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Thread: Stretching Leather Holsters

  1. #1

    Default Stretching Leather Holsters

    We are required to have leather holsters on our leather duty belts. Most of the time I cannot find holsters made specifically for the newer popular 123 flashlights and I end up improvising. What is the best way to stretch leather so that a flashlight that is just slightly larger than intended can be used in a leather holster?

  2. #2
    Flashaholic
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    I have had several holsters made for my lights. Here is the place to go:

    http://www.leatherwork.com

    I think he is having trouble with his computer on email, so give him a call. (Richard Dix).

    Excellent product, custom fit and for a VERY reasonable price. He made some for me for my 6P but if you send him any light, he will custom make it, form fit, for that light. They take a few days to stretch in, but they work great. He even machined a little piece that fits into the bottom of the sheath (you can't see it) that prevents the 6P's buttom from turning on even when inserted fully into the sheath.

    Go to his website, and look under the custom section.

    J

  3. #3
    Banned
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    Soak the leather overnight in water. Stick in object slightly larger than intended item. Let dry.

    Been there, done that...

    Works great for boots too, but you got to wear them until they dry...

    Oh, yeah, and the leather will also shrink in too large areas too...

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    For *real* stubborn stuff, you might need to boil it.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    Umm, do not soak in water, do not boil (imho).

    If a holster is too tight, place the object that fits into the holster within a thin plastic bag (think 'glad' sandwich bag)... insert into holster and simply leave it alone. You can also use a thin dress sock if the holster really needs to be stretched.

    -- hint, it is easier to stretch a holster than it is to properly shrink it, so start of thinking 'thin' and try 1 bag... if that does not produce the desired results, try 2 bags.

    The above is fairly the normal procedure for stretching gun holster... check www.kramerleather.com/ for details... or search www.thehighroad.org or search www.glocktalk.com I'd think it would work well for what you want to do too.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    I will give those ideas a try. Thanks

  7. #7
    *Flashaholic* PlayboyJoeShmoe's Avatar
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    Along those same lines...

    If I am to carry Stinger, or G2 w/KL3 I need a holster that puts the head of the light around at the top of my belt. Both lights gouge my spare tire in the Garrity/OT holster.

    I don't require leather, but do require open top!

    Essentially what I need is a low riding holster to fit 123 size lights.

  8. #8
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    [ QUOTE ]
    Datasaurusrex said:
    Umm, do not soak in water, do not boil (imho).

    If a holster is too tight, place the object that fits into the holster within a thin plastic bag (think 'glad' sandwich bag)... insert into holster and simply leave it alone. You can also use a thin dress sock if the holster really needs to be stretched.

    -- hint, it is easier to stretch a holster than it is to properly shrink it, so start of thinking 'thin' and try 1 bag... if that does not produce the desired results, try 2 bags.

    The above is fairly the normal procedure for stretching gun holster... check www.kramerleather.com/ for details... or search www.thehighroad.org or search www.glocktalk.com I'd think it would work well for what you want to do too.

    [/ QUOTE ] Data, you hit the nail on the head.

  9. #9
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    I've successfully used neatsfoot oil to keep my leather bike seats water resistant and somewhat compliant without getting too soft. I applied a generous amount to both sides and let them sit for a day. Try the plastic bag around your light and put it into a holster soaked with neatsfoot oil.

  10. #10
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    [ QUOTE ]
    jayflash said:
    I've successfully used neatsfoot oil to keep my leather bike seats water resistant and somewhat compliant without getting too soft. I applied a generous amount to both sides and let them sit for a day. Try the plastic bag around your light and put it into a holster soaked with neatsfoot oil.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    [img]/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thumbsup.gif[/img] For your idea.

    Mike

  11. #11

    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    In my experience, Neetsfoot oil can encourage mold to grow if it is used on vegetable tanned leather. It can also soften and stretch the leather too much so I would use it sparingly. I haven't as much experience using it on chrome tanned leather.

    Shoe stores sell a product called "Shoe Stretch" that you spritz on tight spots in leather shoes before wearing to help stretch them out. It is basicly alcohol and I have successfully used rubbing alcohol to help stretch and form leather. It evaporates out faster than water and doesn't leave the leather stiff and damaged as water does. YMMV

  12. #12

    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    For 'hard formed' leather (moulded/rigid) most makers discourage the use of oil based products... because it WILL soften the leather, and defeat the purpose of hard moulding the leather.

    Instead many, like the folks at Kramer, recommend the use of something like "Kiwi Neutral Paste Wax".

    Such a product will protect from water damage w/o soaking into the leather and ruining the hard molded shape (it also does not ruin the positive retention of a hard moulded holster).

    Remember, for the most part it is the rigidness of a good leather holster that creates a 'positive' grip on the flashlight/firearm... if the leather becomes soft, it will not retain the item as well (think of 'floppy' kydex... wouldn't work so well huh).

  13. #13
    Enlightened
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    Default Re: Stretching Leather Holsters

    I have heard good things about Leather Lightning from Mitch Rosen.

    http://www.mitchrosen.com/product_li...ellaneous.html

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