Tent poles are the backbone of your tent. You can’t set up a tent without its structural support. Tent poles give tents their shape and strength. It is because of tent poles, you are able to build and stabilize your structure.

The best tent poles will be durable, lightweight, and flexible. These key features will ensure that your tent poles can safely hold up your tent to protect you and your gear. A tent pole needs to be able to bend into the supportive arc shape common in most tent designs. The best tent poles will ensure that they can bend but won’t snap. With our list of the 10 Best Tent Poles in 2018 you will have your tent up in no time, leaving you with more time to explore the great outdoors!

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How To Choose Tent Poles – Buying Guide

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When you are deciding which tent poles to buy, you will have to decide which tent pole design will best suit your needs and still be long-lasting. There are elements to each tent pole design that can enhance your temporary structure’s stability and your safety, while still providing durable and reliable use when camping in the great outdoors.

Function

The main function of tent poles is to stabilize your temporary outdoor structure. It does not matter if you have an existing structure or you are looking to build an entirely new one. Poles that would support a tarp or awning are different from poles that would support a tent. Tent poles and their pieces are narrower and thinner. The sections are joined by a small smooth covering, which creates an overlap for the piece to be connected.

If you are using tent poles to replace broken sections, you can buy a replacement kit. You must measure the old and new pieces in length, diameter, and thickness. By taking these measurements, you are guaranteed that your replacement kit will function with your old set of poles.

The type of pole used for stabilizing a tarp or awning has a fixed design. Rather, these sections are telescopic or in separate pieces that are connected to create one straight pole. These poles need to be placed on solid ground and many poles have an end with a rubber foot to provide extra grip.

Size

There are two important aspects to the size of your tent poles. The first is the size of the structure which you are wanting to support and the second is the actual size of your set of poles. If you are needing to fix or replace poles for a tent, your new tent poles need to fit your existing tent. If you are looking to support a tarp or awning, you will need to make sure your tent poles can extend to the height you want.

The other important aspect to size is how compact the poles can become when they are deconstructed and packed away. If you are going to use your poles for backpacking, the size of your tent poles can be extremely important to the plan of your trip. The best tent poles will be easy to transport.

Material

The most common or provided tent poles that come with a purchased tent are made of fiberglass, which is a strong material. But, fiberglass can be difficult to fix. You don’t have to fix fiberglass with fiberglass. You just have to ensure your replacement pole will match in length and the dimensions.

Aluminum and aluminum alloy are a strong material that is lighter than fiberglass. The high-end dome tents and lightweight tents will have tent poles made of aluminum alloy because they are often more reliable than fiberglass. You can’t really fix a damaged aluminum pole, but you can easily replace a broken section. Lastly, steel can be used because it is very durable. The downfall is that it is also very heavy.

Weight

Weight can be an important issue when it comes to what camping gear you are considering on packing with you. Depending on your trip, weight may or may not affect your decision on what to pack.

If you know that you are going to be carrying your gear on a backpacking trip, you will want the lightest set of poles or replacement kit. If you want to bring a replacement kit but are worried about the weight, you should look into purchasing smaller and shorter replacement tubes. They will create a bridge that covers the damage and connects the strong points together to ensure the pole won’t collapse. Some travelers are extremely weight conscious and may replace their pole set for a lighter set, whether or not there is damage present.

Fixing

Freestanding poles have the most important fixings. Tent poles have to be flexible to create the shape of the tent. A standalone pole will lock straight to support the weight of a tarp. You can adjust these poles by extending pieces and then locking them in place. These poles often have a push-button fastening, which can weaken or become difficult to click over time.

The fastening method isn’t the most important feature to consider, but for some, it may affect their decision. It is more important to consider the weight, material, and length of a pole before you worry about the fixings.

Type

There are two types of poles. The first is the tent pole, which is a flexible pole to stabilize the structure of your tent. The second is a standalone pole, which is used to stabilize a structure like a tarp or awning. A tent pole will not successfully support a tarp or awning and vice versa. A standalone pole will not have the design or flexibility require to support and shape a tent.

Strength

The strongest poles are going to be made of metal. It depends on the metal used, but most are durable. Aluminum and aluminum alloy are a good choice for a lightweight and durable material. Steel is the strongest, but also the heaviest. Fiberglass can be strong, but it is prone to breakage.

Durability

The durability of a tent or standalone pole is extremely important because it needs to be able to bear the weight of a structure to provide adequate support. The most durable poles will be made of metal. Metal can withstand a battering of outdoor use and still have the strength to support your structure. The best tent poles will be durable enough to withstand years of use, without breaking.

FAQs

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Q: Why should I use a tent pole?

A: You should use a tent pole because it will have the best design catered to the sole function of supporting your tent structure. You can think of them as the skeleton of your tent.

Q: How can I tell what type of tent pole I need?

A: The type of structure you are looking to support will dictate what type of pole you need. A tent needs to specifically have tent poles because they are flexible. A tarp or awning can be supported with a standalone pole, which is straight and extends to the height needed to lift the structure from the ground.

Q: Can I repair a tent pole?

A: Yes. There are many replacement kits available for purchase. Each kit has their own method for how to replace a broken tent pole. For an emergency repair, there are small metal splints that can be used to connect a pole temporarily, until you are able to find a replacement. It is best to remove a broken tent pole in its entirety with a replacement kit. Trying to repair a broken pole can make it less structurally sound and further weaken the piece.

Q: How do I know how much or how large a weight my poles can take?

A: Test them and use them! Although many tent poles come with manufacturer’s instructions which may give a weight capacity. Most poles should be able to easily support a tent or tarp. The important part is that you create enough tension to support the structure.

Remember that tent poles are built to support a fabric-like material, which is relatively light. You should not try to support heavier materials. As long as the poles are properly fixed together and placed on a solid and even surface, you should have no problem in supporting your structure.

Q: What’s the best material for a tent pole?

A: It is more important to consider what you are able or willing to carry. There really is no best material for a tent pole. A feature that can make a tent pole better is if it has anti-rust or anti-corrosion built into the design for outdoor use. The most suggested material for a tent pole is metal.

Globo Surf Overview

When it comes to your tent pole needs, finding the best tent poles is important. With these top rated tent poles you will have peace of mind that your outdoor adventure will be stress free. The best tent poles will support any structure, under any weather condition. If you know exactly what you need and what structure you want to build, you can save time and money by investing in the best tent poles.

Do you own one of the tent poles that made it onto our list? Let us know how it has worked for your outdoor needs in the comment’s section below.

Globo Surf Tent Poles Reviews

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My name is David Hamburg. I am an avid water sports fan who enjoys paddle boarding, surfing, scuba diving, and kite surfing. Anything with a board or chance I can get in the water I love! I am such a big fan I decided to start this website to review all my favorite products and some others. Hope you enjoy!