[pct-l] Sympathy

CHUCK CHELIN steeleye at wildblue.net
Tue May 11 09:43:55 CDT 2010

Good morning, Dave,

You have my sympathy.  I’ve made a shelter tarp, and a combination
tarp/poncho of SilNylon, plus a pair of rain chaps, I-don’t-know-how-many
food sacks, ditty bags, cook pot bags, and other little special bags.  I
don’t like to sew the stuff -- I’d rather eat a bug.

One of the most helpful things I’ve done for myself is to lower my
expectations of having nice, flat, even seams.  The overall results have
always been good, but the seams tend to wander a bit, and often have little
“gathers” due to uneven feeding.  After the item is completed, and lots of
seam-sealer has been slobbered on, the technical irregularities are seldom
noticeable, and most important, the function is not affected.

Another helpful thing is to do the sewing in a peaceful setting when there
are few distractions and little/no pressure to finish the job.  I’ve always
found that sipping an adult beverage during the process helps greatly.

I’ve considered various kinds of tape to keep things aligned but I resist
using any adhesive directly on an area that will be sewed and subsequently
seam-sealed.  I don’t want some questionable residual adhesive goo to
trouble the seal.

My hands are quite dry and my fingers are less-than-nimble so just handling
SilNylon is frustrating.  Sometimes I coat my finger tips with that tacky
stuff that’s used by people who handle and sort paper.  It helps, but I
still avoid touching areas that eventually will be sealed.  Fortunately,
that tacky stuff is water soluble and can wiped off accessible surfaces.

Lastly, I’m glad it’s you doing it rather than me.


Hiking the Pct since before it was the PCT – 1965



On Tue, May 11, 2010 at 12:12 AM, Dave Potter <davepotter at webmail1.co.uk>wrote:

> I am in the middle of sewing my Ray-Way Tarp using silicone coated nylon
> and would appreciate some sympathy from anyone out there who has tried to
> tame that slipper son of a gun material! No matter how I pin it, tack it,
> clip it, staple it those seams keep come out looking like they have been
> sewn in the dark by a drunken man!
> It had better be worth it!!
> Dave
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