Members Only  

Working with Lexan

January 1, 2010

Compiled by Juli Case Question: I’ve been asked to do a cover for an all-terrain vehicle. I have to use a Lexan window and attach an awning rail to it. I’m concerned about cracking the Lexan. Any suggestions? Answer: A Lexan is a brand of polycarbonate. It’s more rigid than some other window products. We …

Members Only  

Getting government bids

September 1, 2009

Compiled by Juli Case Question: With this economy, boat work has been slow. We’d like to get into military contract work and have heard we have a good chance, since we’re used to working with canvas, and government jobs use a lot of heavy fabric. Where do we go to find out about government bids? …

Members Only  

Defining accelerated weathering

Compiled by Juli Case Question: The sales literature on the boat cover fabric I’m thinking of using has information on something called accelerated weathering. What’s that and how does it relate to how long the fabric will last? Answer: Assessing how a fabric is going to perform outdoors is a tricky business. Not only is …

Members Only  

Cutting “fun foam”

July 1, 2009

Compiled by Juli Case Question: We’re going to be doing a foam cutting project in which we’ll cut out 200 pieces at a time. We would ideally like to use computerized equipment. The foam is ¼-thick “fun foam,” like you find at craft stores. Where can we get the equipment to cut it? Answer: We …

Members Only  

3M offers SJ 3518 hook and loop fastener

Compiled by Juli Case Question:We’re looking for a specific hook and loop fastener, the SJ 3518. Where can we get it? Answer:With the product number, we were able to trace this hook and loop fastener to 3M. The company described it as an adhesive-backed, flame retardant hook and loop fastener that is part of its …

Members Only  

Finding small quantities of Polartec and Windpro fabrics

Compiled by Juli Case Question: Where can I find small quantities of Polartec and Windpro fabrics? I only need a couple of yards for a special project. Answer: Polartec and Polartec Wind Pro are trade names of Polartec LLC, and they’re both fleece materials. For a few yards, it’s unlikely that you can purchase directly …

Members Only  

Making window screening work

May 1, 2009

Compiled by Juli Case Question: I fabricate front enclosures on house boats using smile zippers and a vinyl-coated polyester fabric. I use the double-finish technique I learned at a canvas training facility, with good results. A customer asked to have screening over the window portion. It works fine when it’s hanging, but it’s too bulky …

Members Only  

Comparing upholstery fabric for bus and boat seating

Compiled by Juli Case Question: I usually do boat upholstery, but have the opportunity to reupholster the seats on two buses. I need help finding the fabric. It’s a woven velvet with a very colorful pattern. Answer: Although both are upholstery applications, the materials used in buses and boats have a couple of fundamental differences. …

Members Only  

Sources offer stocking programs for olive drab cotton duck

March 1, 2009

Compiled by Juli Case Question: We’re looking for olive drab cotton duck that’s been treated for water and mildew resistance. Can you point us towards any sources? Answer: There’s been a run on olive drab cotton duck recently (we’re not exactly sure why). We had three different fabricators, all in different parts of the country …

Members Only  

Resources help keep companies in touch

Compiled by Juli Case Question: The phone number for a company that we used to buy fabric from is no longer in service. Is there a way to find out if it’s still in business? Answer: Area codes for telephone numbers sometimes change, so that’s the first thing to check. Your telephone service provider should …