late sixties, mexico city: riding the city bus surrounded by a bunch of guys with lunches reading tabloids during morning commute.
as if on some unseen cue the pages got passed about and earnest hat folding commenced.
when the bus pulled up in front of a big construction site, the crewmen disgorged onto the sidewalk "ready" to get after it with fresh faces and new paper hats!
a coworker drove german iron with a sunroof that was jammed someplace short of sealed up shut. deep inside a complex assembly dwelt the culprit: a stripped gear. the dealer wanted bigtime ransom money for the whole motorized shiteree. his brother, a dentist/technician with a lab full of stuff for casting, mixing, pouring, baking and grinding really hard and durable items had no trouble reproducing a perfectly suitable replacement part, pretty darned pronto
That sailrite is nice but you can find a good used industrial sewing machine for much cheaper. One good cheap option is the old singer model 201 that can be picked up for around $150. Not industrial but stout enough to sew two layers of 1" webbing and a strip of supertape (making your own aiders), often used for light duty sail construction as well.
Lots of sailing and mountaineering gear made on this Sailrite. Basic design still cranking after many years.
Sailrite LSZ always at the ready.
If you are going to seriously get into homemade gear shoot me a pm and I can give you a list of the vendors we have found that give good prices on small quantities of silnylon, rip stop, Goretex, canvas, fasteners etc.