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About SUP

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    Leatherwork; books; old lamps; old, handwritten recipe books and anything my family and I enjoy doing together.

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    A newbie
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    Anything I can make with leather, restoring old leather.
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    Online when looking for information on learning leatherworking

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  1. @fredk that's okay. This will be such a long term experiment, a few days delay will not make much of a difference. So take your time. it should not be a burden.
  2. About the leather, I am using 5oz leather, so about 2mm. I am using relatively good leather. but not the best. I have made the pieces of 3 inch by 3 inch size. That should be sufficient, I think. I have experienced the same thing that you have, with dye. I plan to apply the oil and wipe away any excess after a set amount of time, maybe 5 minutes. I will label each piece and note the extent of absorption as well; I will not be able to quantify the extent of absorption though, except in the most general of terms. Let's see. We will surely have to modify some of the steps as we go on. I know bacon and pork are the same but a world of difference in the taste! I love bacon but not pork in any other form. And don't start on shops catering to one community over others. Why some think they are more important than others is beyond me and why others listen is an even bigger mystery. Hindus don't eat beef but we do not object to others eating it or it being sold in stores. We just don't buy it. Why can't other communities do the same? Leaving that topic aside, and back to leathers and oils. I will do the sets for mineral oil and neatsfoot oil today and then need to be away for a week or so, so incommunicado. Will continue, both in this thread and the experiment, when I return.
  3. @Sheilajeanne I have no idea how bacon fat is different from pork fat - it is the same thing! Probably the smoking of bacon gives the fat that smoky fragrance as well. Neatsfoot oil smells unpleasant to me, but I like the use of it, so I use gloves when using it. If not, I feel the smell remains for hours, no matter how much I wash my hands. That is so true about processing fats. Everything is made, for the most, part, as it has been made for centuries, except for the packing and the exorbitant prices! I also plan to add mink oil to my list.
  4. @fredk, no we don't need to mirror the experiments but they need to be similar and, like you said, probably will be. Animal fats like tallow, bear grease etc. I leave to others. At the most, I can do lanolin, which I do use in my leather conditioner anyway. @Sheilajeanne, won't bacon fat smell of bacon? So the leather will too. And an invitation to mice and rats?
  5. @fredk Yes of course. A proper experiment. I don't mind your mentioning all the steps to take. It has been a while since I even stepped into a lab. Good to be reminded. I will measure and maintain proper documentation. Just a tad busy right now so will probably get everything set by Sunday. I have been investigating what is used to oil-tan leather - it is not really tanning as much as a treatment of chrome-tanned leather, where the leather is immersed in oils/fats. What I have discovered is that in earlier times they used to use fish oils but now use synthetic oils and complexes. I plan to call a leather store here to see if they can direct me to someone who can give me more information. Since oil-tanned leather is already well exposed to and impregnated with oils and waxes, our results will be skewed unless we know what is used, at least in the leather I use. So I will start with veg-tanned leather and do the oil-tanned leather if I get all the relevant information. @chuck123wapati welcome to the experiment. Tallow is something to which I do not have access, so that is a welcome addition, The surface on which the leather is kept will be a part of the documentation. I think, @fredk, once we have everything set, we could share procedures, so we all follow the same methods.
  6. @fredk you hit the nail on the head. Incidentally, oxidation of oils produces peroxides as well as alcohols, aldehydes and ketones, among other things. Not what we expect to put on our leathers. Oils oxidize on contact with the oxygen in the air - they smell unpleasant, or not, based on the exact type of chemical produced. But just because there is no smell, it does not mean there is no oxidation happening; it just means that the products are of a type that do not have a strong smell; longer chain versus short chain fatty acids but that is going too technical.. It suggests that oils should be stored in air tight containers to prolong their lives. And maybe used lightly on leathers, except dry leathers which needs lubrication. Maybe some sort of anti-oxidant could be used as well. Need to look that up.
  7. @fredk, good to hear about the leather in your car and other older cars. . It appears more and more likely that it is not the type of oil, per se, that damages leather. Engine oil, being non-organic, should last forever, like mineral oil. Organic oils are fine as long as they are not exposed to air over long periods. Even the olive oils that I hear were fine over 1000s of years, were in airtight containers. So air is the villain, it appears, specifically Oxygen. Wonder what the products of oxidative damage of oils are? Do they damage leathers? Lots of more research needed. @chuck123wapati yes it is. I wish more people would join in, with the oils and leathers they have and in their locale.
  8. @Northmount, thank you. I will follow those directions on saving articles. I do hope we get more of them! @fredk About the hand-cream, I am increasingly starting to suspect that most oils do, not harm leather, per se, 'if judiciously used' - those are the operative words.. But then, there is oil tanned leather and how the oils in those leathers are affected by added oils. I am looking into that, a bit pressed for time though.
  9. @fredk my area is rather warmer than yours. I'm in Georgia. I think you have a good plan. I should be able to do more or less the same. it's getting cooler here now. I plan to keep one set in the boot of my car; the 2nd in the garage which is always either very warm or very cold and dark, and the third set will be outside, exposed to the elements. My only concern is mold. I can take care of it if it appears but that will affect the outcome. I wonder if we even need to include thread. We know natural fibres break down naturally over time, regardless of treatment. @chuck123wapati there are, of course, plenty of variables that can affect the leathers. and we cannot include everything. But this is an effort to determine if the oils are, by themselves good, bad or neutral on the leathers. This very simple experiment will at least give an idea of whether the oils directly affect the leathers in any way.
  10. I did not know we had a greater range. Hmm. I usually stick to veg tanned or oil-tanned. Both actually feel like leather. Oil-tanned is chrome tanned as well, with extensive oil or wax treatment and the results are pretty nice. Other chrome tanned, some do too but others are so plasticky, might as well use faux leather. I plan to only use leather which feels like leather. I doubt that any leather that is so coated with synthetic material that it feels plasticky needs much conditioning. Incidentally, I have some fractionated coconut oil - it is supposed to have less of an aroma than cold pressed. Could have fooled me! I applied a drop on my the back of my hand and it is already smelling strongly. Got it from Costco too. I wonder if the smell disappears after a while.
  11. @Sheilajeanne I agree! About the description specially - idiots! And I like neatsfoot oil and use it, never mind what a lot of people say, I notice they are either company sites trying to push their own products or the know-it-alls - It takes all kinds. I'm always glad to hear good reports about it. It has been around and found useful for so long, how can it suddenly become 'not good'? Often, tried and tested are the best or at least as good. Wish it was a little less smelly though. I spoke to @Northmount about creating a repository and he suggests saving the files that people provide as pdf files. I am not sure how to do that here. Could anyone guide me on that or do it?
  12. @fredk Yes that will be a proper way of doing this. I will be using coconut oil, food grade mineral oil, probably sesame seed oil and whatever else I have inside. I will need to check. I have veg tanned scraps, oil-tanned scraps and other chrome tanned scraps. I am trying to get some information on what oils and waxes are used to finish oil-tanned leather. The oils and waxes used in finishing oil-tanned leathers, might affect the results of additional oils. Do you know anything about it?
  13. @chuck123wapati Haha. Can't comment on that. My dog chews her collars or tries to get them off to chew them, pulling until she somehow slips them off, then chews them. So no leather collars for her now. For some reason, she does not chew any of my leathers lying around, only her own collars. She knows it is hers, 'to do with as she wishes'. Smart!
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