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Thread: Oar leathers are slipping

  1. #1
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    Default Oar leathers are slipping

    The leathers on my newly built oars are slipping. I applied contact cement to them before sewing them up, but that bond has broken and the leather on one of them is slipping. The buttons are tight.

    I'm thinking of just putting a few tacks through them to hold them in place.

    What would you do?

    oar leathers.jpg

  2. #2
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    This issue comes down to brass tacks. Nice stitching job.

  3. #3
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    re glue them
    Most contact cement is not waterproof.
    I might be tempted to use the "flexible" West System, G-Flex, it is waterproof

    ("I" would not use tacks)

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    Epoxy them on , but forget to put the leather back on .
    silly things

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    If they are slipping enough for you to work them down the oar you can use something like the waterproof version of titebond, white glue and wiggle them back into place. I've done it and it works.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  6. #6
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoeyawl View Post
    re glue them
    Most contact cement is not waterproof.
    I might be tempted to use the "flexible" West System, G-Flex, it is waterproof

    ("I" would not use tacks)

    Try garden variety old school rubber cement.

    Easy to apply. Easy to remove. Unlike epoxy.
    You would not enjoy Nietzsche, sir. He is fundamentally unsound. P.G. Wodehouse (Carry On, Jeeves)

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    I'd take them off, rough up the finish beneath them with sandpaper(if not already done) and then slice off one line of holes to make the leathers smaller, repunch new holes, soak in warm water for a while, coat the insides with some sort of white glue and then restitch..nice and tight. I've never had them slip as when the leather shrinks it usually grabs the spars very well especially if the finish is roughed up and some glue applied(last time I used titebond 3 but I think I've used Elmers, or regular titebond. My buttons are glued on with wood glue too, no problems and no nails or tacks. I don't think you need to use any of the more extreme adhesives.
    Last edited by Toxophilite; 03-12-2023 at 10:51 AM.

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    It looks like you stitched them on dry and there's the problem. Ideally you cut the leathers such that when held on there's a nice even gap between the edges. It's not a straight line as the oars have a little taper there. Once the leather's right and you've made the holes, soak it in warm water and stitch tight. As it dries, the leather will then shrink a little and fit tight.

    Don't put in brads unless you want to give a rot site to the lovely oars.

    Glue won't last.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    I agree , that's why I suggested a line of holes gets trimmed off and re-punched. You need a 1/8 - 1/4" gap prior to stitching tight (post soaking in warm water). I use the glue as it doesn't hurt and likely helps a little, it also works well for the buttons.
    My leathers don't slip

  10. #10
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    I have never had a problem removing epoxy from a surface.
    Heat gun, scraper, gone...

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    I've seen lots of oars snap right at the spot where someone put a tack through the leather or button – don't do it.

    I agree with Ian – you didn't stretch your leather on tight enough. Soaking is worthwhile (but not strictly necessary), make sure you err on the side of cutting your leather too narrow, and really heave on your stitches. Personally, I think it's easier to get the required tension with a herringbone stitch instead of a baseball stitch.

    (In my opinion, if you aren't occasionally ruining a piece of leather by blowing out your stitch hole, you aren't heaving on your stitches hard enough.)

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    Thought I'd give a follow-up. I removed the leather, trimmed one edge, applied elmers glue and restitched it. We'll see how it does.

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    run a few drops of "thin" CA glue around the perimeter....don't go overbord with the glue! if the fit is really loose, go with medium CA or even thick

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    Did you soak them prior to restitching? rough up the finish beneath at all (lightly) ?
    It should be immediately evident once the leather dries if they're going to stay put or not.

    Quote Originally Posted by dalekidd View Post
    Thought I'd give a follow-up. I removed the leather, trimmed one edge, applied elmers glue and restitched it. We'll see how it does.

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    Quote Originally Posted by Toxophilite View Post
    Did you soak them prior to restitching? rough up the finish beneath at all (lightly) ?
    It should be immediately evident once the leather dries if they're going to stay put or not.
    Even if they are put on perfectly, wicked tight etc, when you get a decade of pulling on them if you have spruce oars you will compress the spruce under the leathers and things will slip. Here is where the glue really helps. Eventually this will be where the oar breaks.
    Ben Fuller
    Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Tipsy, Tippy, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity, Look Far, Flash and a quiver of other 'yaks.
    "Bound fast is boatless man."

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Oar leathers are slipping

    Be very sparing with tacks, they definitely weaken the oar. I used hot melt glue once when in a hurry, then stitched them, they never slipped.

    Ken

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