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About Ferg

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    Leatherworker.net Regular
  • Birthday 01/21/1934

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  • Location
    Southwestern Ohio
  • Interests
    Anything I can do with my hands and mind

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
    Everything that is unusual
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  1. I think "How It's Made" on TV has their videos available for playback. Some are on U-Tube. Anyway, I watched this one the other day of a company making watch bands. Ferg
  2. Ferg

    Wallet in progress.

    Ryan, Your embossing (I assume) is very nice. I am not enamored with your selection of background. First, I wouldn't mix completely different types of tooling. My preference would be more subtle backgrounding. Seems to take away from your image. Just my .02 Ferg
  3. Ferg

    Cheap Roo Skins

    I think my last count was about 17 roo skins in my inventory. Six to eight square feet on average. Probably paid between $125 and $175 per skin. I know I bought some specials one time for $75, threw half of them away. The leather is worth every penny. Ferg
  4. Ferg

    Bell Skiver Choices - Which way to go

    Similar to the roller I have on my COWBOY. I have modified it somewhat since it comes with both ends similar to your larger end. Ferg
  5. Ferg

    Bell Skiver Choices - Which way to go

    I have written so many times about my skiver experience...... I seldom answer anymore when someone asks about them. My skiver is a COWBOY top and bottom feed. Very close to being a Fortuna, just enough difference to notice. I have three different shape rollers for the top, the one mimicking the shape of the bell knife is one I use most of the time. These machines will skive any of the leathers easily except heavy Veg Tan. They tend to dull the knife quickly plus several passes are definitely necessary making it tiresome to reset for small runs. I have mentioned numerous times, these are not for the faint of heart. A very high learning curve and they will drive you "bonkers" some times just when you think you have it all figured out. I find that U-Tube and many other videos fall short in actually educating you to how to run these machines. Hours of playing with them and chewing up all that scrap leather you thought you would never have a need for. Bell knife must be kept sharp beyond anything you can or have ever imagined. BTW: I have never seen a bell skiver without all the shields in place. That said, keep your fingers away from the knife similar to keeping them out of a meat slicer. I use a serrated steel feed roller. They work better than the stone in my opinion and are a lot easier to keep clean. Vacuums may very well do the best job????? I made a sheet metal "chute" that fits under the machine and directs the skivings into a cardboard box. Doesn't make any noise either. IMHO: There are few dealers who know much about bell knife skivers. Mostly because they don't sell all that many of them. Unlike sewing machines that are used everywhere and anywhere. A dealer who offers service and the basic knowledge is your best bet. I do not care how much leather you take with you to try on a machine, there is nothing that will teach you how to use them any more than experience and trial and error. Different speed for feed roller and knife is easily changed/varied on this machine. You simply change settings of your belts into a different sized drive pully. I always thought I would like to have a Fortuna. After buying my COWBOY with top and bottom feed I prefer it to the stationary top presser foot on the Fortuna's I have observed. Ferg
  6. Ferg

    Chink Chaps for My Sisters

    You are a very talented young man with a fabulous family. Six boys with one girl in my family. Ferg
  7. Ferg


    Old folks do not have much to "Crow" about these days. Grandkids spice up our lives. Our oldest Grandson and his wife brought a beautiful little boy into our lives about a month ago. FINLEY is our first GREAT GRANDCHILD. NATHAN proposed to his "little" girl friend recently. They are special kids, both still in college. Nathan is one of seven most favorite GRAND KIDS, Now we have another!!! Ferg
  8. Ferg

    Bell skiver reviews

    Obviously, I don't have all the models out there. I have a Cowboy top and bottom feed that is a close clone to Fortuna, I believe all are. There may be some very subtle differences such as the feet for them. When I was researching the machines it was very clear they had copied most characteristics of the Fortuna Buy what you can afford, BEST SERVICE from dealer, and begin your term of learning to use it. Ferg
  9. Ferg

    Sharpening with a Tormek

    Having a Tormek I can tell you the best way to sharpen odd shaped knives is to do it manually on the finest stone the machine has to offer, no "Jigs". Make light pressure passes and check the angle you have on the blade constantly. Takes practice but it works. Ferg
  10. Ferg

    Steel rule bender manual

    I have a used die bender. They sell new for several thousand dollars, I gave $300 for mine. I cleaned some rust from it after I dismantled. Oiled and greased. It works like a charm. I made a couple connections at Ameriken making it possible to get one or two dies for a good price. I probably have $300 to $400 in dies which constitute about 8 or 10 pieces. The equipment requires much practice to do things correctly. Helps to remember each and everything you have done previous to making an actual die. The steel rule is extremely sharp edged and very strong. I wear heavy leather gloves on one hand when working with the rule. Fascinating work for sure. After making a number of dies along with some I threw away, I am more impressed with the work folks do manually. Watch a computer driven bender do the work, that is fascinating. I convinced my wife and myself that I also needed a wire welder to connect joints, that is interesting and testy also since the material is actually very thin. Again, much practice. Ferg
  11. Ferg

    Old Man

    As I get older many writings/ramblings have meaning to me. I think at least some of you will get a kick out of this. An Old Man & A Bucket Of Shrimp This is a wonderful story and it is true. You will be glad that you read it, and I hope you pass it on. It happened every Friday evening, almost without fail, when the sun resembled a giant orange and was starting to dip into the blue ocean. Old Ed came strolling along the beach to his favorite pier. Clutched in his bony hand was a bucket of shrimp. Ed walks out to the end of the pier, where it seems he almost has the world to himself. The glow of the sun is a golden bronze now. Everybody's gone, except for a few joggers on the beach. Standing out on the end of the pier, Ed is alone with his thoughts...and his bucket of shrimp. Before long, however, he is no longer alone. Up in the sky a thousand white dots come screeching and squawking, winging their way toward that lanky frame standing there on the end of the pier. Before long, dozens of seagulls have enveloped him, their wings fluttering and flapping wildly. Ed stands there tossing shrimp to the hungry birds. As he does, if you listen closely, you can hear him say with a smile, 'Thank you. Thank you.' In a few short minutes the bucket is empty. But Ed doesn't leave. He stands there lost in thought, as though transported to another time and place. When he finally turns around and begins to walk back toward the beach, a few of the birds hop along the pier with him until he gets to the stairs, and then they, too, fly away. And old Ed quietly makes his way down to the end of the beach and on home. If you were sitting there on the pier with your fishing line in the water, Ed might seem like 'a funny old duck,' as my dad used to say Or, to onlookers, he's just another old codger, lost in his own weird world, feeding the seagulls with a bucket full of shrimp. To the onlooker, rituals can look either very strange or very empty. They can seem altogether unimportant....maybe even a lot of nonsense. Old folks often do strange things, at least in the eyes of Boomers and Busters. Most of them would probably write Old Ed off, down there in Florida ... That's too bad. They'd do well to know him better. His full name: Eddie Rickenbacker. He was a famous hero in World War I, and then he was in WWII. On one of his flying missions across the Pacific, he and his seven-member crew went down. Miraculously, all of the men survived, crawled out of their plane, and climbed into a life raft. Captain Rickenbacker and his crew floated for days on the rough waters of the Pacific. They fought the sun. They fought sharks. Most of all, they fought hunger and thirst. By the eighth day their rations ran out. No food. No water. They were hundreds of miles from land and no one knew where they were or even if they were alive. Every day across America millions wondered and prayed that Eddie Rickenbacker might somehow be found alive. The men adrift needed a miracle. That afternoon they had a simple devotional service and prayed for a miracle. They tried to nap. Eddie leaned back and pulled his military cap over his nose. Time dragged on. All he could hear was the slap of the waves against the raft...suddenly Eddie felt something land on the top of his cap. It was a seagull! Old Ed would later describe how he sat perfectly still, planning his next move. With a flash of his hand and a squawk from the gull, he managed to grab it and wring its neck. He tore the feathers off, and he and his starving crew made a meal of it - a very slight meal for eight men. Then they used the intestines for bait. With it, they caught fish, which gave them food and more bait....and the cycle continued. With that simple survival technique, they were able to endure the rigors of the sea until they were found and rescued after 24 days at sea. Eddie Rickenbacker lived many years beyond that ordeal, but he never forgot the sacrifice of that first life-saving seagull.... And he never stopped saying, 'Thank you.' That's why almost every Friday night he would walk to the end of the pier with a bucket full of shrimp and a heart full of gratitude. Reference: (Max Lucado, "In The Eye of the Storm", Chapter 24, pp..221, 225-226) PS: Eddie Rickenbacker was the founder of Eastern Airlines. Before WWI he was race car driver. In WWI he was a pilot and became America 's first ace. In WWII he was an instructor and military adviser, and he flew missions with the combat pilots. Eddie Rickenbacker is a true American hero. And now you know another story about the trials and sacrifices that brave men endured for your freedom. As you can see, I chose to pass it on. It is a great story that many don't know....You've got to be careful with old guys; you just never know what they have done during their lifetime. Ferg
  12. I believe you should consider a leather with a "suede like" backside. I have several. I realize you probably couldn't wet form it. Suede lining may be your cheapest and best interior. Ferg
  13. Our items weigh from 8 or 9 oz. through maybe 10 pounds. It is really tricky to figure our costs since we drop ship our products direct to buyer. We really have no input on what the eventual retailer charges for mailing/shipping. Ferg
  14. I can appreciate your creativity. Unfortunately, I would not buy it since that is very rough and it would scratch my eye glasses. Ferg
  15. It seems I had a problem with the shipping cost from them . I questioned it and I believe they told me that is an estimate, won't be the final amount. That was disconcerting for me. I like to know what I am getting for what I need to pay. Since we ship thousands of items every year I know the shipping cost just keeps going up. Seems it needs to stop somewhere but never does. Ferg