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About Davm

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  1. I'm sort of computer challenged but I'll see if I can figure out how to post a photo. I was at an antique gun show many years ago and mentioned the rig to a rep from one of the big auction houses. He said those in the business called them "Bunkhouse Specials". A local saddle/harness maker would put up these rigs for the local cowboys and townspeople. The belt edges have a repetitive stamping, in this case a Triangle- along the top and bottom. The simple loops, the type where the bullets are spaced apart, of the loop leather is snaked in and out. The width of the belt about 2". The buckle nickel plated, it is a center bar with clipped corners.
  2. There are three ways to put bullet loops on a cartridge belt. I think the most common is sewing. I've done that on most of my belts. You can also cut slots in the belt and run the loop leather through the slots. You can do that two different ways. One is to "snake" the loop leather in and out each hole. This creates a situation where the bullets are somewhat apart from one another unless you stagger the spacing on the holes/slots. The second hole/slot method is to run the loop leather in and out the same hole. I tried this second method but the loops "wobbled" sideways and didn't look right. I went back to the "snake" method and had two different spacing, one for the loop holding the bullet and a shorter span on the inside of the belt up to the next loop for a bullet. It looks better but I'd like to learn the in and out the same slot method. Any help appreciated. Incidentally- I have my Great Grandfather's original rig from the 1880's. It had the "snake" method and the slots were evenly spaced however the loops went all around the belt, holding 30 bullets and the holster was over some of the loops unless you slide the buckle so it is under the holster. You see old photographs where the belt buckle was slid under the holster. The holster was a double loop. Western Nebraska/S. Dakota/Eastern Wyoming area. Fort Robinson.
  3. I wasn't sure whether the verdigris adversely effected the strength of brass cartridges. I polished my 45 Colt cases and used them- no problem but I then cut up wood dowels and keep them in the bullet loops. If you don't the loops tend to shrink and make it more difficult to put in cartridges. I have never found a way to stop verdigris so I sew more than rivet on my leather work.
  4. Yeah, to me a Buscadero has a downward extension on the belt with a slot through which the skirt on the holster runs. Some of us want "historically correct" gear and as best as I can tell the Buscadero is a Hollywood invention. Maybe first showing up around 1920. It helps on a fast draw type situation as the gun is lower but I'm not sure how well it works if you have to ride a horse. The holsters used in the old West were the Slim Jim/California and the Mexican Double loop.
  5. I'm always unhappy with my edges. Couple of questions. One dying the edge- I take my time but how do the rest of you get an even, straight line? My belts are coming along pretty good now but the holsters are still tough. On the wood wheels under power- it seems most go that route and I think I'll do that as well. I take it from others that they are looking for a machine to give them a perfect job but is edging a task accomplished by machine or is it a task that simply requires an artistic touch? On a wood wheel- how do you keep canvas in place? Thanks to all.
  6. I could figure it out but does anyone have a men's spurs strap template? Thanks.
  7. I am still learning. I started with the sides sewn together, then started using a welt. THEN added a liner on the holsters. That resulted in an edge about 3/4" thick so then I started skiving both sides and using a tapered welt. One problem I am still having with laminated or multiple pieces of leather sewn together is a nicely finished edge. Right now I sand and burnish then repeat until I get something pretty good but there are spots where the glue is visible. If I dye the edge that helps but then there still seems to be soft areas that are dinks or depressions and I have been using shoe wax that is the same color as the dyed edge to even out everything. Getting a nice edge is my number one area I need to improve, the rest of the project looks good. Any tips of the trade appreciated. Thanks.
  8. I need some help- I checked the archives but couldn't find an old post- I should have printed it. I know there is the "shoe polish" way of applying to leather and wiping off the surface to get a contrast but some time back someone said you could prep the leather, apply regular dye, and then quickly buff the surface to remove the dye so the only dark areas are in the depressions. Any help much appreciated.
  9. I think the first Western holsters were the Slim Jim styles used with cap & ball revolvers. Once cartridge guns came along the Double loop took over in popularity. I'm going to throw out some thoughts. 1. The double loop was a really good design. The skirt in back stiffened up the entire holster so that a single thick piece of leather could be used. Many of the earlier Slim Jim styles had a lining, often of a different color such as yellow or red. I use suede when I make that type but suede is actually wrong- the photos indicate a very thin but smooth type leather. The basket weave of the day for many of these Slim Jim's was a "fishscale" and the Tandy mule foot stamp is sort of similar. I think Wild Bill had patent leather holsters. These holsters were worn high on the belt. The belts on cartridge rigs had a lot of bullet loops- often the entire length and the buckle was often slid around and located under the holster so all the bullets were accessible. On the double loop- most had very little tooling- maybe a repetitive stamp along the edge. NOT all the handguns were peacemakers. The townsfolk and tradesmen often carried a smaller Smith & Wesson 32 rimfire and the bullet loops etc. were for that size. 2. On the percussion guns, Wild Bill wrote that he would load up at the beginning of the day with a flask and used round balls but once outside, most carried combustible cartridges as fast loading, back up ammo. As stated the conical balls weren't as accurate and could get knocked out of alignment when being seated. 3 The Buscadero Rig- as much as I can figure- is a Hollywood thing or at least started around 1900. Butch Cassidy might have still been robbing trains but most of the "wild West" was fast disappearing. 4. The crossdraw- I always figured that was used on long barrel guns to make it easier to draw out of the holster.
  10. My worry with contact is you have to line it just right. Wood glue -I've used and I've dampened the outside of the leather and it held but if I really soaked the leather it would fail. Barge- traditional favorite but I noticed the formula changes some time back. I'll probably use Gorilla Glue-original formula. I've thought about shoe goo- if if could be thinned down- might be good.
  11. I'm making a thick belt with two layers of leather. If I just sew the inner liner will buckle or form bubbles if curled inward- so I need to glue it. I've used barge cement before but it is getting difficult to find. What about some other glues? Shoe glue? Elmer's?
  12. I use barge simply because I can move the pieces a little if needed. With contact- you must be right on.
  13. Gee things keep getting more expensive, including the Tandy linen thread. I see there is hemp cord/thread used for crochet work and some other choices. I'm not sure how long these other threads would last- for outdoor belts, holsters, etc. Any comments welcomed.
  14. I'm making a western cartridge belt, about 8 oz with 3 oz liner. I sewed it up but when I bent it into a circle (like when being worn) there are a few wrinkles on the liner from being crunched. I'm wondering what to do. 1. Glue liner to main belt. 2. Wet belt and wrap around a barrel and let the liner dry and conform to shape. 3. Something else. 4. Nothing, with time the liner evens out? And...if I use glue, what glue? Tandy Leather weld? It is water based- not sure it is waterproof?
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