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  1. LederMaschinist

    Can a binding attachment do this?

    I didn't describe it in the post, but I agree. Both stitch lines, the one inside the binding, and the one parallel to it went through both leather and foam. Since thread is cheap, and leather is expensive, I have found that EVA craft foam that you can get at just about any craft store, is a good stand in for leather when trying something new. I get it in 1/16" and just double it up to simulate thicker leather if need be. Using the proper thickness, it will give you an accurate picture of the required dimensions. It also behaves much like a soft oil tanned leather in the way it stretches.
  2. LederMaschinist

    Can a binding attachment do this?

    Thanks for the replies. After seeing them, I'm kind of glad I didn't try a binding attachment. It sounds like a "maybe" solution that would take a lot of fussing to get to work properly. If I were going to be making a hundred of these mats, I would probably reconsider. I did some test pieces last night, and this method worked fairly well. On the first attempt I used cement along the edge to hold the pieces face to face before running the first stitch line, and ended up with something that looked pretty decent, if somewhat bulkier than I expected. I didn't have any double sided tape, but one of the keys to good appearance was to keep everything straight, and to cement all the interior surfaces of the folds and wrap. On the second attempt, I realized I didnt need a strip at all, which is nice, because I don't have to hack apart my hides to cut long strips out of them. The outer edge can simply be folded over, grain to grain, stitched through close to the edge, and then folded back over and under, and then a line of stitching run parallel to the folded edge which holds the edge of the leather in place on the bottom, and gives a nice looking stitch detail on the top. With this 5oz leather and 1/8" of padding, it requires about 1.75" material width to complete the folds and wrap. I found the bulk was significantly reduced and the appearance further enhanced by skiving the 1.75" at the edge down to about 1/2 thickness before any folding. I'll see about posting some pictures this evening, as I think the method really turned out pretty nice. Now I just have to figure out how to do corners and radiuses.
  3. I'm planning on making some work mats, and would like to bind the edges. The top layer of the mat will be a 5/6oz layer of oil tanned leather. The bottom layer of the mat will be dense 1/8" foam rubber, to provide padding and prevent slipping around. To prevent the foam rubber from delaminating at the edges with use and to also provide a small rim around the edge of the mat, I'd like to bind the edges with a strip of 5/6oz leather strap made from the same leather as the top surface. Ideally I'd like the stitches to go through all 4 layers (top binding, work surface, foam rubber, bottom binding). I made some attempts at doing this without an attachment, and because everything was sort of "squishy" it was very difficult to get a uniform edge. The other possibility Is I simply fold the top layer of leather under and glue it to the bottom of the foam rubber and then stitch. I played with that a bit, but still had some difficulty due to the squishyness. I'm pretty sure there attachments to handle the leather binding strip, but the introduction of the foam rubber layer and the thickness of the binding strap are what is leading me to question the feasibility. The machine I plan to do this on is a Singer 144w long arm walking foot machine. It's my only walking foot machine.
  4. LederMaschinist

    Need help with Singer 7-33

    Technically cast iron can be welded, but it requires the correct filler rod, and very careful preheating. If your friend is experienced in welding cast iron, they might do it successfully. If done improperly often the cast iron will spontaneously break next to the weld repair at exactly the most inconvenient moment. If they aren't experienced in welding cast iron, it's much easier to brass or bronze braze the repair. Suggest this to them if they can do it. The other possibility, and certainly the easier solution is to measure the diameter of the top shaft where the wheel mounts, and replace it with an off the shelf sheave (pulley) of your choice. Going this route, you can use an even larger wheel, which will further slow the machine and increase torque. You'll lose the traditional Singer look, but you will end up with a solution that can be even more functional than the part you replaced.
  5. LederMaschinist

    Fortuna Skiving Machine Restoration

    If you haven't gotten that clamping screw loose yet, forget all the penetrating oil and heat. Those sometimes work, but this is the tool you need and it has never failed me. It's called an impact driver. You put the proper screwdriver bit in it, put it on the screw and whack it with a mallet. It simultaneously puts pressure on the screw to keep the bit from slipping, and also turns the screw to loosen it. This tool will usually loosen the most stubborn screw without even damaging the screw head. You do have to securely hold whatever part it is that you are working on, because it will take the full force from the mallet blow. https://www.amazon.co.uk/TEKTON-2905-8-Inch-Manual-7-Piece/dp/B000NPPATS/
  6. LederMaschinist

    Drum thickness sander for thinning leather.

    I've though about building a hand cranked machine from scratch. I actually do a lot of grinding and cutter work in my day job, and in my opinion the blade would actually be the easy part. I thought about modifying a purchased rolling mill used for jewelry making and such. It basically already has everything but the splitting blade already there. The bottom roller would have to be textured for grip, and perhaps mounted on springs to apply even pressure on leather that's uneven in initial thickness. The other route I have considered is basically a guided "plane" where the blade follows closely behind a roller that would apply pressure to the leather to hold it in place and and ensure it's pressed flat against the work surface. The plane would ride on a rail suspended over the work surface and would shave a strip about 1" wide. The working idea would be you lay the piece of leather on the work surface, grain side down, and pull or push the plane across the leather. Then you'd advance the leather over slightly less than the width of the cutter, and take another pass. You'd basically thin the leather in 1" wide passes more or less "mowing" it thinner. Even a large piece would go quickly. And size would only be limited by the length of the rail that the plane rides on. I'd use inexpensive linear rail with a bearing block to guide the plane.
  7. LederMaschinist

    All leather closure methods for items like boxes and cases?

    Some good stuff here. Thanks for all the replies. How about some methods that maybe are a little more Old West style, or perhaps Indiana Jones style? Billy, do you by any chance have a closer shot of those friction "buckles"?
  8. Hi all. I'm looking for various methods of closing containers like wet formed cases and such. I know snaps and buckles are always an option, but at this point I'm more interested in methods that don't require any purchased hardware, and are an all leather solution. Something like a tab that slips through a loop and other possibilities. Can people share examples here of methods they like to use on their own work, or maybe from examples floating around the internet? Thanks.
  9. LederMaschinist

    Drum thickness sander for thinning leather.

    I like your style RockyAussie. If you can't get it, just make it. Although it appears you have a bit of a rust issue going on there. Call it coastal patina. I was going to provide links to drum sanders from craigslist in Australia, but sure enough, I couldn't find a single one for sale. Here's the type of sander I'm talking about if anyone isn't sure what I'm referring to: https://www.grizzly.com/products/Grizzly-12-1-1-2-HP-Baby-Drum-Sander/G0459
  10. LederMaschinist

    1st (wallet) and 2nd (holster) projects.

    Hi all, I've been enjoying the forum and have slowly been assembling a hobby leather studio in my basement. I finally got around to making a few items, instead of just messing around. Here are some pictures. I'd appreciate any tips or critique I could use to improve future projects. My first project was a simple card wallet. I used scrap veg tan from one of those $20, 2 pound scrap bags. Edges are glued, sanded, wet burnished, and sealed with beeswax. Finish was simply some neatsfoot, and Tandy's carnauba finish wax. It has about a month of use on it at this point and the outside is darkening nicely. I punched the stitch holes from the inside out without a proper backing pad, so I'm not real happy with the stitching appearance on the outside. Also, I used bonded machine thread to do the saddle stitch, and it has gone somewhat fuzzy on the outside. Any way to prevent the fraying? My 2nd project is a holster for a rifle bolt. The leather is cheap veg tan, I bought off Amazon. The interior is fully lined with inexpensive glazed black pigskin. The outside was dyed with Fiebing's Pro Dye in Saddle Tan, with a carnauba wax finish coat. The edges were sanded, wet burnished, dyed with black industrial sharpie, burnished, beeswaxed, and polished with a cloth. The machine stitching was done on my modified Singer 95, with 138 bonded nylon, and the hand stitching was done with Tandy's braided waxed thread. I'm very happy with how things turned out, especially the saddle stitching. I had done some test pieces to set the tension on my machine, and thought I had it nailed. A little disappointed when I flipped the project over and saw that it needed more adjustment. Next time, I will probably use a black bobbin thread, because I don't think the interior stitching really adds any interest. On future leather cases like the holster, I'm interested in using an all leather arrangement for closure. Some sort of strap and loop setup. Does anyone have some examples of methods of doing this without any metal hardware?
  11. LederMaschinist

    Drum thickness sander for thinning leather.

    I am a machinist in my day job. In what little time I have left over I have started to dabble in leathercrafting. I've been putting together a little studio in my basement over the last 8 months or so. One of the abilities I'm lacking at the moment is the ability to split or thin leather in any way that's useful. I have actually designed and built several metalworking machines for my business, and the gears are now spinning again. I've been tossing around some designs for setups that would allow a home based leatherworker to split or thin leather at home in a useful and affordable way. True splitting might be out of the realm of possibility, so that's why I also say thinning.
  12. LederMaschinist

    Drum thickness sander for thinning leather.

    Your setup here was actually the precursor to my post. I have seen an older thread or two where you showed this setup. What you basically have here is a sanding drum (belt roller) and a table (wooden rest). This setup is what made me think a thickness sander would probably work, assuming there are no feed issues. It's seems there is a large gap in the leather splitting category. You have choices of little machines that can't really manage anything wider than a belt blank, or industrial band splitters and roller splitters costing thousands. Drum sanders are readily available on the resale market fir under $500. It's possible they could help fill that gap.
  13. LederMaschinist

    Drum thickness sander for thinning leather.

    Nice. Cool idea with the car tire. Wood planers usually use feed rollers, but most sanders use a rubber conveyor system. You're probably correct about the rollers, although I think it depends a bit on which way the drum spins in relation to the feed. With wood, you'd definitely want the drum to spin against the feed direction, but with leather it might be advantageous to spin the drum with the feed to prevent bunching.
  14. I've been looking all over for an affordable splitter that would be useful for pieces larger than a belt blank. I'll get lucky someday. In the meantime, I've been thinking about whether a thickness sander could do the job. Obviously the split would be turned to dust, but it would offer a lot more flexibility in sourcing leather if I could just buy the thickest available. I'm referring to the type of sander that is intended for thinning lumber. The drum is horizontally oriented and there is a feed mechanism that feeds the lumber through the sander. Many of these machines are capable of sanding veneers and other thin cuts, so it seems they might work for leather. I have trouble believing no one has tried this, but I have looked all over and can't find any references to the practice. And before someone suggests it, I'm not interested in using a random orbit or belt sander to do the job. A knife is far superior to those options. Has anyone tried this? Does it seem like a stupid idea?
  15. LederMaschinist

    Info Request: American Straight Needle

    Thanks for the info. Looks like going in the back of the car is out of the question. Getting them on a trailer would certainly be easier. I may be able to do it myself with a hand truck. Cant be anymore difficult than the 800lb lathe I moved in and out of my basement, split into two parts.