How to Make Enclosure Side Curtains
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How to Make Enclosure Side Curtains

September 3, 2019

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This video tutorial will show the steps required to make your own side curtain enclosure panels.
Every detail from patterning, sewing, and installing zippers and fasteners will be shown.
Making your own enclosure curtains may save you thousands compared to having a canvas
shop to do it. It’s not as difficult as it looks, especially after watching this video.
Purchase all the supplies needed to make enclosure curtains at Sailrite. Let’s get started… To attach our side curtain we will be using
a zipper since our bimini top is made from fabric. If your top is a hard top you may
want to use awning track and rope or fasteners. Installing awning track will be covered in
our “How to Make an Enclosure Aft Curtain” video coming soon. To sew on the zipper the
bimini will need to be removed. Prior to its removal we need to mark the appropriate stop
and start locations for the zipper or zippers. Typically the zipper should stop about an
inch or two away from the frame. This makes it easier to insert the zipper starter pin
into the starter box when installing the side curtain. We have already finished the side
curtain on the port side, here you can see the end of the zipper which stops about 1
inch away from the radar arch. Be sure to mark these start and stop locations on both
the starboard and port sides of the bimini. Now the bimini can be removed and taken to
the sewing table. This finished zipper needs to be the correct length or longer. Here Angela
is checking to be sure the zipper is long enough to be used all along the side of the
bimini. She then flips the zipper to the underside
and will apply a double sided tape called seamstick for canvas to the flange of the
zipper. This seamstick is a ¼ inch width and is perfect for zipper applications because
it is not so wide that the glue comes too close to the teeth of the zipper. The seamstick
will temporarily hold the zipper in place so we can sew it down perfectly.
The zipper has been separated and we will baste the side which has the starter post
or pin to the bimini top. Why? Well, when the side curtain is removed we do not want
the slider to left on the top but rather on the curtain so it does not flop around in
the wind. We are basting the zipper so the edge of the flange is about a half inch away
from the facing strip that has been sewn to the side of the bimini. The distance from
the edge is not too important, except that you want the curtain to tuck under the bimini’s
edge to keep the weather away from the zipper. This finished zipper is too long so we will
cut it to size with scissors at our stop mark. We recommend using YKK #10 Finished Vislon
zippers from Sailrite. Take the left over zipper and match it up with the opposite side
(the side with the slider and starter box). Cut the opposite side of the zippers end off
so the length of zipper is exactly the same as what has been basted on the top. Be sure
to cut the end with the stop and not the starter box. Next cut some 1” binding to a size so it
can wrap around the zipper’s end to make a zipper stop. Then begin sewing the zipper
down starting at this binding zipper stop end. Keep the stitch about an 1/8” away
or more from the zippers teeth to aid in future zipping and unzipping of the slider. The stitch
length should be about 6mm in length. We are sewing this project with a Sailrite
Ultrafeed Sewing Machine. This is a heavy duty portable sewing machine that performs
great for a job like this and is cost effective. In fact a single full enclosure job like this
will easily pay for the machine and more. As is customary when you begin sewing and
end sewing do some reversing to lock the stitch in place. Place a stop on the opposite side of the zipper
that will be used on the side curtain. We will cut the excess of the binding stop
with scissors then to prevent the raveling of the Sunbrella we will touch the ends with
the Sailrite Edge Hotknife. Be careful to avoid touching the top. Zip the opposite side of the zipper back onto
the top. Earlier we used Seamstick for Canvas ¼ inch for the zipper. Now we will use the
wider 3/8 inch on the other side of the zipper flange. This wider seamstick will hold the
patterning material which will be applied in the next step. Install the port side zipper
following these same steps. To pattern the side curtain the bimini top
needs to be installed back on the boat. To pattern we will use 3M filament strapping
tape as a base for our seamstick double sided tape. This strapping tape will make it easy
to remove the double sided tape from the boat when the patterning is done. Our boat already
has snap studs installed for side curtains so we will position the tape approximately
1 inch away from the snaps. The center of the tape should be thought of as the edge
of our curtain. If your boat never had a side curtain you will need to think about the best
location for a side curtain and apply the tape as a frame for its creation. Our side curtain will be zipped to a front
curtain which will be created after the side curtains are finished. So, we need to think
about how we want that forward edge of this side curtain to be created to make the best
zipper junction. Typically most zippered junctions to forward or aft enclosure curtains are at
a corner or very near a corner turn. If your boat never had enclosure curtains installed
be sure to walk around your harbor or marina and take note of how other enclosures are
made. Some of the most amazing ideas can be gained from what others have done. Notice here that the 3M filament strapping
tape is not up against any hard surface. It is simply attached to the front windshield
and then the bimini tubing frame at the top. This will be the zippered edge of our side
curtain where it will join up with the front curtain. Next apply the seamstick for canvas 3/8 inch
wide double sided tape on top of the strapping tape. We will be using Dura Skrim Patterning material
from Sailrite to make a pattern. We have cut an approximate size panel to fit our side
curtain frame, it is larger, but not so large that it is difficult to work with. We like
to start at the top, so to prep for basting the pattern material will be held in place
via a pony clamp at the forward edge. We could do that also at the aft edge, but since this
boat has a radar arch and snaps are installed to hold the bimini top to it we will simply
use a snap to hold the pattern material in place there. The bimini top has hard action sockets installed
to give the snap more holding power. Unsnap the corner snap and lay the pattern material
over the stud and re-snap the top over the pattern material. This holds it in place.
The fastener will snap but it will take a lot of force since the pattern material is
between it. Moving back inside the boat we can now baste
the pattern material to the zippers flange via the seamstick for canvas that we installed
at the swing table. However the Bimini’s forward pocket is not allowing the pattern
material to lay nicely so we will cut a relieve notch in the pattern material until it is
free to lay flat up against the Bimini’s edge. Now remove the basting tapes paper transfer
reveling the glue and carefully baste the pattern in place. We are doing this with only
one person, but if we had a second person on the outside of the boat to apply pressure
to the opposite side of the zipper Angela would find it much easier to quickly baste
it to the zipper. What is so great about using this Dura Skrim
pattern material and seamstick? Well, if you don’t like how it looks you can separate
it easily and re-baste it multiple times. Now that the top of the pattern is fixed to
the zippers we can move to the outside of the boat and baste the rest of the pattern
in place following the same principles. For your information – other videos are coming
soon that will show us working on the front curtain and the aft curtain. The aft curtain
video will use awning track and rope to attach to the radar arch, similar to an enclosure
curtain that may be attached to a hard top. Watch for those videos coming soon for more
on that. A second helper to apply pressure to the backside
of the strapping tape here would be helpful. Now that the pattern is up, but more adjustment
is required, it is always a good idea to cut off excessive overage, which makes the fine
tuning adjust even easier to accomplish. Angela moved back inside the boat to check
the pattern at the top zippers edge. Make any and all adjustments now for a perfect
fitting side curtain. If the pattern looks good and is tight with no wrinkles are hard
spots your enclosure curtain will look great. We are now satisfied with the why the pattern
looks on the boat, it’s now time to mark the pattern. The first step will be to trace a line along
the center of the zipper’s teeth. Use a permanent marker with a fine tip. The line
here at the aft edge is not very straight, but we can fix that at the sewing table. Mark
where the zipper ends start and stop on the pattern. A little secret trick – is to leave
the half of the zipper basted to the pattern, for more accurate marking at the sewing table
later on. We will show that after marking the entire pattern. As is customary a good pattern should be marked
with as much detail about the boat as possible. However, don’t mark so much that you get
confused at the sewing table. Here Angela is marking along the radar arch and windshield
edge. These will not be cut lines, but are for her reference only. She also marks where
the bimini frame falls, this will not be used when making the side curtain, but again is
for reference, if needed. Be sure to make the side curtain “Sout”
for starboard outside surface so when the second port side panel is made you do not
get confused. Draw a line with the permanent marker where you want the edge of the curtain
panel to end. This line should be about 1 inch away from the snap studs that are already
installed on this boat. Angela will also mark where each snap falls on the pattern for reference.
Along the top where the bimini’ edge is she will mark there also. This corner is important
because the bimini has a snap holding it to the radar arch the side curtain will have
to avoid that spot, so be sure to make where that snap is on the pattern. Here along the windshield her line is more
than an inch away from the snaps, that is a preference and not a rule, she wants the
curtain to stop along the bottom edge of the aluminum window frame here. Drawing a line down from the top proves to
be difficult for her to keep straight, no worries, it can be straightened at the sewing
table later on. For reference only she will mark where the
canvas top edge stops. This will not be a cut line it is only for reference. The pattern and strapping tape with seamstick
can be removed. Since the zipper is basted to the pattern we are going to try to unzip
the pattern leaving the zipper attached to the pattern. This will give us the opportunity
to mark the zipper edge more accurately on the opposite side of the pattern at the sewing
table. Because we left the zipper basted to the pattern
we can more easily trace along the teeth on the outside surface of the pattern material.
So, instead of following the line we traced inside the boat along the zipper we can use
this line instead. We can also confirm the start and stop zipper locations. If the zipper
fell off of the pattern, well then you would have to rely on your first marking that was
done inside the boat, not a big deal, but those lines are obviously not going to be
as neat as this new line. Remove the basting tape from the zipper. Since
we want the zipper’s teeth to hang slightly past the top edge we will create a new line
that is down from the main cut line about a half inch. Here on the pattern you can see where the
corner snap was that held the bimini top in place (remember we snapped it over the pattern
material earlier). This snap must be avoided when creating this side curtain, so think
about the best way to finish this corner off. All the edges of our curtain will be finished
off with a 1” binding, one straight or angled edge is much easier to be bound than several
turned edges. Along this forward edge the line was not very
straight, but we know that it is suppost to be straight so we will use a straight edge
here. This is the edge where a zipper will be installed to attach the front curtain,
we will show those steps later on in the video. Cut out the pattern with scissors. Here we are nesting the port and starboard
side curtains on our clear vinyl window material for the best possible usage. Let’s discuss
the differences in our clear vinyl window materials as Angela works to trace around
the pattern. You have some choices in what brand and quality of clear vinyl you can use.
We will start with the best brands Strataglass and O’Sea. These are very UV and scratch
resistant vinyls. They are also very clear, like looking out a glass window. Strataglass
is a little stiffer while O’Sea is softer. O’Sea is chemical resistant while Strataglass
is not. We are using O’Sea 30 gauge for our enclosure curtains. The second best is
Crystal Clear and Regalite both are UV resistant and very clear. Crystal Clear is more firm
while Regalite is softer. For those trying to save money Plastipane 30 gauge is an option,
but not recommended since it is not as UV resistant and not as clear. Remember the cost
of the clear vinyl is nothing compared to the labor involved. It is now time to make the facings for the
curtain. For the underside facing we will use a vinyl fabric called Shelter-Rite, you
could just use the Sunbrella or whatever fabric you have used for the outside surface as the
facing for the underside as well. To install the facings to the edges we could
just make it for the outside surface only, but that would make the inside look kind of
ugly (as you would see hems and double sided tape through the clear vinyl). We are using
a yellow grease pencil to make the black vinyl fabric, as we did when we marked the clear
vinyl. We will create a 2” wide facing strip for
the underside facing. Since we are using a vinyl fabric for this we do not have to create
a hem on the cut inside edge since this fabric will not unravel. If you using Sunbrella for
this facing you will have to use a hotknife or cut the fabric slightly larger to make
a ½” hem. Here you can see we are using a jig with notches
that were created with a dremel tool. These notches are just deep enough in the wooden
yardstick that they hold a tip of the pencil perfectly for easy line striking. When marking
the facing hold the jig so it is perpendicular to the first line as you mark 2” away from
it. This vinyl fabric can be cut with scissors to size. Apply Seamstick for Canvas 3/8” or ½”
width to the backside of the facing strip. Shelter-Rite has a side that is glossy and
a side that is less shinny we think the less shinny side looks best so that will be our
surface that will face out. We find it easier to position the facing on
the edge prior to removing the transfer paper. Why? Because it sticks very well to the clear
vinyl and is a little difficult to reposition, but not impossible. Be sure you know which
side is the inside and outside of the clear vinyl. Apply this inside facing to the inside
surface of the clear vinyl window material. Repeat these steps for each side of the curtain.
All sides will get a 2” wide underside facing strip except the top edge where a zipper will
be sewn at that location, we will use a 1” wide underside facing strip there. Notice that when Angela works with the clear
vinyl window material she tries to keep it on the paper that it was shipped in. This
is done to help protect the clear vinyl from scratches. In some cases I have known customers
to roll out soft fabrics on the working table, like Nauga Soft, (underside up) to help protect
the vinyl window from accidental scratching. If your curtain panels have curved edges,
like this side, making your own facings as shown is a good idea. However, if your curtains
are mostly straight edges you could just use the prefabricated 2” facing that Sailrite
sells. Why are we not using it for this project? Well prefabricated facing is a production
shortcut, but it does not take a curve well, it tends to wrinkle or not lay flat if the
curve is rather abrupt. So, we are making our own facings for this project. We finally are coming to the top edge were
a 1” underside or inside facing will need to be made, same process different measurement.
To save on fabric, especially since the underside facing is not typically seen on the outside,
we will cut the length of this extra-long edge in half at this slight angled corner.
So it will be joined together at this location to cut down on fabric usage that would have
been required if we made this out of one long strip that includes a rather abrupt curve. Here you can see we are going to cut this
facing to about 1” the width of our jib or ruler. Our side curtains will attach to a fabric
bimini via a zipper. If your boat has a hard top it may use awning rope in an awning track
instead. In both cases weather a fabric bimini or a hard top After this half is done we will repeat the
steps for the second half. Here is where we overlapped the two separate strips. Now that
the underside facing strips are completed we can move on and make the outside facing
strips, that’s coming up next. We used a vinyl fabric called Shelter-Rite
for the inside facing strip now we will use our Sunbrella Marine Grade fabric for the
outside facing strips. These are made in the same manner except that they will be a half
inch or 1 inch wider than the adjacent inside strip. This extra width will be used to make
a hem for the inside edge giving a professional finished look to the curtain panel. Here on this jig you can see that Angela will
add 1 inch to make the hem as the inside facing was 2 inches, so these will be 3 inches. We
will be cutting this Sunbrella fabric with scissors instead of a hot knife. Why? Well,
we don’t have to worry about edges unraveling since the inside edge will accommodate a hem
and the outside edges will have a 1” binding installed hiding the edge and giving an awesome
finished look to the curtain panel. Continue this process for each edge. As you make each outside facing strip lay
it over the appropriate location orientated correctly on the curtain to avoid getting
confused when it comes time to baste and sew it in place. When you reach the edge, where the facing
is 1 inch wide I recommend cutting the outside facing only a half inch wider so it will be
1 ½ inch. It is easier to work with a smaller hem than a large one for a facing that is
this small. When we made the inside facing we made this
out of two separate strips, that is because we did not have a fabric long enough to make
it out of one section. This time we do, so we are making it as one whole piece this time.
Next up, basting. Apply the seamstick for canvas 3/8” to the
outside surface of every outer edge. Then apply a second row on that same outside surface
of the clear vinyl directly over the inner edge of the inside facing strips. If you choose
not to use an inside facing apply the second row of seamstick so it is slightly inside
of 2 inches for all the edges except at the top were a 1 inch facing will be applied there
keep it slightly inside of 1 inch for that edge. On one of the short sides, peel off
the outside edge transfer paper from the seamstick reveling the glue. The long sides should be
done only after the two short ends or sides are done, so the overlap at the corners is
the same for all curtain panels. Baste the facing strip in place so the edges
are even, then take it to the sewing machine and sew a straight stitch about 6mm in length
very close to the raw edge. This stitch will be covered by the 1” binding later on. So
be sure it is less than a ½” away from the raw edge. Notice that Angela tries to
keep the paper under the clear vinyl material to help avoid scrapping the window over unprotected
surfaces during its creation. Finish one side at a time before moving on.
So, now that the outside edge is sewn down lets create our hem along the inside edge.
Peel off the transfer paper. This Sunbrella facing strip was made 1 inch wider than the
inside facing strip so we will fold it back under itself so the fold is directly over
the facing strip on the inside surface of the clear vinyl. Cut away any excess from the ends and take
this over to the sewing machine and sew a stitch about 1/8” to 3/8” in from the
folded edge. Notice that we do not do any reversing to lock the stitch in place on these
strips. Why? Because the binding and other facing strips will cover the end stitching
thus helping to lock that stitch in place later on. Repeat these steps this for the opposite short
side. Then repeat the same steps for the two longer
sides, laying the facing over the corners as shown in the video. What does it look like to run out of bobbin?
Well, it looks like this a single thread that is just trailing behind the foot as you sew,
no stitches in the fabric. Time to change the bobbin! Create a hem which lays over the corners and
matches up with the facing strips on the underside. Along this top edge the facing takes a rather
abrupt turn or curve and the hem does not want to lay flat so some relief notches will
be made to the hem allowing it to lay nice and flat. Do not cut past the hem allowance
or it will show up on the outside surface of the facing. Cut enough to allow it to relax. A typical question we get here at Sailrite
is, “can I sew this on my home machine?” Well, many canvas and upholstery jobs that
answer is often yes (depending on the job). However, enclosure curtains like this do require
a heavy duty sewing machine. We highly recommend the portable Ultrafeed sewing machines for
a job like this. If you notice they are sewing through several layers of fabric and the clear
window material easily, just wait until we have to sew the binding on the edge. Now that’s
impressive. Now that all the facings are sewn on cut off
any extra fabric or material that may be hanging over the edges, so the binding will go on
easier. To sew the 1” Sunbrella Acrylic Bias Binding
in place around all the edges we will use the 1” Swing Away Straight Angle Binder.
I do not recommend doing this job with a binder attachment device! No need to do any reversing
yet at the binding or end because a second run of binding will go over the corners. Your
job, keep the assembly feeding consistently inside the opening of the binder attachment.
Let the binder do the job of keeping the stitch straight and the folding of the binding, you
keep your eye on the assembly being sure it is pushed up into the opening so it catches
the edge consistently for the stitch. Let’s go back and show how we set up the
binding for our job. We like to take the roll of binding and place
it on a table with an awl or center post so it can spin as it is being used up. We are using a whole roll of 1” Sunbrella
Acrylic Bias Binding, which is about 300 feet. Why? Buying a whole roll is cheaper at Sailrite
and we used this also for the creating of our bimini and now will use it for every enclosure
panel we make. We used about 90 feet for our bimini and we will likely need the rest for
all the enclosure panel. This edge with binding installed looks great
and has a finished look from the outside and inside. Sew the binding on each edge now. The binding
cannot easily take a 90 degree turn so at any corners overlay the next run so it covers
the previous and do some reversing at that corner to lock the stitch in place. The swing away binder is much better than
a stationary binder because when you want to do some reversing it automatically swings
back allowing the binding to move backwards for short distances. This binder also works
with gradual outside curves, but will not work with inside curves. If you have an inside
curve the nice thing about the swing binder is that it can be swung out of the way so
you can install the binding on by hand with the sewing machine for the inside curve then
swing it back when you reach a straight away. As you can see I highly recommend the 1”
Swing Away Straight Angle Binder from Sailrite. While I am selling the products at Sailrite
lets also discuss the Sailrite Ultrafeed sewing machines. These are excellent machines for
sewing canvas projects like this. They are portable yet heavy duty walking foot sewing
machines. This is the LS-1 a straight stitch model. You will need a heavy duty machine
for enclosure side panels and the Ultrafeed sewing machines can’t be beat for the price
and performance they provide. Get yours today and Do it Yourself and save! Now that all the binding is sewn on the edges
let’s compare the curtain to the pattern we made. It is not uncommon for the curtain
to be slightly larger due to the fact that the binding adds slightly to the size all
around. In this situation it looks pretty good! Using the pattern, over the inside surface
of the curtain, mark the start and stop location for the zipper that is used at the top of
the curtain to attach to the bimini. If you are using awing rope and track (to attach
to a hard top) you would mark for that. Often awning rope attaches to a curtain via a zipper,
but in some cases it is simply sewn onto the curtain. We highly recommend using seamstick for canvas
¼” width to baste the zipper in place. Keep the seamstick away from the teeth as
much as possible (that is why the ¼” width is best).
The zipper will be installed on the inside surface of the curtain, but it is easier to
install it while the curtain is facing outside up. So Angela is marking the outside surface
for the start and stop position and then will flip the curtain so she can see how far the
teeth are protruding from the edge of the curtain. Remove the transfer paper reveling the glue
and begin basting the zipper in place starting at your start position. Be sure that the starter
box is on the correct end of the curtain. You may want to go back to the boat to confirm
that. Remember when patterning earlier on, we removed
about a 1/2 inch along the top edge of the curtain, so our zipper could hang off this
edge more. So the zipper teeth should be just resting up against the binding, as shown in
the video. I know, this is less than a ½ inch, but remember that our curtain grew slightly
after the binding was installed, so it should be just about perfect. We will now sew this zipper in place being
sure to reverse at the beginning and end of our sewing. We will sew directly on top of
the stitch that secured the binding to the edge. Because the zipper is basted in place
we do not have to worry about it moving while we sew, but always keep your eye on it just
in case it comes loose. When we reach the zipper slider stop sewing
a few inches from it and bury the needle in the fabric, lift the presser foot and pull
the slider past the foot and then lower the foot and continue to sew. Since we are using a double pull slider the
tab and the bottom is being stubborn and does not want to slide past the foot. It will,
but you may have to work with it for a while. Coming up next we will install a zipper to
the forward vertical edge so this curtain can join up with the front curtain that will
be made in another video tutorial, coming soon. Since this curtain joins up with a front curtain
we need to install a zipper along the forward edge. We want to protect the zipper from the
elements and spay so we will be creating a Velcro flap to cover the zippered opening.
Since we want the flap to fold back towards the aft of the boat (in an effort to keep
the weather out when underway) we will install Velcro to this side curtain. First use Seamstick
for Canvas 3/8 inch to baste the Velcro in place prior to sewing. The flap will be made
to cover the entire edge so be sure the Velcro covers the entire edge. Flip the curtain panel over to the inside
surface as a finished zipper will be installed there. This zipper should be shorter than
the length of the side by about 2 inches per end. This will make it easier to start the
zipper since the ends are typically an inch or more over frame tubing or a solid a surface
like the fiberglass it snaps onto (for us it’s the windshield). As done earlier the
zipper should be basted in place. This time we want the teeth slightly buried behind the
binding (just slightly hanging out). This will make for a tight fitting adjacent panel
when zipped together hiding the zipper from the elements, even if Velcro closure flap
is used or not. Sew this zipper in place. Since we are sewing
not only the zipper but the Velcro on the other side we want this stitch to be very
close to the edge of the zipper’s flange, as shown in the video. This will put the stitch
closer to the 1 inch Velcro edge on the backside. We also want to start at the end of the panel
to secure the Velcro and the zipper and end at the end of the panel. Then flip and hold the zipper back as you
sew and sew a stitch very close to the fold of the binding this stitch secures the other
side of the Velcro down. Here is what it should look like on the other
side of the Velcro. One more step is all that is required, installing
fasteners. Zip the side curtain to the top first. For us we are using “Hard Action”
sockets with a SnapRite Button ¼” barrel. The hard action socket has more holding power
than a traditional snap socket. You can get these at Sailrite.
Let’s take a look at the inside of the enclosure’s top zipper on the bimini top. We are going to demonstrate two tools to install
the snaps the Sailrite SnapRite System then the Pres-n-Snap Installation Tool. First we
will use the SnapRite System. Take the socket snap and secure it to the SnapRite Socket
Die. Then insert a mandrel through the die from the bottom up. This die can be used as
a positioning system, simply snap it to the snap stud that is already on the boat. We
will start at the bottom corner so we can tension the curtain for the best fit. Push
the mandrel through the fabric assembly. Then we will use the button die on a standard riveting
gun and insert a SnapRite Button with a ¼ inch barrel into the die. Position this button
snap over the mandrel and push it through the barrel into the tool. Depress the lever
several times until the snap is secured well, the mandrel does not necessarily need to break
and may be able to be used a up to three times before bending too much or breaking. The snap
is now secured and we can carefully (so as not to lose it at sea, if you are doing this
while docked) remove the fabric from the mandrel and unsnap the die to be used again. Since our snaps are so close together we will
unsnap this corner snap to position the next mandrel in the fabric (since the mandrel is
so long). Then once in what we think is the correct position we can re-snap the opposite
snap and assess the fit before installing the actual snap. If we don’t like where
it is, we can just pull the mandrel out and reposition it at a different location. This time the mandrel broke, they are expendable
so don’t worry. To use the Pres-n-Snap tool we will need to
mark the location of each snap stud that is installed on the boat. Here we are using the
soapstone pencil to mark the positon directly over the stud. I would recommend marking only
one or two at a time then install them and snap them up before marking more. So you are
position each new snap with the existing snaps already installed for a better fit. Secure the Hard Action socket or standard
if you wish and the button ¼” barrel onto the dies of the Pres-n-Snap Tool. Then position
the tool over the marked location on the fabric and depress the lever until a vise grip closure
snap is felt. Adjustment for that special feel can be done via the knurled knob at the
bottom of the tool. If you are careful you can mark the location
of each snap while the curtain is up and then take it down and install each snap at the
sewing table, but you must be sure each mark is in the correct location if doing this.
You can also use the SnapRite system without a stud as seen here. This side curtain enclosure panel is now complete.
Coming up next is the materials list and tools we used to make this side curtain. Be sure
to watch for new videos coming soon showing the front curtain and aft curtain construction. Here’s a list of the materials we used to
make the side curtains. If you have any questions regarding what type of clear vinyl window
material or about any other products we carry, give us a call at Sailrite, we will be glad
to help! Some powerboat enclosures use a vinyl fabric for the facings instead of Sunbrella,
brands like Stamoid or Weblon Regatta are very popular. If using those vinyl type fabrics
the construction process is still the same as outlines in this video. Be sure to be watching
for two more enclosure videos that are coming soon “How to Make an Enclosure Aft Curtain”
and “How to Make an Enclosure Front Curtain”. If your boat uses awning track and rope the
aft curtain video will be demonstrating how that is used. Watch for them at
or the Sailrite YouTube Channel. For more free videos like this be sure to
check out the Sailrite website or subscribe to the Sailrite YouTube channel. It’s your
loyal patronage to Sailrite that makes these free videos available, thanks for your loyal
support! I’m Eric Grant and from all of us here at Sailrite, thanks for watching!


  • Reply Renee V. March 18, 2015 at 9:22 pm

    Great info….I have a few friends that are using their RVs to even live in full time…this is very applicable.

  • Reply Dan Williams March 20, 2015 at 2:50 am

    Excellent video.  Looking forward to the counterparts to it.

  • Reply Alexander Forstinger March 20, 2015 at 8:55 pm

    TOP, thanks

  • Reply Jorge Peña March 28, 2015 at 8:54 pm

    Hola,un saludo y darle la gracias por la grandes aportaciones atraves de sus videos y aprendiendo cadas ves mas con utedes gracias desde gran canaria españa

  • Reply peggyt1243 March 31, 2015 at 10:18 pm

    Very impressive workmanship.  

  • Reply John O'Connor July 24, 2015 at 3:48 am

    This video is excellent, but boy oh boy you folks make it look SO EASY. Honestly watching this explains why it cost so much to have it done for us! Watching it makes me just want someone to do it! haha

  • Reply Lee Lendon November 2, 2016 at 9:24 am

    Hi Lee here from Hypatek Marine in uk.The work s involved but you can do it .I have learnt a lot from sailrite , sometimes there is a better way and you are always learning. Their canopy positioning snaps are for me as a boat canvas maker a unique tool system that has saved me hours in manufacture .

  • Reply Chris Bowie January 12, 2017 at 10:39 pm

    It must of been Christmas time, I can hear christmas music lol

  • Reply KoKo :* May 14, 2018 at 4:35 am

    What exact sewing machine is this?

  • Reply Nikolas Kostov September 7, 2018 at 10:02 am

    You guys apsolutelly Rock! Theres one thing thats only missing to make 99% to 100%. –

    – Outboard splash cover when boat traveling protect from enviroment and use.
    Looking foward to hear.
    Kind regards
    Nick Australia

  • Reply Joe McFarland December 20, 2018 at 3:18 am

    Sailrite is the best. They provide these educational videos which has made it possible to build my own bimini top, plus their shipping is absolutely amazing – ordered on Saturday afternoon and received materials on Tuesday (this is their standard Fedex shipping). Plus, met with the group at the Annapolis Boat Show and they were one-on-one with me and helped out which was just great. I cant give them enough credit. Thanks!

  • Reply Keyboard Krazy January 6, 2019 at 3:06 am

    Do i need a heavy duty sewing machine for this please? I guess I do i only have a basic home machine. Forget that you answered the question except how much these machines are? I only have one boat to do 😕

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