As simple as it sounds, Joe S is hopefully as stoked as I am that the bag is ready for his 58 Cross Check.
Classy bag. Lucky man.
That bag looks great! Are you using Cotton Duck? I just made my own recently, and I’m going to start making some more. I’m using Xpac for mine. Let me know what you think.
I actually saw you post come up last week, was going to comment, and then things got busy. Your bag looks really good. It is amazing what the extra level of work, creativity and satisfaction is when you are making your own patterns. Looking at your bag the only thing I would do differently, for your purposes, is add some kind of retention closer to the corners of the triangle to prevent possible flop in the future. I have been making my bags out of #8 cotton duck, 18oz per yd. I think that I am the only guy making canvas frame bags at the moment. That said I do have about 10 yards of Xpac in the garage to make a full set of bags for my Roadeo soon. For everyday use the canvas is great and warter repellant, but hard to work with while I am fleshing out new ideas. Unlike the synthetics you need to stitch around the canvas pieces prior to assembly ot prevent fraying, then bind all internal seams after assebly for the same reasons. I also go through the extra work of making the straps, as opposed to just velco stitched in. It is a little stronger and looks better for just a bit of weight gain.
You’re right about the straps. This was my first one and I made some wrong measurements that ended up moving all of my straps from where I wanted them to be. I tweaked and remeasured my pattern so that should be corrected for the next one.
Got any close up pics of the straps? Also, how do you make that zipper flap? My zippers are exposed, but are waterproof. Covered AND waterproof would be ideal though.
My cousin had a great suggestion that may work for you. She suggested making a bag out of muslin first. At least the shape. That way you can refine your ideas/patterns without wasting the more expensive fabric.
Are you using that old Singer machine? My Pops has one of those too. Pretty awesome.
For my thin straps I am backing 3/4″ velcro with grosgrain ribbon. Sew the velcro to the ribbon just like a Teva strap. for my main strap over the top tube I am backing 2″ velcro with the canvas duck. The bottom piece has one layer of canvas, while the top has two. All of the straps are tacked to the side panels, then the bag is stitched together, and then I go around the whole thing one more time to put on the inner seam binding. If the binding seam were to fail the bag would expand a 1/4″ or so and still be held solid by the assembly seam. It takes me a while for all the extra steps, but the results are worth it.
The zipper thing took a bit of learning and figuring, Honestly I can not even put it in words and may have to do a step by step with pictures, maybe on the next bag. The storm flap over a waterprof zipper seems like it should fair well enough. My prototype bag that I have on the Roadeo stayed dry through our entire winter. Head over to you local REI/Sports Chalet etc and spend a good hour or so looking at every zipper on every bag for ideas, the iner most seam was usually first in the assembly with the other seams working your way out. Make notes on which face (inner ot outer) is touching at each seam and you should be able to re-construct it.
I have a ton of muslin, and have toyed with using it for practice. In the end I keep going back to lots of paper planning and measure 4 times cut once. I figure that by the time I build one out of muslin I could have had a real bag. The canvas is a PITA when turning corners or making the top velcro backing. I made one out of nylon pack cloth and it went so easy I though I did something wrong. That is when I invested in the 10-15 yards of Xpac seconds. I figure prototype bags for me will go more quickly, while I wend up with something that can actually be used.
My singer was a night and day revelation over fighting a bit with my modern plastic machine. Yes it will only do a straight stitch, but that is 99% of what I need and it does it perfectly through damn near anything. I am almost done with a re-wire job on a similar machine with a geared motor that should be even better if that is possible. My old machine will be finding its way to my Aunt. If you are ever looking for a machine I have a guy here in town who cleans then up and flips them for an astonishingly fair price, he has a Necci (singer clone) on CL today,
I can imagine that your Singer is better. I’m using a plastic modern machine, but I was spoiled by using my friend’s industrial machine with a walking foot. The walking foot makes a huge difference. I’m on the hunt for one now. I’m selling my LHT to be able to get one.
You say that corners are tough with the cotton duck. Do you snip the fabric at the corners? That makes it much easier to make your way around. Our assembly is a little different. I stitch the straps to the center spine first, and then attach each side at a time. This way I ensure that the straps always line up. However, if like my prototype, my spine measurement is wrong, the strap position is wrong too. I figured out what I did wrong though, so hopefully that’s a thing of the past.
I just got some ballistic material to use for the down tube and seat tube sections of the bag. Hopefully the next bag construction will start this week.
Good luck on your hunt for a machine. I tried a few comerciial machines and will likely have at least one in the future, but the singers get the job done and weigh a lot less, take up less space etc while I am still getting things organized. I came across a Sailrite machine with straight, zigzag and a walking foot at a swap meet for $600 and passed on it, still kind of kicking myself for that one. I wouuld keep your eyse open, nautical flea markets classifieds etc for one of those or a singer unless you plan to make a ton of stuff, have the dedicated space and a circut that can handle the amps.
Some corners can’t be cut 😉 – The bottom turns on my saddle bag, or Berthoud style handlebar bags, the bottom corrners are tough. Likewise binding tape on angles less than 90 are still a pain too. As for mounting the tabs on the spine, I thoughtabout that but either way you can still mess it up. I may try that the nexr time. Although with my designs I keep more precision in the side panels and room fo rslop in the seam allowance in the spine. Always room to refine the process though. The balistic cloth is nice, sews well and is plenty tough.
Sailirite portable is high on my list. Might just pull the trigger on one. Portable and tough as nails. Don’t think I’d ever need another machine.
I’m going to look into the binding tape. Might be helpful.
If you are on sailrite’s page take a look ant the binding tape attachments they have, life changing after trying to do it by hand.
Are you talking about this?
How is this different from grosgrain? What do you use it for?
no this thing:
but look for it on ebay or someplace else fo rabout half the price. I have been using a non swing model, but should have sprung for the swing. They have some good videoson youtube on how to use it too
Check out my blog today. Bag #3 came out pretty good. Sailrite machine is awesome.