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Sew What! DIY Tips and Tricks.

12515 Views 128 Replies 24 Participants Last post by  MT4Runner
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Other users have shown an interest in having one place to gather our thoughts on each persons best ideas on how to DIY crappy homemade gear. So here we go, contribute your successes and as importantly your failures. Mistakes are a great learning tool.

I'll start. Attached are some photos of my little sewing room. Its in a basement and could use some sprucing up but it's a rental and likely poisoning me with Radon gas so I leave it be.

Organization really helps. We all can stand to be better at it but keep up the good fight.

As much as you can afford to, keep a variety of materials on hand. When the creative urge strikes, you are much more likely to go make something if you have some materials on hand.

I find it most helpful to put away my tools and accessories EVERY time I am leaving the shop for more than a few hours. Nothing better than coming in to a tidy workspace to spark creativity.

When purchasing a machine make a budget and then try and double it. You will never wish you bought less machine, in my experience. I have two pretty heavy duty machines and find myself wanting bigger and badder machines. I am ALWAYS on the lookout. Thanks Pine for the hook!!

When you make something and if think you are really gonna like it, try and write down measurements of the pieces used to construct it. At a minimum make sketches. I try and keep large pieces of cardboard around to make patterns. If I really like something I may go as far as drawing it up in Fusion and cutting out patterns on the plasma so that they can be used to cut out material.

If you have industrial machines, make a little thread catch bin on the end of your table. This helps keep the shop so much cleaner.

I will try and continue adding to this thread as time and creativity permits.
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5,204 Posts
Man you guys are making me feel like a fool without his money! I spent so much on damn bags and crap that鈥檚 sewn from trailer tarps lol! That bag looks great! If anyone wants to copy cat a everything bag I just bought a tough river stuff one and could give you all the particulars. Save you 400 bucks!
Dude.. Really ?

Sewn goods manufacturers operate at a pretty slim margin, especially in this day and age of inflation.

That's so not cool.. Nothing against DIY people, I'm one of them, but figuring out something for yourself is one thing..

But cool that you supported Tuffriverstuff, River Rat Ray is a military Veteran, who's been taken down by MS, and is supporting himself by making sewn goods and selling boating gear that's a step above everything else available..

5,204 Posts

Perhaps he hit a sensitive nerve as I have known River rat Ray for going on some 30 years now...

Ray pioneered the everything bag, when he started making them nobody else did, now every Tom Dick and Harry with a sewn goods company is manufacturing them..

To me, and maybe I'm a righteous POS, offering to copy someone else's product and provide the patterns, that's trying to make a business, and took the time trouble and effort to invent and perfect a piece of gear, well it just sits wrong with me..

5,204 Posts
Funny thing is that I just bought some Sawyer Canyon locks that look like a version of your design!
The ones MT4 made have larger balls on top than the Sawyers do, but it's nice to see they make these. Interesting thing is they describe it pretty much like they do the cobra, which I'm not a fan of...
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