Sub-200g MYOG Silpoly Flat Tarp

Originally posted on Reddit.

backyard test

As my second MYOG project (after an Apex quilt - posted a few weeks ago), I chose a flat silpoly tarp.

Dimensions: 280x140 cm (110x55 in)

Weight: 194.2 g (including lines and line-loks)

Design intentions

  • simple and fast to make
  • just big enough for a 196 cm (6’5’’) guy
  • light, but functional
  • not super storm-proof, still good enough for short weekend trips on local trails in fair weather
  • no ridge-line seam -> no seam sealing and easier sewing
  • no cat cut (easier to make)
  • cheap (no DCF)
  • usable with tent poles (I don’t currently use trekking poles)


This build is heavily inspired by u/noemazor’s silpoly tarp. The main differences are:

  • no bug net (might add later)
  • no taper towards the end, because I ordered the non-XL silpoly by mistake, so it’s already very narrow (about 140 cm)
  • glued, not sewn reinforcements
  • mini line-loks instead of the usual ones (still not sure which is better)
  • a bit longer (to accommodate my height)

A lot of the details and sewing techniques are also based on videos by Bruce from Nature Calls Backpacking. This tarp features his signature sail-style tieouts.


  • Overall happy with the results, I will continue using it over this summer
  • I would make it a little bit bigger, both in width and length, to decrease sleeping pad positioning anxiety and have more space for my backpack and gear.
  • Silpoly is a good material, would use again.
  • I’m not sure if the mini Line-loks are the best option, I like the other ones used in the original tarp, but I don’t like that they are sewed on permanently (can’t be easily replaced).
  • I’m happy with the glued reinforcements, but I’m not sure if they will hold up long-term. I might also sew them on and seam seal them.
  • My imperfect gluing left a lot of shiny glue marks around the reinforcements. Looks odd, completely functional.
  • The 1.3mm Dyneema lines are super strong and work well with the line-loks, but they tangle easily in my backpack, not sure what to do about it.
  • My 114 cm SMD tent poles work well, but they are a bit too long.
  • It’s lighter than I expected and packs very small.


I’m from Europe, so ordering from the ever popular RSBTR doesn’t really make sense. A lot of their materials are sold by adventurexpert.com (Slovenia), where I ordered all the materials (excluding the glue):

  • 3 m of 20D Silpoly Ripstop (I’m pretty sure this is the same as RSBTR 1.1 oz Silpoly)
  • Gütermann Mara 70 thread (used with a 90/14 universal Schmetz needle)
  • 1 m of Grosgrain ribbon - 10mm (just enough, would maybe order more)
  • 15 m of 1.3mm Dyneema with polyester cover (did not use all of it)
  • 9 x Mini Line-Lok tensioner
  • Seam Grip + Sil glue

Sewing instructions

I tried to make it as simple as possible, so it can be easily reproduced

  1. Take the 3 m of fabric and cut off a 15 cm strip at one end.
  2. From this strip, cut 3 15cm sections, so you have 3 15x15 cm squares.
  3. Cut the squares in half -> 6 triangles for reinforcement.
  4. Glue 4 triangles to the corners of the fabric and the remaining 2 to the middle on both sides (ridgeline reinforcement).
  5. Let the glue dry for a couple of hours.
  6. Sew a rolled hem around the whole rectangle fabric (3mm stitch length).
  7. Sew on the 9 grosgrain tieouts (using the Nature Calls method).

The first real test on a weekend trip.

First I cut out 6 reinforcements for the corners and ridgeline tieouts.

Reinforcements glued to the main fabric using the Seam Grip glue. I let it dry overnight.

Sewing a rolled hem around the edges.

Sewing on the tieout grosgrain. This was more difficult than it seemed, but I got the hang of it by the end.

Adding lines with mini line-loks.