Wednesday, March 7, 2018

EMERGER FLY FISHING - Cameron Side Bag Material Prep & Sew

When the conversation with Chris Freeman of Emerger Fly Fishing started, it wasn't just about getting a Cameron Side Bag in my hands.  No, this was really more about showing the step by step process of how this handmade gear piece is put together from fabric and leather cuts to assembly to the finish work leaving it ready for the water.

Hands, machine and tools work together to produce something that could honestly last for the next hundred years, likely much longer.  I like that.

As I mentioned in the first T.F.M. post, this and the next post will be very photo heavy with short narratives to explain the work done at each point of the build process of the Cameron Side Bag.  It'll be an easy scroll and I appreciate how in depth these photos cover the steps of the build.

Thanks again to Chris Freeman and photographer Darren Squashic for working together on this show and tell.

Chris Freeman wrote...  "18 ounce waxed canvas.  Nothing new.  Waxed canvas has history on its side and has proved itself for over a century.  The cotton fabric is saturated with wax.  Its extreme durability comes from high abrasion resistance and high water repellency.  When creased, the wax cracks and results in each bag having a unique look as it finishes the production process.  It is long lasting, looks better over time, and develops a patina similar to leather."

"10-12 ounce English Bridle leather. EBL is a fully finished vegetable tanned leather, traditionally used in the equine industry.  It gets lightly stuffed with oils and gets a top treatment of wax to add extra durability and water repellency.  It has a smooth flesh side, which makes it comfortable against the body, and it breaks in well.  It also develops a great patina over time.  We often include blemishes on our straps that are found on the hide as long as it doesn’t impact the integrity of the leather.  It’s great to remember that the cow your leather came from had a story, too."

"A Cameron begins its life as fabric cut straight from the roll and leather cut from a side."

"Any leather that will be sewn directly onto the bag is then prepped.  This includes hand carving the leather keeper on the net slot.  It receives all of the same treatment as the leather for the straps."

"Top stitching (the visible white stitches) is then completed before the bag is ever assembled. This includes sewing on yellow bias tape to the pockets and net slot, as well as heavier green bias tape to the top of the net slot for extra reinforcement. Bias tape protects the raw edges of fabric, both inside and outside of the bag. This also includes sewing internal pockets, sewing on the Emerger tag, assembling all of the zippers and finally sewing and riveting all of the grommeted tabs."

"Lastly, the front leather keeper is sewn on onto the net slot and then riveted in place for extra reinforcement."

"During final assembly, bags are sewn together in three main pieces.  The front panel, the back panel, and the perimeter (side panels with pockets, bottom panel and zipper panel).  Bags also get sewn wrong side out. Lastly, bias tape is added to the internal seams to protect raw edges.  We use 10 oz. waxed canvas for our tape. It helps add an internal frame to the bag to aid in supporting the weight of carrying the net on front, and it adds one more layer of water repellency to the bag."

"The bag is finally turned right side out and checked over one last time for any flaw or bad seams."

Like what you see?  Visit the Emerger Fly Fishing website for more information and be sure to follow along on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest shop news and product releases.

If you decide to place an order this week, remember to use the discount code of "TFM10" for 10% off your order.  Code is good on all online orders through Sunday. 

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