We now carry 1″ black polyester webbing with a 9/16″ reflective strip down the center. This material is thinner than the standard webbing we sell which makes it easy to sew on to bags, packs or even a coat. It is still sturdy enough to use for the adjustment straps on a backpack or with a buckle to fasten something to your bike rack.
Polyester webbing is great for many uses since it has minimal stretch and doesn’t want to adsorb water. It is also quite abrasion resistant although the reflective strip will get worn off due to abrasion. We sell this material by the foot and you can order it online or come by our shop to check it out.
The trend seems to be that all of our outerwear is getting darker and darker making it difficult for drivers to see us when we are walking or biking. Carrying a bag or pack with plenty of reflective surfaces will help you or your children stand out as our days become shorter and weather gets worse. This material is easy to sew so adding it to existing gear should not be a major issue for anyone with a sewing machine.
Here is a picture of our reflective webbing taken in a rather dark room without flash (there was a dim night-light to the left of the webbing)-
And here is a picture of the same piece of webbing taken with the flash turned on-
The webbing in these pictures was about 12″ long and the picture was taken using an iPhone from 15 feet away. It is pretty amazing stuff!
We have designed a battery box tie down kit that will work as a replacement on Boston Whaler’s™ along with any series 24 or 27 battery box. The webbing is polyester and and all hardware is stainless steel (although we do not supply the fasteners).
The combination of the over-center buckle and polyester webbing allows you to get the strap quite tight and it won’t come loose. Polyester is the most ultra-violet resistant webbing we sell so this assembly is perfect for use in open boats where the battery box is exposed to the elements. The sewing is done using A&E’s polyester SunStop thread which has advanced UV protection and is non-wicking to provide excellent service life.
Thanks to Eldon and his team at the Sea-Dog Line for the use of a battery box. The stainless steel footman’s loops come from Sea-Dog.
We will soon be producing quick release sail ties in a wide variety of colors. Unlike our other sail ties, these have a side release buckle, hence the “quick release”, grab loop and sewn tab so you can’t lose the male half of the buckle.
They are made using polypropylene webbing which does not adsorb water or bleed pigment. All sewing is done using A&E’s SunStop polyester thread which has advanced UV protection which helps maintain the strength of the stitching over time.
Just click the buckle closed, grab on to the loop and tab and it is easy to cinch up the sail tie. These should be available online in July, if you want some sooner give us a call at (253) 883-5800.
Are all plastic buckles the same? No they are not.
There are three main plastics that buckles and other hardware for webbing are manufactured from:
All have their strengths and weaknesses and many products are available in more than one plastic so you can choose what will work best in your application. Strength, resistance to heat or ultra-violet light and cost all factor in to what is best. So in alphabetical order lets dive in.
Excellent resistance to immersion in water
Excellent resistance to chemicals and solvents
Retains mechanical properties up to 250° F.
Poor resistance to acids
Subject to UV degradation
Good chemical resistance to oils and greases
Tough and impact resistant
Heat stabilized versions are available which meet various NFPA standards (special order with minimum quantities)
High moisture pick-up with related dimensional instability
Attacked by oxidizing agents
Attacked by strong acids
Excellent moisture resistance
Good impact strength
Degraded by UV
Attacked by chlorinated solvents and aromatics
Putting the factors together Acetal provides the best performance of the three materials (other than for very specialized high temperature applications). So why do some vendors offer polypropylene buckles and hardware? Price. Polypropylene is around 15% less expensive and if price is the driving factor, it can’t be beat. You are trading off durability but in some applications that is not needed.
When you browse our selection of buckles and hardware we tell you what each piece is made from. That applies not only to plastic but also to metal products. In the case of stainless steel, we try to identify the class of material the piece is made out of so you can tell if it is type 316 which will not even stain or type 304 where you will see some rust stains over time.
If you have any questions give us a call, (253) 883-5800 and we will try to answer your questions.
If you have polypropylene, nylon or polyester webbing, you don’t want your cut ends to look like this. Even though I cut this piece of 1″ nylon webbing with a very sharp pair of scissors, the result is awful.
Cutting with a hot knife is the better way to go. I have let this one get really hot so you could see the cutting blade but for actual use it works much better if the temperature is just a bit higher than the melting point of the material.
Nylon: 380º F
Polypropylene: 330º F
Polyester: 500º F
If you don’t own a hot knife you can seal the cut end of your webbing with a propane torch, match, lighter or even with a gas burner on your stove (but don’t make a mess in the kitchen).
The finished result should look somewhat like this. My example is rather black due to the really high heat of the hot knife which melted way more material than is necessary.
You don’t need to have a fancy hot knife like what I have. My Weller soldering iron has a blade that I purchased at the local hardware store which works quite well. The advantage of the tool I use at work is it heats up much faster which is nice if you need to make a bunch of cuts but hardly necessary for occasional use.
If your webbing is a natural fiber like cotton, it won’t melt. There are a few options:
Metal end covers are available like what we use in our military style belt
The raw end of the webbing can be soaked in shellac or some other quick drying liquid to “seal” the end so it won’t fray.
If the webbing didn’t have to pass through something, you can fold it over twice and sew the end so the cut portion is not accessible to fray. This works best with thinner webbing.
We will be in Yakima this weekend, booth 419 at the Central Washington Sportsmen Show. The show is open Friday, Saturday and Sunday February 19-21, 2016. Our booth will feature web straps of many varieties, throw bags and a new product for us, Rod Wranglers.
In addition to the exhibitors there are a wide range of events planned. I think we will have to check out the trout races on Saturday afternoon. When I Googled “trout races” I didn’t get a hit so this is sure to be something special.
Come by our booth and say hi to Karen and myself. Buy a strap or Rod Wrangler or order custom straps, and enjoy the show.
Even though we don’t sell zippers we all use them and know how frustrating it can be when one becomes frozen. This morning I was going through my email and noticed an article published by BoatUS on how to unstick frozen zippers.
I have not tried using vinegar but the next time I have this problem with a corroded zipper my first trip will be to the pantry. My guess is this will work with salt water corrosion, zippers stuck for other reasons might require different techniques. With the nylon coil type I have found when they get stiff and difficult to use some baby oil does the trick. If you have other tricks, let me know.