Uncategorized

In Memoriam

April 20, 2018

Kathleen “Kathy” A. Johnson, 61, of Virginia Beach, Va., passed away on Tuesday, April 17, 2018, at sunset surrounded by her family. She leaves a legacy of love to everyone who knew her. Kathy is survived by Michael (“Mike”), her husband of 36 years, sons Daniel (and his wife Michaux), and Brian (and his wife …

Industry News

IFAI names new president and CEO

April 20, 2018

The Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has named Steve Schiffman, the association’s vice president of media and sales, the new president and CEO of IFAI. He will replace Mary Hennessy, who is retiring June 1, 2018, after holding the position for the last six years. Schiffman had a long and successful career in publishing before …

Industry News

Free webinar April 26 on producing digital content

April 19, 2018

Grow Boating is hosting a free webinar on April 26 with sales and marketing expert Marcus Sheridan about producing effective digital content. Done well, digital content can be an effective tool for increasing traffic, leads and sales revenue. Sheridan will explain what type of digital content a business should produce to move the sales needle …

Industry News

Morbern grows Midwest marine presence

April 17, 2018

Morbern, a North American designer and manufacturer of upholstery vinyl for the contract, health care, hospitality, automotive and marine markets, announced that S.M. Osgood Company will join the Morbern team as sales agents for the marine OEM market in the Midwest. “S.M. Osgood is known for their ability to drive sales and market growth,” said …

Industry News

NMMA representative joins National Boating Safety Advisory Council

April 12, 2018

For the first time in more than a decade, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) is represented on the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC), with the appointment of Nicole Vasilaros, NMMA’s vice president of federal and legal affairs. Vasilaros’ term runs through December 31, 2019. The Council provides advice to the Coast Guard on …

Feature Members only content

Makerspaces offer work-based learning for students

April 10, 2018

The CCC Maker Initiative, administered by Sierra College (www.sierracollege.edu) in Rocklin, California, is offering internships and work-based learning experiences for students through 24 California Community College makerspaces, where students gain technical, entrepreneurial and work-ready skills sought by employers. California Community Colleges participating in the CCC Maker (cccmaker.com) initiative to build makerspace communities are preparing students …

Industry News

Wisconsin receives fish and boating grants

April 5, 2018

U.S. Secretary of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, announced the disbursement of Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund grants to support recreational boating, fishing and wildlife restoration in Wisconsin. The grants total over $1.1 billion across the United States. Wisconsin received a check for $34,966,603 that will be used to support state fish and wildlife …

Industry News

Outboard engine sales trends report available

April 3, 2018

The 2017 Outboard Engine Sales Trends report, part of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) 2017 U.S. Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract, is now available. Outboard engine retail sales increased for the sixth consecutive year in 2017, up 6 percent from the previous year. Detailed information on total dollar sales, units sold, average prices, and top …

Industry News

New VP for Serge Ferrari Americas

March 29, 2018

Serge Ferrari Americas has appointed Jules Duguay as vice president to lead business operations in North, Central and South America. Duguay joins the company after 13 years in the textile industry. He holds an engineering degree from the University of Manitoba and an MBA from Queens University. Duguay will work out of the company’s headquarters …

Industry News

Henderson Sewing Machine celebrates 50 years

March 27, 2018

Henderson Sewing Machine Co., headquartered in Andalusia, Ala., was established 50 years ago by James F. Henderson as a supplier of products to the apparel market. Current owner Frank Henderson joined his father’s company in 1976 after graduating from college with the goal of growing the company and continuing his father’s emphasis on customer service. …

Feature Members only content

Makerspaces offer work-based learning for students

April 10, 2018

The CCC Maker Initiative, administered by Sierra College (www.sierracollege.edu) in Rocklin, California, is offering internships and work-based learning experiences for students through 24 California Community College makerspaces, where students gain technical, entrepreneurial and work-ready skills sought by employers. California Community Colleges participating in the CCC Maker (cccmaker.com) initiative to build makerspace communities are preparing students …

Feature

On the horizon for marine tension shades

March 13, 2018

Canvas shops around the country have seen an increase in demand for tension shades versus fixed-frame structures such as biminis. Boat owners like sun protection with less obstructive framing and the modern look of shade sails. Fabricators who have been installing tension shades are already looking at where the market is heading and where the …

Feature

Fasteners for marine tension shades

March 7, 2018

As more boat owners are having tension shades installed over decks for sun protection, marine fabricators have come up with various ways of attaching the fabric to poles. “The most common fastener is SnapFast® for hardtops,” says Tony Shaw, owner of Affordable Canvas LLC in Venice, Fla. “Sometimes we use keder track or webbing to …

Feature

Zipper tricks and techniques

March 1, 2018

Advanced tips and techniques for choosing and working with zippers in your projects. Providing an excellent end product is paramount to marine fabricators, and zippers play a vital role in the long-term functionality of everything from covers to cushions. But zippers can be tricky. Choosing the right one can be confusing, and working with zippers …

Feature

Marine tension shade options

March 1, 2018

Marine fabricators help boat owners expand shading options with stretched fabric. It could easily be argued that the pleasures of boating are best appreciated on a deck rather than in a cabin. But protection from sun exposure requires more than that provided by a wide-brimmed hat. With that kind of coverage in mind, boat owners …

Feature

2018 MFA Fabrication Excellence Awards

March 1, 2018

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

Feature Members only content

Saving the domestic industrial sewing work force

February 20, 2018

Reposted from insidefashiondesign.net Industrial sewing has reached a critical point. An aging workforce combined with a lack of incoming talent has created a worker shortage that threatens to shutter long-standing American businesses and stifle growth in a billion-dollar industry. We spoke with someone on the front lines of the battle to save industrial sewing—Magda Ronningen, National …

Feature

2018 MFA Time Standards Manual

January 1, 2018

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 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 organically …

Feature

Needle and thread know-how

January 1, 2018

In every theatrical production there are people laboring behind the scenes, working hard to keep things moving forward seamlessly. Generally unsung (at least by the audience), their efforts are integral to the performance’s success; indeed, without these folks the play would quickly fall apart no matter how well-written the script or how fine the actors. …

Feature

Sewing for different markets

January 1, 2018

Crossover skills give upholsterers a variety of opportunities among the furniture, marine and transportation industries—and more skilled workers are needed. The president of the Professional Upholsterers’ Association of Minnesota proudly states that she was the fifth woman to graduate from an upholstery curriculum at Minneapolis Technical College in 1977. “It was considered a man’s field …

Industry News

IFAI names new president and CEO

April 20, 2018

The Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) has named Steve Schiffman, the association’s vice president of media and sales, the new president and CEO of IFAI. He will replace Mary Hennessy, who is retiring June 1, 2018, after holding the position for the last six years. Schiffman had a long and successful career in publishing before …

Industry News

Free webinar April 26 on producing digital content

April 19, 2018

Grow Boating is hosting a free webinar on April 26 with sales and marketing expert Marcus Sheridan about producing effective digital content. Done well, digital content can be an effective tool for increasing traffic, leads and sales revenue. Sheridan will explain what type of digital content a business should produce to move the sales needle …

Industry News

Morbern grows Midwest marine presence

April 17, 2018

Morbern, a North American designer and manufacturer of upholstery vinyl for the contract, health care, hospitality, automotive and marine markets, announced that S.M. Osgood Company will join the Morbern team as sales agents for the marine OEM market in the Midwest. “S.M. Osgood is known for their ability to drive sales and market growth,” said …

Industry News

NMMA representative joins National Boating Safety Advisory Council

April 12, 2018

For the first time in more than a decade, the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) is represented on the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC), with the appointment of Nicole Vasilaros, NMMA’s vice president of federal and legal affairs. Vasilaros’ term runs through December 31, 2019. The Council provides advice to the Coast Guard on …

Industry News

Wisconsin receives fish and boating grants

April 5, 2018

U.S. Secretary of the Interior, Ryan Zinke, announced the disbursement of Sport Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund grants to support recreational boating, fishing and wildlife restoration in Wisconsin. The grants total over $1.1 billion across the United States. Wisconsin received a check for $34,966,603 that will be used to support state fish and wildlife …

Industry News

Outboard engine sales trends report available

April 3, 2018

The 2017 Outboard Engine Sales Trends report, part of the National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) 2017 U.S. Recreational Boating Statistical Abstract, is now available. Outboard engine retail sales increased for the sixth consecutive year in 2017, up 6 percent from the previous year. Detailed information on total dollar sales, units sold, average prices, and top …

Industry News

New VP for Serge Ferrari Americas

March 29, 2018

Serge Ferrari Americas has appointed Jules Duguay as vice president to lead business operations in North, Central and South America. Duguay joins the company after 13 years in the textile industry. He holds an engineering degree from the University of Manitoba and an MBA from Queens University. Duguay will work out of the company’s headquarters …

Industry News

Henderson Sewing Machine celebrates 50 years

March 27, 2018

Henderson Sewing Machine Co., headquartered in Andalusia, Ala., was established 50 years ago by James F. Henderson as a supplier of products to the apparel market. Current owner Frank Henderson joined his father’s company in 1976 after graduating from college with the goal of growing the company and continuing his father’s emphasis on customer service. …

Industry News

AmazonSmile promotion

March 22, 2018

If you shop on Amazon, be sure to take advantage of the AmazonSmile promotion. From March 12–31, 2018, AmazonSmile will triple the donation amount to 1.5 percent to Industrial Fabrics Foundation. Go to smile.amazon.com/ch/52-2164483. For additional details about the promotion, click here

Industry News

Women in Marine Manufacturing Honored

March 22, 2018

Three women in the marine manufacturing industry received 2018 STEP Ahead Awards. They are Valerie Harriell, vice president of human resources, Volvo Penta of the Americas, Alicia Harris, manager, quality and planning, Brunswick Corporation – Brunswick Boat Group, and Shelley Tubaugh, vice president of marketing, Grady-White Boats, Inc. The STEP (Science, Technology, Engineering and Production) …

Products

New exterior roller shades color

March 15, 2018

Phifer Inc. has added a new color to its SunTex® 95 exterior sun control line. The new hue, Stucco, joins the current range of nine neutral color options in this fabric collection designed specifically for exterior roller shade applications. Made from vinyl-coated polyester, the line is thinner and lighter weight than traditional SunTex fabrics. Blocking …

Equipment

Lighter thread snips

March 1, 2018

The ECO thread nipper is a lighter weight thread snips from Kretzer that offers a new feel to snipping threads. Traditional thread snips require the user to pick up and adjust the grip, because the finger has to be placed in the ring before snipping. With these new snips, the user simply picks them up …

Hardware & Findings

New marine hardware options

March 1, 2018

Trivantage has added SolaMesh hardware to its shade sail and structure product offering. This new line of hardware complements SolaMesh fabric with a wide range of D-rings, shackles, stainless steel rope, rope connections and mounting options for all installations. SolaMesh hardware offers eye-on-eye, jaw-on-jaw and hook-on-hook turnbuckle options to suit a variety of preferences and …

Accessories

Rugged thread

March 1, 2018

Trivantage has introduced a new line of filament-bonded polyester sewing thread designed for vinyl, canvas and carpet applications. PremoBond features maximum durability, UV protection and colorfastness. With yarn that’s approximately 30 times stronger than the current industry standard, the thread is long-lasting, even in harsh weather conditions. PremoBond’s proprietary bonding blend and custom-formulated dyes ensure …

Fabric & Film

Tougher transparency

March 1, 2018

Robeco’s newest flexible transparent vinyl provides another film option for the marine and industrial fabrics industries. GlassClear® adds a scratch-resistant coating to both sides of its one ply 030 Clear Extruded Vinyl product. Supplied in roll form, this newest product option allows users to unroll only what they need for a specific job, This reduces …

Fabric & Film

Colorful window coverings

March 1, 2018

Phifer Inc. has added 16 new fabrics to its SheerWeave® Style 5000 line, expanding the current line of 36 patterns in its decorative window covering fabric collection. These additional patterns, previously available only through exclusive sourcing, are now in stock in a 98 inch width. The fabrics feature Microban® antimicrobial product protection to inhibit the …

Fabric & Film

Advanced awning fabric

March 1, 2018

Cooley Group has launched Weathertyte® PLUS, a premier product designed for use in commercial awning applications as well as marine and other markets. The product features the benefits of the original flagship Weathertyte® fabric, with a softer hand, superior strength, improved weldability and bolder image quality. It offers the high performance of vinyl with the …

Products

New compact fiber laser welding system

January 11, 2018

Amada Miyachi America has introduced the updated LMWS Pulsed Fiber Laser Welding System, a highly configurable, compact unit designed for lean manufacturing. The system features a versatile high-power, high-speed laser available in 20-70 Watt (W) powers for welding metals and plastics. The LMWS is ideal for welding dissimilar metals, including copper to aluminum, aluminum to …

Accessories

EVA foam cleaner

January 1, 2018

SC Wake’s Boat Juice is formulated for cleaning the surface dirt off ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA ) non-skid foam boat flooring. Available in a convenient 32 oz. spray bottle, the cleaner is easy to use and requires only soft scrubbing and a rinse. The product is nontoxic, colorfast and environmentally friendly and is safe on upholstery …

Fabric & Film

New flexible enclosure products

January 1, 2018

Covestro has launched two new flexible marine enclosure products—Makrolon® Marine 5 and Makrolon® VR. Both provide high optical clarity, low distortion and exceptional durability. Marine 5 is designed for the most demanding conditions. It provides the highest weathering performance and two-sided hard coat protection against abrasion, UV and chemicals. VR is an alternative to vinyl …

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 Members only content

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 Members only content

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 …

Interiors & Upholstery

Elegant performance in stripes

March 1, 2016

Stripes come in every color, shape and size. A two-color stripe can even be juxtaposed to form an eye-catching pattern. Striking stripe patterns can be matched or combined with solid colors to provide dramatic effects for your next project. Stripes are more popular than ever. Sunbrella likes them so much, subtle as well as dramatic …