Coating ripstop with silicon

Posted by: chaz

Coating ripstop with silicon - 02/11/08 11:38 AM

Hi all, I went to wally world and picked up some green rip stop nylon and built a rainfly for my homemade hammock. To water proof the ripstop, I used a plastic container and poured in about a pint of Klean strip brand oderless mineral sprits and then added about a cup of Dow silicone 999A . I mixed until it was very liquid and totally clear. I then poured it on the tarp I had setup taught and low enough to work around all sides. I used a plastic squeege and worked fast. It left a few clear lines but the results are acceptable (to me). The tarp dried within a few hours and I put the water hose on it. It beaded and didn' t leak. It's forcast to rain tonight and I will leave it up and get under it to test. Wish I could post pics of it but there's not a lot to see. I based the tarp on the Clark unit and copied dimensions from their web site.
Posted by: Earthling

Re: Coating ripstop with silicon - 02/12/08 11:31 AM

Sounds like you did quite a bit of work there Chaz. Be glad to hear and see the results after a few trips. Did you weigh before and after you treated the tarp?
Posted by: chaz

Re: Coating ripstop with silicon - 02/12/08 05:09 PM

Heck no. The only scale in this house is a bathroom scale. I'm sure it weighs a little more. This afternoon it was pouring rain and I went out and got under it and couldn't find moisture anywhere. The temps just dropped to around freezing and when I went out to retrieve it, it was coated with ice. It's in the garage. I think it was a lot of work for the results vs. buying something. I love build stuff and have spent a lot of time making mistakes and wasting materials. If I fail I usually get it right the next time. But what fun.
Posted by: BrianKelly

Re: Coating ripstop with silicon - 02/13/08 09:35 AM

I was wondering what I am going to do with some narrower (44" or less) 1.1 ripstop that I picked up a while ago. I thought I was going to use it for a quilt or jacket, but the water repellency was pretty poor. I may just sew it up some how and then try your coating method.

How were the fumes? Was this an outside only project, or can a well ventilated garage work?

Posted by: chaz

Re: Coating ripstop with silicon - 02/17/08 05:47 AM

I applied the coating outside but you can easily do it in a garage. The oderless mineral sprits had very little detectable fumes but always have ventelation. You could thin the mixture a bit using a consistancy thinner than syrup. You'll get good results by stretching the fabric taught and low. I used a 6" wide squeege (plastic) but if you can find one wider that might work better. It won't cost much to experiment a little to get your technique down before starting on the main piece.
hope this helps...