Years ago I dabbled in the area of MYOG and UL backpacking and actually made a few things and was an active member over at thelightweightbackpacker.org; however my most recent project has me stumped sourcing fabric. So rather than subscribe at a sewing forum that I’d use and abandon, I figured I should make an account here since it has proven very useful in my research thus far and seems like a place I’d remain active beyond this project
This project started as a search for a soft shell jacket with a removable snows skirt that is mid weight, easy to layer under and versatile enough to use essentially year round for backpacking, XC, down hill and AT skiing. After finding nothing that fit what I wanted (that also wasn’t $300+) I have decided to make my own exactly the way I want.
Purpose: year round pull over for wind, rain and snow. That is light, packable and easy to layer under.
Features to include;
- Wrist gators
- Removable snow skirt
- Sidewinder half zip
- draw string bottom
- Gusseted/alpine cut sleeves to prevent lifting
- Zipper garages
- pocket arrangements?
- Back map pocket?
- Napoleon pocket?
- 2 fabric construction top/bottom, front/back
I am thinking of something similar to the Patagonia knife blade (http://www.patagonia.com/us/product/mens-knifeblade-pullover?p=83270-0-961) although I am also planning to copy patterns from the other jackets I have.
Also drawing from the other jackets I own, the fabrics I am leaning toward are Schoeller dryskin and another non insulated 4 way stretch, ideally with nanosphere characteristics. The down side I have had with dryskin before has been that it pills really badly (i.e. Velcro wrist straps) and in one jacket I have (c. 2004) threads actually broke in the fabric creating runs.
I have tons of other notes on this project, but like I said the road block I am running into is fabric selection. Ideally I’d use the Dryskin-ish material for the front and sleeves, and run a segment of the thinner, non lined, more breathable material up the center of the back and in the armpit gussets. However between finding dryskin and finding somewhere local to actually look at the fabric it is very difficult to know what I am looking at online lol. Would like to consider Polartec fabrics since there seems to be more supply online, but I have no idea what I’d be looking at.
There is one technical fabric store close to me (Narains in Berkeley CA) but they have really weird store hours so I haven’t been able to make it out there yet. So any opinions anyone has on soft shell material for MYOG would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
EDIT: I'm also trying to learn more about seam taping (internal and external like the MH Synchro jacket) and sealing techniques, so help there would be greatly appreciated as well!