BWCA Flexlite Chair Repair Advice Boundary Waters Group Forum: Do It Yourself Gear
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      Flexlite Chair Repair Advice     



07/13/2021 01:50PM  
My REI Flexlite chair is coming apart where the mesh meets the fabric. I was thinking of making a nylon patch and sewing it to the seat fabric and the mesh. However, I am concerned that putting a patch on the mesh might further damage the mesh and cause it to come apart. Any ideas for this repair?
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07/14/2021 08:46AM  
I have no experience, but I'd look at a duct tape backing and a superglue top coat.
07/14/2021 09:00AM  
My first though was that nylon may not be strong enough. I’m thinking Cordura, and probably matching strips on each side. Sewing through that mech may work, but I’d be concerned about the needle poking through the strands rather than weaving around it. Given where you are, can’t hurt much to try. I would think of adding something between layers of Cordura like ShoeGoo or some stronger adhesive to help keep the loose strands from pulling apart anymore.
07/14/2021 04:14PM  
Mine started failing similarly. After REI refused to replace it, the chair sat in the garage for a couple seasons and was relegated to little kids only before last year when I used a piece of grosgrain to reattach and reinforce the mesh. The chair has since been returned to full adult sitting duty.

So, if you have a sewing machine, 1" grosgrain should be about perfect.
07/19/2021 01:46PM  
My sister-in-law has a good sewing machine that should do the job. I think I will combine all of the suggestions. I have some good fabric that I used for tarp tie-out reinforcements. I will try that with some glue to hold the mesh together (Heck, maybe even some tenacious tape for good measure)
Thank you for your feedback.
07/19/2021 04:15PM  
Let us know how it turns out. We all could be in the same boat some day.
Savage Voyageur
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07/19/2021 06:20PM  
If it were mine I would sew a patch on it with Spectra Power Pro 20# fishing line. Then on the back side I would coat the patch area with CA super glue and then spray accelerator on it to cure it. Any CA glue will be a permanent fix over a patch.
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09/05/2021 10:24AM  
To address the question of sewing through a strand rather than through the gaps, there are sewing machine needles Specifically made for this issue. They should be available at your local sewing and craft store to fit common machines. They are called ballpoint needles, made with a blunt tip rather than a sharp tip. Whoever is your sewing expert should be able to help you with this.
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09/08/2021 07:22AM  
I have had the same issue with my REI chair. To repair I used some 1/2 inch wide military (heady duty) grosgrain from Rip-stop-by-the-role (just who I use for sewing needs) . I sandwiched the grosgrain between the fabric an sewed them back together with some matching color polyester thread. I made several passes with two lines of thread running along each the sides of the separation and one in the middle. It has held for over a year of use. But I am more careful getting in and out now.

I did end up reinforcing all of the stressed seams. The ones that did not pull apart got some fresh stitching on them.
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09/08/2021 02:07PM  
On a semi-related note, it appears that REI changed the fabric design on their Flexlite chairs this year. Or perhaps earlier. Eliminated the mesh and introduced a gap in the fabric on each side. Thoughts?
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