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Battling Bastard

Leather chin strap restoration

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Hi!

 

Can a leather chin strap from a helmet liner, that is already brittle and dry be restored? Should i deep it in oil?

 

What should I do at least to soften it. Thanks

 

post-166971-0-93743400-1494715377.jpg

 

 

 


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I'd leave it be. Oil will darken the leather and probably weaken it further. As a rule, I don't treat anything made of leather. The end result is rarely what you want it to be and usually the "restored" item is left ruined or looking messed with.

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I once had an almost mint Westinghouse parachutist liner where the only thing that kept it from being absolutely mint was the oily stain over the brim from whatever goo the previous owner put on the leather chinstrap to "preserve" it.

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Preserving almost never works in this hobby. Especially these leather chinstraps, if you are concerned about condition, there's plenty of people that don't mind the leather straps in this condition, best to just sell it as is and use the money for one in better condition.

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Can a leather chin strap from a helmet liner, that is already brittle and dry be restored?

The short answer to this question is no, there is nothing that can be done to preserve and soften dry rotted leather.

 

Unfortunately, once leather has reached the beginning stages of dry rot there is nothing that can be done to reverse it. There are a multitude of products made for leather treatment and they work for their intended purpose on boots and saddles and the like when the leather is in good shape and used regularly. These same products will not revitalize dry stiff leather and generally quicken the deterioration that has begun from the dry rot.

 

Should I dip it in oil? - Petroleum products will provide a short period of softness and flexibility prior to quickening the deterioration of the leather. It will dramatically darken the leather to an unnatural look and will interact with the color components of the leather making , for lack of a better term, a leather soup which will transfer onto your hands and to other objects the leather has prolonged contact with. Hence the staining of the liner referred to by aef1917.

 

Hope this helps.

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Thanks guys! I tried experimenting, using WD40 since I was already ready to garbage it and to tell you frankly it worked. Now it is soft leather, I can even untwist the twisted parts that were really dry and brittle. Dark leather is just perfect for me. :D


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Thanks guys! I tried experimenting, using WD40 since I was already ready to garbage it and to tell you frankly it worked. Now it is soft leather, I can even untwist the twisted parts that were really dry and brittle. Dark leather is just perfect for me. :D

All you have to worry about now is oil staining on your liner or shell brim.

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No worries! It is a cheap helmet liner. If it was an expensive helmet I would not restore it I would have gotten a NOS strap. I just didnt want to throw away the liner


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Why did you come here for advice, and then do the exact opposite?

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Why did you come here for advice, and then do the exact opposite?

 

I came here because I wanted to and no one can stop me for doing that. I wanted to repair or restore and the advise I got was not to touch it. Should I just watch the strap break and then throw it away? Or should I just throw it away with out trying to do anything about it? It turns out the strap could be saved, so what is your problem?


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This is why we can't have nice things.

Maybe you cant have nice things. Me, I have now a nice strap that was suppose to be thrown in the garbage. I saved it from destruction.


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I think all these guys were just trying to say is basically it's a temporary fix. From my experience it is just that, I had one same condition as yours and I applied a leather rejuvenator on it and yea it looked good for a time but it dried up again and looked like it did before maybe even more stiffer. It's your strap and liner you do whatever you wish with it. I know guys that have used WD40 on leather seats and they say you have to keep applying it because it dries up really quick just a thought.

 

Ray

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There are people who are against restoration or preservation, but there are also people who would rather restore or preserve. I am more educated than that. Even the best museums in the world restores valuable work of arts. In this case we are talking about a brittle dry leather that is not even valuable. The strap does not belong to any important person or had been documented in any historic battle. It is a cheap strap that was suppose to be thrown out of the garbage. I can do what I want and I can ask advices and not follow it if I like. So, please, people who are less educated should reframe from commenting on things they dont know. Let us all be civil and educated and respect other opinions.


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I think a lot of it has to do with what you use - in general, I agree to not mess with stuff. That said, as an experiment that won't ruin another piece by proximity, maybe it's a learning opportunity. I personally would have used something other than WD-40, as it was specifically designed as a "Water Displacer". I would have tried something like Ballistol.

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If this guy was going around destroying uniforms or something, that's one thing. He puts some WD40 on a leather chinstrap that he owns, and he gets ridiculed for it? So what? It's his. He bought it. Asking for advice here doesn't mean you have to follow it. This forum is better than that.


 

Looking to buy US dog tags, any era. Contact me and let me know what you have!

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While I agree you are not obligated to follow any advice, it's a little ironic that you make a call for civility and respect, and then say "... people who are less educated should reframe (sic) from commenting." Opinions aren't necessarily based upon education, but maybe moreso on experience; or, a combination of both. For example, when a friend asks what color shirt they should wear, I'm not sure education is what informs your response, as much as personal preference. That's all folks here were sharing, their preference. We are largely collectors, not museum curators, so you are prone to get advice favoring originality versus presentability. Much of that has to do with seeing historically significant pieces destroyed by well-meaning folks trying to restore it, or find a name, decal, etc, on it.

 

So, people shared their preference, and you chose your own - which everybody is entitled to.

 

Peace.

 

There are people who are against restoration or preservation, but there are also people who would rather restore or preserve. I am more educated than that. Even the best museums in the world restores valuable work of arts. In this case we are talking about a brittle dry leather that is not even valuable. The strap does not belong to any important person or had been documented in any historic battle. It is a cheap strap that was suppose to be thrown out of the garbage. I can do what I want and I can ask advices and not follow it if I like. So, please, people who are less educated should reframe from commenting on things they dont know. Let us all be civil and educated and respect other opinions.

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What I don't understand is why this thread was even started.

 

OP: I have a chinstrap, should I soak it in oil?

Everyone Else: No.

OP: I soaked it in oil.

 

Why even bother with the first two steps?

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There are people who are against restoration or preservation, but there are also people who would rather restore or preserve. I am more educated than that. Even the best museums in the world restores valuable work of arts. In this case we are talking about a brittle dry leather that is not even valuable. The strap does not belong to any important person or had been documented in any historic battle. It is a cheap strap that was suppose to be thrown out of the garbage. I can do what I want and I can ask advices and not follow it if I like. So, please, people who are less educated should reframe from commenting on things they dont know. Let us all be civil and educated and respect other opinions.

 

Frankly, your attitude is extremely poor! The guys who were offering advice are some of the most knowledgeable helmet collectors on this forum, not less educated as you called it. You call for civility after you show a great lack of civility. We are collectors and preservationists, these guys know what works and what does not. So, let me clear up some ignorance for you: Oil, does not work on leather, period. WD-40, is a petroleum product so, it will destroy your leather in a short time also. But, like you said, it is yours to do with as you please and you do not need our advice.

 

But if you could please take this bit of advice: If you decide to ignore proper answers to your question, that is your choice, but if you get an attitude of superiority like this again on the USMF, your account will be suspended. Is that clear enough for you?


"There is no such thing as an expert, only students with different levels of education."
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