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  1. #1
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    Grosgrain considerations

    Oh man, this seems like such a basic question. But as I haven't found a satisfactory answer yet, I'll ask.

    Is there a difference as it relates to strength and durability in grosgrain that I get from RBTR, Dutchware, etc, compared to what I get at Joann's, Hobby Lobby, Walmart, etc?

    I'm specifically thinking about my upcoming tarp project. I have the stuff sitting here, but right after I ordered it, I happened to be at Joann's and found 1.5" wide 'regular' grosgrain (not fancy, wired, or lacey) in a color that seems close to the tarp color I picked. I'm wondering about using that for my tarp ridgeline. Is that stuff on par for strength and durability as the stuff we get from the DIY camping gear material suppliers?

    I admit that I'm quite reluctant to post this question as I have to think it's been asked before. However, searches that include "grosgrain" give A LOT of results that mostly don't apply.

    So I turn to you all, with your vast individual and collective experience-based expertise, for some help.

  2. #2
    Senior Member HoosierT's Avatar
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    Well...here's the thing. The grosgrain that you buy from our vendors is generally Mil-spec nylon grosgrain so in theory, it should be stronger than the Offray stuff from your local fabric store. HOWEVER, a very important caveat to that is that for a ridgeline, you would actually want to use the local stuff. The reason? Because it's usually polyester and you definitely want to use polyester for your ridgeline as it won't stretch as much as nylon. I always use nylon for my tie outs so there's that. At the end of the day, what you really want for the ridgeline is polyester, regardless of where you get it. As long as it's polyester grosgrain and not standard ribbon, it WILL be strong enough for your ridgeline.

  3. #3
    MAD777's Avatar
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    Get your grosgrain from the vendors here on the forum. The stuff in fabric stores is completely different, flimsy stuff. Not even the same product, IMHO.

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  4. #4
    Senior Member HoosierT's Avatar
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    ^^^no supporting info...here is an email directly from UGQ when I posed the same question:

    Hey Tyler,
    We use 100% polyester grosgrain for the binding, there are several places to buy it on the internet.
    >>>HERE IS ONE PLACE<<<

    THANK YOU!!!!
    Paul & Missy
    phone:517-610-0966


    On 2017-01-22 13:49, Tyler Turner wrote:
    Hi,

    Is the edge binding used on your tarps polyester or nylon? Would you be willing to sell just some of this binding?

    Thanks!
    Tyler

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by HoosierT View Post
    Well...here's the thing. The grosgrain that you buy from our vendors is generally Mil-spec nylon grosgrain so in theory, it should be stronger than the Offray stuff from your local fabric store.
    Ah yes, your first thought is one of the things that got me thinking about this question.

    Quote Originally Posted by HoosierT View Post
    HOWEVER, a very important caveat to that is that for a ridgeline, you would actually want to use the local stuff. The reason? Because it's usually polyester and you definitely want to use polyester for your ridgeline as it won't stretch as much as nylon. I always use nylon for my tie outs so there's that. At the end of the day, what you really want for the ridgeline is polyester, regardless of where you get it. As long as it's polyester grosgrain and not standard ribbon, it WILL be strong enough for your ridgeline.
    You know, I'd noticed that the local store stuff is polyester. I wondered about the mixing and matching. I kind of wondered about the stretching.

    Quote Originally Posted by MAD777 View Post
    Get your grosgrain from the vendors here on the forum. The stuff in fabric stores is completely different, flimsy stuff. Not even the same product, IMHO.
    Yup, that's what I wondered. And the purpose for my original question. Do you have a couple of experiences that compare the vendor stuff to the fabric store stuff? Did one fail where another didn't? Or perhaps with somewhat equal wear and tear that the vendor stuff clearly outlived the fabric store stuff?

    Quote Originally Posted by HoosierT View Post
    ^^^no supporting info...here is an email directly from UGQ when I posed the same question:

    Hey Tyler,
    We use 100% polyester grosgrain for the binding, there are several places to buy it on the internet.
    >>>HERE IS ONE PLACE<<<
    Supporting info from one of the respected cottage vendors is a powerful statement. Thank you for sharing.

    One of the things that I understand is that I'm coming to the DIY/MYOG party after the community has become well established. It seems a decade ago, the pioneers here were likely buying stuff from the local fabric stores because there weren't many specialized fabric/component vendors. That leads to two thoughts:
    1) That stuff worked in the past. Was it just good enough because it was the only choice? Or was it truly strong and durable?
    2) Now that we have specialized vendors, they only seem to carry the nylon stuff. Is there a particular reason besides ease or demand?

    Thanks for the replies so far. I'm interested to hear more.

  6. #6
    Senior Member P-Dub's Avatar
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    I have also had excellent results using the grosgrain from https://ribbonfactory.com/store/cate...in_ribbon.html -- lots of colors, styles (e.g., stripes) & sizes, and almost all of it is polyester.

    Glad to see the bbcrafts link too, had not seen before.

  7. #7
    Redoleary's Avatar
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    I have almost exclusively used polyester grosgrain from Joann Fabrics and have never had a problem with it. I have tried to test some stuff to failure and I'm not strong enough to do any damage to it, it will be more than adequate for your tarp.
    Good luck,
    RED

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  8. #8
    Senior Member Flatliner's Avatar
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    ^^^ what he said. I'm not a super expert but I have made and abused quite a few tarps using eBay grosgrain with zero issues at all other than my crappy early drunken sailor sewing. Not always pretty bu still going strong.


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  9. #9
    Senior Member Flatliner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flatliner View Post
    ^^^ what he said. I'm not a super expert but I have made and abused quite a few tarps using eBay grosgrain with zero issues at all other than my crappy early drunken sailor sewing. Not always pretty but still going strong.


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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by P-Dub View Post
    I have also had excellent results using the grosgrain from https://ribbonfactory.com/store/cate...in_ribbon.html -- lots of colors, styles (e.g., stripes) & sizes, and almost all of it is polyester.
    Thanks for the resource. However, it does look like they have a $20 minimum order.

    Quote Originally Posted by Redoleary View Post
    I have almost exclusively used polyester grosgrain from Joann Fabrics and have never had a problem with it. I have tried to test some stuff to failure and I'm not strong enough to do any damage to it, it will be more than adequate for your tarp.
    That's good feedback. I'm specifically looking at what Joann offers because I can take a sample of the material I have and compare colors with my own eyes.

    Quote Originally Posted by Flatliner View Post
    ^^^ what he said. I'm not a super expert but I have made and abused quite a few tarps using eBay grosgrain with zero issues at all other than my crappy early drunken sailor sewing. Not always pretty bu still going strong.
    ^^^ what I said to what he said.

    Quote Originally Posted by IRONFISH45 View Post
    Good question.
    I like the sturdy feel of the grosgrain tape from our vendors. I buy from Walmart/Joann all the same just the price varies significantly.

    One member suggested "Bows & More" not sure of the name, I will amend in A.M. I am very pleased with their Grosgrain, it is Polyester, many colors, fast & reasonable shipping.

    I do wash rhe Grosgrain and dry it before I use it. Just an old fashion precaution agaist shrinkage, color change, or odd reactions.
    I'd never considered prewashing the materials. Interesting thought. Anyone else here who does that?


    I'm feeling better about buying some color matching grosgrain at Joann. And a bunch of the Offray brand they sell in solid colors is Made in USA. That's a nice bonus.

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