IFAI news

IFAI launches online community CONNECT

June 18, 2021

Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has launched CONNECT by IFAI, an online community that will facilitate valuable networking among industry peers and support industry-wide conversations. “One of many things the last year has taught us is the importance of connection and networking. With this in mind, we’re excited to launch our newest IFAI member benefit, CONNECT …

Conference

Tools, Tips and Tricks submissions open

June 17, 2021

Organizers of the Marine Fabricators Conference 2022, being held Jan. 13–15, 2022, at the Wild Dunes Resort, Isle of Palms, S.C., are seeking tips, how-to ideas and DIY techniques that benefit the marine fabricator industry. Qualified entries appear in Marine Fabricator magazine, and prizes for first, second and third place are presented at the Awards …

Industry News

US Senate passes legislation regarding Section 301 tariffs

June 16, 2021

The U.S. Senate has passed comprehensive legislation that establishes a new exclusion process for products impacted by the Section 301 tariffs on imports from China and reinstates exclusions for products that previously received an exclusion, according to the National Marine Manufacturer’s Association website. The comprehensive legislation, the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act (S.1260), supports American …

Events

St. Louis Boat & Sportshow announces new 2022 dates

June 15, 2021

The 2022 Progressive® Insurance St. Louis Boat & Sportshow®, presented by Discover Boating, originally scheduled from Jan. 13-16, 2022, has been moved to Feb. 3-6, 2022, to accommodate another event at America’s Center Convention Complex. For more information, visit www.stlouisboatshow.com.

IFAI news

IFAI CONNECT online forum now live

June 14, 2021

Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has launched CONNECT, an online platform that enables members to connect, find answers and learn from fellow members. This new initiative from IFAI is intended to facilitate valuable networking with industry peers. For more information and to join this new online community, click here.

Events

Call for entries to 2021 IBEX Innovation Awards

June 11, 2021

New product entries are now being accepted through August 13, 2021, for the IBEX Innovation Awards program as part of this year’s event taking place September 28-30 in Tampa, Fla. The IBEX Innovation Awards showcase outstanding marine product development to the recreational boating industry and beyond. The program, managed by the National Marine Manufacturers Association …

Events

Marine Accessory Pavilion exhibit spots at ICAST available

June 10, 2021

Exhibition spots in the Marine Accessories Pavilion (MAP) at ICAST 2021 are available. ICAST 2021 takes place July 20-23 in Orlando, Fla. According to organizers, it is the world’s largest sportfishing trade show and is a showcase for the latest innovations in fishing gear, accessories and apparel. The MAP is located between the two main …

Industry News

ABYC to publish largest standards manual to date

June 9, 2021

The American Boat & Yacht Council (ABYC), the nonprofit organization that develops the global voluntary safety standards for the design, construction, maintenance and repair of recreational boats, is set to publish its largest supplement ever of the Standards and Technical Information Reports for Small Craft. With more than 75 percent of revised documents included as …

Expo News

Grants available to North Carolina small businesses to exhibit at IFAI Expo 2021

June 8, 2021

Eligible North Carolina small businesses can take advantage of a program allowing for reimbursement of booth expenses related to exhibiting at IFAI Expo 2021, Nov. 2–4, 2021, at the Music City Center in Nashville, Tenn. The Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC) announced another round of funding for the North Carolina State Trade Expansion …

Industry News

TowBoatUS predicts a busy boating season

June 3, 2021

TowBoatUS, the on-water towing service that gets boats home after they break down or run aground, is expecting a very busy 2021 summer boating season, according to the BoatingIndustry magazine website. TowBoatUS forecasts the volume of requests from boaters for routine, non-emergency on-water help–a traditional barometer of boating activity–will be up 20 percent over last …

Expo News

Grants available to North Carolina small businesses to exhibit at IFAI Expo 2021

June 8, 2021

Eligible North Carolina small businesses can take advantage of a program allowing for reimbursement of booth expenses related to exhibiting at IFAI Expo 2021, Nov. 2–4, 2021, at the Music City Center in Nashville, Tenn. The Economic Development Partnership of North Carolina (EDPNC) announced another round of funding for the North Carolina State Trade Expansion …

Expo News

Registration is open for IFAI Expo 2021

May 10, 2021

Registration is open for IFAI Expo 2021. IFAI Expo celebrates the 100th anniversary of the show this November, and you won’t want to miss it! After a long hiatus of in-person events, this year’s show is the perfect place to reconnect with your industry. Register now to get the Early Bird rate! Early Bird rates end …

Conference

Call for IFAI Expo 2021 speakers, topic ideas

January 5, 2021

IFAI Expo 2021 organizers are looking for presentation topic ideas and interested speakers for Expo 2021, which will be held Nov. 1–4, 2021, at the Music City Center in Nashville, Tenn. Expo organizers are looking for speakers and topic ideas for 50-minute classroom education sessions and 25-minute campfire education sessions. Submissions are being accepted for …

Expo News

Standard for active illumination developed in Europe

November 16, 2020

In a session at IFAI Virtual Expo 2020, “Smart Textiles Standardization, Active Illumination,” Dr. Jan Beringer, senior scientific expert Hohenstein Group, explained the new standard for active illumination that will soon be implemented in European Union countries.  Organizations worked together to develop the standards. It is notable, he said that both textile and electronics industries …

Expo News

Rapid prototyping = faster market launch

November 16, 2020

A presentation at IFAI Virtual Expo 2020, titled, “Rapid Prototyping and Textile Product Development” urged attendees to use “sticks and glue … whatever method you have to get your idea out there.” The presenter, Dr. Andre West, director of the Zeis Textiles Extension (ZTE), Wilson College of Textiles, NC State University, may not have meant …

Expo News

Textile industry leaders call for policy changes to support U.S. production of PPE

November 13, 2020

The U.S. textile industry has stepped up to meet the demand for face masks, medical gowns, wipes and other products necessary to combat the coronavirus pandemic, but it needs policy changes from Washington so that the U.S. is not caught off-guard again in a future crisis, according to association leaders speaking at Industrial Fabrics Association …

Expo News

The larger issues in respiratory protection

November 12, 2020

Dr. Bryran Ormond, assistant professor, Wilson College of Textiles, NC State explained respiratory protection in an “Ask an Expert” session with Jing Liang, Medical PPE Consulting LLC. Dr. Ormand has typically worked in the area of chemical and biological protective equipment, but with the onslaught of the pandemic, began to focus on respiratory protection generally, …

Expo News

Rodgers: Textiles are the “T” in STEM

November 11, 2020

How do you create a channel from research to application? How do you create a pathway toward understanding complex human problems across supply chains and market sectors? STEM—a curriculum based on teaching science, technology, engineering and math—has branched out from basic chemistry and biology and physics classes, into collaborative efforts, including textiles, according to Stephanie …

Expo News

Partnerships in smart textile products

November 11, 2020

The second week of IFAI’s Virtual Expo 2020 advanced textiles educational sessions began with a presentation that illustrated the importance of collaboration. “Smart textiles for healthcare and wellbeing: a collaborative approach” had three presenters speaking from different perspectives, but with one, unified message about reaching across geographical distance and areas of expertise to create successful …

Expo News

Welding technology for your business

November 11, 2020

During IFAI Virtual Expo 2020, Jeff Sponseller, executive vice president of sales and marketing at Miller Weldmaster, led a campfire session titled “How to Select the Correct Welding Technology for Your Business.” “Essentially a good weld means that the fabric will tear before the weld does,” says Sponseller. Many types of different materials can be …

Feature

Tools of the Trade: Marine fabricators share their favorites

May 1, 2021

We asked marine fabricators to tell us about the “must-have” tools in their shop. The variety and creativity of submissions we received told us what we already knew—fabricators are a resourceful and innovative lot! By Cathy Broberg Hercules 1575 foam cutter with Bosch blade “A good quality foam cutter makes shop life so much easier,” …

Feature

Managing difficult clients

May 1, 2021

Marine fabricators discuss their best forms of defense By Michelle Miron Most businesses have encountered these people at least once: impossible-to-please customers who make life miserable for everyone who has to work with them. Maybe they are disrespectful to you and your employees. Maybe they demand price breaks where none are due. Or perhaps they …

Feature

2021 Premier Product Showcase

May 1, 2021

High-quality products to help you create durable, attractive and successful projects. For this feature, we asked our contributors to send us information about their high-performing products. The product information was submitted by the participating manufacturers and suppliers by the established deadline. The products are organized into three categories: Fabric, Film, & Foam; Equipment, Tools & …

Feature

Does co-entrepreneurship lead to more divorce?

April 1, 2021

By Michelle Miron Are divorce rates higher among couples that co-own a business? Consider the 24/7 togetherness, the disagreements over business decisions, the juggling of work and family, and the worries over the bottom line. How could that not translate into marital strife? Chandler and Charlene Clark, co-owners of Signature CanvasMakers in Hampton, Va., say …

Feature

2021 MFA Fabrication Excellence Awards

March 1, 2021

Sponsored by the Marine Fabricators Association (MFA), the Fabrication Excellence Awards contest is designed to recognize excellence in marine fabrication. The entries are judged by a panel of certified marine professionals. Awards of Excellence and Outstanding Achievement Awards are given in each category. The MFA recognizes two Awards of Distinction, chosen from the Award of …

Feature Members only content

Husband and wife teams

March 1, 2021

A Juggling Act That Impacts the Bottom Line By Michelle Miron If you’ve ever contemplated running a company with your spouse, you may wonder how it might work to juggle the complications of a relationship with the day-to-day logistics of a business.  Can business disagreements lead to spats over household management? Do family dynamics worm …

MFA Time Standards

2021 MFA Time Standards Manual

January 1, 2021

The Time Standards Manual was developed in 1996 by the Marine Fabricators Association (MFA), a division of the Industrial Fabrics Association International, to serve as a benchmark that shop owners can use to set fabrication times, with which they can generate competitive labor costs. The manual is an ongoing project that will grow and change …

Feature Members only content

Finishing Touches

January 1, 2021

Materials and techniques for marine trimmings that improve form and function.  by Sigrid Tornquist It all matters. Fabric. Thread. Trimmings. They work together and depend upon each other. Skimp on one component and the whole project is compromised. For marine fabricators, trimmings are the critical details that refine and elevate a project. Read on for …

Industry News

Submission deadline extended for MFA Awards

November 27, 2020

The deadline to submit fabrication projects for a chance to win a Marine Fabricators Association (MFA) Fabrication Excellence Award has been extended to Dec. 1, 2020. The submission process has been streamlined, the MFA has added two new categories, and entrants have the option of uploading up to six photos of a project. Fabrication Excellence …

Awards

Submission deadline extended for MFA Awards

November 17, 2020

The deadline to submit fabrication projects for a chance to win a Marine Fabricators Association (MFA) Fabrication Excellence Award has been extended to Dec. 1, 2020. The submission process has been streamlined, the MFA has added two new categories, and entrants have the option of uploading up to six photos of a project. Fabrication Excellence …

Industry News

US Senate passes legislation regarding Section 301 tariffs

June 16, 2021

The U.S. Senate has passed comprehensive legislation that establishes a new exclusion process for products impacted by the Section 301 tariffs on imports from China and reinstates exclusions for products that previously received an exclusion, according to the National Marine Manufacturer’s Association website. The comprehensive legislation, the U.S. Innovation and Competition Act (S.1260), supports American …

IFAI news

IFAI CONNECT online forum now live

June 14, 2021

Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has launched CONNECT, an online platform that enables members to connect, find answers and learn from fellow members. This new initiative from IFAI is intended to facilitate valuable networking with industry peers. For more information and to join this new online community, click here.

Industry News

TowBoatUS predicts a busy boating season

June 3, 2021

TowBoatUS, the on-water towing service that gets boats home after they break down or run aground, is expecting a very busy 2021 summer boating season, according to the BoatingIndustry magazine website. TowBoatUS forecasts the volume of requests from boaters for routine, non-emergency on-water help–a traditional barometer of boating activity–will be up 20 percent over last …

Industry News

Brunswick reopens Flagler County plant to expand Boston Whaler production

June 1, 2021

Brunswick Corporation and Boston Whaler held a groundbreaking ceremony in May ahead of the reopening of its 225,000 square foot Flagler County manufacturing facility to expand production due to record demand for Boston Whaler’s line of fiberglass boats. The expansion will increase production by 40 percent and bring more than 400 jobs to the local …

Industry News

Center for Sportfishing Policy announces new board members, honors former chairman

May 26, 2021

The Center for Sportfishing Policy (CSP) honored its past Chairman Bob Hayes and elected new board members at its annual board meeting in May. CSP honored Hayes with the Eddie Smith Manufacturer of the Year Award for his dedication to the recreational fishing and boating industry and his commitment to angler access and marine conservation. …

Industry News

Shareable resources for National Safe Boating Week from the NSBC

May 24, 2021

During National Safe Boating Week, which is May 22-28, the National Safe Boating Council (NSBC) is encouraging the industry to help share information about responsible boating through digital outreach, launch point reminders, outreach events, vessel safety checks and more. The NSBC’s free Safe Boating Campaign toolkit offers downloadable posters, social media images, template press announcements, …

Industry News

Registration open for Partners Outdoors annual Conference

May 20, 2021

The Outdoor Recreation Roundtable’s annual conference, Partners Outdoors, is set for June 1-2, and registration is now open. The online event is open to all industry stakeholders and brings together federal agencies, business and nonprofit sectors to discuss the future of outdoor recreation and the industry’s most important issues. Topics this year include the impacts …

Industry News

US and EU announce boat tariff agreement

May 18, 2021

The United States and European Union announced an agreement to suspend the looming tariff increase on U.S. boats and engines making their way to the E.U., just days before the scheduled June 1 deadline, according to the National Marine Manufacturers Association website. The negotiating parties have stated that leadership from both sides of the Atlantic …

Industry News

Nominations sought for 2021 Women Making Waves

May 18, 2021

Boating Industry magazine is now accepting nominations for its 2021 Women Making Waves program, highlighting strong female leaders across the marine industry. The 2021 Women Making Waves will be featured in a cover story that will be published in the June/July issue of the magazine, as well as online. Winners will also be recognized at …

Industry News

U.S. FWS expands public access to hunting and fishing

May 13, 2021

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service recently announced a proposal for new or expanded hunting and sport fishing opportunities for game species across 2.1 million acres at 90 national wildlife refuges and on the lands of one national fish hatchery. This proposed rule would open or expand 939 opportunities for hunting or sport fishing (an …

Fabric & Film

Horizon marine upholstery collection expands

April 5, 2021

Sunbrella® announces two new colorways for Horizon™, the brand’s signature marine vinyl fabric that offers industry-leading protection against microbial pinking. Capriccio Salt is a clean and crisp shade that provides a versatile base to coordinate against any palette, from neutrals to brights to warm and cool tones. Capriccio Pacific Blue is a bright and sophisticated …

Products

Weather-resistant,antimicrobial upholstery

March 1, 2021

Sol-Out® has launched a new collection of 100% acrylic antimicrobial outdoor upholstery fabrics that combine two specialty fibers: Durashine™, a high-performance solution-dyed acrylic fiber that provides excellent colorfastness and UV resistance; and Amicor™, which provides permanent antimicrobial qualities by incorporating additives into the core of the fiber. Color brilliancy, durability and microbial protection suitable for …

Products

New marine vinyl, cooler seating

March 1, 2021

Utilizing a change in the pigment, OMNOVA’s CoolComfort™ technology allows heat and light to reflect more optimally off of seating upholstery, creating up to a 15-degree F cooler seating experience. This technology can be added as an upgrade to the company’s broad portfolio of marine and transportation vinyl upholstery including Beacon, the newest addition to …

Products

Next-gen marine and awning fabric

March 1, 2021

Available in three different product categories; SolarShade, SolarShade FR, and SolarShade Plus FR offer breathability, high water repellency, mildew resistance, and outstanding strength and durability. Crafted from advanced staple fiber and spun 100% solution-dyed polyester yarns, these products provide exceptional value at their price point, and after being tried and tested in the field, have …

Products

Tougher threads

March 1, 2021

Sunguard+ UVR bonded polyester thread goes through a state-of-the-art twisting, bonding and dying process to ensure the highest quality of colorfastness and performance. It provides protection against cleaning chemicals, UV rays and seam leakage. It is resistant to mold, mildew, chlorine and bromine. Added nanotechnology prolongs the life of the thread outdoors and helps meet …

Products

Triple-layer protection

March 1, 2021

TRIO® by Sattler has applications for furniture, boat and car covers with a durable top coat of 100% solution-dyed acrylic, a middle construction of a microporous breathable waterproof membrane and a bottom layer of soft knit tricot headliner that won’t scratch or damage the covered surface. Available in six popular colors, it is water, oil …

Products

Speedier digital patterning

March 1, 2021

ExactFlat’s new Scan to Pattern product bundle makes digital patterning faster, easier and more accurate using a simple workflow process to scan in 3D, convert the scan to a 3D CAD model and turn the 3D CAD model into a finished 2D flat pattern file in minutes. The bundle includes a 3D Scanner with 0.1 …

Products

Clever upholstery designs

January 1, 2021

The Clever Collection from Knoll includes four upholstery styles, all durable to 100,000 double rubs and all celebrating the clever geometry of spider webs. Created with an innovative and proprietary process, In Step’s graphic pattern is a translation of dew drops balancing on a spider web. Tempest is a dimensional texture with a mixture of …

Products

Wider patterning fabric

January 1, 2021

Polyfab USA has added 4-meter-wide (157-inch-wide) rolls to its line of Patternpro™ Ultra Stable Patterning Fabric, a clear HDPE woven scrim that is coated on both sides. It is also available in 2-meter-wide (78.7-inch-wide) rolls, and has applications for marine canvas and awning patterning, with excellent stability and good “lay-flat” properties. The material resists wind …

Products

Quilted mattress panels

January 1, 2021

The Luxe Collection is a line of premium fibers for quilted mattress panels that enhance the feel of a sleep surface with a luxurious layer of support and a high-end silky texture that foam cannot achieve on its own. The collection includes Luxe Bliss, the lightest at 12.5 ounces per square yard (osy), Luxe Plush …

Awards

Marine Fabricator wins publishing awards

November 12, 2019

The Minnesota Media and Publishing Association recognized Marine Fabricator magazine, led by senior editor Elisa Bernick, with a Bronze Award and a Silver Award in publishing excellence for how-to articles, “Seam finishing for marine cushions and covers” and “Zipper basics and helpful sewing techniques.” Both articles were written by Terri Madden, owner of Sand Sea …

Interiors & Upholstery

Window Treatment Trends

July 1, 2017

Interest in window coverings for marine applications has experienced a rebirth of sorts and more consumers, fabricators and designers are using innovative window treatment designs. When Krisha Plauché, owner of Onboard Interiors in Marblehead, Mass., is fabricating drapery for a stateroom, she often uses blackout applications, but Plauché has found that lining drapery with a …

In the Shop

Fresh updates for older vessels

January 1, 2017

Most interior fabrication projects occur on fixer-uppers. The vessel might be vintage or it might be less than ten years old. While I always welcome the challenge of doing a better design than the original, there is a fine line between aesthetics and practicality. After all, the boat needs to be both comfortable and secure …

How-To Articles

Constructing snow flies for the Alaskan climate

January 1, 2017

Our winters in Fairbanks, Alaska, can be cold or very cold with lots of snow or little snow; it all depends. One condition we don’t see often is wind. In my 26 years of living here, I can remember only one time when the wind blew and the snow flew. Most of our snow falls …

How-To Articles

Meticulous prototyping leads to attractive cylinder cushions

September 1, 2016

Over the years I have been asked to fabricate several unusual items. I never know if that item will be a one-hit wonder or will become a customer favorite. In most cases, I create prototypes that help me creatively solve design challenges. I charge a prototype fee of a few hundred dollars to develop and …

How-To Articles

Marine fabricators meet customers’ window wish lists

August 1, 2016

When making boat windows for customers, marine fabricators often have a specific set of requirements of their materials. “Our fabricators require a sheet that is easy to handle, durable and can be cut and sewn easily without fear of damaging the product,” says Lyle Shipley, product manager at O’Sullivan Films, Winchester, Va., for O’Sea and …

How-To Articles

Complex and compound frame bending

July 1, 2016

Incorporating unconventional design into dodgers and biminis. I often suggest that my customers try to think out of the box when envisioning what their boats can look like. I tell them, “If I have done my job properly, the cover will become part of the boat.” Take a spray dodger, for example. I generally recommend …

Interiors & Upholstery

The art of project management on contour cushions

July 1, 2016

Marine fabricators are a unique group of craftspeople and business owners. Many of us are familiar with the notion that creative pursuits are right-brain activities, while math and logic are left-brain activities. As marine fabricators, we utilize the right sides of our brains for design solutions that meet customers’ aesthetic and practical expectations. At the …

Interiors & Upholstery

Restyled sleeping cabins

May 1, 2016

Interior sleeping cabins on a vessel have always been my favorite projects. I enjoy researching options and ultimately providing customers with tidy solutions that offer easy accessibility. Cabin spaces and mattresses come in all shapes and sizes. One of my clients claims to sleep 14 people on his 54-foot Bertram with only three interior cabins, …

How-To Articles

Lazy Jack – stack pack sail covers

March 1, 2016

These names are some of the descriptions for a process of suspending sail covers. I started making these Lazy Jack covers 20 years ago, as a progress/advance of the Lazy Jack rope system, designed to help flake a main sail as it is put away. The idea was to connect the rope to a sail …