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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 1:16 pm 
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Until now, I've been sending off my finished pipes in cigar boxes with foam and cloth. While they make nice presentation cases, I don't find them as practical as a bag for travel, and storing them can be a challenge as well.

I feel it is important for the first impression a customer has with your pipes to be a positive one. A cheap bag with a beautiful pipe makes the pipe look cheap. But a nice pipe bag can make the customer feel that his money was well-spent.

Finding top-notch leather bags is a quest I've given up on. You can get decent quality ones, but the prices are fairly high, and they may not be exactly what you want.

So here's the question. Does anyone have any particular recommendations about:

A. Sources for high quality leather to make the bags from, but not spend a fortune on.
or
B. Sewing machines required to do the kind of leatherwork you would make pipe bags with.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 2:05 pm 
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Give Bob Oswald a call. He gives volume discounts and the bags are great. He sells his bag for 8" pipes to pipemakers for something like $7 per bag. He has quite a few different colors to choose from and the quality is unmatched for the price.

Here's a link to his website.

http://www.whitewoodleather.com/

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 4:37 pm 
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I'll second the Bob Oswald recommendation. His bags are extremely durable and well made. I own a few Russ Cook pipes, and all of his pipes come with a leather bag from Bob. A handmade bag is nice, but nothing beats leather.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 4:55 pm 
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Just to be clear, I'm looking at making my own bags out of leather, not buying bags that are already made. I'd like my bags to be different than what others are doing. Not that buying bags from Bob is a bad idea. I'm sure his bags are good.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 5:41 pm 
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Unlike some people I ACTUALLY READ your OP. However, I have looked at the cost of a nice leather sewing machine and thin weight leather and decided for the expense you can't beat Bob's prices. Especially since the only thing I would be doing is making about 75 pipe bags a year.

If you call Bob and tell him what you want to do he would probably make it no problem. Just sayin'

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 5:43 pm 
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But it is really annoying when you ask a very specific question and some asshole just gives some completely random fucking answer....isn't it??? :twisted:

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 6:06 pm 
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I spent quite a bit of time pouring over the leatherworking forums when I decided I needed to make my own bags. The consensus was that you really need to get a walking-foot machine for leather work. More research cemented my decision to get the Consew 206RB-5. It's not cheap, but is considered by many to be the least you'll need as a dependable leather sewing machine. I love mine, it's quite impressive, weighs a ton, and it's a little intimidating to use until you get use to it! I'll let you play around with it some when you come down. You'll need to order the machine with the table and motor as a package.

As for leather itself, well, I'm no expert. I get the RealLeather Deer Tan from Hobby Lobby. With the always available 40% off coupon, I spend about $20 for enough to make about five bags (depending on the cut and any natural flaws in the leather). There's always Tandy Leather, but their prices are a little much for me to spend in one go, and I used to have a link for another site that looked promising, but I seemed to have lost it in my long list of bookmarks. If I find it, I'll let you know!

Image

Image

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 7:12 pm 
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WCannoy wrote:
...I used to have a link for another site that looked promising, but I seemed to have lost it in my long list of bookmarks. If I find it, I'll let you know!


Maybe these guys?

http://springfieldleather.com/

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 7:26 pm 
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LatakiaLover wrote:
WCannoy wrote:
...I used to have a link for another site that looked promising, but I seemed to have lost it in my long list of bookmarks. If I find it, I'll let you know!


Maybe these guys?

http://springfieldleather.com/


Seems like those guys are worth looking in to, but not the link I had in mind. I have since found the one I was looking for here: http://www.macphersonleather.com/deerskin.htm

I'll have to take some time and compare the two. I really like the photos on the macpherson site...

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 7:50 pm 
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LatakiaLover wrote:
WCannoy wrote:
...I used to have a link for another site that looked promising, but I seemed to have lost it in my long list of bookmarks. If I find it, I'll let you know!


Maybe these guys?

http://springfieldleather.com/



Springfield Leather makes my bags for me and I couldn't be happier with them. Deer tan cowhide outer, pig suede interior and laser engraving for $13. It's $7 without the engraving. I need to have a stamp or brand or whatever it is you use made and see about doing the logo myself. Regardless, they do a nice job and usually fill my order in a few days. They sell sewing machines and all the pertinent equipment there as well, but I'll stick to letting the pros do it.

Can't find a picture of just a bag.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 10:13 pm 
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My wife got a Consew machine very similar to, if not the same as, Walt's. It will sew the hell out of thick, heavy, difficult to work with materials and is very well made. I will say, though, that if all you're going to be making with it is pipe socks it's pretty darn pricey. I don't think any customers care enough about pipe socks to buy a tool that expensive for just that purpose. I don't know about everybody else, but I've never bought a pipe because of it's packaging. If you're going to sew lots of other stuff, too, it's a damn nice machine and well worth the cost. There are lots of other machines but you'll likely end up paying around the same. Used machines are certainly an option, and you might find a good deal.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 07, 2015 11:22 pm 
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mredmond wrote:
if all you're going to be making with it is pipe socks it's pretty darn pricey.


Wut...? I've made other things with it :D

Image

Image

These were Christmas presents though... I do not intend to go into the handmade stuffed animals business!

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 12:52 am 
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Walt, those certainly make the expense worthwhile. : ) Nice work!

I think it's important to consider cost when delving into "side projects" but I also think it's always better to buy the best quality tools one can afford. I've learned both the hard way.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 8:42 am 
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You don't have to use leather you know ;)

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 10:06 am 
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I've been looking into this too and, as luck would have it, my mother-in-law is a professional seamstress and repairs and restores sewing machines. Been doing it for decades.

I asked her about this and she sent me a slew of info, the jist of which is this: for our purposes, we probably want a Singer or Singer clone from the 1950s or '60s. I've found several in my area for less than $150. The recommendation that Walt made looks like the best of the best, so if that's what you want, I say go for it. I have a hard time justifying a machine like that when I only plan to make pipe socks and have no intention of making gun holsters, riding saddles, or stuffed animals. :P

I've been looking for nice leather at a decent price as well and found these guys: http://justleather.com/catalog/index.ph ... =1&sort=2d

Haven't ordered yet but their most expensive option looks like it'd put a standard pipe bag at around $2 a pop.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 10:15 am 
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PS - I found this handy: https://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en- ... guide.aspx

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 10:15 am 
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David, are those old treadle machines, or just the "built like a tank" ones that they don't make anymore?

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 3:51 pm 
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scotties22 wrote:
David, are those old treadle machines, or just the "built like a tank" ones that they don't make anymore?


She recommended the old foot powered ones above all other Singer type machines. I'm looking at the ones that are "built like a tank" and are electric powered. According to her, they'll do a great job.

I've also been looking at Singer clones from the '50s and '60s which are apparently great machines as well. This video convinced me that they're all you need to start sewing basic leather stuff. She sews a few layers of leather at around 8 mins.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 08, 2015 4:32 pm 
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Yeah, the old treadle machines will sew just about anything you can fit it them. I have looked at them more than once on craigslist. If I had room I would already have one.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2015 9:01 pm 
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My wife is damn good with a sewing machine, so I just had her make some out of some good quality black flannel. She did a couple before we settled on a good size and construction, then she just sat down and made like 30 in about an hour.

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