4 foot bullwhips

4 foot bullwhips

Right now I’m working on a pair of 4 foot 8 plait kangaroo bullwhips.  

 

bullwhip making and bull whips for sale

The picture above is of the plaited bellies of both bullwhips.  I’m getting the bellies braided soo tight and the core soo dense that you can hold them by the handle sideways and they will stick straight out!  

The more you think about what happens to a bullwhip as it get broken in and used, you will see how important it is to get a tightly braided whip.  Kangaroo is a stretchty leather and a whipmaker tries to get as much stretch out of the whip before plaiting it.  

All the lace prep and braiding will take a most of the stretch out of  the kangaroo lace by the time the whip is finished.  But over time and use the whip’s strands will stretch.  So if you start with a bullwhip that loosely briaded the stretch overtime will make the whip limp and lifeless.  But a whip that’s very tightly braided at the beginning after it’s broken in will still be firm and lively. 

It’s also this stretching action that will make a “matched pair” of bullwhips unmatched with time.  Since no two pieces of kangaroo (or cowhide) are exactly the same they will break in differently.  One strand could stretch (break in) differently than the one cut right next to it and when you are dealing with a pair of whips from two different hides you will definately have two different whips.  also if i you always use the same whip for  your right and left hand, then you will throw the whips differently and they will break in differently. 

In my opinion a pair of bullwhips should simply be made off the same pattern so the weight is about the same in the whip.

Louie

http://bullwhips.org

4 Foot Bullwhip Pair Progress…

4 Foot Bullwhip Pair Progress…

I wasn’t going to do much plaiting last night, I hurt my chest sledding with my daughter in the snow (I’m an old man!), but I ended up with a house full of execpted, but welcome visitors.  Two of my sisiters and brother from New York were passing through Seattle to visit our dad in Alaska, but their flight got cancelled.  So I picked them up and when I got them home they proptly fell asleep (they’d been traveling  for 20 hours!).

So to not keep them up I went into my office and did a bit of work on the 4 foot bullwhips.  I’m about 3 feet into one of them:

 

12 plait bull whip

While working on this bullwhip at one point I noticed a gap in the plaiting on the backside of the whip.  I was able to diagnose the problem and replait it correctly (I was very proud of myself!).  I had read somewhere that when making whips you make sure the top half looks good and the bottom half will fix itself.  I don’t  agree with that.  If you notice a problem on the underside of the bullwhip, you need to correct it, or at least try to figure out why it’s doing whatever it is.

Louie

http://bullwhips.org