TwistedM

Rawhide lace

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When making the lace for a rawhide riata I'm going to be going to about 1/4" in width  my big question about it is what is the thickness I should be going down to when splitting? 

 

Thanks in advance 

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most of my rawhide lace for a riata is 5/16 or 3/8 inch wide. a lot depends on whether you bought the rawhide or if you pulled it off the cow and did it yourself. If I've pulled and prepped the hide myself I like to split my thickness no thinner than 2mm thick, I have my splitter set at 2.5mm for the last riata I did. which is roughly between 4-6 oz on the standard leather chart. most of the time it is the braiders preference and what he's comfortable using.

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":He who laughs last wins" . Squirrelly66 it's been my experience that he who laughs last gets hit first:) 

You folks ever made rawhide from horse hide? Someone told me once that the hide from a yearling colt made the best rawhide you could get but I haven't had a chance to test it yet. JayInOz

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South Americans use horsehide for some of their best work and skin the yearling down the backbone, leaving the belly in one piece and cut a big circle centered on the belly for string making and use the legs, back and butt for cores. Not gonna find much of this in US, Learned this from Peruvian sheepherders in Wyoming Mountains. At first, camptender thought lions or bears were getting wagon mares colts until the new bosals, reins, etc started showing up! 

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I've used Horse leather (Horween) lace for making whips and other lacing projects. I like it quite a bit. I have not had the experience of using horse rawhide yet. I use a lot of goat and deer rawhide for a lot of my smaller projects.

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Interesting story oltoot. A local feller here kills quite a few horses for dog meat- greyhound industry- and he drops the tails here for me to make stuff out of- mostly fly whisks with fancy turned handles. He's always promising to drop me off a couple of hides but hasn't gotten around to it yet- I'm a patient old fart- I can wait:)  

Here in Australia there are no native animals with hard hooves. The country is shallow and easily damaged. So the environmentalists are screaming for the wild horses in the snow country in the Southern Highlands to be culled. There are presently around seven thousand of them and they want the number reduced to around seven hundred. That's a lot of meat and hides for someone in the know. JayInOz

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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4 hours ago, JayInOz said:

Here in Australia

When I asked at a leather supplier here in Western Australia, I was told there was no way they would deal with horse hide leather because of the anger and problems caused by horse-lovers. "Been there, done that" was their approximate summation.

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Hearing you Brian. People seem to think that some animals have more right to life than others. I used to make an important chunk of my meagre income shooting foxes and selling the skins every winter. The anti fur mob completely destroyed the industry. An estimated 7.2 million foxes here and practically no market, so now we shoot them and leave them lay. The numbers go up and the sarcoptic mange kills a heap then repeat. I lose lambs to foxes every year. We shouldn't kill deer either because they have lovely brown eyes:)

The feller I get the horse tails from doesn't really want to give me hides simply because it would slow him down to skin them carefully. He shoots the horses in the paddock and has the chainsaw warmed up by the time they stop kicking. It's pretty brutal. I just like rawhide because it's so simple and quick to make- builders lime and water to dehair then vinegar and water to neutralize and you're good to go.  I'm sure there are other ways but that's how I do it:) JayInOz

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On ‎6‎/‎7‎/‎2019 at 6:15 PM, JayInOz said:

The feller I get the horse tails from doesn't really want to give me hides simply because it would slow him down to skin them carefully.

Any chance you can accompany him on a shoot and take the time yourself to remove the hide carefully? 'Means to an end' sort of thing.

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I get fresh cow hides from a couple guys that butcher meat for people, also from the occasional rancher around here that has one dead in the field. If I'm gonna stretch a whole hide I slip the hair like JayInOz , then put on my stretcher and stretch it good and let it dry, Hides I do this way I use for strings for fancy projects, If I'm doing a reata I take the fresh hide and cut it in one continuous strand approximately 1" wide till it's all used up, then I stretch it on the fence, after it is dry I go out and scrape the hair and any excess tissue off with a good knife.

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Brian the best way would be to skin it using a tree, a chain and my truck. I'll talk to him about it next time I see him- he buys quite a few Wessex Saddleback piglets from me.

Squirrelly I see a lot of pictures of fellers stretching hides using ropes on a frame. Total pain in the bum. If you want a quick and dirty method that takes about a tenth the time, peg the hide out with hardwood pegs flat on dry ground. When you're happy with how it looks, go around the outside and slip the hide an inch or so up each peg so there's air flow underneath. Works a treat. The hide will usually dry hard around the pegs, but you can just trim off the entire outer edge, pegs and all, and job done. JayInOz

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I use steel tarp clamps about every 5 inches and stretch it out tight as a drum because I have been known leave the hair on and scrape it after stretching, I have some customer's who will not buy rawhide that has had the hair slipped with lime even  after using the vinegar. Not my first rodeo, I've done this once or twice. I usually end up with anywhere from 30 to 50 deer hides every fall that get done up for rawhide lace. I get a few elk hides once in awhile. I got plenty of cow for now 22 hides in the shed. Just brain tanned 10 hide for making chaps , chinks and other assorted stuff. I seem to get by. The clamps do well cause I got tired of poking holes and running string many, many moons ago. Now I just run the rope thru the eye on the clamp.

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I know a feller who has a drum full of clamps that came from a tannery where a mate of his used to work. He has hundreds of them- never used them once and won't sell any. People like that annoy the beejeebus out of me:)  JayInOz

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My grandfather got these clamps from a tannery up around Chicago, Illinois back in the early 50's. The Horween tannery is still in business, I believe it's over 100 yrs old.  I have over 400 of the buggars and have used them all a time or two. Hell I've let me neighbor's borrow a few when they have a hide to stretch. They always return them in a timely fashion, too. which is nice. Yeah, I'm not thrilled about the people who hoard things just so nobody else has them. Those people get my briskets to burnin.

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:)   Thinking about that feller with the clamps. About forty years ago he and his brother in law moved up from the city and bought a farm that adjoined our place. They inherited a couple of head of mean, nasty, wild cattle and decided to shoot one for meat. Set up a block and tackle in a big old yellow box tree which stood at the top of a steep hill overlooking the creek. They put some hay directly under the hook, then went and sat in the truck about fifty yards away and waited with the rifle.  Eventually the cattle came in and the wrong one ate the hay, so they had to put more out and wait some more. The one they were after finally put it's head down to take a bite and one of these fellers took the shot. Just like in the movies they shot it between the eyes- so the bullet went about three inches below the brain. The beast staggered backwards about five yards and then cartwheeled down the steep side into the trees in the creek. Took them all day to get it out of there.

But the story doesn't end there. These fellers were living about fifty yards apart in temporary digs while they built their houses. In between their camps they built a double ended long drop toilet- door at each end and a partition in the middle- out of second hand timber siding. They decided that the timber wall of the outhouse was the perfect place to peg out the hide of this rangy beast they'd killed, and do "something" with the leather they were going to make. I rode over on my old Harley a few days later to see them about something and stopped in my tracks when I looked towards the outhouse. The hide had dried and shrunk and rolled up, taking a heap of boards with it. The whole lot ended up being burnt in the rubbish pile. Actually those blokes provided us with quite a bit of entertainment over the years. And as you can see- I'm a man of few words:)  JayInOz

Edited by JayInOz

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4 hours ago, JayInOz said:

:)   Thinking about that feller with the clamps. About forty years ago he and his brother in law moved up from the city and bought a farm that adjoined our place. They inherited a couple of head of mean, nasty, wild cattle and decided to shoot one for meat. Set up a block and tackle in a big old yellow box tree which stood at the top of a steep hill overlooking the creek. They put some hay directly under the hook, then went and sat in the truck about fifty yards away and waited with the rifle.  Eventually the cattle came in and the wrong one ate the hay, so they had to put more out and wait some more. The one they were after finally put it's head down to take a bite and one of these fellers took the shot. Just like in the movies they shot it between the eyes- so the bullet went about three inches below the brain. The beast staggered backwards about five yards and then cartwheeled down the steep side into the trees in the creek. Took them all day to get it out of there.

But the story doesn't end there. These fellers were living about fifty yards apart in temporary digs while they built their houses. In between their camps they built a double ended long drop toilet- door at each end and a partition in the middle- out of second hand timber siding. They decided that the timber wall of the outhouse was the perfect place to peg out the hide of this rangy beast they'd killed, and do "something" with the leather they were going to make. I rode over on my old Harley a few days later to see them about something and stopped in my tracks when I looked towards the outhouse. The hide had dried and shrunk and rolled up, taking a heap of boards with it. The whole lot ended up being burnt in the rubbish pile. Actually those blokes provided us with quite a bit of entertainment over the years. And as you can see- I'm a man of few words:)  JayInOz

I just about spat my coffee. Known a few of those sorts -- "farmers/tradies/manual workers do it, how hard could it be?" The sort of people who you hear circus music in the background whenever they're talking.

On 6/7/2019 at 5:49 AM, JayInOz said:

Here in Australia there are no native animals with hard hooves. The country is shallow and easily damaged. So the environmentalists are screaming for the wild horses in the snow country in the Southern Highlands to be culled. There are presently around seven thousand of them and they want the number reduced to around seven hundred. That's a lot of meat and hides for someone in the know. JayInOz

You could always apply a touch of marketing wank to avoid all that "eeew horse leather" stuff and call it brumby leather... something tells me the sorts who get uppity about using a slightly different type of hooven beast's hide aren't going to know much about cattle stations.

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JayInOz, laughed my ass off at that story. Got a few new agers around here kinda like them. The entertainment value on neighbors like these is never ending. Like that Idea about Brumby Leather, Matt S. I've got a deer I put on my stretcher back in early April, stretched with the hair on. I stretched hard and tight, I scraped the hair off in early May and put it back in the holding shed still on the stretcher. I pulled it out last week and cut a continuous 40 mm strip till the hide was gone. I did not have to split much off the skin side to get a nice 2oz thickness. This is gonna plait Purdy nice when I'm done. Not sure which projects to use it on yet. I am doing a couple riata's this weekend, got the strips dehaired and split, cut to width and beveled, got it all coiled up in a wet towel in a cooler waiting for Saturday morning.

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