Unusual leather straps
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  1. #1
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    Unusual leather straps

    As Anyone interested has seen I'm in the safari business. My job title in this role is " Professional Hunter". It is a bit of a Misnomer as I'm not the one typically doing the hunting. Rather the one responsible for the visitors that come her to hunt with camera or rifle. It's a photo tourism and hunting operation. However, I'm not the stereotypical shoot em up slaughter everything in sight person that many relate to being a hunter. I'm actually a wildlife manager with a degree that assists in the population control of the parks and private reserves to manage wildlife. I use the hunting aspect of this to balance the populations and to pay the salaries of the staff needed to operate a massive game park operation. With that said, there are the occasional animals that are sick, dangerous, or simply just too many of one species. As an example, we have trouble with poachers frequently. They pull down the phone lines and use the wire for snares. On occasion, an elephant will be snared by the trunk. When this happens they will fight the wire until it tightens and cuts the end of the trunk off. At that point the Elephant is dead. It will take days to die because they cannot eat or drink without the end of the trunk functionally intact. These must be put down. There are countless examples of these kinds of injuries or sickness to control so the spread of sickness does not infect the greater population.

    So when you see these watch straps understand they were not from animals shot senselessly, but rather for a need that was undeniable and urgent. I find it a horrible waste to let these skins and ivory lay to waste when there is value in the parts to help pay for the operations here. Anti-poaching employees are not free and work at incredible risk.

    The top photo is a strap made from Elephant skin, the second one down is from Rhino. They are quite nice and fit the watch 22mm lugs perfectly. I do need to find a Bronze buckle to replace that stainless buckle. The Keeper on the rhino strap is made from elephant. I am having another set made now that will be 24mm as I hope to secure a Bronze Orca H2O when they are offered this month.

    And, in case you're wondering, I do not use these on the shark cage dives. I only use them out of the water. I use the original Rubber strap in the cage, and for all my diving.Name:  FullSizeRender 392.jpg
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    Last edited by JJHACK1; March 8th, 2017 at 21:21.

  2. #2
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    those look awesome. congrats

  3. #3
    Member SHANE 1000's Avatar
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Used to get mine from boot companies that had remnants.


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    Last edited by SHANE 1000; March 11th, 2017 at 07:47.
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    Member Shawnny's Avatar
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Wow, I would absolutely love to have an elephant or rhino strap. I think it's a wonderful way to show respect to an animal that had to lose its life. Unfortunately, we have rattlesnake problems at the ranch. They are to dangerous to relocate when they are found around the house. This little guy was wrapped around a water faucet and took a swip at me when I bent down to turn the water on. He became an appetizer and a watch strap.






  5. #5
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    The Keeper is a nice touch, did you sew the snake skin or use an adhesive to bond to the leather?

    I have had equal success with both. Sometimes on my dive watch straps the adhesive works better than having the stitching wet and dry constantly. However, there are times with the adhesive does not equally bond to both types of leathers and the shrinkage and drying takes it's toll. Those are always better being sewn.

  6. #6
    Member Shawnny's Avatar
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Quote Originally Posted by JJHACK1 View Post
    The Keeper is a nice touch, did you sew the snake skin or use an adhesive to bond to the leather?

    I have had equal success with both. Sometimes on my dive watch straps the adhesive works better than having the stitching wet and dry constantly. However, there are times with the adhesive does not equally bond to both types of leathers and the shrinkage and drying takes it's toll. Those are always better being sewn.
    Its glued on. I'll probably have it completely sewn on someday. I only wear it for very special events.

  7. #7
    Member Shawnny's Avatar
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Oh, it was made by Jeremy of Prime Straps. He's a fantastic guy to work with!

    Prime Straps (Pictures of my custom straps)
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Did the skin get tanned or just dried? Dried is perfectly good for snake skin that never gets wet again. However, if it's gonna get wet then it needs to be tanned.

  9. #9
    Member Shawnny's Avatar
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Quote Originally Posted by JJHACK1 View Post
    Did the skin get tanned or just dried? Dried is perfectly good for snake skin that never gets wet again. However, if it's gonna get wet then it needs to be tanned.
    I preserved it with something called Snaketan. You soak it for like 48 hours. It leaves the skin a little greasy. So it was hard for Jeremy to glue it. That's why I'll probably have it sewn at some point.

  10. #10
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    Re: Unusual leather straps

    Snake tan is very good, I have done lots of snakes with that method.

    One consideration of the oils, that is intended to prevent cracking when over dried years down the road. You can remove that quite effectively with a few minutes soak in a jar of rubbing alcohol. It will dry the skin out and leave it more likely to crack in the coming decade, but it would last about as long as the strap would last anyway. Plus the only real crack stress point on the strap as where it goes through the buckle, no place else. It could be made in a way that the snake skin stops short of the buckle and is just the leather backing from there?

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