Preserving leather cases and bellows

Discussion in 'Camera Building, Repairs & Modification' started by pentaxpete, Sep 11, 2013.

  1. pentaxpete

    pentaxpete Subscriber

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    Any members with information on what to put on the brown leather camera cases and black leather bellows to preserve them ? I have some 'Neatsfoot Oil' I was given and have rubbed a small amount onto a couple of camera cases and lens cases with a kitchen towel tissue and it seems to do it some good . I have some classic 1950's bellows folders and there are no holes so I want to lubricate the leather of the bellows.
     
  2. benjiboy

    benjiboy Subscriber

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    The traditional thing to keep leather bellows soft is bees wax, very few camera/lens cases are actually real leather mostly some sort of faux or reconstituted leather or compressed material with leather look surface .
     
  3. Tom1956

    Tom1956 Inactive

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    Hope that neatsfoot oil doesn't dissolve the glue at the bellows seam.
     
  4. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Member

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    Neatsfoot oil comes from the hooves of calves and is recommended by many for leather, but apply it sparingly.
    Pledge Natural Beauty, the furniture polish in the yellow aerosol can, contains beeswax and lemon oil. Both are good for leather and naugahyde used on camera and cases. Spray it on, rub it in, wipe off the excess. been using it for years.
     
  5. Ian Grant

    Ian Grant Subscriber

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    Adding to Ben's comments it's usually the tread that's used for the stitching that goes first, also the strap. I've a few to repair this Autumn/Winter and havebought the tools.

    Ian
     
  6. pentaxpete

    pentaxpete Subscriber

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    Many thanks for all the replies -- you even know from where 'Neatsfoot Oil' comes !
     
  7. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    A 'nota bene' - there is "pure Neat's foot oil" and there is "Neat's foot oil compound". The compound can dissolve glues, although it never has for me; the pure article will not. Another good product is Lexol, but beware that it is an emulsion and if applied generously could dissolve water-soluble glue.
     
  8. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    I've been using it since 1988 on the original-from-1950 bellows an my Deardorff V8, which are made of sheepskin, and since 1987 on the bellows of my Linhof STIV from 1960. It has yet to dissolve anything and both bellows are supple and light tight. I use Nye pure Neat's Foot oil.
     
  9. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Member

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    I googled it a while back, bought a bottle at Tandy Leather and used a little on a vintage Graflex SLR.
     
  10. pentaxpete

    pentaxpete Subscriber

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    My plastic bottle says it was bought in a 'saddlery'shop and is 'Gold Label' Neatsfoot Oil,specially blended for leather articles .also suitable for use as a Massage Oil ---
     
  11. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    If it's "specially blended", it's not pure Neat's foot oil.
     
  12. shutterfinger

    shutterfinger Member

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  13. pentaxpete

    pentaxpete Subscriber

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    Thanks for that 'Link' == I have sent them an e-mail query.
    Peter
     
  14. mgb74

    mgb74 Subscriber

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    I use Neatsfoot Oil on various leather items, but in your case I'd look into the products used to treat leather book bindings. I think many/most are beeswax based (as benjiboy suggested). Surely no lack of old, leather-bound books in your part of the world.
     
  15. pentaxpete

    pentaxpete Subscriber

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    Dear Peter,



    We have been selling our Neatsfoot Oil for the last 40 years without any complaints. We have always made it blended because dealing with pure Neatsfoot can be a nightmare. It can turn very solid in cooler temperatures and this makes it difficult to soak reins etc in. We have used the blended Neatsfoot in our own extensive livery yard and never had a problem with dissolved stitching. For preserving leather, we could think of no better product.



    We hope that this information helps



    Kind Regards



    R P Newsholme
     
  16. E. von Hoegh

    E. von Hoegh Member

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    I've heard that Neat'sfoot rots threads, but cannot see how or why. I think that's an urban legend, like the "Ronsonol is good for shutters" one.
    Just because it's a blend doesn't mean it's bad (depending on what it's blended with). I had some that I swear was blended with kerosene.