Selecting the best fabric

March 1, 2018

Thank goodness for Dr. Google! When sourcing textile options for projects, fabricators can simply type in “marine fabric” and up pops a plethora of vendors and nautical-themed images. You’ll find individual maritime insignias that correspond to each of the 26 letters of the alphabet as well as graphic illustrations for almost every kind of nautical …

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New marine flooring products

When we think about trends in marine flooring, traditional glue-down carpet was initially replaced by snap-in carpet, and now, carpet is being used less and less overall. On the interior, the products replacing carpet are heavy vinyl linoleum, hardwood and even tile. As for the exterior, people are using woven vinyl, synthetic teak and ethylene-vinyl …

Preparing for disasters

January 1, 2018

Editor’s note: Like many people who live and work in Puerto Rico, longtime contributor Terri Madden, owner of Sand Sea and Air Interiors Inc., has been deeply affected by the hurricanes. We asked her to write a column to help others learn from her experience. When a disaster occurs, everything takes on a new meaning. …

Word-of-mouth marketing still works

Mathew Rice was frustrated last year when he couldn’t find anyone near his Fremont, Ohio, home who could make an enclosure for his Maxum 2800 Sport Cruiser without at least a three-month wait. So Rice decided to purchase the necessary equipment, get some training and do the job himself. “I told my wife, ‘I’m going …

Bimini backstay cutouts fabrication

At Hood Canvas, we fabricate sailing biminis on a regular basis. By extending the bimini aft of the standing rigging, our customers get better sun and weather coverage at the helm. This means the backstay or backstays pass between bimini frame components. Folding the bimini is restricted to folding upward against the backstay. We recommend …

Dodger, bimini and enclosure fabrication

September 1, 2017

The big three—a dodger, bimini and enclosure combination on a Hylas 54 sailing yacht—combine a multitude of skill sets. It is one of the most challenging of all canvas projects to pull off correctly. In this article, we will examine the order of fabrication, techniques unique to this combination and pitfalls to avoid when fabricating …

Avoid pitfalls during layoffs

It’s an unwelcome responsibility, but almost every business owner and manager will eventually come face-to-face with the disagreeable task of terminating one or more employees. “Firing people is one of the toughest, most unpleasant things you do as an employer,” says James Walsh in his book Rightful Termination (Merritt Publishing 2006). “Your stomach tightens and …

Boat shows highlight new marine upholstery trends

Boat shows are a rich resource. When was the last time you attended a local or international boat show? If it’s been awhile, I recommend you put it on your agenda. To stay a notch ahead of the competition, professional marine fabricators must be aware of new concepts, designs and materials. Viewing new boats at …

Planning a 40-foot yacht cover with no snaps part two

July 1, 2017

This article is a follow-up to the one I wrote in the May/June issue of Marine Fabricator in which I discussed the project plan our team utilized to meet the customer’s request for a full boat cover for a 40-foot Andreyale yacht. The boat is the property of the Peninsula Yacht Club in Cornelius, N.C., …

How to control workers’ comp costs

If yours is a typical manufacturing shop, workers’ compensation costs—or the threat of them—can quickly become a major expense. Almost every business in the United States that has employees must deal with the cost of workers’ compensation, so you’re not alone in this potentially damaging liability. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to help …