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Subject Topic: Bell Tents - advice needed please! Post Reply Post New Topic
Message posted by HEJC72 on 26/9/2014 at 5:37pm
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HEJC72
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I am in the process of changing careers and am currently training to be a complementary therapist - reflexology, aromatherapy and body massage along with Reiki and crystal therapy.

My plan is to be a mobile therapist but I would also like to travel the country offering my services at festivals.
I originally planned to convert a mini bus into a mobile therapy unit but having spoken to a couple of festival organisers, they do not allow motor vehicles into the main arenas (only to tow trailers in and then the vehicles have to be removed) so that wouldn't work as a business idea!

So, Plan B is to invest in a bell tent and use that as a treatment room.
I have seen this done at a festival and it looked fab!
I have wanted a bell tent for a while but know nothing about them and don't know anyone who owns one.

So, my questions are:
What size tent should I be looking at - 3m? 4m? 5m?
Is there much difference between the makes? If so, what should I be looking for?
Should I get a tent with a wooden or a metal central support pole or doesn't it make any difference?

The tent will need to house my therapy couch (approx 2.3m x 1m) with space for me to stand or sit next to it, along with a stool for me and one for my client and a small table/trolley to hold the bits and pieces needed for a treatment.

Any help or advice would be much appreciated as I am entering unfamiliar territory!!
Thanks in advance xx

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Helen xx
Mini Mad Mum

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Message posted by Blue Stripey Kitten on 27/9/2014 at 10:42am
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What a nice idea. I find being in our bell very relaxing anyway, so it would make for a lovely atmosphere.

Considering the size of your couch, I would probably go for a 5m so you have plenty of room to move around it. A 3m would def be too small, a 4m might be ok. If you can go somewhere and see the different sizes up you could get a better idea of what would suit you.

We have a soulpad but I think the different makes are all pretty similar really. You can get some with heavier weight canvas but then obviously it gets a bit erm....heavier

I like our metal pole as it's folding so it easy to take in but a wooden one might look more natural. Either will do them job very well.

Sorry, I'm not being much help am I?! I would def see if there are any tents local to you that you could go & see though.

And good luck

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May '14 - Kelling Heath - Norfolk
July '14 - Trewan Hall - Cornwall
July '14 - Umberleigh - Devon
August '14 - Waren - Northumberland
August '14 - Newmill - Perthshire
August '14 - Sands - Gairloch
August '14 - Sunnyside Croft, Arisaig
August '14 - Rothiemurchus - Aviemore

Message posted by HEJC72 on 27/9/2014 at 10:58am
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Thanks for your comments which I have found very helpful.
So, I need to be looking at a 4m or 5m tent - I will see if there is anywhere near me that sells them or has a display so I can see them for real!

Am I right in thinking that a ZIG would give me the best of both worlds - zipped in place if it is cold or wet and unzipped with sides rolled up in hot and sunny weather?

How long does it take to put a bell tent up and will a short, fat, unfit woman be able to manage this on her own?!

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Helen xx
Mini Mad Mum

Message posted by Blue Stripey Kitten on 27/9/2014 at 11:20am
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Lol. I can put ours up in about 20 mins and I fit both of those descriptions! The more you do it, the quicker you'll get at it. But it is really, really easy as there are only 2 poles.

We have a ZIG and yes, it's very easy and versatile. We can have sides unzipped and rolled up in just a few minutes.

-------------
May '14 - Kelling Heath - Norfolk
July '14 - Trewan Hall - Cornwall
July '14 - Umberleigh - Devon
August '14 - Waren - Northumberland
August '14 - Newmill - Perthshire
August '14 - Sands - Gairloch
August '14 - Sunnyside Croft, Arisaig
August '14 - Rothiemurchus - Aviemore

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Message posted by Blue Stripey Kitten on 27/9/2014 at 11:22am
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Mind you, those 20 minutes don't include the 20 mins choosing the pitch and which way I want the door to face, or the 2 hours of putting everything in it and putting bunting & fairy lights up!

-------------
May '14 - Kelling Heath - Norfolk
July '14 - Trewan Hall - Cornwall
July '14 - Umberleigh - Devon
August '14 - Waren - Northumberland
August '14 - Newmill - Perthshire
August '14 - Sands - Gairloch
August '14 - Sunnyside Croft, Arisaig
August '14 - Rothiemurchus - Aviemore

Message posted by HEJC72 on 27/9/2014 at 11:31am
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Thanks - they are quicker to erect than I thought xxx
It goes without saying that I would have bunting and fairy lights!

Time for me to start looking at some bell tents and saving some pennies so I can afford one!

-------------
Helen xx
Mini Mad Mum

Message posted by alisonme on 27/9/2014 at 5:36pm
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I looked at Bell Tent UK, Soulpad and Canvas Camp. I was looking for a 3m, which these three do. I've ordered from Canvas Camp, so we'll see. There are others though, Canvas and Cast, BCT, Lotus Bell.... There are quite a lot out there really, especially if you want something a bit bigger. If you have a look at the dimensions on some of the sites you could do a couple of scale drawings to see what you can fit in. Happy hunting!

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Alison

Two wrongs don't make a right, but three lefts do. 😜

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Message posted by topcat36 on 27/9/2014 at 6:11pm
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Hi , I have a 5m ZIG bell which I got from camping under the stars a small company, tommy who makes yurts etc he doesn't make the bells tho . he is based in Yorkshire and is very nice and helpful
I would say a 5m zig would be ideal you can fit 2 double airbeds in no problem, also an inner tent can be fitted and u still have good living space.   There are slight variations amongst the bells, guy ropes , sliders etc. one or two do have a heavier canvas weight but unless u are going to have it up for months at a time the normal weight is fine. I have a metal pole I might get a wooden one but if you are going to use lights etc then the chances are you will cover the pole in all sorts of stuff so u wont see it . I find google images is a good way of getting an idea oh how it would work . I am on facebook you can find me from my profile here .

Post last edited on 27/09/2014 18:31:53

Message posted by P-T Family on 27/9/2014 at 6:34pm
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You could also try glamping campsites if there is nowhere close by to view tents. Apparently there is quite a different in headroom between the 4m and 5m and not sure about door height. Hardest thing I find with ours is lifting it in the bag but It's dead easy to put up. You might want to invest in a trolley or something if being able to park near it is an issue. ZIGs are also easier for cleaning and drying. Can recommend Karma Canvas.

Message posted by geoffprinter on 27/9/2014 at 8:11pm
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Hope this gives you some idea of room inside. This is our 5metre with zig from Karma canvas. I can confirm its easy to pitch, my wife can do it on her own.



Message posted by topcat36 on 27/9/2014 at 9:28pm
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I'd know those orange rugs anywhere

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Message posted by P-T Family on 28/9/2014 at 1:00am
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Was the bedding for me! Beautiful tent!

Message posted by HEJC72 on 28/9/2014 at 5:24pm
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Gorgeous!
I think I will go for a 5m bell as it will give me plenty of space for my couch.
Plus, I may then look at selling some of my other tents and use the bell for camping trips as well as the business!

-------------
Helen xx
Mini Mad Mum

Message posted by Glamper Wendy on 28/9/2014 at 8:42pm
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Quote: Originally posted by topcat36 on 27/9/2014
I'd know those orange rugs anywhere



Good old Aldis..lol

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Camping Tip #26: In an emergency, a drawstring from a parka hood can be used to strangle a snoring tent friend...or husband!!


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