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About caressofsteel

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  • Location
    Raleigh NC

LW Info

  • Leatherwork Specialty
  • Interested in learning about
    Holster Business

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  1. I use LibreCAD for my templates. Although I don't use it; it has a built in dimensioning tool. It is free and open source. Online documentation seems to be pretty good, although I only use it for 2D templates.
  2. The term handmade is mere marketing in niches where the term still implies quality. I recently saw one YouTuber cutting leather with a scalpel. They said that all products were cut by hand and burnished by hand; that is why they were so expensive and high quality. Meanwhile, there was a motorized burnisher and clicker dies in the background. So this was pure marketing on his part. The thing is his stuff looked top quality even being die cut and machine burnished. But you have to tell the customer a story and that customer needs to believe they are getting something special.
  3. Hello bigsig11010, You do not say what type of leather you are using, but assuming vegetable tan leather, here is what I do: I will sand the edges of the leather using a Dremel, 320 grit drum sander to get the edges even. Then I mark the stitch lines at 3mm for linings or 4mm for thicker leather using a wing compass. I like to mark the stitch lines at this point, before the edges are beveled, because there is less chance of the tool slipping off the edge. After the stitch lines are marked, then I will bevel the edges. Before the final burnishing, I go over the edges with a 600 grit drum sander. I don't skive the edges because I mainly make holsters, and I want them full strength at the edge. Hope this helps and good luck. Let us know how it turns out.
  4. Not quite what you asked, but I have hidden snaps between two layers of leather using the flat stud instead of the round cap. Usually have to trim the post 1/8 of an inch or so.
  5. Picture did not upload. Hopefully it works this time.
  6. A buddy requested a pocket holster for his Glock 43. This is 2 layers of 4oz leather. I made this one slightly differently. I have been having trouble getting the dye even, so for this one I dyed the outer layer of leather immediately after I cut it. It seemed to dye much more evenly when flat (vs sewing, boning, then dyeing). This did make detail boning the holster more difficult. The holster was not molded inside the trigger guard, to give it a looser fit, but it ended up having a very tight fit anyway. Not a big deal, as loosening a holster is easier than trying to make it tighter. Lining is sewn using #138 thread at 3mm, almost 9 SPI and the body of the holster is #277 at 4mm; lots of practice hand stitching.
  7. No one mentioned this yet but I happen to like the look of a holster with a natural color lining. I use two layers of 4-5oz leather. I think it just looks classier.
  8. I am interested in the Glocks listed and the Sig P365.
  9. To get stitch lines for revolvers, I use a length of 8-9oz leather about a quarter inch wide. I start at the top of the cylinder and wrap the leather around the gun, coming together at the triggerguard. I measure the length, then add 1/4 inch (two thickness' of the leather). I measure again at the middle of the cylinder, the bottom of the cylinder, then the barrel. If the gun has a longer or tapered barrel, you may need more measurements along it. Lets say I measure 5 inches around the top of the cylinder and triggerguard. I would add 1/4 inch, then divide by two, to get the distance from the centerline, 2 5/8 inches. I center the gun on a manila folder and trace the outline. At the top of the cylinder I measure out 2 5/8 inches and make a mark. This is the start of the stitch line. Then I do the same for the middle cylinder, bottom cylinder, frame, top of barrel and muzzle. I draw a smooth curve between these points. I find with a revolver, because the width changes at almost every point, it is difficult to get a stitch line that exactly follows the contour of the gun. (Much easier with semi-autos).
  10. Looks great. I have been wanting to make a leather briefcase / laptop bag similar to this. What weight and type of leather did you use?
  11. Regular dye = rub off. Especially with black. 99% of my problems with rub off disappeared after switching to pro dye. Pro dye used to cost twice as much as the regular dye; but now it's only about 15% more, which is well worth it in my opinion.
  12. 277 bonded nylon thread or 0.8mm Tiger thread. I like the Tiger thread more and more because it lays flat and the braid seems to be stronger than 277 nylon.
  13. I do not own one but read a little about them since old time holster makers swear by the old lock stitch machines. This is a hook and awl machine. As far as I can tell, this uses an awl moving downward to pierce the leather and advance it. Then a hook comes up and grabs the thread, pulling it down to form the loop. The advantage is supposed to be that the awl makes a smaller hole relative to a needle, and there is no presser foot to scuff the leather. People who use these machines say these advantages are functional; IE a stronger stitch and stronger leather versus a walking foot machine. The other side will contend that the final stitch is the same and the differences are cosmetic. Both sides agree that these machines are loud and finicky. Parts, if available, are expensive. If not available, need to be custom made. I know of one holster maker who almost went out of business waiting for his hook and awl machine to be fixed, then finally broke down and bought a walking foot machine to complete his orders. I am sure several people here can give you more details or even some first hand experience with these machines.
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