Industry News

Minneapolis Innovation Awards announced

January 17, 2018

The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and Boating Writers International (BWI) honored winners of the 2018 Minneapolis Innovation Awards, recognizing groundbreaking new consumer marine products. This is the first year the Innovation Awards came to Minneapolis to honor manufacturers and suppliers who bring new, innovative products to the boating industry market in the following categories: …

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 …

Industry News

Tidewater Boats expanding Lexington County operations

January 9, 2018

Tidewater Boats is growing its Lexington County operations with a new satellite facility to build larger saltwater boats. To accommodate the production of larger models, the company is investing $8.3 million and creating 100 new jobs. Founded in 2006, Tidewater Boats has grown from five models 10 years ago to 24 models today. Boat sizes …

Industry News

Construction underway for 2018 Miami International Boat Show

January 4, 2018

Construction at Miami Marine Stadium Park and Basin is well underway for the 2018 Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show, Feb. 15-19. The show team continues preparations for what is shaping up to be a busy show, with more than 1,400 boats expected on-land and in-water, representing more than 175 brands. For more information, visit …

Industry News

2018 California Boating Congress set for February 27-28

January 2, 2018

The Marine Recreation Association (MRA) is sponsoring the 2018 California Boating Congress (CBC), February 27-28 in Sacramento, CA at the Hyatt Regency. The two-day event brings together the marine industry and boating community to advocate for issues affecting this important part of the state’s economy and culture, and chart the future of boating policy in …

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 …

Company News

Glen Raven debuts solar array

January 1, 2018

Glen Raven Inc. has launched a $2 million solar farm at its Anderson, S.C.-based manufacturing plant. The company’s 3,076-panel solar farm will power 100 percent of the 1-million-square-foot facility’s lights. Leib Oehmig, Glen Raven’s president and CEO, says Glen Raven expects to achieve payback on its investment within four years in terms of energy savings. …

Company News

ASA names new president

January 1, 2018

The American Sportfishing Association’s (ASA) board of directors announced that Glenn Hughes, ASA’s vice president for industry relations, has been hired to take on the role of president beginning April 1, 2018.

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 …

Company News

IFAI President and CEO to retire

January 1, 2018

The Industrial Fabrics Association International (IFAI) president and CEO, Mary Hennessy, will retire on June 1, 2018. The IFAI Board of Directors has begun a search for her replacement and plans to name the person by May 1, 2018. Hennessy was named president in June 2012 after serving in the interim role for eight months. …

Feature Members only content

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 …

Feature

Keep waiting customers happy

October 17, 2017

In those parts of the country where boats get put away in the winter, the first hints of spring often bring a rush of business for marine fabricators that doesn’t slow down until the leaves start to fall. Once that work begins to back up during warm-weather months, it’s not unusual for fabricators to quote …

Feature

New marine hardware addresses tough issues

September 1, 2017

The marine environment poses many considerations for fabricators providing products like cushions, windshield covers, enclosures and the like to this industry. Not only do they have to take the sun, wind, salt air and water into account, they must also figure out how to keep these items firmly in place (while being easy to take …

Feature

New thinking about pinking

September 1, 2017

Vinyl manufacturers and marine service providers contend with discoloration caused by a bacteria. “Pink” brings to mind a little girl dressed as a princess, cotton candy at the county fair and plastic lawn flamingos. But for those in the marine industry, the word takes on a sinister connotation as a stain caused by streptoverticillium reticulum. …

Feature Members only content

Problem-solving fasteners

September 1, 2017

Using the right fastener is critical for solving problems rather than creating them. As any marine fabricator will attest, carefully constructed cushions, windshield covers, enclosures, window treatments and so on have to withstand sun, salt, wind and water as well as normal (and occasionally rough) handling by their clients. These items also need to be …

Feature

Marine business passes to next generation

September 1, 2017

In 2007, Kate Mitchell set up a 10-year plan to transition her business on the Alaskan frontier to her children. Today her children value the company’s courageous past and anticipate a bright future. We didn’t homestead like the Kilcher family from Discovery Channel’s Alaska: The Last Frontier but we were here before the roads were …

Feature

Can the Maker Movement benefit the marine industry?

August 1, 2017

Roombas, smart phone apps, Alexa, and cars with park assist. It seems that humans don’t have to do much of anything these days in order to vacuum the carpet, track their calories, turn on the lights or squeeze their Ford Focus between curbside SUVs. And yet, like the balance of nature, the world needs a …

Feature Members only content

Train, recruit and keep employees

July 1, 2017

Competition, especially from overseas manufacturing; increasing costs for equipment, materials and labor; the need to keep up with fast-paced technology; and the general state of the economy, which directly affects the consumer pool, rank as challenging issues for most businesses. Yet the owner of a marine fabrication shop in Portland, Ore., has a more pressing …

Industry News

Minneapolis Innovation Awards announced

January 17, 2018

The National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) and Boating Writers International (BWI) honored winners of the 2018 Minneapolis Innovation Awards, recognizing groundbreaking new consumer marine products. This is the first year the Innovation Awards came to Minneapolis to honor manufacturers and suppliers who bring new, innovative products to the boating industry market in the following categories: …

Industry News

Tidewater Boats expanding Lexington County operations

January 9, 2018

Tidewater Boats is growing its Lexington County operations with a new satellite facility to build larger saltwater boats. To accommodate the production of larger models, the company is investing $8.3 million and creating 100 new jobs. Founded in 2006, Tidewater Boats has grown from five models 10 years ago to 24 models today. Boat sizes …

Industry News

Construction underway for 2018 Miami International Boat Show

January 4, 2018

Construction at Miami Marine Stadium Park and Basin is well underway for the 2018 Progressive Insurance Miami International Boat Show, Feb. 15-19. The show team continues preparations for what is shaping up to be a busy show, with more than 1,400 boats expected on-land and in-water, representing more than 175 brands. For more information, visit …

Industry News

2018 California Boating Congress set for February 27-28

January 2, 2018

The Marine Recreation Association (MRA) is sponsoring the 2018 California Boating Congress (CBC), February 27-28 in Sacramento, CA at the Hyatt Regency. The two-day event brings together the marine industry and boating community to advocate for issues affecting this important part of the state’s economy and culture, and chart the future of boating policy in …

Industry News

2018 Boat Show Award entries being accepted

December 14, 2017

Entries are now being accepted for the 2018 Progressive® Insurance Miami International Boat Show® Innovation Awards. Winners will be announced at the boat show on February 16. Deadline for entry is January 8. Full program details and requirements can be found at www.miamiboatshow.com/show-awards. The Innovation Award program is managed by the National Marine Manufacturers Association …

Industry News

New powerboat registrations up in October

December 12, 2017

The National Marine Manufacturers Association’s (NMMA) New Powerboat Registrations Report has been updated through October 2017. Advance data show new powerboat registrations were up 4.7 percent year-over-year (YOY) for the rolling twelve-month (R12M) period through October. Highlights from the report include: Nearly all segments were up through October (R12M YOY). Growth in registrations was led …

Industry News

IFAI Expo 2018 call for presentations

December 6, 2017

IFAI Expo 2018 is looking for presentation topic ideas and interested speakers. Expo will be held October 15-18, 2018 in Dallas, Texas. Submit now! The Call for Presentations deadline is January 12, 2018.  Categories Advanced Textiles  Shade and Weather Protection Specialty Fabrics  General Business Benefits of Presenting Build your reputation as an industry expert Share your knowledge …

Industry News

IFAI Canada Expo 2018

December 6, 2017

Canada Expo 2018 is like no other event – a unique opportunity to meet manufacturers and businesses face-to-face and immerse yourself in new knowledge and leading edge solutions. Don’t miss your opportunity to experience the latest in the specialty fabrics industry through the sights, sounds and innovations of the exhibit floor. Register now! Dedicated Exhibit Hall Hours …

Industry News

International Boating Report Available

December 6, 2017

The newly released international Recreational Boating Industry Statistics report is now available to National Marine Manufacturers Association (NMMA) members. Published by the International Council of Marine Industry Associations (ICOMIA), the report details 80 percent of the world’s leisure boating business with data covering a broad range of industry segments, with new reporting this year from …

Industry News

New videos help fight aquatic invasive species

December 5, 2017

CD3, a company dedicated to providing resources to fight aquatic invasive species, is sharing free videos on its website to educate boaters and industry professionals. These include videos for battling invasive species on specific boat types including cruisers, ski boats, fishing boats and pontoon boats. In addition, videos on the CD3 website offer instruction on …

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 …

Equipment

Heavy-duty marine shears

January 1, 2018

Kretzer introduces new Spirale 10-inch and 12-inch drop forged tailor’s shears with a thinner blade and highly pointed tip making cutting into corners and tight spots easier. A new, flatter screw system makes these shears easier to holster, and a lock washer in combination with a spring washer helps to keep tension on the blades …

Hardware & Findings

Tough marine zip

January 1, 2018

Sunbrella® Performance Zippers feature tape made using 100 percent Sunbrella fibers, giving them the inherent performance characteristics of all Sunbrella textiles–UV and fade resistance, mold and mildew resistance and bleach cleanability–while the specially-designed WX zipper teeth keep wind and water out. The line also features IDEAL Fastener Corporation’s patented QRX technology for quick release with …

Fabric & Film

High performance cushion fabrics

January 1, 2018

Phifer’s new 2018 GeoBella® cushion and Phifertex® sling fabrics lines are marked by water-inspired blues and greens and varied textures. The GeoBella line of high-end, performance cushion fabrics mirror the comfort of indoor furniture yet have the stability, strength and durability needed for high-traffic applications. Phifertex high performance fabrics for outdoor seating are woven to …

Products

Luxurious boat flooring

January 1, 2018

Infinity Woven Products LLC has introduced new designs to its Pattern Series collections of Luxury Woven Vinyl™ (LWV) flooring to the marine aftermarket. Manufactured and supplied in America, the newest designs are Current, Flax and Abacá, all created on state-of-the-art jacquard looms which manipulate individual yarns to form vibrant woven designs. Infinity’s LWV flooring is …

News

Tougher transparent vinyl

December 21, 2017

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, reducing waste …

Products

AllergoProtect bedding

November 9, 2017

AllergoProtect is a trio of products—mattress topper, duvet and pillow—which hold 99.5 percent of dust mite allergens inside the filling and the cover, even when shaken. This means allergens are not breathed in and no longer cause allergic reactions. The German research group Hohenstein developed a negatively-charged textile finish that attracts the positively-charged allergens like …

Expo

This year’s Show Stopper winners

September 28, 2017

All the best from New Orleans: Thursday morning at IFAI Expo led off with lists of winners for the year, including the most popular products on the show floor. The sixth annual Show Stopper competition was designed to showcase the best of the best in the industry, from fabrics, equipment and chemicals to services and …

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 …