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  1. Here's a pic of a kudu hide messenger bag I finished recently. Hand stitched and riveted. Kudu is a fantastic material to work with. It's very soft and flexible, but tough as old boots too. Ideal for a messenger bag type design, but not really suitable for more structural brief case projects. More detail pics on my instagram page @plingbootleatherwork
  2. plingboot

    Edge finishing Kudu

    Kudu is beautiful stuff. I went to Crack's to choose/pick up my hide as it's not like buying many other leathers - where quality is pretty similar across hides and you could just phone an order one. I gather it's a bit of a by-product of southern African life - aside from the massive number of bite/scratch/thorn marks all over the hide, most of them have a number of holes where the knife has gone through during skinning - so depending on the project it's important to actually look at the hide to make sure it'll be suitable.
  3. plingboot

    Edge finishing Kudu

    Just a quick report on this one. I used clear 'Edge Kote' on the kudu, let it dry for a day, then rubbed along the edges with bees wax before burnishing with a Dremel. The finish is super smooth and looks like it'll last a while. As an aside is clear Edge Kote just watered down PVA (smells like it) or is there more to it?
  4. plingboot

    Edge finishing Kudu

    Thanks for the replies. In this instance I will probably just use a clear edge paint. In an ideal world I’d prefer to skive and stitch as I think that would look superb, but for the size of the pieces I’m working on I need both a skiving machine and compound feed sewing machine to ensure the quality I want. But that’s a £2k investment which isn’t in the budget at the moment.
  5. plingboot

    Edge finishing Kudu

    I'm looking for suggestions for edge finishing (burnishing/slicking) kudu leather. I've got a project I'm about to start with it and have been experimenting with edge finishes, but can't seem to find anything which works. So far I've tried both hand and Dremel slicking and water, gum trag and bees wax and to be honest after each test it doesn't look much different than the fresh cut edge.
  6. plingboot

    Embossing press/rivet press

    Thanks for the replies. I bought a 1 tonne arbor press from eBay (£45). Hopefully this will do the job.
  7. plingboot

    Embossing press/rivet press

    I’ve had a brass stamp made to mark my work, but have quickly discovered that getting a good repeatable impression by hand (maul/hammer) isn’t easy across different leathers. For some of my leathers I think a press is going to be a much better way to do this, so I’m looking for suggestions for a good quality, but not necessarily top dollar press. my associated question is whether a rivet press could also do the job? Ie with a threaded insert to hold my stamp.
  8. plingboot

    Sharpening a new skiving knife

    @zuludog - thanks for the input.
  9. plingboot

    Sharpening a new skiving knife

    I've just bought a CS Osborne No 479 skiving knife and would like some advice on how to go about sharpening it. I don't yet have any stones or guides, but have the items listed in THIS video added to my amazon shopping list, just in case. Don't think the chisel honing guide is going to suitable though.
  10. plingboot

    Portable compound feed machines?

    Thanks for the replies. Looks like a portable might be off the list. I’m pretty new to this so the learning curve on everything is almost vertical. My ‘grand plan’ is to design, make and sell short runs of items in my spare time. I’m still getting to grips with which leather I need to be using (a question about that will be hitting the appropriate section soon) where in the UK to source it and what thread size etc. up to now I’ve bought off cuts of leather on eBay to experiment designs with. As mentioned in my original post, most of my designs will be no more than circa 6mm thick. IE circa 2mm leather outer, zip, lining fabric or all leather wallets of 2mm outer and 2 or 3 layers of thinner for the card holders. Some may have small details where that thickness is upto 10mm, but it might be that I resign my straps by skiving(?) the leather more at the end to make that part of component thinner. I think what I’m after is advice in the form of a shot list of (second hand) machine make/model numbers to look at as reference/starting point. I guess I’d like to spend a around £500-600, but willing to look at something a little more expensive if it’s features justify the price. Thanks
  11. First post here, so a newbie question. I’m looking for a portable machine to stitch small leatherwork - wallets, cosmetic bags, watch straps, purses, etc. Most designs aren’t too thick (circa 6mm) but there are places where I may need to stitch up to 10-12mm where a hand strap is sewn into the side of a cosmetic bag. If I had the room I’d go for something like a consew 206, but I don’t have the space for something fixed in its own table - I need to be able to put it away when not in use… like a regular sewing machine. I have half an eye on a sailrite LSZ-1 Premium, but as I’m in the UK there’s a real premium to pay with shipping and duty. Im also unsure whether the lack of a needle feed on the sailrite will be a problem in the long term. Does anyone know of an alternative portable machine or a way to repurpose an industrial machine like a 206 so it can be easily ‘put away’ when not in use? thanks…