Custom DIY straps and tie downs

#1
Does anyone make their own straps and tie downs for various gear?

This recent posted product reminded me of it, but I've been researching the subject a while: http://www.trekboxx.com/fridge-straps

While I'm sure that product is fine for it's intended purpose, it's come up as something I'd like to know how to do in making my own straps customized to the gear I use, possibly even attached to it ready to hook and tighten.

I have a storage project in the works for the back of my Xterra, and part of it will include the use of tie downs to secure cargo without it bouncing around as I travel over rough roads and trails. But I don't want to spend a lot of time rigging and threading my straps around to tie down or get at my gear, or worse having to unstrap a bunch of things to get at one item like I do now.

One particular object I have in mind is my cooler, I'd like to make some custom straps for it I can simply unclip (probably using those toothless cam buckles) and be able to quickly remove my cooler to dump water or re-pack. I typically use ratchet straps, but am left with excess strap, excessive rigging to secure it down, and operating the ratchet itself is usually cumbersome as well as those things like to jam and bind particularly when you want them loose the most.

Working with nylon strap could be handy for clean and quick disconnecting tie downs, replacing RTT fastening straps, roof rack tie down systems, and more. I've seen some various ideas on snaps and hooks, even some using dog collar connectors. By starting out with bulk strap, I can cut to length and dedicate a strap and hardware to an object without ruining my everyday straps I also use on my trailer and roof rack for odd items.

I know you can possibly use a normal sewing machine to make your own straps by sewing a |X| pattern on overlapping strap. Seems reasonable for projects without an excess of specialized tooling (if you have a wife, mother, or aunt with a sewing machine you can use...) Other things to know might be how to cleanly cut and singe the ends to prevent fraying, and hardware for adjustment, snap rings, cam buckles, and so on.

Please post your ideas, tools and hardware used, and hopefully some photos of DIY projects using nylon strap to tie down objects to roof racks, bed tracks, make quick snap connections, etc...


Here are some items I might use: (I have not purchased anything from this particular site yet so don't take this as a recommendation, it's just a place I found with hardware I'm looking at)

Cam buckle: http://www.uscargocontrol.com/Tie-Downs-Hardware/Ratchet-Cam-Buckles/1-Toothless-Cam-Buckle

1" strap hook: http://www.uscargocontrol.com/Tie-Downs-Hardware/Wire-Grab-S-Hooks/1-Heavy-Duty-Wire-Hook

Webbing: http://www.uscargocontrol.com/Webbing/1-Inch-Polyester-Webbing?whence=#37677
 
#3
I use some ratchet straps and some cam buckle type straps. For the rathchet straps I most recently cut off the metal hooks and replaced with small carabiners. I also trim the strap so that there isn't much excess for its intended purpose. The carabiners allow me to clip the ratchet strap to the tie down points and leave it there for the duration of my trip. The carabiner makes it easy in that I am not trying to hold the hook in place and trying to cinch down the ratchet strap at the same time.

With the cam buckle type straps you can typically buy straps for the length you need or simply cut the strap to length you desire.


The other alternative would be simply cut down the straps to length and have a tailor with a heavy duty sewing machine re stitch the straps for you so it is custom length.


Here is a pic from a recent trip.

 
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#4
for either straps or hardware, Strapworks can't be beat: http://www.strapworks.com/default.asp
Thanks! I've already found some hardware there I had not seen elsewhere. Nylon strap in desert tan is one, and metal adjusters and snaps is something else I wanted.


I use some ratchet straps and some cam buckle type straps. For the rathchet straps I most recently cut off the metal hooks and replaced with small carabiners. I also trim the strap so that there isn't much excess for its intended purpose. The carabiners allow me to clip the ratchet strap to the tie down points and leave it there for the duration of my trip. The carabiner makes it easy in that I am not trying to hold the hook in place and trying to cinch down the ratchet strap at the same time.
I haven't tried that, sounds good. I'd be a bit reluctant for now as I have a light duty set and a heavy duty set of ratchet straps I don't really want to hack up since I use them on my utility trailer for various sized objects, but if I get my hands on another set or two I might go that route for some items and just dedicate a strap and cut it to length.

For lightduty holding straps, household sewing machine is fine. Just use the largest thread & needle the machine can handle. Perhaps go over the stitchpattern a couple or more passes. Can be sew by hand also...
I was reading some info on that recently, it sounded like the hardest part was just making the pattern neatly. Be nice to put some custom ends on a strap, I'm looking at some tie down track that you can clip tie down points into and can accept 1" webbing directly. I like the idea of less hardware, no fussing with it just clip one end, snap the other, and draw tight or something.
 

jgaz

Adventurer
#5
This was taken while I was figuring out strap length and buckle placement on my low buck MWC holder. The design of strap has changed since then but this gives you an idea of how I sewed it.


05410BA7-FF6F-453C-8288-0E94BA83DD82.jpg

As others have said, sewing like this is not difficult. I used the largest needle my wife had on hand.
 
#6
Just FYI: When sewing gear for outside use make sure your using UV stabilized threads and webbing, you'd be surprised how quickly materials will breakdown when used outdoors and exposed to sunlight and the elements. Also, bartacking and "x" boxing the end of the Strap will give greater strength. Although, be careful not to over stitch the area since too much stitching can weaken the material.
 
#7
Your local Home Depot should have a "gifts under $x" section set up for the holidays. They usually have their ratchet straps on sale for a great price. And they are decent quality.

I recently ordered a couple of these straps. The cam buckle and strap seem to be excellent quality. They are not for the frugal, but in this case you pay for what you get.

https://www.amazon.com/NRS-1-Inch-Heavy-Duty-Tie-Down-4-Foot/dp/B000GKINDK/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1510933225&sr=8-3&keywords=nrs+straps&dpID=51E33C1VwuL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch


I'm also looking at ordering some of these. They may be good enough to take the place of a ratchet strap.

http://www.uscargocontrol.com/Tie-Downs-Hardware/Ratchet-Cam-Buckles/1-Toothless-Cam-Buckle

https://www.cargoequipmentcorp.com/Tie-Down-Hardware-T-C-S-Buckles-p/603.htm slightly cheaper.

or with straps already:

https://www.amazon.com/Buckle-Strap-Down-2000-Orange/dp/B006J9TNKO/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1510936327&sr=8-1&keywords=tcs+buckle&dpID=51rAFgmgGvL&preST=_SY300_QL70_&dpSrc=srch


Anyone ever use these toothless buckles?
 
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#8
I started making my own custom straps about 8-9 years ago. I started with simple loops that would allow me to use ratchet straps on the footman loops in the back of the LJ I have made gas can straps for my cargo rack, a couple single point rifle slings, dog leashes, etc.. Just using a Singer home sewing machine with a needle made for denim. I'll second the UV stabilized nylon thread as a necessity.

Going to try making some Cordura pouches with MOLLE loops on them someday soon.
 

BEG

Adventurer
#10
Another vote for strapworks. Great prices, lots of options and the ability to do custom stuff. Just know that they don't stock anything. All orders are built when you place it. Here's a whole bunch of 1" adjuster straps with ladder locks and footman loops holding some roof cases (hard to see):

Roof Rack 3.jpg
Roof Rack 6.jpg

They were dirt cheap, quality is great, the company was amazing to deal with and they bent over backwards to get them out to me before my trip. It'll be my go-to for straps and tie-downs, going forward.
 
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#11
Another source that's very good

These are the best I've found and lots of rafting companies use them. You can buy just the buckle, or strap, or a completed one. I usually buy a 25' piece of strapping and a few buckles to make my own. Just take a needle/thread and sew it onto the buckle. Just go through and back many, many times while watching a game, movie, news, etc. I'll take two straps....sew a buckle on one end piece, then a "hook" of whatever type you prefer on the other end of both straps. Now I can place the hook of each strap on my trailer, etc. and place the unbuckled other end through the strap with the buckle. Pull it tight and it takes no time at all.

thttps://www.nrs.com/product/1440/nrs-1-hd-tie-down-strapsie anything down.
 

tlin

Adventurer
#12
NRS - I'm a big fan of their stuff, never had a failure or problem with their straps and plenty swear by their products.

Never done a "diy" strap but am in need of something to help hold my Porta Bote atop my roof rack so I'm glad I found this thread.

Thx for the strapworks link - checking them out now.
 
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#14
Try the "girth hitch" or loop end strap designs, eliminate hooks and caribiners, saves on cost and powdercoat or paint damage. Like this: NRS If you sew with this technique, they stay in place and are super handy. I'd also recommend the Rollercam buckles They pull with very easy tension. Call the company and you can order your own buckles in bulk to sew your own straps. In the raft world we color code our straps often so that our 2' are one color 6' are another and so on. When you look into that bag of straps its easy to find the length youre looking for. pro tip, store your straps of the same length on one of the straps of the same length, keeps them from tangling, by threading all the buckles onto one strap.
 
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