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Old 22-06-2009, 16:55   #1
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Tenara Thread on Canvas

I'm making all new canvas for a friends cat (bimini, sail cover, hatch covers etc). I may use Tenara thread instead of polyester, but I'm wondering whether the lower breaking strength (8-10lbs vs 21 lbs for V-138 polyester) and much higher expense make it a viable choice.

Does the Tenara really last as long as advertised? Does anyone have Tenara thread that lasted longer than the Sunbrella?

I would also appreciate opinions on sewing with Tenara. Is it prone to skipped stitches or "birds nests"?
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Old 22-06-2009, 17:44   #2
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There are 3 new generation threads out there. Tenara , solaraine and profilen. I sew exclusively with profilen ex which. Has a comparable size and strength to T138 polyester. I haven't tried solarain yet but my salesman gave me a free sample and will run it through my machine sometime soon. Any of these threads are miles ahead of the standard polyster. With the introduction of solarain the prices have dropped dramatically. I just ordered two lbs black and was surprised to learn it went down 32 bucks a pound. A bit tougher to sew. My machine requires much less thread tension to sew properly. Once set up I've run through large project with no skipped stitches or hang ups. I've heard solarain sews best, can elaborate after trial. Check out new fabrics on market. Sunbrella is way down on my list of favorites, Recracil is newbie on market that advertises 0 stretch with an acrylic. I've been using Marchems topgun mostly. 5x strength of sunbrella, no stretch issues, way more watertight,same 5 year warranty. Ps full time canvasworker
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Old 23-06-2009, 06:17   #3
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Originally Posted by forsailbyowner View Post
There are 3 new generation threads out there. Tenara , solaraine and profilen. I sew exclusively with profilen ex which. Has a comparable size and strength to T138 polyester. I've heard solarain sews best, can elaborate after trial. Check out new fabrics on market. Sunbrella is way down on my list of favorites, Recracil is newbie on market that advertises 0 stretch with an acrylic. I've been using Marchems topgun mostly. 5x strength of sunbrella, no stretch issues, way more watertight,same 5 year warranty. Ps full time canvasworker
Steve
Steve, Thanks for the expert opinion. I'll leave the decision up to my friends since the strength is not a big issue. Based on your input, I think I can get the tension right after some experimenting. I also did full time canvas for 4 yrs so I was a little afraid of "teaching this old dog some new tricks."
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Old 23-06-2009, 08:29   #4
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My wife says once you get the tension right, she really couldn't tell the difference with the Tenara verses polyester. We, okay she, uses it for all our high UV applications, which is almost all of them that use Sunbrella. We have not had any stitch failures yet (4 years and counting on some things). She has no experience with the others cause we bought in two pound spools in several colors, a couple years back.
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Old 23-06-2009, 15:57   #5
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My wife says once you get the tension right, she really couldn't tell the difference with the Tenara verses polyester. We, okay she, uses it for all our high UV applications, which is almost all of them that use Sunbrella. We have not had any stitch failures yet (4 years and counting on some things). She has no experience with the others cause we bought in two pound spools in several colors, a couple years back.
Thanks Keith. We just visited another canvas maker I've known for years and he is also onboard with Tenara for new canvas. I found a nice video on Sailrite website which explains how to set the tension for Tenara and I'm ready to give it a try. Although the thread is expensive, the relative cost compared to the whole project is a small percentage. Fair winds!
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Old 23-06-2009, 17:19   #6
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As above, my wife uses profilen on our canvas projects. Once she got used to the tensioning, everything went fine. Going back to dacron, it is easier to use, but not that big a deal. Apparently, from others, it really does last longer than the sunbrella.
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Old 23-06-2009, 19:02   #7
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Coates guarantees profilen to last longer than the material its sewn into. This includes labor and materials. Properly sewn you will never have a problem with this or the other ptfe threads. Use extra and longer backtacks. The thread is slippery. Ideal conditions are to completely circle your project in one pass, run over where you started , stitch in the ditch for 4 inches or more then backtack. On your way around it doesn't hurt to backstitch before and after material folds ,transitions, zipper starts stops etc... All using a continuous thread.
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