Watched these videos for hours and proud to say I just started sewing my own upholstery with zero mistakes so far! I did end up buying all of my stuff from Sailrite as recommended by others on the forum as their prices are pretty competitive, the shipping was incredible (30 bucks to Canada for a 30 lb box of canvas, overnight!), and their support / knowledge base is second to none.
Nothing like actually watching someone stitching exactly the type of seats, etc I'm looking for and they cover pretty much every marine requirement in the video playlist (I only watched 2 or 3 until I got the gist).
I didn't buy one of their machines...my friends 1980's entry level sewing machine is doing just fine, and chugs through 4 layers of vinyl with thick "lifetime" cord just fine, though I did have to pull the tension to max to get the top stitch to pull tight through all the vinyl.
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=P ... 0ZhSZMg4am
Things I've learned:
-Follow their thread / needle guides for good results (at least in my totally unexperienced opinion)
-When sewing vinyl you want a long stitch length, like 6mm - my machine only goes to 4 and that's fine, but they said go as long as possible if not 6.
-Measure thrice, cut once - the actual sewing part is pretty easy, it's measuring and cutting the "patterns" that takes time and care.
-Don't forgot stitch allowances. I've found it easy to mark the actual stitch line with a sharpie, then just cut ~1cm away. I then use small binder clips to ensure the two (or more) peices of fabric are lined up right along the stitch line, follow the stitch line as closely as possible with the needle, and let the allowance fall where it may.
-Make sure you've planned out EVERYTHING before you start cutting - the exact size of each piece of canvas; how it will all sew together with what dimensions, curves, etc; what trim if any you'll be using; how you'll hide a zipper / fasteners / all of that other fun stuff...
It's actually quite fun, relatively easy, WAY cheaper than getting someone else to do it, and most importantly I'm getting the *exact* seats I want instead of someone else's approximation. Yay!
Will post pics to my build thread as I progress...but the Sailrite videos should be in the knowledge base for sure!