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cartrige loops on gun belt problem

This is a discussion on cartrige loops on gun belt problem within the Ruger Single Action forums, part of the Pistol & Revolver Forum category; I got a set of holsters and a gun belt for my 357 vaquero's it's a left hand set with a cross draw. The set ...


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Old December 26th, 2009, 04:41 PM   #1
 
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cartrige loops on gun belt problem

I got a set of holsters and a gun belt for my 357 vaquero's it's a left hand set with a cross draw. The set came out of Texas and the craftsmanship is outstanding. My problem is I left the cartrige loops with the ammo in them for about a month and had an extreamly difficult time getting the ammo out, I had to use a set of channel lock pliers and a small screwdriver, it was like pulling teeth. The loops seem to be made out of soft leather that grips the bullets. What product can I use or do to the leather to make the loops give up the ammo ?



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Old December 26th, 2009, 07:08 PM   #2
 
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My guess is the gun belt was newly made and when you placed your cartridges in the loops the loops shrunk over time encasing your cartridges. The situation will get better with time and use. You should treat all your leather goods other than suede with a leather conditioner. I use Bicks 4 on my sheaths I make for my knives and also the occasional holster. I use to use Lexall which most farm and ranch supply stores carry. While Lexall is good, Bicks 4 comes more highly recommended from Leather Craftsmen. It must be good because my leather supply source tries to keep it stocked, but the demand is high. Springfield Leather Company carries it. If all you can find is neatsfoot oil; it will do to, but not as well. As a reminder your brass will tarnish in the leather and keep your gun oiled or stored out of the holster because leather holds moisture.
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Old December 27th, 2009, 10:08 AM   #3
 
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Everyone has their favorite. I recently tried Sno Seal and have decided that it will be my final top coat on all my leather projects. Requires a heat gun or hairdryer but it really works for me. I had the same problem with a money cartridge belt I made a while ago and the snow seal did wonders on it. So I would think any leather product will help, but I would guess that the inside of the cartridge loops could stand to be burnished a little bit. Instead of chashing around for the right product you can go into the kitchen and get some Olive Oil. A lot of leathersmiths use olive oil. Would guess that the flesh side has a little Knapp to it. With time and taking rounds in and out of it, it'll break in. So to smooth it, test two or three by using it dry and then try a little conditioner. Here's my secret weapon, a ball point pen. Simply run the burnishing tool in and out. Burnished leather is the result of friction. Don't over do it, tight is better than loose. This belt is a 357 and the pen that was laying on the table here worked just perfect.

IMG_0304.JPG
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Old December 27th, 2009, 10:58 AM   #4
 
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I do not leave cartridges in my gunbelt loops more than a couple of days. Leather tanning salts and chemicals sometimes remain in the leather, which can be corrosive to brass. The problem is not as severe if you use nickle-plated cartridge cases.

Leaving cartridge cases in the loops also will tend to "strech" the loops a little, and then cartridges get loose and can fall out,---- if you get a little sideways.

Unless you wear and use the holster rig everyday and can cycle your cartridges every few days, then no need to worry. Water will "shrink" leather a little. Just be causious how you use it.
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Old December 27th, 2009, 11:37 AM   #5
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rhino57 View Post
I got a set of holsters and a gun belt for my 357 vaquero's it's a left hand set with a cross draw. The set came out of Texas and the craftsmanship is outstanding. My problem is I left the cartrige loops with the ammo in them for about a month and had an extreamly difficult time getting the ammo out, I had to use a set of channel lock pliers and a small screwdriver, it was like pulling teeth. The loops seem to be made out of soft leather that grips the bullets. What product can I use or do to the leather to make the loops give up the ammo ?
_______________________________________________

rhino57, as said in an earlier reply, everyone has favorites. For better leather goods I use and highly recommend products made by Obenhaufs, particularly their heavy duty leather preservative; see at: Obenauf's Leather Care Products. If after using this product you still want to slick up the inside of your cartridge belt loops some more, I suggest using Ross Leather Dressing; see at: Ross Leather .
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Old December 27th, 2009, 12:45 PM   #6
 
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I'll second the recomendation that you shouldn't leave the cartridges in the loops very long. You will end up with the opposite problem of what you have now....too loose.
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Old December 27th, 2009, 05:14 PM   #7
 
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Two options I can think of- form a loop of waxed paper (wax towards the leather) and place it in the cartridge loop, then insert cartridge. The wax will help the leather release the round. This is used by several holster makers when forming a holster to the gun. That .002" is enough to provide smooth release, yet good retention.
Option 2- spray the cartridge loop's interior with a "dry-lube" type spray. Rem-Dry is one that I've used, but there's several on the market. Immediately insert cartridges. End result is the same.
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Old December 28th, 2009, 09:05 AM   #8
 
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I use Snowproof in the brown can as recommended years ago by El Paso Saddlery...and have done so for at least 30 yrs. Neat's Foot oil will rot your stitching, if its linen, over a period of yrs and it makes the leather extremely soft as well. I like fitted holsters, have made probably dozens, and always fit the holster to the gun. I wet it, then wrap the gun in a baggie, forcing it into the tight wet leather. As soon as I've molded the leather to the gun, I remove it and let the leather dry overnight.

The next day it gets a thick coat of Snowproof which I "melt" into the leather with my wife's hair drier. Usually all of it is absorbed, what little is left I rub off with a piece of toweling. Two coats work well, and I renew it once a yr or so. Snowproof waterproofs leather as much as is possible and gives a nice patina over time. Used on the cartridge loops it performs the same way. If yours are too tight, you might try the wetting method described above, then use Snowproof to condition it after thoroughly drying.

Gun leather is not meant for storage. Remove your gun and the cartridges when you're finished for the day. The acids used in tanning or moisture retained in the leather will rust your piece or corrode your shells.

I've posted both of these pics before, so my apologies to those who've seen 'em. The old one is 25 -30 yrs old at least. Nice Patina from the Snowproof and pretty much as tight as I built it.
The other two were built in the last 8 months and finished in the same way; still tight enough not to need a thong, even on horseback.
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Old December 29th, 2009, 05:30 PM   #9
 
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Nice work Rodfac
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Old December 31st, 2009, 08:37 AM   #10
 
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Thank you all very much for the detailed information, I'm sure I can now take care of the problem, thank's again for the help. L.B.
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