inch seam allowance. Here you would also cut out the pennants for poles. IMPORTANT: Be sure to track which piece goes where before you start sewing. Any painting of dags and pennants are done now. 2) SEWING Pin the pavilion pieces together for sewing. Start with the seam in the center of the pavilion and work outward. Make sure all the seams are getting sewn on the same side out. Use a French or Jean seam. The dags and pennants are sewn with the painted surface inside to be turned right-side out. After the pavilion top is sewn all together, start sewing the dags on. The dags should sewn on so the side it face out is against the top side of the pavilion. Use the same French or Jean seam on connecting dags to pavilion top, then sew again around the seam. 3) POLES Either machine or hand sew leather squares on the pavilion where the grommets are going. The leather pieces need to go on the bottom side of the pavilion. Then put the grommets in. Now the Top is done. Make your poles to the height you wanted. Remember to make the center pole(s) to the height you planned for. Drill the holes in the poles for the pennant rods. Cut the rods long enough for the hole depth plus pennant height and 3 inches. Paint the poles if you wanted. If you paint, use an oil based paint for durability and make sure you also paint the ends. Make the line tighteners out of dowel rod or old broom handles. 4) FINISHING Now your pavilion can be setup and used, or you can waterproof it now. A note on waterproofing: Only immersion and brushing methods truly get the waterproofing into the fabric.

Suggested Fabrics: Roof - Canvas, 10oz. Duck, Trigger, Sportsweight, and Silk. Backdrop/Barrier -Canvas, Duck, Sportsweight, Broadcloth, Sheeting, and Silk Dags - Broadcloth, Sheeting, and Silk (for flapping in the breeze.)

By H.L. Marke von Mainz, Moon Shadow Pavilions Mooneschadowe, Ansteorra

GENERAL PAVILION--SETTING UP

LBAN@delphi.COM wrote:> From what I've seen, Max's suggestions for raising a pavillion > are the same for whatever type you're trying to put up. If it's a > one-center-pole tent, do the high wind lines, put up the center > pole, and then the side poles. > If it's a two-center-pole , with or without ridge pole, it's the high > wind lines, one center pole, the other center pole, then the side > poles. > If it's a Viking A-frame, it's the high wind lines, one end of the > A-frame uprights, then the other end, and then stake everything > else down.

If I could offer a few options for the above.....I have had no experience with the marquee pavillions that use no ridge pole, but I have put up the ones with ridge poles, and it is much easier to stake out your perimeter poles first, then raise the ridge. The only part that really needs more than one person to put up is the ridge raising. The same is true for my personal tent, what Panther Primitives call the Regents pavillion, and other makers call mitred octagon (mine's a Panther). The four corner poles go up first, then the center pole. This can be done (and usually is) by one person. As for A-frames, my other tent is a wedge, also from Panter, that sets up in 15 minutes with two uprights and a ridge pole with no ropes. This is a great tent that fits in at many period events, has plenty of room, isn't terribly expensive, and is easy to set up. The previous poster who was flaming about the "bitching" about modern tents would do well to check out what's available in more authentic tentage before lashing out at folks.But that's just my opinion.Tigranes of Bezabde East, AEthelmearc, Endless Hills

>Another consideration to take into account is just WHO will be putting up this pavilion if you do decide to purchase/make one. I have frequently yearned for one myself, however as I'm not with a household and frequently camp alone, it might be possible for me to put up a Pavillion myself. But put it up by myself on the same night I arrived at site and stay sane? I don't know about that.

It takes 45 minutes or less, one person, in the dark, to set up a 15+ foot round pavilion; 6' at the sides, 13' in the center. The first time.

KEY tricks: by keradwc an cai

Portable holes. Stakes which are pounded into the ground with a slot, hole, or method of attaching an upright. If these are used for the center pole(s), you're free to set that up first. Measuring rope. A rope which has knots at the distance from center pole to side poles Center pole to guyrope stake positions (or sidepole to guyrope, though that requires the side poles to be in place before the stakes are planted, which is much more work. Side-pole to side-pole distance OPTIONAL, but very handy: ground cloth with all upright positions marked.

With a few portable holes, and such a measuring device, you should be able to set up just about any *round* pavilion in 30 minutes or less, if you are strong enough to lift the roof.

1. Center pole holes set up. If it's a multi-piece pole, only set up about 5-8' worth of it, and do the final roof-raising last. 2. measure out side pole holders (if any), and stakes. pound stakes, and put guyrope near each one. 3. Put up a side pole, and attach it to the guyrope. Don't snug the rope too tightly. 4. Repeat for other sides. (I usually go center-left-right-far left-far right, etc, alternating sides, as that seems to work well.) 5. Finish lifting the center pole, and adjust ropes as necessary. 6. Stake down the sides of the pavilion, or attach sides and stake them down, if they're separate.

By planting the stakes in the right place, steps 3,4, and 5 are very easy, and can be done at your convenience, without having to have someone hold a side-pole while they're being pounded in. By having a sturdy centerpole portable hole, you avoid having to anchor it temporarily with guyropes (which is what I had to do that first time) to keep it up. Portable holes for side poles are merely a convenience, and can be skipped for most designs.

Note: all of the above presumes a symmetric pavilion with upright sides. Internal suspension designs are a different matter.

Note also that more people DO make this work more easily, but aren't generally needed. The exception being the final lifting of the center pole and roof, IF the pavilion is large, the cover is heavy material, and the person putting it up isn't very strong. But borrowing strength for 1-2 minutes isn't usually a problem.

GENERAL PAVILION--DOCUMENTATION/RESOURCES

"PAVILINO"/SPOKED WHEEL TENTS--To all members of the list, I spoke to the owner of the "Past Tents" company this past weekend, and he said that he had not seen a period example. (Contrary to the rumour on this list) He did however tell me that his reason for deciding on a spoked design was based upon logical conjecture from a period source. He had seen a period picture in which one man was moving the pole and canvas, and right behind him for no readily apparent reason was a man pushing a cart wheel. Unfortunately like most of us he could not remember the location of the source, but his conjecture was that an army would have many wagons, and therefor many wheels and could cut trees for poles and thus would only have to carry the canvas. Those of you who have ever tried to carry your pavillions any distance will surely agree that pavillions will only be used in conjunction with wagons! If any of you know the picture referred to ,please let the list know as I for one would like to see it and reach my own conclusions.--contributed by Edward Boreham EBB827@bham.ac.uk

BELLS WITH AWNINGS--This last May I was in Germany and visiting the castle museum of Coburg on the Thurungian-Bavarian border. In the castle is a smallish room completely covered in inlayed wood with detailed scenes depicting an elaborate drive hunt. The scenes are laid out in chronological order in both close-up and landscape views. There are two tents depicted throughout the course of the hunt. One is a marquis that is set up at the base of the drive cone without canvas walls. In their place, "walls" of cut greenery are put after the canvas roof is up and staked down. It is used as a shooting blind. The other tent is a French bell with awnings. It is first shown being set-up in the same method that Tent/Smiths/Masters marquis are. (ie. With four long lines attached to the two pole tops sticking up through the canvas.) The second scene shows the tent in use as an officials tent with the awnings rolled up to show someone seated at a table and writing inside. The last scene shows the take-down and clean up after the hunt. The French bell is laid out flat ready for folding with someone carefully removing one of the finials. (This last bit caused me to double-take as it depicted the act exactly as I do it.) Unfortunately, the date on this inlayed wood room is 1632, a wee bit late for being within the canon. Still, its a fair bit closer than the ACW. I would have taken extensive photos of this if it were allowed. The best I could do was to sketch out the pertinent detail right after I left the museum. A photograph of the room however can be seen at: <http://www.fh-coburg.de/coburg/veste/text5_uk.html>--Ivar Hakonarson Crosston, West. Formerly of Adiantum atye@efn.org

I've done some research into period tents and their shapes and supports. Some books that might be of interest are "King Rene's Book of Love" by F. Unterkircher ISBN 0-8076-0989-7. This provides docs. for windows in walls and floors. The best book that I have found for tent descriptions is "Henry VIII and the Invasion of France" By C. Cruickshank ISBN 0-86299-768-2. As for square tents being in the manuscripts, I have documented 2 or 3, you are right that they are tough to find. One of the suggested ways that a circle tent without rope was supported is as follows. The center pole holds the tent and a "hoop" between the walls and roof holds it out, to give it the shape. The walls have to have a slope on them for this to work, they become in tension. The domed roofed tents would be easy to make, the onion dome would be harder. Yours in Service Geoffrey Maynard

Write or call Mediaeval Miscellania, 7006 Raleigh Road, Annandale, VA 22003 (703) 354-7711 and order their booklet "Period Pavilions". It has all the how-to information for pavilions, which is probably applicable to tents as well.

David Calafrancesco (dave.calafrancesco@drakkar.mhv.net) wrote: : lobel@is.nyu.edu wrote in a message to All: : : li> I need some helpfull advice from engineers, physicists, and : li> such technical folks. : : li> A bit ago I found some images of Kipchak tents (10th-12th : li> cent.). : : Neat.... but don't leave us hanging... where did you find them?!?!? name your : sources pretty please ;) Artamanov, "History of the Jewish Khazars" (I may be a bit off on the title. he wrote two books on the Khazars, this is the big fat one.) The book is in Russian - I don't know if there is a Russian translation. The picture is from a Russian manuscript.

Yaakov asks about Middle Eastern tents. For a detailed description of the "Black Tent" (bedouin) and its many relatives, see the book "Tents: The Architecture of the Nomads" by Torvald Faegre, mentioned by Stephen Bloch in his posting. It has only a little historical information but a lot on construction. It was the source for the miniature Berber tent of red wool that I used at Argent (our pavilion is a bit large for one person, and not easily air portable). According to Faegre, the berber tent should be made of goat's wool. I do not have a source, so I used ordinary, cloak weight wool, with additional lengthwise reinforcing strips of heavy cotton along the seams. I do not know if they are necessary. The standard tent of this sort has reinforcing strips crosswise but not lengthwise. For Middle-Eastern "pavilion" type tents, you might want to look at the miniatures in the Houghton Shahnamah reproduction available from the Metropolitan Museum in NY. Cariadoc

Tangwystyl mentions a mid-sixteenth century Italian book with drawings of fancy pavilions. Those interested in such things might want to look at the _Ain I Akbari_, which has pictures of fancy 16th c. Mogul pavilions. David/Cariadoc

The chronicles of Joinville, that of St Louis, I believe in Ch. 10 has a wondrous description of the Sultans encampment. It is very much worth the few minutes it take to read for those unfamiliar with the work. The camp is described as being surrounded in walls of blue fabric, the same material as the pavillions are made of as well. Towers are described as made of poles and again covered in blue so that from the outside of the camp all one sees is a jumble of blue shapes. The good sultan even had a pavillion in the Med itself for bathing and a covered walkway, you guessed it, in blue, leading down to it. In many ways this is what we do at Pennsic albeit with more varied and personnal designs.Aside from the obvious privacy obtained, our *anachronisms* are out of sight, everything *looks* more medieval and the atmosphere is enhanced. Walls. Gotta lov'em! Vale, Steiner

Madoc (NASH_JOHN/HPBRIT_C6@hpcpbla.bri.hp.com) wrote:

: We have been trying to find evidence of Welsh tents but : have so far drawn a blank. Believe me, we have had far more than : a cursory search. : It would appear that the Welsh teulu were semi-transient, : moving there cattle from lowland to highland depending on the : season, and we assume that they had proper housing in each location. : The King and his household would lead an almost nomadic : lifestyle, travelling from place to place. The duties of the : peasants included the building and maintenance of several halls : for the kings visits. : Even on campaign, the chances were that the brenin's warband : could rely on these halls up to a point.

: So, there you go. No tents in Wales during our period ( 900-1066) : Except the ones used by Viking traders I expect.

You can find literary _references_ to tents in medieval Wales. (Not in pre-1066 Wales, I'll admit -- but then you can't find primary literary evidence for much of _anything_ in pre-1066 Wales because the manuscripts just don't exist.)

The most convenient source for this is the entries in the "Geiriadur Prifysgol Cymru" for the words "pabell", "pall", and "lluest". The first is a borrowing of the same root as "pavillion", the second is also taken from Latin from "palla" (mantle, cloak) possibly suggesting the make-shift origin of some examples, while the last shows its origin in the most likely derivation from "llu" (army, host of men) + "gwest" (lodging, hospitality, shelter).

13th c. (a poem in the Book of Aneirin) - rac PEBYLL madawc "in front of Madog's tent"

14th c. (Brut y Tywysogion, a Welsh chronicle) - y kyuodes ... Maredud ac Ywein ... yn anssynhwyrus oc eu PEBYLL heb gyweiraw eu bydin "Maredudd and Owein arose insensibly(?) from their tents without readying their army"

c.1200 (the Chirk Codex of the Welsh laws) - ebrenyn adely opob myleyntref dyn amarch abuyall ygueneuthur LLUESTEU "the king is entitled to have from each villein-town a man with a horse and an axe to make tents/shelters"

13th c. (the History of Gruffudd ap Cynan) - LLUESTEU y dywededigyon vrenhined "tents/shelters of the aforementined kings"

14th c. (a poem from the Red Book of Hergest) - LLUEST gadwallawn arydon "tent/shelter of Cadwallon <unknown>"

c. 1300 (various poems form the Hedregadredd ms.) - y BEBYLL y byll y ball coch (to pavillions, to ??, to a red tent); Eil ywr llall or pall pell (second is the other from the far tent)

14th c. (the tale of Branwen) - Nyt ymywn ty ydoydynt namyn ymywn PALLEU (they were not within a house, but within tents); achyweiraw y PEBYLLAU ar PALLEU awnaethant udunt ar ureint kyweirdeb yneuad (and they prepared the pavillions and the tents for them in the manner of preparing the hall)

There are also the derived verbs "lluestu" (to lodge temporarily in the open or in tents, to camp, esp. of troops) and "pebyllio" (to pitch a tent, encamp).

1160 (a poem) - Pei byw llary lleissiawn / Ni LUESTAI wyned ym mherfed edeirniawn "While Llary Lleission lives, Gwynedd shall not camp in the middle of Edeirnion"

12th c. (poem) - Rhag pyrth Penfro yn PEBYLLIAW (tenting before the gates of Penfro)

13th c. (History of Gruffudd ap Cynan) - en e cantref hvnnv y LLUESTASSANT wythnos "in that cantref they camped for a week"; urth henne e LLUESTWS ac y PEBYLLYUS ... em Mur Castell "because of that, he camped and tented ... in Mur Castell"

13th c. (Llyfr Colan - one of the law tracts) - E brennyn a dyly o pob tayauctref ban el y lluyd gur a buyall y LLUESTU ydau. "The king is entitled to have from each villein-town, when he would go to battle, a man with an axe to make camp for him"

I have deliberately omitted examples that are either translated or largely derived from religious or other non-Welsh sources, on the assumption that the tents could have been in the original. So what does this tell us? Well, the medieval Welsh were familiar with tents and used them, largely in the context of war, but also on peaceable occasions when more room was needed. Tent poles were most likely cut on site (thus, the man with the axe) and the fabric in some cases bore enough resemblence to a cloak (either in form or function) to take its name from that item. Not a _great_ deal of help, but it's something.

OK, OK, I'll expand it into an article. Are you happy now?

Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn (who should have been at work over an hour ago, but this got really interesting!)

On Cariadoc's suggestion a year ago I looked up a wonderful book by Torvald Faegre entitled "Tents: the Architecture of the Nomads". It includes a chapter on Bedouin and related tents, a chapter on Turkish black-tents, a chapter on North American tipis, one on sub-Saharan felt and hide tents, one on yurts, and others I've forgotten. For each type of tent Faegre gives a variety of pictures, often with scale plans and elevations, discussion of materials and reasons they are so chosen, details of fastenings ... a real treasure-trove. In specific, I'm (still) planning to build a more-or-less Bedouin tent (actually closer to Moroccan Berber style, since it rains in Morocco, and besides Morocco's just across the Strait from my home). The construction is simplicity itself: a rectangle of fabric held up with poles at center and edges, guyed to stakes in all directions, with optional walls (of lighter fabric) hung from the edges of the roof by pins. Faegre describes a variety of styles, some of which have center poles over 3 m long. What I haven't managed yet is finding the right fabric....

I've done some research into period tents and their shapes and supports. Some books that might be of intrest are "King Rene's Book of Love" by F. Unterkircher ISBN 0-8076-0989-7. This provides docs. for windows in walls and floors. The best book that I have found for tent descriptions is "Henry VIII and the Invasion of France" By C. Cruickshank ISBN 0-86299-768-2. As for square tents being in the manuscripts, I have documented 2 or 3, you are right that they are tough to find. One of the suggested ways that a circle tent without rope was supported is as follows. The center pole holds the tent and a "hoop" between the walls and roof holds it out, to give it the shape. The walls have to have a slope on them for this to work, they become in tension. The domed roofed tents would be easy to make, the onion dome would be harder. Yours in Service Geoffrey Maynard

This information was gleaned from personal library. I don't have that much information on Military Tents prior to the 14th century or from areas outside central Europe, though I did see some examples which are noted. Noticeable absent in my library was an example of a simple single-peaked square tent.

The following styles were found in various single-leaf woodcuts, illuminations, and paintings of warfare in the Middle Ages and Renaissance. The most comprehensive selection was found in "Medieval Warfare", (MW) by HW Koch, 1995, Barnes and Noble Publishers and "Artists and Warfare in the Renaissance" (A&W) by J.R. Hale, 1990, Yale University Press. Unless otherwise indicated, examples of this tent style were found in the 14th, 15th, and 16th centuries in central Europe.

Most roofed styles were found with and without tension ropes. When there are ropes, each one staked to the ground comes out of the roof at 2 to 3 points usually looking like a "Y".

= Very common

Conical-Roofed Round Tents - These are the most common tents shown in all periods and have one center pole. The tension is either created via ropes going from the edge of the roof to the ground or via and internal or external stiff structure going around the edge of the roof. The sides are sometimes sewn to the roof, but sometimes they are clearly separate pieces, as shown in "An Army Breaking Camp", Giovanni Bettini, A&W, page 79.

with taught sloping sides * (also 13th cent. & seen in Ottoman Turks) with taught straight sides * - Commercially available with draped sloping sides (lots of gathered fabric) with draped straight sides (lots of gathered fabric) (also 13th cent.) (The tops for any of these can be purchased separately from some manufacturers.)

Conical non-roofed Tents - These tents also have one pole. They are kept taut from the tension of the sides staked to the ground. Some of these tents are short and wide and look like the roof of the one of the tents described above staked directly on the ground. Some are tall and narrow and have a similar profile to American Indian teepees, but they do not have the smoke hole/flaps common to that style of tent. It might be pretty cheap to get a commercial manufacturer of Teepees to modify one into this style.

Oval Tents - (Commercially available, but commercial ones require many side poles.)

Rectangular Tents -

Straight sided Wall tents - (Commercially available in the low roofed model, but requires many side poles. This style has a roof with two sloping sides and two flat sides. Sloping sided Wall tent *- This tent has two sides where the roof and the walls slope out and two sides which are flat. (13th Cent.) -Trapezoid *- This style has a very long ridge, but all sides slope out.

Other Marquee styles -

Rectangular center section with rounded ends * Rectangular center section 5 sided ends Rectangular center section 3 sided ends

A-Frame Tents -

A-Frame with short wall - (Commercially available) A-Frame to ground * - shown with walls straight from beam to ground and with an internal structure pushing the sides out about 2' from the ground. (Commercially available) French Officer's Bell - (shown in MW pg. 170 late 15th cent.) (Commercially available.) Baker Tent - (shown in A&W pg. 20, from "The encampment of Charles the IV at Ingolstadt" Hans Meilich, 1549) (Commercially available) Lean-to - Basically a tarp hung or draped over a stick.

Some Styles which would be really hard to engineer -

Onion Dome Roofed Round Dome Roofed Round Layer-cake Rectangular or Round - This style looks almost like two tents on top of each other from the side. The roof section is in 3 "layers". They would be complex to engineer.

Not Seen - Square tents with a single pointed peak (but are commercially available.)

Cloth sunshades are shown on boat decks in "Battle of Lepanto" 1571, MW, pg. 214/215 with lovely scalloped and upside-down minaret dags on the sloped sides. These sunshades have a center beam and two side beams which give an internal structure. There are also is one rounded one in this picture and some rounded ones which look to have an internal structure something like the top of a covered wagon in another woodcuts I have in my library.

None of my examples show any indication of using upright poles around the roof edge which is commonly seen in commercial "period" tent manufacturer and SCA designs. The most common tent shown is the round tent using one center pole. Most of the tent styles were depicted with both sloped sides and vertical sides. The slope ranged from almost vertical to an angle steeper than the roof slope. Because many parts of mainland Europe have pine trees available, it is possible that armies may not have carried all the poles needed for the whole camp with them. Other weather protection shown are many A Frame and lean-to structures made of pole or plank wood.

Subscriptions are available from the editor for $10 for four issues. Individual issues are available for $3 each except for The Coins of Calontir VolumeVII, Number 1. This issue is a double-issue and is available for $4.Make checks payable to: SCA - Calon Scrolls Send subscriptions to: Calon Scrolls Editor Debra A. Hense 4740 NW 51st St.Des Moines, IA 50310 Volume IV Number 6:Pavilions: History and Construction by Baroness Barbary Elspeth Ham and Countess Susannah Grif

Choose toggle buttons that will fit through your grommet holes or grommets that will fit your toggles. A button every 18" is adequate and a ground stake every 5' (i.e. at every seam) has worked well enough. Extra stake options near the door can simplify life. Placing a stake under each button in this region is a good idea. 1.Grommets. I would be most surprised to discover grommets in period tents. Instead I would expect to find a piece of leather sewn to the cloth and a hole cut through both leather and fabric. Another option I have tried is to stitch down a ring of light rope or heavy cord to the edge of the hole. 2.I suggest that only nomads and nobles who spent a lot of time either on campaigns or at tourneys had tents. Traveling merchants are a form of nomad. Pilgrims would not have had tents and would spent their nights at religious establishments of one sort or another, or at inns if their pilgrimage was merely an excuse to travel.

With a town every 15 to 20 miles along every road worth mentioning, and a village every 5 miles or so in the gaps, finding an inn should not have been a problem.

3. Assuming that one is on campaign, implies a retinue and a wagon for supplies. Nomads are more likely to pack everything on horses, mules or camels.

4. Equating recreational use of tents to attending tournaments, I would imagine that the insides were filled with more expensive equipment to try to impress visiting nobility.

5. Why assume that waterproofing was an issue? A little dampness can be lived with if any rain punches through the fabric. If the fabric saturates, the water will simply run down the roof and walls to the ground (where the appropriate drainage ditches will carry the water away). As long as the structure will support the weight of saturated fabric, waterproofing is an unnecessary expense.

Felt is a little different as saturated felt may not be able to support its own weight and so self destruct. My local expert asserts that milk is the only medium that will successfully waterproof felt.

Another choice is to assume that some tents were made of leather, in which case, again, waterproofing should be unnecessary. Oiling the leather might be necessary to extend the life of the leather and have the side effect of keeping the water out of the leather.

6. Why assume that nobles lived in tents in winter? Nomads did and nomads used blankets and quilts and had indoor fires. As far as I can tell, western Europeans did not hold campaigns or tournaments during the winter months.

Warmth would have been more of an issue for the lower classes who did not get the privilege of sleeping inside the tent. I know of little evidence for fur lined cloaks. One Irish leader issued his men with sheepskin cloaks, with the fur on the inside. However, this is remembered because it was highly unusual. The Irish brat, like the Scot's kilt, is a rectangle of fabric that will easily double as a blanket.

I would expect a noble to equip his Pavillion with a bed and bedding so that warmth was not an issue.

7. The earliest Pavillion picture that I know of is an illustration in Alphonso's compendium of games, created around 1270. It shows a pointy top Pavillion with lots of extra ropes. This does not match the modern Arabic tents in any way.

Using Asterix the Gaul as a secondary source for roman tent designs, we see squad tents and officer tents. The officer tent, being round and pointy topped, looks like the origin of the design of the arming Pavillion.

Thus, it is my feeling that Arabic tent designs did not enter western Europe and that, until very recently, all tents were variations of the Roman design. Note that the Viking ship shelter also did not get used by anyone else. 

GENERAL PAVILION--FURNISHINGS/INTERIOR

As for shelving in a pavilion: you might consider a set of straps which have wide loops sewn into them and a grommeted hole in the top. The grommet goes over your pavilion pole (which then goes through the tent grommet), and boards slide into the loops & brace against the poles. This arrangement has the advantage of folding down small for transport.

There is a table design which is very common in period art, easy to make, : and comes apart. It is a trestle table, with two trestles, each having : three legs. The legs are planks, wider at the bottom than at the top. Two : go one way , one the other. When I made one, I used a length of 2x4 for : the top piece of each trestle, drilled and chiseled three holes into the : bottom of the 2x4 (one in the middle angled a bit one way, two near the : ends angled the other), cut the legs (from 1x ..) with the two end legs as : right triangles with the tips cut off, the middle leg a symmetrical : trapezoid. The top was simply two planks sitting on the trestles, not : attached in any way. It worked fine with a tablecloth, which may have : helped to hold the whole thing together.: I hope this isn't too confusing. Eventually I'll write it up for the next : edition of the _Miscellany_ and put it on my web page.: Someone at an event had a rather simple three legged stool with back that : looked very portable, and he said (I believe correctly) was period.: David/Cariadoc

No I don't work for Tandy Leather, but they did come out with a new trileg stool kit. Comes with punched leather of engravable thickness and three collapsable legs.Not sure how "period" the design is but it is portable and anyone who can thread a needle can sew it. Of course the leather should at least be oiled to protect it , and the kit costs about $40.

Subject: Gothic Table Plans in the March 1988 Popular Woodworking In Sept. 1997 these people printed plans for the Glastonbury Chair. That magazine is still available for $4.50 by calling (513) 531-2690 extension 320, ask for issue #98. As I recall that same issue had a additional article on an Arts and Crafts table that also looked very medieval. I have seen similar in medieval blockprints. Two for one.The March 1998 issue (#101) of Popular Woodworking features a plan for a small Gothic table with a bookshelf underneath. 42"L x 20"W x 29 7/8"H, or roughly the height of a regular dining table. With the shelf underneath it wouldn't be really comfortable to sit with your legs under, but if the horizontal bookshelf were turned into a vertically oriented stretcher you would have 9 1/2" in front of your shins and it might make a nice little table for the list field, beside chairs, or for one to eat at. A nice tent size. The magazine is $4 & tax at the newstand or call and order.They are also interested to learn if their readers are interested in more medieval style projects. Popwood@earthlink.net, specify P9 in the March 1998 issue to let them know this. The editor is Steve Shanesy.

My lady and I use wooden floor sections in our pavillion, along with a four-poster bed and a Large armouir for her garb. We find that with a large (20x20) pavillion, if you don't have an actual flow of water running through your tent (which nothing will keep from coming up through your floor), the "floor" stays reasonably dry. We use the wooden sections as insurance and to give us someplace where we can get the grass off our feet and keep it off.I would advise against trying to waterproof the floor. It winds up trapping the water that gets in on top instead of letting it runoff through the earth.Gavin

We are lucky enough to live in a state with papermills. We use a section of paper felt for our flooring with a nylon drop cloth underneath. The paper felt is water resistant and fireretardant. It folds up nicely and is easy to clean. We also use painters tarps for the roof of our pavilions as it is already treated and beads water nicely (which works great in An Tir - the Kingdom of continuous moisture).Lord Ruadhan O'Duinn

My lady and I camp in the Enchanted grounds at Estrella every year and we have found straw (NOT HAY) beds are the most comfortable and decadently period style bed to sleep on, you're gonna love it!! OK here goes, Determine the size of your bed (single, full, etc...) Take this measurement and add 8" or more depending on how thick you want the final product to be. Imagine if you will, a sandwich style baggie (the kind before ziploc's, with the flap that folds over one end.........get it?(just remember dont include that one single layer that extends beyond the length of the bag.) That's what you're going for. I can explain (maybe?) more if you E-Mail me. Use a good grade unbleached muslin for this and wash it before you sew it. This will close up the gaps inbetween the weave and it looks REAL period. You could use cotton sheeting if you wish but the end result isn't as nice Remember, you will still need to put a bottom sheet over the matress as the straw does have a tendency to be a little dusty and this will keep it to a minimum. Some other actual period practices include: putting rosemary, or lavender, or other herbs in with the straw. It takes us about 2/3 of a whole bale of STRAW. A bale will run you anywhere from $5-10. You may even be able to set up for delivery of your straw to the site. When the event is over, throw away the straw and fold up you mattress material. Remember also , you'll have to beat down the straw once you get it stuffed into the bag (use a big stick or broomhandle) beat it down a little, test for comfort, add straw if needed, beat down again, repeat. Sounds like hard work but its not. We (at last Estrella) had a group of junior High kids come thru our encampment for a tour and demos and they thought the straw bed was so cool that they all took turns beating on it for us. Ha Ha slave child labour!!I hope this has enlightened you a little and I wish you luck. You will never sleep on anything else!!!You can reach me (Ld Gwyn) at GwynnyPOO@aol.com

Amanita asks about Pavilion fttings:For Safety :Get an Industrial fire extinguisher and keep it near the bed [covered with a cloth for the period conscious]. I used mine last October to help put out the fire in the tent next to mine. The tent owner was lucky, as he didn't have an extinguisher, but three tents nearby did! We saved the tent also <G>.A bucket of water is also handy for putting out smoldering spots.For comfort :A bed is a must in my household. I'm currently using a four-poster design slat bed. With a 5" futon on top it's very comfortable, and being 18" off the floor is a lot warmer [fewer cold convection currents]. This season we'll add mosquito netting, as my lady is a bug magnet!Some wooden chests are nice, mine are designed to double as benches or bedside tables [depending on how often we need to get into them]. Some of the chests have cedar slat sides, so we don't get as many bugs in our clothers <G>. I also have a heavy oak bench that is my lady's step stool.Fit a pulley on a loop, thread a 5/16 or 3/8 rope through it, to provide a lighting hanger. Remember to put the loop around the ridgepole before raising the pavilion top! Hangers that hook/spike onto the poles are also useful. We have an oversized pair that support a short closet pole so we can hang up our spare costumes - decadent <G>.Flea Markets are a good source of tapestries. Add an 8" strap every 18" along the top with a grommet on the end of each. We then use 's' hooks and hang them from the wall support rope, on the inside side of the walls. With the extension straps the tapestries hang just below the inner storm flap.If you have an aversion to shadow shows, an inner wall made of a dark material [sheet weight] prevents it. Hem it and grommet/hook it as any other wall section. 'I' didn't see the need [being male, I suppose] but did find that we get some additional heat retention in winter [fewer wind leaks] and I can sleep longer in the mornings without the sun waking me.With heavy rugs the plastic [brown] tarp I use has almost no 'crunch' sound. We use (2) 8.5x11.5 ft. rugs with several smaller to cover gaps, etc. and provide an entry mat. I usually put a small one down under the roof support, so I can pull the other rugs without taking down the top. If you camp on swampy ground a 'shoe' of a 1x10 with wood strips around the upright [roof support] will keep your center pole(s) from punching through your bottom tarp.Just a few items we've found useful!Benjamin the Traveler (Kingdom of the West, camping junkie)

And then there was the year Claus first came to Pennsic. He 'borrowed' (read stole) my period pavilion, since it was the first year I had my cabin, and he figured I didn't need my pavilion anymore. He fixed up the outside so it would look really authentic. He set up his workshop in another tent...again, striving to make everything look just right. It was all in all a very fine encampment. During the week, a group of dukes came by to judge a period pavilion competition. The loved the outside. The inside, however... He brought our bed from home...headboard, metal frame, boxspring and mattress. He brought a floor lamp, a carpet, an easy chair, a refrigerator, a microwave, a toasteroven, a comic book rack full of comics, and a lava lamp. Sigh. Of course, since then, he has repented, and mended his ways... Megan ==

About 10 years ago or so I remember a household from the Barony of Allyshia, (Humboldt Cty., CA) that showed up at an Egil's Tourney in An Tir, and at a Purgatorio in the West with an early-60s Lincoln, (or some other piece of big Detroit Iron), towing a trailer that had a large wooden hot tub on it. They would dismount the tub, fill it with water, and then disconnect the radiator on the Lincoln and run a pair of hoses from the engine and water pump to the hot tub. It would take about 3-4 hours of the engine at idle to bring the tub up to temperature. (The tub held about 16) I hope they were not using anti-freeze. For myself, I'll stick to the wood-fired baths at Clinton War. Ivar Hakonarson Adiantum, An Tir.

The 15th century bench in Diehl's Book Making Medieval Furniture can be made to knock down by making the joints slip together rather than lock and fitting a block under the top connect to each leg and drilling for a peg or bolt. Simon von der Eisenhandlung

Several years ago while helping my brother move back to Ohio from Boston we stopped to visit the reconstructed Plymouth Plantation. There I saw a simple bench made of a heavy plank with four legs set in from the bottom at a slight angle from each corner (splayed). I had a knock down bench which h I bought at Pennsic 5 years ago, but it had grown wobbly and cracked. I wanted to make a replacement that would be as light, compact, but extremely sturdy. So I modified the Plymouth Plantation design as follows. I bought two long 1 x 12 boards and four 1 x 2 boards of equal length, a 2 x 6, a number of 2 x 2s, a box of drywall screws, carpenter's wood glue (the waterproof kind for Pennsic), and dowel rod to cover the counter sunk screws. I screwed and glued the 1 x 2s to the bottom of the edges of the planks. I then cut short lengths of 2 x 6 to run across the ends of the planks between the 1 x 2s. These were also glued and screwed in place to form a very sturdy bench top. The 1 x 2s are attached 3/4" side to the 1 x 2 plank, and the 2 x 6s are attached wide side to the plank. Next I drilled 1 1/2" holes through the 2 x 6s and all the way through the bench tops. I started from the bottom angling in slightly from the corners. It is best to drill all the way through so that the legs can be knocked out from above after use since they are likely to swell do to humidity. I planed lengths of the 2 x 2s to an octagonal cross section as legs. I then filed the ends of each round to fit into the drilled holes. Two such benches once their legs have been removed can be nested together bottom to bottom to form a box. The legs can be stored inside and rope can be run through the leg holes to tie them together. They take up very little space for the number of people they will sit and can be assembled in a matter of seconds. Jim Koch (Gladius)

>Are there any period finishes to waterproof the wood somewhat? My lord and I are looking at making some camp furniture out of oak and would like to finish it in as period a manner as possible. Would oak >need a waterproof finish, or only softer woods such as pine? I would guess that one alternative might be beeswax well rubbed in, but it's only a guess.

I've used boiled linseed oil on my tent poles; and the three tables I use to display my wares at Pennsic are also, if I remember correctly, thoroughly coated with linseed oil. The tables have lasted through, umm, about 4 Pennsics, so far, and the tent poles through seven or eight, no problem, and none of the tables or poles have needed to be re-rubbed. Admittedly, they're also not out in the rain: close, but not actually out. Since (again, if I remember correctly) linseed oil is made from flax, and since flax was known in period, I believe linseed oil is also period. Two things to remember: you'll need at least two coats if you're going to use it on untreated wood. And you will notice a faint smell of linseed oil for a long time; my tables still have a faint whiff of it, several years after having it applied. (It's not a bad smell or anything; it's just a smell.)I've heard good things about beeswax-as-waterproofing, but haven't tried it myself. Wax has other uses, too - candles, flux for casting metal printing type, lubrication for a whole mess of things, coating (I think) for vegetable and fruit canning, sealing wine bottles . . .Be very, very careful, though: when you apply the oil to the wood, look out for splinters. One of the tent poles bit back, I wound up with a couple of inches of splinter in a finger, *poof* infection crept in, and I spent three days in the hospital, on IV antibiotics, thanks to an incredibly huge swelling on that finger. - and all this, despite the fact that I'd applied bandages and over-the-counter antibiotics to the wound.

Alban the elee have been using Danish oil finishes on our rope bed, trestle table, chairs and pavilion poles. The finish on the trestle table held up well at last PENNSIC. We've used the Danish oil on pine, poplar and alder. Especially liked the "English Oak" finish on our rope bed. Danish oil is another drying oil finish. Does anyone know the ingredients used? I believe Danish oil is based on linseed or tung oil, which had it's origin in a nut found in China (May not be period)

Your best bet for a period wood stain that is food safe and alcohol resistant is walnut oil. Theophilus (11C) uses it for oiling bone carvings. It is a traditional French wood finish. I am using walnut oil to finish a batch of Sutton Hoo style beakers. Wood finishes are a problem for reenactors- there is very little known from period.

The walnut oil finish will water proof wood to some extent (depending on how many coats you apply) walnut oil (which should be pure, without antioxidant additives or preservatives) is a "drying" oil. What this means is that it reacts (slowly) with the oxygen in air to form a polymerized film. Tung oil, and linseed oil are also drying oils, and may work faster. Oak in particular can be a problem, it is a porous wood (red oak is so bad that it will not hold water) To seal it well you have to fill these pores with finish, which takes for ever. As for bees wax, I use it when I am turning goblets or bowls on the lathe. But the method I use for applying it (using the friction caused by the lathe turning to melt the wax into the wood, smells great) will not work for furniture.

I got a surprise recently when a friend asked about making a copy of my "pickle bucket" bed. After making my tent, I was not up to making a proper bed, so I used a 4'x 6'4" piece of plywood. I trimmed off the corner points and bored 4 corner holes. The wood straps easily to the top of my station wagon. I put the bed up on 4 pickle buckets leftover from unfinished armor and tie the corners to tent stakes. My foam bed pad is a bit too thin, but heck, the thing was free. I did much messing with stacking foam blocks on top of the buckets to raise it enough to fit tall storage bins, but gave up on that.

I made a rope bed for myself and my significant other about a year ago, and it quickly replaced the regular bed that we were using. Description: Frame is made from 2x6s, 5 foot by 6 foot. 2x6 legs at each corner, each 5 foot high. Carridge bolts are used for attaching everything together. Rope is a 3/8 woven nylon. This is then covered with a cotton-batting filled futon. Ease of setup: 5 (about an hour on site for one person, from complete disassembly to strung. Our 16x24 foot pavilion takes two people 2 hours.)Comfort: 8 (futon really helps here)Weight: 6 (about as heavy as my armor box. YMMV.) Transport: 5 (we have a trailer, and we made canvas bags for everything to go into. One bag for frame, One bag for legs, One bag for Rope. One person can carry everything.) I wanted to make a poster-frame rope bed, that could hold as much weight as I could put on it (I know it has held more than a thousand pounds at once), so I over-engineered the frame. Replacing the legs with 2x4s 18" long would probably cut the weight by 1/3. All in all, it took about a day to build, (all of the cutting and drilling) using power tools, and some fancy finishing. I didn't find it to be a problem. As a side note, some friends built a slat bed the same day, so as to take advantage of all the tools conveniently laid out for them. Took about the same time to make the slat bed (with the exception that they made short legs for theirs. Didn't need the room to put 2 armor boxes underneath, I guess.) Another friend of ours built a single size rope bed with the sides cut in half and lap jointed, so that he could break the whole thing down into 10 boards, each 3 foot long. Worked well for him. Lightweight and convenient. Fine so long as you don't expect company. The Warnings: The rope bed WILL sag. Nothing you can do about it. After the first few time of using it, the sag will be minimized, and a tightening of once a week will suffice. If your only going to use it for a night or two, you probably won't even notice it. The rope bed WILL creak. Nylon rope seems to minimize this, and keeping the bolts tightened helps A LOT. Try to remember this BEFORE having company over. :) All that said and done, I refuse to give up my rope bed. I DO plan on making one out of oak and doing some fancy carving on it, but until then I won't go back to the old mattress bed. To anyone interested, If you e-mail me a fax #, I would be happy to send the plans I made for my rope bed. It really wasn't that difficult, and should be pretty self-evident on how it's made.

May I suggest the solution we used this year and last: a straw tick on top of a pair of wooden pallets? Before Pennsic last year we put together a bag, 2' x 4' x 6', of leftover tent fabric. Upon arriving on site we bought a bale of straw from the Coopers, ripped it apart, stuffed the bag with it, and sewed it shut. It was quite comfortable, and with the pallets underneath it stayed well off the ground so it didn't mildew. At the end of the War we dumped the pallets and straw in the place the Coopers had set aside for such things and rode home in our Ford Escort, still able to use the rear view mirror. Total cost $11. (Ford Escort not included :-)

GENERAL PAVILION--RAISED FLOORS

I am in search of suggestions and experiences others have had in the use of raised floors in their pavillion or other domicile. Currently I'm thinking of making a slightly raised section for one end of a double-bell wedge pavillion, to a height of about 2 inches. My thought is to make it vaguely pallet- like - 1x2's on edge, some boards below to prevent sinking into muck, more closely spaced board on top - then put rugs on that. Most of it would be joined with mortise and tenon or just pegging (top boards to the veritcal frame, for instance), so it could be taken apart and stored in < 6ft sections (the length of my truck bed). The first underlying question I have is - is it worth it? Between the transport space, the labor, and the setup time..Curious,-Bill

Don't forget the issues dealing with uneven ground. If your raised floor is flat, but the ground isn't, how will you solve that?--Lyle Gray

I merely place a couple of chunks of wood under the low end.Wilelm the smith, Serengetti, Too Damn Far Road, Howards Fen, The iron maker's trace, never had too much of a problem--though my wife refuses to let me put the tent over the edge of the slope---I think a tent with a basement would be nice...

Probably the same way I've seen it done countless times at scout camps, blocks to shim up the corners. -- Peter Hanely

Leveling plates and/or shims and hinges. By leveling plates I mean drilling a hole for a large diameter threaded bolt into both a supporting member and a separate block of wood, then inserting receiving nuts (like those "toothed" T-nuts) into the top of the detached plate, and the bottom of the supporting member, allowing the detached plate and a threaded rod to serve as both a stake and a levelling method. Hmm, that doesn't make much sense as written, let me attempt to ASCII draw..

[ ] = threaded receiving nut X = Threaded rod

_________________ A | [ ] | |______[X]________| __ X___ B |_ [X]__| X Now by turning the bottom piece (B) you can adjust the level of the platform. The extra threaded rod sinks into the ground and acts like a stake to keep the platform from moving.

Yes, that's extremely convoluted, excessively time-consuming and silly, but you asked...Someone else mentioned shims, and that would the way I'd lean (pun only sort of intended) for ease of use. By joining multiple small sections with leather "hinges", that would allow each section to be shimmed independently - the floor would be less than completely even, but it wouldn't act like a see-saw.-Bill Schongar (Making lots of notes..)

Why make it complicated? You said Roll it up. Why not take 2x2's , close to the length of your carpet and space them apart attached to Canvas or Leather Strips (I would suggest a Z pattern to maintain the square). I chose 2x2 because 1 or 2 boards may be supporting all your weight when bridging a soft or uneven area (mud <g>). Simply Unroll the bundle(s), cover with carpet.--Derek Dragonsclaw

My 8x12 Pennsic structure has a raised wood floor, three sheets of plywood, since I have a wooden frame already I use the joist hangers they make for decks to support 2x4 cross pieces. Everything covered by rugs.The first time I used this system was Mudsic, all of our stuff stayed dry and clean as Howard's Fen re-asserted its identity. I have continued to use a floor ever since. Being even a couple of inches above the ground seems to make a big difference in how much grass/straw/dust gets moved into the living area. (we use a built in raised bed as well).The plywood stacks flat in the bed of my pickup and the 2x4's are lined up next to the tent frame 3x4's so only about 1.5" to the stack.--Wilelm the smith

I made a raised floor for my pavillion for one event -- the West kingdom's week-long 25th birthday party. It was pretty much cobbled together from scavenged packing crates from work and was discarded at the end of the week on the campground's firewood pile, so certain issues of cost and transportation were avoided. It was very nice to have -- kept me and my stuff out of the mud for the week (although I've maintained that its primary purpose was to jinx the weather so that we _wouldn't_ get much mud). But I've never felt it worth the time and trouble to do for other events, even week-long ones. (Note: I'm not a regular Pennsic-goer.) I've played around with a lot of theoretical designs for raised floors that would balance the cost-benefit ratio, but so far haven't solved the problem of uneven ground.--Tangwystyl verch Morgant Glasvryn

I found Wal-mart (down 422 I think) at pennsic this past year had a whole mess of them out back for free. The worked well in my 9x12 cabin tent. We used about 4 of them to raise one half of the tent and that was where we put the futon. Carpeting was laid over the whole floor....--Bercilak Von Nuerenberg de Villarquemada

GENERAL PAVILION--FRAME/POLES

I have a wall tent that requires 3 2x4's for the ridge & sides, they are >14' & 15' long. I am paranoid about carrying these long & heavy pieces on the roof rack of my small station wagon. Would I be able to cut them & then use sheaths to join them without losing major stability? It makes me really crazy to drive with them on the roof. The tent is a 12' x 14' canvas thing. All the other poles fit inside.

For finishing poles, I would suggest a good paint (not a stain) and then linseed oil (boiled; unboiled never dries) and pumice rubbed in. Take a look at various paints on the market for historical homes: they try to match early American paint colors, which are probably going to be the nearest you can get to earlier period paints as well (if this is an incorrect assumption, I hope someone who knows will post additional information). It appears that paint was more commonly used than stains because the folks of the time were trying to hide, not accent, the cheap woods they often used. However, personally, I just assume that I'm gonna replace poles --gradually, not all at the same time--over the course of a few years. I use 2x2 pine furring strips for the most part, sanded to octagons, sanded and then covered with a blue paint. And I always have a couple extras around at an event: in case a pole goes bad or in case I need a length of wood for another purpose (like to replace the forgotten crossbeam of a table at last Pennsic...) Yrs, Folo

I now have a period tent. My problem: There is no possible way I can transport 15 foot poles, and the pole "instructions" that came with the tent says nothing about how to 'section' them. So, I ask anyone who has dealt with this problem: How'd you go about dealing with turning long poles into shorter, easier to carry poles without much loss of strength...? Thanks, - Iain Odlin, odlin@reed.edu -------------------------There are two possible ways to section your tent poles. The first is a method used by Tommy Langenfeld, who attached a hinge to the one side and a locking mechanism to the other, so that the poles fold double (effectively making, in your case, a 7.5 foot pole). Tommy's poles were no more than six feet in length, so this form of sectioning might not be stable for your poles. The other way is to creative a metal sleeve which will connect the sections. Bolts through the sleeve and the pole itself will strengthen this connection, although the hole in the pole itself might weaken the pole. Whichever version you attempt, I would advise you to set up the tent in your back yard (or some other convenient spot) under good conditions before taking it into the field. 15-foot poles seem awfully long, and unless they are very thick, I can foresee difficulties. If at all possible, keep the tent up under a variety of weather conditions (when I replaced the center poles on my marquee, I left it up in the backyard for about three weeks, through storms and everything; it convinced me to obtain 18-inch stakes among other things). Setting up the tent under "friendly" conditions will also be a lot less nerve-racking than trying to do it at an actual event. (there is a third alternative, but it is expensive and time-consuming: purchase the poles when you arrive at the site and modify them on site. Transporting the poles a few miles is a lot different from transporting them a few hundred) Depending on your vehicle, you might also look into a roof rack that would carry the full-sized poles or a trailer. I remember the first time I ever saw the poles for a tipi being transported: the owner of the lodge had a boat trailer which he had modified. The poles went up at a roughly 45-degree angle, up over the truck (or van, I forget) and were securely lashed to the trailer itself. It was, at once, impressive, admirable and frightening. Yrs, Folo

Iain Odlin asks about how to make a take-down tent pole, and Folo replies (in part): "The other way is to creative a metal sleeve which will connect the sections. Bolts through the sleeve and the pole itself will strengthen this connection, although the hole in the pole itself might weaken the pole." In my experience, the bolts are unnecessary. I use a metal sleeve about ten inches long, and file down the last five inches of each of the two sections of tent pole (1 3/4" x 1 3/4" maple) to fit. The problem isn't getting them to stay together, it is pulling them apart when Pennsic is over. Using beeswax when putting them together may make it a little easier. The other problem is that filing them down does not result in cylinders that are perfectly concentric with the rest of the pole, so there is typically a slight bend at the join. The longer the sleeve, the less serious that problem should be--but the harder it is to put the sections together and pull them apart. I suppose if I had a lathe long enough to handle the sections of tent pole, I could get an almost perfectly concentric cylindrical end--but it would take a pretty big lathe. Next question--how did they do it in period? Pictures of Persian pavilions frequently show a band at the middle of the pole which might be a metal sleeve--but I do not know whether there is any solider evidence than that. David/Cariadoc

More specifically, the poles to support a fifteen foot (canvas) tent should be larger than standard closet poles (1 5/16) - don't buy those! The largest size at our local mill is 1 5/8, which seems to work well, and fits the sleeve well. The sleeve should be six times the diameter of the poles (about a foot long) and can be made from 1 1/2 inch metal conduit - light, strong and easy to cut. Your local Home Depot will gladly sell you ten feet of it for under $10. (if you were local, I'd sell you the rest of mine... *wink*) Phaedria

Instead of going "larger", go for "tougher". Although it is harder to find, you can buy a number of different types of wood in pole form. Hard wood is more expensive, and it also weighs more. The only place that has a good selection (that I know of) in the Southern SF bay area is Southern Lumber in San Jose. It runs about $3 a foot. Seaan McAy Caer Darth; Darkwood; Mists; West (Santa Cruz, CA)

look up your local metal-worker(s) and find one who can make metal "collars" that have retaining pins to secure the pieces together through the "non fixed" side of the collar ... will allow you to section the poles and still retain a reasonable level of strength. another hint for transport ... get a segment of PVC drain pipe long enough to put your poles in with about 6-8" excess space inside ... at one end use a cap, at the other a screw in "clean out" cap. if you want to get fancier, add "d rings" to the body of the tube to help secure on the roof-rack. same construction also works for pole based things you don't want rattling around - like real spears (with blades scabbarded in oiled leather'wolf

I went to my local sawmill, bought a 6 foot by 6 inch board of 8 quarters ash and had them rip it into three 2 inch sections. I then went to a hardware store and bought 18" of 1.75inch black pipe. I cut the pipe in half and took a rasp to the pole sections until they fit solidly on the ends of two of the sections. I kept on using the rasp until the mating ends were a loose fit. This gave me a three piece 18' pole. The first time I used it, it rained and the rain swelled the wood in the top joint. It was months before I was able to separate those sections. I then took off more wood to restore the original fit and then treated the end of the section with one of the 'Danish Oil Finishes'. The pole has given no further problems in eight years of use. The ends of the sections are square, rather than cut at 45 degrees. The pole has a noticeable bow while in use but the pole does not flex in response to the wind. The pole has a pulley set into the top so that the roof can be hauled up rather than pushed up. A simple pulley is not adequate for this job. Another pulley is fitted to the top of the roof so the rope is tied to the tip of the pole, runs through the pulley on the roof, back up to the pulley in the pole and then down to the person hauling on the rope. My pole is probably heavier than necessary, but I am content because it has not failed me and is not showing signs of wear or age. Fiacha

I don't know about period, but my Victorian era bell tent uses essentially the same trick, except the the ends of the pole are cut at about a 45 degree angle so the lock into each other. The sleeve is screwed to the end of one half, and there's no cutting in-- the sleeve isn't flush with the wood. It seems fairly solid (they've survived being decommissioned from army use, transfer to boy scouts, and at least a half-century of use on the windy interior plains of the known world

Really, the side poles of a pavilion only need to be about 5" high. This has advantages other than transportability, the lower the side poles, the less of a "sail" you have and the less likely wind is to get UNDER the sides of the tent and turn the roof of the tent into an airfoil. (This is a common problem with dining flies in windy areas, like the serengeti at Pennsic.) Another advantage is that it makes it easier to adjust/futz with the guy lines and side poles of the tent. Cariadoc has a very nice pavilion which has a frame that can broken down into duffel bags. It stands about 5' high at the side (or a bit less). Of course, his Grace is not greatly discomfited by having to stoop to go through low doorways...:) :). Lothar \|/

The perimeter poles generally do not bear a significant load, furthermore there are 16 of them so the load will be fairly well distributed. I have seen many a Pavillion built using 1.25" to 1.5" square perimeter poles. The center pole on the other hand can be subject to a great deal of stress. The weight of the (dry) fabric is not a significant factor. But if the fabric gets soaked that can add several hundred pounds of water. Furthermore if you are in moderate (or higher) winds, the upper portion of your pavilion will tend to resemble a sail. The resultant stress due to wind loading can greatly exceed even the weight of water soaked canvas. If the canvas is both water soaked, and subject to wind loading, I would not be surprised if the total load was 2,000 lb (or more). This is a significant weight, some of which is going to be supported by the canvas and the guy-ropes, but the remainder will be supported by the center pole.

None of my examples show any indication of using upright poles around the roof edge which is commonly seen in commercial "period" tent manufacturer and SCA designs. The most common tent shown is the round tent using one center pole. Most of the tent styles were depicted with both sloped sides and vertical sides. The slope ranged from almost vertical to an angle steeper than the roof slope. Because many parts of mainland Europe have pine trees available, it is possible that armies may not have carried all the poles needed for the whole camp with them. Other weather protection shown are many A Frame and lean-to structures made of pole or plank wood.

I have a wall tent that requires 3 2x4's for the ridge & sides, they are >14' & 15' long. I am paranoid about carrying these long & heavy pieces on >the roof rack of my small station wagon. Would I be able to cut them & >then use sheaths to join them without losing major stability? It makes me >really crazy to drive with them on the roof. The tent is a 12' x 14' >canvas thing. All the other poles fit inside. >Caitlyn fitz Robert Tentmaster cuts their long ridge at a 45 angle and uses a piece of sheet metal about 16 inches wide foulded in a U as the splice plate. This metal is attached with wood screws to one piece of the ridge and supplied with a 1/4 bolt and wing nut to ttach to the other. A short 45 cut block is provided for transit to prevent the metal from being damaged (an you from cuts) while in transit. The LONG point of the Loose piece should be against the bottom of the U when assembled to provide a Jambing effect under Compression loads (poles).

You should be able to find a reference to Euler's Column Formula in a good mechanical engineering text book. This formula gives the Critical Force (stress required to result in failure).

The formula for poles with one end held rigidly is:

pi^2 * E * I Critical Force = -------------- 4 * L^2

If both ends are allowed to flex, the formula is:

pi^2 * E * I

Critical Force = ---------------- L^2

Where: pi = 3.14159. E is the modulus of elasticity of the material. I is the moment of area. L is the length.

The moment of area for a circular cross section of diameter d is:

pi * d^4 I = ----------- 64

The moment of area for a square cross section of side h is:

pi * h^4 I = ----------- 12

Where are Youngs modulli for selected woods:

Pine 1.28 x 10^6 psi White Ash 1.68 x 10^6 psi Birch 2.07 x 10^6 psi Pecan Hickory 1.78 x 10^6 psi True Hickory 2.18 x 10^6 psi Black Locust 2.05 x 10^6 psi Red Oak 1.81 x 10^6 psi White Oak 1.62 x 10^6 psi

As you can see, Oak is significantly better than pine, but there are other woods which you could consider.

Off the top of my head, I would personally be rather leery of any center pole less than 3" in cross section (but you can run the numbers for yourself to see what the critical force is for various diameters). Another critical factor is to make sure that the wood is sound, loose knots or cracks in the wood will significantly reduce the load carrying ability of the center pole.

The other way is to creative a metal sleeve which will connect the sections. Bolts through the sleeve and the pole itself will strengthen this connection, although the hole in the pole itself might weaken the pole." In my experience, the bolts are unnecessary. I use a metal sleeve about ten inches long, and file down the last five inches of each of the two sections of tent pole (1 3/4" x 1 3/4" maple) to fit. The problem isn't getting them to stay together, it is pulling them apart when Pennsic is over. Using beeswax when putting them together may make it a little easier. More specifically, the poles to support a fifteen foot (canvas) tent should be larger than standard closet poles (1 5/16) - don't buy those! The largest size at our local mill is 1 5/8, which seems to work well, and fits the sleeve well.

The sleeve should be six times the diameter of the poles (about a foot long) and can be made from 1 1/2 inch metal conduit - light, strong and easy to cut. Your local Home Depot will gladly sell you ten feet of it for under $10. another hint for transport ... get a segment of PVC drain pipe long enough to put your poles in with about 6-8" excess space inside ... at one end use a cap, at the other a screw in "clean out" cap. If you want to get fancier, add "d rings" to the body of the tube to help secure on the roof-rack. Same construction also works for pole based things you don't want rattling around - like real spears (with blades scabbarded in oiled leather went to my local sawmill, bought a 6 foot by 6 inch board of 8 quarters ash and had them rip it into three 2 inch sections. I then went to a hardware store and bought 18" of 1.75inch black pipe. I cut the pipe in half and took a rasp to the pole sections until they fit solidly on the ends of two of the sections. I kept on using the rasp until the mating ends were a loose fit. This gave me a three piece 18' pole. The first time I used it, it rained and the rain swelled the wood in the top joint. It was months before I was able to separate those sections. I then took off more wood to restore the original fit and then treated the end of the section with one of the 'Danish Oil Finishes'. The pole has given no further problems in eight years of use. The ends of the sections are square, rather than cut at 45 degrees. The pole has a noticeable bow while in use but the pole does not flex in response to the wind. The pole has a pulley set into the top so that the roof can be hauled up rather than pushed up. A simple pulley is not adequate for this job. Another pulley is fitted to the top of the roof so the rope is tied to the tip of the pole, runs through the pulley on the roof, back up to the pulley in the pole and then down to the person hauling on the rope. er).

Tentmaster cuts their long ridge at a 45 angle and uses a piece of sheet metal about 16 inches wide folded in a U as the splice plate. This metal is attached with wood screws to one piece of the ridge and supplied with a 1/4 bolt and wing nut to attach to the other. A short 45 cut block is provided for transit to prevent the metal from being damaged (an you from cuts) while in transit. The LONG point of the Loose piece should be against the bottom of the U when assembled to provide a Jambing effect under compression loads

Greetings Keradwc, Questions first. Where do you figure 100# for a 13' round? Is this with walls? The top should weight in around 30-40 lbs, and about the same for the walls. Have you looked at 2"x2"x8' furring strips? These will usually come in 3 grades and they are of pine. I use the best grade and select the ones I can use. The criteria are straightness, no knots, no cracks. The poles are then cut to length and painted. I paint the poles because one) sometimes the ground where we are setup at is damp or two) is rains on our way to or from an event. The paint keeps the wood from getting sodden and rotting and the poles can be wiped off from mud. The best paint is a latex enamel. The pavilions we had set up at Steppes Warlord this year didn't break a pole. The event had a gust front come through with 60mph winds. The List field pavilion uses pvc poles and the dining pavilion at camp had pine poles. As for the length, 6.5' is a good height. I guess I don't understand how this pulley system works. Since the pole >and pulley have to project through the tent, doesn't this leave a large >hole near the peak even after the tent is pitched? If you use a simple >grommet and pin arrangement, then there is only a small hole and that >is completely on top of the end of the pole. I can see how the pulley >can start off above the tent, so it doesn't have to fit through a hole, >but doesn't the tent pole have to pass through the tent?

The pulley is a small one inset into a hole in the center pole, near the top, so you only need a hole in the tent that the pole can go through--and besides, as I think you are suggesting, you can pass the butt end of the tentpole through the roof from above. If you look at period pictures, it seems clear that the tentpole projected through the top of the tent, sometimes with pennons etc. flying from it. I have a sort of inverted leather funnel that fits around the tent pole near the top, to keep water from getting through the hole--which is probably only five or six inches in diameter. If you know someone with a copy of the Miscellany that my wife and I self-publish, it has an article. I would change lots of things if I were rewriting it, but I think it does explain the pulley system. David/Cariadoc

GENERAL PAVILION---WATERPROOFING

On my current tent, I used 100 percent cotton twill (trigger-weight, but no polyester & no treatment) and industrial-weight thread. I roll-hemmed the edges to double-seal the seams. I had heard that 100% cotton will expand when wet and contract when dry - allowing circulation in the heat, and protection in the rain, so I tried it. (B.T.W. I was laughed at and ridiculed by many for not water-proofing it.)

At last year's Lilies War (the War of the Cold Rains), I found that I had to cover the beds with a light wool blanket, because it would "mist" for the first few minutes. The wool blanket caught the mist in its upper layer, keeping my cotton covers underneath completely dry. After that initial mist, my tent was waterproof, and we were dry and cozy. No leaks at the seams, no more misting. (My ridiculers were overcome with hypothermia, and many had to go home early. She who laughs last...)

As for the heat - it's hard to say. My previous tent was water/mildew/wind-proof - this one was definitely cooler! But I also have an air-gap at the top of my walls, so I'm not sure I can attribute it completely to the fabric.

I did learn two negative lessons: 1. Wash the cotton fabric TWICE in hot water before cutting/sewing - my 10-ft poles are now 9-ft, and my ridgepole is very snug. 2. And do not let it lay wet - I have mildew spots (sigh...)

--Lady Wyllow of the Loch-----------------------

Ooph! I tried to use Thompson's and it did not work very well, one that is somewhat better (though still $12 per gallon) is something called CanVac that your local tent/awning maker will have in stock, it smells better and works much better on the canvas.

While I have never header of a controlled experiment using Thompson's Water Seal, I performed a before-and-after experiment with my own tent. With heavy rain (simulated using a garden hose), I got the fine mist inside the tent that you mentioned (which, although it may not _damage_ the tent contents, is still noticeable when you climb into the bedclothes. After applying the Water Seal (using a four inch paint brush and much patience), I repeated the heavy rain application, and got no mist inside the tent. As for breathability, the design of the tent has vents new the peak (modified Viking ship shelter).

On the basis of a large quantity of woolen cloth found on the Gokstad ship (10th Century Viking Ship burial) which was either sails or tent covering or possibly doubled up in function as both, I tried making a Viking tent with woolen cover. It works wonderfully whilst up, no water at all gets through to the inside, you can touch the fabric and after a night of force 7 gales and torrential rain, it felt only slightly damp. The water seems to wick down to ground level within the cloth. I poured gallons of proofing solution over part of the tent and left the rest untreated when I ran out, the treated section behaves exactly the same as the rest, what a waste of proofing solution.

I hate to burst your bubble but all the household tents Master Sean and I have treated have been treated in Thompson's Waterseal. I must admit that I have never tried it on a cloak. It does seem to stiffen the tents somewhat but so does CAMVAC. (Note: CanVac is what Panther Primitives uses on their tents.) Sean and I prefer Thompson's because of availability. I do not recumbent either solution for synthetic tents (nylon etc.). Even at this year's TMT both Viking tents and the marquee tent stayed dry. Robert's round tent did not stay dry because it had been treated with bleach to remove mildew and then not re-treated with Thompson's. Margarete's tents are nylon and Thompson's does not work well on synthetics. I apply Thompson's (and CanVac if I'm using that) with a bug sprayer. I actually got the idea from the Chirurgeons. I went out and bought one of those big bug sprayers that you have to pump up. Fill it with Thompson's and put up the tent. Spray on the Thompson's until the fabric is saturated and the liquid starts to spread away from the sprayer (flowing downhill). This seems to be the correct amount to really seal the tent. The Thompson's actually soaks into the fabric and causes it to swell. I pay particular attention to the seams . Leave the tent up until it is dry. Repeat every year or so. This process seems to work so well that my tents seem to become the wet weather refuge for those whose tents have flooded out. 

GENERAL PAVILION--BAD WEATHER

Wilelm the smith, who last Pennsic spent the time during major storms in a 8'x12' raised floor, post & beam, mortoise & tennon framed tent, lounging on the built in double bed and wondering what all the fuss was about----Better Living Through Decadence! In service, Corun (who was wondering the same thing while lounging on the futon in his yurt)

HOW TO KEEP YOUR TENT DRY Link to article

--There are two articles, IIRC, by Countess Susannah Griffon about making tents which are similar to the instructions listed in the _Calon Scrolls_ Pavillion issue (which is what I *did* use for my tent). One is for a "stretched-octagon" tent; the other, I don't recall...My spouse and I built an oval tent with two center poles c. 6 ft. apart, a ridge pole, and guy ropes with crows' feet running the perimeter of the tent at the shoulder (instead of a solid spreader hoop, we used a 1/2" rope spliced together). We had built a circular tent along those lines a few years earlier, but outgrew it and had to upgrade. As for the storm: at the very beginning, before the rains hit, the tent "respirated" a bit in the wind, but after we tightened the guyropes and closed things up, it was just fine. We had a bit of leaking along the shoulder seam, which we have since taken measures to correct, but the tent stayed up just fine. The poles never even moved. After the storm, some of the people who had razzed us for having all those guyropes were singing a slightly different tune.

--A properly staked A-frame tent, with all its structural members in place (That's important- many people leave out things like the bottom end boards) can, and will, withstand gale force 8 winds. (I know- I once watched a 30x15 "footprint" model do so.) Then again, so will a _properly_ guy-roped and staked pavilion. The problem is simply that most of us don't put them up properly; we especially tend to skimp on the wall stakes. The latter problem is made worse by the shower-curtain-hook sides too frequently seen on our SCAbomination "pavilions" -- Once those weak little hooks let go the strongest pegs in the world won't save you. My pavilion top has doubled- canvas ties to hold the sides on. My one regret is not special-ordering it with the ties 1 foot apart instead of the standard 3. However, if you frequently experience gale force 6 or higher winds, you really should consider either complete-circumference side poles _with matching ties on the wall fabric_ - or bowing to the high-wind champions and switching to a Yurt. They get winds on those steppes that would scare a tornado. If you already have a dome tent, you can reduce the inversions somewhat by sewing extra guy loops to the outside of the rain fly, 2/3 of the way up each rib, and then staking the resultant extra ropes far enough out so they don't touch the fabric. Of course, this massively increases your "footprint". Oh, well... Above gale force six, nothing will save most sunshades/awnings/ dining flies. Even if the pegs hold, the fabric doesn't. Good tip: drop the fly, pull the pegs, add the ropes and pegs to your pavilion on the side the storm is coming in from- but keep those pegs at least 3 feet from the old set. Just those 4 extra ropes can make a critical difference. And of course, you knew that you _never_ tie one tent's ropes to another tent's ropes, poles, or pegs... didn't you? For sand, use corkscrew dog-chain anchors. For deep sand, use goat- chain anchors. For either, double all ropes (staked separately, of course) and _never_ face a door to the wind. ...Can you tell I used to own a US Army hospital tent? Yours in service to the Society- (Friend) Honour Horne-Jaruk R.S.F.

If the roof line is steep (This was 6 feet of rise over a 4.5 foot run, for instance) then the wind does not really bother it if the ropes are tight. I have been through storms in it that crushed modern tents. On the other hand, with all that sail area, if more than 3 ropes in a section go, so does the tent. Natural fiber ropes don't tend to slip, so I dog things down if it looks like a blow. A way around the occasional failure, if the pitch is at least 1 foot rise over 1 foot run, is to use extra guy lines to the center pole. The lines end up going a long way out, sometimes, but can be "bent" at the eaves point. This set of storm rigging is very popular among the Midwestern Pavilion makers. I have seen this style used by a Laurel from Kansas and from a pro, Tent Master, from Michigan. (Folks swear the Tent Masters will survive any thing up to a twister - yea, right :*))

> Hindsight, being the best way of predicting anything of course, says that > there was an announcement in court on Saturday evening about the imminent arrival of a cold front. This brought high winds (I think 75 mph gusts were mentioned) and some rain > although that was minor in comparison to the wind. Having chosen prime battle-front property for our encampment, we discovered that the large expanse of open field just gave the wind a clear access to the camp! I didn't hear of any major problems, and the Ramadas were set up as temporary sleeping areas for those people who had lost thier accomodations. By all accounts that I got that Saturday evening, and again Sunday morning it seems that about a third of the tents went down temporarily or permanently. It was a BIG wind. I am happy to say that even though the sturdy mundane tents took a beating, the two "Tentmaster's" period pavillions in the barony's encampment ignored the wind completely! Those pavillions took in the orphaned that night. It was kind of fun anyway, lots of off-the-cuff bardics were spawned by the storm 8*) 

GENERAL PAVILION---PAINTING /DECORATION

My Lord, I would congratulate you on your acquisition of the bell tent. In regards of how to color it I would have to say that it depends primarily on what the fabric is. If it is a synthetic such as nylon, I do not have enough experience with which to give competent advice. If it is a natural vegetable fiber such as cotton or linen the most common method I have seen used successfully after construction is the use of fabric paint. There is a wide variety of these available. Most of them are water-based; can be mixed and blended; and are heat-set after drying. This being said, it should be noted that they are not all alike. Some fabric paints tend to more 'plastic' than others and behave like the iron-on decals on printed tee-shirts. Besides being grotty to the touch they also have the disadvantage of peeling and being abraded through normal use. Other types can be worked into the fibbers of the fabric and are much more durable. Two other considerations are how light-fast the paint is and how water-proof it really is (or how thorough the heat setting is - One of the most heart-rending sights I have seen was at an Egil's Tourney some years ago. The autocrats had just completed a large Norse-styled long tent (not an A-frame) and painted a large Norse knot-work beast across the entire roof. Unfortunately, it hadn't been completely set. During the traditional Egil's rainstorm it all washed away leaving a pinkish ring at the hem.) Another consideration is breathability. Most, if not all of these fabric paints, are a liquid plastic. When applied to a tent they create a pretty effective water and air seal. Now some people may think that this is an advantage. I would argue however, that a tent that does not breath becomes a condensation chamber on the inside when it is cool and an oven when it is hot. If the tent is made of proper tent canvas it has no need for additional water-proofing. I bring this up as it sounds like you want to color the entirety of each panel. If you use fabric paint this will entail a lot of work that might not give the results you want. Besides the afore-mentioned breathing problems, getting even coverage over a broad surface will be difficult. Painting a tent generally is most successful when thought of in terms of detailing and decoration rather than as in painting a house. With the exception of the ermine and vair portions of the tent, it would probably have been more effective to have had the tent made using different colors of fabric. That being said, one method that you might experiment with is the use of exterior latex house paint and a roller. Although not a method I have used, I have seen several successful examples of this type of paint used on tents. or the vair and ermine portions of your tent, probably the best way is through the use of tailors chalk, stencils, stenciling brushes, masking tape and a little bit of time every day over several weeks. With my French Bell Pavilion, I painted the seams between panels using masking tape and gothic tracery arches across the top and bottoms of each panel. (Celebrating the structure as they used to say in architecture school). The tailors chalk is for laying out masking and stencil guidelines. For stencils I use drafting mylar. It is easy to draw on, cut with an x-acto type knife, and is washable. Fine detail is possible with a bit of practice. A variety of stenciling brushes is also important. On thing with using the stenciling brushes - try to almost scrub the paint into fabric. A thought just occurred: If a pavilion were done entirely in ermine, allusions to either the Duke of Brittany or House Guildemar would probably arise. A tent painted entirely in vair however would definitely be a sight. Back to subject. For heat setting the paint, you have two choices. One is a hot iron. This is best for detail work like ermine spots or seme's of anything. Using it on large areas usually leads to missing a spot. This then becomes apparent during the first rainstorm. For large area coverage, I would use a large commercial dryer. Most large commercial dryers are designed to take three loads of laundry at once. Here in the States that is 15 lbs. a load. (But we tend to have larger washing machines than the rest of the mechanized world) Therefore the dryers can handle about 45 lbs. For my pavilion (weight 42 lbs.) I put it in a LCD at the local laundromat for an hour at high temp. and the paint job has lasted for five years to date. The fabric paint I use is Versatex textile paint made by Siphon Art in San Rafael, California. I don't know if it is available in the antipodes but you might inquire through someone in The Mists. Whatever method you choose to explore, ALWAYS experiment first and practice a couple of times before setting brush to tent. Think of it as a scribe or illuminator preparing to work on a scroll. I daresay, your finished product will be seen by more people and for a longer time. If you are going to be at 3YC I would be most happy to show you examples and talk about pavilions in general. Good Luck Ivar Hakonarson atye@efn.org

As to the paint, I cannot help, but I did just waterproof a Viking Pavilion with 400 sq ft of canvas using a product called Surfcoat (or Cerfcoat? can't remember) which I procured through a local Camping Supply Store. It cost $20.00/gallon and covers ~100 sq/ft per gallon. Be sure to paint your tent first before waterproofing! Wolfgang von Hesse

The forgoing sounds a bit complex. I just used slightly diluted latex acrylic paint from the hardware store to paint my tent. No need to heat set it, it's waterproof as soon as it's dry, and it's flexible as long as you don't absolutely plaster it on. It's also cheap to buy in quantity, since you can buy it by the pint or gallon rather than having to pay for little tubes or bottles of the stuff.

I've just finished my new tent, and I painted stripes on it using fabric paint of the kind that screen-dyers use, diluted slightly with the right pigment stuff that they also use. If you look in the phonebook for screen-printing supplies you should find the equivalent company near you. When you've painted it and dried the painted areas, go to a commercial drycleaner with a gas-fired dryer, and get the paint heatset there. Much easier than whipping out that iron... And you _do_ need to heatset it, if you don't want to wear the paint after the first lot of rain your tent encounters. Actually, find a drycleaner first - you may not want to paint the tent before you know you can set it. The drying process shrinks the canvas a bit, so do bear that in mind. At the end of the process it looks really spiffy. However (there always is one...)

Canvas is naturally waterproof, and I say that with confidence, having tested my old, undecorated tent in Auckland autumn weather for several days on end. The paint goes into the fibbers of the canvas, and the heatsetting process seals it there. This makes the painted areas of canvas less waterproof, since they are now saturated with paint and sealed up. I say this with confidence too.... :( If you paint your tent, and expect to use it in rain, you'll probably have to waterproof it chemically, which will add significantly to the cost.

Panther Primitives says, and I quote "Many of you will want to paint designs on your shelter. For this purpose we recommend a latex housepaint. We've found this much easier to use than an oil base paint. You may also want to consider cutting the paint with about 30% water to increase the longevity of the design"

After a number of years doing small projects and getting paint on my clothes doing it, I learned that standard craft paint works just fine for painting on cloth. Later, I learned that standard craft paint is, essentially, acrylic latex paint. This sort of paint cleans up and thins with water until it dries. Then it is pretty-well waterproof. So, when I painted my tent last year, I bought a couple of gallons of matte acrylic latex interior paint in the colors I wanted. You can get bright colors in quart containers, but you have to scrounge in order to find bright colors in gallon containers. (I got mine as a special mix). I found that it took about three coats to get good coverage over the red fabric I was using for my tent. Something that is lighter (like beige canvas) might take fewer coats of paint. You can cheat by using a cheap matte white latex paint as a "primer" and then putting your more expensive bright colors over that. I used a standard 2" house painters brush to do the thick lines on my Pavillion and then touched up the edges of the lines by outlining them in black using a 1/2" artists stiff-bristled brush for use with oils or acrylics. The project was still messy and time consuming. If you decide to paint your tent, make a thumbnail sketch of the pattern you want before you start, and then make templates and stencils of the relevant designs. Then, when you've got your design worked out, use your stencils and templates to lay out your design in chalk. THEN start painting. Be careful, because paint is a bitch to get out of cloth and is very obvious if you don't get it all out. I tried to cheat by getting a color of paint that was close to the color of the fabric and using it for touch-ups but it didn't really work very well.

My lady & I painted our oval pavilion with gothic arches using fabric paint from 'Dick Blick' - an art store in this town. We bought water-soluble paint that we heat set with and iron, and it's stood up beautifully and didn't make things too difficult. We waterproofed the pavilion with 'Thompson's Waterseal' as well - we had to go over the painted areas a little thoroughly, but in general it was an amazing effect! Master Sean de Carrikfergus and I have had great luck on everything from banners, to tablecloths, to tents with acrylic paint cut with water. Ironing after painting seems to help when practical but is not imperative. Good luckAcrylic paint is a good modern medium for this purpose. Be sure the color you choose are light fast, or they will fade in the sun before the war is over. Cut the paint with acrylic gloss medium (buy it by the gallon, it's cheaper that way) to maintain a good flexibility on the cloth. Do not cut the paint with too much water or else it will run and bleed into the cloth.

If you wish to use period materials and techniques, ground pigments in a linseed oil binder will do the job nicely. It will yellow with age, however, and is prone to cracking. But there is something extraordinarily wonderful about sleeping in an authentic period pavilion. Acrylic paint is a good modern medium for this purpose. Be sure the color you choose are light fast, or they will fade in the sun before the war is over. Cut the paint with acrylic gloss medium (buy it by the gallon, it's cheaper that way) to maintain a good flexibility on the cloth. Do not cut the paint with too much water or else it will run and bleed into the cloth. 

GENERAL PAVILION--ROPES/STAKES

> Can someone please e-mail instructions for preparing ropes for the pavilion? I believe the can be done either with a wooden block for tension or with some sort of adjustable know for tension.en Tag Frithuric!

The wooden block (or dowel) is simple to make in the shop. Cut an appropriate length of wood that is at least three times as thick as your rope. Lay the piece down on a piece of scrap lumber. Bore two holes straight down (not into the end) that are slightly larger than your rope. Run the rope down through one hole and back up the other. Tie a knot in the end of the rope to keep it from sliding back through the hole.Just a word of warning. If you use non-synthetic rope, it tends to stretch in the rain. This causes your tent to sag. Tightening the ropes for the duration of the rain is a fine thing, but be sure to loosen them as/before the ropes dry. As they dry, they shrink again. Hopefully it is the stakes that give way rather than the cloth of the tent, but best not to tempt fate. Klaus von Trollenberg

>> >I assume a mundane tent (say 10X20) is heavier than a period one as it has >> >an interior frame structure requiring more poles whereas a period tent has >> >one center pole and only perimeter poles. However, when using a period >> >tent, what happens when the ground is so hard it is impossible to get >> >stakes in? The tent can't go up! Kevin Davis Connery wrote: >> With iron stakes, >> I've been able to anchor pavilions onto solid rock. Asphalt is much >> softer, and concrete is rarely as tough. (Now, getting *permission* to >> put holes in asphalt or concrete is a different matter.) Kim Pollard <kim@inna.net> replied: > Um, another good question may be just the opposite... what about >ground that has been soaked to the saturation point and will not hold >stakes any longer? Been there, done that, and still trying to find an >answer for the period tent (till then, I'm using a modern set-up). The obvious answer to me is "bigger stakes". Westerners who observed Bedouin culture in the 19th and early 20th century noticed that, to hold down large tents in windy conditions on sand, the Bedouins used stakes THREE FEET long. (This is my recollection from Faegre's _Tents: the Architecture of the Nomads_.) mar-Joshua ibn-Eleazar ha-Shalib --

Note. Crows foot. This is a fan of lighter lines than a guy line which goes from a guy line to the edge of the roof of the Pavillion in many drawings of period Pavillions. I believe that the intent is to spread the strain of holding the tent against the wind over a large section of the hoop. Using a single line would focus the strain a one point which might break the hoop and thus cause the tent to collapse. My crows feet consist of two loops that cross. The guy line ties around both loop tightly enough that the strains can be equalized between the elements of the crows foot.

/ /roof / _________seam line, with breaks for crows / / foot line / v grommeted hole for button string or ===== | crows foot line ===== v | ====== ===========\ | ====== ===\ tube \ Cloth tube should be a | \ for | close fit for the PVC | \hoop / pipe but not tight. | ----- |dag |

The knot you are looking for is called the Taut Line Hitch. I've tried to explain it over the phone before and was less than successful. I won't even try via e-mail. However, your local library or camping supply store should have any number of books on knots. (Or find someone who was a Boy Scout. That is how I learned.) The advantage to the Taut Line Hitch is that you can replace the guy ropes at any time without special preparation. The wooden block (or dowel) is simple to make in the shop. Cut an appropriate length of wood that is at least three times as thick as your rope. Lay the piece down on a piece of scrap lumber. Bore two holes straight down (not into the end) that are slightly larger than your rope. Run the rope down through one hole and back up the other. Tie a knot in the end of the rope to keep it from sliding back through the hole.

Just a word of warning. If you use non-synthetic rope, it tends to stretch in the rain. This causes your tent to sag. Tightening the ropes for the duration of the rain is a fine thing, but be sure to loosen them as/before the ropes dry. As they dry, they shrink again. Hopefully it is the stakes that give way rather than the cloth of the tent, but best not to tempt fate.

While I haven't tried it myself, a friend of long standing,(Lady Holly Elaina de Montague) had the item you are asking about. She removed the cloth cover and sewed a "flap" fo doubled material around the edge just outside the points where the ribs attached. Grommets were added to this, being set roughly 6" apart. The curtain wall was slightly wider at the bottom with loops for ten stakes set equal distances apart. The top of the wall also had grommets set to match the roof. The whole was laced together with quarter inch cotton rope. She had the top waterproofed before reassembling and used it successfully through some of the wettest storms West Kingdom could hit her with. Hope this helps

GENERAL PAVILION--GROMMETS

--In my sailing book (and I wish I knew where the heck it is) there is a depiction of old style grommits. A ring made from a slice of bone, filed smooth is sewn onto the fabric. Then it is sewn, and sewn, and sewn until no ring shows, and the zillion stiches are strong enough for you. This could be period for 50 thousand years ago. Another less pretty trick that you also don't want to do is with a pebble. Wrap a pebble in a corner of cloth and then tie it firmly with a piece of string. This is a good emergency replacement when a grommit rips out. I used it on a dining fly at pennsic for several years.

I don't know that you need grommits for tents. I used tabs. I didn't like the idea of holes in my tent. You can see my tent making instructions at: http://www.contrib.andrew.cmu.edu/~nh0g/nils.html. I was very pleased with the results.--nils k. hammer nh0g@andrew.cmu.edu

--I have a photograph of a fragment of a Roman (empire-era) tent with a fastening that appears to function similarly to a grommet. The original is is the Scottish National Museum in Edinburgh (so I assume that it may have been found in excavations from Hadrian's Wall).

Unfortunately, the focus is a little fuzzy in my photo, but the fragment is a tear-drop shaped piece of leather that appears to have been applied to the original tent by stitching all around the edge. (There are two the same shape and size, so the tear-drop shape is not an accident of survival.) In the large end of this piece, there is a round something (either another applied piece, or perhaps a section raised due to some round object behind the leather?) with two holes, through which a cord is threaded. (The round bit ends up looking like a two-hole button.) Unfortunately, the bad focus in the photo makes it difficult to tell exactly what is going on, however with this information, someone may be able to track down a report on the find that gives more details.--Tangwystyl

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GENERAL PAVILION--AWNINGS

If I am remembering the tents you have mentioned, I am under the impression that these have shade type things attached to the walls. If this is the case, then I can reasonably assert that these are not "period pavilions". The only documentation that I have ever seen has been for Turkey or Persia after about 1560, and then it is iffy. This info was the result of a research competition between a tent-making/research laurel, her household, and several else of us. BTW, if anyone has documentation to the contrary, I would LOVE to have it. ;-)

Cloth sunshades are shown on boat decks in "Battle of Lepanto" 1571, MW, pg. 214/215 with lovely scalloped and upside-down minaret dags on the sloped sides. These sunshades have a center beam and two side beams which give an internal structure. There are also is one rounded one in this picture and some rounded ones which look to have an internal structure something like the top of a covered wagon in another woodcuts I have in my library.

GENERAL PAVILION--UMBRELLAS

Elaina de Montague had the item you are asking about. She removed the cloth cover and sewed a "flap" of doubled material around the edge just outside the points where the ribs attached. Grommets were added to this, being set roughly 6" apart. The curtain wall was slightly wider at the bottom with loops for ten stakes set equal distances apart. The top of the wall also had grommets set to match the roof. The whole was laced together with quarter inch cotton rope. She had the top waterproofed before reassembling and used it successfully through some of the wettest storms West Kingdom could hit her with

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