Old Eureka! drawtite help

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I have an old,canvas,2 man Eureka! drawtite tent with an aluminum frame from the 70s. I love this tent,but even with TLC, the canvas is getting weak. Anybody know where I might get replacement canvas? If not,does anyone make a tent with this great frame/suspension system?
Thanks, Turtle
 
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Local seamstress. Even here where even the choice of grocery stores is two (both owned by the same guy) we have a local who sews semi-industrial stuff. Snow-mobile seats, truck tarps(to a point) to quilts.
 
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DIY, I never sewed a stitch when I thought about downsizing my 8x10 canvas wall tent. My wife sews but she prefers to not get involved in my hobbies....and she told me hands off her machine.

I bought a used sewing machine for $35 and watched a few you tube videos, now my seams leave alot to be desired, but the machine had no problem sewing the light weight canvas.
Does your tent look like this? With a little practice, and the old tent for patterns, I would say it wouldn't be all that hard to sew one yourself.

Blanchard-Draw-Tite-tent-ha.jpg
 
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Hi Turtle, Much as I like old things, tents have evolved. I just wonder if you could ever have a chance to check out some of the proven newer tents, you might find something that in time you'd come to like as well.

Looking at the flyer that Robin has there, is that tent a single wall tent? Looking at the photo, that's how (more or less) my Timberline tents look just before the fly is placed over the pole/suspension system. Now I'm no engineer, but looking at the surface presented to the wind it would seem that such a tent would tend to catch the wind more than one than one with a smooth fly presented to the wind.

Best Wishes, Rob
 
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I have and have had several new high tech tents. Even though it is heavy,the suspension system makes a perfect,roomy shape. It is canvas with no fly needed. A fly is unnecessary on a good canvas tent and I wish a good modern self standing tent would be made of canvas. For canoe camping the weight wouldn't be as big an issue as backpacking. I have camped for weeks in primitive canvas tents and like them a lot. It has never leaked an has withstud some serious wind. I understand this type of tent was used on Mt Everest climb and polar expeditions so it must be good in the wind!
Turtle
 
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I'm not sure where you're located Turtle, but googling canvas repairs might show some results. There are canvas repair businesses for everything from awnings to boat covers. I bet it's not cheap, but might be worth a look.
 
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Turtle - I'm a few weeks from 80 and may be one of the Draw -Tites most continuous users in the United States. I have had the 2 man and 4 man tent for 52 years and still use them. Recently picked up a new, unused 3 man which will go to a grandson. I used these tents yearly on canoe trips floating rivers, lakes, etc. They were also used on numerous camping trips in all kinds of terrain, mountains, desserts, sea shores, etc., In torrential rains, below zero blizzards, blistering heat , heavy wet snows, very strong winds.

No, the 2 man is not a backpacking tent per se but for a two man overnight or trail hiking, the load can be split up. For canoe camping, the four man tent with two canoes and four persons is no problem. Its features far out weigh its weight, pun not intended.

The super light aficionados will scoff, but then they lack real experience with the Draw-Tite.. They like their very light metal or fiberglass poles, but they break (I speak from experience) And the new age fabrics deteriorate from UV, and smell, and not breathe, and are a challenge to set up in a wind, and leak with out a fly (generally a real nuisance), and require guy lines which trip one in the night, and often have colors which are an assault on the senses in our natural outdoors. I have had them, used them enough to realize that the Draw-Tite is of superior design and its fabric will stand up to considerable exposure to the elements. The only thing that one must do is thoroughly dry them before packing them away. Their aluminum poles were made by Alcoa from a special alloy,
and they do not break. The tents that went to the Himalayas were designs from the original Draw-Tite , but had extra reinforcements and other fabrics.

On to your inquiry for repairs and replacement of what you call canvas. While Eureka was making the Draw-Tite, they used a special combed poplin made from cotton with a high count of threads. According to my Eureka archival brochures, they used a variety of names for the fabric. They also said some were 6.5 ounces per square yard and some said 7 ounces.. I have been in contact with the factory about fabric availability. This is what they told me. The cotton fabric they used was from mills in the United States which no longer operate. Whether someone has horded some bolts is any one's guess.

I learned not to loan my tents to just anyone. Last year my 4 man came back with a broken (metal) zipper and torn netting. The complete replacement of zippers and netting is a major job. I found a Montana tent maker than did the complete replacement. Cost? $230. Hate to tell friends they have to put a deposit on my tent before borrowing it. To replicate your 2 man today (factoring in inflation) would cost over $1,100. These were premium tents back 50 years ago.

Back to fabric for replacement or repair. In England are mills which still make a fabric called Ventile. It comes in a variety of weights and colors. You need to have a thick wallet to purchase it by the yard. Just click on to find out about Ventile. The Brits still use Ventile for survival suits in water.when their pilots dtich.
If I were 40 years younger, I would use your tent as a pattern (as suggested by a post above) and get some seamstress to sew it up for you. You can amortize the costs over the next 50 years. Remember, the Draw-Tite was made for canoe camping. None better!

The word "old" seems to have a pejorative connotation today I haven't seen any improvement yet for a tent used by canoeists. As an aside, all these young heroes who play with their "smart phones" will likely have carpal thumb surgery before they die.

John
 
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The tent hasn't failed yet. maybe I should just use it till it does. that would really make me sad though. At 66 I doubt it will last my lifetime. But then again it's just sitting on the shelf. Decisions!
Turtle
 
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How long do you think you have left? My tents simply have not worn out. The carrying bags did, but then I made bags of really heavy canvas. I would predict your zipper will go first. I use black plastic sheeting (a little bit smaller than the tent's foot print under the floor) and allow no shoes worn inside. You may be able to rejuvenate the material somewhat. Attention to little details like broken threads and little tears can prolong your tent's life. From experience, as you age your use will diminish. If you didn't have teenage sons and their buddies using it, it should be OK for many years ahead. I'm too old for the Ventile edition, but if I were your age, I would give it some thought. Even an improvised fly of some sort will reduce the UV damage.

John
 
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How much are you willing to spend on it? There is one on Ebay right now for $200, it may be in better shape than yours.
Now you have my interest in one and I may snag it up. I will let you have first dibs. From the advertisement it looks as if the original price was $106. the one on Ebay starts bidding at $200, not bad. Let me know if anybody on here is interested and I wont bid, I don't need another tent but I can find a use for it.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Eureka-Draw-...item1a01e65174

And now another one popped up on Ebay, buy it now for $100+shipping.
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Vintage-can...5b4b84f&pid=100033&rk=4&rkt=4&sd=261728832482
 
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Mine is different than these. It has no fly. It is like the ones in the above add.
Turtle
 
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It sold. I didn't think it would last long at that price. I bought the other one, but I have yet to open the box, my yard is newly seeded and I cannot set it up. The wife would probably yell at me for buying another tent, women just don't understand.
 
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You mean a brand new one or a good shape vintage one? You may be able to have someone sew one with Silnylon or Dyneema, but it would cost a pretty penny. There are some vintage ones which come up on EBAY from time to time. Here are two;

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Rare-1959-...523280?hash=item3b075bbd90:g:q9AAAOSwMf1Zoeff

https://www.ebay.com/itm/12-X-9-BLA...598379?hash=item280a4e582b:g:FesAAOSwo6lWHqno

That four man has been listed for a year now, the price is still the same as a year ago.
What size are you looking for? I have a two man which is in good shape, I can't decide if i want to sell it or keep it.
 
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The larger tent would be my preference but to buy a 40 year old cotton canvas tent sight unseen plus $150 shipping to AK......with a bent pole.....not quite exciting!
There were a few "nylon" Draw Tites made but I havn't seen one listed any where.
 
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I have an old(1970) 2 man trawtite tent. ither than being heavy,mI love it. Mine is easy to set up and love the smell.
 
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