View Full Version : Forty penny nail

12 Man
01-24-2005, 07:31 AM
Can you please tell me what a forty penny nail is.Is that like an eavesthrough nail.About 8 inches long and .5 in diameter.Have an old carpentry book and they don't call them that.

01-24-2005, 08:05 AM
Nail of that size are also called log spikes and resemble common nails. Spikes are classed by length. Most that I have seen in that length are closer to 3/8" in diameter. Old-time and country hardware stores may carry these, WalMart won't. They are good tent pins for solid, rocky soil, but a bit heavy.

01-24-2005, 08:33 AM
A 40-penny nail is also called a 40D, it measures 5" long and just under 1/4" shank diameter.

12 Man
01-24-2005, 09:51 AM
And these will hold a tipi in frozen ground?Have any of you set a tipi up on a frozen lake.I recall an old post and Patrick saying something about you could drive a forty penny nail right in the ice.This may give a new twist to ice fishing.I must patiently wait for my tipi now and it will be a long delivery time.

01-24-2005, 11:14 AM
I'm not sure about "pennysize" but I purchase 12" spikes(resemble reg. nails) from Home Depot. I have a set of them for setting up the 12 man on old gravel bars and glacial moraine even though they add quite a bit of weight.....cost $.54 ea. Very heavy duty.


01-24-2005, 03:25 PM
Driving spikes into ice works on the principle of ice pitons - the friction of the blow melts the ice which then freezes instantly, holding the thing in place. Warning, even in extreme cold direct exposure to sunlight may cause the metal to warm up enough to melt out as a lot of glacier climbers have found out to their dismay.

Spikes will also work on softer soil, but it is best to avoid direct pull. A length of 3" sapling along the peg loops can shift the pull sideways. You can "staple" the sapling in place with 2 crossing spikes, or leave stub branches along one side and weight with rock. Exact method depends on the site. Tipis offer a different problem being round. The spikes may not have enough surface area to hold in soft soil.

01-24-2005, 08:21 PM
12 man--

Shu described the 40 penny nail accurately. Yes, they hold perfectly in frozen ground--even with our largest tipis. Yes, they work perfectly driven into ice. (Sunshine doesn't faze them--perhaps because they are too small for the sun to get a purchase on). For removal, a tiny set of pliers (magnesium, for weight, or any Leatherman style devise) to twist the nail back and forth as you pull upward is a very good idea.

01-24-2005, 10:33 PM
Anyone have an idea where to get some? I've looked at a few places like Home Depot but haven't found any that aren't ribbed.

A friend discovered that the ribbed spikes are near impossible to get out. The regular spikes are pretty simple to get out if you twirl them in a small circular motion as you pull up - they pop right out.

01-24-2005, 11:06 PM
Try Menard's (if you are in MN like your tag says) or a local hardware store if you still have one. They aren't always in the same place as the rest of the nails--sometimes they are with the landscaping supplies.

01-25-2005, 04:06 AM
What about gutter nails? They are slightly longer than 40 penny, but weigh signifficantly less and are made of aluminum. I got them temporarily for my poncho, but was planning on using them with my paratipi when I get the money. Do you know of any reason not to use these?


01-25-2005, 04:29 AM
I use them all the time--in clay, hardpan, rocky soil, and frozen dirt--but never in ice. They are nearly indestructable, I haven't bent one yet. Since they are ringshank, they can be a b*&( to get back out.

Dave R.
01-25-2005, 05:26 AM
On the Hilleberg website I saw several types of pegs includung titianium ones, spiffy, expensive, but very light, and probably worth every penny if you really want to tweak and lighten your tipi load....check the main page for accessories for other good and cheaper pegs....I use nails from the hardware store....they really saved me this fall. I was camping in the rain in an area that had an inch or two of top soil and a layer of hard red shale underneath...I used the nails to crack the shale, then I inserted my dura pegs...with out the nails, I would have been sunk..


main accessory page http://www.hilleberg.com/Catalog/spare_parts_-_accessories_42737_products.htm


01-25-2005, 06:13 AM
A little general discussion: NOTHING holds as well as the Durapegs, if you can use them. You can't in frozen earth or water; nails, or other metal devices come in real handy then. Dave points out that a single largish metal "starter" can be used along with Durapegs. If you ever acquire lighter-than-Durapegs DO NOT discard your Durapegs--they hold the very best in muddy conditions with heavy winds.

01-28-2005, 09:23 AM
I'll take another look at Menard's. Neither they nor Fleet Farm had anything that wasn't shanked - but I could have been looking in the wrong area. No one at either place had anything either. I'll keep looking.