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Whether you are are a prepper, survivalist, or just a camper, getting and keeping your survival tents and shelters in top shape should be a priority. After all, it would not be much for you to find out, in the middle of a storm, that you have a hole in your canvas or survival tarp.

So, it behooves you to use your spare time to time to check up on your existing camping equipment and if needed either fix or replace damaged equipment. Below are great tips on upkeep and repair of your bushcraft equipment.Survival Tents and Shelters

Survival Tents and Shelters

  1. Check your tent, tarp, and other canvas equip­ment by spreading them out on a clean, dry floor.
  2. Check the seams, corner reinforcements, grommets, or stake loops for any tears and then if needed re­stitch the above.
  3. Repairs can be easily made with a stout needle and waxed thread ( be sure to use a thimble to avoid injured fingers) or with an inexpensive sewing awl that carries its thread in the handle. These sewing awls have straight or curved needles for either canvas or leather, and they sew even heavy ma­terial easily and securely.
  4. Check tent seams, particularly along the ridge and at the corners. After any sewing, rub the new stitches with can­dle wax or paraffin for extra water­ proofing, or spray them with liquid waterproofing.
  5. Inspect the stitching around sewed-in grommets where tent poles go through the roof or eaves. If the tent grommets are loose or are pulling away from the material you can strengthen them with additional loops of thread. If loose grom­mets are of the pinched-on type applied with a machine, they can be replaced with a basic, inexpensive tent grommet kit.
  6. Only one size of grommet can be attached with each kit, so pick the size most used on your tent. Before installing such a grommet, you may have to sew in a new bit of canvas; the existing hole may have been stretched too far.
  7. If your tent has zippers that need repairs, you need to buy replacement zippers and lubricants which contain silicone.

Miscellaneous Bushcraft Gear Repair

  1. Check all zippers on sleeping bags, gun cases jackets, and any survival backpack.
  2. For your backpack, look for signs of loose stitching where shoulder straps are attached and be sure to check around buckles and D-rings. If necessary, reinforce the above with new stitching or rivets.
  3. If you use canvas cots, check see if the material is at­tached securely to the frame. A few new tacks, staples, or stitches in the right places can avoid a collapsed cot. Tight­en any loose legs, and touch up rusty or scraped spots on metal parts to either prevent or reduce any rust.
  4. Leather equipment such as boots, camera cases, and rifle slings should be inspected for signs of cracking where the material is folded or bent around any buckles or D-rings, or where there are any other attachments.  Treating these areas with a good leather preservative or saddle soap will keep the leather pliable and extend its life. Work the oil or soap into the cracks and along the edges. You can buy a little bottle of for such mending.
  5. Repair to sleeping bags should be made with, great care: repair the zippers, check the seams, and inspect tie cords for wear or any frayed ends.
  6. Check to see that no material is caught in the zipper, when you put the bag away.
  7. If you use an old fashioned pack basket, you can repair split rims or broken strips with staples or glue or by binding with soft copper. Such repairs not only prevent further splitting but also keep splinters from tearing other gear.
  8. Pack baskets and packsacks should be emptied of any crumbs or wood debris, and particularly the pockets of such gear should be cleaned out.
  9. Check the guy ropes to make sure the ends are whipped to prevent raveling.
  10. Untie any knots and check for weak spots and weak and worn places can be whipped by using a stout cord.


     Whether to repair or replace is dependent upon the situation. Obviously, if you don’t have the time or aptitude to learn how to sew and make the above simple repair, replacement is your best option. However, you may not be able to afford a new tent or other bushcraft equipment, or disaster may have struck. Therefore, you need to know how to do simple repair for your survival tents and shelters.