Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Mr. Moo, Feb 28, 2011.
FWIW I think this is the perfect place for a debate between knowledgeable people, even if I don't understand the first thing about the chemistry involved. I mean, if not here, where else would such a debate take place? I would like to think that we are all getting a little more knowledge about shoe leather, and that is one of the reasons why I come here. This is SF at its best IMO. If you don't like to read long posts, just scrolll past them, or better yet, post pics of some well shined shoes! This thread can have both.
I sometimes forget that not everyone finds the same things fascinating as I do.
Back to the real world with before, treatment, and after and photos please.
What I think is great is we went beyond before, after treatments. We took that and multiplied it by 1000 to see what we got. I mean we all know our shoes look great when we polish them, but we took it a step further. I think there is awesomeness there.
This is the shoe care thread so the discussion was totally in accord with the thread title. And it's a very good development from shoe shine porn...
Its not the debate that I don't like, its the tone.
Ok, I understand that no one want's to hear arguments about molecular chemistry. I am just amazed that someone wants to take the position that conditioning leather shoes is more about adding water to leather than oil.
I will try to keep the shit storm to a minimum, and the tone as civil as possible.
[Reference to (Chapt 1, 1.4, p. 10) paragraphs removed for brevity by me, as it has already been referenced twice before.]
The chapter (chapter 1) you reference is titled “Collagen and Skin Structure” and the next chapter is titled “Skin and its Components”, “Tanning” starts at chapter 10, and while prior chapters relate to the overall processes used in a tannery, I probably would not use a chapter on Collagen and Skin Structure to support an argument on the chemical makeup of leather, as skin and leather are really two different things.
You are simply making an argument of granular semantics. I actually do know the difference between an atom and a molecule. Clearly, you are aware that amino acids contain oxygen atoms (as you just stated such), so you understood my point of replacing the existing oxygen atom (part of the water molecules existing in the skin) with the oxygen atom of the amino acids (in chromium, in the case of chrome tanning), you just chose to argue the semantic granularity to no real benefit of anyone. The point is the amino acids are used to replace one oxygen atom for another.
I do agree that the chemicals and processes used in fatliquoring are done to help bond the oils to the leather, but unfortunately all oils oxidize over time (other than volatile oils [like turpentine] that evaporate before they can oxidize). This propensity to oxidize is measured by the IV (Iodine Value) of a given oil/fat. It’s not a matter of if but when (months to years depending on the IV value of the oil, and other factors like heat).
Bonding and permanently bonding are two different things. I bonded with my first wife, but it wasn’t permanent (go figure), perhaps there just wasn’t enough liquor. Oils/fats are bonded to the leather during fat liquoring, they are not permanently bonded.
As the molecular structure of the lubricating oil changes through oxidation it becomes less bonded to the leather as the oxidation affects the hydrogen/carbon bonding in the oil.
Many of you who own shell cordovan shoes have seen oxidized oil on areas of the surface of your shoes as a white film; this is referred to as “fatty spew”
Water will, and does, flush oils from leather (even when they are bonded). As mentioned in another post, water is the ultimate solvent. Rain water, puddles, cleaning with saddle soap and water, etc... all contribute to flushing oils from leather.
First, you would not want to re fatliquor a finished leather article, because it has a finish; secondly because it has been cut to and for a specific reason (shoe, jacket, whatever) and would lose its shape, and third because using conditioning oils should be sufficient.
I’m not sure what you mean by maintaining the water content of finished leather. If you mean maintaining the water content of leather as it came from the tannery, then that is unrealistic, as leather will equalize its moisture level to that of the surrounding relative humidity. I think we have seen a few charts on that in the forum recently.
In regard to water and/or humectants in leather conditioners I can tell you that one of the more popular leather conditioners for leather boots is Obenauf’s Leather Oil. They state “Dust, dry air, water and cleaning remove oils from leather.” “Regular use of our natural oils repels water, restores and protects your leather fast and easily and will extend its service life.”
Lexol leather conditioner (one of the more commonly used leather conditioners on the market) is “emulsified into microscopic droplets”. I’m not sure what the emulsifier is (it could be water). It goes on to state that “these oil droplets bond to the leather fibers, nourishing the leather and leaving no greasy residue.” They do not state that the oil droplets bond permanently to the leather, just that they bond. And, there is no mention of humectants or of moisturizing the leather. To me it would just make sense to mention it if that were the main reason for using a leather conditioner.
Dubbin is basically wax and oil, no water. Then, of course, there is mink oil and neatsfoot oil, both used for conditioning leather, neither containing water.
This is the first time I've looked at this thread, so I don't really know what's going on, but I have to say this is the funniest picture I've ever seen on the forum.
totally agree with Crat at that point!!
patrick your pic is out of place!!! if this was on a shoe and not before a pc screen maybe it would be more apropriate!! hahah
All of the above is spot on. It frustrates me to death when people act like they can't use the scroll button on their mouse to get past discussions they aren't interested in. If it is in accordance with the theme/title of the thread, people should be able to discuss anything as long as they desire. We aren't running out of pages that can be added to the thread as far as I can tell.
You had been referenced so frequently on this thread recently that I had hoped that you would have contributed something a little more meaningful to the dialogue than that sound byte.
Separate names with a comma.