skinhacker

sewing speed

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This apples to hand sewing.  How long does it take to do a stitched belt.  It takes me over five hours to do a 40 inch belt.  Do you use one thread per side?

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Belts used to take me that long, also. I did it with one length of thread, so the amount of time to pull all that thread through was forever. The further along I got, the fewer "reaches" I had to do. When I finally got short enough to do one pull, it was like heaven!

jeff

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Never done a belt myself, but i'm doing a full sized compendium at the moment, and I'm feeling the pain. I've got just over 500 stitches in total, and doing it all on the one thread. :unsure:

doesnt help that i probably started with too much thread, so its a bit of a ridiculous amount to pull through each hole, but the last couple times i've dont largish items i've started with too little thread, and only made it to the end by the skin of my teeth .

maybe once i eventually finish it, i'll let you know how long it took 

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I haven't hand stitched a belt in a while.  But I wouldn't even think of trying to do one with a single strand.  Pulling all of that through sounds like a nightmare. 

Not to mention it probably weakens the thread being pulled though so many holes.

I would just take 2 arms lengths and start a new one when you're getting short.

Good luck!

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Usually one thread per side and 2 hours.

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Using a single, very long piece of thread for a long item like a belt means you won't have any joins to hide but it will be very prone to tangling, slow and awkward to sew with (for the reasons above), light colored threads will get grubby as you go down the belt and linen thread will fray as you go down the belt.

More convenient is to use no more than a fathom of thread at a time. There will be a couple joins down each side but these can usually be hidden, and most people will never notice.

You can also split the difference between these two methods and use a single longish thread per side, starting at the point each time so the back stitches are hidden at the buckle end. With this method you can go down each side of the belt without any joins, but a shorter amount of thread in play at any one time. You will have to be able to sew forwards and backwards to use this approach.

A normal trouser belt takes me about two hours to saddle stitch, depending of course on its length and how out of practice I am. A similar belt would take about 2 minutes to machine sew. Guess which I do more often?

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Thank you all for the replies.  I had already completed the sewing on the two belts and each one took a full day.  i just can't picture it being done in 2 hours. 

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I've done a couple belts and a guitar case where I took out the old stitches then resewed them with new stitching all the way around. On the guitar case I only removed the bad stitching then replaced it with same color, well almost the same color. customer was happy. the case was worth more than the guitar. Can't do a belt in 2 hours tho, takes me about 5, never use more thread than I can pull at my wingspan of about 5'8" and can never quite use it all as it gets to beat from the in and out.

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Once you get the rhythm down and have your holes made, or at least marked, then an inch a minute is a pretty good pace.  It's possible to sew faster with the holes premade but the total time may be no faster.  It's a good target to aim for.

Obviously if someone is stitching 9 stitches per inch, this pace becomes more difficult but at 5-7 it's realistic.

I try to get each step down to one second intervals: aim awl, stab, insert, pull, insert, pull, tighten, etc.  I try not to rush and to move smoothly.

 

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To clarify the 2 hours I normally do a belt in it is 8 or 10 to the inch and sewn traditionally with the awl and needles held all of the time and leather stitch marked. I may add it has taken some years to get to this speed and lots of practice and I also like hand sewing.

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It usually takes around  4, sometimes 5-6 hrs for a belt, but then again, I'm in no rush to get it done . I find it relaxing perhaps therapeutic doing  hand stitching... ..while I'm watching a DVD :) 

I do around two, sometimes three  ' arms length' of thread   <------- about this long   --------->  depending on the length. 

If I try to rush it, theres the potential of making mistakes. 

HS 

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