Recently I did a repair on a antique blackjack that had a broken wrist loop. Here’s how it looked initially:
Here’s a slightly closer up of the blackjack itself:
First thing I had to do was undo the knot:
Under the wrist loop there weren’t really any surprises, initially. What I did find interesting under the string was that the wrist loop was tacked to the spring foundation of the blackjack. It was just nailed inbetween the coils of the springs. I would have figured the texture of the spring and the binding with string would have held it fairly securely. Then thinking about this probably hanging from a policeman’s wrist or belt while they are running around all day those little tacks probably gave a bit of extra security!
Once the spring was taken off what was left was the bare spring foundation.
I’ll post some pictures of the finished repair soon.
Here’s a fairly simple little project that I made the other day:
This is a 4 plait dog lead with a 10 plait wrist loop. What’s fun about making these lower plait count dog leads is that they are simple…until you split the strands for the wrist loop and then you’ve got a slightly more challenging project!
A couple of weeks ago I had a dog lead sent to me for repair and I’ve finally gotten caught up on everything and this was the last project to finish! It had gotten chewed up and the wrist loop was in bad shape:
The first thing I had to do was remove the knot at the wrist loop and see how many of the 8 strands were actually broken:
I was hoping it miraculously was only three of them. However once I got the wrist loop unplaited I discovered it was six of the 8 strands. So not the worst case scenario which would have been all eight strands, but it was pretty close.
The next step was to unbraid the lead so that I could add lace in and have it anchored in place by plaiting once I rebraided it.
I didn’t add all six strands at one spot, that would have created a huge lump in the dog lead. What I did was thin down the ends of the new lace with by bench splitter and gradually add them in. Here are the first two being added in:
Once all six strands were added and secured I changed the plaiting from a round pattern to a flat pattern for the wrist loop. After securing the wrist loop I tied the first part of the knot:
And added in the red interweave:
And now it’s ready to head back to its owner!
I think given the circumstances it turned out pretty well and wasn’t too crazy of a repair!
When making a whips from kangaroo you end up with leftover centers of whips. Some of these are large enough to be parts of other whips and some are not. Some end up lace for knots, or small little projects. I took two centers that I had left and made a 4 plait dog lead:
One of the little bits of flair that I add to these 4 plait dog leads is giving them a higher plait count wrist loop. This particular one has a 10 plait wrist loop. These are simple to make I simply split the 4 strands for the body of the leash in half to give me 8 strands. Add those 8 strands to the two strands that are the core and you’ve got an 10 plait wrist loop!
This dog lead is available for sale on my IN STOCK dog leads page.
Currently I’m working on an Indiana Jones style bullwhip built with David Morgan’s construction. You can find out more about David’s method in his book Whips and Whip Making.
There are some differences between how they make bullwhips at David Morgan and how I normally make mine. For example the lead load is one of the first thing they do at David Morgan and it’s one of the last things that I do. Neither way is right or wrong, just how we do it.
Here’s the bullwhip with both bellies finished:
And here’s the bullwhip as it is currently:
It still need to have the wrist loop added:
The knots need to be tied and a few finishing touches. So far I’m happy with how this has turned out! Next up I’ll be finishing up a 16 plait riding crop that I started a while ago.
Yesterday I cut out a batch of falls and got them soaking in grease:
I also finished plaiting two Deluxe Beginners Bullwhips and one short snake whips.
I made the bullwhips with the same knots and general look as David Morgan’s iconic bullwhip that was used by Indiana Jones. The two main differences is that these are 4 plait cow instead of 12 plait kangaroo and these have four plait wrist loops instead of six plait wrist loops.
I still need to roll these bullwhips…and they are available on my IN STOCK WHIPS page.
The short snake whip isn’t for sale, it’s for a friend of mine.
Yesterday in addition to finishing up plaiting projects that I had started a while ago, I also added a wrist loop to the snake whip that I made a couple of days ago. It’s owner had emailed me and asked if I could add it.
Here’s the whip before the wrist loop was added:
So I had to take off the turkshead and braid a wrist loop:
Then I had to attach the wrist loop and redo the turks head:
When adding this wrist loop I couldn’t have reused the turkshead’s lace for the same knot again because once they are tied and trimmed I’d have a very difficult time retying it and due to the added bulk (not much, but enough) of the wrist loop the lace probably wouldn’t fit. So I cut the lace down the middle to make two thin strands, then folded each in the middle and flat braided them to make the wrist loop. Finally I cut a new piece of lace for the turkshead knot.
Today I’ve got a busy performing schedule so I probably wont’ get any plaiting in.
Here’s a few pictures of the riding crop after I tied two new knots and put a new wrist loop on it:
I haven’t re-dyed it yet…I’m not sure if I will. I think the parts were the old dye have worn off give it character!
Right now I’m working on a 9 foot 12 plait kangaroo bullwhip. I’m making this bullwhip with the Indiana Jones (David Morgan) look.
I’m using a 75 dm kangaroo hide that I got from Paul Nolan:
To use up some of the “ears” at the top of the hide, I cut the 6 plait wrist loop from up there:
Then I greased up the hide and cut out the two bellies and did the strand prep:
the handle on this bullwhip is going to have some taper to it. Here’s the inner belly’s yoke that’s cover the handle and you can see that the taper has begun.
Right now I have bothe bellies plaited (but no pictures). I’m hoping to have the final bolster cut out and attached sometime today. I don’t expect to get any work cutting out the overlay in today.
Lately I’ve been putting more thought into my wrist loops and because of that they are looking much better. I think there are a couple of things that are overlooked by beginners when they make wrist loops:
- Thickness of the strands: On a 6 plait wrist loop that’s normally used on an Indy Bullwhip you need the strands to be fairly thin.
- Length of the wristloop: I’ve notice that a lot of beginners wristloops aren’t very big. That would make it hard for someone with a thick hand to use it.
Until recently I’ve been cutting my wristloops freehand, but since making my strands thinner I switched over to using one of David Morgan’s lace cutters.
You can get them from David Morgan, they work great for cutting the fine strand of a wrist loop.