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Thread: DIY cost?

  1. #11
    Senior Member JohnSawyer's Avatar
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    I don't DIY to save money. I DIY because I like to fiddle... (ok, I'm a closet gearhead) but I don't want to buy lots of gear...

    I figure my time is cheap, because the time I DIY would otherwise be spent here or watching TV or some other useless activity like sleep...
    "Do or do not, there is no try." -- Yoda


  2. #12
    Senior Member bgraybackpacker's Avatar
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    The feeling of being told Nice Hammock is far better than being told nice tent. Good luck!

  3. #13
    grok's Avatar
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    I love this topic. There is an arc in the graph. Diy to cost ratio. fun vs. time etc.

    My first hammock was made from $12 of rip stop. $5 of rope. I went fancy and bought a military surplus bugnet for $5. I splurged for $20 and sewed two coated ripsop military ponchos together for a tarp. No HF just a few pics on HH to go by. I had never seen one before. First week out. I noticed a guy hammocking out of neccesity. He was using a gathered end sheet, and a blue tarp. I would be hard pressed to say he was more or less comfortable than me.

  4. #14
    Senior Member wirerat123's Avatar
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    DIY example:
    Let's see, $12 of ripstop from Wal Mart, $15 worth of Amsteel (That's quite a bit of Amsteel), $15 thread (That's a lot of thread too), $35 in Silnylon from Noah lamport, Scavenged seat belt material from a junk yard $5, $5 worth of bargain Bin netting materials, $3 for a roll of braided mason line. $90 worth of materials that covers a hammock, bug net, tarp, suspensions. I got my thread injector for $20.

    $110 total, and I have a good thread injector for further projects, still plenty of thread left, quite a bit of Amsteel left over, plenty of materials left to make stuff sacks and such. Learn to do a roll hem and a flat felled seam, and BAM!

    If you consider your free time as extremely valuable, then no, you are not saving money, if you figure that if you weren't doing this you'd be watching TV, or otherwise doing nothing, then you will save quite a bit of money, especially when the more projects you make, the savings go higher with each new creation.

    Or you can drop $200+ on a comperable setup pre made for you, and miss out on the cool factor of getting to tell someone that you made that setup yourself. That by itself has been worth it's weight in gold.

    In my Avatar is a home made hammock that I have at most $30 invested in it's creation. And it's an attention getting in populated camping areas, people are stunned when they find out I made it myself and how much it cost to make. Conversation creator no doubt.
    Fulfillment is living a life that makes the lives of others worth living.
    DIY is addicting and fulfilling!
    "If guns kill people, then pencils mispell words, cars cause people to drink and drive, and spoons made Rosie O'donnell fat."

  5. #15
    Senior Member perdidochas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironridger View Post
    As a Noob I have looked at a lot at DIY projects and checked out sites such as JRB for finished product prices. I have no problem with doing DIY, but was wondering about cost difference. Is DIY less expensive or more of a I did it myself reward?
    Depends on what your time is worth, and your enjoyment of it. Most DIYers do it primarily because they enjoy it.

  6. #16
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    I like good quality gear and have bought (and then sold) quite a bit of it over the last couple years. But what I find I like the best about new gear is tinkering with it and trying new things. I think that's what's best with DIY. You get to make it to your specs, not someone else's. And then you decide what to change and make another. And probably another... ...or two.

    I think if you leave the time=money part out of the equation and look at it purely from an enjoyment/satisfaction standpoint, it's worth the investment in supplies regardless of the end price.

  7. #17
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    One of the factors involved is comparing product quality. I certainly do not dispute that WalMart fabric (when available) is a very legitimate choice for DIY projects. But the quality of that fabric is likely not on a par with the material used by cottage industries or major manufacturers. That doesn't mean it is a bad choice. But let's not compare a hammock built with bargain bin fabric to a hammock built by a manufacturer who needes to stand behind their product.

    I usually try to address this question from an equal established quality aspect. I've slept in Wally World hammocks and would do so again willingly without a second thought. But in no way would I compare my WW hammock to a commercially produced product on a even playing field basis. While in some cases the workmanship of my DIY might be superior to what is available in the US import market that is a matter of my time and so not always relevant to question at hand.

    If the "I made it" factor is not the driving motivation then I think purchasing commercial gear is often a better choice and not much more expensive in the long run. But dag-nab it making it yourself is so much fun and so satisfying for some folks that money is just not an issue.
    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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  8. #18
    Senior Member wirerat123's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ramblinrev View Post
    One of the factors involved is comparing product quality. I certainly do not dispute that WalMart fabric (when available) is a very legitimate choice for DIY projects. But the quality of that fabric is likely not on a par with the material used by cottage industries or major manufacturers. That doesn't mean it is a bad choice. But let's not compare a hammock built with bargain bin fabric to a hammock built by a manufacturer who needes to stand behind their product.
    While a couple of Bargain Bin bolts I have gotten do seem a little fragile, I have yet to see or hear of one of my hammocks failing even under wild child loads, just a couple of stretch marks, but I have 3 bolts at home of 1.7oz calendared Ripstop I got from the Bargain Bin that is every bit the quality of material that comes from any purchased gear if not more so, and is easily equal to some of the fabric I have gotten from Fabric stores for more than double the price. Oddly, I have some non ripstop fabric that I got from the bargain bin that is eerily similar to the Hennessy Fabric.

    I call it my LUCKY find, and there is still two bolts in a Wal Mart near me I am baking on getting, I'll never tell where though :P Actually, it is the Wal Mart in Guntersville if any of you bamians wanna cruise up and get it so it will stop tempting me!
    Fulfillment is living a life that makes the lives of others worth living.
    DIY is addicting and fulfilling!
    "If guns kill people, then pencils mispell words, cars cause people to drink and drive, and spoons made Rosie O'donnell fat."

  9. #19
    Senior Member JohnSawyer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wirerat123 View Post
    I call it my LUCKY find, and there is still two bolts in a Wal Mart near me I am baking on getting, I'll never tell where though :P Actually, it is the Wal Mart in Guntersville if any of you bamians wanna cruise up and get it so it will stop tempting me!
    You COULD just buy it and ship it to a friend in CA... that would remove the temptation...
    "Do or do not, there is no try." -- Yoda


  10. #20
    Ramblinrev's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wirerat123 View Post
    While a couple of Bargain Bin bolts I have gotten do seem a little fragile, I have yet to see or hear of one of my hammocks failing even under wild child loads, just a couple of stretch marks, but I have 3 bolts at home of 1.7oz calendared Ripstop I got from the Bargain Bin that is every bit the quality of material that comes from any purchased gear if not more so, and is easily equal to some of the fabric I have gotten from Fabric stores for more than double the price. Oddly, I have some non ripstop fabric that I got from the bargain bin that is eerily similar to the Hennessy Fabric.

    I call it my LUCKY find, and there is still two bolts in a Wal Mart near me I am baking on getting, I'll never tell where though :P Actually, it is the Wal Mart in Guntersville if any of you bamians wanna cruise up and get it so it will stop tempting me!
    My point is all that is true. But you have no documentation of that. You are getting a "pig in a poke" and it has a lot to do with luck. I've had good luck and bad luck with those fabrics. As opposed to being able to look at the specs of a commercial product and having confidence that i _know_ what I'm buying. But then part of the appeal for DIY is learning enough to be confident in taking that risk. I've been handling fabric for years and so I have a pretty good sense of how something will behave. But without documentation I still just taking an educated gamble.
    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."
    Mrs. Loftus to Huck Finn

    We Don't Sew... We Make Gear! video series

    Important thread injector guidelines especially for Newbies

    Bobbin Tension - A Personal Viewpoint

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