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Messages - Mojo

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The Business Of Upholstery / Big Changes for 2020
« on: December 26, 2019, 07:28:36 AM »
It has been a while since I have given an update on all of our companies. Now would be appropriate as 2020 is ushering in some big changes
for me as well as the companies.

To bring you all up to date we formed another company - Throgmartin Holdings, last summer. This company was formed to own the new building, own all of our various trademarks and intellectual property and will be used for future real estate deals and developments. Stone Vos is still going strong and we formed a division under that to handle sales and installation on our residential and commercial awning systems. Talin Manufacturing just had a banner year with sales up 150 %. We formed 2 divisions under Talin Manufacturing - 1.) Parts sales 2.) RV service.

We have added more staff and now have an executive director who helps my wife oversee all companies. We also have a shop manager for Stone Vos and a service manager as well. I have got the Talin operations manager trained and up to speed and just promoted her to Director. She will be in charge of manufacturing, the parts division and the service division. In other words she will be the big boss and take my place.

But the big change is I have announced my retirement effective Jan 1. I will spend 1 hour a day at the office but will no longer have any hand in the day to day operations. I will continue to do shows and events, handle marketing and PR but will spend my days looking for new adventures outside the RV industry, mainly commercial and business development. We have assembled an awesome team of managers and employees which is making this all possible. I will always be around to consult to them or if problems arise but I am handing the companies operations off to them to run and grow.

I plan on getting back to my hobbies - woodworking and horses. A few of you know I am also a junkie pilot. I have several exotic aircraft I want to fly in 2020 so will spend a little more time in the cockpit. I have simulator time set for the 737-800 and the Airbus 320 and flight time scheduled for the T-6 Texan and Curtiss P-40 warhawk fighter. So there you have it. Come January 1 this old fart is packing up and heading in a new direction.
It is time as I am I am burnt out, need to slow down, stop and smell the roses and pursue some hobbies while I still can.

Press Release: https://rv-pro.com/news/throgmartin-holdings-president-retire-jan-1?utm_source=SilverpopMailing&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=20191223%20RVP%20ENEWS%20(1)&utm_content=&spMailingID=22624233&spUserID=NjE3MjYxMTUxOTYzS0&spJobID=1641601232&spReportId=MTY0MTYwMTIzMgS2

Here's hoping all of you have an awesome 2020.


General Discussion / Re: Merry Christmas
« on: December 26, 2019, 06:55:26 AM »
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

I have been sick in bed for two weeks with bronchitis. I lovingly gave the bug to the wife so she has been in bed sick.
She felt well enough to cook Christmas dinner but then we were both too sick afterwards to sit and eat so we both went back to bed.
This bug that is going around is horrible. Hopefully we will be back to normal in another week.

God Bless you all and I am hoping everyone has an amazing 2020.


General Discussion / Re: Why Are Some Sofas More Expensive Than Others?
« on: December 05, 2019, 04:51:39 PM »
We bought a sofa 22 years ago that cost $ 2,500 back then. It was done in heavy leather and the frame was solid hardwood.
That sofa is still in excellent shape. It pays to buy quality furniture.


General Discussion / Re: What air pressure for the air gun?
« on: December 05, 2019, 04:47:53 PM »
We use 90 lbs for everything except our rivet gun. We bump up to 110 #'s on that. When you are using 304 stainless rivets you need more pressure. The staple guns like 90 lbs.


General Discussion / Re: What Ya Been Up To
« on: December 05, 2019, 04:44:06 PM »
It has been a busy year. This last month has been horrific busy with our RV parts and service company and our awning company.
Just picked up another commercial awning job at Orlando International Airport. Trying to finish up 2020 marketing programs, rally schedule and a host of other things.

I am getting too old for all this happy horsecrap.


General Discussion / Re: New guy looking for new machine
« on: October 29, 2019, 07:43:17 AM »
Check all the linkage from the pedal up to the motor. I always adjust the pedal with the motor arm in the full stop position.
Also make sure the actuating rod coming off the pedal is straight and vertical and not at an angle.
If you are still having problems give Bobby a call.

I have 4 servo motors on 4 separate machines and all 4 seem to have to have the speed dials adjusted at different positions.
None of them operate in an identical fashion.

General Discussion / Re: French Seams
« on: October 24, 2019, 07:06:48 PM »
I did several large motorcycle seats using french seams. When you start doing curved contours using french seams it helps to take a valium
to keep from throwing the work through a window. I would also make sure no priests or nun's are in your shop. The language can get pretty colorful. I did one seat and by the time I was done I invented over a dozen brand new curse words.


General Discussion / Re: French Seams
« on: October 24, 2019, 08:10:52 AM »
Yup. Mucho dollars for a good setup. About $ 5,000. We are going to do an analysis on this including costs as well as the strength.
We just went to a 10 year warranty on our vinyl and we would end up bankrupt if the strength of those seams are not as good as
a stitched seam.

We have 2 fabric/textile consultants we work with who have been inside shops and plants all over the world. They have seen it all and know what works and what doesn't. We will call them in and go over the welded seam venture before we go any further. It has to be a sure thing otherwise I wont roll the dice and risk our company. My biggest concern is wind and rain loads. RV awning applications are completely different then standard commercial and residential awning installations simply because the RV awnings are all mechanized and go down the road at 65 mph.



General Discussion / Re: French Seams
« on: October 23, 2019, 06:50:07 AM »

I am not sure about using basting tape in other applications. I never used it before when doing other work but when I started doing awnings I started using it. I should clarify that we only use the tape on center seams. We do not use the tape on outside edge seams.

In regards to seams we use a fell seam on center seams for most awnings that require 2 panels. On some assemblies we use a simple overlap seam that is double stitched simply because the assemblies themselves wont tolerate a fell seam because of internal clearances inside the assembly. The assemblies seem to get less tolerant every year in regards to fabric replacements. The casement assemblies for example require a near perfect square in order for the lead rail to close tight. In other words the depth of the fabric has to be near perfect otherwise one end of the assembly will remain slightly ajar when the assembly is retracted. Not a good thing when that assembly is subject to 65 mph winds going down the road.

Depending on the assembly type we use either a perpendicular overlap seam or a parallel fell seam. 



General Discussion / Re: French Seams
« on: October 22, 2019, 08:11:59 AM »
We use it on all awnings to seal the stitch holes. It also is quicker then pins and needles or staples when sewing a 20 ft long piece of canvas.

We go through a boat load of basting tape.


General Discussion / Re: French Seams
« on: October 20, 2019, 08:16:38 AM »

I used to sew french seams on certain jobs ( motorcycle seats, marine seats, etc. ). The procedure I used for french seam is the same as this video. The only difference is that I did not use tape but instead cut strips of the same fabric I was using for the cover material and then used that as my backing tape. Using the backing tape method provides much more strength to the seam itself. Here is the method I used:


I have seen some get a french seam confused with a fell seam. This seam is sewing two ends together, opening it up and laying it flat and then sewing a top stitch on one side. We use this seam everyday in making awnings. We also call it a locked seam. This seam provides 90 % of the strength of the fabric itself.


The problem with seams is the terminology and subsequent confusion. One of the biggest headaches I had when I first started in this trade was learning the terminology. I still get a curve ball thrown at me on this forum by someone using a term to describe something I have never heard of before. :)


General Discussion / Re: Why Should You Always Buy Secondhand Furniture?
« on: October 19, 2019, 12:29:52 PM »
Just curious. For you furniture guys..... Have any of you ever been possessed after working on an antique piece of furniture ?
If so let me know. I can contact my local priest to see if he can do an exorcism of you. :)

There are some weird people out there with some very strange beliefs so this guy is not alone. I have heard of homes that had horrific murders committed inside that resulted in the home being torn down because no one would buy it due to the publicity of the murder.

I have also heard of chairs/sofas that had to be taken to a landfill because someone died on it from natural causes but was not found for a day or two. I have a buddy who thought he really scored big when he bought a pristine IROC Z 28 dirt cheap. The inside smelled horrible but he never gave it a thought when he bought it. Turns out after talking with a relative a guy committed suicide in it ( Carbon Monoxide ) and wasn't found for several days ( in the summer ). My buddy completely gutted the interior and took it down to the metal. He used every cleaning solution he could think of and was never able to get all of the smell out. It still had a slight odor to it.

In my early years of adulthood I served my apprenticeship as a Mortician. My former father in law owned a funeral home and I later worked part time for him for 14 years. I embalmed close to 350 bodies during that time and several of those were people who were not found for several days. The smell is horrific. A few we had to take outside and into the garage to embalm to keep the smell out of the chapels.

Anyone ever run across a piece of furniture that someone may have died on ?


The Lone Ranger and Tonto went camping in the desert. After they got their tent all set up, both men fell sound asleep.

Some hours later, Tonto wakes the Lone Ranger and says, 'Kemo Sabe, look towards sky, what you see?

'The Lone Ranger replies, 'I see millions of stars.'

What that tell you?' asked Tonto.

The Lone Ranger ponders for a minute then says, 'Astronomically speaking, it tells me there are millions of galaxies and potentially billions of planets. Astrologically, it tells me that Saturn is in Leo. Time wise, it appears to be approximately a quarter Past three in the morning. Theologically, the Lord is all-powerful and we are small and insignificant. Meteorologically, it seems we will have a beautiful day tomorrow. What's it tell you, Tonto?'

"You dumber than buffalo shit. It means someone stole the tent."

The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Serging boat covers - Machine?
« on: October 11, 2019, 12:27:18 PM »
You are very welcome.

My best advice is not to limit yourself by buying a serger that will only sew medium thickness fabric. Many are also limited on thread size.
A limit on thread size will limit you on fabric at the same time. Either one can add up to wasted money because you are very limited on the fabric you can sew. If you are planning on sewing canvas ( acrylic ) then you want a heavy duty serger that will accept heavy thread and fabric.

Pay close attention to the specs rather then the cost. I cannot remember what our serger cost but I believe it was around $ 2,000 complete. This is one of those purchases that you do not want to scrimp on. Also you need to look at the payback from future jobs. Sergers are not used that often but when needed are a blessing. They can open other jobs up for you and expand your offerings.


The Business Of Upholstery / Re: Serging boat covers - Machine?
« on: October 10, 2019, 04:11:43 PM »

We have a Juki 6716S series serger. Bob Kovar selected this for us based on us sewing heavy acrylic fabrics. It will serge multiple layers of heavy acrylic.

It is a solid performer and does a great job. It goes right through heavy acrylic fabric like butter. It was not fun setting up and threading but once you do it a couple times it becomes no big deal. They are not cheap but worth it in the long run to go with the heavy duty model. It makes little sense to go with a lighter duty model to save a few hundred bucks. We are not limited on what fabric we can sew. We also sew with V92 sunguard thread. It easily accepts 69 thread. 92 is about the thickest you can go. You have to be careful with some of the other sergers as they are limited on thread size and wont sew well with the thicker thread. If you are sewing boat covers you will want to sew with at least 69. 92 is preferred.

The Juki sergers are the most reliable. Here is a link to the one we have -



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