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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Leather Shop (Moderators: Marshal Will Wingam, Ten Wolves Fiveshooter)  |  Topic: Best holster liner is? 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
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sfc rick
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« on: May 08, 2017, 05:47:45 am »


Is there really anyway to line a holster to minimize holster wear on a blued finish? I have built them over the past couple of years from using lighter weight leather with the finished side touching the revolver to lately using a felt lining to minimize wear.

You experienced guys know more making holsters, so what is the best I can hope for? Maybe I should just come to reality and not give a darn anyway?

Oh what about a suede lining.... any better?
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Marshal Will Wingam
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« Reply #1 on: May 08, 2017, 09:36:24 am »

Leather will fade the bluing even if you just let it rest against the gun. It chemically works on the bluing. So the net result is that leather will 'wear' the bluing. You could try lining it with something else, like felt or something but I've never tried that. I wouldn't hesitate if I wanted that kind of lining, though.
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sfc rick
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« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2017, 12:28:42 pm »

Leather will fade the bluing even if you just let it rest against the gun. It chemically works on the bluing. So the net result is that leather will 'wear' the bluing. You could try lining it with something else, like felt or something but I've never tried that. I wouldn't hesitate if I wanted that kind of lining, though.

Thank you for the answer. I'll just continue using felt then. It certainly seems to be all right in keeping the finishes OK. I typically like my Stainless or nickel revolvers more but also carry blued revolvers and have "noticed" a few spots that make repeated and continual contact with some of my older unlined holsters.

I will work on making the felt linings much better.
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Cliff Fendley
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« Reply #3 on: May 08, 2017, 02:12:40 pm »

If you actually USE a holster every day where it becomes exposed to dust and grit the felt or suede linings are even worse because they trap grit which then acts as sandpaper against the guns finish. Nice smoothed down leather whether it be flesh or grain side is about as good as you get but my experimentation has actually found a plain unlined holster to have less overall wear on an edc gun.

I work as a contractor as my real job and have an ongoing test with three different holsters and guns and alternated carrying them. One with smooth side in leather, one with suede lining, and the other just a plain unlined skirting leather.

After carrying these guns for years now the gun being carried in the plain unlined holster has the least blueing wear. I believe the smooth leather holster allows the gun to move around in it more causing blueing wear and the suede holster is dirty and gritty inside. The plain old unlined leather holster is the happy medium.
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« Reply #4 on: May 09, 2017, 02:13:12 am »

I once used suede that a friend supplied to make him a rifle case.  The suede turned out to be chrome tanned and would make almost any kind of metal it touched rust before your eyes however much you oiled it.  I've never used it since.
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Trailrider
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« Reply #5 on: May 09, 2017, 10:30:22 am »

A properly-fitting holster, wet-fit and molded to the gun will still contact the gun at at-least seven points. If not, the gun will slop around in the holster producing more rubbing. The only way to keep a gun from having bluing rubbed off is...NEVER put it in a holster!  OTOH, over the years of making and using holsters, I find the best lining to be veg-tanned, topgrain cowhide, smooth side to the gun. Suede is a definite NO-NO for linings. It will pick up dirt and the surface is more susceptible to absorbing moisture, causing it to act like sandpaper! Even John Bianchi, in his book, "Blue Steel and Gun Leather" stated that suede was NOT the best lining. Why, then, did he make holsters with suede lining? Because customers demanded it!  Shocked Roll Eyes

In 40 years of making holsters professionally, I have found that topgrain cowhide, smooth side to the gun is the only way to go.
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sfc rick
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« Reply #6 on: May 09, 2017, 05:20:47 pm »

A properly-fitting holster, wet-fit and molded to the gun will still contact the gun at at-least seven points. If not, the gun will slop around in the holster producing more rubbing. The only way to keep a gun from having bluing rubbed off is...NEVER put it in a holster!  OTOH, over the years of making and using holsters, I find the best lining to be veg-tanned, topgrain cowhide, smooth side to the gun. Suede is a definite NO-NO for linings. It will pick up dirt and the surface is more susceptible to absorbing moisture, causing it to act like sandpaper! Even John Bianchi, in his book, "Blue Steel and Gun Leather" stated that suede was NOT the best lining. Why, then, did he make holsters with suede lining? Because customers demanded it!  Shocked Roll Eyes

In 40 years of making holsters professionally, I have found that topgrain cowhide, smooth side to the gun is the only way to go.


Thanks
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Cliff Fendley
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« Reply #7 on: May 09, 2017, 07:36:10 pm »

My tests show opposite of Trailriders. Actually in my ongoing test the smooth side to the gun leather has worn the finish worse than the flesh side unlined holster.

I believe it's because the grain side is slightly harder and from putting pressure against the holster it appears but more than anything the sharp edges of the gun has the finish worn bare. Keep in mind these holsters are being worn while I'm doing construction work so they are being pressed against tractor seats and banged against things all day long. So even a molded holster winds up getting smashed against the gun and therefore your sharp edges get rubbed with more pressure. The flesh side of the leather is a bit more forgiving.
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« Reply #8 on: May 22, 2017, 11:30:10 am »

If you actually USE a holster every day where it becomes exposed to dust and grit the felt or suede linings are even worse because they trap grit which then acts as sandpaper against the guns finish. Nice smoothed down leather whether it be flesh or grain side is about as good as you get but my experimentation has actually found a plain unlined holster to have less overall wear on an edc gun.

I work as a contractor as my real job and have an ongoing test with three different holsters and guns and alternated carrying them. One with smooth side in leather, one with suede lining, and the other just a plain unlined skirting leather.

After carrying these guns for years now the gun being carried in the plain unlined holster has the least blueing wear. I believe the smooth leather holster allows the gun to move around in it more causing blueing wear and the suede holster is dirty and gritty inside. The plain old unlined leather holster is the happy medium.
This is where I'm at with it. I don't even offer linings and will only do them when I need to protect from hardware. I prefer pigskin for that.
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« Reply #9 on: May 22, 2017, 06:15:28 pm »

These are things I have heard, and a thought. Some say suede is bad, others say it doesn't matter. In either case, chrome tanned material is a no go. The reason suede is frowned ed upon, is because it has a course surface that will hold dust and dirt, causing abrasions on you pistol surface. Using this course of logic, felt would also be bad.

I have used suede in only a couple of holsters, and not heard any complaints yet.

I regularly use plain veg tanned leather, either 2-3 ounce, or even 6-8 ounce, always grain side up. Others I know, prefer pig skin. In any case, you shouldn't leave your pistol in its holster when not being carried, and clean/oil regularly.

Your mileage may vary.

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1961MJS
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« Reply #10 on: June 01, 2017, 12:27:05 pm »

My tests show opposite of Trailriders. Actually in my ongoing test the smooth side to the gun leather has worn the finish worse than the flesh side unlined holster.

I believe it's because the grain side is slightly harder and from putting pressure against the holster it appears but more than anything the sharp edges of the gun has the finish worn bare. Keep in mind these holsters are being worn while I'm doing construction work so they are being pressed against tractor seats and banged against things all day long. So even a molded holster winds up getting smashed against the gun and therefore your sharp edges get rubbed with more pressure. The flesh side of the leather is a bit more forgiving.

Hi Cliff

If you finish the inside with Gum Tag etc, will what you say still be true or will the Gum be harder?

I was going to use regular vegetable tanned leather as a liner, mainly for looks, but have used Gum Tag where the flesh side is visible.

Mike
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Cliff Fendley
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« Reply #11 on: June 01, 2017, 08:42:13 pm »

I always finish with gum trag but honestly it seems to wear off after a while anyway.
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« Reply #12 on: October 31, 2017, 03:25:13 pm »

If I am making a holster on the cheap I don't line it though I do finish the rough, generally with Leather Balm but I have used Gum Trag too.  One of the guys who taught me also go me using veg tanned leather as a liner too.  I have had really good luck with milled leather and even regular veg tan in a lighter weight than the rest of the holster.  I want to try lining one with something really thin though.
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Cas City Forum Hall & CAS-L  |  CAS TOPICS  |  The Leather Shop (Moderators: Marshal Will Wingam, Ten Wolves Fiveshooter)  |  Topic: Best holster liner is? « previous next »
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