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Everything posted by rktaylor

  1. I buy stainless steel brads (19 gauge) at our local box store for some stuff, but use mostly 2d and 3d SS nails from McMaster-Carr. I look forward to following your progress. Randy
  2. Ron and Ken, It seems like I fix one problem and then see the next. There are some things that Ken pointed out that need improvement, but it will have to be on the next saddle. I did get the bottom piece pulled up tighter, but that will definitely be a point of focus on the next saddle. I appreciate all the feedback. Randy
  3. Josh and Ron, Thanks for the tips and compliments. I redid this horn with a little more focus on both tails of the wrap. I also attempted to skive the pieces as descried by Ron. It took some thickness out, but I need a couple more reps to improve. I also attached my pattern. The horn cap is larger than I need for this saddle, but I didn't want to make a new pattern. Happy stitching, Randy
  4. I really like the arrowhead basket weave. One of my favorite patterns and yours looks great. Great finish as well. Randy
  5. DanC, Thanks for the tips. I agree its not right. I am mostly relying on the Stohlman books which teach to cover horns like this. I'm just not very good at it, but I'm trying to get better. Ron, Here's a photo of the back and another while it was still wet. Once the cap was sewn, I stretched the underneath piece as tight (I thought) as I could get it. It looked and felt tight. I wrapped the top layer clockwise, pulled, smoothed, and pulled some more. Then wrapped it with my latigo piece and torqued it pretty good (again I thought) with my trusty pool cue. The kicker is that I walked away thinking this looks really good. Then saw it the next morning. I also agree on the filler. I skived the piece to about 8 oz. I probably should have skived all three layers. I knew it was going to look thick because the horn cap is 1.5 inches. Funny thing is, the customer is going to wrap it with an inner tube and start roping as soon as he gets it. Randy
  6. Oltoot, I thought I had some torque on my wrap handle (cut off pool cue), but maybe not enough. I did not use soap, but will give it a try. Everything looked really good while it was still wet. Thanks, Randy
  7. I have struggled a bit getting horn wraps as tight as I want them. I thought this was really tight, but this is what happened after the leather dried. Any clues to my problem? I thought the leather would tighten as it dried. Thanks for any tips. Randy
  8. I used the short post model on some 9-10 oz leather on a kids saddle. I assume the long post fits 13-15 oz. Randy
  9. I think the book talks about two different widths for the strap. I prefer the narrower version and use another piece shown at the top of the photo to distribute the pressure. I rarely use the wider strap. Randy
  10. Ron, Thanks. I appreciate the compliments. As you know, pushing an awl through five layers of leather and coming out at the right spot is tough. I really like the exposed stitches. This turned out fine, but I think I can do better. I would like to clean up my work around the seat ear, but this wasn't too bad. I'm looking forward to applying these lessons learned to the next saddle. I hope the leg is healed. Randy
  11. Thanks Ron, I like the bead lines as well. It is a commission saddle. I like the prairie rose (Jeremiah Watt stamp), but it wouldn't be my top choice. It's about 4 months out for a Swanke tree. It was really nice. I have another Swanke tree that should arrive later this month. It's an Olin Young roper. I plan to take it to the Wichita Falls show in October. Thanks. I appreciation to compliment. Randy
  12. Thanks. It's all Hermann Oak. The rough out is buffed and the rest is #1. Randy
  13. Here's the latest saddle (#9). It's a 15" Will James on Swanke tree. I suppose there's always room for improvement, but I think it turned out fine. I still struggle with welted swell covers. There are a few other things I would like to do over, but not bad enough to actually do them over. Critique and comments are appreciated. Randy
  14. Thanks for the advice. I'm looking forward to getting this off my inventory. Randy
  15. Any advice on shipping a saddle? I just completed my first saddle that isn't staying close by. It seems like taking the fenders and stirrup leathers off would be a good idea. Maybe I should just get a bigger box. Thanks, Randy
  16. I guess it depends on the store. I gripe a lot about not having a true hardware store. All we have is a national chain store. I order almost all of my stainless steel screws and nails from McMaster-Carr. I'm not sure what tools you want. Randy
  17. Jared, I hoped some more experienced makers would have provided a critique. I am currently working on #9 so take my comments for what they're worth. Most of them may simply be a preference. First off, for a second effort, I think this is pretty good and I commend you for finding an experienced saddle maker to work under. Your stamping looks great. The basket weave is really uniform and the border is great. From what I can see in the pictures, the swell cover looks tight and the lacing is good. It looks like you take a lot of pride in your edges. The seat ears are obvious. I personally like saddle strings there instead of the screw. I just think it looks better. I also prefer a more defined seat jockey. It's probably a little harder to accomplish on a saddle this large. The front jockey looks like it could be cut a little shorter to align with the rear jockey, but that may just be the picture angles. If it were cut higher, the seat jockey would be more defined. From what I can see the rear jockeys seem tight against the cantle back, but not as tight against the skirts. This is certainly one area where I try to focus improvement. It's one of the first places I look when critiquing a saddle. Kudos on the exposed stitching on the cantle binding. That's a bold move for a second saddle and it looks like you did pretty good. Good luck on #3, I look forward to seeing it soon. Randy
  18. I sewed 5 saddles by hand with this. I bought it at Panhandle Leather. Randy
  19. I try to get a saddle out of two sides, but mistakes that I can't live with sometimes cost me. If you have your patterns before you start cutting, you can be more efficient. I pretty much stick to 13/15 Hermann Oak. I plug skirts just like Jeremiah Watt, leaving the space under the leg without plugs. I want to make sure the skirt corners have some stiffness. Good luck, Randy
  20. Thanks to all. I'll do a couple test pieces as soon as I get a warm day. Randy
  21. Thanks. I'm also curious about other methods of anyone wants to share. Randy
  22. Thanks. What's your recipe and procedure for bees wax and olive oil? Randy
  23. Thanks. I'll take the disclaimer into consideration. Randy
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