Some ready for new homes!

EdCaffreyMS

"The Montana Bladesmith"
Got into a "Hunter" building spree...... I hope to have them available on my website within a the next couple of days.....

DSC00433.jpg


DSC00423.jpg


DSC00402.jpg


DSC00391.jpg


DSC00411.jpg
 

EdCaffreyMS

"The Montana Bladesmith"
Thanks for the kind words! I've been really excited the past couple of days..... I have 6 more blades in the works.... all are Mosaic Damascus, I'm anxious to get them going/completed. They have some pretty kickin patterns if I do say so myself! :)
 

cajundad

Well-Known Member
Awesome work! Please share how you are molding the leather around the different shapes of your knives?
 

EdCaffreyMS

"The Montana Bladesmith"
Awesome work! Please share how you are molding the leather around the different shapes of your knives?
That's much easier then most realize..... first and foremost.... it has to be QUALITY Oak/Veg tanned leather (I buy all my leather from Wickett & Craig)

Once the sheath is sewn, and completed, but before any dye or finish is applied, I go to the laundry sink in our basement.

Turn on the hot water, and let it get as hot as it will. SOAK the empty sheath with hot water, until it has that faint smell of cow (that's when natural tanned leather is "in case".. meaning moldable.) Insert the knife (I leave them bare, but some wrap them in plastic wrap) and then using my thumbs/fingers, I mold the leather to fit the knife. Once I'm happy with it, which is only a couple of minutes of working it, I pull out the knife, dry it well, then....
If it's winter, the sheath gets hung on a hook in the basement, until it's dry, or if it's summer/warm weather, I hang sheaths outside. Here in Montana, with our super low humidity, it usually takes a day or two for the sheaths to dry. After drying, if I color/dye them, I dip the entire sheath in leather dye, then let that dry for another day, then apply a product called "Tan-Kote".... OR I have also used regular old shoe polish. Either works equally well. The only difference I've found is that the Tan-Kote makes the leather much stiffer, which tend to hold the knife better.

On those sheaths in the above pics, that are lighter tan color, there was no dye used, except for black on the edges, and finished/coated with the Tan-Kote. I purchase the Wickett & Craig "skirting" leather, pre-dyed in "russet" color. The pre-dyed costs a few cents more per sq foot initially, but considering good leather dye is $30+ per quart.... if I don't have to dye the leather myself....its a time and money saver. ;)

The biggest keys are.... QAULITY leather (that means DO NOT BUY from Tandy, or use any "Chrome tanned" leather for building sheaths. You MUST also is allow the leather to dry COMPLETELY, whether from water/wet molding, or from applying dye, BEFORE apply any finish. Putting any finish on leather that is not completely dry, traps moisture inside the leather, and dramatically impacts it's durability and longevity.

Just a final tip.... ever see an old knife with a sheath, that has green gunk around/on the guard? That is el-cheapo chrome tanned leather (chromatic acids) reacting with the non-ferric guard material. ;)
 
Last edited:

cajundad

Well-Known Member
Thanks much for the guidance. That is priceless advice and I will use it on my next sheath attempt. The first two did NOT turn out well but I'm still learning. 5 years ago, in anticipation of having more time when I reached retirement (I'm still working) I bought online thru ebay 1/2 of a cow side. One side is a smooth finish, the other rough. That's what I've been using so far for my efforts. No idea as to quality but it appears to be so. It's 10 ounce leather so very hefty. Thanks again for your willingness to share your knowledge.
 

Boatbuilder

Well-Known Member
Another optional way to form your sheath is to get sheath soaking wet from warm/hot water and put knife that has been oiled and wrapped in Saran Wrap into a vac seal bag and pull vacuum. This will suck the leather sheath tightly around the knife. I usually leave over night and take out the next morning and let air dry for a few days before further treatment to the leather.
 

Gliden07

Well-Known Member
Glad to hear the new machine is working out after the previous horror show you had with the other machine!!
 
Top