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Leather Quality and Properties - Page 31

post #451 of 1279
Awesome review of Glenkaren products. Glen is probably going to be receiving my credit card number real soon!

Through the discussions of mineral oils vs. vegetable/animal oils it is clear the latter is better, however I remember a long time ago there was talk of mink oil being bad for leather. Is this true, or is it only true for some synthetic versions of the stuff?
post #452 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickBOOTH View Post

Awesome review of Glenkaren products. Glen is probably going to be receiving my credit card number real soon!

Through the discussions of mineral oils vs. vegetable/animal oils it is clear the latter is better, however I remember a long time ago there was talk of mink oil being bad for leather. Is this true, or is it only true for some synthetic versions of the stuff?

Patrick,

I am not a chemist by any means. But my experience...my basic bias...is to be wary of anything synthetic. Invariably synthetics are petroleum derivatives. The compounding of which often has an impact on the environment that is just as suspect as on shoes.

That said, I came up when mink oils were all the rage and the common wisdom at the time was that they go rancid pretty quick. So I've always avoided them.

The bottom line is that there are any number of traditional products for nourishing leather...with different properties--some light, some heavy, some persistent some fugitive...there is no rational reason to resort to mineral oils or synthetic mink oils except to reduce the cost of production.

It's the same sad story--from leatherboard to GY to corrected grain leather.
post #453 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by VegTan View Post

I totally understand your complain. Accepting it means asking an administrator to delete this thread. I thought you knew how this thread started, but you don't seem to know it.

It was suggested to me at The Official Shoe Care Thread to gather my excerpts on that thread together and post them as a new thread for convenience. I try to select as accurate information as possible. If you find mistakes, please correct them. If you still dislike and feel uncomfortable about this thread, how about posting a new thread? I promise I'll never post on your thread.

My complaints don't mean anything of the sort.

You don't understand my complaints because they are not with the thread...they are with the functional anonymity of the information you're posting to it.

You're not taking responsibility for the veracity of the information you're posting. That means someone else has to. The mineral oil discussion is a perfect example. Neither you nor Pecards are demonstrably concerned by the possibility that someone will ruin a lovely pair of dress shoes after having read your postings.

At some point (long past, IMO) it becomes trolling. Nothing less.

I understand that as the OP you feel some sense of responsibility to keep dropping third party supposition at our feet...like a cat bringing its owner dead birds, rodents, etc.. (of course the cat did make its own kills).

And I applaud the impulse to start this thread. But even having started it, the moment someone else responded or posted to it, you lost ownership. You don't own this thread or control how it goes or what topics are appropriate or not. Just like real conversation in real life.

I could be mistaken but I've been here for a number of years and I believe that you are misinformed or don't understand the way this forum (any forum) works...or has worked since I've been here. You don't own it...everyone posting here has a share.

--
Edited by DWFII - 8/22/13 at 6:22am
post #454 of 1279
we still need to appreciate the work Vegtan has done on the research and posting about the different leathers, let it be from a third party. I don't see myself doing it and it's a great read.

As for the information on the mineral oil, DWFII provided information based on his wealth of experience as a shoemaker, but I don't think anyone here is deliberately posting wrong information so other's members' shoes can get ruined.

It would be good if the comments are more directed at the subject than at certain members.

just my 2 cents....
post #455 of 1279
Glenjay, can you speak to a few things about your products? First does the high amount of triglycerides in coconut oil have any negative effects, compared to say jojoba oil? Also, I was always under the impression that solvents were used to "penetrate" the leather and act as a driver for the waxes and oils, not so much has something to make it spread easier. Since it it penetrating I figured you were slightly harming the leather in the process of conditioning. Do you have any thoughts on this?
post #456 of 1279
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by VegTan View Post

I totally understand your complain. Accepting it means asking an administrator to delete this thread. I thought you knew how this thread started, but you don't seem to know it.

It was suggested to me at The Official Shoe Care Thread to gather my excerpts on that thread together and post them as a new thread for convenience. I try to select as accurate information as possible. If you find mistakes, please correct them. If you still dislike and feel uncomfortable about this thread, how about posting a new thread? I promise I'll never post on your thread.

My complaints don't mean anything of the sort.

You don't understand my complaints because they are not with the thread...they are with the functional anonymity of the information you're posting to it.

You're not taking responsibility for the veracity of the information you're posting. That means someone else has to. The mineral oil discussion is a perfect example. Neither you nor Pecards are demonstrably concerned by the possibility that someone will ruin a lovely pair of dress shoes after having read your postings.

At some point (long past, IMO) it becomes trolling. Nothing less.

I understand that as the OP you feel some sense of responsibility to keep dropping third party supposition at our feet...like a cat bringing its owner dead birds, rodents, etc.. (of course the cat did make its own kills).

I'm anonymous, but owner of each excerpt isn't. I don't understand why this is problematic.

Quote:
And I applaud the impulse to start this thread. But even having started it, the moment someone else responded or posted to it, you lost ownership. You don't own this thread or control how it goes or what topics are appropriate or not. Just like real conversation in real life.

I could be mistaken but I've been here for a number of years and I believe that you are misinformed or don't understand the way this forum (any forum) works...or has worked since I've been here. You don't own it...everyone posting here has a share.

Of course I know, so I wrote this thread, not my thread.
post #457 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by wurger View Post

As for the information on the mineral oil, DWFII provided information based on his wealth of experience as a shoemaker, but I don't think anyone here is deliberately posting wrong information so other's members' shoes can get ruined.

No, and the guy that hit your dog wasn't deliberately texting while driving so that he could have an accident.

Responsibility doesn't begin or end with intent. It is informed by understanding your connection to the consequences of your actions--deliberate or not.

If someone posts stuff...especially if he/she does it serially/repeatedly...without having the ability to verify or filter the correctness of that information (or the willingness to listen to those that do), there ought to be a disclaimer at the very least.

And a certain circumspect reluctance to defend unverified information, at best.
post #458 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by wurger View Post

As for the information on the mineral oil, DWFII provided information based on his wealth of experience as a shoemaker, but I don't think anyone here is deliberately posting wrong information so other's members' shoes can get ruined.

No, and the guy that hit your dog wasn't deliberately texting while driving so that he could have an accident.

Responsibility doesn't begin or end with intent. It is informed by understanding your connection to the consequences of your actions--deliberate or not.

If someone posts stuff...especially if he/she does it serially/repeatedly...without having the ability to verify or filter the correctness of that information (or the willingness to listen to those that do), there ought to be a disclaimer at the very least.

And a certain circumspect reluctance to defend unverified information, at best.

agreed on all points above, and no finger pointing at all! haha
post #459 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by VegTan View Post

I'm anonymous, but owner of each excerpt isn't. I don't understand why this is problematic.


It's not that you are anonymous (to some degree or another most everyone here is anonymous) but that your postings are "functionally anonymous" (I don't know if it's a language thing or not but I suspect you're not reading, you're skimming).

Functionally anonymous--at the very least, the point is that no one...especially not you...is taking responsibility or can be held accountable for the information you're posting. And the people you're quoting aren't here to explain or discuss. Because of that, the excerpts threaten to become nothing more than a tool to bludgeon people. And no one gets their hands dirty.

In point of fact, I don't have all that much objection to you posting links...occasionally, sparingly...to inform. What I object to is your insistence that the information you're posting is gospel even in the face of more in-depth and better reasoned remarks.

The fact is that you don't know whether any of what you post is true or not. You don't even have any basis (experience) to conjecture. That's the problem.
post #460 of 1279

I am definitely not an expert, so this is part comment, part question, and I am certain I don't know the answer.

 

Leather starts with a complex biological substance- the hide. It is then subjected to a series of processes to preserve it. These are relatively consistent, but definitely vary depending on the tannery, the properties of the hide, and the intended use of the leather. Waxes and oils are then returned to the leather using a wide variety fat liquors, under varying conditions, for varying times. For modern leather making techniques, at least the tanner is likely to know the chemical composition of the treatments used. For more traditional leather making, like shell cordovan, it is not clear that the tanners analyze the compounds they use, so even they may not know exactly what is in the mixtures they use. Not that they would tell you if they did.

 

For after market treating leather, one would expect that the ideal substance to treat the leather might be designed to return to it whatever oils and waxes may have left the item over time. But this would depend not only on how it was made, but how it was treated once put into service.

 

Of course, it is also possible that the ideal restorative might not be the same material that was in the leather originally. Then the ideal substance would depend on all of the above, plus how the leather is to be used.

 

The consumer has nearly no chance of knowing any of this. Even the "how it was treated" part really means "what substances left the leather due to its treatment". Knowing this would require chemical extraction of the new and the use leather to figure out what had changed.

 

Given this, it seems unlikely that there possibly could be one compound that ideally restored leather, no matter what hide, how tanned, how fat liquored and how used.

 

People have used leather for thousands of years because it is very robust under the stresses to which we subject it. If it were that critical what to use once it is made, then we would have found something else.

 

I can imagine that a company that made conditioners and polishes, or a tanner, might have the resources and inclination to do this research. However, once knowing what was LIKELY to have left a particular batch of leather over time, this would not tell even the conditioner maker or tanner know how to treat a piece of leather with nothing known about it.

 

I would think the best one could hope for is not doing harm and preserving water resistance, to the extent it was water resistant to begin with. More ambitiously hoping to prolong leather life and the right amount of flexibility might be asking a lot for any single compound.

 

Just my non-expert thoughts.

post #461 of 1279

For those who want to avoid turpentine and similar, there is always 

Collonil 1909 'Supreme Creme' . Bonhour recommended this to me some months ago  A small dab of it, and a good brushing brings up a deep lustre. Contains 'natural waxes and oils'. It has hardly any smell. 

 

Sorry about the shouting in this post. Because of a medical condition I find it difficult to cut and paste and then change font sizes.

post #462 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by dbhdnhdbh View Post

I am definitely not an expert, so this is part comment, part question, and I am certain I don't know the answer.
...

Just my non-expert thoughts.

Most of which are pretty correct, IMO.

I would only add a few caveats: Techniques for tanning leather and the products that are appropriately used to maintain it, form a limited set. Most of which have already been discovered and their properties catalogued. Those methods and materials that were less than appropriate, unsatisfactory, or destructive have all been tried and discarded.

Almost without exception, materials or techniques that are not within the Traditional lexicon are employed today for one reason and one reason only--expediency.

My other remark speaks to your thoughts regarding replacing oils, etc., that were lost during the tanning and currying process. In my opinion you are on the right track. But we need to think about what logically follows--namely that the introduction of materials that are foreign or alien to the nature of the skin or leather ought to be done with great care and deliberation. Not just for reasons of profit, IOW.

BTW, I suspect, having talked to Skip and Nick and others at Horween that they do indeed understand the process and the chemicals they use. At that level, after that long in the business, nothing is left to chance.
post #463 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by patrickBOOTH View Post

Glenjay, can you speak to a few things about your products? First does the high amount of triglycerides in coconut oil have any negative effects, compared to say jojoba oil? Also, I was always under the impression that solvents were used to "penetrate" the leather and act as a driver for the waxes and oils, not so much has something to make it spread easier. Since it it penetrating I figured you were slightly harming the leather in the process of conditioning. Do you have any thoughts on this?

The interesting thing about jojoba oil is that it is not a triglyceride like most plant/vegetable oils so it has a lower IV number than most other plant/vegetable oils. The IV (Iodine Value) is the measurement of how fast something will oxidize through the absorption on oxygen atoms (Iodine it seems acts the same as oxygen in this case, but is easier to see and measure). The lower the number the slower the oil will oxidize. Oxidation is what makes oil go rancid. Jojoba oil has an IV of around 83. Peanut oil has an IV of 93. Sesame oil has an IV of around 107. Sunflower seed oil has an IV of around 125. The reason for the high IV numbers is because a lot of plant/vegetable oils are unsaturated fats (lower hydrogen atom count). Jojoba oil (actually a liquid wax) is a composed of saturated wax esters and therefore more resistant to oxidation.

In regard to saturation: animal fats tend to do better than plant/vegetable oils. For example beef tallow (and neatsfoot oil) has an IV of around 50, and lard has an IV of around 58. What is interesting is that mink oil has an IV of around 85 (similar to jojoba oil). Coconut oil is a highly saturated fat and has an IV of about 10; far lower than any other plant or animal oil. Jojoba oil, and mineral oil, are straight chain molecules which make them strong water barriers. Triglycerides (including coconut oil) are inherently not straight chain molecules and allow for some level of moisture to pass through. Because coconut oil is highly saturated it also absorbs very well into leather.

As a side note: mineral oil is also highly saturated, inherently, because it is a hydrocarbon.

In regard to solvents penetrating leather: This does happen, but it is not really a desired action, and it evaporates pretty quickly (a few hours to a few minutes depending on a number of factors) . Oils are drawn into the leather fiber through absorption, not driven in by solvent. The solvent might play a very minor roll in opening the pores of the leather to assist in absorption, but that would be very minor if at all, and almost any finish on the leather would impede that.

Wax stays mainly on the surface of the leather and/or the leather finish (when applied as shoe polish). Fatliquoring is a different story.
post #464 of 1279
Quote:
Originally Posted by JermynStreet View Post

What was the original use for suede? Was it purely decorative? Is there any application where suede can outlast leather or is more durable?

Don't know if this question ever got answered...but I'm doing some research on suede now. The term "suede" comes from the French phrase "gants de Suede" or "gloves from Sweden." That leads me to believe that the first suede was used for gloves. Although I would guess this was split suede, since you'd want something thinner and more pliable for gloves.
post #465 of 1279
Nevermind
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