Currently I have a Red Latigo bullwhip in the works. This stuff is fairly thick at about 3.8 mm and very dense when compared to something like kip. Here’s the bullwhip I’m currently working on:
I made one whip where I only thinned down the leather near the point so that I could get a nice tight braid at the end. However for the whip that I’m working on now I thinned down the entire length of all the strands. I split them down to 3mm thick.
By thinning down the strands I’m able to get a tighter braid without killing my hands. The thinner strands bend a bit easier than the thicker, so I have to use less energy plaiting to get the whip braided to about the same tightness.
I don’t think the whip is losing any “toughness” because the strands are still 3mm thick! So far this bullwhip is turning out well, I should at the very least have the overlay finished today.