Kangaroo, Water and Concrete…

Kangaroo, Water and Concrete…

There’s a strange myth that kangaroo leather is very delicate and if it gets wet it will immediately be ruined.  In my opinion this is 100% not true…provided you properly take care of your whip.  Water itself is not harmful to your whip.  In fact plaiting soap is usually half water and your whip gets coated in this while it’s being made.

In regards to water after your whip gets wet (like if you use it in the rain) you want to dry it off and possibly give it a hit of leather dressing.  Mainly this is to combat mold, the water itself in reasonable amounts won’t do anything to the leather.  Now if you were to soak your whip in a bath tub for two weeks that’s a different story.

The other thing is people think they need to use a their whip only on a patch of grass with no debris whatsoever.  While that’s the ideal situation in the real world that’s almost never the case.  My leisure whip cracking happens at a local park and while it’s fairly clear there are sometimes small rocks twigs etc.  If you crack your whips into the ground onto these you are risking damaging the strands of your whip.  However keep in mind that pretty much every crack when properly executed happens in the air (except for things like the snake killer).

As a general rule concrete or gravel isn’t the best surface to crack your bullwhip on because it’s abrasive.  Keep in mind that any abrasive surface isn’t good to crack a whip of any material on (kangaroo, cow, nylon) and that over time it will wear it a lot faster than if you only crack on a gym floor.  Some materials like nylon handle it a bit better than leather, but it’s still going to wear it out.

Here’s one of my favorite whip crackers Chris Camp cracking his whip on WET CONCRETE:

Should your whip last a lifetime?   With proper care the answer is YES…but then so should a car.   Keep in mind that no one drives their car in ideal situations, you could park your car in climate controlled garage or you could actually use it.  Sure maybe you’ll have to get a new whip every now and then, but isn’t new whip day fun, and you need at least a few of those during your life time!

So you need to decide what you want a whip for, hang on your wall to look at forever or to actually go out and use.  If you pic the latter use it and  have fun…just properly maintain it and try your best to minimize using it on abrasive surfaces.

Louie
http://bullwhips.org 

Pair of Bullwhips…

Pair of Bullwhips…

The pair of bullwhips that I’ve been working on are ready for their overlays!  Here’s the plaited bellies:

bullwhip

and then here’s the final bolster:

bullwhip matched pair

I’ve already cut out the overlays and so today I’ll at least do the strand prep and probably find some time to get some plaiting in as well.

Louie
http://bullwhips.org 

Signal Whip and Pair of Bullwhips

Signal Whip and Pair of Bullwhips

My performing schedule is finally slowing down and I’m getting more whip making time in. I just finished making a three foot eight plait signal whip:

signal whip

This whip is fairly skinny compared to how thick a four foot signal whip would be.  I don’t make a lot of 3 foot signal whips, so this was a fun little project for me.  I’ll have this listed on my IN STOCK whips page shortly.

My currently project is a pair of five foot bullwhips.  For fun I’m making these for as a matched pair instead of simply two bullwhips.   Right now I have the cores cut out and they have grease soaking in:

bullwhips matched pair

Hopefully I’ll have time to get these completed this week.

Louie
http://bullwhips.org

Finished Ostrich Handle Bullwhip Pics!

Finished Ostrich Handle Bullwhip Pics!

This has taken me way to long to finish work on, but I think it turned out pretty cool looking!  Here’s the finished 6 foot bullwhip with ostrich leg handle and 12 plait kangaroo lash:

I gave this bullwhip  a couple of cracks and it’s got a nice crack to it!

Also if you look at the cracker on this bullwhip this is what a cracker that’s only been cracked two times should look like, not like the one on the whip that I reference in this post: http://bullwhips.org/?p=5703

Louie
http://bullwhips.org 

Bullwhip Buyers Beware!

Bullwhip Buyers Beware!

Every now and then I do a quick search on Ebay to see what whips are being sold and one caught my eye a few minutes ago.  Not because it’s an excellent deal, but how uneducated the seller is!  There is so much wrong with this listing, it’s making my head spin!

Does the seller not know who they bought it from?  I’m assuming it’s the original buyer because they are saying it’s only been cracked twice.  If they got it second hand you really couldn’t say that.

Ok, first here’s a link to the listing:  http://www.ebay.com/itm/10-12-Plait-Australian-Kangaroo-Hide-Bullwhip-Beautiful-/271055846007

Take a look at the pictures on the listing, this is supposed to be a 12 plait 10 foot Terry Jacka bullwhip.  Here’s the description from the ebay listing:

YOU ARE BIDDING “THE AUSTRALIAN BULLWHIP BY TERRY JACKA”; A BEAUTFUL PRE-OWNED (LIKE NEW) 10 FOOT 12 PLAIT KANGAROO HIDE BROWN BULLWHIP.

Description:  This is a beautifully crafted 10 foot 12 plait Australian Bullwhip hand crafted by Terry Jacka.  Made from the finest kangaroo leather this is a true work of art and one of a kind item.  The crack is truly thunderous!!

Condition:  This whip has been excellently cared for and is like new.  I’ve only cracked it twice and it has been mostly displayed in a temperature cooled cabinet.  I still have regularly treated it with Pecard’s leather dressing; as recently as last month.  The fall is brand new.

I’ve included PICS that I personally took which are completely accurate. (NOTE: I increased the sharpness to deliver clear images.)

Normally if you were to buy this whip new it would cost $800.00 USD.  I am starting the listing at nearly half that cost.  Buyer assumes all costs for shipping and handling.

Alright, so here’s my little list of what’s wrong with this listing:

1.  It’s not a Terry Jacka Bullwhip, it’s from EM-Brands Bullwhips (Bernie Wojcicki)

2. It’s not LIKE NEW.  The seller claims it’s only been cracked twice, but recently put a new fall on it.  Why would you put a new fall on a whip that’s only been cracked twice?  Did they crack it once, then change the fall?

Also look at the knot in the cracker after only one or two cracks you should be able to get it out pretty easily.  The knot in the cracker makes it not like new because no reputable whip maker would ship a whip with a cracker with a knot in it.  When a cracker has a knot in it you should change it out just like a windshield of a car that has a crack.  You wouldn’t sell a car with broken windshield as new…and you shouldn’t sell a bullwhip with broken cracker as new either.

3. If it’s a Jacka it’s got the wrong cracker on it, unless Terry Jacka has recently changed this he ships with Polypro crackers.  So by it not having the original cracker it’s got a replacment part and not like new.

4.  The listing says it’s 12 plait, it’s 16 plait…count the strands, there are 4 going under each strand in the four seam part of the lash right after the handle.

5. The listing says this bullwhip new would be $800.  I just checked and a 10 foot bullwhip from EM Brand Whips is $590 for 12 plait or $680 for 16plait.  Either way it’s over $100 below the price the seller is saying it would cost new.

Wait, maybe the seller actually thinks it’s a Jacka, what are his prices for a new 10 foot bullwhip.  I thought of that and from Terry Jacka a 10 foot bullwhip is $600 for 12 plait and $650 for 16 plait, or $150 below what the seller thinks it would cost new.

###

OK those are my main issues with this bullwhip’s listing.  Now it’s not a bad bullwhip, but if someone were to try sell you a used VW Bug and tell you it’s a Porsche and tried to tell you that it was worth more than a new Porsche you’d probably stay away from the seller because the seller doesn’t know what they are talking about.  If they don’t know what make / model of what they have and they are the original owner how can you believe anything they tell you about condition?

Another thing is the seller took a lot of pictures and made sure to make sure they are clear pictures so the buyer knows what they are getting.  However there’s one thing they didn’t take a picture of, the piece of metal on the end of the handle of the whip.  Why wouldn’t you show that?  It’s a decorative piece that Bernie personally hand engraves and the ones that I’ve personally seen look really cool.   I also know that some of them say something like “handmade by Bernie Wojcicki for______” and a whip number.  I wonder if this one is simply decorated or has an engraving with Bernie’s name and the whip number?

All I can say is if you are going to buy or sell a whip do your research and know what you are buying or selling.   An honest description will sell a bullwhip much faster than a misleading one especially from a “known maker” and you’ll end up with the other person on the other end of the transaction much happier!

Louie
http://bullwhips.org 

Ostrich Leg Bullwhip Progress…

Ostrich Leg Bullwhip Progress…

I’ve made some progress on the bullwhip with the ostrich leg leather handle.  Yesterday I put the ostrich leg on it, built the knot foundations and tied the transition knot.

Bullwhip with ostrich leg handle
Bullwhip with ostrich leg handle

I really like the way this ostrich leg looks, the pattern on it looks pretty cool on a bullwhip.  Originally I was worried that this bullwhip was to slim for the width of the pattern on the ostrich leg, but I think the pattern to handle size ratio turned  out well.

All that’s left for this bullwhip is to tie the final knot and roll/shellac it.  Hopefully I’ll have time today to do that (but probably not).

I also made a couple more bullwhip belt hangers.

bullwhip belt holder
This are something that I really don’t enjoy making (like falls), but when I do make them I always do more than one at a time.  Make two isn’t much more effort than making one.

Finally here’s me on a local television show in Seattle promoting a fair that I was performing at a couple of weeks ago:

After the ostrich leg bullwhip is finished I plan on working on a few 5 foot 8 plait bullwhips that will be an “entry level” type bullwhips.  By doing them at five feet I can make them with only one belly which will reduce the amount of leather and at 8 plait that will cut down on time making them.  Those two factors together will hopefully put the whips into the price range of the beginning whip cracker who wants a good whip to learn on, but doesn’t want to spend a ton of money.

Louie
http://bullwhips.org

Finished Bullwhip Lash…

Finished Bullwhip Lash…

Yesterday I finished up the lash of the 6 foot bullwhip that will have the ostrich leg handle.

bull whip

I should be able to find some time today to put the ostrich leg on the handle.

Alex Green Tribute on Saw Dogs 

The other night I was flipping channels and saw a picture of Alex Green on a TV show so I stopped to watch it.  It was a show called Saw Dogs and they were making a tribute to Alex.  Here’s the promo for the series:

This particular episode is Saw Dogs Season One Episode Nine and I can’t find a full episode online (on a website that I’m comfortable going to) but it seems like it may replay again sometime so keep an eye out for it if you are an Alex Green fan.

Louie
http://bullwhips.org 

At The Fair…

At The Fair…

Sorry I haven’t posted much here this summer my performing schedule has been very busy.  It slows down a bit next week and hope to be back to posting on a more regular basis.  The fair I’m performing at this week had a display on turksheads:

turkshead

turkshead

turkshead

turkshead

There was an ipad case with some edge braiding:

Edge braided ipad case

And finally here are some lights that at least to my eye seem to be turkshead inspired:

turkshead

As for progress on the Ostrich handle bullwhip I’ve got all the insides of the whip finished and the overlay strands cut out and prepped for plaiting.  I should be able to get back to working on that whip on Tuesday!

Louie
http://bullwhips.org 

Whip Demo Pics

Whip Demo Pics

This weekend I had a great time in Idaho and  caught Joe Strain’s Whip / Gun / Knife demo.  Actually I got there late and only caught the tail end of the knife part, missed the gun part, but got to see the whole whip part!

Here’s the “photo dump” from the demo:

The conditions that Joe had to crack on weren’t the best, very uneven, rough ground, but he did a great job.  Here’s some video of some of the tricks he did:

Joe did a great job and it was a fun demo!

Louie
http://bullwhips.org