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Sewing your own

Thread Status: Hello , There was no answer in this thread for more than 60 days.
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cjborgert

Well-Known Member
Jul 29, 2001
401
30
118
My Picasso Apnos suit (waist band trouser) would fit perfectly if it were a bit snugger in the waist.

Does anyone have experience with altering his/her own wetsuit by taking it in a touch along the seam? Did your alteration work? How did you do it? What kind of thread, glue, etc. did you use? Did you use a machine or hand sew it? If machine, how tight did you set the thread? Any pointers you would have for someone doing it for the first time?

Thanks in advance for any help you can offer.

P.S. [I've also posed the question to Roger Yazbeck, so will let you know what he advises.]
 

Erik

Well-Known Member
Jan 21, 2001
4,731
753
218
Hi cj, I've done a fair bit of sewing on wetsuits and neoprene drysuits. I've never touched the Yamomoto suit, so I have no experience with that specifically, but I suspect that it would only require a looser knot on the thread, but still a reasonably snug one.
I have found that to cinch up neoprene, you must take out more than you would think, given the stretch factor. This might be more the case with the Yamomoto 45 rubber. After you've cut out the piece, glue and let dry each contact area twice, then once you're ready, put a 3rd coat on, let it get tacky, than stick them together. Use a wetsuit cement, not the high solids drysuit cement, and do not use Aquaseal. Let the suit sit for 20 minutes, then start sewing by hand. Don't sew the interior if it's smoothskin or open-cell. Sew the outside inserting the needle 50% of the depth of the material, ie: 3mm into a 6mm suit. After I'm done sewing, I usually put a thin strip of glue over the repaired area, to help seal it and to stop the thread from "running" if it comes loose at any spot.
It's a hard thing to make that first cut into expensive material, but take your time, do it properly, and you will be rewarded with a nice snug suit!
Good luck, and let us know how it turns out.
Cheers,
Erik Y.
 

icarus pacific

Human-in-training
Nov 7, 2001
2,880
212
0
61
I concur w/Erik, especially w/regards to not using Aquaseal. The Aquaseal's great for bootsoles and the like, but doesn't have the modulus of eleasticity as the parent rubber.

My method is the same as Erik pointed out. I use unwaxed dental floss as the thread and use a curved sailmaker's needle to ease curling the thread in and out of the aterial in a rolling hitch knot- essentially a regular half hitch as when you first tyi your shoelaces. I'd look to make the stitches in from the cut 1/8" no less as the rubber'l pull through the stitch when being stretched.

To help hold the material in place as you sew, put a couple stitches at 2-3 inch intervals before you go the whole way. And I can't stress enough that the cuts need to be clean, straight and primed with glue. The best seamstress in the world can't make a lousy cut look and act like a good one.

sven
 

cjborgert

Well-Known Member
Jul 29, 2001
401
30
118
Thanks!

Thanks guys . . . advice much appreciated. Now I just have to gather enough nerve to cut!

Perhaps I should wait until after the holidays to make sure I don't need to ADD rather than remove material!!
 
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