How to Assemble a Cabin Tent

How to Assemble a Cabin Tent
A cabin tent offers a roomy sleeping area for the family that loves to camp. Generally speaking, cabin tents feature either three-pole truss or four-pole umbrella frames. Overnight campers are more likely to rely on the truss frame for added stability; umbrella frames are more suited for day-use sun shelters, but some manufacturers also use this design for their overnight tents. Although basic cabin tents share a similar design and method of assembly, some feature extras, such as dividers or attached awnings.


Difficulty: Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Tarp
  • Stakes
  • Mallet
  • Poles
Step 1
Locate a flat area on which to place the tent. Remove sticks, rocks, pine cones and other debris from the tent site. Spread out a tarp onto the ground where the tent will sit.
Step 2
Lay out the tent and choose in which direction to open the door. In the case of windy conditions, angle the tent so that the end faces the wind.
Step 3
Stake down the tent--stretching out the tent's floor area without overly tightening it--by threading the stakes through the stake loops; angle the stakes toward the tent. Drive the stakes into the ground with the mallet.
Step 4
Stretch out the shock-corded roof poles. Find the long, down-curved poles--depending on the cabin tent's design, you may have two long poles and two shorter ones or three poles of the same size--and thread them through the roof-pole sleeves.

Cross the poles one over the other for cabin tents with two longer poles and then insert the two shorter poles into the sleeves, one on each end; for the three-pole design, insert each pole into a roof-pole sleeve.
Step 5
Bring together the shock-corded center brace poles. Stretch out the end brace poles next. Depending on tent design, you may work with either four center and end brace poles each or two center and four end brace poles. Attach the upper ends of the center brace poles to the end points of the roof poles and secure at the bottom; thread the end brace poles through the pole sleeves and secure. Secure the brace poles according to the manufacturer's design.

Tips & Warnings

Spread out a tarp that is slightly smaller than the size of the tent's floor to protect the structure from damage done by sticks or rocks that you overlooked when clearing the tent site. Choose a smaller size tarp to prevent rain from pooling on the fabric around the tent.
If the center brace poles come equipped with a locking handle, be sure to tightly squeeze it to lock the pole in place. For tents equipped with squeeze pins, securely fasten the bottoms of the center and/or end brace poles inside these devices.

Article Written By Sylvia Cochran

Based in the Los Angeles area, Sylvia Cochran is a seasoned freelance writer focusing on home and garden, travel and parenting articles. Her work has appeared in "Families Online Magazine" and assorted print and Internet publications.

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