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Tent Showcase: Blacks Good Companion Standard

Tent and Awning Showcase Index  >  Other  >  Blacks Good Companion Standard Reviews

Current Model?
RRP on date added:
Bedroom inners:
Living area groundsheet:
Pitching Style:
3  (more 3 berth tents)
10.00 KG
Fully Sewn-in
Inner first
Average User Rating:
9.6/10 from 10 reviews

Viewed: 12925 times

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10 Reviews of the Blacks Good Companion Standard

By: Kwacker  Reason: I've used one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 21/11/2015

I slept in one at Easter in 1963. It was a comfortable tent but it had a metal toothed zip which allowed a cold draight through. I think towards the end of the 70s they started fitting plastic zips which were a lot more draught proof. There were rumours that condensation formed on the metal teeth and froze n sub zero temperatures although I have never met anyone who experienced this

I have a collection of Good Companions tents and fly sheets

There is an oddity in the name. It sometimes appears as Good Companion and sometimes as Good Companions on the tents. I am not certain which is correct. Blacks catalogues were known as the Good Companions catalogue which suggests Good Companion is correct as there is only one tent

The design shown was introduced at some time in the 1950s. Prior to that there were 4 preceding designs. There were a choice of three prior to the Second World War. The GC Solo, the GC Duo and the GC Trio. I think in the very early 50s they produced a GC with a roof a bit like the Itisa. After that they settled on the design that carried on until about 1980. All of the designs used a single pole

In the 50s and at least some of the 60s tents were available with loose or fitted groundsheet and upright or angle poles. The angle poles greatly improved room in the tent and the tent stability.

During their production they were available in Egyptian cotton which is the more usual material. However in the 60s they were also made in Terylene which was the ICI brand name for polyester. In the 70s they were also made in nylon

The fly sheets were generally bought separately and came in 2 forms. Standard which covered the tent and extended which was supported on a ridge from the top of the tent poles to a vertical tent pole at th front. This resulted in a large porch

In 1967 Blacks bought Benjamin Egingtons and transferred the making of their small tents to their Sidcup factory. The poles radically increased in weight and bulk which was a pity as those supplied with the Scottish tents were quite adequate. The larger diameter and heavier poles increased bulk and weight so made them less practical for backpacking
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By: Hamandanne  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 16/09/2014

My parents bought our Standard as an ex display tent in 1967 for the 3 of us to go to Austria.

I have had it since 1970's and have used it fairly regularly the last time being the Great Dorset Steam fair this year - 2014.

It is getting a little fragile and I have repaired a couple of tears (which don't leak!)and as a precaution use a 1970's small nylon flysheet under the extended one.

Having the extended flysheet is a great boon as it means you have a kitchen/washroom in the dry and not in the inner tent.

Hope it lasts another few decades!
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By: Brazil  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 20/04/2014

I have a two man Good Companions tent which I purchased in 1962. It has a loose groundsheet a flysheet and A poles. Also a hanging arrangement which enables the guy ropes to be adjusted from inside the tent. In the past I have camped all over the UK including the outer Hebrides in sun gales and temps. Of minus 12 degrees. Sadly my camping days are now over and my tent now only gets a blow in the garden once a year. The memories however will last forever. Happy camping to all of you.
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By: Jodyvines  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 04/02/2014

I still have my fathers Good Companion which has been used intensely for many years. It is very much loved by myself and all those who I camp with but unfortunately last year the Outer Fly tore in immense winds. I will never throw it away but I am desperately seeking a repair or replacement outer fly canopy if anyone has any suggestions.
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By: JamesSA  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 27/12/2012

My life long tent - 45 years old and still going strong.

Camped everywhere in UK and Europe. In sunshine and gale force 5 storms.

Today, as I post this, it's pitched in South Africa. I've just handed it on to my son. He's as proud as punch.

You can see him and the tent in the uploaded pictures.

December 2012. Cape Town.
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By: Hightopper  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 26/11/2012

I got my Black's Good Companion Standard about 1966 and used it for ages. I got a flysheet for it but only able to use it with a central pole. I cant find angle poles anywhere to buy, so thought of having a friend make me some. If anyone out there could give me the essential dimensions - length, diameter of nesting poles and details of the hanger- I would be extremely grateful.
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By: Agusta  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 23/11/2010

My Father bought a Standard back in the 70’s for our trips to North Wales, it was a great tent and survived bad weather when other on the same site in the Ogwen Valley did not; I loved it as a small boy.

I kept the tent and used it while as a Scout Leader, I made the mistake of lending it to someone and the ripped the flysheet so I told the to keep it while in a huff. A few years ago I got hold of another Good Companions Standard and remembering there were three in the range of Good Companions I looked of the Minor and Major to join the Standard; both of these tents are as good as the Standard (see picture).

These tents are great and I do wish they were still made, as I believe there would be a market for them.
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By: Tipsywitch  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 21/09/2010

I had one of these in the late 1970s and used it for about 7 years running when two of us went cycle touring around France. No lightweight gear around in those days, so it was quite a weight to lug about, but the tent was fantastic so well worth it. Didn't have a flysheet but it still kept me comfortable and dry through heavy rainstorms and extreme winds. Made the mistake of lending it to a 'friend' who said they wanted to go camping - and they sold it! Couple of years ago I managed to acquire another one (with a flysheet this time) - A lucky find as it only cost £20 (don't think they realised what a treasure they were parting with). It's in pristine condition, so there will be plenty years of camping ahead.
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By: Denningr  Reason: I own(ed) one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 06/09/2010

Bought mine in 1979. Never really used it till 2001, it was completely fresh and new condition and is now living in the Rockies! Went to BC Kootenay Rockies in July 2010 and the orange red color fit in nicely in the bush, not like a glaring nylon neon beacon. Quite refined and subdued.

Best money I ever spent.80 quid or so. It is quality workmanship. Not something you would find these days, it will last several generations if cared for!
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By: Andy1983  Reason: I've used one  Made in: 2001   Rating:   Date: 02/08/2010

Fantastic tent, unusual design now, and not available since the mid 70's. It was originally first sold around 1935

These tents suspend from a single A frame, and have a kind of pyramid appearance. They're made of cotton.

My example is now over 40 years old and still going strong, I used it as recently as July 2010. It stands up well to rain, and I'm told they were fine in storms, although wanting to preserve this tent for as long as possible, I like to use it on valley sites, not really wanting to push it as it'd be a shame to spoil it.

I wish someone would start making them again! I'd definitely get another. Keep an eye on ebay but dont expect to get one for less than £150, the best examples fetching £250+. The fly sheet was optional, I've got one and would say if rains likely, you would probably want it on.
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Manufacturer's Description

Blacks of Greenock http://www.blacksofgreenock.co.uk

Blacks of Greenock produced The Good Companions back in the 1960s and 1970s. They were made from orange Egyptian cotton and consist of an inner and a flysheet. Early models had a single pole in the middle of the tent, later models had an ‘A’ frame

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