how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

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  1. #1
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    how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    I just got a luch wind up and love it. I quite like the leather strap it came with. usually I don't wear leather being a vegetarian. my plan was to replace the strap with an expansion band but I really like the classic look. I was just wondering how can you tell of it's real leather I had faux leather boots that you would never know are fake at least to me. the band doesn't say "genuine leather" but the store who sells it claims it to be a true leather band. honestly I compared the texture to my faux leather boots and wallet and it looks the same. is there anyway to tell any tricks? sorry of this is a dumb question.

  2. #2
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    Re: how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    Some collectables and industries have little tricks to check the authenticity of things. I know someone that collects scrimshaw and other whale bone/tooth related items, and he's saved himself a lot of money with nothing more than a pin and a lighter. An uncle of mine is addicted to old silver coins, he can tell what's worth buying just by dropping a coin on a table and listening, and he even has a trick with an icecube. A girlfrind from a previous life used her teeth to buy real pearls at antique markets. The list goes on.

    Leather, its not so cut and dried. I work with leather every day, and I can tell you that I would know by looking, touching, smelling, and feeling - but you can't do that over the internet. Fake leather can look real, and real leather that is treated or dyed a certain way can smell fake. Leather won't burn or warp with heat like synthetics will, so I could tell you to put a lighter to it, but that is destructive.

    Does the strap have any kind of grain or pattern? Look at it very closely, even down to the pores. If you see a noticeable pattern, fake.

    Leather is not a high-value item, so I don't think anyone has ever really bothered to take the time to develop great methods that don't involve labs and centrefuges.

    Your best bet is to get a look at the inside of the strap, but again - distructive. To make matters worse, leather comes in a huge array of qualities, and I have seen genuine leather so crappy that I would think that good cardboard would hold up better.

    Because real leather straps can be very cheap, I would wager that you probably do have a real leather strap in hand. Honestly, it sounds like that for moral reasons, you would prefer it to be synthetic to real leather; you can get a synthetic strap that is of decent quality and still gives you an authentic look without being 'fake leather'.
    Influence is like the wind...

  3. #3
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    Re: how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    Very informative and good to know. Thanks.
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    Re: how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    CAD, nailed it, but I'm going to add just a little bit. Look at leather the same way you would look at wood. Some wood is a nice homogenous piece of wood all the way through, other wood, like plywood is made of multiple thin slices of wood bound together, and the you have particle board or MDF, which is wood pieces ground up and glued back together. Its all still wood right? There are so many ways of slicing and dicing, glueing, bonding, impregnating...etc leather that a stamp that says "leather" on the back can become meaningless. Read this article Leather - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Note, "genuine leather" is not even a real term used, so it could be full grain (not likely) or bonded leather (very likely)
    You can watch something happen, you can make something happen, or you can stand there wondering what the hell just happened.

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    Re: how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    Quote Originally Posted by amacman View Post
    CAD, nailed it, but I'm going to add just a little bit. Look at leather the same way you would look at wood. Some wood is a nice homogenous piece of wood all the way through, other wood, like plywood is made of multiple thin slices of wood bound together, and the you have particle board or MDF, which is wood pieces ground up and glued back together. Its all still wood right? There are so many ways of slicing and dicing, glueing, bonding, impregnating...etc leather that a stamp that says "leather" on the back can become meaningless. Read this article Leather - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Note, "genuine leather" is not even a real term used, so it could be full grain (not likely) or bonded leather (very likely)
    the strap has little pores in it. the underside is skin colored and the outside is black It doesn't seem to have a scent that leather usually has it seems to be odorless. checking it more and comparing my fake leather items it seems to be more stiff than those items and doesn't have a consistent pattern to it like my fake leather. I'm thinking it is real leather but maybe a lower grade ?

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    Re: how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    Quote Originally Posted by iAMesper View Post
    the strap has little pores in it. the underside is skin colored and the outside is black It doesn't seem to have a scent that leather usually has it seems to be odorless. checking it more and comparing my fake leather items it seems to be more stiff than those items and doesn't have a consistent pattern to it like my fake leather. I'm thinking it is real leather but maybe a lower grade ?
    Probably a bonded leather. Basically leather particles, mixed with a binder, and spread in a layer over some kind of substrate(fabric). Basically the MDF or chicken nugget of the leather world.
    You can watch something happen, you can make something happen, or you can stand there wondering what the hell just happened.

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    Re: how can you tell if a strap is real leather?

    Quote Originally Posted by amacman View Post
    Probably a bonded leather. Basically leather particles, mixed with a binder, and spread in a layer over some kind of substrate(fabric). Basically the MDF or chicken nugget of the leather world.
    hahaha that actually makes sense. when it breaks I'm going to replace it with a decent more expensive faux leather band.

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