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Thread: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

  1. #1
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    Default Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    I have some duradon and sundries left over from my last forray into sewing, and still more time on my hands than I'd like to. So let's make something!

    Following along the lines of The Artful Sailor Emiliano Marino. The eyelets are not that great yet, but I'm happy with the rest of it.


    Leather bottom.


    The great thing about handy sized projects like this: You can do them basically anywhere.


    And the number ot tools needed is manageable.
    Last edited by MoritzSchwarzer; 09-19-2020 at 03:48 AM.

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    On to the roping.


    Gratuitous shop cat pic.


    Roping, same as with the eyelets: Not that great, but it'll do. I've done it better before, just been a while.


    And the handle to make it functional. All it needs now is a belt loop.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    You should carve yourself a seam rubber.
    DSC03816.jpg
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  4. #4
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Something like this?

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Quote Originally Posted by MoritzSchwarzer View Post
    Something like this?
    Hiding it under a bushel?
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Very nice bag, thanks for posting.


    Jim

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    Hiding it under a bushel?
    Not by design, no. It had snuck away and cozied up to my leatherworking tools.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Ledger View Post
    Very nice bag, thanks for posting.
    Thanks Jim! Ultimately I want to make a few of these and send them to some friends and shipmates. But this one isn't there yet. I've got a list of nitpicks and changes, so the next one will hopefully come out better.
    And if I really like them I might throw a few up on Etsy and see what happens. Lots of leathercraft and fancywork to be had, but no nautical canvas work that I could find.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    I like the leather bottom! I'd be interested to see you make the grommets, if it's not too much trouble.

    Jim

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Much nicer than the ones I make.
    ​"Life is under no obligation to give us what we expect." Irrfan Khan. RIP

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Wow! Beautiful work.

    How much time does a project like this take?

    We ask because we've had inclement weather for the last few weeks preventing us from working on our build in our yard - we don't have a shop.

    A few projects like your post would be a great indoor task we could do as we wait for the weather to change and while at anchor in the near future.

    Keep posting, we're visually autodidactic boat building people and have learned so much from this site just by reading and studying the posted photos.

    Thanks again for your informative post.

    Stay safe, stay healthy.

    J.
    "Ships are the nearest thing to dreams that hands have ever made." Robert N. Rose

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Looking good! Other handy tools that can be made for doing this type of stuff are two-piece cringle fids. Thay're used for setting brass thimbles inside of tightly woven or seized loops of line. This might be for a clew corner ring or a reef clew on a sail, but can also be used to place a thimble in a middled rope handle of a bag, or even standing proud of a bag's top edge for a rope handle to be spliced into. The old method was to fid the loop, trying to stretch it, and then pull the fid and quickly try to knock the thimble in with a mallet before the loop shrinks back down. This is haphazard at best. With the cringle fid, you load the thimble onto the fid, turn it upside down and through the loop and then tap the fid into a hole in the bench. Once you get to the thimble, it drops neatly into the stretched loop, the fid disassembles, and your cringle is properly "stuck".

    Cringles upper left and lower right. Fids at far right.

    fids-and-cringles.jpg

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Quote Originally Posted by Kapiteinterzee View Post
    Wow! Beautiful work. How much time does a project like this take?
    Thanks! How much time? Depends I guess. This small one took me maybe 5 hours total over a few days, but it's not my first one and I have the tools.

    That said, all you really need to start are the materials, palm, needle, and a fid. And a guide. I started with the Sailmaker's Apprentice by Emiliano Marino, https://www.theartfulsailor.com/ Great book, not as detailed as I would like but it's a good place to start, and beautifully illustrated. There are a few others.

    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Bradshaw View Post
    Looking good!
    Thanks a lot, Todd! Those fids look very handy, I'll have to scrounge out a local wood turner to make me some.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim Ledger View Post
    I like the leather bottom! I'd be interested to see you make the grommets, if it's not too much trouble.
    It looks very salty, and it's great for keeping the thing from collapsing on the bench. The one drawback is that it makes it bulky once you but it on a belt. I'll make the next one with a cloth bottom to compare.

    Grommets. This is basically taken straight from a great out of print ropework book that a rigger mentor turned me on to: Bändsel, Leinen, Trossen (Marline, Line, Cable) by Kai Lund, originally Danish.

    Start with one strand, about 3.5 times the diameter of your grommet. 4 for the small eyelets, so there is enough left over to splice.

    Make an eye, left part over the right, so that the lay lines up.


    First tuck, just like an overhead knot.


    Then you go round, with both parts. The strands need to be under the same tension as they were in the rope originally, so twist the part you make tucks with as you go.
    Last edited by MoritzSchwarzer; 09-21-2020 at 11:41 AM.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Where the both parts meet in the same keep make an overhead knot, right part over the left.


    For the finger sized ones you can just stop there, cut the ends off and singe with a lighter. Bigger ones turn out neater if you half the parts before the splice. Unlay both parts about the width of the finished rope from the point where they meet. Then make the overhand knot, right over left, with the halves that are closer to the knot.


    Tuck the two parts that come out of the overhand knot under the very next strand, no going over and under like in a standard three strand splice. That fills out the gap from the unlaying.

    For anything under say finger thick you're done there, for larger diameters continue halving the strands and tucking. This is basically a third of a long splice. Last important note: for anything over eyelet size the thing will invariably twist on you as you start the third round. That's because you're tightening the lay. To counteract this, build some counter twist into the grommet by making a few small eyes into the big eye before you start to lay up.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Some of the stuff sold as tarred marline (even though it is often just tarred nylon cord) will make pretty nice little grommets. Being a single strand, as opposed to a piece taken from a bit of 3-strand line, it won't have the kinks to work with, but by doing a bit of twisting with or against the lay as you work you can get it to fit together nicely. They can then be over-sewn, hand-sewn-ring-style to make soft eyes, as long as the base fabric is sturdy.

    gro-005.jpg

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Getting back into sailmaking with more ditty bags

    Thanks Todd. I have a roll of tarred marline from Toplicht, I'll give that a try tomorrow.

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