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Thread: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

  1. #1
    tgtaylor's Avatar
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    Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    I've noticed that the silver fabric on the Harrison changing tent becomes "sticky" over time. I first noticed this on the pup tent which I hadn't used in awhile. There was an online post a while back suggesting that insect repellant can case this. I bought the pup used from a local Calumet several years back where it was a rental so maybe insect repellant got on it then but not while I was using it. I switched to using only thee 8x10 tent but noticed that it too was getting a little sticky on the silver fabric. Last week I set-up both to let them air out. That seems to help as they are not as sticky as before. I wonder if the stickiness is due to storing the tents in the storage sack where you usually fold them with the silver sides in contact with each other? Should they be stored set-up instead? My Thermorest air mattress specifically states to store the mattress inflated and I've kept the mattress inflated under the bed when returning from a trip. I've had the mattress for at least 10 years and never had a problem and the 8x10 Harrison for that long too.

    Thomas

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    Steve Sherman's Avatar
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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    I just recently threw away a Harrison darkcloth that had a silver lining which became very sticky over time. I am especially interested in other comments on this topic as I have Harrison ULF changing tent that has been stored for several years in a closed position.
    Tanks for posting this question.


    Real photographs are born wet !

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  3. #3

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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    The biggest issue is storage where the laminated materials are rolled tight, and plasticizers in the material out-gas, and start attacking itself, while not allowing the material to evenly breathe... I have had this happen with rainjackets and some nice softboxes someone gave me, that when opened, everything was sticking to itself, after being tightly packed for about 10 years...

    If only slightly sticky, clean as much of the sticky off as you can with strong detergent, alcohol, or lighter fluid, and give it a thorough wash/dry, then get a tin of mink oil leather protector from the shoe shine dept, and rub and polish it in... The mink oil will penetrate and replace some of the lost plasticizer, and the silicone in it will cap the surface... YMMV depending on how far the "disease" has developed, but will often halt it if not too far gone...

    Try not to store these materials rolled up, but allow breathing space, and that goes for vinyl, plastics, or other synthetics too... And keep away from UV, or temp extremes...

    But one of my nice softboxes was a real gone daddy, and repeated treatments and sunbaths etc did nothing but stick the silvered and white insides to itself and my sleeve, and smelled a little like New Jersey (same material), so it ended up going down the round hole to another life...

    Call Harrison, and explain, 'cuz some mfgs will replace their products long after purchase, and don't forget to mention to them that you have been asking about this on on-line forums wondering what could cause this, and see if that helps get their attention... ;-)

    Good Luck!!!

    Steve K

  4. #4

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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    On the Camera Essentials product support page https://www.cameraessentials.com/product-support they recommend storing the tent unrolled in a cardboard box.

    I didn't know that when I got my first one (used). I kinda knew to store it unrolled, but I had the not-so-brilliant idea of storing it unrolled in a plastic leaf bag to keep the dust off. That was a mistake, since the tent wasn't sticky before, but since then it has become so, and seems to be getting worse with time. Tent still works perfectly well though.

    Bob

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    tgtaylor's Avatar
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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    Thanks for that link biedron. I guess I never read the instructions when I bought the 8x10. I'm going to store both tents flat under the bed with the air mattress.

    Thomas

  6. #6
    Roger Thoms's Avatar
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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    I have a nice big mesh bag to store mine in, loosely folded and I keep it in a cool dark closet. Mine about 4 years old, so far so good.

    Roger

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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    I leave my Harrison tent fully set up under my wife's full size Grand piano. I knew they left all that unused space under there for something.

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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    I experienced this with a Nikon D70 DSLR that I had not used for a long time. And it was sitting in an open box near my desk, so for sure, it was not closed up in an air-tight enclosure.

    It seems to me that I have also experienced something like a Harrison tent getting sticky (I don't think it was my Harrison but will check tomorrow). I wish I could remember what it was...

    Steve K.: thank you for the mink oil suggestion, I will add it to my files.
    Last edited by AtlantaTerry; 24-Oct-2017 at 17:08.

  9. #9

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    what about using Armor All?

    Just a wild idea, but what about using one of those products made to be used on automobile dashboards such as Armor All? Would it help to "rejuvenate" plastic materials that have gone sticky?

  10. #10

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    Re: Sticky Fabric om Harrison Tents

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlantaTerry View Post
    I experienced this with a Nikon D70 DSLR that I had not used for a long time. And it was sitting in a cardboard box near my desk, so for sure, it was not closed up in an air-tight enclosure.

    It seems to me that I have also experienced something like a Harrison tent getting sticky (I don't think it was my Harrison but will check tomorrow). I wish I could remember what it was...

    Steve K.: thank you for the mink oil suggestion, I will add it to my files.
    Different synthetics that are meant to be soft and flexible have a slight excess of plasticizer in them to keep them supple, and keeps them in a very slightly "melted" state, but when the plasticizer comes up to the surface of the material, it produces the "sticky" we know... If it dries out from loss of this, then hardening/cracking, but worst is gooey melting from excess... Armor-All and stuff for the car spreads silicone over to "cap " this loss, and adds a UV barrier, but does not replace plasticizer... This also happens a lot with other materials like silicone rubber grips on our cameras, tools etc... Clean-up and mink oil is your only shot, short of replacement... Soft vinyl bellows can be saved if caught in time, before the materials just melt or harden/crack...

    YMMV

    Steve K

    ps; Terry, happy 1,000th!!! Long may you run.. sk
    Last edited by LabRat; 24-Oct-2017 at 00:42.

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