Questions and Answers . . . . . . . .
Due to the nature of a true custom leather belt business, people coming across our web site seem to have a lot of questions. This is certainly expected because there are so few leather shops actually doing what we do anymore. . . .
So in the course of our daily interaction with inquiries, into our products, we communicate with a lot of people. It occurred to us that it might be a really valuable thing to post some of these questions that seem to come up often and then provide our answer. We hope these are valuable to you as you consider a purchase of a custom leather belt with our company.
Do all your belts have a lining or is that a custom expense?
For instance: I am interested in a hand-tooled belt, buck-stiched, with my name on the back. Would that belt have a lining or is it just the one thickness of tooled leather?
The lined and stitched option is extra ($65.00) - yes. Some people add it for extra strength if they are historically hard on belts. We use 10 oz. veg tanned cowhide in all of our belts and that seems to be plenty for most people. Size is a big factor in this decision. If you are over a size 38" and you have a history of the belt bending badly in the area of the center keeper in the back, then I would highly recommend the lined and stitched option to you. If you are a 34" - 36" or less and your belts typically do not bend in the back - then you likely don't need it.
Buck stitching does not have a lining as a part of that feature - buck stitching is typically just an added decoration and has nothing to do with added strength.
I wear a Trophy buckle with my leather belts right now. If I add one of your 1" or 3/4" buckle sets to my custom belt order, do I need to do anything extra to make sure the size I give you is correct?
Really good question - The quick answer is yes, there is a big difference between the size of an average trophy buckle and a 1" or 3/4" buckle set. Most trophy style buckles will take up in the neighborhood of at least 4" of length in the overall size of the belt. If you plan to use the same buckle on your new belt that you have been using on your old belt - then no problem, the new belt will fit just the same as your old belt.
But the difference in size between a large trophy style buckle and a buckle set can be as much as 3" -
So here is what you do. Determine the amount of space your trophy buckle takes up in your belt by measuring from the hook that goes in the adjustment holes out to the loop where the leather fold of belt attaches. Then subtract about 1 1/2" from that amount for a 1" buckle set and 1" for a 3/4" buckle set. Let's say that turns out to be a difference of 2 1/2". So you would then add that 2 1/2" to the size that you determined by measuring your current belt. So if you measured your current belt with the trophy buckle on it and came out to be 36" by using our measuring system , then you would add the 2 1/2" difference to that for a new total of 38 1/2".
Your adjusted size for ordering a belt from us with let's say a 1" buckle set would be 38 1/2"
If you are planning to do the opposite - If the belt you are using to measure for size for us has a 1" or 3/4" buckle set on it now and you want to use a large trophy style buckle on your new belt you plan to order, just reverse the process described above. You will actually be subtracting the difference in the size of the buckles.
Hope all this makes sense . . . . but it is very important that you allow for a significant difference in the length of the buckles when changing from a very large buckle to a small buckle or visa-versa.
I like buck stitching a lot - can I also have a backer added with the buck stitching?
Installing buck stitching on a belt with a backer glued on is not impossible - but it is extremely difficult to accomplish using our methods. I am sure there are good craftsman out there that can do both but it is not
a fun job at all in our shop - for that reason, I will say that we will likely not do it. If we did we would have to charge too much money for the time and grief. We buck stitch by hand using one extremely long piece of
lace - feeding the end of the lace through the extra thickness of leather is a bear cat -
So the long answer is this . . . . we would greatly prefer that you choose buck stitching and / or looped lacing as a feature or . . . our lined and stitched option (installs a "backer") - and not both on a belt order.