If you go out camping often, it’s pretty much obvious that your tent is made with silicone nylon aka Silnylon fabric. Since this fabric is super light-weight yet so strong, and waterproof that manufacturers make tents using Silnylon and campers love having one. But if the tent tear apart or needs to be sewn, how do you do it?
It’s a bit tricky to sew silicone nylon fabric because of the slippery texture, but you can take the help of pins, wax, or glue sticks to create a tight surface and sew like other objects. To know how to sew Silnylon without a hassle keep reading the details of sewing from this article.
How Do I Sew Silnylon or Silicone Nylon
Silnylon is a ripstop nylon that has been impregnated with silicon. It is extremely waterproof, and lightweight which is about 1.1 oz. per yard, and also long-lasting. This is why ultralight backpackers adore it. Silnylon can be used to make tarps, tarp tents, raingear, and even reusable shopping bags.
However, it’s a little difficult to work with Silnylon to make or sew anything with it. Lots of people hate working with Silnylon because it’s almost like oil to sew. After all, it’s so slippery. Although making your own gear out of Silnylon products is extremely satisfying. A modified felled seam works in these cases.
1. Taut Sewing
To sew Silnylon, use “taut sewing,” which involves applying tension to the fabric with your hands in front and behind the needle. The goal is to tension the fabric rather than pull it through. A walking foot or even feed is a very useful accessory to use with good-quality polyester thread.
2. Select Needle
Use a #80 or #90 needle that is new and sharp. You can use household wax at the edges so the sheets don’t slip when rolled before stitching. Fold and set the seam with an iron before putting it under the sewing machine.
3. Pin It and Sew
For pinning Silnylon, you can use binder clips, glue sticks, and pins in the seam allowance. And for cutting, try hot cutting two layers with a soldering iron and a glass sheet underneath. This will seal your cut edge and keep it from raveling if your two edges are going to be seamed anyway.
How Do You Stitch Silnylon Tarp or Tarpaulin?
There is a machine called a tarpaulin stitching machine and you can use it to stitch your silnylon tarp. You just have to drag the machine along the line of tarpaulin you want to sew and the machine will do the rest. But make sure to keep the fabric in place and not folded somehow.
Frequently Asked Questions and Answers
What should I keep in mind while sewing with Silnylon?
The very first thing to remember while sewing Silnylon or any other super lightweight slippery materials is that they must be sewn while under tension. Do not pull it through a machine but try to keep it tight at all times and pins in the seam allowance quite help a lot.
Can Silnylon be sewn in the rain?
When sewing Silnylon, the needle, and thread create numerous needle holes in the fabric, which can leak in the rain. These needle holes cannot be taped closed, unlike Sil/PU coated nylon or Dyneema DCF, because the surface of Silnylon is too slippery for the tape to adhere to.
What’s the difference between Silnylon and PU?
Some Silnylons are also coated with polyurethane, abbreviated as ‘PU’ as in ‘Sil/PU’, and are best thought of as a separate fabric type because it fundamentally changes the properties of the fabric. When people refer to Silnylon, they are referring to siliconized nylon.
Knowing how to sew Silnylon is pretty is, however, doing it in real is the opposite. Try to secure the edges so well that they don’t come off while you are sewing, otherwise, it will make a big mess. If you don’t have much experience handling these types of fabrics, try to transfer the sewing activity to a professional.