How to Make a Camping Tent from Scratch: Step By Step Guide

When you think of camping, the first thing that comes to your mind is the place where you will rest, i.e., tents. Many campers who love camping learn how to make camping a tent from scratch to make camping more fun.

If you are a new camper, making your own tent from scratch will enhance your fun and knowledge about camping.

Although there are many other choices available for shelter while camping such as Sleeping bags, Shelter vans, Ready-Made tents but sleeping in something made by yourself is quite nice and comfortable.

Learning how to make a camping tent from scratch can help in dire situations like thunderstorms or other situations.

And in case if you forget your sleeping shelter due to some problems then making your own tent can help you a lot. You can also make a great influence on your camping mates.

How to Make a Camping Tent from Scratch

You can easily make a camping tent as there are many tips available on how to make a camping tent from scratch. The making of a tent generally revolves around the availability of materials and environmental conditions. Making your own tent can help you bond better with your teammates, and it can also be fun.

If you go on a camping trip, the first thing you need to do is to set up your own tent for shelter. The tent can protect you from wild insects and bugs and can also shelter you at night.

Suppose you are going on a camping trip and forgot your sleeping wears and then you can make a camping tent with the limited materials you have, and you can also use some materials available in the surroundings.

If you learn how to build your own tent, it will help you in camping and other adventure sports like trekking, hiking, etc. Below given are some methods to make your own tent along with some notable points that you have to keep in your mind while building a tent.

If you plan on living in a tent permanently, you may be interested in learning how to do that.

How to Set the Frame for your Tent

You must follow the steps given below to set the frame of the tent.

Step 1: You need very few things to build a tent. You must ensure that you carry these necessary things while going camping as you will need them for making your tent. Things needed for making a tent are:

  • A strong rope
  • Tarpaulin
  • Rocks
  • Stakes/poles 

Step 2: You need to find a good place to set up your tent. Find a place that is near two trees and tie a rope between the trees. But the gap between the two trees should be such that it matches the length of your tarpaulin. You should build a tent at a lower level as building a tent at a higher level might make it cold.

  • You must pay attention to the weather while making a tent. If the weather looks rainy, you must make your tent on a levelled ground rather than building it on steep ground. It may result in water logging in your tent.
  • You should never build a tent under weak trees as they may fall on your tent during the night and may injure you.

Step 3: Make the ground a little damp, it will prevent dust from entering your tent. It will keep the tarpaulin attached to the ground. It is said that a damp ground can attach things to itself easily.

Step 4: You must use a strong rope to tie the knots between the trees. You should tie the rope around the tree a few times to ensure the safety of your tent. The rope should be tied high enough to make sure that your tent does not crumple. If you tie the rope too high ten the tarpaulin walls may not be able to reach the ground. So, the height of the rope must be chosen carefully.

How to Secure the Floor

Step 1: Check the ground before sleeping on it. You must clear the ground carefully in case you might get pricked. All the twigs and stones should be cleaned carefully.

Step 2: If you are too scared to sleep on the bare ground because of the twigs and small rocks, you can also use a tarpaulin to make the flooring of the tent.

Step 3: To secure the flooring, either you can place large rocks on it or use stakes to place the tarp’s corners in the ground.

  • Don’t push the stakes too deep in the ground as you will need to remove them while making the walls of your tent.
  • You can also use heavy rocks in case you don’t have the stakes to push down the tarpaulin in the ground.

How to Construct the Walls of the Tent

Step 1: To construct the walls of the tent, fling the tarp over the rope that you have tied to the tree. The tarpaulin should hang equally and smoothly on the rope. If the tarpaulin does not reach the ground or barely touches it, then you have to lower the knots of the rope.

Step 2: Now, you have to remove the stakes or stones you have placed on the tent’s flooring. Then you have to line up the holes of both tarpaulins and then hammer the stakes again in the ground. You have to hammer the stakes in each corner again. If you have safeguarded the flooring with heavy rocks, you can lift the rocks and secure the walls below the flooring with the same tarp.

Step 3: If you are worried that your tent might get flooded due to sudden rain, you can use some rocks to make a boundary around your tent. This will protect your tent from rain and dirt. You can also use other materials like logs, sticks to build the boundary. If you have built your tent on a slope, then you can dig out some trenches to prevent your tent from getting flooded by rainwater.

How to Make a Pyramid-Shaped Tent

This method is used to build a flexible tent that can be used in many ways. If you have any hiking poles, you can use them. It is better if they are extendable. It is easy to use multifunctional things when you are camping.

Firstly, spread the tarpaulin on the ground. Then measure the diameter of the sticks/poles and cut holes in every corner. Ensure that the holes are a little smaller than the diameter that you have measured to make posts safer. After making holes, cut the rope in four equal parts and thread them together but don’t tie them for now.

When you have chosen a beautiful location for your tent, place the post in the middle, this will also serve as the center of your tarpaulin. To make sure that the post is safe and stable, you can slightly dig it in the ground. In case you don’t have a hammer, you can also use a rock. This will be the height of your tent.

After making sure that the post is safe and stable, you can lay down your tarpaulin. Then pull out each corner of the tarpaulin in the diagonal direction to the post and ground. Don’t use too much force as it may lead to a change in the position of the center post. Place small sticks at every corner and force them into the ground. The tent will take a look at the pyramid.

Now that your tent has taken a shape go and tie the corners with your sticks. You can also use some heavy rocks to put weight on the edges so that your cover is safer and does not get blown away by strong winds. If you have an extra tarpaulin, you can use it to make your tent’s flooring to avoid sleeping on wet ground.

Learn More: There are many ways to How To Make Tent Camping Comfortable for you to live in. See how you can do this.

How to Make a Triangular-Shaped Tent

It has a triangular cross-section frame. Although this type of tent cannot protect you from clitters, it can surely provide you with some basic protection. This is one of the most chosen methods to make a tent from scratch. You must keep in mind that to make a tent from this method, you must choose a woody location like an area in the forest.

Find a location for the tent. To make this tent, you need two trees that are around 10 feet apart. You need to tie a rope between two trees. The rope should be big so that there is no knot in between. Tie the rope in such a way that it has the same height from both sides. The range from the ground resolves around the length of your tarpaulin, and later you need to place it over the top and then pull it out to establish a triangle shape. In case of doubt, a height around a third of the length of your tarpaulin should be fine.

Make sure to tie all the knots properly and tightly. The ropes should be parallel to the ground. You should make the knots firmly, and the rope should also be strong to prevent the tent from collapsing during the night. The knots should be made in hammock knots.

After making sure that you have tied all the knots properly, throw the tarpaulin over the rope. Make sure that the cover is equal on both sides. In case you have more than one cover, use your lengthiest cover for this part of tent making. If the cover is not able to reach the ground, then you have to make some changes as you have tied the ropes too high. Pull out the corners and make a hole in each corner with the help of a backpacking knife.

Then use sticks as poles to secure them in the ground. You can also use some rocks to secure your corners. For the flooring of the tent, we suggest that you use a thick tarpaulin.

DIY Tent 

DIY tents can benefit you in many ways. The equipment used to make DIY tents are cheap and easily available. Although it cannot protect you from bugs and insects, it can be easily assembled.

1. Choose a location for your tent. Make sure that your tent is horizontal to the wind, and on a levelled ground. Make the area clean by removing all the sticks and rocks in case you got pricked by them while sleeping.

2. Spread the tarpaulin on the ground.

3. Use poles/sticks to make your tent. Ensure that the backside of your tent is towards the bad weather so that the front side is protected. Make sure that the poles are laid deep in the ground so that they are more stable.

4. Bring two front corners together and then lift where they meet in the center. Attach the two corners in the middle, making a slit opening. It will look like a pyramid.

5. You can also try extending your hiking pole and place it under the center, creating a triangular shape.

6. To make sure that the pole does not fall, wrap it around the cord. This will make sure that it is securely attached.

7. To safeguard yourself from mosquitoes and bugs, you can try tying a rope to the front flap and attaching it to the inside.

8. Finally, spread the tarpaulin on the floor inside to prevent yourself from wet grass. You can also use the extra rope to gain some extra support for your tent.

Final Words

Now you are well versed in how to make a camping tent from scratch. If you are going out camping with your family, then none of these tents is ideal for it. You might have to use ready-made tents. But if you are camping in a small number, then you can make your own tent using any of the above-mentioned methods.

We generally recommend using good quality tarpaulin while making your own tent.

Making your own tent from scratch is not that hard as it seems. You just need to follow the method properly and use the proper equipment required. Everyone should try this as it is both fun and enjoyable. You can also try imparting this knowledge to your kids and make it a fun task for them.

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