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Thread: Zipper Size??

  1. #1
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    Zipper Size??

    Trying to get all the materials together before I start a DIY hammock and tarp project. I would like to make a bug net/cover. I notice may people using zippers but not much talk about what size is most common or best to use as well as what features to make sure you get when buying. If I missed a thread that covers all this please excuse me and post the link to get me headed in the right direction. Any info on size, pulls, stops, etc.

    Thank you in advance!

  2. #2
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    zippers are sized by the width of the teeth when closed measured in mm. So a #5 zipper is 5mm when the teeth are closed. The bigger the zipper the heavier it is and the less flexible it is. I would not recommend anything larger than a #5 nor would we recommend anything lighter than #3. My own personal preference for gear that gets moderate to hard use is a $5. For things that need to be big but bomb-proof a $10 is almost indestructible. _However_ the choice of sliders thins out above #5. For example I have not been able to find double tab sliders above a #5.

    Sliders _MUST_ be purchased to match the zipper tape. It can be very difficult to find separate sliders after the purchase of the tape so count correctly and make sure you get what you need.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

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    Senior Member Perkolady's Avatar
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    I'm not very hard on my gear, so I usually use a #3 coil. I put those on two hammocks so far. One was large teenager tested last Fall. They're both holding up very well!

    You just need to consider what you'll be using the zipper for. Do you need to zip from both inside and outside of something? Get the double tab (pulls). Are you going to sew both ends into something? Then you won't need a stop (just sew the end into the fabric).

    Usually, if you are calling to order somewhere, they can answer questions to help you get exactly what you need for a certain project if you're not sure. I find the folks at Quest to be very helpful.
    Last edited by Perkolady; 07-15-2010 at 17:13.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Perkolady View Post
    Do you need to zip from both inside and outside of something? Get the double tab (pulls). Are you going to sew both ends into something? Then you won't need a stop (just sew the end into the fabric).
    Terminology can be a sticking point so make sure you know the language your vendor uses. Frequently if you ask for "pulls" you will get a loop of fabric or leather or some such thingie. If you want the jobber that slides along the zipper tape you may need to ask for a slider. Zipper is made in both "coil" and "teeth" formats. For size designation it makes no difference. But coil is "self-repairing" and teeth are not. Sliders can not be interchanged between teeth and coil. zipper "tape" is the fabric the coil or teeth are set into. However it is important to note that not all vendors will use the same terminology the same way. Yep.. it's a jungle out there.

    The other way of ending a zipper so a "stop" is in needed is to turn the tape back on itself at an angle. Stops can be a PITA to use if you don't have the fastening tools.
    I may be slow... But I sure am gimpy.

    "Bless you child, when you set out to thread a needle don't hold the thread still and fetch the needle up to it; hold the needle still and poke the thread at it; that's the way a woman most always does, but a man always does t'other way."
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    Thanks for all the info so far. So if I wanted to use the zipper for a bug net that I would want to put a double zipper in so it can be open/closed anywhere along the length of the opening I would want to use a "coil" style zipper? Correct?

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    Dutch's Avatar
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    You are going to need 2 zipper pulls.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jduck1 View Post
    Thanks for all the info so far. So if I wanted to use the zipper for a bug net that I would want to put a double zipper in so it can be open/closed anywhere along the length of the opening I would want to use a "coil" style zipper? Correct?
    yep, a "make your own length" coil zipper. Echoing Dutch, you want two pulls, each pull having two tabs.

    I've almost always used #3, recently got and used some #2.5 when #3 was unavailable. Hard to see the difference.

    Don't make any tight turns with the zipper!
    Last edited by GrizzlyAdams; 07-16-2010 at 06:49.
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    Thanks again everyone.

    Dutch has been helping me also through some PM's and it all starting to come together for me now.

    If I was to use a zipper and wanted it to be removable I would have to use a pre-made seperating zipper. While reading a post for someone who was making a HH with removable bug net and cover I was wondering why he kept trying to find matching sleeping bags and using the zippers. Dutch just explained why as that is the only way to get a long pre-made zipper

    So the idea pops in my head I can use a regular non-seperating zipper and attach one side to netting or the cover material. Then attach velcro to the other side. The other side of the velcro can then be attached to the hammock. That way netting or full cover can be velcroed on one time at set up and not have to be fussed with every time you get in or out of the hammock and you still have the ease of using a zipper. Yes, it will add a little weight to the overall count, but I am already 220lbs and I would be better off shaving oz. of body weight instead of worrying about a hammock oz.

    What do you all think????

  9. #9
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    If you want two zipper pulls and it to be seperating the end piece has to be long enough for the 2 pulls together. The one I am going to send you will not be long enough for 2 pulls. It will be seperating, but you will not be able to open it up at any given spot like the BB. Not a deal breaker but it means you have to reach over your head to open and close it. If you want it to have 2 pulls and be seperating you will need a special seperating zipper with a long enough end to accomidate both pulls.
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  10. #10
    GrizzlyAdams's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jduck1 View Post
    Thanks again everyone.

    Dutch has been helping me also through some PM's and it all starting to come together for me now.

    If I was to use a zipper and wanted it to be removable I would have to use a pre-made seperating zipper. While reading a post for someone who was making a HH with removable bug net and cover I was wondering why he kept trying to find matching sleeping bags and using the zippers. Dutch just explained why as that is the only way to get a long pre-made zipper

    So the idea pops in my head I can use a regular non-seperating zipper and attach one side to netting or the cover material. Then attach velcro to the other side. The other side of the velcro can then be attached to the hammock. That way netting or full cover can be velcroed on one time at set up and not have to be fussed with every time you get in or out of the hammock and you still have the ease of using a zipper. Yes, it will add a little weight to the overall count, but I am already 220lbs and I would be better off shaving oz. of body weight instead of worrying about a hammock oz.

    What do you all think????
    Someone has done a mod to a Bear Mountain Bridge Hammock bugnet that gives you essentially this. Stock version of the bugnet is "velcro" on all sides. The mod was to embed a zipper.

    On the DIY hammocks I've made of late I tend to make the bugnet separable on 3 sides, have it permanently attached on the 4th side, and be done in such a way that the bugnet can be rolled up and afixed out of the way on that 4th side. For my bridge hammocks the weight of a bugnet is less than 3 oz, and my instincts are that that compares favorably with the weight of all the velcro you'd need to make a bugnet fully separable.
    Grizz
    (alias ProfessorHammock on youtube)

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