How to Make a Powerboat Sun Shade

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SKU: X-HT-300538



Add a temporary sun shade to your powerboat and enjoy hours on the water without suffering the heat and burn of the sun. With a temporary sun shade, you can install it when you're docked or at anchor and then take it down when you're off exploring the waters. In this video tutorial, you'll learn how to sew a freestanding sun shade for a powerboat, but you can apply these techniques to any shade structure you'd like to make for your boat, home or business. You can even erect a sun shade around the pool or at a campground. Let's get started on today's DIY project!

We're patterning our new sun shade from the old one. If you don't have an old sun shade to pattern from, not to worry! We'll show you how to measure for a sun shade using your shade poles as a guide. In order to take accurate measurements, you need to have shade poles already installed on your boat.

If you're in the market for high-quality shade poles, check out Carbiepoles™ Adjustable Carbon Fiber Shade Poles. Carbiepoles are a fantastic choice for erecting a temporary shade structure. They are simple to install and take down so you can quickly and easily add shade when you need it. These handcrafted, telescoping poles are incredibly lightweight and very strong. Each pole has an internal rigging system, making it easy to attach to your sun shade and tension it just right.

To create our sun shade we chose Coolrite™ Shade Cloth. Coolrite is a value shade cloth material only available at Sailrite. This economical fabric is a great choice for freestanding shade sails as well as sun shades for your boat, deck, pool, backyard and more. If you're looking for a higher end shade fabric, check out Polytex® or Parasol™. These two brands are considered top-quality shade cloth fabrics and come in a wide variety of colors.

Watch the video below to learn how to sew a sun shade. This is an easier project than you might think! Once you have your shade cloth patterned and cut out, next comes cutting the corner patches and sewing the hem and patches in place. Then all that remains is adding the shock cord cover clips and installing the sun shade on the shade poles. You'll be relaxing in the shade and enjoying the beautiful views from your boat's deck in no time!

  • Measuring Discussion - 0:54 min.
  • Patterning from Old Shade - 3:41 min.
  • Adding Hem Allowance - 10:15 min.
  • Cutting Corner Patches - 17:06 min.
  • Sewing Hem & Patches - 21:52 min.
  • Installing Shock Cord Cover Clips - 26:24 min.
  • Installing - 29:02 min.
  • Materials & Tools List - 29:39 min.
  • Shade Cloth Fabric from Sailrite (we used Coolrite™ 150" Gray #122630)
  • Seamstick 3/8" Basting Tape for Canvas (50 yds.) (#129)
  • Shelter-Rite® 61" Fabric from Sailrite (we used Beige #112014)
  • Thread Silver V-92 Polyester UV 4oz. (#106387)
  • Sailrite® Woven Sew in Tags (#121627)
  • Stayput™ Fastener Shock Cord Cover Clip (Standard) – Black (#100369) or White (#100368)
  • Triangle Tailor’s Chalk – Red (#121914)
  • Gingher® Scissors Right Hand Lightweight 8" (#101017)
  • Clear Acrylic Ruler 6" x 24" (#102400)
  • Sailrite® Canvas Patterning Ruler (#107040)
  • Scratch Awl Yellow (#2354)
  • Sailrite® Edge Cordless Hotknife 18V Package (#122177)
  • Tempered Cutting Glass for Hotknife (#121915)
  • Sailrite® Ultrafeed® LSZ‑1 BASIC Walking Foot Sewing Machine (110V) (#300601)
  • Sailrite® Ultrafeed® Industrial Sewing Table & Workhorse® Servo Motor (110V) (#120931)
  • Sailrite® Drill Hole Cutter Set (#121825)
  • Barry King Mallet Hammer Style 3# (#68563)
  • Tape Measure, 1/2" PVC Pipe, 2" Painters Tape, Drill
  • What did you think of this DIY project? Where would you put a sun shade? Let us know in the comments below!

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