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About TomE

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  1. Good to know about the 2 types of HO bridle leather. I visit the SLC store to select sides so I will find out more on my next trip. In June a SLC staffer mentioned that HO orders were backlogged because one of the tannery's splitting machines was broken for several months. HO is the home town tannery for me - I'm 40 mi west of St Louis.
  2. I have purchased 3 sides of HO bridle leather from SLC this year. All have a smooth, dyed finish on the flesh side. SLC had a HO bridle side in Havana (dark red-brown), a color I hadn't seen before and really like. I like working with the HO bridle leather but notice that the cut edges tend to require more burnishing effort than their regular veg tanned leather. Sanding tends to raise the fibers of bridle leather in my experience. I did compare HO to Chahin bridle leather while visiting the SLC store, and thought the HO side had more substance/tighter fiber structure than Chahin. I've had another tack maker tell me he prefers Chahin over HO bridle leather.
  3. I've learned a lot about construction methods and dimensions by repairing tack. I repair friends' tack at no cost with the understanding that I'm in the learning process. Al Stohlman's books on hand sewing leather and constructing cases have a lot of practical tips. Also, his book on using and maintaining (sharpening) leathercraft tools is helpful. JH Leather's videos on making padded dog collars, and raised/swelled leather collars helped me refine my work for padded halters and swelled nose bands. Bruce Johnson Leathercraft has guides on using a rein rounder (to make round throat lashes) and using a draw gauge to cut straps. I found quality hardware for tack at Batz Corp in AR. I wet mold the returns on the straps (around the hardware) and use quick clamps with leather pads to hold the shape while they dry before gluing and sewing. I usually machine burnish the edges after molding the straps and before assembling them on the hardware then touch up the edges once the project is sewn together. If you're using a sewing machine there are some tips for sewing up close to the hardware to make a tight connection that causes less wear. From there, it's practice and a willingness to try again if you're not happy with the first attempt.
  4. TomE

    Padded Halters

    Sorry for the delay. I wrote a reply but it didn't post. The padding is 1/8" neoprene and the liner is cowhide tanned to resemble deerskin.
  5. TomE

    Padded Halters

    Of course, Donkey Boy is a well known sire - a rock star! How fortunate that your son can learn horsemanship from top notch professionals.
  6. TomE

    Padded Halters

    Thank you! Thanks! We breed sport horses for several registeries in the USA (Dutch Warmblood, Westfalen, Hanoverian). http://www.maefieldfarm.com I began making halters as a way of saying thank you to our clients but it's becoming a bad habit. Our mares are typically presented in a halter with foal at their side. The foal halters and slips tend to be a primitive affair made of oil tanned leather with rough edges and rivet fasteners. I think I can do better based on some designs in Steinke's book "Bridlework.". The required halter size varies, depending on when the foal was born, but I think 2 or 3 different sizes would cover the range.
  7. TomE

    Padded Halters

    Made a padded halter for a sales horse from Hermann Oak Havana bridle leather. Liked it well enough that I made the same design with 3/4" straps for a special pony. Now it's got me thinking that matching halters for broodmares and foals could be "a thing" at foal inspections sponsored by breed registries.
  8. Will put in a plug for Batz Corp as a reliable provider of quality brass and stainless hardware for tack. I have more luck shopping from their PDF catalog then searching the website with a part number for price/min. qty. https://www.batzusa.com/
  9. I'm late to the party, but Batz Corp in Prattsville AR has very nice, heavy duty brass and stainless steel hardware that I use for tack... and dog collars. You might find it easier to download their catalog then search the website using the part number for price and minimum quantity. They have not disappointed me.
  10. The baseball stitch is covered in Stohlman's The Art of Hand Sewing Leather.
  11. Nice work. Congratulations! Seems that holster style worked out OK for her.
  12. Thanks for the hand sewing tips. I’m thinking about making a bridle with some padded straps.
  13. Nice work! I am envious of your stitching. How do you prepare the padded liner for sewing? Is it glued in place?
  14. I made a few round pieces using the hidden stitch as described in Al Stohlman's "The Art of Making Leather Cases." Thought that worked well. He describes using a leather strap held in a vise instead of a metal rounder. For now, I've switched to machine sewing the round and essentially mushrooming the corners using the rein rounder to mostly cover the stitches. I'm using a 1.25 in wide strap of 7 oz leather wrapped around a 9 oz filler. I got started using a metal rounder with this tutorial https://brucejohnsonleather.com/index.php/download_file/1038/202/. Good luck finding the halter. We have ponies (Caspian horses) that wear breakaway halters with grazing muzzles. Some disappear until discovered the following spring when I am spreading manure.
  15. Thanks, Mulesaw. Making the round throat strap took some practice but I am getting faster/better at it. There aren't many rein rounders for sale and they are priced accordingly. I am grateful that she who must be obeyed allowed me to buy one from Bruce Johnson Leatherwork.
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