My wife and I have got the Hexamid Solo Plus with netting. We only got it recently so we've only had a few nights in it. My impression so far is that it is a well-thought out shelter, and sooooo light. I don't live in the UK, however, and I'm not sure just how well suited it is to some of the UK's weather, at least as a tent replacement. It is best pitched a few inches off the ground so there is a risk of wind-driven rain getting under. That said, the Solo Plus would give you plenty of room to keep out of the way of splash if used as a solo tent. Moreover, if you're looking at it as a tarp replacement, it will give you better protection than almost all tarps.
It's worth knowing that Joe at ZPacks will do all sorts of customisations that aren't mentioned on the website. And, unlike many cottage manufacturors, he will accept returns on custom jobs (not that returns are very practical from the UK).
A groundsheet is, of course, essential with the hexamid. If you use it inside the netting, it doesn't have to be a proper bathtub as the netting will keep it up at the sides. A piece of cheap polycryo will do. Personally, I alsouse a piece under the netting as well, but that's partly because weoften camp on dirty ground. In total, our groundsheets come to about 125g.
I don't think rain coming under is too much of a problem as a solo tent. With 2 people, however, there is less room to get out of the way. For our use, where rain is only an occasional risk, it's quite easy to lower the tent to keep out the splashing. (Or so I think. We haven't had it in rain yet, but I have tried different pitches under a hose pipe.) However, in the UK, where you might get days of rain on end, that might not be ideal.
I've also read comments elsewhere from a lot of people in the UK who don't like net inners because of the draughts. The Hexamid would not be for them. I think it's very good if you want something that gives you more protection from rain, wind and insects than a standard tarp and if you are prepared for a bit more of an open experience than with a two skin tent. Given that you don't need a bivvy with it, the weight works out very well even compared to a tarp.
One other thing, it's very quick and easy to erect.
Mike, you don't have to have an all netting floor with the Hexamid. Joe will do all sorts of customisations that aren't on the website, and one of those is to add a sewn in groundsheet. I don't think it would save much weight, though.
Old Boy. Are you thinking of the solo or the solo plus? The plus will give better protection and it is slightly taller for little weight gain. It costs more, though.
For a solo shelter, I wouldn't worry too much about splash. I wouldn't suggest replacing the netting with cuben. It will increase condensation, but worse, there will be nowhere for any condensation that runs down the backwall to escape. In bad conditions, you can always put your waterproof over the netting if you have a problem. I would certainly recommend the optional beak, though. Joe is very good about answering emails if you have any questions.
At 31g (about an ounce) heavier, the extra width of the solo plus is a reasonable luxury if you don't mind the extra cost. You need to factor 2 more pegs into the weightas well, though.
You probably already know this, but their are loads of 'grades' of Cuben Fiber. Z Packs uses a lighter grade than some other manufacturers. I'm not trying to put you off, as Z Packs are a great company, but just thought you should be aware of that, if you weren't already. Most of their customers will use the shelter in settled US weather, or below the treeline. I had looked at some of their shelters too, but thought a heavier grade would be better for the typical exposed and windy pitches that i would want to use it in. Probably my worries are unfounded.
From what I've read, Mike, the grade of cuben used in the Hexamid is reckoned to be about the same strength as silnylon and the heavier grade considerably stronger. However, it is less abrasion resistant (not such a problem in a tent).
It wouldn't be my choice for a Scottish summit or exposed moor either. (I'd get a cuben Trailstar for that too.) I think very few tents are up to such conditions.
I don't think we're in disagreement, Mike. This wouldn't be my choice in a Scottish gale either - no tent this light would be, though.
Incidentally, I have heard of people having the Hexamid made in the heavier grade of cuben. Personally, I chose to stick with the lighter grade and we take a different tent if we're expecting really bad weather.
maybe a forwarding company might help, below a few threads
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