Instructables

How To Make A Pretty Nice lined Gun Case From An Old Army Dufflebag and Blanket!

Picture of How To Make A Pretty Nice lined Gun Case From An Old Army Dufflebag and Blanket!
I needed a decent case for my deer rifle, but being broke at the moment, I was having trouble finding what I needed at a price I can afford. Poverty being the mother of all invention, I decided to make one out of a not-so-old Army duffle bag and a blanket that was torn and ready to be tossed. Since I'm sure there are others who can benefit from my experience, and are likely either as broke, marginally skilled, or as cheap as I am, I decided to, at the same time, do my first instructable. This design is also easily adapted to a ski or board bag with additional fabric-basically anything long and skinny could be carried in one of these-So let's get started!
 
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Step 1: Materials

You won't need too much to this project, just the following things:

1. Army Duffle Bag-I used the newer, heavy nylon style with the backpack straps and outer pocket. If you have a canvas bag lying around it will also work-the canvas one I have was my grandfather's from WWII and stank like death anyway, so I used this one I had picked up at my local flea market for about 8 bucks. You can find them on Ebay and from surplus dealers, but shop around because often surplus prices go up and down due to supply on the secondary market at any given time. If you have to pay more than ten bucks you can start thinking about a pre-made gun case-and what fun would that be? Additional fabric can come from a second bag, your local fabric store, or do like I do and keep a constant supply of old nylon bags, webbing and hardware around-you'll never know what you need.

2) Old blanket-this one was a polyester blend, but nice and soft so it won't scratch my rifle or the scope-I'm probably going to end up hanging on to this butchered blankie now, since I am going to do a second bag for another rifle.

3) Heavy duty needle and thread. I used a Dritz needle from the pack shown. My local craft store had these in a pack, and they are usually also available from Cheaper Than Dirt in quantities of 6 or more packages. You can use a heavy sewing machine if you have one and cut this project down to less than two hours. The thread came with a hand sewing awl I got a while back-I thought I would need it for this project but it turned out the fabric was pretty easy to sew with one of the medium-sized needles in the package. Any heavier thread should do the trick, but if you want a nice match look for black or olive drab-it will show through your seams a bit.

4) Yardstick

5) Sharpie

6) Scissors-really sharp ones or EMT-style ones-the fabric is heavy where it is folded over!

7) X-acto Knife

8) Patience (I had the most difficult time finding this)

9) Zipper (optional, size may vary)

ilpug3 years ago
great way to turn something great and durable into something else great and durable. those Military duffels are indestructible, and a great way to protect anything.
ehmbee (author)  ilpug3 years ago
Thanks! I have managed to pick up a few more bags at flea markets and I'm going to make more...
dealydoo5 years ago
I like I like. maybe something to think about. keep the straps and reattatch them kind of like a back pack. I dunno great idea
ehmbee (author)  dealydoo5 years ago
Yeah, good idea-I think I did mention that somewhere towards the end in the photo captions-only thing is they (straps and webbing) are heavy as hell to try and poke a needle thru by hand. There's probably a way to do it that I missed, but now that I have the whole process logged on here I can look it over carefully next one I do. Shoulder straps would definitely make a nice carry, especially if you made one for a snowboard, or if you carry as many guns to the range as I do at one time-I look a little like Neo in The Matrix-at least as far as armaments go. It sure ain't my face.
That looks really nice! I've found that stitching layers of fabric is possible with the help of some needle nose pliers.
ehmbee (author)  JamesRPatrick5 years ago
Thanks-I'm hoping to do an 'ible on how to sew heavy fabric and leather with a drill press as a crude 'sewing machine'-I watched a knifemaker use one to make a sheath for a bowie knife. It's half sewing machine, half sewing awl but it works much faster than the latter. Stay tuned.
That Barret picture makes me drool.
skunkbait5 years ago
I love it. I'm definitely making a few of these!
ehmbee (author)  skunkbait5 years ago
Thanks-I figured I'd rather be TOO detailed than not enough. As soon as I find a heavy-duty zipper I like i"m stitching that in. I'm going to make a few more as well, as I have more than one, ahem, "airsoft".
Yeah, I was thinking about the zipper. You might could scrounge one from a couch-cover, sleeping bag, or even an old longcoat.
ehmbee (author)  skunkbait5 years ago
That's what I'm thinking-I have a pile of old stuff I keep for that purpose-old packs, bags and other gear I scrounge for hardware like D-rings, webbing, etc.-hopefully I have something in the same size. Worst case (pun intended) is I would need to open the seam back up a bit for a longer zipper. Which is no big deal, considering it's easier to get the rifle in and out anyway. Buying one that's strong and durable enough is hard-good ones ain't cheap, cheap ones ain't good. As if I wasn't already busy enough, lol! I should have something by the end of the week, though.