Introduction: Quick Backpack for Inflatable Watercraft
The bag that came with my inflatable kayak was very fragile and started falling apart after a year. So I decided to model a simple one after a comercial bag I saw for a discount paddleboard. This is the result. I am in no way a professional sewer and measured literally nothing in the process of building this bag so directions will be for my method of building a bag like this using the boat itself as my measuring tool.
Sewing machine (could do by hand but not something I've ever attempted)
Canvas or other strong fabric(I used a "heavy duty" dropcloth from my local hardware store)
Webbing and hardware for securing webbing should use adjustable ones
Step 1: Figure Out Your Package Size
fold your boat as small as you can get it and place any other objects you want in the main pocket where you want them to be stored in the final package. it is best to avoid putting sharp objects in this area as they will be touching the boat so we will be adding a pocket for the extra paddle poles that have rather sharp edges. my main package includes all inflatable components plus the skeg, pump, anchor, and ends of my paddle.
Step 2: Mark Out Your Fabric
Pic is already cut but do not cut yet.
place your package on the fabric making sure there is about a package length of fabric available on the top and bottom as well as a package width of fabric available from side to side. and mark around the package I used a crayon but chalk would be a much better option.
next, take a large straight edge and extend each line so they make a large cross like the picture closing off the ends of each box.
add a border line of about an inch around the entire shape
Step 3: Time to Cut
cut the border line out. when you get to the inside corners of the cross cut 45 degrees into the inside line so we will be able to fold them in on the next step.
Step 4: Bust Out the Sewing Machine
take all the edges of the fabric and fold the border in half and then back over itself so you wind up with the piece looking like the pic then sew each edge down I used a zigzag stitch for this as it covered the most ground and covered any small mistakes I may have made in the cutting/folding phase. this should make a rolled hem across all edges of the fabric. and just make the end result all that much stronger and prettier.
Step 5: Determine Placement of Hardware
you are going to need 2 fasteners for the sides and 2 for the top. they should be placed fairly close to the corners for the side flaps with the straps positioned further back on the other flap make sure when the webbing is sewen on you double it over for extra holding power. the best stitch I've found for attaching webbing is a box around the perimeter with an x in the center. make sure to use longer webbing than you think you need as when you put this away after a trip on the water the boat may not fold quite as small so the extra webbing will compensate for any difference in the folded size of your boat.
the top and bottom should be similar with the hardware right near the edge of the top of the bag and the extra long webbing about a foot from the edge of the flap
Step 6: Add Backpack Straps
my quick and dirty straps simply consist of two dollar store compression straps made for camping cut in half with the longer end having the hardware sewn to the top of the bag in the same manner as the straps and hardware for the flaps. the bottom strap should be near the bottom of the bag with enough strap to be comfortable when the bag is worn.
Step 7: Now for That Pocket.
if you need a pocket in the bag it is easy to add it in this stage simply grab one of the scraps from the cutting of the main body of the bag. cut to the size you need for whatever items are going to be stored add rolled hems all the way around and choose a spot on a flap that does not interfere with the buckles
Step 8: All Done
Congratulations you just made a super simple and easily modified bag that is better than most of the included bags that come with cheaper inflatable boats. and the best part is you can roll the bag up and it takes next to no space when stored on the boat.
this is an entry in the current sewing contest so if you found it useful I would appreciate your vote :) no worries, either way, tho and happy Making
Participated in the
Sew Fast Speed Challenge