Bought a bunch of ripstop nylon to make rain gear and a poncho tarp. Material is very nice but I realized it is NOT waterproof! The waterproofing sprays that are sold only add a bit of water repellent to the outside and they don't last very long, none are sure proof if you get caught in a downpour or much good for water collection.
Found lots of videos on a super easy and very effective DIY method using regular clear silicon gel and mineral spirits. It liquefies and embeds the fabric with silicon which makes it TRULY waterproof, then dries quickly. Some people take a regular king sized sheet and treat the whole thing in a bucket to make a large and inexpensive tent/tarp.
From a survival/prepping perspective having a large tarp on hand to collect rain water for drinking (it does not need purification if it is caught in clean containers) is important, and I would think this silicon method would be suitable for rain water. There are also more complicated "natural methods" using linseed oil and turpentine and such but I wouldn't want to use that for rain water, plus I think it would be highly flammable.
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