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About Me

Found 3 results

  1. What's it been? A few weeks, a month, or even longer since I posted my last cane with a leather handle? Anyway, at that time YinTx mentioned commissioning one for his dad and after talking back and forth we decided I would do the wood and he would do the leather. So the collaboration began. Things have been moving slowly along since then. YinTx sent me a goody bag full of veg tan of different weights and brands along with a couple of tooled pieces to practice with and we decided on a shank and a handle style for the cane. This wasn't all the choices but the picture does show the one he chose. The left hand stick is a nice rustic black walnut sucker with a very small and even taper at the top and some nice knots in the bottom for a bit of character. We're still working on the final wood choices for the handle but it will be a Fritz style similar in shape to this one. Right now the hold up is on my end. I have three handles I'm currently finishing but with the weather getting colder it's taking forever to build up a good shine. YinTx can't do a whole lot on his end until that part is done so he knows how big his tooling area is. We're almost literally sitting around watching paint dry. While I've been waiting on that I've started practicing wet forming with the pieces of veg tan YinTx sent me, mostly trying to figure out what works for this application and what doesn't. At this point it's mostly what doesn't work. Here's my first completed wet formed handle. The cane is a one piece cane made from a dead oak branch. I decided this was a good practice piece because of the nearly round handle. Honestly I think it could have been done without wet forming. The leather is Tandy 9 oz. veg tan. I chose the thicker leather because the branch making the grip was a little small so it needed something thick. I skived the front and back edges down to get rid of the pig in a blanket effect and stitched the leather on wet with 1.4 mm Tiger thread. After I thought I had things trimmed to fit I tried pressing a decorative line about 1/8" from the front and back edges and next to the stitch line. The more I look at my stitching the less I like it. I have to get over the idea of using the stitching chisel I have as anything more than a spacing device for my stitch holes. A round awl is much better for this kind of work. Stitching the leather while wet was a mistake too. It stretched the already too-big holes and even tore one a bit. I also had to re-work the stitches closest to the shank and messed that up. Lesson learned. That pretty much brings things up to date for now. More later.
  2. I just finished this prototype of a padded handle. The padding is 1/4" closed cell cross linked polyethylene that was recommended by the supplier. I like it. The leather is brown kidskin from Springfield. The woods used are white oak and holly on the collar and end caps with a maple core on the handle and an alder shank. Overall I'm pretty happy for a first attempt. The padding made it easier to get a decent fit on the leather. There are a few small errors. The seams on the foam telegraphed through the leather a bit. More care was needed fitting the foam (fixed on the current one I'm making). I managed to put a small scratch in the leather at the top front of the handle. I'm working on changing the order of work to eliminate that possibility in the future. The handle ended up about 1/4" taller and wider than I intended. It doesn't sound like a lot but the handle is huge. I have large hands (short but wide) and this handle is big for me. My seams are still a bit wobbly but they are slowly improving. Critiques and advice are always appreciated.
  3. I decided to post this one here because I already know it won't stand up to any kind of critique. Weathered and wormy white oak this time with a baseball stitch. The black marks on the leather are just rain. It's still far from perfect but I think my stitches are getting a little better. I also think I prefer the baseball stitch to the X stitch that I've been using. Next time I buy leather I'll get some veg tanned. This leather is nice and stretchy which is great for my purposes but the edges don't finish well-very possibly it's user error too. Rodney
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