Leather For Holsters:

Discussion in 'The Powder Keg' started by hooker, Mar 22, 2002.

  1. Any of you know where I can purchase leather over the net? I am wanting to make my own holster for A Ruger Super Blackhawk.
     
  2. Try Tandy Leathergoods. Sorry I don't know if they have a web site or not.
     

  3. Gary, appreciate the info. Also want to thank you for your service to our country. My oldest son is into his second tour of duty with the U.S.MARINE CORPS. And yes Tandy does have a web site. It is www.tandyleather.com. Good shooting to you.
     
  4. Being an experienced leather worker may I suggest you make sure you get a bark or vegetable tanned leather and NOT chrome tanned leather for your holster?

    I am a proponant of not using leather at all in holsters since many processers of leather use harsh chemicals to process the leathers. But, if you must...no chromed tanned leather is my opinion.

    Another option is lining the holster with a pigskin split or, better yet, a non dyed suede...it's softer and less abrasive on the gun's finish. It's easy to apply...simple contact cement holds it but I always stitch the pieces together. All the holsters I have reluctantly made for people I insisted in the additional lining and most have been thankful for it.

    I'm not sure if you are an experienced leather worker, but if not, when you make the holster you'll be hooked on leather work.

    Also, if this is your first project you will need to invest in certain tools and equipment such as a good poly or raw hide leather mallet, stamping tools (if designing), hole punches if you plan on stitching anything, edge finisher, a good leather knife and possibly a good ceramic leather knive blade if you plan on carving a design, a good pair of leather shears, a rivet setter, etc.

    Have fun....because it is fun.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2002
  5. One Eye

    One Eye G&G Newbie

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    Dale: are you suggesting "don't go with leather"? What DO you recommend?
     
  6. One eye,

    Most leather dealers buy from vaiousleather processing companies....some locally, perhaps....some perhaps foreign.

    Some leather processing companies unscrupulously will use harsh chemicals and salts to spead up the tanning process. Most above-board companies do not.

    Good companies offer a bark tanned leather ( tanin from tree bark is used as a natural tanning aid) and is generally considered safe for firearm finishes. Another term is vegeatable tanned.

    Foreign leather processors often use animal urine in their process and that is actually no tanning method at all. Just a temporary preservative and the leather contains salts harmful to gun finishes.

    Please steer clear of any leather advertised as chromium tanned. It's a harsh salt product that will transmit or migrate into the gun's finish.

    Keep in mind harsh chemicals are not necessarily harmful to a gun's finish 'over night', so to speak. It may take some time. It may not happen at all. Look at the chemicals similarly to corrosive ammo used in guns but, in this case, you don't clean your holsters.

    Most harm to finish is actually what we call 'leather worn' and some think the missing finish is from the gun rubbing against the inside of the holster. That's only partially true.

    When I make holsters for people I tell them my views and let them make the determination. But, at any rate I use leather that I am reasonably sure has been vegetable or bark tanned.

    I have even suggested putting a 'slip' made of nylon fabric between the leather and the gun which is sown to the rough side of the leather which would normally come into contact with the gun. But, if you do this, beware....it makes for a slick and almost friction-less surface and you have to have some sort of thumb break or other feature to secure the gun in the holster.

    By and large, most reputable leather outlets, such as Tandy or Leather Warehouse, etc., have buyers for them who know what they are doing and you shouldn't have any problem. Most problems come from buying leather or already made holsters that are imported.

    That's about it in a nutshell.
     
  7. One Eye

    One Eye G&G Newbie

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    Thanks Dale, good stuff to know.
     
  8. One Eye

    One Eye G&G Newbie

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    What are your thoughts on "Hunter" products?