Feb 8, 2012 at 10:49 am #1285368
I like to use mesh fabric for my waist belts. It is light, breathes well and has some degree of grip due to the fabric construction.
I've made several waist belts from military surplus hat stiffeners which are made from saran mesh. They worked well. Saran mesh is not readily available, however. I've tried several substitutes and here are my impressions of them fyi.
Leno Loc Mesh-Very little stretch in length or width. Does stretch on diagonal. Weighs about 7.6 ounces per square yard. Nylon. About half the weight and half the thickness of the military surplus saran mesh. This is the one I would recommend but I only have about 10 hours of use on the belt made from it so time will tell.
Polyvynal Mesh-Very little stretch in length and width. Does stretch on diagonal. Weighs about 10 ounces per square yard. Coating on internal threads started to wear off after a couple hundred hours of wear.
Not Acceptable Meshes
PB81 Polyester Mesh from Carr Fabric-Stretches in all directions. Weighs about 3 ounces per square yard.
80% Knitted Polyethylene Shade Cloth-Stretches in all directions. Very lightweight.
80% Woven Polypro Shade Cloth-Didn't buy any but website says it unravels if it gets a hole in it.Feb 8, 2012 at 7:34 pm #1836619
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
Have you looked at the polyester mesh that QO and others sell at around 7-8 oz/sq/yd that is available with different sized hex-shaped holes, usually 1/8" or 1/4"?
Osprey uses a similar mesh on their suspended back panels.
Would be interested in any comments or experience you have about it.
Thanks.Feb 8, 2012 at 8:06 pm #1836637
I couldn't find the mesh to which you refer at Quest Outfitters so I don't know for sure if I have tried it. I don't think so, however, given your description of the pattern. I see they have mesh lining and lycra mesh but I don't think that's what you are referring to.
My initial mesh quest was to find saran mesh which I love. It doesn't stretch in any direction and wears like iron. So I bought a few yards of several things that looked like saran mesh and tried them. The closest match was Leno Loc Mesh.
There are probably some other good options out there. I have by no means done an exhaustive search and testing of all meshes.
I could have bought some stuff called saran mesh from Japan but would have had to pony up about $150 for a few yards and gone through a lot of hassle. By that time I had found that the Leno Loc Mesh was working well so I stopped my quest…….for now.
It takes a strong mesh with almost no stretch to serve as a single layer waist belt with no foam and no other layers. Most meshes are too weak or too stretchy. They quickly deform.
DarylFeb 8, 2012 at 8:44 pm #1836651
@scfhomeLocale: Chocorua NH, USA
Quest calls it 'Polymesh,' stock #1201, and it looks like 1/4" hex-holes in their photo.
OWF calls it 'Rawhide' mesh, but notes that the 1/4" hex-holes are polyester, and the 1/8" hex-holes are nylon. So what I have must be nylon, and probably too stretchy for your purposes. But am thinking it will make a nice back panel.Feb 9, 2012 at 10:55 am #1836886
Thanks for the additional info.
With your clues I was able to find a photo at the Outdoor Wilderness Fabric website (downloaded catalog)of the Rawhide Mesh. What an odd name.
I've looked at similar fabrics and decided not to use them. As you suggested, they just don't have the rigid, non stretching feel that seems to be essential for a stand alone waist belt.
My last myog belt, which so far is working well, was made from what I believe owf is showing as "Heavy Leno Loc Mesh".
DarylFeb 9, 2012 at 11:04 am #1836891
If you are wondering about the long-term durability of Leno mesh, I can tell you it is extremely durable. I have a pack I made in 1984 that has leno mesh on the inside of the hipbelt and it shows no signs of wear at all despite considerable use. If you are using lightweight fabrics for the body of your pack I would expect the Leno mesh to outlast the rest of the pack. I can also attest to the fact that it does soften up over time.Feb 9, 2012 at 3:03 pm #1836967
Thanks for the info. This is good to know.
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