Golite Hex 3 review

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Golite Hex 3 review

Post by Woods Walker » Tue Aug 14, 2007 10:36 pm

Golite Hex 3 review.

Technical Information: Hex 3

Ultra-lite, expedition-ready, and simple to pitch, our best-selling Hex 3 is a model of backcountry versatility! This 4 season teepee-style shelter sheds wind and weather brilliantly and can be used by itself, with the Hex 3 Floor, or with the Hex 3 Nest inner bug tent. You can pitch it with the micro-adjustable Easton® aluminum pole included, on snow, over a paddle or ski pole, or hang it from a branch via its top loop. Dual roof vents provide excellent air flow, and reflective stake out loops keep you from tripping in the middle of the night.

Shelter Specs
• Type: 4-season, 3-person
• Height: 66 inches
• Area: 65 sq. ft | 6.1 sq. m
• Main Body Weight : 28 oz | 790 g
• Pole Weight: 14oz | 400g
• Stake Weight: 5oz | 140g

Technical Information: Hex 3 inner tent

The perfect companion to the Hex 3 shelter, the Hex 3 Nest can be pitched beneath the Hex 3 canopy or used alone on rainless nights to provide complete bug protection without losing space and comfort. Featuring a 6000 mm waterproof bathtub floor and rugged no-see-um mesh, the Nest is still amazingly lite-weight. Like the Hex 3 shelter, the Nest can be pitched using a single center pole (sold separately or with the Hex 3 canopy), over a paddle or extended trekking pole, or by hanging it from a tree branch from above.

Shelter Specs

• Type: 3 person
• Height: 66 inches
• Area: 59 sq. ft | 5.7 sq. m
• Main Body Weight : n/a
• Pole Weight: n/a
• Stake Weight: n/a

http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6106&s=1

The Golite Hex 3 with inner tent is a complete 4-season shelter system that uses the proven tipi shape for great wind and weather resistance at a reduced weight compared to other shelters of similar size. The shelter has a silicon impregnated canopy. The advantages of silicon over urethane are numerous. Silicon is much stronger and weather resistant than urethane. This strength allows for a lighter nylon outer wall that is 100% water proof. Silicon can be expected to last for many years longer than a urethane coating. All Golite shelters use a special thread that does not allow water to pass. So the shelter does not require seam waterproofing by the owner.

The shelter packs down very small. Here is a photo of both components. The Hex and inner tent. A standard wide mouth canteen is used for scale.

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If setting up as a complete shelter first the user must erect the inner tent. It has a fully water proof floor and offers 100% bug protection. All that needs to be done is stake down the base and push the adjustable pole up. There is protection on both floor and the cone so the pole will not harm the tent.

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After that place the Hex 3 canopy over the inner tent and stake down the tie-offs. The canopy has protected vents that allows for ventilation in all types of weather even if the large door is closed.

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For scale I included a very large Rottweiler. The shelter comes in both sun and sage. The sage is more like forest green and blends in very well with most woodland settings.

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Here is a photo of the inside. The pole is a high quality Easton Aluminum adjustable unit that breaks down small. The inner bug net acts as a liner to prevent condensation from dripping down.

Image

The tie-offs are light reflective. It is very easy to find the shelter in the dark using a head lamp. Helps a person avoid tripping over the side tie-offs. Some may not like this feature if looking to keep a low profile after dark. I think this could be rectified with some paint, ink or duct tape. My advice is to leave them alone as they are a nice added feature.

Image

Pros:

The shelter is just massive for the pack weight. The materials used for the canopy and inner tent are very high quality. The zippers are YKK and the pole is Easton. The pegs are very very good. The Golite Aluminum pegs are light weight and extremely bend resistant. They hold great too. I would recommend these to anyone looking to upgrade their tent stakes.

http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6204&s=1

The shelter does not need to be set up with a pole as there is a tie-off on the top. This is not recommended for winter camping. The canopy can be set up as a floorless tipi type shelter without the inner tent. The high peak allows a greater degree of comfort than some smaller shelters. The shape is very wind and weather resistant. It is one of the lightest 4-season shelters on the market. The single pole system is very easy to setup.

Cons:

The shelter is not free standing. This means it must be staked to the ground for support. The center pole takes up some internal room. The shelter is by no means cheap. If looking to purchase the system I would shop around as often there are sales.
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Post by chitown2k » Wed Aug 15, 2007 12:06 am

Woods, your writes ups are so good, really man. Thanks.

You appeal to the gear whore in me and a tent is one of the new items that I have on my wish list.

I have been looking for a tent in the "micro' department, smaller is better in my book. This one has been bookmarked :D
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Post by SharkChild » Wed Aug 15, 2007 12:23 am

Damnit Woods Walker

I might even by the tent because of you. I just need to see how much books are going to cost first.

Nice write up.

I need more pics(convincing) to help me. :D

You and Gunny are going to leave me in the poor house.

No more steak for me.

How come your tent is a different color?
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Post by Woods Walker » Wed Aug 15, 2007 12:54 am

sharkchild wrote:Damnit Woods Walker

I might even by the tent because of you. I just need to see how much books are going to cost first.

Nice write up.

I need more pics(convincing) to help me. :D

You and Gunny are going to leave me in the poor house.

No more steak for me.

How come your tent is a different color?
My tent is the standard sage however often the camera has issues showing colors of coated nylon based on light. The two stuff sacks are made of the same color fabric as the tent. The photo of the stuff sacks shows best the color of the shelter but not 100%. It is more forrest green than appears in the photos however this is subjective as lots of colors are often called "forrest green" etc. The inside shots show the green somewhat.
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Post by PistolPete » Wed Aug 15, 2007 8:28 pm

Great write-up!
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Post by JCD » Thu Aug 16, 2007 5:32 pm

Love the write up.

Does it actually fit three people? Looking at the golite description, it has the third guy lying right beneath the pole.

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Post by SharkChild » Sat Aug 25, 2007 1:03 am

Woods Walker
What kind of tarp are you using? Is it the big heavy blue one that you can find at walmart?
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Post by Squirrley » Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:35 am

sharkchild wrote:Woods Walker
What kind of tarp are you using? Is it the big heavy blue one that you can find at walmart?
Looks to be ye generic blue tarp, yes.
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Post by SharkChild » Sat Aug 25, 2007 11:25 pm

What size is the tarp?
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Post by SharkChild » Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:46 pm

The hex 3 is a very simple tent to put up.
here is a pic of my first try. It is not good because I was being bitten by a bunch of mesquitos so I had to stop half ass and go inside.

Image

WoodsWalker I have a couple of questions:
What is this used for?
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Now I have a question about setting it up.

Do I put the stakes through this first?
Image
Then stretch it out.
And put the remaining stakes through this:
Image







The tent is very light weight fits into my bob very nicely also. Will have a review when I get to field test it.
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Post by Squirrley » Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:51 pm

Damn, looks real nice! I know what piece of gear I'm gettin next.
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Post by SharkChild » Thu Sep 06, 2007 10:00 pm

I will post better pictures when the mosquitoes stop bothering me. it is very nice. Even though my tent looks like crap. I want to test it out in my backyard but, before I do that I need the nest to come in because the mosquitos are killing me.
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Post by Woods Walker » Thu Sep 06, 2007 10:57 pm

Yes you put the stakes though those loops. The buckles are so it can be tightened after staking.

Here is a somewhat tighter pitch of the HEX without the floor or nest.

Image

The shelter was set up with the door staked wide open. There are more options than a normal tent. Once mastered you can make the shelter do many things.

The rope is guide line so if the area you want to stake out has a rock you run some of that line a bit out than loop the stake though that. I believe the guide line from Golite is adjustable after being staked down just like the tire offs. If you look at the tie-off near the tree in my photos I used the Golite cord for just that purpose. With the bug nest the shelter is easier to set up. However one pro of the floorless canopy is that the thing can be set up over rocks/ small brush and on uneven ground. Only your sleeping area needs to be level. Once you get a few hours under your belt setting up the canopy only will be second nature. The bug nest works very well for keeping those blood suckers under control. The Sil coating on the canopy is very strong and water just flies right off it. This makes for easy packing after a rainstorm.

As you shown not all the tie-offs are adjustable. I set the shelter up keeping the shape of each panel. I don’t remember how I first set the thing up. It could be better to stake down the adjustable tie-offs first taunt than put down the non adjustable ones. But now I just set it up any old way based on the ground in about 5-minutes. But this came with practice. It is kinda hard to remember the order of operation with something that is done without thinking about it. I can do it blind but this was not the case at first. I hear your cry about being bitten by bugs when setting up a new shelter. This has happened to me and was very frustrating. That Hex has tons of room for the packweight even with the bug nest. The whole system packs down small and is very light.
Last edited by Woods Walker on Thu Sep 06, 2007 11:17 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by SharkChild » Thu Sep 06, 2007 11:14 pm

I have seen rope in one of your pictures but I did not know what it was for. When i got in the tent I know it was for me. I felt that the Easton® aluminum pole were very sterdy. When I first saw your reviews and researched the tent I liked it a lot. Now that I got the change to put it up and touch it, the Hex 3 is better than I expected. I am very happy with the tent.

Thanks,Woods Walker
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Post by Woods Walker » Thu Sep 06, 2007 11:38 pm

Glad you like it. Once you have the bug nest the whole thing comes together perfect. What I like most about the hex is the modular approach Golite took with this system. As a tarp camper I don't like being constrained by a standard fixed tent. Often I just use the canopy and pole during non bug times. A small ground cloth under my sleeping bag/pad and I am good to go. For bugs or when I want the added protection of a double walled bathtub floored shelter I add the nest even in winter. The floor of the nest covers the gaps on the canopy stopping all wind. The nest acts as a liner too. Heck you can even set up the canopy only without a pole using the top tie off. The whole shelter works with the natural environment not forcing a set shape or setup. For me this works out better. Others like a more simple one setup system. This is just fine and often works out well but the tent is constrained to the limitations of a flat rock free foot print. Also with the Bug nest the Hex is a full featured 4-season tent at a reduced weight and pack size. That pole can handle a heavy snow load. No reasonable amount of wind will have any effect on the shelter but there is a learning curve. But this is part of the fun. Someone on another form even added a stove to the Hex.

Image

The pitch was a little off but I must commend this person for his innovation. I think the Silicon impregnated into the nylon has something like a 30 year life expectancy. Urethane coatings start to degenerate after 5-10 years. The Sil nylon is crazy light weight too.
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Post by chitown2k » Thu Sep 27, 2007 5:31 pm

Woods or someone who knows...

Am I missing anything?

Here is the stuff I am looking at:

http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6106&s=1 <http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6106&s=1>

These are additions:

http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6109&s=1 <http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6109&s=1>

and

http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6107&s=1 <http://www.golite.com/product/productde ... SH6107&s=1>

Also, what stove are you using in that pic and how do you prevent it from damaging the tent floor or tarp when the pipes get hot?

Thanks,
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Post by SharkChild » Thu Sep 27, 2007 5:44 pm

For the golite all you need is this:
1. GoLite Hex 3 Shelter System This is the most important part.

2. You could get the nest or the floor, you don't need both.

Woods Walker and I have the Shelter system and the nest.

I bought the floor but I sent it back because I don't need it. The nest already has the tube, so the nest is the floor with a with a very good mesquito net.

You should look around for deals.

Campsaver has the Shelter and the floor for $229

CCoutdoors has the shelter for $190


I would look for place that also have free shipping. I bought my stuff real cheap and I got free shipping. Just shop around online.
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Post by chitown2k » Thu Sep 27, 2007 8:49 pm

sharkchild wrote:For the golite all you need is this:
1. GoLite Hex 3 Shelter System This is the most important part.

2. You could get the nest or the floor, you don't need both.

Woods Walker and I have the Shelter system and the nest.

I bought the floor but I sent it back because I don't need it. The nest already has the tube, so the nest is the floor with a with a very good mesquito net.

You should look around for deals.

Campsaver has the Shelter and the floor for $229

CCoutdoors has the shelter for $190


I would look for place that also have free shipping. I bought my stuff real cheap and I got free shipping. Just shop around online.
Thanks Sharkchild, I would have ended up buying both add-ons.

Any info on the stove - do you have one and how do you set it up?
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Post by SharkChild » Thu Sep 27, 2007 9:21 pm

chitown2k
I am wondering about the stove also.
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Post by Towanda » Fri Sep 28, 2007 12:44 am

Question: what makes a Kifaru tipi ~$500 better than a GoLite Hex 3? Surely it can't just be the stove jack?
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Post by Squirrley » Fri Sep 28, 2007 8:58 am

Towanda wrote:Question: what makes a Kifaru tipi ~$500 better than a GoLite Hex 3? Surely it can't just be the stove jack?
I'm guessing at least some of it is the name Kifaru on it, but I'd imagine it would be of top notch construction, and I know they offer them in a variety of sizes up to really big.
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Post by Woods Walker » Sat Sep 29, 2007 9:26 pm

There are lots of differences between my Kifaru 4 man tipi and Golite hex that in my view make it worth the extra money. First off the guy who designed the Kifaru tipi is a friend of mine. Anyone that drinks with me inside my tipi gets my respect. He built the shelter from the ground up to withstand nearly any weather condition hurricane and tornado withstanding. Seen the guy snowshoe though binding wind driven snow in the pitch black though 4 feet of fresh powder. Made better time than me and he is 20 years older. I know the difference between those that have spent time in the field and those that just look up the info on Google. He is the real deal. The Kifaru shelter system reflects the designer’s extensive backcountry experience. The shelters are bigger to accommodate the wood stove and fuel. The thing has two doors my hex only one. It has a ton more reinforced tie downs and the bottom slopes to the ground at the perfect angle for wind resistance. Big number 10 zippers that will work even when covered in ice. A stronger cone. A clothes line. A stronger break down pole system.

On the hex in the photo. This is not my project. From what I know about it the person used a small Kifaru stove and a stove jack purchased from Ti-goat. I don't think anyone in warmer areas would need this modification.

Here is a photo of my 4-man and Golite hex. The pitch on the hex was sloppy as the shelter was new to me. The Tipi was pitched nice and tight.

Image

The Hex is a great value for the money and once mastered the shelter is roomy and strong. But it will never be a Kifaru tipi.
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"There's no such thing as bad weather, just inappropriate clothing"
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