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About dkbutcher

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  • Gender
  • Location
    Central FL
  • Interests
    The great outdoors, DIY, hiking, photography, hammocks

LW Info

  • Leatherwork Specialty
    The drunkenbelt (looks like a drunk did it) :)
  • Interested in learning about
    Finishes and treatments

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  1. I'll try to answer to the best of my (very limited) knowledge... Dye is not paint, it is soaked into the leather and I would guess that is why most colors get dark when you put them on the leather. You can't do any sort of primer with dye because it is a dye and not paint... so why not use paint instead of dye? There are acrylic (I think) leather paints that you could use instead of dye or you can use paint in spots that you need it. Look at the firefighter helmet shields for examples. Someone might know of a way to make dyes pop out but I don't know how. If I was doing it I would use paint in the areas that you need the bright colors but then you would also need to work at getting it to look good with the other dyed areas. Dave
  2. The Al Stohlman answer is to put your stitches as far in as the leather being sewn is thick. Add up all of the thicknesses of the leather being sewn together and that is your starting point but I don't think it's a hard and fast rule but more of a guideline. If I understand what you are trying to make correctly then I would do the width like this: width of laptop+stitching allowance (roughly the thickness of the leather you are sewing)+ 1/2 of the thickness of the laptop (since you will have one half of the thickness in the top part and one half in the bottom part to make the full thickness)+the bending/fudge factor. I'm not good at the bending/fudge factor yet but I would say to overestimate rather than under since it is better to have a bit too much wiggle room vs. a case that your laptop won't fit into. One of the other reasons I suggest you go a bit big is because (I just discovered today) I seem to get some shrinkage after applying the dye and it has dried. So if you make it a perfect cut out fit and it shrinks even a little bit then you're out of luck. If I was doing it I would probably add about 3/8" on each side for 3/4" total added... maybe even round it up to an even inch. That would put you just a smidge above 16", right? Do a dry run with some paper and see how it goes. I don't know for certain if that would work, hopefully you'll get a more experienced person to chime in in the next few days P.S. This is my third try to make a slipcase for my tablet. The first one was just too narrow. The second one worked fine but I didn't check my math so it was about 1/8" sticking out the end (not a huge deal and it worked great but I had a friend with a tablet that was about 1/8" shorter so I gave it to her)... this one fits perfect (I checked my math four times ).
  3. You would need to account for the thickness of the laptop plus your stitch allowance (the distance from the outer edge of the piece and the inner part of the stitch line) and probably a fudge factor (at least that is what I have had to do) to make sure that it isn't too tight. I'm still trying to figure out how much fudge I need to feed my creations Dave
  4. or doing the non-drill method if you want a slightly more traditional look... http://youtu.be/lCFTDqQaEIc
  5. I will take a stab at it but my knowledge is fairly limited. Carnauba wax comes from the carnauba palm and is the wax with the highest melting point (I think). It is used in car waxes and things like that. Carnauba cream is a product made by Fiebings and instead of being a solid or a paste it is the consistency of lotion (no clue what the other stuff is in it to make it like that). I love the stuff. It gives your leather a wonderful smell and a beautiful shine. It does darken things up a little bit so if that's an issue then you might want to stay clear. I don't know how much protection it provides but I would guess that it is similar to shoe polishes. I've never tried Aussie but I would guess ('guess' is the important thing to remember) that it might be sort of like Montana Pitch Blend (which I also use) or Obenauf's Heavy Duty LP (which I also use and love). I consider these to be a bit more robust than carnauba cream since they are designed for protecting leather under harsh conditions... but maybe carnauba cream does too. I just don't know but I use carnauba cream on just about everything that I do. It gives a nice rich shine to things without making them look like plastic.
  6. I'm not really experienced enough to give you "good" advice but since nobody else seems to have chimed in yet I'll tell you what I do. As soon as I'm done cutting it out I give it a very light coat of neatsfoot oil on the grain side. I give it another light coating again on the grain side after I'm done tooling/dying it and it has dried out. If I'm using thicker leather I might oil it a bit more heavily and maybe a bit on the flesh side and then give it a good 12-24 hours for the oil to completely soak in as deep as possible. But normally I use 7-8 oz. or thinner leather so I just do the two light coats. Dave P.S. But I also like to finish it up with Carnauba creme when I'm done. That is almost always the final step in my normal process.
  7. I'm still very new to this and still trying to work out the design side of things. But... I have started using Inkscape and love it! Usually I scribble something down on paper, then try to work things out onto graph paper, then I'll make it based on my graph paper drawings. If the design works really well and I like it then I make another one but put it together with minimal glue and stitched enough so that it will stay together and I can verify that it's going to fit (really I only need to do this to things that I'm wet forming otherwise I can just skip making another one and start putting it into Inkscape) and then take it apart. Putting it together and taking it apart has the advantage of showing me where stitch lines ended up, snaps were installed, and tooling area boundaries are located. Then I make my template: I then make an Inkscape project and add everything into, including dots for approximate locations for some of the things I mentioned. I will write some notes on the template plus information about what it is and what weight leather I used. Then I save it as a pdf, print out a copy, take a bunch of painters tape loops and put them on the back of the template (I don't cut the template out... I just stick the entire sheet to the leather) and then tape it directly to the leather in the location of the hide that I plan on using. I cut the pattern out using a straight edge on straight lines as much as possible... I cut through the paper and the leather at the same time. Once I'm done "tracing" through the paper and leather then it is all cut out. I've been very happy with that method but I will be getting some acrylic templates from Joyce in the future, mostly for things with curves. This has worked well for me so far (I just started doing this a few weeks ago) and it has the added bonus of print>tape>cut>done and you can do it as many times as you can print out your design Dave
  8. That's what I would guess too. I'm a big fan of Resolene followed by something waxy (Carnauba creme or Obenaufs or something like that). I have had good luck with the advice you get from a lot of folks here who say to dilute the Resolene 50/50 with water, brush on a light coat and keep doing the brushing motion to remove any bubbles or even it out, let it dry (I actually keep lightly brushing until it is almost dry), and do another coat or two. I'm still a newbie myself but that has worked for everything I've done and I like the look I get from the Resolene. Some people, however, don't like the shiny look and prefer to use other things that don't give you the gloss but I don't know anything about those other options. Others will mention that you can get the same thing as Resolene with diluted Mop-n-Glo but I haven't tried that yet. Dave
  9. What I was saying is that if you don't like the finish you get from resolene then go ahead and replace it with something else. But I like resolene and it seems to be one of the better finishes for water/moisture resistance and protecting the leather (and keeping any excess dye from getting on the user). If you don't like it then try something else
  10. I'm still learning but I would add in 2.5 Buff, buff, and more buff and then I do resolene before carnauba cream I would keep the resolene unless it is giving you a finish appearance that you don't like... if so then you should find something to replace it. Now the people that really know what they are doing can answer Dave
  11. I bought one of these from Goldstar Tools. To be honest, the biggest selling point was $19.95 for additional sets. All of the other presses seem to charge more for their sets than Goldstar charges for their entire setter. I don't mind spending $20 for another set but 4x that... not so much. It's not perfect, not a thing of beauty, but it works and it does the job. It has been money well spent just to preserve my sanity (snaps have been the bane of my existence) Dave
  12. Thanks for posting this! I've sent an email and hope to attend the next meeting. I'm not close to much of anything but Okeechobee might be the closest for me. Tampa/Orlando/Okeechobee would all be about the same but Okeechobee wins because... it's not Tampa or Orlando (and the traffic that comes along with that). Dave
  13. I really wish you hadn't done that... because now I feel the need to do something like this too! (haha) I love NW coast native art! It looks really nice. Is the art done separately and glued on (that is sort of what it looks like but I may not be seeing it correctly)? Very good job. Dave
  14. In my (still very limited) experience you have to be careful getting a consistent amount of neatsfoot oil or you increase the chances of this happening too. The flesh side will really soak it up and will also make you want to put on more so that all of it has been oiled. This can lead to putting more in one place that another and more on one piece than another. If you don't have an airbrush to apply it with (I don't) then you have to be careful and/or just apply it to the skin side. I love neatsfoot oil and love that I can use it as a super light colored dye without using dye. But I have also learned to be careful to only apply it on the skin side on thinner leathers and be extra careful when applying it to the flesh side on thicker leather. It sounds a bit like, at least in this case, you will abandon neatsfoot oil but in other projects where you might want to use it this might be good to think about. Dave
  15. I'm still taking leatherworking baby steps... but I'm pretty sure that the temporary refers to keeping the two parts together until you can get them even more permanently together with the stitching. All of the other suggestions were cements and definitely not temporary that could be more easily pulled back apart than the Leather Weld. They are all doing the same thing as the Leather Weld.
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