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Old 05-07-2018, 09:44 AM
ArsenalFan ArsenalFan is offline
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Default Basic Leather Care?

Hi All!

Are there any leather care products members prefer for basic external care of holsters? I'm sure I'm not alone in having accumulated an odd mixture of holsters over the years (black/brown, plain/basket weave, etc.). When some start seeming a bit dry on the outside, what are good choices for giving them a quick wipe down with to keep the leather fresh and clean without leaving residues/stains/etc.?

Thanks in advance for all comments and suggestions!
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Old 05-07-2018, 10:12 AM
diyj98 diyj98 is offline
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I have a few collectible holsters from WWII that I won't put anything on, but those holster aren't used. I won't risk treatments darkening or changing the holsters original condition.

I've used Lexol on leather that I actually use. It seems to do a good job of keeping the leather in good shape after being exposed to weather and use. I'm sure you'll get a wide range of opinions.
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Old 05-07-2018, 11:06 AM
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For routine maintenance I always recommend neutral shoe polish, lightly applied to exterior surfaces, buffed with a soft cloth.

Basically just an inert wax, provides some protection against moisture and surface abrasion without saturating the leather. The neutral polish has no dye content so it won't stain clothing. If you have minor scratches or abrasions to deal with those can be touched up with leather dye (or a felt-tip of the proper color), then apply the neutral shoe polish.

Oily or greasy preparations are to be avoided because over time they will saturate the leather, softening it and overcoming the form-fitting qualities.
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Old 05-07-2018, 12:05 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LoboGunLeather View Post
For routine maintenance I always recommend neutral shoe polish, lightly applied to exterior surfaces, buffed with a soft cloth.

Basically just an inert wax, provides some protection against moisture and surface abrasion without saturating the leather. The neutral polish has no dye content so it won't stain clothing. If you have minor scratches or abrasions to deal with those can be touched up with leather dye (or a felt-tip of the proper color), then apply the neutral shoe polish.

Oily or greasy preparations are to be avoided because over time they will saturate the leather, softening it and overcoming the form-fitting qualities.
Ditto!
The oldest holster I have, originally purchased in about 1985, is for my Model 60-0. I used this EXACT treatment to restore its luster a few years ago.
It's back to its original beauty....WITH some added character!
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Old 05-07-2018, 12:19 PM
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I've been using Fiebing's Saddle Soap. I just put a small amount and work it in. It seems to clean up my old leather holsters nicely.
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Old 05-07-2018, 01:48 PM
Ziggy2525 Ziggy2525 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArsenalFan View Post
Hi All!

Are there any leather care products members prefer for basic external care of holsters? I'm sure I'm not alone in having accumulated an odd mixture of holsters over the years (black/brown, plain/basket weave, etc.). When some start seeming a bit dry on the outside, what are good choices for giving them a quick wipe down with to keep the leather fresh and clean without leaving residues/stains/etc.?

Thanks in advance for all comments and suggestions!
Not a pro. Just a hobbyist that builds some of my own holsters. Here's how I learned to take care of veg tanned leather like holsters are made from. YMMV.

Three things for treating veg tanned leather.
Cleaning - moisturizing (oiling) - protective sealing.

Cleaning - If it's dirty, use either non-flavored carbonated water (club soda) or saddle soap as a surfactant to lift the dirt off the surface of the leather. Let it dry after cleaning.

Moisturizing (oiling) - Use a light coat of non-oxidizing oil on the surface to moisturize the collagen fibers in the leather to keep it from cracking. Light coat, don't use much. You can use pure neatsfoot oil, cold pressed extra virgin olive oil, coconut oil, or lanolin. Two things with neatsfoot. It will darken the leather - the others won't. Also use pure neatsfoot oil, not neatsfoot "compound". Neatsfoot Compound is neatsfoot oil mixed with other oils (e.g. fish oil) to make it cheaper. The "other" oils may oxidize and may damage the stitching.

Sealing - Use a low melt temp wax like Carnuba or Bees Wax to seal and protect the surface of the leather.

For just maintaining a holster or knife sheath, like Lobo mentioned, I have found neutral shoe polish is easiest. IIRC, Kiwi neutral shoe polish is Carnuba wax and lanolin oil with a bit of naptha solvent to keep the wax soft.

Anyway, that's how I learned it.
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Last edited by Ziggy2525; 05-08-2018 at 04:52 AM.
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Old 05-07-2018, 01:52 PM
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I use Renaissance wax on guns, stocks and leather.
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Old 05-07-2018, 02:30 PM
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Black Rock Leather'N'Rich is the product I use on my holsters. I wipe some on, sparingly, with my fingers and wipe it off with a cloth or paper towel and then I buff the holster with a shoe brush. I picked up a jar at the local gun show last week.
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Old 05-07-2018, 02:55 PM
RGVshooter RGVshooter is offline
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Saddle soap & mink oil
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Old 05-07-2018, 02:56 PM
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Quote:
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I use Renaissance wax on guns, stocks and leather.

Same here.
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Old 05-09-2018, 11:53 AM
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Blackrock

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Old 05-09-2018, 06:10 PM
kthom kthom is offline
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I have not used nor seen the Black Rock product. However, in my experience, the information provided in Lobo Gunleather's post is very good advice. It has been basically the only way I've taken care of my leather for a good many years after having learned the hard way after using others. I don't use oil or oily products on my holsters or belts. If my leather needs some color, I use as small an amount of leather dye as needed to replace or touch up existing color. I polish/buff off the dye residue with a coarse rag until I get little or no color on the rag. Then I apply the neutral shoe polish over the whole item, let it dry, and then buff with a good quality shoe shine brush and finish off by polishing with a piece of ladie's nylon hose. When finished I generally do not have problems with color transferring to my clothing and the leather looks nice.

If the neutral shoe polish is used regularly, it tends to protect the leather from drying out and the only softening that takes place is from the normal wear that will eventually somewhat soften the leather. My leather lasts a long time, but all leather will eventually deteriorate as it becomes older and under hard use. A lot depends on the original quality of the leather used to build the holster or belt! You can't start with cheap and poor quality leather and expect it to hold up long, especially with everyday hard use.
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Old 05-09-2018, 08:07 PM
Bakebfr480 Bakebfr480 is offline
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Neatsfoot oil is what I use on leather.
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