I have been interested in leatherworking for a while, and was looking for good information on how to get started, what tools to get, how expensive it is etc... also I would be interested in talking to someone about making a gun belt and holster...

Views: 2078

Reply to This

Replies to This Discussion

I'm not a leather worker personally but I am excited to watch this thread! Leather work is something that has always fascinated me.
Like, are there any guys around here who, say, make awesome leather bags for a living?
I'm an amateur leather worker. Have been for about 15 years. Mostly I just make sheaths, holsters, and belts. A really good DVD set to get a hold of is John Bianchi's Art and Secrets of Advanced Western Holster Making Tandy leather also sells some inexpensive pancake holster, field holster, and shoulder holster kits and plans. You need to get a lot of practice in and expect to fail a few times. Wet molding is really simple but you have to be careful. Buying a Red Gun or Blue Gun copy of the firearm you're holstering is a really good idea.
When I lived in KY, we would go to a man in the middle of nowhere to buy belts and things like that. He was quite an artist. I love leatherwork. Not many smells match the manliness of leather... I haven't ever tried it and don't have the means to right now but like Barz I look forward to watching this thread.
Aaron four tools that are invaluable if you're making holsters and sheaths.

1.) Overstitcher. I call it my stitching wheel. You roll it along your seam to make stitching marks so your stitching is even.
2.) Stitching or Lacing Pony. It's a specialized wooden clamp to hold your project in a good position for hand stitching.
3.) Sewing awl. Use it to make pilot holes for your stitching.
4.) Sewing Palm. After thirty stitches you'll wish you had one. They are a leather protective guard with a hard metal or plastic reinforcement to help push the needle through.

Another tool I use that is invaluable but not considered a leather working tool, is a Black & Decker Workmate. I don't have a workbench so made a work surface using hardwood plywood and put a 2x2 hardwood cleat on the bottom of it. I clamp it down in the Workmate and I get a good sized work surface. I also use it for my bullet reloading base.
Robert, unless you are going for a real rustic look you can use a small drill bit in a drill, 7/64", to make pilot holes if you use a heavy thread as in a holster. I get by without a sewing palm but use a pair of pliers if I run into a tight stitch such as when back stitching.
Your initial layout for tools will be pretty expensive. You are getting specific tools for working leather and they can be costly. Any way go to Tandy Leather website and you can get a general idea. ... I first started working with a nail, hammer,knife, and needle...Very primative but it worked. Look up mountain man supplies, and leather. If you buy it leather from Tandy It will get quite expensive.
I wouldn't even call myself an amateur leatherworking guy, but every now and then I'll go to a farm store and pick up a bag of scrap leather for a couple bucks and a sewing awl that has a wooden handle with waxed thread in it. In fact just last night I made 3 leatherman pouches for Christmas presents while I watched tv. Kind of fun, but some of the projects turn out pretty bad. ha ha ha I'd say start out with that and just play with it for a while to determine if you'd really like to get serious about it.
Your investment will vary with what projects you do. If you tool nice leather (carve & stamp) projects you'll need a heavy bench preferably with a small marble slab for a top surface, patterns tracing film, maybe a tracing stylus, carving knife, rawhide or synthetic mallet, beveling tools, shading tools, back ground tools, border tools, hole punches, edge bevelers, awls, lacing, needles, stitching thread, rubber cement, dyes, brushes, swabs, finishes and etc.
If you want quality untooled leather projects like sheaths, belts and holsters, you need something to cut out the pattern and suggest both heavy scissors or shears and razor type knife. Some others tools I would recommend are a hole punch set, rawhide mallet, edge beveler, stitching awl, skiver (to thin the strap ends), synthetic cutting board, thread for stitching, stitching needles, overstitching tool, and rubber cement, swabs and dyes and finishes. For a minimum you could get a border cutting tool or carving knife and a beveling tool. This would give you a defined border parallel to the leather edge.
Check around and see if there are any classes offered. 4-H groups and scouts do this so they may let you observe if you know a group leader. Do you have a saddle maker in your area? Check with a leather supply shop or even the library for a book or video if you need more info. I have never made any large projects but it takes patience for them! I have bought and inherited my setup and I can say it is spendy! Large investment for start up and when you go to buy large pieces of tooling leather and larger belt blanks. I don't care for the project kits with the leather included, it is not the best quality but will suffice. I am anal about stuff I build so take that into mind now that you read this. Most of what I learned was handed down to me by my father......cool huh! I went into some different areas so I had to do some reading (pre-internet) and picking guys brains that knew more. I have been doing amateur leatherwork since I was in Cub scouts and that is around 40 years now. If you want to make a holster and belt yourself, add me and message me and I'll give you some help.

RSS

Latest Activity

Jack Bauer replied to John Muir's discussion A Time To Kill in the group The Great Debate
"You're asking the wrong question.  The question isn't 'what's worth killing for'?  The question is, "what's worth taking a stand for"?    Is there anything over which you will draw an…"
4 minutes ago
Ryan Sirmeyer posted a discussion

My Introduction

Hello friends!My name is Ryan, and I am from Orlando, FL. I found this website about a year ago and finally decided to join the community portion. Being a band nerd, I decided to get a degree in Music (I play the trumpet) and was heavily involved in working with several drum and bugle corps as well as band programs around the area. Due to the types of jobs available, I am currently back in school pursuing a degree in Biomedical Sciences. I, like most, extremely enjoy reading and bettering…See More
30 minutes ago
Adam T. replied to Curtis's discussion My ex is back in my life...
"Thirded, except instead of running I would advocate standing up for yourself. Do some thinking about your self-worth and where you derive that.  Chances are you get some of that from your relationships or your treatment of her specifically.…"
43 minutes ago
John Lee Pettimore replied to Jonathan Cesarek's discussion Cybersecurity
"Learn linux."
59 minutes ago
John Lee Pettimore replied to Jonathan Cesarek's discussion Cybersecurity
"Love it."
59 minutes ago
Adam T. updated their profile
1 hour ago
Regular Joe posted a discussion

Anyone Use Bit Torrent?

What do you mainly use it for?What are your favourite torrent sites? Lifehacker.com has tons of articles about some pretty fancy stuff you can do with it (like automatically downloading episodes of your favourite tv shows as soon as they are available) but I'm only playing around with the basics for now. What are some other cool things you can do with Bit Torrent? See More
1 hour ago
Native Son replied to Pale Horse's discussion King Barack Pouting? in the group The Great Debate
"This just in.  The President is not pouting.  He's conducting business as usual...fundraising on the West Coast.  (22-24 July 2014)"
1 hour ago

© 2014   Created by Brett McKay.   Powered by

Badges  |  Report an Issue  |  Terms of Service