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About Mark842

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  1. The best way to learn is to jump in with both feet sometimes. You may get some stuff wrong but you will be able to see why its wrong and what you need to change. I highly recommend you watch some of Cechaflo's videos on youtube. It will help you quite a bit. He has tons of videos that are all shot very well.
  2. Not to mention if they are shipping a bunch of stuff there are plenty of other more reliable insurers that charge less and actually pay no questions asks when you have a claim. Shipsaver insures $100 for $1..add $1 for every hundred.. If your shipping in the under $100 range your saving $2.40 per package. That adds up to a lot of beer money!
  3. I agree with Fred. Get the warranty service first. Maybe they will address why it is happening also. If you were to try to repair with dye, even if you can get a successful color match, what will protect it from happening again? Looks like you either need some spacers or some padding between the tabletop and the leather.
  4. I've used everything from drill presses, dremels, bench grinder motors etc. They all get the job done to some degree. A few years back I pony'd up and bought the leather machine co's version. I love it. It's higher speed when needed and super quiet when running. I don't use the sanding drum on it as I have a seperate bench sander, instead I purchase old used canvas firehose and mount that on one side and soak it with saddlesoap. I run the wood burnisher supplied on the other side. It takes my edges to the next level.
  5. Pictures may help...
  6. No, not a typo...
  7. Busted the watchband on my Tag. They want $850 to replace the band. I can buy a nice gator belly for less than that and make several products from it but I know from past experience it will take a while to get my money back on it. Hoping someone has some belly from a smallish gator that can sell me a piece...willing to pay fair market price.
  8. This makes me want to refurbish my 29k but I never have more than a day or two where I don't need to for something....Mine looks like it was made in 1888...oh was!
  9. For what your doing I would go with either the Cowboy 4500 or the Cobra 4. They are basically the same machine and support for both is outstanding. What it would come down to is your location and which would cost less to ship to you. the leather Machine co (Cobra) is in California and I believe the Cowboy dealer is in Ohio...not positive as I went with the Cobra as California is closer. Super user friendly machines that are very capable.
  10. Awesome work! Love the colors...
  11. The speed controller will allow for slow speed by itself that is much more controllable than a clutch motor. What the speed reducer does is allow super slow high torque sewing. I've found that on machines that I'm sewing upholstery thickness leather up to about 6-7 ounce on an oil tanned or softer leather I don't need a speed reducer as the slowest setting on the speed controller is ample. I've also been sewing for years so your mileage may vary. Just keep in mind should you go with a speed reducer, it requires a little more room under your sewing table for installation. It usually requires moving your speed controller over a little so you can line up the pulleys. Unless your jumping right into a high volume situation where you have to produce a lot right away, or your planning on sewing 1/2" and up thickness veg tan I would install the speed controller and practice with it awhile. A good sign that your work requires a reducer is if while sewing your project on the slow setting the needle cannot make it through the material on its own or is straining the motor.
  12. I've used both methods depending on the size and amount of letters being used. Just doing a set of initials 1/4 to 3/8" high I will just put a piece of electrical tape around them and use a hammer. For larger words/letters I have an adjustable jig I've built that I arrange the letters in and use in a press.
  13. I've purchased most of my type off ebay although I have established relationships with some of the sellers that sell direct to me since they know what I like. As you can see on the link below there are thousands of options. Just make sure you understand the sizing on it as a lot of it is very small.
  14. I agree with Chief on the dye. I'm a big fan of not killing my tooling detail by using a black dye. You can use more coats of what you have already used or like Chief said, try an antique. It will highlight the depth in the tooling an lettering while still darkening the rest a little. As far as a critique...You have the basic concept and this is a more than fair start. It basically just comes down to practice of technique. Your beveling is a bit rough and I'm not sure what the original art of the Celtic shield looks like but the inner backgrounding looks inconsistent to me as the top 4 and bottom right inner sections have been back grounded differently. As for the lettering, i absolutely hate the standard leather industry letter sets out there. They have been manufacturing them for 60+ years and still can't make a set of letters that all match up square if you line them up in a jig. this makes a perfect lined up lettering job all but impossible using them. That leaves hand tooling the letters, daunting at first but not that bad, or when the budget allows, purchase old foundry letterpress type. I've been collecting sets for 20+ years and they work fantastic for lettering on leather with thousands of sizes and fonts available.
  15. In my opinion... If your quoting prices that you feel are making you fair profit for your time and expense and you are happy with the profit I see no problems here. If some of your customers think you work is worth more than quoted and pay you more, even better. I see even less of a problem. It can only lead to better things and it's far better than having customers think they were overcharged. That being said, I see a lot of beginners to a business, not even necessarily a leather business, only consider the cost of materials when making a product. They only realize 6-8 months down the road when they start getting some volume in orders that they didn't account for their time. Don't forget, you're employee number one of your leather business and as such should be paid an hourly wage that you deem is fair.