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Thread: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

  1. #21

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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    I have 10 - 12 years on a Harrison tent and it's fine - I leave it set up most of the time. I have plenty of space to hide it under one of my wife's full size grand pianos. (Yes, she has more than one - she's a retired concert pianist and teacher.) Biggest issue I have is the cat napping in it it if I don't sort of close it a bit. I do vacuum it out occasionally.

  2. #22

    Join Date
    Oct 2001
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    Quote Originally Posted by Fred L View Post
    I have a sticky tent (and focus cloth) as well and am at the point where I'm tempted to use solvents on it. nothing to lose really, but it could mean having extra poles tempted to buy the Chinese eBay tent if I get another one. Have a cotton Shadowbox which I really like, but it's not as large as the jumbo harrison (which works well for 7x17)
    Fred,

    I have tried numerous cleaners with just a little success. I have sprayed the outside of mine with a clear acrylic spray and it has made it less sticky and at least at this point doesn't seem to have affected the material. And by keeping it out the smell of the acrylic spray seems to have dissipated. So the acrylic spray helps a little although I certainly don't know the long term effects. I have one of the Chinese versions also that has worked well over the years and the material used seems much different than the Harrisons.

  3. #23
    Drew Wiley
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    Sep 2008
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    Any fabric urethane coating rolled up tight, especially in humid conditions, breaks down and becomes sticky over time. And just like its main ingredient, it starts smelling like piss when decomposing. Film tents, camping tents, raincoats, makes no difference. I use thin polyethylene liners inside my film tents anyway, on those rare occasions I still use them. I checked one of my Harrison tents a year ago and it was still OK.
    A much more expensive tent - a Bibler expedition tent, mostly patented tri-layer Goretex, but with a urethane-coated nylon floor, had gotten sticky. I polished off all the stickies with an auto paint rubbing compound, rinsed that off well with denatured alcohol, then recoated it with another product from the auto store intended for vinyl and leather restoration. It seems to have worked, but I wouldn't necessarily recommend the same chore for a film tent, where nearly all the fabric is urethane coated.
    If my liner bag idea doesn't work, then the film tent's useful life is probably over. If the urethane breakdown is just starting, and not peeling yet, then camping stores like REI sell special liquids for rejuvenating urethane coatings.
    I wouldn't personally buy anything like this Chinese-made without doing homework first - they tend to so heavily saturate their coated fabrics with phthalates that there's a high risk of skin rash, and gosh knows what risk to film itself. In any event, invert the bag and air it out for several months before use. Better, buy another Harrison. You get what you pay for.

  4. #24

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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    Update on sticky Harrison film changing tents. Like many, I apparently stored my tent improperly in its stuff sack. Stored in my garage it undoubtedly experienced the high temps of my area. The stickiness and smell were unpleasant, it was not something I wanted to continue to use. How about cleaning it? Since the sticky seems to be petroleum based I tried a water based degreaser. Tried it on a corner and the silver scrubbed off, but no stickiness. So I tried some dilute clothes detergent, gently applying with a sponge and then rinsing with a damp cloth. 80% better. Then a made a dilute mix of dish detergent and vinegar, very gentle application and rinse. 90-95% better. A little of the silver came off but overall, for the 40 minutes or so that I spent on it I am very pleased with the results and I have a functional tent. Hope this helps someone in the future.
    Last edited by brucetaylor; 12-Aug-2022 at 14:44.

  5. #25
    Martin Aislabie's Avatar
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    I have had my Harrison Tent for about 15 years and like many kept it stored - rolled up in its stuff sack.

    It went sticky after about 6 years but I have persisted with it.

    However, earlier this year I did a light tightness test - I put a light inside the tent and turned off the lights in my darkroom and wasn't surprised to find it isn't light tight anymore.

    The light leaks were mainly concentrated around the joints of the arms into the tent.

    15 years is a good useful life for such an invaluable piece of kit - so I'll be buying a new one before my next trip.

    Martin

  6. #26

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    Aug 2022
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    Quote Originally Posted by Martin Aislabie View Post
    I have had my Harrison Tent for about 15 years and like many kept it stored - rolled up in its stuff sack.

    It went sticky after about 6 years but I have persisted with it.

    However, earlier this year I did a light tightness test - I put a light inside the tent and turned off the lights in my darkroom and wasn't surprised to find it isn't light tight anymore.

    The light leaks were mainly concentrated around the joints of the arms into the tent.

    15 years is a good useful life for such an invaluable piece of kit - so I'll be buying a new one before my next trip.

    Martin
    i had the same problem with TWO tents..one jumbo one small.I sent those back to repair and they said they can't be repaired anymore and i asked for a discount because i didnt wanna give up on two tents and pay another $300 for a brand new one.
    They of course ignored my discount questions and discarded the tents.( told them i don't want those to be returned if they are non-repairable)
    Today i called them again when i was driving by their shop and asked if they didn't discard them i can take it home and lady was like no we discarded them if you wanna buy brand new one you can..
    Ok..very good customer support
    Is there any other brand that i can get tents from i just don't want to deal with Harrison tents. Like they were selling these tents with stuff sack and that's how i stored it and now they are telling people you shouldn't store them in a stuff sack and these being sticky is a user error? cool cool
    Mines were also sticky as honey.

  7. #27

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    May 2006
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    I have a jumbo Harrison Film Changing Tent as well and have had it for about 10 years.

    I store my tent in the following manner:

    I lay a fitted bed sheet on the floor with the fitted corners facing up.
    I lay the tent silver side down on the fitted bed sheet and tuck the corners of the tent into the fitted corners of the bed sheet.
    I then loosely fold both of the items toward the black side of the tent so that the silver side does not touch each other.
    I then store the tent loosely in a large cardboard box with holes that I punched into the box so the tent can breath.

    So far I have had no problems.
    "People take different roads seeking fulfillment and happiness. Just because they're not on your road doesn't mean they've gotten lost." - H. Jackson Brown

  8. #28
    Daniel Stone's Avatar
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    A cotton pillow case works well for storing a tent, LOOSELY inside, if you cannot hang it up in a closet or behind a door.
    The best storage method is to hang it up in a closet or behind a door, so that it gets some airflow, and make sure it doesn't see high temperatures(90F, 32C ~) for longer, sustained periods of time. Leave both of the zippers slightly open, and from time to time, pull it out and air out the inside.
    The silver material that Harrison uses is specially made for them, and the silver coating is applied to another lightweight nylon fabric that has a rubberized, pigmented coating on the back, plus a DWR coating on the front. LOTS of chemicals going on there.

    The included stuff sack is for travel or short-term storage only!

    My Jumbo and standard tents are in good condition because I store them appropriately. The Jumbo is over 10yrs old. The standard likely older. Yes, for a long time Harrison did not include a care card with the "proper" storage instructions for long-term storage when the tent is not being used. The stuff sack is made from 400 denier nylon pack cloth, which also has a polyurethane backing on the reverse side, and DWR coatings(for water repellency) on the face side. Again, more chemicals. Some, that long term, DO NOT interact well when they are both outgassing within a confined space.

    A Harrison tent, when properly cared for, can last a LONG time. But you must take care of it. Only clean it with water, preferably distilled. Clean, lint-free cloth or a very, very rung-out sponge, like nearly dry. NO SOAP. If the silver coating starts to fleck off, or get gummy, let the tent air out in the backyard sunshine for a couple days, zippers left open so the air can flow inside it as well. Bring it in at night before the dew can collect on it. This can help with any residual outgassing that might be occurring. Then using that very, very, rung-out sponge with distilled water, you can lightly clean it, if needed. A good vacuuming with a brush attachment is usually all that is needed if you are dealing with loose dust. But if you're in a dry, low-humidity climate where static is more likely, a light sponge to wipe out dust prior to use can be helpful as well.

  9. #29
    Alan Klein's Avatar
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    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    I follow the instructions. I fold it loosely inside an open carton. I don't keep it in the sack bag. I think that's just for traveling.

  10. #30

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    Feb 2007
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    Canyon Country, California
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    157

    Re: Harrison Jumbo Film Changing Tent - Sticky

    I've had mine 8 years. I fold it in quarters, opened, place it in a cotton pillow case, and store it on a shelf in a corner of my wardrobe closet. No signs of "stickiness" yet. Although, I might take some of Gary892's advise, and separate the silver with a cotton cloth.

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