Monday, April 23, 2018

CJ7 Cab Cover

Needed a cover to keep the rain and dew out of the interior while camping in the North Carolina woods.  Having a bolt of Sunbrella that I bartered some antique "church keys" for, I decided to try to make one...

Sunbrella - 60" x 25'
Thread - Tex 138 Bonded Nylon
Double Sided Tape #129

Needle - #20
Painter's Tape

Lay out two 60" x 152" panels of fabric.

Line up long edges.  Using double sided tape, baste good sides facing each other.  One long edge only.

Had to open up the machine to drop the presser foot bar for the fabric feed group.  Installed the presser foot, needle feed dog and lower feed dog.  Here I'm setting the stitch length, stitch tension, and presser foot pressure.

Flat felled the seam between the two 60" panels.  Centered the seam on the roll bar.  Next is to mark the pleats at the windshield.

Here I rolled the fabric at the edges of the windshield and held it there with some spring clamps.  I then used a wax seam marker to mark the edge of the windshield frame on either side of the dart.

Note that after centering the main seam on the roll bar, I taped the fabric at the bottom of the windshield frame before gathering the material for the darts.  This kept the cover square on the jeep and provided some tension to pull against when marking the darts.

Marked straight lines for the dart seam and then added 5/8" seam allowance.

Cut the fabric on the seam allowance lines and marked the apex of the dart on the back side of the fabric.

Marked the seam allowance for a double rolled seam across the bottom of the windshield frame and used two sided tape to help hold it in place for sewing.

Taped the cover back on the Jeep and clamped at the wheel wells to mark the dart running from the roll bar to the corner of the tub.  Gathered, clamped, and marked as before.

Sewed from the corner of the tub up to the apex of the dart.

Put the cover on the Jeep and marked from the corner of the tub to the corner of the taillight and continued sewing the dart.  Then put the cover back on the Jeep and marked from top corner of the taillight diagonally to the bottom corner of the taillight and sewed again.

Using painters tape to position the cover on the Jeep and to provide some tension, I proceeded to outline the tub on the fabric.

I then marked the seam locations and added for the 1" double rolled hem.

Decided to come up at an angle from below the door well to a horizontal line above the wheel well to the back corner of the tub.  To mark the rear hems, I'll need to actually tension the top in place so decided to make the 6 shock cord attach points (2 on each side under the door well and 1 at each taillight).

Took two strips of 2" webbing, overlapped it, to end up with a 3" wide panel as a backing to the 1" webbing strips that will anchor the D-rings.  Decided to use two D-rings, one vertical for use with a hook, and one horizontal allowing the shock cord to be tied on.

Made a wrap for the D-ring panel out of the matching Sunbrella.  Here it is cut out and marked for the folds.  The corners were clipped off to reduce bulk.

The attach panel ready to be sewn.

 Cut some 1/4" shock cord and used some adjustable cord hooks.  Here are a couple of shots of the cover on our recent trip.  

This took longer than I thought, but it fits pretty well, and worked like a charm.  I may add another D-ring attach point just ahead of the spare tire to prevent a heavy rain from pooling on the cover allowing water to fill the tub.  If I do, I'll add a photo later.

Hope you found this useful.

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