Synthesizer Dust Cover

While the days remaining for this year might be drawing towards the end, what there’s left around the christmas holiday season come packed with heaps of spare time. As in, a welcome bonus hours to tinker this and that around the house :)

One DIY skill that’s been on my “to try” list for quite some time is sewing. And if there’s one add-on I’d really like to have for my synthesizers, that would be tailor made dust covers. Add up these two, and it sounds just like a fun project for the holidays. Perhaps recycle some worn-out clothes while at it.

Long story to follow, here’s what I ended up with:

custom x0xb0x dust cover

Yay it’s a custom dust cover for my x0xb0x.

Before we dive in a word of warning: What follows does not contain any proper sewing advice, it’s just me trying to learn this stuff from scratch. If you landed on this post looking for sewing advice then it’s perhaps best to stop at the Youtube how-to link in the following chapter.

Or perhaps if you want to read posts about the x0xb0x, go here.

Back To School

Now I gotta admit I’m not exactly n00b to machine sewing. I did have this one school course on 7th grade, but that was like +25 years ago.. And what I made then turned out nothing I’d actually use (a awful-looking t-shirt)! What experience I might’ve gathered then sure is nothing to count on at this point.

So to boot with I spent some time getting to know sewing jargon, watched a bunch of how-to videos off Youtube and read through the manual of the sewing machine we have at the house. After that I went at it thinking, whatever I’ll end up will look pretty much a practice piece but should still serve its purpose. Was pretty much spot on there :)

Pin It Down

Fabric-wise I chose to go with recycling some old jeans, much like the (now scrapped) mouse mat kludge I did a few years back.

With one leg part cut out of the jeans and its other seam opened, I sketched x0xb0x outlines on the fabric, cut that to shape and pinned the resulting piece to resemble something it should look like.

Shape roughly sketched on a piece of jeans.

Rough sketch of the x0xb0x on a piece of jeans…

..and cut that to size.

..and cut that to size.

A dash of functional design: Connectors shouldn't get covered so that there's no need to disconnect cables.

A dash of functional design: Connectors shouldn’t get blocked so that there’s no need to disconnect cables when the x0xb0x gets covered.

The pinned fabric next to x0x.

The pin-shaped fabric next to x0x.

For the sewing stage I ended up removing and rotating the pins on all horizontal edges. It was just that much easier removing them during sewing, when they weren’t placed lateral to the seam (ref. connector pic above). Lesson learned right there.

Bobbin Not Weaving

I likely spent more time setting up stuff & making a mess of this and that on the sewing machine, than what sewing the final seams took. Among other things, I totally missed the bobbin running out of thread mid-seam. There I was test-fitting and admiring the presumably “ready” dust cover, only to notice that the stitches started to falling apart. Uh oh :)

I had no clue whatsoever which stitch type might be the proper one for sewing jeans, so I just went with a plain (single fold) hem and straight running lockstitch. The fabric was sort of stretchy, but it’s not going to get stretched at all when used for a dust cover, so I just assumed the stitch type isn’t of much (if any) importance.

Corners sewn, length not looking that good on the side..

Corners sewn, fabric length not looking that good on the side.

With the corner seams done it turned out that my rough sketching was way rougher than expected (call it ‘generous‘?), and both the sides thus had some slack to them. The proper way to fix would’ve probably been to rip open the vertical seams, tighten the fabric and re-stitch the seam. Instead I just went the lazy route by folding the excess fabric and stitching the seam over that.

Fabric measurement fix, left side

How To Not Fix A Loosely Sketched Pattern, part 1

Fabric measurement fix, right side

How To Not Fix A Loosely Sketched Pattern, part 2

Occasionally on some spots, when finishing a straight stitch (by reversing slightly) the threads got somehow messed up. When this happened, there would be three or four threads to cut instead of just the two (upper & lower) when removing the fabric from under the presser foot. No idea what caused this, but if you do please leave a comment.

As you can see from pictures above, I sewed from edge to edge so that the horizontal & vertical stitches crossed one another. I suppose the visually appealing approach here would’ve been to run the seams continuously following the edges. Like by stopping on a corner, lifting the presser foot, rotating the fabric, lowering the foot and continuing along the next edge.

x0xb0x dust cover round the back

The back edge looks pretty ok at least. Minus the mess left by bobbin thread running out.

Fun Enough?

Yes indeed I will be definitely making more! Definitely not blogging about them, but maybe there’ll be a project page at some point :)

custom x0xb0x dust cover

Saved from dust!

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3 responses to “Synthesizer Dust Cover”

  1. atkokosplace says :

    So smart! Love this and awesome you made it!

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