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Sewing project
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David Lutz

Locale: Bay Area
Sewing project on 11/18/2009 15:13:37 MST Print View

Since I can't find a job I thought I might make a piece of gear that I can't find commercially available.

I've never sewn before, but I know there's a machine around here in mothballs, so I have a few questions:

Where can I buy silnylon by the yard? The lady at the local Joann Fabrics said the had "sport nylon", is that the same thing?

What is the best thread to use on a silnylon project that could be exposed to water?

How much overlap should I allow in the fabric to form a seam?

Thanks in advance!

Frank Deland

Locale: On the AT in VA
sewing on 11/18/2009 15:23:57 MST Print View

Check out supplies and sewing articles at

>> Bender <<
(Bender) - MLife

Locale: NEO
Re: Sewing project on 11/18/2009 15:31:19 MST Print View

David I really like for SilNylon. I just bought 20+ yards of 2nds (I cant tell) so my entire order was at the wholesale price. I ordered medium gray and it turned out to be a little wider at 66" so I was happy. I weighed all 20yds, did the math, and it comes out to 1.35 oz yd2 so again I was happy. I also bought Gutermann thread with my order. I am trying to figure out if it will be ok for SilNylon. It says 70 so I'm not sure if that is the weight or not.

Tim Marshall
(MarshLaw303) - MLife

Locale: Minnesota
Re: Re: Sewing project on 11/18/2009 15:49:46 MST Print View

i use guttermann for sil all the time. The Joann's stuff isn't sil. It is very uncommon to find it local. I say or for even cheaper Noah Lamport, but you have to call them.


Edited by MarshLaw303 on 11/18/2009 15:51:17 MST.

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Sewing project on 11/18/2009 15:53:41 MST Print View

I prefer Seattle Fabrics (yes, they sell online and via phone as well). Good company.

As for thread? Depends. Some like the G. I use cone threads that I use a $3 adapter to run through my machine. I go through a lot of thread though. You should do the seams when done no matter what thread you use.

On seam allowances? Again, open to taste there. 1/2" is easy to monitor. 1/4" is more frugal.

Sarah Kirkconnell
(sarbar) - F

Locale: In the shadow of Mt. Rainier
Re: Sewing project on 11/18/2009 15:54:24 MST Print View

Open Space
(OpenSpace) - F

Locale: Upstate New York
Re: Sewing Project on 11/18/2009 17:04:36 MST Print View

I've been very pleased with Quest Outfitters (

As for thread, I use Guttermann's polyester thread. Play around with the stitches per inch. For my last project, I ended up with 12 stitches per inch for sil-nylon; any fewer and the fabric would pull away between the stitches and any more would add more holes than needed.

Depends on the seam. When I sew flat felled seams, I leave about 1" in one fabric and 1/2" in the other. The former gets wrapped over the latter, and then stitched (the second row) to the panel. As a newcomer to sewing myself, I can only hope for a 1/2 inch seam. For a true hem, I use about a 1/2" seam allowance and again the fabric gets doubled back on itself to hide the cut edge and then sewn to the main panel.

Chris Collins
(hobbitling) - F
joanne "sport ripstop" is not silnylon. on 11/18/2009 19:31:31 MST Print View

no, the sport ripstop from Joanne fabrics is not silnylon. It's much heavier, and who knows what kind of coating it has. probably polyurethane, but they don't even say, and nobody at the store knows.

'Tis not fit to wipe ones hindquarters with!!

get the real, lightweight silnylon, you'll be glad you did.

OWF is good, but they don't have online ordering. But they're very helpful over the phone.

or oware
they sell silnylon seconds for a pretty good price, click on fabrics on the lefthand side. $5/yd.
I've used seconds before and found them to be of perfectly useable quality.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: joanne "sport ripstop" is not silnylon. on 11/18/2009 22:39:21 MST Print View

I suggest it is more likely to be acrylic rather than PU. Acrylic is used on many synthetic fabrics to bond the weave together. It is OK for shower curtains, but it is not waterproof.


David Lutz

Locale: Bay Area
"Sewing project" on 11/18/2009 23:30:37 MST Print View

Thanks for all the responses!

Steve Small
(lustreking) - F
Noah Lamport on 11/19/2009 07:30:46 MST Print View

I just ordered silnylon from Noah Lamport ( They don't have it listed on their website, so you have to call them for it, and to find out what colors they currently have available. When I ordered, it was $3 a yard, but you need to order at least 10 yards of a color, and there's a cutting fee of $5.

I haven't found out how much the shipping is going to cost me, but I asked if they could fold it, rather than roll it to save on the shipping cost.

With the shipping cost, and cutting fee, I expect/hope it to cost $4 or less per yard.

Tom Caldwell
(Coldspring) - F

Locale: Ozarks
re: sewing project -- best silnylon on 11/19/2009 08:30:42 MST Print View

Where can a consumer get the BEST silnylon?

>> Bender <<
(Bender) - MLife

Locale: NEO
Re: re: sewing project -- best silnylon on 11/19/2009 10:49:53 MST Print View

Tom check out Ultra-Sil from Its slightly lighter than standard Sil and the tear strength is high. You can also check out SpinnTex EXP from It is under an ounce finished. Comparing anything but weight is tricky since precise fabric specs are rarely given. I think it would be a great project for someone here to take a scientific approach to testing Sil vs Sil. I would be interested in tear strength, sewn seam strength, and water resistance.