Tag Archive for: strataglass

Sailboat: Dodger, Helm Cover, Winch Covers, Sail Cover

Custom Sailboat Dodger, Sail Cover, Helm Cover, Winch CoversFor this sailboat we created a custom dodger, helm cover, winch covers and sail cover.

Here at Chicago Marine Canvas, everything we do is custom. We use many cost-effective, labor-saving tools that help us speed up the process, therefore you save some money. This also helps us make sure that your cover will fit perfectly when it comes to install time!

The first thing we do to begin our process is journey out to your boat. Once we get Custom Sailboat Dodger, Sail Cover, Helm Cover, Winch Coversthere we use our 3D measuring device to take precise pinpoint measurements. After we gather all of those, we head back to our shop where our designer gets to work. We use CAD (Computer-Aided-Design) Software during our design process. On the computer we can see the thing we can see the design in 3D.Custom Sailboat Dodger, Sail Cover, Helm Cover, Winch Covers

Making sure everything matched in color, we used Sunbrella fabric in the color toast. Sunbrella is one of our favorite marine fabrics to use when it comes to canvas, it comes with 10 year warranty. For all the things we sewed up for this job, we used  SolarFix thread in clear, which has a lifetime guarantee. This means, no more restitching after your new canvas has been out in the sun for a few years! This thread will outlast the canvas it self!

We made sure to add leather reinforcement patches on the forward and aft areas of the dodger where Custom Sailboat Dodger, Sail Cover, Helm Cover, Winch Coversthere would be high amounts of friction on the sailboat. For the windows of this dodger we used Strataglass. Strataglass is the only vinyl on the market that offers a 2 year warranty if it is properly maintained and cleaned.

For this sailboat we also made matching winch covers out of sunbrella fabric as well as a matching helm cover!

Bertram 30′ Custom Full Enclosure

Bertram 31' Custom Full EnclosureFor this refurbished Bertram 30′ we created a custom full enclosure to keep this boat dry no matter what the weather has in store for you.

Here at Chicago Marine Canvas we use many labor-saving, cost-effective tools that help us speed up our process. We first go out to your boat to take precise measurements using our 3D measuring device. Then we head back to the shop and start our design process. We do all of our design work on the computer using CAD (Computer-Aided-Design) Software. Here we can visually see how the new enclosure will look, before we even begin the sewing process, that way we Bertram 31' Custom Full Enclosurecan make any custom adjustments you want. After that, we send the design to our plotter, which is another one of or labor-saving tools, that quickly draws out all the pieces of your new enclosure. This saves our seamstress so much time while also making sure everything is precisely cut and drawn to the right size.

For this enclosure, we used Stamoid  fabric in white. Stamoid is UV, water, and fold resistant. It’s very easy to clean with just water! Check out this video to see Stamoids performance testing videos! For thread we used Solar Fix which is a PTFE  or a Polytetrafluoroethylene type of thread, which is also known as teflon, that  is guaranteed for life! That means you can say goodbye to repairs that involve restitching. With this thread, your seams will last a lifetime! Solarfix doesn’t get eaten by the sunlight, salt water, or other outside elements. For the glass on this enclosure we used Strataglass. For some tips on how to clean strataglass to maintain its life check out this link.

Dodger Window Replacement

Dodger Window Replacement By Chicago Marine CanvasOne of the services we offer here at Chicago Marine Canvas is window replacements. If your windows have yellowed, fogged up, cracked, shrunk, or expanded over time, replacing the glass can fix those issues. This sale boat owner contacted us about foggy, yellowed windows that he needed replaced. One of the first things we do before doing a window replacement is assess the quality level of the canvas. “How many years does it have left? What is your budget?” We have different qualities of glass that we recommend for different quality of canvas. This dodger was in great shape, so we recommended that the customer use a high quality glass that will last as long as their dodger.

Before Image of Dodger Window Replacement By Chicago Marine Canvas

Before image of dodger in desperate need of a window replacement!

For window replacements we usually take the window panel, or dodger in this case, back to the shop and carefully cut out the glass. Then we go back to the boat and snap it back on the boat. After it’s all snapped on, without the old windows, we use one of our labor-saving, cost-effective tools, our 3D measuring device and take measurements of your windows. Once we gather all of our needed measurements, we take off the dodger, and head back to the shop with it. Then our designer gets to work and designs the new windows using CAD (Computer-Aided Design) software, so we can make sure everything looks right. Then we send the designs of the new windows over to our plotter. Our plotter is another one of our labor-saving, cost-effective tools we use here at Chicago Marine Canvas. It quickly draws out whatever we design on the computer perfectly, saving us time and you money at the end of the day! After that, our seamstress cuts out the new windows and gets to work!

Dodger Window Replacement by Chicago Marine CanvasFor these windows we use Strataglass. Strataglass is one of our favorite products when it comes to glass for canvas that is brand new, or in great shape, like this dodger was. It’s the only glass on the market that offers a 2 year warranty! With proper care these windows will outlast its warranty, just make sure that you rinse them with water after you go out on the water, or after your boat has been on the dock to help extend the life of your new windows. Be sure to remove any sunscreen, harmful liquids, or sprays that may accidentally get on the surface.

If your dodger, or enclosure is in need of a window replacement give us a call today! Chicago Marine Canvas is open all year long, ensuring our customers that their boat will be ready to go once the next season begins!

International Achievement Award

2017 International Achievement Award Powerboat Rigid Enclosures Chicago Marine Canvas


           Contact: Chicago Marine Canvas


Chicago Marine Canvas Wins 2017 International Achievement Award


(New Orleans, LA – Sept. 28, 2017) – Chicago Marine Canvas, Chicago, Illinois, was recognized with the 2017 International Achievement Award (IAA) for design excellence in specialty fabrics applications.


Chicago Marine Canvas received an Award of Excellence for its Blarney Island: Keeping the Customers Warm project. The project was recognized in the competition’s Powerboat-Rigid Enclosures category.


For seven decades, IAA has recognized excellence in design and innovation, highlighting truly spectacular work in the specialty fabrics and technical textiles industry. The International Achievement Awards competition is sponsored by IFAI, a not-for-profit trade association who’s over 1,600 member companies represent the growing international specialty fabrics and technical textiles marketplace.


IFAI received a total of 235 entries from 11 countries that were submitted for 42 categories in this year’s competition. Winners were selected based on complexity, design, workmanship, uniqueness and function. Judges included industry experts, editors, architects, educators and design professionals who were chosen for their knowledge in a particular field of study or product area.


All entries receive prominent recognition at the IFAI Expo, the largest specialty fabrics tradeshow in the Americas. Winners receive additional publicity through coverage in IFAI magazines and press releases distributed to media professionals.  


For photos and a detailed project description, visit https://iaa.ifai.com/awards/177746/.


2017 International Achievement Award Powerboat Rigid Enclosures Chicago Marine Canvas

We aren’t your typical canvas shop. Here at Chicago Marine Canvas we use lots of labor-saving, cost-effective tools! For all of our jobs we use our 3d measuring device to help save us time and you money. We do all custom cockpit covers, full enclosures, upholstery work, canvas repairs, zipper replacements, window replacements and vinyl flooring. After we gather our measurements, we go back to the office and pop on the computer and start our design process using our CAD (Computer-Aided Design) program. Here we can easily customize your cover adding windows, zippers and fasteners. Our CAD program takes into consideration the relaxation of the fabric and other variables which would take days, and multiple trips out to your boat to figure out manually. At the end of your experience with us, your cover will fit your boat perfectly. We promise to deliver these solutions on time and within budget!


We work on Sea Ray, Rinker, Regal, Tiara, Maxum, Four Winns, Baja, Cruisers Yatchs, Wellcraft boats and more!!


Need a new cover? Want all of the upholstery redone on your boat? Is your canvas in great shape but your windows aren’t? Do you have a few zippers falling off of your cover? Bimini in need of restitching? Give us a call! 312-487-1133

Sea Ray Full Enclosure

Sea Ray 460 Full Enclosure

This winter we did a full enclosure for this Sea Ray 460 at Chicago Yacht Works.

We love doing jobs like this during the winter because we can really take our time to make sure that everything is perfect for when the boat hits the water in the summer!

When we do custom enclosures we always save you some time and money by using our 3d measuring device to take measurements of your boat. Then we custom design your new cover to tailor to your boats specifications. Here at Chicago Marine Canvas we want your new cover to fit like a glove! We also want to help you keep your boat dry along with it looking nice and modern!

For this Sea Ray we used Sunbrella fabric in marine blue along with GORE tenara thread in black. For all of our enclosure we suggest that you use GORE tenara thread because it has a lifetime guarantee. That means that your thread will outlast your canvas. This also means that Sea Ray 460 Full Enclosureyour seams won’t need repairs the whole time you have this canvas. GORE tenara won’t get eaten by the sun or other elements, which is why we encourage our customers allow us to fabricate their new cover with this high quality thread! Say good-bye to repairs and hello to high quality!

For the forward windows of this Sea Ray we used makrolon which is a semi-rigid polycarbonate. This material is great because it looks as if the windows are extensions of the actual boat windshield. Since it is a semi-rigid material there is no window stretching or contracting due to temperature changes in between seasons.Sea Ray 460 Full Enclosure

For the aft windows we used strataglass. As of September 1,strataglass is the only vinyl on the market that has a two year warranty. For all these panels to stay together we used Lenzip zippers in black which have a lifetime guarantee.



Sundancer Full Enclosure

Sundancer 300 Custom Full EnclosureThis Sundancer 300 was in need of a new full enclosure.

We always begin our process by going out to the boat with our team to take measurements. We use a 3d measuring device that is quick and efficient, which saves us time and you money at the end of the day. After we take the measurements, we head back to the shop to start the design process. We do all of our design work on the computer, making sure to custom tailor your new cover so that it fits perfectly. Once we finish up the design work, we have our plotter draw out all of the patterned pieces for this enclosure. Then we hand it over to our seamstress so they can get to work.

For this project we used Sunbrella in black, GORE tenara thread in black, and Sunbrella binding in black. GORE tenara thread has a lifetime warranty which means no more sun eaten seams. We also used Lenzip zippers in black which also have a life time guarantee.

For the front windows we used Makrolon which is a semi-rigid polycarbonate. The great thing about Makrolon is that it doesn’t sag like other vinyls. It also doesn’t expand or contract in different temperatures that way your cover always look brand new. With Makrolon your new enclosure looks like an extension off of your windshield, making your new cover looking super clean and chic.

Sundancer 300 Custom Full EnclosureThe aft windows on this boat are Strataglass. We used large pieces of glass for maximum visibility. Strataglass is now the only vinyl on the market that comes with a 2 year warranty after install.

We also created large canvas panels in the aft area of the boat, on the port and star side to help with shade while out on the water.

Sea Ray Full Enclosure

This Sea Ray was in need of a new full enclosure, as well as new framing. We went out with Sea Ray With a Custom Full Enclosure Fwdour 3d measuring device and started to get to work. We first took some measurements of the boat so we could make sure the new custom framing would fit the boat properly. After that we headed back to the shop and started working on that first. After we installed the new framing, we brought our 3d measuring device back out to the boat and took measurements for the new custom full enclosure. Then we headed back to the shop to start the design process on the computer. Our designer makes sure to meet all your needs and all the special custom things that your boat may have, so that your new cover can fit perfectly! After we finish the design process we bring the design over to the plotter which helps us speed things up by drawing out all the pieces of the full enclosure. Then our seamstress cuts everything out and starts sewing all the pieces together.

For this enclosure we used  toast tweed Sunbrella fabric, GORE tenara thread, and Lenzip Zippers. Both GORE tenara and lenzip have a lifetime guarantee, which means the thread and zippers are going to outlast your canvas!

For the forward windows we used Makrolon which is a semi-rigid polycarbonate. Makrolon is great because it can’t expand or contract during the summers or the winters, and because it is a harder glass it looks as if you have a extension off of your windshield.

Sea Ray With a Custom Full Enclosure AftFor the aft windows we used Strataglass. Strataglass now offers a 24 month warranty on their products after they have been fabricated and installed on your boat. It is now the only vinyl on the market that has a warranty.

We used DOT fasteners in winter wheat so that they would blend in to the fabric!

Full Enclosure & Sunpad

Sea Ray 500 Custom Full Enclosure FWD View (Makrolon Windows)For this Sea Ray 500, the bridge was constricting the captain, so we raised the framing 6 inches for more headroom.

We also made a new aft frame for this boat so that the customers could have more shade with  their new enclosure. We brought the pole out further towards the back of the boat, so that the bimini could be wider then their last cover.

After we did some adjustments on their framing, we went and took measurements with our 3d measuring device. Then our designer went back to the shop and  started working his magic designing a custom enclosure.

Sea Ray 500 Custom Full Enclosure AFT View (Strataglass Roll Ups)

For this project we used Sunbrella fabric in Captains Navy, GORE tenara thread in black, Lenzip zippers. Both GORE tenara thread and Lenzip zippers have a lifetime warranty. That means they are guaranteed to last longer then your canvas and that the sun and water will not eat away at them!

For the forward windows we used Makrolon, which is made out of a polycarbanate that makes these windows semi-rigid! For the aft windows we used Strataglass. We did roll ups for some of the back windows for air flow when the cover is up. To ensure no water leakage in the roll up windows we used Lenzip’s waterproof chain zipper. 

Sea Ray 500 Custom Sunpad

We also designed and sewed up four separate custom sunpads for this boat. We used Captains Navy Sunbrella upholstery fabric to match the new closure we created for them! These cushions have an Oyster Sunbrella piping around the edges to help create the illusion that these are all one long cushion! They also have two easily removable headrests that have pockets in the back of them for storage so that things don’t go flying away when you are out and about. They are attached to the boat with custom velcro straps that wrap around poles located down each side of the center of the boat. These cushions aren’t going anywhere but where the boat takes them!

Sea Ray 500 Custom Sunpad Detail Of Head Rest

They are made out of active foams dryfast foam. Dryfast foam is an open-cell foam that allows water to go through the foam instead of absorbing it like other foams. These cushions will get dry way quicker if they get wet out on the water or soaked after a rain storm. They also have a white screen on their underside to also help with water drainage along with a large horse shoe shaped zipper for easy removal if the customer wants to throw these in the wash at the end of the year.

Roll Up Window Replacements

A customer came to us with  a roll up window replacement because their windows were yellowing. This can happen over the years, from sun and weather, or even from boat cleaner chemicals getting on the glass.
To replace these windows we used strataglass, sunbrella binding, and lenzip’s waterproof chain zipper.

Our process to do this is to first take measurements of the windows using our 3D measuring device while the old glass is inside the windows still. We could do it this way because the customer said the windows still fit perfectly, they weren’t too big or small when he put them on his boat recently.

After we take the measurements we do the design work on the computer using CAD software. Then we draw out the new windows using our plotting device so they are exactly what we need.

Then we cut out the old windows, removing all the old discolored glass. After that we put down seamstick which is a double sided tape that helps keep all of our sewing holes a little more waterproof. Over time, dirt and outside debris will get in there and stick to the tape, creating a blockage in the needle hole. We put this all along the outside edge of the glass.

Then we put that aside, and we do the roll up window. First we put down the water proof zipper, also using seamstick. After the zipper is down, we put binding we’ve sew up on the front and back of the window, so it looks nice and clean. After that, we sew down the zipper, then we place the new window into the old canvas, and sew it down.





Window Replacements for Cracked Windows

We recently had a customer contact us about possible window    replacements. So we went out to their boat in storage to check out each panel and see what ones we needed to bring back to the shop to replace. Only two windows had makeshift patches on them. The customer used tape and stickers to help prevent water leakage for the time being. This is a great solution, by the way, for  a temporary fix until you can get a hold of your local canvas shop to either ad a patch to the window, or replace the whole window itself with new glass.
There are a couple different ways to do window replacements. It all really depends on the weather, and what shape your canvas is in. If its super hot outside, chances are your canvas has a lot of stretch to it. It’s probably easier to put on your boat because the fibers are more relaxed because of the heat. If it’s colder your canvas will be a little more hard and less likely to be so stretchy.
This canvas was in pretty good shape and looked rather new. Since it’s winter right now and it’s cold, this canvas wasn’t so stretched out. So we were able to do them both in a couple of hours without having to run back out to the boat and take 3D measurements.
So we cut out the old windows out, first using a utility knife to get as close as we can to the edge of the canvas. Then we get in there with a pair of scissors and do the rest of the cutting, the same way, as close as possible to the edge. We want your new windows to look as if, they were magically fixed and like no work was done on them, so this part is very important.
After we cut out the old glass, we roll out the new glass and trace out the old windows onto the new glass. There are a few different kinds of glass you can choose. The differences vary in price and quality, as well as how long it’ll stay clear and thickness. This customer chose Strataglass. So we trace out the old glass onto the new glass to use as a reference point as to where the new window needs to line up, that way it fits perfectly. We carefully add an inch of glass around the line we just traced for a seam allowance. Then we put seamstick, which is a double sided sticky tape on the outside of the window where our seamstress will be sewing. Seamstick is just an extra precaution to help prevent water leakage through the needle holes of our sewing. Over time, dirt gets stuck in the holes, and since theres something sticky underneath, it helps block them up, which helps prevent any water from going through the holes. After we apply the seamstick, we line the windows up in the correct spot and sew them in!