Decorated cuffs

Posted in Tips & Tricks on October 19th, 2008 by The Cyberwolfe

Here’s the latest finished project, a pair of fancy-decorated cuffs:

These are the 5″ cuffs with buckles. They cover about half of your forearm (as seen in the last post). For the buckles and straps, I went with a slot-mount this time instead of the surface-mount method of the bracers seen previously. This allowed me to minimize the surface area required for them, as well as simplifying the construction process. I did, however have to re-create my construction template for the buckles from scratch, so once again one side fits better then the other. One of these days I’ll get it right.

For the finish, I used a Fiebing’s oil dye, followed by Angelus leather paint and topped off with Fiebing’s Tan-Kote. This design would probably look good in a nice brown, and leaving the carved design un-dyed like I did in the last pouch project should work out pretty well. I was making this pair for myself, though, and my current wardrobe is all black.

One truly nice point of this build was using leather from a full side instead of a belly cut. Bellies are great for prototypes and one-off designs, but for your best work use the best leather. Even then, I skimped a bit and used a “tannery run” grade here instead of an “A” grade leather. The main difference you will find between the two from what I could see at the leather supply store is that TR-grade doesn’t have as even of a surface color as A-grade. If you plan on dying or painting the finished product, however, the leather itself is the same quality.