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The tent that pitches itself!

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July 8, 2006

Image Gallery (15 images)

July 9, 2006 Pitching a tent isn’t hard, but it is one of those things that seems to encounter endless problems for newbies. It’s invariably done when it’s going dark, when you’re dog tired and its almost always done in a less-than-ideal place – like policemen, good camping spots are plentiful when they’re not needed and scarce when they are desperately required due to the onset of darkness or inclement weather or both. French sporting products company Decathlon set itself an unlikely goal when it decided to create a tent that pitches itself – the concept was that such a tent would enable many more people to enjoy the wonders of camping and nature. It also had to be incredibly light and impossibly small and lack nothing in terms of function or creature comforts, oh, … and easily folded back into nothingness. Anyway, they did it! You unclip the tent, throw it in the air, and it completely assembles itself before it lands on the ground. It fits two people, folds up again in 15 seconds, weighs 3.5 kg and costs EU49 (US$63).

Sold under Decathlon’s Quechua brand, the tent has proven to be as popular as it is effective - in under a year on the market, the 2SECONDS tent has enabled Quechua to grow 78% in the number of tents sold and 51% in turnover.

The 2SECONDS secret is the fibreglass spring hoops that enable it to erect itself instantly. The use of fibreglass helps to reduce the diameter of the hoop and means it can be folded when up. The idea was to pre-assemble the different elements (room, double roof, hoops) to simplify the construction as much as possible. As a result, once the user throws the tent in the air and it lands assembled, the only work required is to put the 6 tent pegs in the ground.

Weighing in at a featherweight 3.5 kilograms, it’s a real tent, with all the logical technical features such as:

    Coated double roof with waterproof seams for excellent watertightness. Anti-condensation "breathing" room. Extra strong polyester fabric. Enough room for two people (1.45m by 2.45m).

The light weight was enabled by some very clever design (video coming soon) – the tent has no packaging (the cover acts as a carrying bag) and as the hoops and various parts of the tent are builtin, the design has also been subsequently found to be a huge advantage as lost parts have been eliminated.

Note that there are now several TWOSECONDS tents designed for various purposes – please check the size, specs and pricing to get the one that suits you.

Quechua was the language of the Incan empire. The Quechua brand is named after the South American people which lives among the peaks of the Andes – the brand aspires to the hardiness, resourcefulness and courage against the odds which defines this noble people. The Quechua design centre is situated at the foot of Mont Blanc and most of the images in this article were taken there. The company develops products for skiing, hiking, snowboarding, climbing and adventure sports, where weight paramount – things like a 700 gram sleeping bag or a one kilogram rucksack.

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About the Author
Mike Hanlon Mike grew up thinking he would become a mathematician, accidentally started motorcycle racing, got a job writing road tests for a motorcycle magazine while at university, and became a writer. As a travelling photojournalist during his early career, his work was published in a dozen languages across 20+ countries. He went on to edit or manage over 50 print publications, with target audiences ranging from pensioners to plumbers, many different sports, many car and motorcycle magazines, with many more in the fields of communication - narrow subject magazines on topics such as advertising, marketing, visual communications, design, presentation and direct marketing. Then came the internet and Mike managed internet projects for Australia's largest multimedia company, Telstra.com.au (Australia's largest Telco), Seek.com.au (Australia's largest employment site), top100.com.au, hitwise.com, and a dozen other internet start-ups before founding Gizmag in 2002. Now he writes and thinks. All articles by Mike Hanlon
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3 Comments

Gives new meaning to \"Sproing! Tentpole!\"

Gregg Eshelman

Ahhh, too bad. Can\'t buy them any more because the CPSC declared they were too flammable. Decathlon-USA did a recall on them and quit the US market.

http://www.decathlon-usa.com/recalls.html

Gregg Eshelman

Yes, out of business in the USA .. happened in 2006 : failed flammability tests . .. ALL of their tents. It\'s nice to be warm and toasty in a tent .. .but there are limits!!

Good designs.. tho i fail to understand why they didnt merely change the materials!!

tkj
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