Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Caveat Zipper

Zip and unZip your zipper before knitting it into the bag, 
even if it's a new zipper! Perhaps you want to open the package in the store and check it before you bring it home...

The zipper in my larger little felted purse is a big disappointment and a chore to operate. While the zipper in the smaller bag glides back and forth easily with a high pitched zzeeeeppppp!, the zipper in the larger bag is sluggish and loud and difficult. I don't understand why. It's a brand new zipper that I bought at the in a group of maybe 7 new zippers, to match some non-felting yarn I had on hand in anticipation of making several zippered bags. New Coats and Clark nylon coil zippers. It has no business sounding like a belligerent, big metal-toothed zipper, sticking and rusted on a neglected sleeping bag or large utility object.

I didn't notice the difficulty with the dark green zipper until I had knit it in and was nearly half finished with the bag. At that point I thought I'd just have to pick up some wax or other such zipper fixing aid and deal with it later. When I checked at JoAnn's the only thing they could offer was beeswax in a plastic case with slits on both ends. I pointed out that it was labeled with instructions for waxing thread. But the sales associate insisted the slits were also fine for sliding zipper teeth through.

I tried applying the wax to the teeth of the zipper multiple times and working the zipper back and forth. It's never stuck, it just takes an astonishing amount of effort and makes a larger than expected amount of noise. I've come to the conclusion that perhaps the slider is the culprit rather than the teeth. Haven't had the time to really mess with it much since.

You can see the beeswax is kind of caked in there now. Not an attractive solution!
It made the zipper zip slightly less loudly and slightly more smoothly, but when I tried it again a day later it had returned to the original state. *sigh*

ETA: I've just checked the remainder of the zippers and found two or so that are going back for ones that are less loud and more smooth!

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