In my part of the world, winter is starting right now.
As I have no basement, and my garage is not insulated, I find myself doing most of my work out in the cold.
I also have a homebuilt electric car, in which the heat isn't the greatest. On top of that, my wife's car has a heated driver's seat, which only makes me all the more jealous!
All of that together got me thinking.... What if there was some way to stay warm both outdoors and on the road?
The answer is the HEATED COAT!
Come along with me as I show you how anyone with basic sewing and electric skills can create inexpensive and WARM workwear for the thrifty Do-It-Yourselfer!.
You can check out my other DIY recycled projects at: http://ecoprojecteer.net/
All of my clean transportation projects (electric car and more) are at: http://300mpg.org/
Step 1: Tools and Materials
To start with, I went to my front closet and pulled out my work coat. This is a 3/4 length coat with a cotton duck exterior and "Thinsulate"-type insulated lining. It's a bit worn, as it is what I wear in the winter to shovel snow, work on cars, and do other physical and dirty work.
That also means I'm not afraid to cut it open and start modding the coat!
For the heating element, I pulled it from a heated back massaging chair cover I already purchased from the thrift store. Most of these devices are actually 12V DC, but they use a power adapter to run them from household AC electricity. Before buying I looked through several of these and chose one with the highest power rating, assuming that it was likely to have the most powerful heating feature. (Cost was $5.00)
Besides the coat and heater, we will also need both sewing items and electrical items. So, break-out BOTH your sewing kit and your electronics kit and have handy items such as:
- Heavy needle and thread (denim or canvas weight)
- Seam ripper / Scissors
- Soldering iron / solder
- Wire Strippers and side-cutter
- Shrink Tube
- Heat Gun
- Infrared thermometer
- Ruler / Tape measure