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JC2019

Anyone here a seller of leather? How does it work? Any places to buy reject skins/hides?

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Note: I will mostly be focusing on alligator but I think it would apply to other skins too. 

I know this is a long shot. But for fabrics, there is a term called "Jobbers" that will take excess fabrics for jobs that someone might not need. You likely won't be able to purchase in the exact same style again  but it's a good way to buy at a cheaper discount for one off projects.

I am seeing a few sellers on ebay and etsy that must be getting similar products for leather (alligator, etc). From reading the pan american leather article on alligator,  if you get huge, you start buying in large quantities and get discounts. For the time being you buy from distributors. But my guess is there is a third source?

My first thought was to call up a few places in Florida. The skins I am seeing will typically not be grade A (or have chunks taken out of them) but be more in the $100-150 range for a ~25cm wide skin.

The prices I see from distributors for similar skins (but probably closer if not grade A/One) are in the 230-$350 range (which I've paid just to see what they are like and the quality, I am a not ready for these yet). I hardly see anything go below this price from the more established sellers. I understand everyone has to make money.

For now I am buying through Springfield leather since they have good prices all around (except no alligator) but I am just trying to do a bit more research, maybe there is something I've missed. If I'm supposed to be paying $230+ for 25cm alligator skins then that's fine, just wanted to know if this is expected. 

 

Mostly out of curiosity. At what point does  a tannery start working with you and give you good discount? 10 skins? 100? 1000?   more?

I realize that many will buy from over-seas, so maybe that's part of the answer, and hopefully they aren't cutting corners (personally, I'd rather stay local to the USA if possible).

I've seen huge disparity in prices from: $10 to $45+ with the same exotic skin of similar size / quality (i.e lizard,  to ostrich leg, etc). This leads me to believe there is room to shop around. Maybe I am too new, I realize sometimes it's quality that affects, price, the person you are dealing with, etc.

 

*** I suppose my ultimate question is are there any seller anyone could refer me to that is good but sells maybe lower grade skins? (I have the list of exotic dealers here and I've shopped from them too and will continue to do so for certain projects, especially as I get better. They are also very good about advising me with my projects and answering all my questions).

* ** My last other option is to buy beat up leather goods and try to extract exotic leather from that (someone here was helpful in pointing this out) so if you know a good source for those too.. I'm also interested... I'll try my local thrift stores. I'm not sure how viable this will be but I'm okay with being creative and finding a way to work while I'm just getting started..

 

Thank you, and sorry if it this sounds a little whiny

 

 

 

Edited by JC2019

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The main problem with exotics is they are a smaller harvest item. You will rarely find them cheap. Different exotics pop here every now and then. And they are usually gone by the time I see the post.

I have not seen a good source for alligator myself in the manner for which you are searching.

However, @nstarleather is one of these "jobbers" you speak of. But, I haven't ever seen him display any exotics. His stuff is mostly high end shoe and bag leathers. It is beautiful high quality stuff that he passes on to us.

Good luck in your search.

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On 5/5/2019 at 6:51 AM, bikermutt07 said:

However, @nstarleather is one of these "jobbers" you speak of. But, I haven't ever seen him display any exotics. His stuff is mostly high end shoe and bag leathers. It is beautiful high quality stuff that he passes on to us.

 

Yeah that's me...kinda, the quantity I have to buy at once varies but it's usually a "buy the lot" type of proposition so easily talking $5K-$6 and up for a pallet of leather (it's a deal but it can also be a bit of a pig in a poke if I don't know what I'm getting).  I've been offered some ostrich and Kangaroo before but not any gator. 

The thing about buying overruns is that once one buyer starts buying, they're going to take everything that comes through if the quantity is low enough; for example I buy the scrap from a major high end shoe maker by the pound it's an amazing deal, so any time they have pallets of scrap to send, I'll take it whether I need it or not because if they sell to somebody else, then that's it for me (because the other guy will want "first dibs").  I would imagine that this is what happens with gator, if they are selling all the "excess", it's probably to just one or two people, and the quantity is such that they can absorb all of it.  

Of course that only works with low volume stuff...I recently had to tell my "upholstery scrap" people that I needed to pause on buying anymore for at least a year because it's piling up beyond what I can use at this point.

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@JC2019 We just visited a Gator outlet for us...so keep in touch and we will have some crust Gator.

There is a video I will post here that is going over something different, but you can see the hides.

 

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7 hours ago, nstarleather said:

Yeah that's me...kinda, the quantity I have to buy at once varies but it's usually a "buy the lot" type of proposition so easily talking $5K-$6 and up for a pallet of leather (it's a deal but it can also be a bit of a pig in a poke if I don't know what I'm getting).  I've been offered some ostrich and Kangaroo before but not any gator. 

The thing about buying overruns is that once one buyer starts buying, they're going to take everything that comes through if the quantity is low enough; for example I buy the scrap from a major high end shoe maker by the pound it's an amazing deal, so any time they have pallets of scrap to send, I'll take it whether I need it or not because if they sell to somebody else, then that's it for me (because the other guy will want "first dibs").  I would imagine that this is what happens with gator, if they are selling all the "excess", it's probably to just one or two people, and the quantity is such that they can absorb all of it.  

Of course that only works with low volume stuff...I recently had to tell my "upholstery scrap" people that I needed to pause on buying anymore for at least a year because it's piling up beyond what I can use at this point.

Very insightful. Thaks for that info. Are you selling anything now?

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11 hours ago, TonySFLDLTHR said:

@JC2019 We just visited a Gator outlet for us...so keep in touch and we will have some crust Gator.

There is a video I will post here that is going over something different, but you can see the hides.

 

Nice, I had lost that video, was just trying to find it. I just ordered some ostrich crust from you guys to try out a similar concept (another video of yours). Ping me when you have the new crust skins, would love to check them out. I don't see the orion calf LTD product listed yet? Any idea on approximate date it will be out and the video?  Thanks

Edited by JC2019

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On 5/6/2019 at 8:46 PM, JC2019 said:

Nice, I had lost that video, was just trying to find it. I just ordered some ostrich crust from you guys to try out a similar concept (another video of yours). Ping me when you have the new crust skins, would love to check them out. I don't see the orion calf LTD product listed yet? Any idea on approximate date it will be out and the video?  Thanks

We will be getting out soon. It is supposed to arrive today here.

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Awesome @TonySFLDLTHR

Do you know if the product will make the crust more supple? I know crust tends to be more stiff. I believe it can get tumbled to become more sipple even as a crust but I am trying to think of how I will work with it. Thanks!

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45 minutes ago, TonySFLDLTHR said:

@JC2019 We have gator crust in stock now. Some are the a little stiff, but we also have some that are tumbled and very supple.

And what are we talking when someone says crust?

I've been doing leather work for about 5 years now off and on (and reading consistently) , but I am just now starting to here this term "crust" thrown about. 

I'll admit to not knowing everything, but could I have overlooked this term that much in the last 5 years?

So, I'm wondering if this isn't the new "buzz word" in leather?

If I'm mistaken, by all means educate me.

Thanks

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@bikermutt07 If you take a look at the video above, you will see the white looking leather...that is crust.

Crust is leather that has been tanned, but not finished. That way you can buy it and finish part of it how you want and another part how you want. Hopefully adding more value to it for you.

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Btw..if buying leather from France..be very careful buying what you think would be "crust".."crust" translates as "croûte"..if you are translating "word for word"..

But..

"Croûte de cuir"...means a "split"..and not the outer part left after splitting with the "good side".. it means the kind of splits that you see in low grade leather belts and that gets used for stiffening..

The good part left after a split..That is the "Fleur de cuir" ..and because it is usually used to describe the "top layer" of skins that have been split either multiple times , or split thin, it can be fragile ..Especially in Lambskin, Sheepskin and Goatskins..

Cow skins and Buffalo etc ..not so much..it can also be used to describe fairly thick good ( usable for carving ) skins / hides..

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On 6/3/2019 at 11:19 AM, TonySFLDLTHR said:

@JC2019 We have gator crust in stock now. Some are the a little stiff, but we also have some that are tumbled and very supple.

Is this up on your site yet?  If so, can you share a link?  I'm not seeing it.

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