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  1. #1
    New Member
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    What are the DIY essentials?

    What are some of the best projects on here? What did you enjoy making (and using) the most?

    I just finished making the insultex under quilt from the sticky guide as my first project, and I'm quite happy with it. I had one heck of a time with that project, but it was 100% due to me having to figuring out how to use a 60 year old sewing machine with no manual, no sewing experience, and no internet at the time. But now I know how! And I'm ready for something else!

    I'm thinking about a mosquito net and a down top quilt next (down will be provided by an old but very large throwaway down comforter I came across). I would love some other suggestions, however.

  2. #2
    samsara's Avatar
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    Whoopie slings, continuous loops, soft shackles, straps, HAMMOCKS! LOTS OF HAMMOCKS (there are many different designs you can do from simple to complicated), portable stands, tarps, stuff sacks, snakeskins... so many things, so little time

    I have been spending a lot of my time making stuff for friends and family (I deliver my daughters TurtleDog stand today)

    Have fun!

    Dave
    "Laying and swaying in a hammock is like a steady morphine drip without the risk of renal failure" - Dale Gribble

    The Florida Hangers Facebook page and the Florida Hangers web page

  3. #3
    Detail Man's Avatar
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    Samsara is right about there being lots of things to make. If you haven't yet, make a hammock or two. Tarps are the next needed item. You've got an UQ. Down is not terribly hard to work with, but do your homework first. Stuffing methods vary and some are neater than others. Don't stuff down anywhere you want to find some of it later.

    Sounds like you've got the DIY disease. Congratulations! The DIY forum is chock full of stickies and tutorials. Scott at http://www.backwoodsdaydreamer.com/diy-guides/ has some good instructions and lots of material to work with.

    What kind of sewing machine do you have? An old Singer?

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Detail Man View Post
    Don't stuff down anywhere you want to find some of it later.

    ...

    What kind of sewing machine do you have? An old Singer?
    That is funny, and yes, an old Singer. Trying to figure out how to properly string that thing without any reference was the most frustrating thing I've ever done.

    I already have a simple hammock, and I tried making one too. My hammock turned out off center when I tied the ends, and oddly enough I like it better that way. It makes a nice chair for two (plain weave nylon instead of ripstop). And I purchased a Gear Guide tarp, so I'm covered on that end too, I think.

    Thanks for the list, Samsara, I'll add a few of those to my list. Also, nice username!

    Do you guys know any websites for tents as well? I wouldn't mind trying to make a small single person tent. The idea of down quilts and a hammock in the winter kind of scares me. I can imagine the tarp blowing loose, my hammock breaking, and all my quilts getting wet at the same time.

  5. #5
    Pag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billybudd View Post
    Do you guys know any websites for tents as well?




    Well, kinda funny at least!

    But now that you mention it, I bet I could fit a turtlelady stand inside a canvas enclosed ground camping unit...that might not be such a bad idea.

    Seriously though, what kind of tent?
    --If a cow laughs hard, does milk come out its nose?

  6. #6
    Brute1100's Avatar
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    On the whole epic insane failure thing... Just get some confidence in your system, use the heck out of it and you will find out as long as your gear selection is thought out and you have looked at your gear in a critical way to make sure its fit for the job.. It will hold you up... Not too many stories of crazy crashes around here... In fact the most common noob story I hear is having a cold butt because they didn't pay attention to the weather...
    Live, Laugh, Love, if that doesn't work. Load, Aim and Fire, repeat as necessary...

    Buy, Try, Learn, Repeat

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pag View Post


    Well, kinda funny at least!

    But now that you mention it, I bet I could fit a turtlelady stand inside a canvas enclosed ground camping unit...that might not be such a bad idea.

    Seriously though, what kind of tent?
    Something that doesn't weigh anything, incredibly durable, and free, of course.

    But no, nothing specific. Just curious if there are any neat designs out there for tents like there are for hammocks on this forum. (for backpacking)

  8. #8
    Pag's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billybudd View Post
    Something that doesn't weigh anything, incredibly durable, and free, of course.

    But no, nothing specific. Just curious if there are any neat designs out there for tents like there are for hammocks on this forum. (for backpacking)
    I think I had physics problems in college with those parameters. There are a couple of designs out there for tarptent knock offs and others for canvas wall tents, but sadly (did I seriously just say that) there is a void in the all encompassing internet for DIY ground dwellers. It probably comes from ingenuitive people liking to sleep comfortably...thus growing hammock DIY.

    Another thing to note, tents are made by many large name manufacturers and if yo do start to plan one you will see how cost prohibitive it can be. I have made several and for the clientele it was OK, but for average people the cost of aluminum poles alone convinces them to head over to REI.

    You could check out backpacking light. There are lots of very creative uncomfortable things to make over there but other than that it's pretty spread out.
    --If a cow laughs hard, does milk come out its nose?

  9. #9
    Senior Member DemostiX's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by billybudd View Post
    < snip>I had one heck of a time with that project, but it was 100% due to me having to figuring out how to use a 60 year old sewing machine with no manual, no sewing experience, and no internet at the time. But now I know how! And I'm ready for something else!

    .
    good choice, a 60 year old sewing machine. Yes, you had to learn the RIGHT way to thread that machine, and to adjust tension, and learn to sew.

    But, the trouble you had is nothing compared to what you would have had trying to use a serger one third the age. <smile> They scare me.

    Some would say, with or without a manual for the serger.

    Congrats on your projects completed and planned.

    On not having a manual: From bicycle culture, it is new to me that manuals are not shared, but commercially scanned and sold instead. Few are posted even on membership user groups. Ownership of copyright and payment of royalties is dubious, and the prices charged for electronic media are outrageous, as much as $20 or more for each manual (the contents of which are unknown to you -- it may or may not include, for example a parts diagram or a valuable maintenance and oiling scheme). I'm looking at a machine for which electronic manualS -- yes, that's plural -- might be $48.

    Congrats and praises, again.

    ---------
    And in answer to OP's question: How about figuring out hoods for the ends of your hammock(s)? a Sil-nylon or DWR triangles or trapezoids to keep rain out of the ends and keep your gear mostly out of the sun and out of sight.
    Last edited by DemostiX; 06-24-2012 at 21:10.

  10. #10
    Detail Man's Avatar
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    Not to divert (at least too far), you can find out about your machine here http://www.ismacs.net/home.html You can look up the serial number to find out exactly what model and date it. They also have manuals.

    I have two old Singers from the 1950s. They are fabulous machines. They will do pretty much all of your DIY needs.

    When you get into deep winter, a hammock sock is the way to go and forego the tarp altogether. Do a search for hammock socks and you find out all about them. Medicine Man did a video of the Roan High Knob hang back in February this year. None of the tarps handled the wind very well, but his sock did great.

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