Homemade dubbin type thingy

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Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby Uller » Mon Nov 19, 2012 2:46 pm

I want to make some sort of dubbin or leather treatment/preserver for my shoes and boots - recipes I've found so far contain tallow. As a recent vegetarian, I don't want to use that so am looking for something else - any ideas?

And before anyone points out that vegetarians shouldn't wear leather, I'm not going to buy leather any more, hence wanting to make what I bought before going veggie last as long as possible!
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby oldfella » Mon Nov 19, 2012 3:00 pm

There is a product which is made from tree bark. Thats all I know about the subject but may be worth a Google.
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby diggernotdreamer » Mon Nov 19, 2012 6:42 pm

vegetarian shoes have vegetable dubbin for 1.95
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby Crickleymal » Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:32 pm

Just to be awkward, surely as a vegetarian you shouldn't be wearing leather shoes? :icon_smile:
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby marshlander » Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:36 pm

Found the following article at http://www.outdoorsmagic.com/gear-featu ... s/496.html - would appear dubbin has fallen out of favour.

Grangers g wax says it's beeswax based and this ehow item suggests beeswax alone can do the job. http://www.ehow.com/how_2070133_waterproof-boots.html


Outdoors magic article;-

After The Walk

First step is to clean off any mud or debris using cold water and possibly a sponge. Neglect this and minute particles of dirt can penetrate the leather causing damage and wear, same with the laces, which you should remove and rinse.

Don't forget the inside of the boot, remove loose dirt and occasionally rinse them out too. The salt contained in perspiration can penetrate leather uppers and damage them.

Drying

If your boots are damp then remove the insoles and leave them to dry at room temperature. Don't stand them by radiators, put them in the airing cupboard or microwave them, you'll dry out the leather and damage it, at worst it'll crack and be ruined.

If the inners are damp - and modern lining materials are designed to suck up water, so check carefully - use the old trick of stuffing them with newspaper. Leave the paper for five minutes then remove and repeat until the paper's coming out dry. This will remove excess water. Never leave the newspaper in the boot while it dries. You need to get air to the interior.

Proofing

Boots generally come with some form of water repellancy, either a spray-type treatment or as part of the tanning process, however this will wear off with use - often after only a few days walking - and needs to be replaced both to keep your feet dry and protect the leather from damage.

There are plenty of treatments around, some boot makers recommend a certain brand, but the two products we'd suggest come from Nikwax and Grangers. You should make your choice according to the material of your boots.

With conventional Nikwax or Graingers G-Wax, you need to wait until the leather's dry before applying the wax. Use your fingers to warm and melt it, then massage it into the boot uppers. Don't forget the tongue and the areas around hooks and eyelets, rub well into the seams.

Nikwax also makes a range of Aqueoous products which can be applied when the leather is still damp, which means you can do the whole cleaning and reproofing gig in one, then move onto tea and cakes - great stuff.

Avoid Dubbin and other oil-based treatments should be avoided as they can damage stitching and soften the leather.

Conventional Leather

Use one of the wax-based treatments, following the manufacturer's instructions.

Nubuck/Suede

Nubuck, despite looking like suede. is actually a reversed-type leather, so the smooth bit is hidden on the inside. You can use conventional wax, but this will smooth down the nap of the leather giving it a smooth, waxy appearance. It won't damage the performance, but if you want to retain the nubuck look, you need to use a specialist nubuck treatment, either Grangers Nubuck Conditioner or Nikwax's Nubuck and Suede.

Both these proof and condition the material, but don't alter the appearance. You can raise the nap using a suede brush.

Fabric

Most fabric boots actually incorporate a fair amount of leather, usually suede, and a waterproof / breathable lining. Either Nikwax Fabric and Leather or Graningers G-Sport should see you right with these. Alternatively, and this is unendorsed by anyone, simply empty a can of Scotchguard silicone based repellant on the boots and watch the water roll off next time out.

And When It All Goes Horribly Wrong...

Nikwax produce a liquid conditioner claimed to restore the suppleness of dried out leather and soften new boots slightly. Does it work? We don't know having smugly followed the instructions above to the letter for years...
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby marshlander » Mon Nov 19, 2012 10:24 pm

Crickleymal, it's not as black and white as that. I became a strict veggie at the age of 12 and wouldn't touch leather and so on.

The leather trade is not just a byproduct of the meat industry - the hide can be 10% of the value of the carcass. Making leather uses huge quantities of water and the chemicals involved pollute the rivers of India (and no doubt elsewhere) where much of our leather is processed. Needless to say much of the cattle have come from beasts that have not had the benefit of our welfare standards - I've read ghastly accounts which I won't repeat here. So in reality nobody who cares about animal welfare or the environment should wear leather? Then there's the argument about milk - meat eaters should support British pink veal but many don't.

I think if you closely examine the stated beliefs of almost everyone you can find moral inconsistencies.

Over the years I have had to accept that the wide fitting shoes I need and that I can afford are either leather or plastic - which is least worse?

Being a bit of a hypocrite doesn't make me a bad person. It just makes me a person, full stop.

Rant over.

Don't beat yourself up about it Uller, you're doing your best!
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby Skippy » Tue Nov 20, 2012 9:14 am

There was a old "trick" used by soldiers in the past and that was to fill the boots with urine and let them soak for a few days to protect the leather (I wouldn't try this on plastic mind). Completely vegatarian but up to you if you want to try it out.Evidently goat urine is said to be better than human by some although a tad more difficult to collect I would say.


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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby Crickleymal » Tue Nov 20, 2012 9:31 am

marshlander wrote:Crickleymal, it's not as black and white as that. I became a strict veggie at the age of 12 and wouldn't touch leather and so on.
I think if you closely examine the stated beliefs of almost everyone you can find moral inconsistencies.

Over the years I have had to accept that the wide fitting shoes I need and that I can afford are either leather or plastic - which is least worse?

Being a bit of a hypocrite doesn't make me a bad person. It just makes me a person, full stop.

I know, that's why I put the smilie in. I was just trying to point out the inconsistency between wearing leather shoes and wanting vegetarian dubbin.
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby Uller » Tue Nov 20, 2012 10:37 am

The inconsistency is down to timing - I only became vegetarian about 18 months ago. Now that I've made that decision, I won't be buying new leather (or anything containing tallow), but I also didn't want to throw out any leather items that I already owned because a) it is wasteful and expensive and b) seems even more hypocritical to not use something that the animal has already died for than it does to use it. Not everyone will agree with my logic, but that is up to them - I'm happy with my decision!

For future purchases, I'm also not too concerned about the materials that vegetarian shoes are made out of, despite the criticisms about them being made from oil-based materials - most people who criticise will be using plastics in hundreds of different ways in their own homes and I would rather use my plastic 'allowance' on something like a pair of shoes and concentrate on reducing other forms of plastic - packaging, food containers etc etc.

Again, not everyone will agree, but everyone has to decide what matters to them and make their decisions on that basis.
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Re: Homemade dubbin type thingy

Postby Zech » Tue Nov 20, 2012 11:47 am

marshlander wrote:Avoid Dubbin and other oil-based treatments should be avoided as they can damage stitching and soften the leather.

I thought that keeping leather soft and supple was the whole point of dubbin :scratch:
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