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About kseidel

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  • Birthday 02/25/1965

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    Cody, Wyoming
  • Interests
    Fishing, Hunting, Riding Horses, Shooting, Reloading, Silversmithing, Camping, Traveling, Art,

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
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  1. You can get them directly from Blevins in Wheatland WY. They will sell direct in small quantities. Keith
  2. There are a lot of differences in the styles that you referenced. Mainly relative to the time period when these saddles were in production and their usage. Much is relative to the evolution of American saddle making over the past 150 years. The Hope style is one of the earliest of the "western" style of saddles. It is a hybrid combination of European and American plantation style saddles with some of the earliest examples of carved/stamped decorations in the leather found in America. Horned saddles were not necessary until post Civil War when wild cattle were rounded up and driven to market, marking the beginning of the "cowboy" era. Basically all saddles were slick fork swells until the turn of the last century, when shaped swells began to show up by innovative saddlemakers to meet the demands of the cowboys. The Mexican Vaquero influence can also be seen in the early southwestern saddles and can be credited for some of the development of our modern Wade saddles with the large post horn. The "Wade," as we know it, did not show up till about 1940. Visallia Saddle Co. make very popular slick fork saddles with steel horns from the late 1800's thru the 50's. Their 3B is still a very popular slick fork swell still today. Much of this can be researched using old saddle catalogs. Keith
  3. Ante up and buy some flower center stamps. They are worth the investment. Keith
  4. Generally speaking, acorn/oak is more forgiving and patterns can be easier to draw and do not have as much variety and detail in the elements of the pattern, and do not require as many tools. There are many styles in the field of floral carving. Some are fairly simple and basic, while others are very detailed and intricate. They are totally different styles and appeal to different clients. Preferences can be somewhat geographic.
  5. There are no set "rules" on how you should run these tools. I like to cut the outside line and bead to the inside. I do not cut the second bead line, but rather press it quite deep and go back and forth to create a deep burnished bead with the tool. I like to push bevel the outside cut line away from the bead. You can cut your line and place your bead any distance from the edge that you want. This is all relative to how you design your pattern.
  6. The tool you are describing is not a push beader, but rather an edge creaser. An edge creaser has one longer leg that hangs off the edge of the leather, and a shorter leg that makes a crease in the leather. This is usually not a very sharp tool and makes a slightly rounded groove in the leather but does not cut thru the surface. A beader has two sharp edges of the same length with a rounded groove in the middle. Either edge can be placed into a swivel knife cut and pushed into the leather along the cut line. The second line actually cuts into the leather and leaves a rounded "bead between these two lines. A beader blade does the same thing but is designed to put into a swivel knife.
  7. You ask how the professionals do this... we do not use a stitch groover to cut tooling lines. We use a swivel knife to cut the first line marked with a wing divider, and then follow up with a beader blade or a push beader to create the parallel line with a rounded "bead" between the lines.
  8. The technique you are describing is called a blind stitch. It is very common with cutters and show saddles. It can be done very well and holds up well. The swell cover is fitted on the tree and cut so the edges butt together. Then the cover is removed and stitched together from the back side with the threads going thru the leather diagonally and not breaking the surface. Things to be aware of when covering a swell this way.... 1) do not fit the swell cover too tight to the tree. The leather will shrink when it dries and if too tight it will pull a gap in the seam and the stitches will show. 2) Keep stitches close together. No more than 1/4 inch between stitch holes. 3) use thick swell cover so there is enough thickness for stitches. You don't want the stitches to be closer to the surface than the epidermis layer of the hide. I have made a lot of saddles with blind stitched swells. Good Luck. Keith
  9. This style of rubber hammer is very effective for forming swell covers over undercut swells. It really helps to work out those wrinkles. It works best to pull as much slack into the hand hole and front gullet as possible before trying to sweat the cover over the rest of the swell.
  10. Bruce is correct in his reply. However, this swell cover is not that hard to remove, and if the job warrants, it is easy enough to remove and recover the horn under the swell cover as original. Keith
  11. What version of this measuring system do you have for sale?
  12. You are gettin the idea! Much improvement in your working toward a purpose. Keep practicing. Work on mastering each tool. It is okay (and even preferred) to copy other toolers work until you are able to make yours look like theirs. You will learn to draw your own patterns as you gain experience working with other established patterns. Keep up the GOOD WORK!
  13. Good job! Now you are closer to having a plan and purpose for the look you are trying to make with the tools you are using. Draw in your finish cuts before you cut them in the leather. It is most profitable to practice right and learn the right way. Much harder to un-learn bad practices. As you go forward, try to make each cut and stamp perfect... exactly where and how you want. Practice perfection! Good luck! Keith
  14. You are practicing trying to learn how to carve and stamp the leather, without a good understanding of what you want as a finished look. I would encourage you to draw or trace the pattern on paper, and then shade in all of the details with your pencil. Black out the background, shade, draw all of the veins and mule tracks, etc, and draw in the finish cuts. Be as precise as you can. Then when you stamp in leather, try to duplicate what you have drawn as precisely as possible. What you are doing now is very haphazzard and make-it-up as you go, without a specific plan, and that shows in your finished work.
  15. I highly advise that you try to spend a few days in Sheridan, Wyoming during the Rocky Mountain Leather Trade Show, May 15-20, 2018. There are several classes being taught on the construction of saddles. The information will be invaluable to you at this stage. Keith
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