A while back we got a call from a company that operates ambulances who needed a custom strap assembly. They were outfitting the fleet with laptops but wanted to make sure the computers would be safe in case of an accident. It wasn’t any little accident, they wanted the computer to be safe if the ambulance ended up on its top, upside down.
The restraint had to be easy to operate otherwise it wouldn’t get used. Since the computer would be between the driver and passenger seats, one-handed operation was essential. It had to be rugged since the laptop was used on each call and there would be many calls every day.
Together we came up with a custom strap, 3″ in width with hook & loop sewn to the webbing. The upper piece of webbing had a large tab on the end so it would be easy to grasp and disengage. A pair of bolts would attach each piece to the aluminum “sleeve” that the laptop rests in. The bill of materials for the project were:
You want a logo on your webbing and would like it to be in color. Quickly you will enter the world of dye sublimation “printing”, often called dye-sub “printing”. This is a process that turns ink into a gas that will bond with polyester. The end result is something that has amazing vibrancy and longevity.
If you ride bicycles, jerseys are “printed” that way and will last longer than most of us care to wear them. Spandex exercise wear is dye-sub “printed”. Now the industry even coats metal and coffee cups with polyester so they can be “printed”. It is an amazing technology.
Dye-sub “printing” does have its downsides when it comes to webbing. It only works on polyester, not nylon or polypropylene. Webbing is thicker than clothing and dye-sub “printing” only will dye the surface.
Above is white polyester webbing that has been “printed” black. From this view it looks great but-
here is the end of the roll. You can see that the center of the webbing is white and should your strap experiance abrasion, you will soon see that white.
This is the side of the same roll of webbing. Once again the white is showing through.
We are dealing with a dyeing process that requires that the ink be darker than the material being dyed. With webbing one starts with white and then you dye the darker colors. If there is white in the image, you just don’t dye in that area. To get a black strap with white lettering you start with white webbing and dye everything other than the lettering.
Advantages of dye sublimation:
Short production runs are possible
True 4 color process
Fast turn around (compared to production runs of webbing with a logo)
You can have different images/colors on each side of the webbing
Disadvantages of dye sublimation:
Not abrasion resistant
Cut ends and the sides of webbing will be white
Is this the right technology for your application? Give us a call and we will help you figure it out. (253) 627-6000
You need a strap with a snap installed on it. That should be easy until you call and we ask what size snap, ligne 24 or ligne 20?
First off, how do you even pronounce ligne? That’s easy, it sounds like “line”. Great, but how do you use this ligne thingy? That isn’t so easy unless you happen to be a watch or button maker from the late 18th century. You can read all about it on Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ligne Now in the US it is defined as 1/40th of an inch.
Getting back to snaps, ligne 24 is the most common size. Boat covers, bag closures, leather working- you see them everywhere. Ligne 20 snaps are sometimes referred to as “baby snaps”. You might see these on clothing but probably not on a strap.
The two sizes are not interchangeable. Tooling to set them is different and with the ligne 24 size, there are many more options. Straps to Go has all the tooling for ligne 24 snaps. If you have a project that requires the smaller size please allow an extra week for us to get the tooling and snaps.
Webbing choice will dictate the ease of installing a snap:
549 standard weight polypropylene: easy
560 heavy weight polypropylene: expect some rejects, stainless steel posts would help.
630 lightweight nylon: expect some rejects and some puckering of the webbing may occur.
7400 heavyweight nylon: must punch a hole prior to setting the snap
Polyester: must punch a hole prior to setting the snap. On very light weight polyester you might get away with having stainless steel posts but testing would be required.
The labor to install a snap in heavyweight nylon will be twice that of standard weight polypropylene. Without punching a hole, the post of the snap will just bend over.
Webbing and grommets go together like peanut butter and jelly. If you need a hole through a piece of webbing a grommet will prevent it from chafing. They come in all sorts of sizes and while brass is the most common metal used to make grommets, stainless steel is also an option.
Trying to be efficient we use self piercing grommets whenever possible. This eliminates the need to pre-punch a hole through the webbing making the assembly more cost effective. Our semi-automatic setting machine can handle the following sizes-
If you need something larger we have to install them manually. Here you can get up to a 13/16″ inside diameter and there are also more material options.
When specifying a grommet you need to be specific. Are you providing us with the grommet size, inside diameter or outside diameter? Recently we had an inquiry where the outside diameter of the grommet was larger than the width of the webbing, that doesn’t work. We also need to know your material preference. Plain brass, stainless steel, brass with a nickel plating and brass with a black oxide plating are the most common. Not all sizes and types are available in every finish.
Grommets can also be installed without the washer as seen in the image above. This is a polypropylene strap that has the loop side of hook & loop sewn to it. We have then placed a grommet without washer into one end of the strap. Why, I am not sure but it does show another option.
If a grommet is overkill we can melt small holes in to polypropylene, nylon and polyester webbing. This technique does not provide any protection to the webbing but there are applications where that is not necessary.
Give us a call at (253) 627-6000 if you have questions, we are always happy to talk about grommets.
Looking for belt extenders that fit Block & Company tip bags? We can make them.
A customer called looking for these. They had tried ordering some elsewhere only to find that the buckles weren’t the same so they wouldn’t work. The buckle on the tip bag was an ACW CSR 1″ which is something we have in stock. For under $3.00 each our customer now has belt extenders.
Not having been to more than 2 or 3 casino’s in my life, I don’t have a clue how a tip bag is used but I hope the employees need them because they are getting massive tips and need a secure way to transfer them to their bank accounts.
Here are examples of a 12″ and 24″ strap extenders made from #630 black 1″ nylon webbing and ACW’s 1″ CSR buckle. We can make these any length and this webbing comes in many colors.
We were asked to make a knife sheath and adjustable belt for workers in fish canneries. They needed to be rugged, inexpensive and easy to use.
The sheath is made from our 2″ #673 webbing which is extremely stiff and in commonly used for scuba divers weight belts. A pair of rivets and a bit of sewing and you have a functional sheath.
Every sheath needs a belt and this one needed to be adjustable and easily worn over cannery aprons or waterproof rain gear.
Here we used heavyweight #560 polypropylene webbing in an 1½” width. There are a few inches of elastic webbing to keep it taught without being uncomfortable and a side release buckle to make it easy to put on and take off. Finally a slide keeps the tail end of the belt secure and makes sure it doesn’t decide to loosen on its own accord.
Like the sheath there is minimal labor in producing the belt, helping keep the cost down. Is this something to wear around town? No, but it does fulfill the need if you are working in a cannery.