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Tent Fastener Types and Uses

Tent Fastener Types and Uses

While some tent styles such as the Pinnacle Series High Peak Frame Tent may forgo them all together, tent fasteners are a staple component of most frame installations. On West Coast Style Frames (such as those used by Celina), fasteners are the pins that are inserted through holes drilled in the frame tubing. Holes in the tubing and fittings (corners, crowns, side tees, etc.) align to keep all of the pieces in the right formation to allow the correct tent top size to be supported.

R Pins

The humble R Pin is the baseline for frame tent assembly. Having a distinctive “R” shape helps the fastener to hug to the tubing and keep everything from just slipping apart; the curve in the metal snaps around the outer tubing once the pin portion of the fastener is fed into the holes in the frame tubing. When installed, it is important to remember that the ends of the pins will extend past the tubing, and so should be inserted so that they point away from any tent fabric to reduce the chance of causing scrapes, pin holes, or other damage to tent tops and sidewalls.

Pin and Bail

Pin and Bail fasteners are the least often recognized when mentioned out of the tenting community.  The “pin” portion is the straight metal part of the fastener, making the “bail” the curved or bent wire portion which is made to pivot on the end of the pin. Once inserted, the bail wraps around the tent tubing and is secured to the other end of the pin. This creates better security for the fastener. Celina deals with three main types of Pin and Bail:

Standard Pin and Bail

A curved bail is how the Standard Pin and Bail is most quickly identified. This lets the fastener hug the frame tubing, and is the style used on standard frame tents.

Square Pin and Bail

As the name suggests, the bail on a Square Pin and Bail has two corners and no curved. Square P&B are mostly saved for frames that aren’t standard round tubing, such as tents using double tube supports for added strength. The end of the pin is inserted into a loop at the end of the bail once it is wrapped around the tent tubing.

Pinnacle Pin and Bail

Our most specialized style, Pinnacle Pin and Bail fasteners are the fastening method used to secure the mast of Pinnacle Series High Peak Frame Tents to the cross cables that hold the frame together. The pin is inserted into the base of the mast, at which point the mast is installed and the bail wraps underneath the crossing of the tent’s support cables. This keeps both the cables together and the mast in place during installations.

Bolt and Nut

The most tedious to install is also the safest. The Bolt and Nut fastener attaches just how you would suppose – the bolt is placed through the holes in the tubing and the nut is screwed onto the end, securing all of the pieces together. The main drawback to using bolts as fasteners comes from the time it takes to install them. Each location would require time to tighten the nuts against the tubing, extending your installing far longer than any other fastener type.


No matter which style you prefer, fasteners are the one piece of tent hardware that you simply can’t do without. Most of Celina’s tent packages come standard with the appropriate fastener for standard installation. Don’t let this deter you if you want to invest in fasteners with a little more oomph in them; should your installation be in an area more prone to harsh weather or longer installation times, it can never hurt upgrade your fastening method.

All of Celina’s fasteners (not to mention all other parts for tents) are available for online ordering 24/7. Orders ship (or are ready to ship) is as little as 72 hours, and can even be picked up from our warehouse if you have the time to give us a visit. We’ll be waiting!