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Another Tarp Reinforcement Question
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Tyler Miller
(FightingTheTide) - F

Locale: Southeast
Another Tarp Reinforcement Question on 02/09/2013 19:00:42 MST Print View

I'm making a 9.5' x 5' flat tarp, but got a little excited last night and forgot to add reinforcement patches prior to hemming. Is this a problem? I've been browsing as many of the tarp reinforcement threads that I can and didn't see anything on that.

I was planning on making some 8"-10" circles of 1.1 sil, cutting them in half, and using them as a wrap-around reinforcement for the corners, and a full circle for the edge reinforcements. I'm guessing I would sew along the perimeter. I think I saw this idea on here somewhere. Is this a good route?

I plan on using shock cord for tensioners if that makes a difference.

Roger Caffin
(rcaffin) - BPL Staff - MLife

Locale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Re: Another Tarp Reinforcement Question on 02/09/2013 20:08:42 MST Print View

You need to spread the load out. What you are proposing is a good start, but I would suggest bonding the reinforcing to the tarp as well. Silicone adhesive on both sides would be very nice, then sew the edges.


Tyler Miller
(FightingTheTide) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: Another Tarp Reinforcement Question on 02/10/2013 12:15:37 MST Print View

I have Loctite Clear Silicone Waterproof Sealant already. Would this work?

My wife has a small roller that I could use to press the reinforcement patches to the main tarp body. I figure I would put some heavy books over each reinforcement overnight. And I would also guess not to let the silicone spread to the edges so I can avoid sewing through the sealant. Am I on the right track?

Edited by FightingTheTide on 02/10/2013 12:16:07 MST.

Jim Colten
(jcolten) - M

Locale: MN
Re: Another Tarp Reinforcement Question on 02/10/2013 13:31:48 MST Print View

Hi Tyler,

Warning, shameless plug ... If you were an "M" level member or are willing to pay the per-article fee you'd find some helpful hints here

But you are on the right track. My own experience has been limited to "GE Silicone Sealant II" so I cannot vouch for the Loctite product but from what is on the "(somewhat)technical data sheet" I'd say it is well worth testing on some silnylon scraps. Coat both surfaces with the adhesive and then scrape off as much as you can. Definitely do weight it down but it does not require a lot of weight, 2kg for a piece the size you mentioned has worked for me.

I've had no difficulties (such as needle fowling) sewing through laminates prepared like that.

Tyler Miller
(FightingTheTide) - F

Locale: Southeast
Re: Re: Another Tarp Reinforcement Question on 02/10/2013 20:21:22 MST Print View

If I hadn't maxed out my budget for gear, I would look into a premium membership. Maybe in a month or two once I can get some more money in the gear budget. I've acquired a new pack, quilt, shoes, clothes, and other small gear all in 2 months.

With the reinforcement patches:

Does anyone have a link to the thread that has the circle reinforcement patch? I think I have a good idea of what it should look like - 1/2 circle for corners and full circle for edges.

And what about attaching grosgrain?

My guess would be to sew it to the circle patches and have it lay between the tarp body and the patch. It seems like that would give it a little more strength (unless I'm mistaken) as opposed to having the grosgrain outside the patch.

Another thing - I'll be folding the grosgrain in half to create a loop. It should go on either side of the tarp body, right? From top to bottom, you would have Patch-Grosgrain-Tarp-Grosgrain-Patch.

Also, am I right that sewing the grosgrain ONLY to the patch is better than through the tarp body as well? I'm imagining this would spread the tension along the patch first, and then into the tarp, whereas sewing through the patch AND tarp body would transfer the load directly to the tarp and almost bypass the purpose of the patch.

Lot's of imagining going on here. Help me out if my musings are off.

Edited by FightingTheTide on 02/10/2013 20:24:07 MST.

jerry adams
(retiredjerry) - MLife

Locale: Oregon and Washington
Re: Re: Re: Another Tarp Reinforcement Question on 02/14/2013 17:43:16 MST Print View

Lately I've just been sewing grosgrain to the hem and seam - if there's a seam going to where you want the tie-out to be - like if it's a peak ridge that two pieces that have been sewn together.

Some zigzag stitch through the hem and some more through the seam. If needle holes are closer than about 1/16th inch, then it weakens the fabric, so back stitch to lock thread, do a zigzag with 1/16th inch between holes, and then back stitch to lock thread.

I used to do reinforcing, but then quit and it's never ripped, so I guess it's not necesary. Most people probably use reinforcing though.