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Everything posted by fredk

  1. Wet form your tray and clamp the corners. When they've dried they should hold the shape and snaps should hold them together
  2. There is a way which I use but would not recommend on new quality boots or bags as if it goes wrong the item can be ruined You need to break through the top finish. To do that I wash the item down with cellulose thinners. A lot of. I really scrub it down. This removes the top finish and also removes some of the dyed colour, leaving the item looking a mess of patchwork of very pale areas of dyed and maybe dye-removed places. Then I wash it down with soapy water. Whilst its still drying I start to put the dye colour I want on. The dye is thinned down. It takes several coats of dye to get the colour built up and even. When the dye is looking good the item gets an oiling with Neetsfoot Oil as the oils in the item were removed by the cellulose thinners, After the item has dried I give it a feed and polish with a beeswax mixture I use.
  3. You're both well ahead of me! I'm still getting organised. I got to a shop this morning and picked up a block of lard I'll be back, later, dudes
  4. dunno about 'cats pee' smell. Its not a scent I know too well. But, yes, some leathers do have odd scents. I have some that has such a strong bad scent I can't keep it near me for too long. It might have something to do with where the leather originated and their method of tanning Can you, or are you able, to hang the leathers up some place where they can get a lot of air circulating around them?. A real way-out suggestion; hang them up and have a big barbie. Let the smoke from the barbie circulate around them
  5. I hadn't even thought of lard. Any amount of fat I get from my cooked bacon is not enuf to fill a teaspoon. Bacon and pork are just the same, one word is derived from the original Anglo-Saxon for pig and the other is derived from the original Norman-French for pig. The same for almost anything about cows Anyway, I can buy lard in the supermarket. I think its beef lard though as the shops here are catering more and more for the Jewish and Muslim shoppers. Its actually getting harder to buy anything pork-ish in some of our supermarkets. I think the lard has salt and food preservatives added. But as we are testing commonly available oils that might be ok ah, good on yer. I never considered mink oil. I even relocated several tins of it just on Friday too! Just another thought; all leather test pieces should be about the same thickness. Yet another variable! I mostly use thin leather. I do have some up to 11oz /4.5mm but my stock of leathers is mostly in the 4oz to 6oz / 1mm to 2.6mm thickness range. I think I'll use about 2.4/2.6mm thick. And I'm down sizing the test pieces. 6x4 inches is not necessary. Half that size should be big enuf, maybe even just 3 x 3 inches would do edited to add a PS This is gonna take up some leather. Make shure you can spare it Also, the same oil may react differently to a piece of the leather of a slightly different area. eg when I was making some coin purses all the parts were cut from the same hide. I marked some pieces which were from right next to each other on the hide. When it came to the dyeing they came out different shades, one part might end up a bright green and the other part dark green. On some that I dyed 'light' blue some parts were bright blue but their matching part almost a midnight blue. All dyed at the same time and in the same way with the same dye The oils might do the same. But we shall see I have to do some rivet sorting today
  6. At a local store I buy lightweight zippers 6 for £1 and heavy duty ones 4 for £1.50 - thats about 17p per light and 25p for heavy, Lengths available are only 6, 8, 10 & 12 inch, Same price for which ever chosen. For continuous lengths I get it either from Le Prevo or a sewing shop in England. afair the heavy duty was £1 per meter with discount on long lengths. The last lot I bought wasn't for me but for someone else, afair 10m was about £6 or £7 inc delivery, and included some stops and pull things
  7. Caveat, I don't make gun holsters, but I do study them Every tut I've read from holster makers from long ago up to recent times mostly, almost always, instruct just to take the design just around the fold bend by an inch or two and, afair, a lot of the original holsters examined in 'Packing Iron' are of the same, with the design either ending before the fold bend, on the fold, or just an inch or two past it on the rear I think, and its only my opinion, ultimately, if you want to do the stamping do it, if you want to reproduce an old real example do it as it was done. Its not lazy to not do it When I made copies of medieval or viking knife sheaths, which are usually one piece folded around and sewn, I've always done the design all the way around, just as the original was done
  8. Tallow is something I cannot get or make. Due to the UK having BSE* in cattle a long time ago its illegal for butchers to sell beef fats and other parts and even porcine fats and parts are restricted but for another reason But I may be able to get pork fats, but not for a while Anyway, I have enuf oils to test I don't think we need copy each other's tests, but I think they'll be similar anyway. I'm off to the shops soon to get supplies *BSE = Bovine Spongiform Encephalitis
  9. Two thoughts. 1. is there any small things you can do on the kits to prepare them beforehand? 2. use a stop watch to time every step, including the gaps between. 3. write your spiel down, edit it, look for where one or two words can replace 4 or 6 words I've been asked to do a 'class' to make my key-ring coin purses. I'll have approx 1 hour 20 minutes. I've timed each step. I've made adjustments to the making and I've taken the spiel about types of leather and threads from the beginning to the time the ladies will be sewing the purses up. I've cut 1/2 a minute here and there and took off 1/2 an hour. I've prepared the thread by making wenzels with the needle already threaded, I've pre-made up the key-ring part so they won't have to do that, but as they fit it to the purse its then I'll explain the parts
  10. I won't start the oiling just yet. I don't have enuf 3-in-1 and I'm out of olive. I'll not be shopping until Monday or Tuesday next week @SUP, I might be teaching 'granny to suck eggs' - remember to measure the quantity of the oil you'll be putting on your leather so each piece getting that oil gets the same amount. You don't need anything special to measure, a soup spoon, an egg cup, an aluminum or waxed paper bun case We are on page 3 now. This is gonna end up a loooong thread PS; I'm going to keep a note book. I'll divide it onto sections so each test piece can get its own report
  11. yes, like that. I didn't even know the name for that, There used to be a shop in the UK which sold the wire ones. They sold lots of old-style but new stock car parts for refurbishing our old cars. Some modern competition drivers used to use the wire loop ones to hold their bonnet/hood and boot/trunk lid down. Maybe use a modern s/s one. Would look more like the original ?
  12. I want to share/discuss some reasoning for why I/we should do this. Its long winded, so look away now This is THE foremost site for leather working information. We should become a Primary source of information on the use of these common oils I've been studying history for over 50 years and early on I learnt to use primary sources first, then secondary and then tertiary Primary info is; Me, if I tell you I was in Castle Street, Belfast when a terrorist bomb blew a local bar apart and I was slightly injured and I helped the injured Secondary info is; my friend who tells you my story to you Tertiary is; my friend's sister, who tells you my story as she heard it from her brother After tertiary we just call it anecdotal and more-or-less ignore it All this in practical use; Some years ago I was a beekeeper. Due to disease and invasive pests there was a shortage of honey bees in the UK. A real shortage. A friend and I got together and we imported queen bees from parts of Europe and cross-bred them to get disease and pest resistant lines of bees. There was a large bee keeping conference in Belfast one year. And one of the points to be discussed was the banning of us doing this because we were damaging the lineage of the natural Irish honey bee. A very eminent bee keeper of outstanding character gave his written reasoning in a 30 minute lecture. It took me 10 minutes to refute his claims using 4 Primary sources and 3 secondary ones; I had obtained copies of ancient letters, one from a monk who was asking the pope for permission to import honey bees, from his home monastery in North Eastern France, because there were none in Ireland so he could not make bees wax candles for his church. Another letter was from 150 years later, a viking businessman's letter to one of his partners in Denmark ordering several hundred bee hives with bees because there were no honey bees in Ireland so they were unable to make mead and had to import the mead. Thats 2 primary. The third was a copy of a letter from a UK government inspector who reported in 1917 that the recent 'Isle of Wight' disease had wiped out every bee colony in Ireland, He could not find a single one. The 4th primary was a UK letter back to the inspector telling him that he would be getting so many hundreds of new bee colonies from the 10, 000 the UK were importing from Denmark to replace all the colonies wiped out by the disease So we have 3 x primary over a period of about 1400 years telling us that at certain times there were no honey bees in Ireland and 3 x primary telling us bees were imported from other countries Another, maybe a primary source, or maybe secondary, was another bee keeper. A top scientist who lectured at Queens University and did work for the our local government. One of his specialties was looking at the DNA of plants and insects. When he first heard me say about the monk and viking importing bees he had run DNA tests on honey bees. He and his students had got several hundreds of bees from all over Ireland, Their results were; the bees in the West and South-West were the same as Icelandic bees, bees in the South-East, the East were a mix of Norwegian and Danish, and the bees in the North were Danish. There was no separate lineage to indicate a separate Irish honey bee The second secondary source was the report from an eminent entomologist, made in the 1960s, that after years of research that the 'native Irish 'Black' honey bee' was a myth and that honey bees were not indigenous to the island of Ireland A third secondary was a research paper which listed the ancient Irish laws. Giving the penalties and compensation to be paid for certain offences and within those, which changed only slightly over 1000 year period, the mention of honey bees only shows up 10 years after the monk's letter and never before. So let us become that primary source. Our experiment may be imperfect but at least our information will not be, I read it in a book published in 1974 and they got it from such-a-such book published in 1929 sort of thing Sorry for the long ramble
  13. I know this fitting I think. I've seen it on straps on some, just a few, cars in my vintage car club. Its like a buckle but not a buckle. Its like two hinged loops. One short loop is attached to item or end of a strap. The tongue of the strap goes through a gap between the loops and the second loop hinges over gripping the strap between the loops and that loop locks down in place. Endless adjustment without holes in the strap. Rather like how the fitting on a HGV cargo strap works, but nicer looking. But I don't know a name for it
  14. If mold happens it happens. Its part of the experiment. To see if any oils encourage or discourage the growth of mold PS. been thinking thunks about cars in my motor club. Some of the cars, especially the larger ones have leather gaiters around their leaf springs. My car should have them around the rear springs as well. Servicing of the gaiters, other than inspecting and repair of rips, the gaiters should regularly get a good dosing of used engine oil to water-proof them
  15. Its a very imperfect experiment. Its just see what happens, first in the short term and secondly in the longer term, but not the forever range. Its just to see, are certain oils really bad for leather? We all have our own stories. This is just a few simple tests, maybe to help dispel myths or even to prove the stories correct Myth Busters Beware! We're a commin! yes, I'm still thinking on them. Earlier I said we should put each oil/product on about 3 pieces from different hides So at least 9 test pieces, plus a control piece of each. Ech test piece will have to be at least the size of a postcard, about 6 x 4 inches Lets say test pieces from 3 different veg tan hides So, I'm thinking A. 1 of 3 will go in my 'drying' car. Its front screen points almost direct due south, about 176*. It gets the full sun on it all day. Even on cloudy days it gets hot inside. Not as hot as you would get there, but hot enough to almost fry an egg. During the night it gets colder, not until winter will it get to near or below freezing, but only down to about -1 or -2 inside the car at the lowest, about late January time B. 1 of 3 will be hung outside my flat. It will be subjected to wind, rain sunshine and damp (coldish) night air, 24/7 C. 1 of 3 will be carried in my pockets. I'll rotated them into different pockets so they each get time in different pocket, getting different amounts of wear and body temperature As I type this I'm reckoning each of those needs a plain control piece with them And I'm now thinking of maybe cutting some test pieces just so they can be slipped on my belt, to see how they fare on there I'm gonna skip having threads on the test pieces. Eliminate one uncontrollable variable I might add in Neets Foot Oil Compound to the tests Any results I get will of course just be for my environment and any results SUP gets will be for her (?) area And the thickness of the test pieces will affect results as well You got any suggestions or comments? I hope to get organised on this soon
  16. Thank you Just a remembrance; I used to make hand-cream using beeswax, olive oil and lavender oil. Sometimes I have used this on my leather items. I don't think the olive oil ever did any harm to the leather
  17. I'm surprised by the contents of this thread In over 23 years of leather working I have never ever had any bleed from any type of pre-dyed leather
  18. This is not about paypal itself but your payments to others using paypal Hidden in the 'agreement' that a lot of sellers use is a clause for automatic payments via paypal Who reads that 'agreement'? We just click the box that says we have then we proceed to make the payment Recently I noticed that two payments each of 16p was taken by Royal Mail from my paypal balance. Not much, but I had not authorised these payments ~ but yet I had No explanation from RM why or what for I tracked the payments through to the 'automatic' payments in my paypal account settings It appears that on two occasions when I bought parcel postage on line I had allowed automatic payments to be taken. Probably by just clicking on the wee box that I'd read the T&Cs I was able to disable these as well any future ones One night recently I bought two lots of RM postage so in the morning after I went to my paypal account settings to check the automatic payments There were no RM ones but there was one for Jadlam ( a plastic model retailer I buy from) and one for KOBO (an ebook seller I use for my KOBO ) They are now disabled There was also two for ebay but I left them active as I use ebay a lot and if I disable them it would, allegedly, cause problems with my buying & paying on ebay Therefore; I suggest, if you have a paypal account, go check for automatic payments To get to see them you go through to your account settings using the wee gear wheel at the top of the main page Log in to your paypal account. On the home screen, click on the settings cogwheel to open a new page. Click on payments Scroll down to Automatic Payments Disable the ones you want, then check the active payments button to ensure it is disabled. Repeat above step as required Log Out.
  19. Good choices last first; No You lot in the US have a greater range of funny types of leather than I can get. I'll not be using chrome tan, just veg. I don't have any oil tanned as far as I know. I reckon Ill try some standard veg from Tandy, some from Italy and some from Argy/South America I got from Le Prevo
  20. @Sheilajeanne a local Lord has in his tack room a most bootiful saddle made in Italy in 1812. Its still in use but not daily. He also has carriage tack from about 1780s -1820s. I can only get to see this Lord once a year, when my car club play within his estate, and we did that at the end of August. Now I'd shure like to find who looks after his tack and have a talk with that person
  21. @SUP Remember to keep one piece of each leather free of any oils. Its your base reference I reckon I'll be using; rapeseed oil, vaseline, Johnson's baby oil and 3-in-1 oil I too buy my threads for their colours and/or thickness. I think polyester thread can 'rot'. Long story short; we have about 350 BMW steering wheels. Sewn with polyester thread. About 2/3 or more of them the thread is or has 'rotted' and is breaking down
  22. Good plan. I'll sew some of my usual threads into the leather. But most of my thread is bonded nylon which resists most chemicals and lasts a long time. About 10 years ago I cleared out my father's fishing tackle box. One reel was still full of bonded nylon line. It was from about 1956 (supporting evidence) and was soaking in some sort of oily mixture. After cleaning the nylon line was still usable. Test strength was about 50lb. I used it as leader for beach casting for several years yes. recently I found in the back and bottom of my spare threads drawer several, 8 iirc, wenzels of linen thread from when I started leather working 23 years ago. Each card had about 10m of thread, black, brown and white. I'd bought them from Le Prevo. Some of each had deteriorated. As I unwound the thread off the cards the thread came apart in short sections, and the ends of those sections were separating into individual tiny fibres
  23. I had a big roll of leathers damaged by meeces. They got into the very centre of the roll and chewed through several layers for to make their nests. Holes the size of a woman's fist right through each hide. None of that leather had any treatment at all. And they'd pee'd on it as well
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