We prefer leather sheaths and holsters. There’s just nothing else like leather…it’s durable, quiet to use, and lasts well with proper care.
So, what does it take to properly care for leather goods used in the great outdoors?
Two main considerations for leather care are as follows…
1. Leather must be moisturized to prevent drying and cracking.
2. The leather goods must be sealed in some way to prevent moisture from soaking the leather.
Remember, for most of the Lucas Forge outdoor gear, vegetable tanned leather is used.
Vegetable tanned leather is easily molded to fit the accompanying knife or tool. It also takes many different dye styles with class and it’s tough.
But, under certain circumstances, if unprotected, veg-tanned leather dries, becomes brittle and cracks over long periods of time. This type of leather benefits from added moisture.
There are several commercial leather treatments, such as “Fiebing’s All Purpose Cleaner & Conditioner” or “Lexol Conditioner,” that will do just that.
Or, you can also use a basic oil product to add moisture.
We mostly choose the oil treatment. Neetsfoot oil or a plant oil, like walnut oil, usually gets the nod. Only use plant or animal derived oils for best results, not petroleum based oils.
For moisturizing leather, just rub on a light coat of oil. Allow it to set for a few seconds, then wipe away the excess. Proper treatment is as simple as that. Repeat the process occasionally and your leather remains in top shape. Oiling leather darkens it though, so remember about the color change.
Keeping leather moisturized and conditioned is the first step to success in maintaining leather goods.
We’ll look at the waterproofing in a post to follow.
~Guest post by Al
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