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**The Official Shoe Care Thread: Tutorials, Photos, etc.**

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Mr. Moo, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. Betelgeuse

    Betelgeuse Senior member

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    Acetone will remove the mirror shine of the shoe, correct? I cleaned they other day a pair of shoes with Renomat but couldn't take all the wax.
     
  2. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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  3. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Saddle soap might have done something aesthetically that you liked and equated to removing the wax, but I don't really believe it did a better job at removing the wax if at all removing the wax. It could have just obscured the haze to where you didn't notice it.
     
  4. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Acetone will also remove the dye ...not just the wax...from leather. Esp. if the leather has been top finished.
     
  5. Betelgeuse

    Betelgeuse Senior member

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    But only if I abuse of it, right? I'm planning to use just a touch to get rid of some of the wax and that's it. Or do you think it may rip off all the finish?
     
  6. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    If you are not looking to strip finish, it is hard not to abuse it...it is very volatile but very "corrosive," as well.

    A good analogy might be fine sanding a piece of wood with 100 grit sandpaper when what you really want is something above 300.
     
  7. Betelgeuse

    Betelgeuse Senior member

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    Gotcha. So it's a no-no. Thanks! [​IMG]
     
  8. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    There are times when acetone can be useful when refinishing leather or shoes, but, IMO, it's overkill just to remove excess wax build up.

    The thing is, by the time a person who is unfamiliar with acetone's properties realizes it is overkill, it is too late--the damage is done. And that can happen in the blink of an eye, essentially.

    If you saturate a cloth with acetone, it will strip most finishes. If you only dampen it, it will almost invariably evaporate before you can apply it to the surface of the leather.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2017
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  9. ace13x

    ace13x Senior member

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    Saddlesoap will definitely remove wax
     
  10. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    But what it leaves in its wake is grease or glycerin--both dirt magnets. And dirt is what causes cracking.

    Better to use a ph neutral baby shampoo or Lexol-ph leather cleaner.
     
  11. ace13x

    ace13x Senior member

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    Yes. There are manyvthings that can be used. Acetone, Naptha, Isopropanol, Ethanol, Turpentine etc. @DWFII is 100% correct, they can be tricky to work with and its easy to go overboard.

    There are gentler alternatives I've even used Lexol to remove wax from shell, slow but Patience is its own reward. I've also used Turpentine on shell. A lot depends on the situation.
     
  12. ace13x

    ace13x Senior member

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    I have not experience dirt being more or less attracted after using saddlesoap. I do make sure to thoroughly remove the residue, and I condition afterwards.

    I'm sure the options you provided are excellent. I was just stating saddlesoap will remove wax. My comment was not meant as an endorsement nor a warning. Weather anyone decides to use it or not, is up to them,
     
  13. Betelgeuse

    Betelgeuse Senior member

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    DWFII, would you say that Lexol and Bick 4 are "the same"? There are some packages in Amazon that include Lexol Conditioner and Cleaner, would you recommend using both?

    Is this the Lexol-ph you are refering? https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00B6EL5GM/ref=ox_sc_act_title_4?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A2IDAR1S7E3D6A
     
  14. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Well if you make sure it is the Lexol Conditioner and not the Lexol -nf (neatsfoot) a "package" should be OK--it's the right cleaner at the top of the page.

    I used to use Lexol exclusively...nothing really wrong with it but I had some few pieces of leather that it would strip the finish from...had to test every piece. Lexol conditioner is a little more water-y than the Bick4, IMO and contains more water.

    For some years now, I have liked and preferred the Bick4 and think it is just a little "softer" although used in excess it can leave a dry white film. Whether that's wax or something else I dunno.

    edited for punctuation and clarity
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2017
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  15. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Surfactants will, but is it as good as a solvent? I have a hard time believing somebody couldn't remove wax with an acetone based stripper, and could with saddle soap. Maybe the acetone loosened it up?
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2017
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  16. ace13x

    ace13x Senior member

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    Personally, I don't like Acetone for stripping. YMMV. I've used saddle soap sans any solvent pretreatment effectively, though I suppose it depends on the particulars of the OP's case.

    Note: I have not used saddle soap on shell. I've never had a need to.
     
  17. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    There's only two types of saddle soap, that I know of and I've been in this game a long time. One is tallow based, the other is glycerin based. Even though a person rinses really, really well, it is unlikely that the residues can be completely removed with either type of saddle soap.

    And then you've got the ph factor....

    If in doubt as to whether it is appropriate for shoes...well, the name says it all, doesn't it?
     
  18. ace13x

    ace13x Senior member

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    As I said: My comment was not meant as an endorsement nor a warning. Weather anyone decides to use it or not, is up to them.

    All I can add is I do not use it regularly nor as a first choice, but I've had no issues when I have.
     
  19. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    No worries.

    That said, my comments were indeed meant as a "warning" or more precisely a caution, if nothing else. There are no shoe police...all I can do is share my experiences over near 5 decades of making shoes and boots and working with leather. Whether people want to take my advice is totally "up to them."
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2017
  20. MansardRoof

    MansardRoof Well-Known Member

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    I am reminded of the time I used saddle soap on a Brooks leather bike saddle and it split right in half so you're absolutely right to warn people and people need to use caution with saddle soap, (as they should with any chemical). In my situation, the hazing was really bothering me and the boots were only 160.00, so I was ready to try anything and it happened to work.
     

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