Vintage Canvas Shelter-Half Tent


This is a new tent in our “Recon” vintage military line, based on a popular Polish Army shelter-half tent form (AKA “The Polish Laavu”). The basic tent is made of two ‘shelter-halves’, each soldier would carry one of the sheets, which doubles as a full length rain poncho, and buttoned together they will create a small ‘teepee’-style tent for two, although in somewhat cramped fashion. The basic single-pole form is fantastic in it’s simplicity but a bit limited in use. We have added a full size awning and a second pole which makes the tent much more usable as a general camp tent, with space under the awning for cooking and keeping out of the weather, using with a campfire or firebox, as well as protecting the inside of the tent from the rain, which otherwise tends to invade the tent through the opening unless it is completely closed. This addition makes it much more like a classic ‘campfire tent‘ in terms of functionality and usage.

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The tent can be used in this basic form but we wanted to create a tarp-tent similar to a campfire tent and after much testing and design work have produced a solution with an extra set of poles, heavy duty pegs (the original ones with the shelter halves are very ineffective), three guy ropes and a large awning over the front and side using another of the original shelter-half canvases with some added attachment points, to transform the tent into a liveable space and to give protection from sun, rain and side winds:


So that the side wings can be fully adaptable in different positions we added antique brass press studs to fold back the awning to give a straight tarp edge to the front canopy, a riveted leather attachment point for the guy line to fix the canopy sheet securely in place on top of the pole, and modified the extra pole by adding a steel pin to hold the front guy rope in place.



The front canopy is designed so that it can be attached and positioned either to the left or right depending on wind direction and can be propped up at different heights to give a great deal of cover whilst retaining wide-angle views all around your camp spot, wherever that may be.

The end result really brings out the best in this classic vintage tent and makes it much more usable for many activities, a tent for living outdoors in rather than just ‘sheltering in place’. Suitable for 4 seasons, with a fire out in front in winter, and the heat from the fire reflecting around under the awning, and plenty of cover.

shelterhalf tent-under canopy



Some images from our recent blog post “Caledonian Forest Camp” showing the tent in use in the woods:


single pole tent campfire

Weight 5 kg
Dimensions 55 x 25 x 25 cm
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