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Topic: where to buy cardboard tubes to roll fabric on?  (Read 18470 times)
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« on: March 09, 2010 06:10:10 AM »

I've been searching high and low online for places that sell those cardboard tubes that rolls of fabric come on. Anyone know where to buy them, or even what they're called?? I"ve tried searching for "cardboard tube" and other variations of that on google and don't come up with what I need. Any ideas? Thanks!
« Reply #1 on: March 09, 2010 06:48:33 AM »

Why don't you just pop into some fabric store and ask if they have empty tubes to get rid of?  You might end up with a bunch of them for free.

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« Reply #2 on: March 09, 2010 07:07:59 AM »

Yep I've tried that, I get one or two maybe. I need a bunch, around 20 or so, that's why I'm looking to buy them but it's been quite hard!
« Reply #3 on: March 09, 2010 07:21:49 AM »

Have you tried hardware stores?  They sell things rolled in similar tubes.

50 projects for 2011:  15/50
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2010 08:00:42 PM »

You could try looking for mailing/shipping tubes too, though I'm not sure if they come as long as you need them.
« Reply #5 on: March 09, 2010 08:53:23 PM »

where in the world are you? a local op shop near me i saw had a container full of them and another stack with fabric on them. dont know how much they were selling them for. chances are you are as far away from me as possible though.

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« Reply #6 on: March 10, 2010 07:20:13 AM »

I've tried the hardware store as well, no luck there, and mailing tubes are too short and too expensive as well Sad
I'm in boston orion! where is your local op shop? I'm with you, though I bet we're on opposite sides of the world as well Wink
« Reply #7 on: March 10, 2010 02:57:41 PM »

hahaha yeah other side of the world.

the only other thing i can suggest which has already been said is ask the fabric shops. you may only get one or 2 but over time they will add up.

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« Reply #8 on: March 12, 2010 09:38:29 PM »

I second (third?) the talk to the fabric shop idea.  Mine even told me when they usually get a shipment of new fabric, they'll take the smaller bits to add to the new bolt thereby creating a whole lot of empty rolls at once.  I'm pretty sure they just toss/recycle them.

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« Reply #9 on: March 15, 2010 06:56:47 PM »

I think what you want are the cardboard bolts.  However, if you're cool with an actual round tube, you could try print shops, especially ones that cater to architects.  I actually work for an architect, and we have the tubes the big rolls of paper come on stacked up until someone gets around to taking them to the dumpster.  If you found a nice person at a local print shop, though, they'd probably set them aside for you.

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« Reply #10 on: March 18, 2010 08:09:50 AM »

When I worked at Joanns, we sold the long tubes for home dec fabric if people asked, but gave away the rectangular bolts for free.  Reason being we needed to use the long tubes to roll customers home dec fabric back onto, but the square ones were garbage.

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« Reply #11 on: March 20, 2010 02:01:47 PM »

Here's another possible source, where I just got about two dozen for free: a local upholstery shop. We needed bunches of long tubes for a science fair project and a local auto upholstery shop had so many stuffed in a big barrel we could barely get them out! He was happy to get rid of them. Try auto upholstery, but also a regular furniture upholstery shop should have them, too, especially if they do a booming business. I keep all my vinyl on tubes so it doesn't fold, and I've never had a problem finding tubes at these places. Good luck. Check the phone book.

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« Reply #12 on: March 24, 2010 12:14:07 PM »

have you thought about going to a Home Depot or Lowes and getting PVC piping cut to your preferred lengths?  would be more expensive (but probably reasonable) and would last longer than the cardboard tubes.

Since my girls actually nap (knock on wood), I am going to start trying to work off my negative feedback.  Life got hectic with their early arrival.  I apologize for the inconveniences my flaking caused.
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« Reply #13 on: March 24, 2010 12:16:17 PM »

I have tubes that I got for free from a local drapery shop...they had hundreds laying in their cutting room but youhave to ask them to set them aside else they will pitch them and smash them into the dumpsters!

« Reply #14 on: May 26, 2010 08:37:18 PM »

Sometimes I get them from Winmill fabric in Chinatown Boston.  I've never asked for twenty, but they have on occasion given me the tubes,  which we call bolts, because a bolt of fabric comes on them.  It's worth a shot to ask. The people that work there are quite nice.
« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2010 07:49:57 PM »

Since it is primarily home dec fabrics that come on rolls, concentrate your search on home decorating fabric stores.  They are likely to have what you need.  Another possible source could be an upholestery shop.

If all else fails, you could get PVC piping from the plumbing section (they usually come in 10' lengths).  You can often get the hardware store to cut them down for you (highly recommended) or you can hack through them with a miter saw and box.

I have a couple taking up room in my sewing room...if you were closer you could have them.
« Reply #16 on: June 29, 2010 05:25:51 PM »

I work at a Hancocks fabrics and I can tell you we throw away tons of cardboard bolts all the time.

It's true that we tend to have fewer of the round deco bolts available usually, but if you check back regularly you should be able to get a decent supply.  In most cases you probably want to check back later in the evening after we've done a good deal of business throughout the day.  I know at my store we throw them out every night, so if you come in the morning we won't have anything for you.
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« Reply #17 on: July 18, 2010 10:42:34 PM »

^yes! They're called bolts.

I used to work in a JoAnn store, and they are also very happy to give them to you for free. We usually just threw them in the compactor anyway. I took about 30 once after a big garment-district fabric binge.

and agreed with ^^^ about the rolls. Smiley

good luck!


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« Reply #18 on: March 02, 2011 01:59:27 PM »

Ksew   Hi I am totally new to this site...just became a member so I could reply to your question...I am a canvas fabricator down in NJ...I have tubes left & right they are all 60" long...you are more than welcome to them but we would have to ship them up Fed-Ex ground and I don't know how much that would cost...it is the cheapest way...I wish you were close by ha ha
« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2011 02:17:00 PM »

Phoenix of Anderson recycles them and would probably sell and ship them to you at a great price.
« Reply #20 on: March 30, 2011 10:36:47 PM »

I work at Hancock Fabrics in Sioux Falls SD... and we always have tons of tubes that decorator fabiric comes on... deco fabric is 54-56 inches wide so the tubes are at least that long... Also.. we throw at least 20-100 card board bolts that cotton fabric comes on that are about 25 inches and there are also cardboard bolts that fasion fabrics come on that are about 32 inches.... We throw them away daily...
« Reply #21 on: May 21, 2013 03:17:00 PM »

They are sometimes called Convolute Cores or Spiral Tubes......go to http://www.dwpapertube.com/products.html.  I was looking one time because I was making my own centerpiece risers for wedding. Wink
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« Reply #22 on: May 26, 2013 06:14:34 AM »

I have taken such tubes out of the dumpster next to a carpeting store. I do not know what comes on them... vinyl flooring, carpeting, whatever, but they have tons in the dumpster. Try such an establishment.... Nice thing they are free and they might be happy for you to take them instead of having to pay to have them hauled to the landfill

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