Ken Nelson

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About Ken Nelson

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
    saddles,tack and chaps

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  1. Bar risers or not - pros and cons?

    I agree with toot also, and would say this as well, you need so much room for your stirrup leathers to pass through your seat (tunnels) whichever way you build your ground seat. I really feel a qualified saddle maker can get the seat a customer wants either way a ground seat is built rather it be solid ground seat or risers. Scoring rawhide can definately cause broken trees. I have retreed some pretty expensive handmade saddles caused from scored rawhide. Just my 2 cents worth.
  2. N.Porter Saddle

    I rode a Hizer saddle when I was a youngster, built back in the mid 1930's that had the strings on the left side of the fork. I have seen some built back in the 40's and 50's that had them factory. I never was sure what they were for but I used to tie a bull whip on the left and a rope on the right. I have seen them extra strings on Hizers, Hamley's several custom saddles and now a Porter.
  3. what class Pfaff 145-H-3 BSN?

    Thank you for the information WIZ, You never cease to amaze me!!
  4. What's happened to Hermann Oak?

    I have been using HO for 12 or 13 years. I have not noticed a decline in quality. I get all mine from Panhandle Leather in Amarillo, TX. Their prices are the best I have found and they are the most reasonable on shipping. And they usually get the orders out the same day if I call in the morning.
  5. Ferdinand Chap machine

    I took a bit of time this AM and tried this machine out to see what it could do as far as maximum capabilities. I was mistaken on the foot lift. You can get a scant 1/2 inch of leather under the foot. It will sew an honest .46" of leather consisting of 3 layers of split HO skirting and 1 layer of 5 oz chap leather and did it well with 277/207 with a 200 needle. It uses the 328 needle system. This machine has a clutch motor on it currently and set up quite slow. It is smooth and sewed smoothly with the above experiment. I used some 207/138 with a 160 needle that did a NICE job at 7 stitches to the inch. It has capabilities I do not need with a saddle stitcher but it is neat and I like it.
  6. Ferdinand Chap machine

    I could be mistaken, It may well have started life as a singer. Ferdinand sure enough changed up some things though.
  7. Ferdinand Chap machine

    I need to use it a little bit to figure out if I am going to sell it or the Pfaff 545 H4 I have. I kinda like this machine. PM me and we can discuss it though.
  8. Ferdinand Chap machine

    This is the chap machine I got out of the saddle shop last week. It has Approx. 5/8 " of lift and I have not got to try to see what the maximum it will sew. It is set up to use a 328 needle presently and I am not sure if a more standard needle will work in it or not. By looking at pictures, I think it was built up from a Consew 206 RB1, but don't know for sure. It does use a M bobbin. I was surprised by the size of the fly wheel. Let me know what you fellas think. Old gentleman I bought it off of says he used 207 thread in it regularly. If I end up keeping it, I will put a servo on it and keep the speed reducer but it is set up pretty slow. I bought this machine for a fella and he backed out before I got home.
  9. Acquired machines this week

    No, it is a compound feed machine but it has the slotted throat plate with a needle guide under the throat plate. You could replace the needle guide with a standard leather throat plate and a standard leather feed dog, and have the same feed as a Cobra or Cowboy. This set up is supposed to be the real deal on strap goods with the slotted throat plate. The needle guide is available from Nicko-Sew on Ebay or they show it anyway on their listing for a TSC Juki 441. I will know more after I use it some but it does pull a nice stitch on some scraps I run through it. BUT my Cobra pulls a nice stitch too and for a lot less money than a New Juki 441 set up to sew leather. Friend of mine has a Cowboy 4500 he is quite fond of. THIS is not a put down of any sewing machine brand, it just has a little different twist on the feed. I am curious as to how it feeds skirts with dense sheepskin. I do know several really good saddle makers that use the Juki Pro 2000 and love them.
  10. Acquired machines this week

    I have a Cobra Class 4 mounted on a newer Ferdco stand that is a bit heavier, and nicer, than this stand under this machine. It is VERY solid but not a roll around, I guess I could put casters on it but I haven't needed to move it in 4 years. LOL. Ferdco actually, or took credit for anyway, developed a little different twist on the feed system on this machine than the Cobra's and Cowboys I have been around. So far it looks awesome but I will know after I sew a pair of skirts on it. I am rather excited about it but I have too many machines right now.
  11. Cylinder arm length

    I have built a lot of saddles on a 9" 441 clone in the past Given my preferences, I would rather have a 16" arm. But there is nothing machine sewn on a western saddle that cannot be satisfactorily sewn with a 9" arm. I built over 50 of them on 9" arms. HTH. Ken
  12. Acquired machines this week

    Here is the Juki Pro 2000 It has a little different feed than my Class 4. It is in really nice shape, I think. I will get a picture of the Ferdinand Chap machine up as soon as I figure it out. Thanks, Ken
  13. I picked up two sewing machines from a saddle shop going out of business this week. They were bought new by an older gentleman and have been lightly used and well taken care of. I don't know rather to keep them and sell my Cobra Class 4 and Pfaff 545 H4 or sell these two machines. One is a Juki Pro 2000 by Ferdco, looks and sews like new the other is a Ferdinand walking foot chap machine, both have clutch motors and speed reducers. Slow and easy to sew on I could not get the pictures to attach here. They are pretty cool.
  14. Ferdco Pro-2000 ... Which Machine Base?

    I knew that, they actually used good machines for their conversions but some of the parts are hard to find ie the last 900B I had.
  15. Ferdco Pro-2000 ... Which Machine Base?

    Ferdinand Bull was built on a Seiko that was badged Consew but wore the Ferdinand brand. Jump foot, needle feed and a good machine. Also known as a 900B. I have owned 2 of them.