e l ic t r A
M Y T A R P. C O M
SIZING HEAVY DUTY TARPS
It is important to understand the diďŹ€erence between cut size and finished size when purchasing the right heavy duty tarps for a specific job.
hen a job calls for the use of heavy duty tarps of a very
In order to better understand how to purchase the right sized tarpaulin for a
specific size, it is important to understand how they are sized. Having one that is too small can expose stored materials and equipment to the elements, and can lead to damage or loss.
specific job, it is important to know the difference between cut size and finished size, how size can change with use, and which materials are best suited for certain jobs.
Oversized covers can present a problem if the excess material gets caught or pinched. For a truck tarp, if the excess material is left loose and flapping, this can also expose the materials
How Tarps Are Sized And Sold
underneath to the elements.
Heavy duty tarps have two specifications when it comes to sizing. First, cut size is the size of the fabric when it is first cut
but before it is hemmed and manufactured into a finished product. The finished size, then, is
Materials that do not change size are known as size-stable; this is another important term to
the actual size of the finished product after the hems of fabric are folded and stitched and the seams are sewn. The finished size will always be smaller than the cut size. These two terms are important when ordering custom solutions.
know when ordering a custom product.
When placing an order, it is vital to make sure the product will be the correct size after it has been made and delivered.
Since tarpaulins can vary in size during use, it is important to pick the right material and not just the most economical option. As mentioned
They Can Change Size?
above, canvas is not size stable and should be avoided if shrinkage will be a problem.
Some materials are actually known to change size. For example, canvas tarps are susceptible to shrinkage over time. Since they are made from a natural fiber, they tend to contract as they get wet and dry in cycles. It is difficult to precisely predict how much the size will vary, but a safe estimate would be 6 inches or 5% of the longest dimension, whichever is greater. For specific job applications where an accurate size is especially important, canvas is typically not a good choice.
Thankfully, there are many options for size stable materials. Poly, vinyl, neoprene and blue tarps are all size stable choices. Blue polys tend to be a popular choice due to their low cost, light weight, and flexibility in a wide number of uses. Vinyl makes for a stronger material than poly, which is why it is used for truck tarp products, allowing these covers to be used in trucking and trailering. Neoprene is a high strength, high cost material that is resistant to chemicals and works well for high-end use.
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