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About Tugadude

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    Leatherworker.net Regular

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  • Gender
  • Location
    St. Louis, MO
  • Interests
    Leathercraft, vintage bicycles and my family.

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
  • Interested in learning about
    To improve my skills and respect the craft
  • How did you find leatherworker.net?
    Surfing for examples of leatherwork

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  1. Tugadude


    John James harness needles.
  2. The quote attributed to me is incorrect. That is what the OP said.
  3. Have you tried a Fiskars rotary knife? They don't drag or stretch the leather.
  4. Couple of things might be going on. First, which diamond chisels do you have? And how many teeth? Do you have a 2-tooth chisel? You'll want to use a 2-tooth chisel to do the radiused portions. Corners only exist if you square off the stitching really, like a 90 degree angle. In that case, you want a round hole, not a diamond-shaped hole in order for the stitching to look the same on both sides of the hole. Nigel Armitage calls this a "hinge" and trust me, it looks far better than trying to use a flat awl or a diamond-shaped chisel. So use your big chisel, 4 to 10 tooth or whatever up until it begins curving and then you switch to the 2-tooth until it flattens out again and repeat as necessary. As far as the orientation of the stitches, you have to choose which side of the work you wish to be the "front", even if technically both sides could be considered a "front". Then stay consistent with your needle priority. There is usually a difference between the front and the back stitching lines. It can be minimized using various techniques and adding a cast to the stitching process, basically a half-knot. This is explained in Nigel's videos on stitching. Another thing that greatly affects the angle of the stitching is the overall thickness of the leather. Very thin leather makes it hard to get a good angle on the back. I find the more layers I'm working with the better the backside is going to appear. So if you haven't already, please take the time to go to youtube and look at Nigel's videos. He talks at great length on stitching chisels, how they are properly used, how they differ from pricking irons, etc. He covers the basic saddle stitch in detail and you'll find it very informative. Good luck! And by the way, your projects would be cherished if you were to give them away "as-is". They were lovingly handmade. What's better than that?
  5. Tugadude


    What size are the boots and how set on marrying him is your daughter? My initials don't match, but I can always change my name. Seriously though, they are remarkable and something to cherish.
  6. Couple of comments. First, welcome to the forum and your first efforts are so much better than mine, there is no comparison. You are off to a good start. What I've found is leather work is like anything else, the better you get the more you realize how much you need to improve. What was once acceptable to your eyes suddenly becomes an eyesore and is headed to the bin. The process of refinement, improving every little detail is what makes work stand out. There are many on this site that pay that sort of attention to detail and when you look at their work it just shines. It really is remarkable. The thing is all of us can improve. We might never reach the level of some workers, but we can improve nonetheless. Regarding stitching, that is something that gets easier with practice. And your fingers will adapt. If you aren't using them already I suggest you make yourself some pinky sleeves, little leather tubes that go over your pinky fingers to help them to not get sore when you are pulling your stitches tight. Some have very sensitive fingertips and even a short stitch line can cause pain. I've never suffered from that, but I suppose if I did, then a machine would be the practical solution. Personally, I prefer hand stitching and even when I do briefcases with miles of stitching I don't mind a bit. I'm lucky that my fingers don't bark at me I guess. Keep up the good work!
  7. I restore and collect vintage bicycles, mainly road bikes and can attest that black is truly the best color if you intend to ride the bike. I've put blue, green, brown and white bar tape on my bikes and after only a short time, they all appear dirty. Black doesn't. So in the end, while it might seem boring it is practical.
  8. Another option is to treat the interior with Tan Kote or Gum Tragacanth and burnish it with a glass slicker of a bone folder. Time will smooth the interior out, but this speeds up the process. P.S. Some use a mixture of 50% beeswax and 50% Neatsfoot Oil, but I have no experience with it. It has to be mixed on a stove I think. Use extreme caution if doing so!
  9. Ordinarily I don't care much for lacing. But I have to admit this looks very nice. You did an excellent job keeping everything consistent. Kudos!
  10. Same reason titanium was used to market everything from golf balls to cookware. Now it seems to be copper. Copper is added to everything it seems. I waiting for the tactical toilet paper infused with copper. Maybe it will come on a titanium core?
  11. Many modern irons have straight teeth with a very gradual taper. They might be considered a hybrid in that they can function as both pricking and stitching irons.
  12. Those irons are pricking irons and do have straight, not diamond teeth. I helped start a topic in the 'Sewing Leather" part of the forum to help folks like you to differentiate between stitching irons and pricking irons. The ones you bought are high quality and can be used as stitching irons or chisels on relatively thin leather.
  13. I agree and pointed out that they look like slits and not diamond-shaped holes.
  14. Welcome! Doing as well as can be expected in this mixed-up world.
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