Blades and Bushlore

Bushlore Topics => DIY and Homemade Gear => Topic started by: NMTracker on December 08, 2012, 08:00:49 PM

Title: Leather Scabbard Thoughts
Post by: NMTracker on December 08, 2012, 08:00:49 PM
For some time now I have been pondering how to go about building a leather scabbard for my H&R shotgun and rifles. My leather skills are pretty amateur but should be sufficient to at least get the job done - whether the finished product will be "pretty" or not is less certain :)
But I've never undertaken a leather project this large. My attempts have been small items like sheaths, shell holders, buttstock covers. Have any of you all ever made one before? What weight leather did you go with? Any particular lessons learned? I'll be going for a simple design, somewhat similar (but less intricate) to the one below, but I am thinking with eyelets every 6 inches or so, then double stitched. How would I wet form it to the gun? A lot of questions, I know, but I'd be appreciative of any wisdom before I start this!

Title: Re: Leather Scabbard Thoughts
Post by: PetrifiedWood on December 08, 2012, 08:25:39 PM
Well for starters I would look for a pattern pack from Tandy. I believe they have one for rifle scabbards but not sure if it is discontinued or still in production. But you should be able to find one somewhere. If it is going to be a first, then having the guidance the pattern pack would provide will be save you from wasting a lot of leather. Another thing to consider is the leather itself. That is going to require a very large piece of leather to begin with. And I also think it should be lined with another layer of thinner material that is resistant to dirt embedding so the gun doesn't get a lot of finish wear. Something similar to the stuff they use for wallet liners might be good.
Title: Re: Leather Scabbard Thoughts
Post by: Saintnick001 on December 08, 2012, 10:08:44 PM
That one in the picture just looks like a really big knife sheath. It'd be the same thing only on a much, much larger scale. I'd guess it'd take a whole side ($$$) and a lot of thread to get that done. Maybe 7-8oz? Maybe heavier.
The wet molding would be fairly easy. Take a damp sponge and lightly wet both sides. I'd lightly cover the gun in saranwrap. Fold the leather over and just start pushing. Keep molding with your fingers until is somewhat dry. You'll want to be careful and take any rings off your fingers. I usually clip my nails before doing anything like that too. Leather is very easily marred when it's wet. That's also how you tool patterns in leather.
Title: Re: Leather Scabbard Thoughts
Post by: Dano on December 08, 2012, 11:08:28 PM
I would make it hold the stock on one side, then make a barrel tube on the other large enough for the largest barrel.  I really like PW's liner idea.  Then fold it together and secure it with a couple buckles, and add a fold over cover like a Cavalry holster.  You could add a couple (4) D-rings to secure it to a pack, and make a couple shoulder straps to carry it separate.

That is gonna be a lot of leather.  I wonder if an inner layer of suede with the material PW mentioned on the gun side would offer enough protection and allow you to use 7-9 or 10 ounce leather...