Tent Showcase: Vango Tigris 800 XL
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9/10 from 3 reviews
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3 Reviews of the Tigris 800 XL
By: OldRex Reason: I own(ed) one Made in: 2012 Rating: Date: 09/09/2012
As promised from my test-pitch review back in April, here is my in-field review of the tent (never thought it would take this long, but hey-ho.)
What a fab, fab tent. We stayed at a notoriously windy campsite, sure enough it blew during the night but the tent was remarkably stable and un-flappy for this style. The exception to this was the side extension (see photos). The part which extends over the top of the main tent did flap a bit, but that is not the main tent's fault.
The living area is luxurious, I love the big windows. There was no condensation, the ample ventilation worked well (although the gusty conditions would have helped. As before, I had no problems with the porch brow pole which owners of the pre-2012 800 reported.
Cannot comment on waterproofing as I had dry weather, but I am sure it will be good. All the seams are well taped.
The tent is easy to pitch, but as before I think 20 mins is optimistic. Maybe 30 mins to get the main body of the tent up without the bedrooms or a footprint. Also I was being cautious as I did not want to break anything by being over-eager.
The thing that keeps me smiling about this tent is the well-thought out design. Guy-retainers to help pitching. Darker bedrooms which actually did help to reduce morning light (but 'lights-out' is a grossly inaccurate). Reflective trim on the tent. The design of the cable entry point. The low-level vents. The easy-to use cleats on the guys. The list just goes on.
One word of caution. This is a BIG tent. Handle with care when pitching or striking in windy conditions or it will turn into a huge hang-glider. Get the upwind side pegged first and unpegged last, try to keep it all low to the ground as you manhandle it, to maintain the smallest area to the wind.
PS, sorry Imogensmum, but your tent is a 2011 800, not the 2012 800XL. I do hope you were not sold it as an 800XL.
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By: Imogensmum Reason: I own(ed) one Made in: 2011 Rating: Date: 09/06/2012
We bought a pre-loved, used only once Vango Tigris 800XL last month and used it for the first time this week on our first ever family camping trip.
The tent is large - around 7m x 3.5m - so I had to phone and check that the campsite would take it. But we'd wanted a large tent so we could fit all of our kit in it, so that was a minor inconvenience.
We pitched the tent in a major downpour and, despite having only done it once before, it went up quickly and without incident. From unpacking it out of the boot to being able to stand inside and shelter from the rain took around 20 minutes. Not bad to say that we are new to camping.
The tent pitches quickly with five poles which slot through colour-coded tubes. Then it's a case of pegging from one end and securing the guy ropes - which there are plenty off. At least they're bright orange so less of a trip-hazard than white or black ones.
The tent is spacious and has full standing height throughout. We put up all of the inner bedrooms - two separate two man rooms and a four-man room that converts to 2x2-man with a screen. This meant our children each had a separate bedroom (to save arguments) and we had plenty of space in the larger room.
It also meant that when our eldest was scared by the thunderstorms we just picked up her airbed and sleeping bag and brought her in with us. This flexibility was one of the reasons I favoured the Tigris' bedroom layout.
If you don't want to put all of the bedrooms up you can use the large door on one end of the tent. Instead we used both of the side doors which gave us lots of flexibility.
There's a good amount of living space - we had a large camp kitchen, table and four chairs up all at once and there was enough space to move around. We took the table and chairs down when not in use and just sat on the floor on a picnic rug instead.
Other features include an electric hook-up slot - although only one - vents on the bedroom doors which we used for peeping at the children to check they were okay, but also allowed good air circulation, and vents over the windows which you can prop open.
We also had the porch, although we couldn't figure out how to fit it. I suspect it goes over the door on the end instead of one of the side doors, so more research needed on that front. If that's the case I'll be disappointed with the lack of flexibility on that as we will almost always need all of the bedrooms up to accommodate us, rendering the porch useless.
One thing we did struggle with was putting the frame into the little sticky-out shelter over one of the side doors. We eventually wrestled it in, but when my husband tried to put it in as we pitched the damp tent in our garden it ripped the fabric because it was such a tight fit. Luckily it's just the side panel of that sticky-out bit, not the tent itself. Perhaps we'll just not put it up again.
We weathered a number of thunderstorms and some very high winds during our two-night trip and the tent stood up well. It did billow in the wind, but I expect that's more about our novice pitching abilities than the tent itself. We certainly had no leaks despite a number of torrential downpours throughout our break.
This model is meant to have Vango's Lights Out sleeping rooms, but it seemed to be lighter in the tent than it was outside. It was certainly darker than some of the others we went in at various camping shops, but it was so light that our son asked us to turn the light off at bedtime, despite there not being one on! We'll be investigating whether we can dye the fabric to keep more of the light out as this will become quite an issue for us and our small children on longer stays.
Overall I'd say this is a good quality tent, a great size for families and quick and easy to pitch and take down. It will be better once campsites catch up with the fact that a lot of people want some space when camping and that means bigger tents.
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By: OldRex Reason: I own(ed) one Made in: 2012 Rating: Date: 03/04/2012
Just bought this and did a test run in the back garden. It took us an hour to put the tent up - mostly because the thing is so big we didn't have enough room either side of the tent to work the poles, and had to feed them in segment by segment - we also found the poles kept snagging in their channels when being fed through.
Build quality seems as good as with the 2011 Tigris 800, no dodgy seams or glueing found and it survived my kids charging around in between the pods. It is much brighter inside than other vis-a-vis designs thanks to the huge knee-to-head height windows, which is the reason I bought this over the others. Each large square window has a clever inside zip-up curtain which can stow into a pocket at it's base. The triangular windows on the end have curtains which are held in place by toggles at the bottom corners and can be rolled up.
Because of the lower pole at one end, the 2+2 person bedroom pod only fits that end, but colour-coded toggles help with locating the pods correctly. The 'lights-out' moniker given to the pods is optimistic.
Only the lower end of the tent has a pelmet, and the optional carpet does not extend under the pod that end. There are high-level vents at each end, one is a guy-supported flap, the other uses a stiffened brow and velcro-strut arrangement. There are similarly stiffened low level vents beneath each square side window.
I had no problem fitting the porch brow pole - this attaches to receiving holes in the plastic side pole clips. I think previous models used receiving pockets for the brow pole ends. The new full length storm porch is a great improvement.
The tent comes in a single cavity hold-all, not the saddle-style pack of previous models. We could not get it all to fit back in but leaving the poles & pegs out fixed this. I will be buying additional v-channel pegs for the guys - the pin pegs supplied are rubbish and I have already bent one.
I only marked the tent down to 9 because of the pin pegs, undersize bag, and I would prefer zip-up curtains on the triangular end windows. All in all I am very pleased with the purchase and am busily planning our first trip away in it! Will review again after that.
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The NEW Tigris 800XL is a major update of the well loved Tigris. The new higher front pole creates a full height front door, which in addition to the 2 side doors, makes for great flexibility. The addition of large windows in the living area make it lighter and brighter than ever before.
... there may be more info on their website
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