Was coming back from REI when I stopped in walmart. Was looking around and noticed they were getting rid of their fabric department. I have read stories of people finding silnylon for around $1 a yard or other ripstop fabric so I went back and checked. There was a bolt of ripstop-looking fabric in the scrap heap labeled 'unknown fabric',edges weren't frayed....Figured I'd take a shot, bought the whole thing and took it home.
Set it up with some draped over a cup with a little pocket, poured some water in the pocket and let it sit over night. Morning...no water leaked through! So I assume this is some kind of treated ripstop, its fairly thin..not as thin as my thermarest stuff sack though, ie doesn't feel like tissue paper. It's green/grey in color. The best part is I got it for 25cents a yard! Sadly there was only 10 yards but i figure thats enough to do some projects with it.
Just need a few pointers in working with the stuff. I want to make a tarp for days when it rains to cook under and double as a vesibule for my tent, possibly a groundcloth as well. Now as far as sewing this stuff, can I just use standard thread as if it were a normal cloth fabric? Any special stitching style? If I were to go with guidewire type setup, should i do grommets, webbing, or other?
Also whats the best cordage to keep a tarp tensioned properly, I guess I'm looking for some bungee like shock cord?
I've been using the search and checking out the portal for materials, so i'll probably find my answers there. Just wanted to share my find.
I just found a good deal on ebay - but I'l going to head to wallyworld to see what they have. I want to make a tarp and some stuff sacks. I've seen several websites on sewing with ripstop. Here's a few:
In a nearby fabric shop, I was lucky to find end of stock siliconized ripstop, different feel and weight, one of which is hardly heavier than cuben, also white, so white...1,5 euro/m, now my place is packed with heaps of "future projects"....and I don't know where to start.
Loc: East Texas Piney Woods
Narf, To answer a few of your specific questions:
Use polyester thread, not cotton. It won't rot.
I prefer webbing instead of grommets. Grommets seem to want to tear out for me. The webbing can be easily reinforced.
I use a straight stitch and a fairly tight stitch length. Sewing this stuff is takes patience as it is slicker than you know what. When doing flat-felled seams, I use lots of pins (quilter pins with the big heads) and go slow. If I'm doing a rolled hem though, I can generally free hand it and keep it relatively straight.
I've made two cat-cut tarps and a Ray-way quilt and stuff sack so I'm still 'practicing'.
Loc: Menlo Park, CA/Sierra Nevada
I've never really lucked out with silnylon at the local walmart - have found some other cool fabrics though. To add to Tango's post, use polyester thread and I prefer webbing for the tie outs. I use a straight stitch, and many times will double stitch for strength. With the tie outs, it helps to add a small piece of extra fabric or webbing to strengthen them. Check out the make your own gear projects page here at TLB, and you'll find a lot of instruction. Lastly, if your stuff really is sil-nylon, its gonna be slippery and a pain to sew. I'd suggest sewing a few stuffsacks to practice with it before embarking on something bigger.
I cruised by Wal-Mart yesterday to take a look at their nylon selection. They had a lot of it but I am not sure that any of it was "silnylon". I have several tarps made of silnylon and the stuff they had did not feel any thing like what I have. I have the 1.1. oz. non-breathable and have it made into a 10x 12 tarp that we use for a large vestibule in front of our tent. I still don't think that any of the stuff at Wal-Mart felt like silnylon to me. However, it was $1.00 per yard though...Hope that helps...Happy Trekking...sabre11004...
The first step that you take will be of those that get you there !!!!! <img src="/forums/images/graemlins/crazy.gif" alt="" />
The first step that you take will be one of those that get you there 1!!!!!
I've ordered from Noah Lamport before, and everything went fine. 10 yds is a BUNCH of fabric, and they have to ship on a 60" roll, so be prepared for a little sticker shock when it comes to shipping. Still comes out cheaper per yard that everywhere else I've found.