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About Toddo

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  • Birthday 09/14/1963

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    Richmond, VA

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  1. I have tried a couple 2 or 3 different printable substrates. Originally, I simply traced from plain paper printed in an inkjet printer using a pencil as a stylus which worked pretty well. I got pretty accurate and decent defined lines onto the leather. Then by suggestion I tried the Overhead Projector Transparencies For Inkjet Printers. Those things are a big no-go. The projector transparencies are so hard/dense that even a sharp stylus cannot make a well defined line in the leather. Last I got some "Tracing Film" from Tandy but ran into the problem of how to make inkjet printer ink stick to the plastic film. I came upon this product that you paint onto the tracing film that makes inkjet ink stick to the plastic called Golden Digital Ground For Non-Porous Surfaces. It's an ink aid that makes ink stick to slick surfaces. That was a big pain in the neck but it did make the ink stick to the plastic without smearing the ink. Then only to find that the image and digital ground compound will actually peel up in sheets from the tracing film when pushing a stylus onto it. Today I think I finally found the optimum setup for tracing onto leather. Tandy Tracing Film combined with a LaserJet Printer. The Tandy Tracing Film and a sharp stylus will actually make the most well defined impressions when compared to plain 20lb printer paper or the overhead transparencies. Here's a comparison photo: Here's an image printed onto the Tandy Tracing Film using a cheap HP LaserJet Pro 15w printer that I got today for $80: I was worried that the LaserJet Printer might melt the tracing film but it did not. It turns out great and it's dry to the touch as soon as it exits the printer! No smearing. Just what I was looking for. When you push the stylus onto the film with the toner ink on it (which is not really ink at all but melted poloypropylene) it actually etches the ink up when you run your stylus over it which lets you know that you've traced that line: Here's the stylus I use which is pretty sharp:
  2. They all look great. I'm partial to the barbed wire one myself.
  3. That's very creative. Creativity don't come easy for a lot of people. Very nice.
  4. Beautiful pouches. Etsy would make a good home for those. (is Etsy in the UK?). You could use those for lots of things like trail kits. Fire starter kits. Small first aid kits etc.
  5. Here's my final sheath sewed onto the outside of the right side panel for the trail bag project. Front and back of sheath sponge wiped with no antique. And I remember now why I antiqued the side side panels to begin with even though there is no tooling on them. It's because I'll have a tooled design on the front of the bag so the entire front panel will be antiqued and so I had to antique the side panels also so the color would match over the entire bag. The sheath is just a touch darker. Not bad though. Here's the right and left side panels together. I got a LOT more to do finish the bag. I hope the dye job on the front panel comes out even. The front panel is huge. It's like 9 inches wide by around 3 feet long. It's gonna wrap around the side panel sewing tabs, come back around the top and hang down more than half way down the front of the bag. I hope the overlapping wipes with the sponge don't show dark sections on the overlaps. The Fiebings pro dye is oil dye so I "shouldn't" have a problem as long as the wipes are even and I don't let dye pool on top anywhere.
  6. Lots of good info to think about. Thanks for the input.
  7. Yeah the darkness probably has more to do with the saturation of the leather. As far as the antiquing, basically I was just mimicking the Weaver Leathercraft guy at this YouTube video: However, I do realize he has tooling in his piece that he wanted to highlight. I gotta say though I thought the antiquing on my bag side panels made it look better even though there was no tooling. This is my newly molded sheath front-piece that has not been antiqued on top of the bag side panel. This new piece was sponge wiped. It is also the replacement piece I got off Ebay that was very white looking before I dyed it. Without the antique on it, the color is really not that far off from the side panel color. It's totally acceptable: Here's the sheath back-piece along side the front piece. The back piece was sponge wiped and has been antiqued. It is darker than the front-piece. I have enough left from the Ebay piece to make one more back-piece so what I'm gonna do is, make a new back piece, sponge wipe it, and not antique it so it matches the front-piece and I think that will be fine: Thanks for the tip on the resist. I will be tooling a huge design on the front panel of the bag. I planned on dyeing over top of the tooling then antiquing over top of that with no resist like the Weaver guy in the YouTube video. I think I will use resist on my next bag. What resist do you suggest that doesn't streak or do anything weird?
  8. Just for an update. So I got the piece of leather from Ebay to make the new sheath and the Ebay piece looked white compared to my original single shoulder leather. I went ahead and made the sheath outta the new white looking leather thinking that now this one is gonna turn out lighter than the side panel pieces because of how white the leather looked. So I surfaced sponged the dye on front and back (because the back side of the flap will be seen when opened) with the fiebings pro dye. And guess what. It came out not lighter than the other sheath I totally submersed in dye, but just as dark some how. Go figure. I only dyed the front side of the side panel pieces and left the backs undyed. I guess dyeing the back side of leather makes the front side look darker somehow? I don't really get it. After applying antique on the new piece it even actually looks a bit darker than the first sheath that I was so worried about being to dark. I coulda just gone ahead with the first sheath. Phsst. Lessons learned.
  9. I may try that one some time when I get more completed projects under my belt and want to try for something more refined looking.
  10. That did cross my mind. The knife sheath is a small piece of the bag as a whole and will be sewn into the interior of the bag so a slight color variation on that piece will not be to critical in this instance.
  11. Nice looking sheath. I like the dye effect around the edges! I went ahead and ordered a new piece of leather to make a new sheath so I experimented with the old sheath. I soaked it in 50/50 bleach and water for around 5 minutes or so. It definitely pulled dye out of the leather as the solution was full of dye after 5 minutes. It turned out a splotchy mess like yours did with denatured alcohol. It looks like it was regurgitated by a fish then washed up on the beach It's extremely dry now and practically brittle. It feels like if you tried to bend it, it would like actually break. The bleach totally dried the leather out to the max. It needs to be reconditioned. I think I'll go ahead and make a sheath out of it for one of my old lock blade knives.
  12. Ahh thanks for the advice yall. I was just looking at 8.5"x11" single cut pieces of veg tan leather on Ebay for like $10 w/free shipping. I could remake the two pieces without much expense and re-do them if I decide I don't wanna use the pieces. As a matter of coincidence, I too prepunched holes in the first 4 other pieces I mentioned before I dyed them and noticed darker areas on the edges where the dye soaked deeper into the leather through the holes like you said. But it actually looks pretty cool and could easily be an "on purpose" effect ha. And the pieces were not even dip dyed. Just sponge dyed and dye still soaked in through the punch holes quite a bit. Here's the piece with the dark edges. This is gonna be a side panel of a black powder trail bag. The dark edges make it look rustic and cool even though it was done by accident. I won't be doing that again. All dying done before holes are punched. (This is actually a 3 piece construction. Front and back leather with a 1/16" acrylic board sewn in between to keep the sides of the bag rigid. The interior/back side is lined with black felt. A lot of firsts on this project. Never saddled stiched or done any of this before)
  13. I got a project going and I decided to use Fiebings Pro Dye/oil dye according to the Weaver Leathercraft dude on YouTube. When I saw that you could make multiple passes with the oil dye without the leather darkening with each pass I says to myself that's the stuff for me. So I used 50/50 light brown and mahogany on the first four pieces of my project and then antiqued with Fiebings antique gel and the pieces turned out beautiful. Another part of my project includes a wet molded knife sheath that is two parts sewn together. The parts are small so I decided to dip-die them. The Weaver Leathercraft dude said oil dye stays a consistent color no matter what right? So there should be no problem with the dip dye even though I used a sponge just on the top surface of the other four pieces. Mistake. The two knife sheath pieces are significantly darker than the pieces that I sponge wiped with the dye. Is there any way to lighten dye after it's been applied? The only thing I've tried so far is that I soaked the front piece with hot water hoping it would wash some of the dye out. It is now drying out. I'll see in a day or two if that helped. What about soaking the pieces in a 50/50 solution of bleach and water? I bought a single shoulder for the project and it's coming down to the wire on having just enough leather to complete the project. I really don't have enough leather to remake the knife sheath parts. I really hope there is way to salvage the parts. My wet molded front piece came out so awesome it looks like it was molded in a factory. I hate to loose that piece!
  14. Awesome looking key fob. The Chief Head button is a great touch.
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