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Hi, I have a relatively simple leatherworking job that I'm looking to offer to someone either in/near Norfolk, Virginia, or Portland, Oregon (I live in VA, but the majority of my business is located in OR). I have a straightforward wallet design that I need someone to construct. I'm considering two methods of manufacture. 1) Having the leather laser-cut (including stitch holes) and then hand sewn. 2) Having the wallets die-cut and sewn by machine. Either way, the requirements will be relatively basic. If you live in or near Virginia or Oregon, and have an interest in this work, please let me know by personal message. Further, if you have contact information for someone or some business that may be interested in this work, please forward it to me. FYI, this job probably will not begin for the next few months, but I'm trying to get things in order now. Also, I'm currently at sea with the US Navy, so my response time may be delayed. Thanks!
I got tired of using various cutting devices and straight edges to make long straight cuts. Too often the cutter drifted away from the straight edge or leaned to the side giving me an edge that was not square. When the cutting device touched a metal straight edge it would dull it. This was my solution. I purchased a Logan mat cutting ruler and straight cutter. I tried using the cutter and ruler the way it came but my results were mixed. The cutter travels in a groove in the ruler. I did not like the fit but the idea was sound. I removed the blade holding part of the cutter and screwed it to a small block of UHMW plastic. UHMW plastic is similar to cutting board plastic just denser. I cut my own groove in the block but produced a lip that provided a very snug fit in the ruler. UHMW is very low friction material so even though it is a tight fit it slides easily with no side play. The block's edges were rounded over and the bottom sanded smooth. The block travels in the ruler's groove,presses down on the leather and maintains the razor cutting edge perpendicular to the face of the leather. Because the block is so smooth it does not damage the surface of the leather at all. I mounted the ruler to a 2' x 4' piece of poly board I had. I attached flathead screws from the bottom of the surface to line up with the holes in the ruler. The nuts holding the screws fit under the recess of the ruler allowing it to lay flat. The ruler is removable. It is lifted up to position the piece and then dropped over the bolts. This eliminates any side to side movement of the ruler. I also cut a groove in the cutting board surface to provide clearance for the razor cutter. The cutter never contacts the cutting surface which really cuts down on blade drag and increases the life of the cutter. It works better then I had hoped for. The bottom of the ruler has rubber strips which help keep the leather from slipping. The blade holder has two depth setting which allow the blade to project 5/16" (20/64") deep. I have cut 12 oz. bridle with little effort. When I use it I press down on the ruler which holds the leather in place and slide the block with moderate downward pressure. It works so well I can even cut lace with it (1/4' wide see photos). Since both edges of the ruler are parallel I use a large square on the opposite edge when I want to make right angle corner cuts. Jim
Ed in Tx posted a topic in Purses, Wallets, Belts and Miscellaneous Pocket ItemsHere is a super easy pocket wallet that I made for a friends Dad for his 70th birthday. This particular one is made from shark hide and lined with a 2/3 oz. veg-tan. The dimensions of the pocket for cards is 3" wide by 7 1/2" long, the strap part is 1 1/2" wide by 10 1/2" long. The strap is attached on the top of the backside of the pocket before folding the pocket over and sewing it. I tried a couple of different places to attach the strap but decided the top back side was the most sensible from an ease of use stand point. I used a ligne 20 snap to close the strap but you could use Velcro or a larger snap if you wanted. I experimented with a few different type of leather and found that a more pliable leather worked best. Initially I thought I could use a 4/5 oz. veg-tan tooling leather but it was too rigid and limited the number of cards I could put in the pocket. This was a super easy wallet to make and I have sold several of them in shark, elephant, hippo and even did a couple in gator belly.
tbmow posted a topic in Purses, Wallets, Belts and Miscellaneous Pocket ItemsThe attached PDF is a wallet pattern that is easy starter project that will allow a user to practice several aspects of the craft. The wallet has four inner card pockets and one outer bill pocket. There are a total of four pieces of leather to cut out. The pattern is full-sized. The line with two arrows next to the "1" on each page should be 1 inch tall when printing. Measure this with a ruler after printing to verify that it printed to the correct size. Here are the steps: Print out the design, and cut out the pieces to use as a template. Cut the main body (nice easy straight cuts so that you will get a feel for cutting the leather). Cut the two card pockets (smaller sized so if you make a mistake there is less wasted leather). Place the inner pockets inside the main body and fold the main body over the card pockets. Wrap the outer template around the main body and verify that it is long enough to reach around and cover the edges. This is because this piece wraps around the main body, and the folded main body and card pockets are now four layers thick, the length of the outer pocket may need adjusting. Adjust the length if needed and cut the outer pocket — if you need to adjust the length for the outer pocket, cut the pocket square then center the pattern lengthwise to cut out the non-straight edge. If in doubt, make the outer pocket a bit longer and trim it later. There is less waste in making a small trim than there is in making a whole other pocket (a bit of experience talking here!). If desired, dye the edges now (if using already colored leather), or the whole thing (if using veg-tan). Glue the card pockets to the flesh side of the main body. After the glue has dried, sew the center stitch line (above the word "card"). The stitch line is shown as a dotted line on the main body. Glue the outer pocket to the main body. This is glued onto the opposite side of the pockets. Groove stitching channels if the leather is thick enough. Sew the outer and card pockets. Note that the stitching does not go all the way around the wallet, but it resembles two "U" shapes with the open ends facing each other. You do not want to stitch across the bend. (Search the forums for more info on this.) If your outer edges are not even, trim them and do your preferred edging treatment. Finish as desired or needed. Take a picture and reply to this post and show us your work. I made two of these from a $5 piece of gambler's choice leather from Springfield (would have been three except for the mistake about the outer pocket length). Not counting glue drying time (using Weldbond PVA), the first one took about 45 minutes and the second about 30 minutes to complete. Sewing was done using an awl and saddle stitching. These were my first projects in leather. Some variations you can try are: Changing the style of the cutouts on the pockets (i.e. to straight lines). Lining the pockets. Adding another layer of inner pockets (do not forget to adjust the outer pocket length). Mixing leather colors/types/etc. Changing stitch lengths, thread colors, etc. Please post your work so that I can see how others modify the design. I am studying how people learn and adapt information, and am curious how people do this as a hobby. Wallet A.pdf t