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Sheath Dyeing Question

Discussion in 'Sheaths & Other Leather Projects' started by Dave Hodson, Nov 22, 2019.

  1. Dave Hodson

    Dave Hodson New Member

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    I saw a video where the sheath was immersed in a bath of stain and hung to dry so I gave it a try. Pretty straightforward and the coverage was good but the resulting sheath was stiff and hard. Conditioning helped a bit but I wonder if I was using the wrong type of stain to begin with (I was using an Eco-Flo water base). Any ideas?

    Regards
    Dave
     
  2. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    I use Fiebing's dyes and the leather hardens up after application as well.
     
  3. Eric Fisher

    Eric Fisher Active Member

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    Any time you dye or wet vegetable tanned leather the oils in the leather are leached out and the leather will become harder and more brittle, especially if you are using spirit based dyes. The oils need to be replaced.
    If I am dying with spirit based dyes (Fiebing's) I will dye first then apply a cost of neatsfoot oil right after dying to the grain side only, never the flesh size. That needs to dry at room temperature for several hours and then buff with a clean cloth before applying a finish. I use Resolene cut 50/50 with water and sprayed with an air brush. 2-3 light coats.
    If I'm using ECOFLO product I use the stain not the dye. Much better coverage wit the stain. First I lightly spray the surface with water. This opens the surface pores to better receive the stain (you can do this with spirit based dyes as well). Apply the stain and let the whole thing dye for several hours at room temperature before applying oil (oil and water don't mix that well). Then buff and apply the oil and let it absorb for about 24 hours. It takes a long time on water based stains. Then buff and apply by finish as above.
    It takes me 2 days to dye and finish a piece before being ready assemble. Longer if I'm antiquing as well.
    Dip dyeing would need the same treatment.
     
    John Noon and dancom like this.
  4. Dave Hodson

    Dave Hodson New Member

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    Thanks Eric, that helps a lot
     
  5. dancom

    dancom Dust Maker Best Shop Tool

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    Eric is the leather man!
     

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