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Old 06-27-2007, 03:30 PM  
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Saddle Cleaning Products

Howdy Pardners!
I was just wondering what everyone uses for tack cleaning products. I have some REALLY grungy lesson horse tack (to be read as 'often used, never cleaned') to whip into shape for the next summer show in a few weeks and I'm wondering what would be the best thing to use. Is plain old saddle soap my best option? Should I use a conditioner afterwards? Thanks for your input!
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Old 06-27-2007, 03:52 PM  
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Hi, we just finished working on a 30+ year old saddle that needed MAJOR cleaning. We have a friend who is a saddle maker and she recommended cleaning it with Murphy's Oil Soap and water. Let it dry thoroughly. I can't stress that enough. Put a fan on it. After it is cleaned and dried, use 100% Neatsfoot oil on it. If the finish isn't what you want, you can put resolene on it to refinish the leather. Note that resolene cannot be used on suede or roughout leather.
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Old 06-27-2007, 03:54 PM  
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Ditto Diamond Y, I use Murhpy's on everything
The only thing I'd add is that if you really want the neatsfoot to soak in , heat it (disposable plastic container in the microwave, you'll never get the smell out of your dishes!)
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Old 06-27-2007, 04:00 PM  
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Thanks so much for the quick responses guys! I will definitly try those out! Looks like i wont need to bring out the sand blaster after all
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Old 06-28-2007, 12:46 AM  
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It's funny that I am reading this post now. I just came on to say that I purchased a old, rattie kids saddle for $20.00 and am cleaning it up. I talked to a saddle repair guy and he said that best thing to do was to take it to a car wash and spray it down with tons of water, use saddle soap on it, let it dry and then condition it. Well, it's so small, I am actually running it thru the dishwasher! I didn't put any soap in it and turned the dryer off.

I'll let you know how it turns out, I am kind of excited to see what happens.


Sherri
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Old 06-28-2007, 09:15 AM  
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I have reconditioned some awful looking stuff with Murphy's Oil Soap and a toothbrush - and then lots and lots of oil... both with soften the leather, while the soap will clean off the dirt..
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Old 06-28-2007, 09:25 AM  
 
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We get the leather wipes to do a quick cleaning through out the year. It does help keep the tack clean.
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Old 06-28-2007, 11:24 AM  
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The Leather CPR works really great too. We had a really OLD pony saddle clean up almost to new. I also like the Feiblings products and am stuck on the foam cleaner/conditioner it made my new, stiff briddle soft and workable. At the race track I worked at they only used Murphy's oil soap on all their harness's.
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Old 06-28-2007, 12:17 PM  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sherriawright View Post
It's funny that I am reading this post now. I just came on to say that I purchased a old, rattie kids saddle for $20.00 and am cleaning it up. I talked to a saddle repair guy and he said that best thing to do was to take it to a car wash and spray it down with tons of water, use saddle soap on it, let it dry and then condition it. Well, it's so small, I am actually running it thru the dishwasher! I didn't put any soap in it and turned the dryer off.

I'll let you know how it turns out, I am kind of excited to see what happens.


Sherri
Ok you definitly have to let us know how THAT turns out!
Thanks for your input everyone!!!
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Old 06-28-2007, 12:28 PM  
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Leather CPR is great!
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Old 06-28-2007, 08:17 PM  
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Over the years I've cleaned many eng and west saddles in every state of condition. I like to add a tbsp of vinegar to about a gal. of water. Using a sponge, I dampen several pieces of leather, rinse my sponge, then apply glycerin soap, as foamy as possible, with my sponge. I will let that sit a few minutes to help lift the dirt. Constantly rinsing the sponge with clean water prevents redistributing the dirt. Before I oil a saddle, I may wait a week and reclean it if particularly bad. I don't want the oil to drive the dirt deeper. The leather will benefit from the second cleaning as it is absorbing more moisture. While the leather is damp, I assess whether or not the saddle needs oiling. I use a china (Corningware) dish and place it on the element of my coffemaker. When it starts to spatter I shut down the element and using a brush I save only for this, I quickly brush the oil on while it is hot. I never apply a second coat for months so as not to overdo it. By brushing quickly you will not apply too much oil. The brush will absorb and hold a certain amount of oil so it is just wrapped in plastic wrap and hung up. I prefer a brush aprox. 2-2,1/2". A rag will soak up a lot of oil so not my preference.
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