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OWNER REVIEW: MSR Missing Link tent

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  • Johanna
    This is my first review. Thanks for looking it over! MSR Missing Link Tent Name: Johanna Turner Age: 33 Gender: Female Height: 5 8 Weight: 125lbs Email
    Message 1 of 3 , Nov 25, 2007
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      This is my first review. Thanks for looking it over!

      MSR Missing Link Tent

      Name: Johanna Turner
      Age: 33
      Gender: Female
      Height: 5'8"
      Weight: 125lbs
      Email address: immunity_idol@...
      City, State, Country: Los Angeles, CA, USA

      Date: November 25, 2007

      Backpacking Background: I have been hiking and backpacking since college. I have
      recently gotten into canyoneering. I typically hike 8-12 miles on a day hike every
      weekend, and often once or twice during the week. I plan several backpacking trips
      during the summer, which are generally two to five days in length. I also car camp many
      times during the whole year. I consider myself an ultralight backpacker. My total pack
      weight, including food, for 3 days is around 20 pounds. The only terrain I don't hike in is
      snow.

      Manufacturer: MSR
      Year of Manufacture: 2004
      Manufacturer URL: http://www.msrcorp.com/
      Listed Weight: Minimum Weight: 3 lbs
      Packaged Weight: 3lbs 7oz
      *weight does not include trekking poles
      Weight as delivered:

      Product Description: The MSR Missing Link is a two person, three season, single wall tent.
      It is made of bright orange silicon coated ripstop nylon. It comes in a matching orange
      stuff sack, with six small aluminum stakes. Trekking poles are typically used as the main
      support, though any pole of the right length (or even sticks) can be used. I had some
      carbon fiber poles made, since I don't use trekking poles. There is one door, and a large
      awning. A strip of mesh runs along the top front and bottom rear of the tent. The door
      has a mesh layer as well as a waterproof layer, which can be zipped or unzipped.

      Field information: I have used this tent in many different locations, mostly in California.
      My first testing location is in the Sequoia National Forest, which has soft dirt. The ground
      has many nice flat areas to pitch a tent that is not freestanding. The weather was about
      75 degrees during the day, and 45 at night. There were few mosquitos, and calm breezes.
      It didn't rain.

      My first experience pitching the tent revealed a few things. The Missing Link saves weight
      by eliminating poles. This means it must be staked out carefully and securely. It didn't
      take more than 5 minutes to get the tent up, but I needed to adjust the stakes and tie line
      lengths quite a bit to get the tent nice and tight. The instructions printed on the stuff sack
      were detailed and helpful. The stakes are thin and small. They are easy to push into this
      soil. If I placed a stake at one end, then pulled on the tent to place a stake at the opposite
      end, I could pull the first stake right out and have to start over. I have since worked out
      the science of it, and it now goes up quickly. I usually find some good sized rocks to put
      on top of the stakes to keep them secure. The length of the guylines makes for a real
      tripping hazard, even with the reflective cordage MSR provided. After a a few near
      faceplants, I decided to simply stay away from the sides of the tent altogether. I also
      needed a large area to set up, since the guylines extend so far out.

      I found that although the six aluminum stakes provided are enough to pitch the tent, eight
      stakes would be ideal. I used some small sticks instead – one to prop up the back flap,
      and improve airflow, and another to stake out a rear guyline that pulls the back of the tent
      out, creating more room inside.

      The tent is very roomy inside. It is especially good for tall people. At 5'8", I have about a
      foot of room at both my head and feet, where I can store shoes, my pack, or other items.
      The mesh door is large, and zips all the way down to the floor, giving a nice airy feeling
      with a good view. Since there was no threat of rain, I didn't stake out the awning, but
      instead folded it back over the top of the tent. This way, I didn't need to duck under it to
      get in or out of the tent. I can also sit up with plenty of headroom, and imagined easily
      sitting there playing cards with someone and being very comfortable.

      The humidity on this trip was low, and I didn't have to zip up the waterproof nylon part of
      the door. Probably because of these two factors, I didn't get any condensation inside. In
      the morning, I was in direct sun, and it quickly got too warm to be comfortable.

      Packing up was simple and fast. The Missing Link rolls right up to a nice compact size –
      larger than a nalgene, but smaller than a typical sleeping bag in a stuff sack.

      California weather is so great, I've never been able to test the waterproofness of my
      Missing Link in the field. It's an important part of any tent, so I set it up in the backyard
      one day during a heavy winter rainstorm, and left it out there overnight. We got about two
      inches of rain that day and night, and in the morning there were a few drops of water in
      the corners of the tent, on the floor. Nothing that would have been a problem on a real
      trip. I didn't do any seam sealing on my own, so this was a test of how it performs
      straight from the factory. The tent had gotten a little saggy from the constant pounding. I
      have to think the guylines probably stretched a little from being wet. Again, nothing that
      would have bothered me much if I were actually inside trying to sleep.

      I have had this tent in windy conditions (30mph gusts), and it did fall over on me a couple
      of times, until I found some nice heavy rocks to keep those little stakes in the ground
      where they belong. Then the tent was tight enough that there wasn't a lot of annoying
      flapping noise either.

      Summary: The MSR Missing Link is a comfortable, reliable tent for three season
      backpacking. The extra care and finesse it takes to pitch it is an easy trade off for the
      roominess and light weight. The thin fabric is surprisingly strong, and has survived
      several trips on abrasive decomposed granite, sharp pine needles, and lots of tension on
      the guylines, with no noticeable wear and tear. I like the design of this tent, and would
      recommend it to backpackers who don't mind taking a few extra minutes of setup.
    • Jamie D.
      PLEASE READ THIS EMAIL IN FULL. IT IS MOST IMPORTANT! Hi Johanna, Glad to see you made it over here. Hope all is well with you and the pups. Here s the formal
      Message 2 of 3 , Nov 30, 2007
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        PLEASE READ THIS EMAIL IN FULL. IT IS MOST IMPORTANT!

        Hi Johanna,
        Glad to see you made it over here. Hope all is well with you and the
        pups. Here's the formal stuff. Let me know if have any questions.

        Thanks for your Owner's Review. It has been added to the Owner
        Review Queue and will be picked up by an Edit Moderator soon. Do
        not worry if nothing happens with it for several days. All our
        Editors are volunteers and your report will be subject to an
        official edit within fourteen days. If you have not had a response
        from an Edit Moderator via the Yahoo Groups list within this
        timeframe, please let me know directly at jdeben@....

        To assist in this process, if this is your first Owner Review we ask
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        Edit Administration Manager
      • rayestrella1
        Hello Johanna, Thank you for your Owner Review, your initial edits will follow. They will take the following format; EDIT: must be changed Edit: should be
        Message 3 of 3 , Dec 3, 2007
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          Hello Johanna,

          Thank you for your Owner Review, your initial edits will follow. They
          will take the following format;

          EDIT: must be changed
          Edit: should be changed but will be left to your discretion
          Comment: just that or something to think about

          When you have made the changes please repost here with REPOST added
          to the subject line. Include your name also please.

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          http://www.backpackgeartest.org/lesson.php?lesson=BecomeTester&page=1

          Please notice the form that the review should take in the "Examples",
          you may also wish to browse the reviews of other experienced members
          for examples of the proper form.

          A helpful tool is the Mentoring Program that teams new reviewers with
          experienced veterans to help get them through their first review(s).
          If you'd like more assistance or guidance with the process you can
          request a mentor by sending an email to the mentor coordinator, Jenn
          K, at mentor@...

          Ray



          ***City, State, Country: Los Angeles, CA, USA

          EDIT: the state needs to be spelled out for the benefit of our
          international readers



          ***I typically hike 8-12 miles on a day hike every weekend,

          EDIT: needs metric conversion (13 – 19 km)



          ***My total pack weight, including food, for 3 days is around 20
          pounds.

          EDIT: same thing here. All weights and measurements must have
          conversions. Please go through and look for all instances. Here is an
          easy-to-use converter;
          http://www.backpackgeartest.org/convert.html



          ***Manufacturer: MSR

          EDIT: you need to spell out the name the first time. Then you can use
          MSR all you want



          ***Weight as delivered:

          EDIT: you are missing this.



          ***My first testing location is in the Sequoia National Forest,

          EDIT: as this is a review not a test (which we do of tents) could you
          please change "My first testing locatiion" to "The first place I
          used…"

          Also can you please put a field data section listing a few of the
          places you have used the tent and the conditions to show that you
          have the minimum required use to write about it? One trip is not
          enough.



          ***There were few mosquitos,

          EDIT: mosquitoes



          ***The length of the guylines makes for a real tripping hazard,

          Comment: benn there, tripped over that…


          ***After a a few near faceplants,

          EDIT: "face plants" or "face-plants" and delete one "a"



          ***It is especially good for tall people.

          EDIT: you need to keep this about your experience. To say that it is
          good for others is speculation as you can't really know what is good
          for others.



          At 5'8", I have about a foot of room at both my head and feet,

          EDIT: need conversion numbers


          ***We got about two inches of rain that day and night,

          EDIT: same thing



          *** Nothing that would have been a problem on a real trip. I didn't
          do any seam sealing on my own, so this was a test of how it performs
          straight from the factory. The tent had gotten a little saggy from
          the constant pounding. I have to think the guylines probably
          stretched a little from being wet. Again, nothing that would have
          bothered me much if I were actually inside trying to sleep.

          EDIT: the problem with these is the fact that since you did not use
          them in those conditions you can not be sure that it would not have
          bothered you. (To be honest my single wall tents bother me a lot when
          they get saggy and the wet tent starts hitting me.) You can reword
          this or just drop the mention to the guesses.



          ***I have had this tent in windy conditions (30mph gusts),

          EDIT: needs a space after the "30" and a conversion to km/h
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