Equipment reviews

On this page, we report about our experiences with our equipment. This part will be updated and completed from time to time.


Tunnel tent Robens Osprey 3EX

Tunel tent Robens Osprey 3EX
Tunel tent Robens Osprey 3EX

(updated 12.08.2019)

 

After more than 4 months we would like to report about our previous experiences with the Robens Osprey 3EX tent.

We really like the packing size (48x16cm) and the low weight (2,97Kg) of the tent. In addition, the setting up and dismantling is done within a very short time. The tent itself stands very stable. As usual with tunnel tents,
it is not able to stand free, it has to be lashed down with tent pegs.

So far, the tent withstood heavy rains and wind without any problems. Our things in the vestibule and we in the bedroom stayed dry.

The vestibule offers enough space to store our things weather protected. For example, 2 big waterproof packsacks (60ltr. each), 1 small waterproof packsack (30ltr.), 2 kites, 1 kitepump, our two tankbags, two pairs of motorcycle boots, our camping chairs and a little bit of small stuff find their place in here. Nevertheless it still offers the possibility to get through the anteroom into the interior. The vestibule itself has no floor.

The bedroom is well dimensioned. According to the manufacturer's specification, there is room for 3 people. We cannot confirm this. With two air mattresses on the left or right there is just enough room for 2 helmets and some clothes. For Kai, who is approx. 185cm, the tent is almost too short. He bumps the tent at night with his feet again and again.

So far we used the tent in temperatures between 0 and 38 degrees. The tent is very well insulated. You can feel a clear temperature difference between the anteroom and the bedroom. If there is a breeze, the air circulation works perfectly. The 4 ventilation openings can be opened and closed by zippers as desired.

At the time of our purchase (end of 2017) and upon request from the manufacturer, unfortunately there is no footprint for the tent. Since we consider this to be very useful, camp on different surfaces and would like to have the tent for a long time, we had to find an alternative. Based on the dimensions of the base area, we looked around at other manufacturers and found what we were looking for. Works perfectly.

Unfortunately we had to find out that the 3 poles bent slightly over time and the tent faded in places. Furthermore, the outer tent becomes porous in some places and small holes appear. The tent is mostly built up. So, we cannot understand, why there are mould stains / mildew spots. These occur in the places of ventilation and on the inner tent. At the moment we cannot find out where they come from. We have contacted the manufacturer and are waiting for information.

After a few weeks the velcro fastener at the tent entrance has worn out, it only works to a limited extent.

The supplied tent pegs bent and deformed during the first assembly. They couldn´t be used no longer. We complained about them and got a replacement. For our trip, however, we decided to use other, higher quality pegs to cover most soils (from sand to hard soil).

 

In general, we are satisfied with the tent. For our motorcycle trip the small packing size and the low weight are decisive. The fast
set-up is also important, so that we can quickly set up our home after hours of riding, or at 30 degrees Celsius, and start a cozy evening.

The only disappointing thing is that after such a short time the problems mentioned above have occurred.

We´ve expected more from a tent in the medium to high-price segment. (mancufacturer price is 739,95€)

According to the manufacturer, mildew stains are normal. We don't see it that way! After almost 5 months of use, a tent that is always maintained, cleaned and stored dry is not allowed to have mildew stains or holes. Unfortunately we don´t have another choice, we took the tips from Robens and cleaned the tent with household vinegar. With moderate success.

Edit 02.05.2019: Two days ago, a tent pole broke while setting up the tent. The contact to Robens as well as to the seller
did not bring any helpful support. With the supplied sleeve we can build up the tent now makeshift. We will see how long this
will work. We are not going to get a replacement pole or sleeve so fast.

Edit 12.08.2019: After a few more mails to the seller, he was willing to send us a new pole to Mexico. We had to pay the shipping.
After camping two times with the new pole it is already bent and will soon break. After we took down the tent yesterday, another
pole came out bent. Our journey cannot continue like this and we will actively look around for new manufacturers.

We are really disappointed and hope to find a tent in the future that we can rely on!

Finally, we cannot recommend buying this tent for a long-term trip through several climate zones.


Exped Synmat 7

Exped Synmat 7
Exped Synmat 7

(updated 12.08.2019)

 

We are very satisfied with the mattresses. The relatively small packing size (manufacturer information: 27x15cm) is perfect for our journey. Due to their thickness of 7cm you can sleep very comfortably. The integrated pump makes the inflation easy and the set up is made within a few minutes. The folding succeeds after a little practice also effortlessly. In our opinion the included packsack could be a little bigger. You have do stuff a little bit. But, no problem, you can do it... :-)

The insulation of the mat against heat and cold from the floor is really good. We had 0 degrees in Chile at night. Although the tent floor was cold, the temperatue on the mats was enjoyable. In the Atacama Desert at 30 degrees the tent floor was warm, almost hot. On the mats you almost felt nothing of that heat.

The cleaning is not so easy. In warm areas, e.g. Ecuador, sweat, remaining sun cream or mosquito repellent remain on the surface and form stains. These are difficult to remove. The manufacturer told us, just to pump the mattress completely and clean with a damp cloth. For us this didn´t work. We made the mats wet using a hose and carefully rubbed them with a sponge with a little bit of soap on it. The result was ok.

Unfortunately, two chambers of a mat have joined so that a large bulge has formed in the middle (see photos). Sadly, this is not repairable. After contact with Exped, we will get a replacement without any problems. Thank you very much for this!

Edit 12.08.2019: A few days ago the chambers of the second mattress also connected. Exped USA is sending us a free replacement.
We are very happy about this and say thank you again!

Conclusion: Very comfortable and super pack size. Very nice contact with the manufacturer. We always got fast, informative
and supportive answers. We would buy the mats again at any time.


Sea to Summit Aeros Ultralight Pillow

Sea to Summit Aeros Ultralight Pillow
Sea to Summit Aeros Ultralight Pillow

(updated 18.04.2019)

The packing size is unbeatable (manufacturer's specification: 5.5 x 8.5 cm, 70 g). Within a few seconds the pillow is inflated and can be used. You can sleep with more or less air, depending on your preference. The regulation is easy, because the air inlet and outlet are in the same valve.

Sadly, a pillow loses air already after the first months. We haven't found the problem yet and there are no cracks or holes. Once or twice a night we have to inflate the pillow again. Really a pity, because you sleep very well on them. We keep the pillows in the supplied bag and always place them inflated on the mattress directly.

We have contacted the manufacturer. We will receive a replacement when we are in the US, because it is not possible for Sea to Summit to ship to South and Central America. Thank you very much for this!

Conclusion: We are very satisfied with the pillows, you sleep great on them and the pack size is awesome! The contact with the manufacturer was perfect.


Woodboard Split 138

Woodboard Split
Woodboard Split

Split the board, double your fun!
Motorcycling and kitesurfing.

Included were:

  • The Woodboard Split (138 x 44)
  • Fins
  • Pads and straps
  • Handle
  • Required screws
  • An Allen wrench

What was missing from the accessories was a screwdriver. This is needed to mount the fins, the pads and straps and the handle.

In order to transport everything safely on our motorcycles, we bought a splitboard bag from another manufacturer.

The assembly takes a little time at the beginning, a manual was not included. Learning by doing.

This is how we assemble the Woodboard Split:

  • Assemble the board with the 7 allen screws.
  • Align the pads on the board according to your preference and screw them onto the board together with the straps (a little fiddly).
  • Screw the handle onto the board (here washers or something similar are missing --> the handle doesn´t fit tightly on the board and has a little play).
  • Mount the fins.
  • Go out and have fun!

After a couple of times you will setup the board faster and you will be on the water earlier. The board planes early and goes really well upwind. Smaller waves or shorebreak are no problem. We (60Kg and 85Kg) use the board with 9m and 12m freeride / wave kites. The straps are easy to adjust with velcro, are comfortable when going out barefoot and fit with thicker neoprene shoes.

The screws are loosening a little. We tighten them a little before each kite.

Conclusion: For our skill level and for our trip the board is a great choice!