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About zuludog

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  • Birthday 04/25/1950

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Northwest England
  • Interests
    Backpacking, Car mechanics, Model aeroplanes, Knifemaking, Leatherwork

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
    Knife sheath making
  • Interested in learning about
    general leatherwork
  • How did you find leatherworker.net?

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  1. LUMPENDOODLE2 & MY63. Thanks for your replies I have bought brass sheet, rod, & tube from MaccModels for my knife making, and have called at their shop, but had completely forgotten about them. Thanks for the reminder I hadn't heard of EKP Supplies but they could be useful You can see that I also make model planes, the plastic kits, but the days when every town had a model shop are long gone. There are still a few around, but mostly everything's on The Net now
  2. That's excellent work! Please can you provide the name and/or website of the model engineering firm? Thanks
  3. Search YouTube for 'Making a Leather Knife Sheath' by Ian Atkinson - it's an absolute masterclass! There are several other videos on sheaths, by Ian, and others
  4. Nigel Armitage has a review of that very tool on YouTube, it's well worth watching - 'Pricking Iron Review 10 Tandy 3.5 mm'
  5. I've been watching Nigel Armitage's review of Craftool Pro stitching chisels. He makes the comment that we shouldn't make stitching grooves so much as - They weaken the leather; and as the stitching is set in a channel that restricts the sideways expansion of the stitching so that it is less able to develop the typical zigzag pattern He just uses a line made with dividers, and then goes on to say that when the stitching is flattened and has time to settle as the item is used, there is not much of the stitching protruding above the surface of the leather anyway Interesting; any comments? I make mostly knife sheaths and I have always used a stitching groove, but I think that for the next couple I might just make a line with an edge creaser
  6. I think there has been a misunderstanding. I wasn't referring to a stitching chisel but to the 4-in-1 AWL, Tandy # 3209-00. Not many of the members on this forum think much of it either It's also quite expensive. For less money you can get the better quality Craftool Pro Stitching awl # 83020-00 plus the scratch awl #3217-00
  7. I've just had a thought about your problem with an awl. Are you using the 4-in-1 awl sold by Tandy and others? It's not very good (that's the polite version!) Get a simple fixed blade awl like Tandy Stitching awl with 1 1/4" blade, #31218-01, or, if you can afford it, Craftool Pro Stitching awl #83020-00. And remember to polish them on a strop
  8. I have a Craftool 2 - prong, 4mm stitching chisel, #88046 - 02, and I'm happy enough with it; but now I would like a 4 - prong to match, and also some chisels with narrower gaps, say 3mm This is where the fun starts as I'm getting confused. There are so many to choose from. I've just spoken to my local Tandy store, and they say they have three types of chisels, but the full range of sizes & prongs is not shown on their website Then there are the variety of Chinese & Japanese chisels on the Net, Amazon, and so on. Some of them are better known (Craft Sha, Seiwa) than others; presumably the quality will vary as well. Yer pays yer money and yer takes yer choice Searching YouTube for 'leather stitching chisels' will produce lots of videos; watch as many as you have the stamina for. In particular Nigel Armitage has done several reviews of different brands. In fact anything by Armitage Leather, Leodis Leather, and Leathertoolz is worth watching Be careful with the measurements and specifications as some refer to the gaps between the prongs, and some to the distance between the points. Also, the Chinese & Japanese chisels are probably made from the ground up in metric measurements, but I suspect that some of the Tandy chisels will be fractions of an inch that have simply been rounded to the nearest millimetre equivalent. I have decided to stay with Craftool chisels as I know they are OK for me, but I'll be visiting my local Tandy store soon and may just change my mind if I see anything better. Perhaps I'm a bit old fashioned but I'd rather pay a bit more to actually see & handle the goods before I buy them. On the other hand, some of the imports are so cheap it might be worth trying them, and no great loss if they're not very good. Decisions, decisions..... Whatever you get it's well worth fettling or polishing the prongs with a needle file and a home made 'wand' made by glueing some wet & dry paper to a sliver of wood like a lollipop stick; use 500 or 600 grit, then finer if you wish. There are a couple of videos about this Similarly with an awl. If you have difficulty using it, work on getting it as sharp and as smooth & polished as possible. If you haven't done it already, make your own strop from oddments of wood & leather, and use a proper stropping compound. This will be just about the easiest piece of leatherwork you'll ever do It helps with both awls & chisels if you rub/lubricate them with beeswax before you use them If you still have problems using an awl you could try adapting a drill press. In fact I think there have been a couple of threads about that on here; search away! As for thread, try starting with unwaxed, natural, 18/3 linen, and take it from there. Ask your supplier for needles to match
  9. Once you start looking and Surfing the Net you will see that new sharpening stones are expensive. There are a couple of markets near me with second hand tool stalls; see if there is one near you. Take your tools along and show the stallholder what you want to do; I have found that they are reasonable and helpful enough You probably won't find a ceramic or diamond stone as they are relatively recent developments, but you should be able to get an oilstone for £3 or £4. Then you just need some general purpose oil have a browse round the rest of the stall while you're at it, you never know your luck. One of my local stalls has a box for cobbler's & upholstery tools, I've had a couple of things from him
  10. Search YouTube for 'sharpening' and watch as many as you have the stamina for, you will start to see how things are done and get an idea of what you think will work for you Perhaps I'm old fashioned but I just can't get me 'ead round the idea of a sharpening stone that uses water! so I use a fine oilstone followed by a strop nevertheless I think this is one of the best videos on YouTube about sharpening. Although it's for chisels the same technique can be used for knives preparing and sharpening a woodworking chisel by Paul Sellers You can improve the stitching chisels by polishing the prongs. Use a needle file followed by a home made polishing wand; glue some wet & dry paper onto a sliver of wood or a lollipop stick If you don't have a needle file use 2 or 2 grades of wet & dry paper. work your way through grades 500 to 1,000 Lubricate the prongs with beeswax to make them easier to insert & remove
  11. The tool kit you've shown looks reasonable enough for the money, but you still need to add a few items, such as - A cutting mat; the usual green thing; get the biggest one you can manage, they're cheap enough Don't be tempted by the 4-in-1 awl sold by Tandy, and others. It's expensive and not very good. You will need a saddler's awl and a round awl. Looks like you already have a round awl in the kit. Tandy's tools do receive their share of criticism, but their Craftool range is reasonable enough. Traditionally an awl was sold as a separate blade and haft which you mounted and sharpened yourself, and this is a right pain. The Craftool awl 83020-00 is ready for use and not too expensive, especially if you can find it on offer or with their discount scheme You will need two knives - get a Stanley type knife for cutting leather. That will be good enough to start with. The blades are disposable, but they seem to work better if you resharpen them. The second knife can be anything you like; use it for cutting string, sharpening pencils, opening parcels, and so on. It's purpose is to make sure you use the first knife exclusively for cutting leather The key to good leatherwork is to have razor sharp tools. Get a fine oil-, ceramic-, or diamond- stone, whatever takes your fancy, and a strop. Search YouTube for sharpening techniques. Make your own strop from oddments of wood & leather; this will be just about the easiest piece of leatherwork you will do. Go to a good tool store or Online for some stropping compound. Same shop might also have a soft hammer and beeswax You will need to buy consumables like stains, dyes, edge coats, leather treatments like oils & greases, as well as a few odd tools now & again. So consider if it's worth joining one of Tandy's discount schemes. Get on their email list and you will hear of offers I see there is a Japanese style knife in your kit. It can be used for cutting and skiving. Search YouTube for 'Japanese leather knife' for how to use it
  12. See my reply to the previous thread - Hello from Warrington, England, by Scorched As for your Saxon dagger, search YouTube for 'making a leather knife sheath'. There are several videos
  13. Welcome to leatherwork! Have a browse through YouTube, and Search for 'leatherwork'. There are about 10 pages of leatherwork, each with about 15 to 20 videos, covering everything from beginners & how to start to particular projects. Watch as many as you have the stamina for! Similarly, read through sections in this forum like Getting Started & Leather Tools Ian Atkinson and Nigel Armitage have good, clear videos; Search YouTube for 'Leodis Leather' and 'Armitage Leather' Nigel Armitage has a video called How to make a simple handmade wallet, which is also a good general introduction to leatherwork
  14. Alright, that's enough for fun, if you like that sort of thing More seriously, search YouTube for 'log end table' ; 'tree stump table'; and any similar variations you can think of. As is usual with YouTube there are lots of videos, some probably more relevant & useful than others I have only watched 2 or 3 as I didn't need to watch any more, but I think you would find it useful to do so, as many as you have the stamina for One of them recommends painting the cut ends with 40% sucrose solution to prevent cracking. I don't know anything about this, perhaps others can comment? Sucrose is just the chemical name for ordinary table sugar Have you ever used percentages? They can be confusing if you're not familiar with them, but I have used them all my working life. Beware, 40% is not 40 + 100 it is 40 sucrose + 60 water; my apologies if I'm talking down to you.
  15. 'fraid I haven't used anything like that, so I'm stumped for an answer.