Stacked leather shrinkage

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Tater
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Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by Tater » Sun Feb 16, 2020 6:30 pm

I have a couple of fixed blades with stacked leather handles with enough shrinkage that it creates enough play in the guard to be noticeable. Anyone have any advice on getting some treatment on the leather. What should I use? Can I get enough treatment on them to expand the leather back? Any suggestions will be appreciated.

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New_Windsor_NY
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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by New_Windsor_NY » Sun Feb 16, 2020 9:49 pm

Tater wrote:
Sun Feb 16, 2020 6:30 pm
I have a couple of fixed blades with stacked leather handles with enough shrinkage that it creates enough play in the guard to be noticeable. Anyone have any advice on getting some treatment on the leather. What should I use? Can I get enough treatment on them to expand the leather back? Any suggestions will be appreciated.
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Mumbleypeg
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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by Mumbleypeg » Sun Feb 16, 2020 11:32 pm

You can try leather preservation solutions like neatsfoot oil, mink oil, or others, but some of them will darken leather. Read the directions to be sure, or if you don’t care if it darkens it then you can try any of them. I’ve never tried restoring stacked leather knife handles but have restored other leather items. I’d clean it thoroughly with saddle soap (follow the directions) first to remove as much dirt as possible, so the leather conditioner can penetrate. Let it dry a day or so after the saddle soaping, before using anything else.

If it’s cracked and/or dry rotting it’s probably too far gone to save.

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Tater
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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by Tater » Mon Feb 17, 2020 12:52 am

Thanks Ken, the leather is actually in good shape but the handles have just shrunk. They are new 25 year old knives that have been stored in the boxes so no dirt and grime. I don’t think a cleanup is in order, just looking to get some treatment on them. I’m hoping to bring them back without any major change in the color. Thinking of trying some clear Kiwi just to see what happens. Mink oil might do it if that doesn’t work.

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Tater

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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by eveled » Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:16 am

You can also wrap dental floss into the space at the guard to stop the rattle. Or sometimes tighten the pommel.

Berryb
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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by Berryb » Mon Feb 17, 2020 8:30 am

I would try mineral oil, cheap, should not damage the leather, and won't add any color. Anything you use will darken the leather some, but I expect the leather was pretty dark when the knives were new. Also mineral oil should not react with any metals or plastics such as spacers or pommels.
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terryl308
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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by terryl308 » Mon Feb 17, 2020 2:55 pm

I use Montana pitch blend. but it will darken the leather, it is a blend of pitch, bees wax, and mink oil. Made more for a water proof treatment. If you do try it , you will want to use a hair dryer on it after application. Being sure not to over do the heat however, just enough heat to melt it into the leather. Wipe off with a soft rag and let it dry. You should be able to find the stuff on line. I believe anything you use will darken the leather however. Good luck, ::handshake:: Terry
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kootenay joe
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Re: Stacked leather shrinkage

Post by kootenay joe » Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:55 pm

Once leather has dried enough to shrink will any treatment actually get the leather back to it's original thickness ?
In my very limited experience (~ 3 knives), oil (mink oil) softens the leather and darkens it, but otherwise, no change.
kj

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