Quantcast

Thread for sewing harnesses

The Rocketry Forum

Help Support The Rocketry Forum:

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423
Just looking for thread sizes and types for sewing harnesses. I have checked out several thread sites that were mentioned here on TRF but I have no idea what the sizes mean. It will be used for sewing tubular nylon and kevlar for level 1 and level 2 birds - less than 10lbs.

I will be using an awl and hand stitching, so coated to go through a machine isn't necessary. So far I have used the thread that comes with the awl, and some kevlar I picked up some time back that I used for harnesses in LPR.

Kevlar, Nomex, Nylon, Hemp... doesn't matter, whatever works and is fairly affordable.

Thanks folks.

Mikey D
 

rharshberger

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 13, 2014
Messages
9,783
Reaction score
1,755
Location
Pasco, WA
I use a heavy dacron fly line backing and upholstery needles for sewing my kevlar harnesses for lighter rockets in the 6-10lb ranges, for the big ones its off to OneBadHawk as his harnesses
are the best!
 
Last edited:

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
12
Highly recommend #69, nylon if the harness is nylon, Kevlar is the harness is kevlar, although sometimes I use nylon thread on a Kevlar harness.
 

Handeman

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
7,766
Reaction score
363
Location
Stafford, VA
I bought a spool of aramid thread that is about the same size and weight as upholstery thread and use that to stitch Kevlar shock cords. I use it in my sewing machine and sew harnesses, chute protectors, deployment bags, etc. Anything that may be exposed to hot ejection gases.

On shock cords and harnesses I use the W patterns as recommended for man-rated parachutes harnesses instead of the standard zig zag stitches or Z type cross patterns that used to be used.
 

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423
Highly recommend #69, nylon if the harness is nylon, Kevlar is the harness is kevlar, although sometimes I use nylon thread on a Kevlar harness.
This is what I was was wanting, an actual size I could easily find.

"Heavy" and "about the size.." is not listed as standard sizes. Lol. But thanks for the info. I have some Dacron fishing line, will have to locate it.

Mikey D
 

Handeman

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
7,766
Reaction score
363
Location
Stafford, VA
Could you provide a picture?
This came from page 186 of the Recovery Systems Design Guide AFFDL-TR-78-151

The 4-Point Cross Stitch is also called the W-W stitch. As the text explains, it is stronger then the old style box stitch.
The zig-zag stitch is used for attaching shroud lines, etc. to canopies. It isn't really the right stitch for making harnesses.

stitch patterns from Recovery Systems Design Guide AFFDL-TR-78-151.PNG

Here's a link to download the Recovery Systems Design Guide. You can just click the orange button and download the .pdf version.
 
Last edited:

Handeman

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
7,766
Reaction score
363
Location
Stafford, VA
This is what I was was wanting, an actual size I could easily find.

"Heavy" and "about the size.." is not listed as standard sizes. Lol. But thanks for the info. I have some Dacron fishing line, will have to locate it.

Mikey D
Here's the Nomex thread I ordered. It is size 69 which is about as heavy as can be used in a home machine. http://www.thethreadexchange.com/miva/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Product_Code=NOM069WHIT04S

The thread exchange as a nice buying guide for Nomex thread here.

Hope that gives you a little more detail and info.
 

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
12
On modern skydiving parachutes shroud lines are typically attached with a bar tack not a zig zig. Some round parachutes still use a zig zag for line attachment.
 
Last edited:

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423

Woody's Workshop

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Aug 3, 2011
Messages
4,284
Reaction score
186
Location
Reed City, Michigan (Lower)
I use several types of needles in my leather crafting.
They are on a really good sale right now.
If you use a threading awl, "THESE" will accept pretty large thread or small leather lace.
"THESE" you do not need to use an awl. I would suggest size 000, Large.
For the price right now, "THESE" wouldn't be a bad set to have on hand either.
 

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423
I use several types of needles in my leather crafting.
They are on a really good sale right now.
If you use a threading awl, "THESE" will accept pretty large thread or small leather lace.
"THESE" you do not need to use an awl. I would suggest size 000, Large.
For the price right now, "THESE" wouldn't be a bad set to have on hand either.
I have all but the second one you posted. I'll just have to locate the curved set. I used to do a bit of leather working myself back in my black powder days.
 

jazzviper1

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 27, 2011
Messages
760
Reaction score
100
Harnesses are sewn with either 5 or 6 cord nylon available at ParaGear USA.
 

Handeman

Well-Known Member
TRF Supporter
Joined
Jan 18, 2009
Messages
7,766
Reaction score
363
Location
Stafford, VA
Thanks. Yes it does. How easy is that size, 69, to use hand sewing? I have an awl and various "yarn darners".
I have no idea how it would work for hand sewing. I only use it in my Singer machine and it works just as well as other heavy duty threads.
 

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
12
#69 might work in a home machine with the right needle. 5 or 6 cord requires a harness machine with a huge flywheel.
 

Coop

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2011
Messages
1,768
Reaction score
3
#69 in hand sewing is simple if using something like the Speedy Stitcher. I have #138 loaded in mine with a small needle (small, relative to the one that comes with it) and it will breeze through three ply of nylon webbing without issue.

I can use #69 in all my machines. I use a #18 needle, usually, with this thread weight, and have to set the tension to 8.5-9 on the one that actually has numbers on the tension dial (the other two don't have numbered dials, so it's set to "max," then backed off a smidge and a half.).

Depends on your machine... would check the specs on whatever model you're using.


Later

--Coop
 
Last edited:

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423
My model is a 1979 Dixon 10 Finger aka, I'll be using my hands. Lol. I don't have a machine.

Thanks again for all the info.
 

Coop

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 15, 2011
Messages
1,768
Reaction score
3
In that case, you forgot more about your '79 Dixon 10-Finger than I ever learned. Heheh. Good luck and be careful: replacement parts for that model are neither readily available nor cheap. Heh.


Later!

--Coop
 

FredA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
2,170
Reaction score
346
I bought this from "thethreadexchange" and use it in my Pfaff industrial bar-tacker.
KEV069NATL02B Kevlar - Size 69 (Tex 60) - Natural - Bonded - 2 Oz Spool - 836 Yards - Strength 23 Lbs
Works great for sewing TN.
Have never torn open a tack - the unsewn TN tears first.
 
Last edited:

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
12
I work less than 5 minutes from the thread exchange. The keep all of the kevlar thread covered to keep the "fluorescent" light from fading it.

If you call and ask they have faded thread at substantially reduced prices, not sure how the strength is affected.
 

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423
Right-O.
Looks like size 69 is where it's at. I'll put some of the Nomex and Nylon, possibly Kevlar, on my shopping list. I'll contact them and see if I may can get a few samples before ordering.

Looks like ParaGear USA maybe a good place to get my tubular nylon as well, good lead - thanks.

I work less than 5 minutes from the thread exchange. The keep all of the kevlar thread covered to keep the "fluorescent" light from fading it.

If you call and ask they have faded thread at substantially reduced prices, not sure how the strength is affected.
Good to know. Will have to look into that as well.
 

FredA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
2,170
Reaction score
346
Interesting about the storage for Kevlar....I've never noticed any fading or change over time and the spool just sits on the machine in the shop under fluorescents. Guess it's good we just move to LED lighting! :)
 

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
12
In my opinion, ParaGear is way over priced.

Trying you local climbing store, kayak store, or REI for tubular nylon............crazy cheap.
 

FredA

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 19, 2009
Messages
2,170
Reaction score
346
I get my TN at my local REI.
The 9/16th wide was $0.30/ft. last time I bought some.
 

MikeyDSlagle

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2013
Messages
2,424
Reaction score
423
By the time I drive to my "local" REI, I would have to buy a few spools to come out ahead, nearest one is in Houston, TX nearly 3 hours away. We don't have REI here in Louisiana. Not much to climb around here and our kayaking is quit a bit different than what you folks with mountains may be used to. Lol. They have 5/8" available online though.

Strapworks has decent prices on 1/2" tubular nylon, but then skips sizes to 1".
 

JohnCoker

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 13, 2013
Messages
1,988
Reaction score
641
This video may be helpful. I have used Kevlar and Nylon thread with an awl.

[video=youtube;UkLopNaQddI]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UkLopNaQddI[/video]
 

dixontj93060

Well-Known Member
Joined
Feb 20, 2009
Messages
13,083
Reaction score
21
Buy a decent sewing machine. They aren't that expensive...
 

Lowpuller

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 23, 2013
Messages
2,230
Reaction score
12
I would recommend buying a used industrial machine, they are so much nicer to use than a home grade machine.
 
Top