Jan 21, 2012 at 10:18 am #1284459
I really like the material in these things. I bought a few in a military surplus store. The owner said they were cap stiffeners. Can you id the material? I'd love to buy a few yards of it. I've purchased every type of mesh that I can find and nothing matches up.
(1) It appears to be woven with plastic like threads that are hard like nylon fish line.
(2) The threads are locked into place somehow (glue, heat, ?). I can't even move the interlocking connections if I insert a needle between threads and wiggle it.
(3) Zero (or close to it) stretch.
(4) Lightweight. This 25+" piece weighs ,8 ounces.
(6) Holds shape. Several years of use as a waist belt haven't deformed it or stretched it.
Waist Belt Use
The material, and the shape of this stiffener in particular, are, in my opinion, perfect for waist belts.
The stiffener is shaped like a horizontal section cut from a cone. It fits perfectly as a waist belt for me.
It is as comfortable as any waist belt that I have used and is light, easy to sew, non-stretching, very durable and breathable. It also has a texture that helps it stay in place when worn.Jan 21, 2012 at 10:25 am #1827666
test it with a magnet. Take it to a fabric store and ask the clerk for an identification on it. maybe they have something similar.
Try a garden center, ask for shade cloth. Try local green house and ask them for same thing. Ask to feel their shade cloth used to cover hoop style enclosures. I have used some in the past that is stiff and porous.Jan 21, 2012 at 10:30 am #1827672
I'll try the fabric store idea.
(Note to self. I've been to Seattle Fabrics and Pacific Iron and Metal and looked all over for the fabric. Why didn't I show it to someone and ask them for help? Because I'm a man. My wife would have asked everyone at the store and the horse they rode in on.)
DarylJan 21, 2012 at 10:31 am #1827673
It's just a mesh belt huh?Jan 21, 2012 at 10:47 am #1827683
Stop in a "florist" shoppe and ask them if they have somthing. It may be used in flower arrangements to stiffen somthing or other :)
edit to ask: is the edging magnetic or does the edging have something sewn into it that gives the hat/cap support, maybe aluminum wire or half hard stainless steel.Jan 21, 2012 at 10:47 am #1827684
Yes it is just a mesh belt……but a mesh like no other.
I've made a couple other belts from other meshes and they tend to stretch and wear out.
DarylJan 21, 2012 at 1:52 pm #1827751
@rcaffinLocale: Wollemi & Kosciusko NPs, Europe
Can't ID that stuff exactly, but try some Leno Lock mesh. It is very similar. OWFINC or Seattle maybe. It does meet your specs. Yes, I use it.
CheersJan 21, 2012 at 2:12 pm #1827761
Not exactly what you have shown. Fusible interfacing is non woven but it has some similar uses.
It's an iron-on stiffener used in plackets, collars, and hat brims. There are different weights or you can layer it for more stiffness.
Fabric stores have it.
The mesh you show might have a similar heat set adhesive.Jan 21, 2012 at 2:25 pm #1827766
If the salesman said it was used for stiffening fabric then fusible interfacing is definitely a strong possibility.
Else all the other suggestions of shade-cloth makes sense (also some other types of outdoor/garden fabrics may be similar).Jan 21, 2012 at 2:39 pm #1827773
@retiredjerryLocale: Oregon and Washington
I use fusible interfacing for hat brims. Works pretty good. Iron a piece on both sides, remove backing, turn inside out, iron together. Use thick interfacing.
When I've used thin interfacing or just one layer it's not stiff enough.
Hat brim is so small you can do test pieces to see what works best for you.Jan 21, 2012 at 9:00 pm #1827943
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
File a FOIA request with the Defense Dept.Jan 21, 2012 at 11:02 pm #1827973
That's just cruel Sam. Not only will the FOIA take months to process but the documents will probably come back describing all the gear that the fabric has ever been used on, the missions that gear was used for, and even the identities of individuals that have used the gear, but the material type and source will be redacted!Jan 22, 2012 at 4:07 am #1828009
The man at the army surplus was right. They are used in bdu Abu or acu caps or covers to a. Stiffen the cover and b. form the cover into a more crisp uniform shape. You wear it with your cover to maintain a crisp and defined look.Jan 22, 2012 at 4:29 am #1828012
The man at the army surplus was right. They are used in bdu Abu or acu caps or covers to a. Stiffen the cover and b. form the cover into a more crisp uniform shape. You wear it with your cover to maintain a crisp and defined look.Jan 22, 2012 at 8:56 am #1828074
@socal-nomadLocale: North San Diego county
The fabric looks like heavy duty shade cloth used outdoor nurseries or awnings what you have is Berry compliant fabric. I think it knitted 80 % polypropylene shade cloth.
Here's a link to some:
The shade cloth store also has a softer hand woven version.
Hope this helps,
TerryJan 22, 2012 at 2:48 pm #1828193
Lotta good ideas here. Thanks for the input. I plan to address all of the ideas submitted. I'm only addressing Roger's Leno Loc Mesh suggestion in this post, however.
Here's how the Leno Loc Mesh I have compares to the Mystery Mesh.
(1) The pattern of the weave is similar. Straight threads go in one direction. Twisted threads go the other direction and hold everything together.
(2) Mystery Mesh is about twice the thickness and twice the weight of the Leno Loc Mesh.
(3) Tapping the edge of Leno Loc Mesh on a table sounds and feels like fabric. Tapping the edge of the Mystery Mesh on a table sounds and feels like a rigid piece of plastic.
(4) Mystery Mesh doesn't stretch in any direction. Leno Loc Mesh stretches and deforms when pulled on the diagonal.
(5) It is very difficult to pluck a thread from raw ends or raw sides of Mystery Mesh. It is easier to do so with Leno Loc Mesh.
(6) Perhaps the Mystery Mesh is Leno Loc Mesh using larger threads and then setting the fibers with heat? Just guessing here.
I plan to make a waist belt from the Leno Loc Mesh and see how it works. If diagonal stretching is a problem I can double the mesh with pieces running diagonally. I like that it is half the weight of the Mystery Mesh……..if I can make it work for me.
Hats off to you who have posted suggestions.Jan 22, 2012 at 8:16 pm #1828318
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
Sorry for my dark attempt at humor.
Actually, I have a FOIA request pending with the Forest Service. The Sierra Club site is much more optimistic about the time element. But yes, you are probably right.Jan 22, 2012 at 9:30 pm #1828337
Dan, Dustin and Terry-I ordered some shade cloth. Will report back when it arrives.
Jim and Jerry-My past experience with interfacing (even if layered) is that it wouldn't be strong enough to stand alone as a waist belt. I really cinch the belts up tightly so there is a lot of force there. Do you have some experience that would counter my limited view?
Dan-The entire Mystery Mesh fabric is stiff. It isn't just the edging. There isn't any metal anywhere. I can't recall seeing anything in a florest shop that would be durable enough for a stand alone waist belt. If you have something more specific I'll sure check it out however.
In general, I plan to carry the Mystery Mesh hat (cover, cap) stiffener around with me and ask people (including florests) what they have that might work as well as the Mystery Mesh. I've learned a heck of a lot by asking here so who knows what might turn up next.
Thanks again. I'll report back as I learn more.
DarylJan 23, 2012 at 8:49 am #1828431
@owareLocale: Steptoe Butte
I don't know what it is either, tho it is similar to, but lighter than, the mesh insoles they used to put in Jungle Boots.
It is not shade cloth. I have sewn thousands of yards of that and shade cloth is not that stiff.Jan 23, 2012 at 12:52 pm #1828554
"File a FOIA request with the Defense Dept."
This is not a DoD procured item.Jan 23, 2012 at 1:26 pm #1828563
I forgot about those insoles until you mentioned them. You are right that the mystery Mesh is very similar to them.
Here are a couple of quotes from Wikipedia:
"Removable ventilating insoles made of fused layers of Saran plastic screen, first invented in 1942, were later adopted for the issue Jungle boot. The insoles trapped air which was circulated throughout the interior of the boot during the act of walking; moist interior air was exchanged for outside air using the water drain eyelets."
"In 1942, fused layers of original-specification Saran or PVDC were used to make ventilating insoles for boots, later adopted by the U.S. Army for use in their Jungle boot. PVDC is also used for high-quality doll hair that is valued by collectors for its shine, softness, and its ability to retain its style and curl."
DarylJan 23, 2012 at 1:32 pm #1828565
It's also very much like those cheap seat cushions that used to be sold.
Anyway, I went down to my local MCSS at lunch and got the name of the company that sells the 'hat block' there. I've called the company asking if they'll sell any of the mesh by the yard. I'm waiting for a call back. Will let you know if they ever do call me back.Jan 23, 2012 at 1:44 pm #1828569
@socal-nomadLocale: North San Diego county
I remember those insole I had them in all my work boot because I was stationed In Tropical Kadena AB
Okinawa, Japan annual rainfall 112 inches. If I remember right they were three layers of the material heat pressed to shape of the foot on the edges to hold all three layer together.
TerryJan 23, 2012 at 2:09 pm #1828575
Looks like this company makes a current version of saran mesh. Per Wikipedia, the formula has changed from the 1942 version for health reasons of some sort.
Saran blinds for use in buses and trains might be one source.
This is fun. It is like solving a murder mystery with clues coming in from different individuals.
The "insole" link/clue was a good one.
Edited to show response from this company to my e-mail asking where I might buy some of this fabric:
"Dear Mr.Clark Daryl Thank you for your inquiry as below.This is Ken Wakabayashi of Asahi Kasei Home Products Corporation.We deal our fabric through our export agent.I will pass your mail to our export agent and let them to make contact yousoon.Please wait for a while. Thanks & Best RegardsKen Wakabayashi"Jan 23, 2012 at 6:19 pm #1828702
Thanks for the effort to find a source. It is typical of your participation here.
I expect that a joke might emerge at some point in the process.
I have no idea what MCSS stands for. Marine Corps Supply Station?
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