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#140024 - 01/02/18 07:13 PM Leather Treatment
Selden Offline
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Registered: 03/25/16
Posts: 314
Loc: GA
If this is the wrong forum, feel free to move.

I've searched the archives for advice on treatments for leather boots, but found no consolidated discussion.

After picking up a pair of full-on MX boots last summer, I've decided they are overkill for my riding, and too uncomfortable for hiking, so I'm looking at a pair of Gaerne Balance boots as a usable compromise.

What do people like for treating leather boots for long life and water resistance?

So far, I have winnowed my list down to these products, but I am open to suggestions:

Obenauf's Heavy Duty LP

Obenauf's Leather Oil

Fiebing's Mink Oil Paste

Kiwi Camp Dry
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#140025 - 01/02/18 07:31 PM Re: Leather Treatment [Re: Selden]
Az4x4 Offline
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Registered: 08/18/08
Posts: 4050
Loc: Heber/Overgaard, AZ

Any of the products you've listed should do the job.

Because my dad and grandpa used it ranching and farming, teaching me its value when I was young, I'm partial to Neatsfoot Oil as a top notch preservative, waterproofer and protector of all types of leather goods.

Wikipedia says: "Neatsfoot oil is a yellow oil rendered and purified from the shin bones and feet (but not the hooves) of cattle. "Neat" in the oil's name comes from an old English word for cattle. Neatsfoot oil is used as a conditioning, softening and preservative agent for leather."

It's been around it seems forever, and won't fail to impress if used..
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#140038 - 01/02/18 11:55 PM Re: Leather Treatment [Re: Selden]
patuca Offline
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Registered: 08/18/12
Posts: 549
Loc: Cranbrook BC Canada
I've had years of experience with leather work boots in wet conditions. In the old days it was 'Dubbin' which was a thick greasy tar and lard based application, then came lanolin grease and still later the silicone grease sealers and sprays, including 'Snow-Seal' which works well if the applications are kept fresh.

My advice is to use plain leather oil and avoid the waterproof sealers.

The problem with sealers is that eventually some dampness will migrate into the seams of the boots and then the sealer won't allow them to fully dry. The boot may appear dry, but residual moisture remains in the seam and rots the thread and leather around the seams. Even in the case of synthetic thread the stitching at the seam will rot fast if it can't dry out.

In the place I worked there was three schools of thought:

1. If you want to be dry, wear rubber boots.

2. If you want to have leather boots that are dry use sealant, but be prepared replace the boots every few years.

3. If you wanted soft leather boots that got a little damp, but dried out fast and lasted forever, just wash them off and let them dry and the use boot oil to keep them soft and shoe-polish if you want to be pretty.

Mostly I tried to keep them clean and use a good boot-oil or neatsfoot oil to renew the softness. They may not be waterproof without sealant but they will dry out fast, stay soft and comfortable and last for many years. The key is they have to be able to dry completely.

just me maybe....

patuca
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#140042 - 01/03/18 04:18 PM Re: Leather Treatment [Re: Selden]
peejman Online   content
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Registered: 06/03/13
Posts: 2765
Loc: East TN USA
Those seem to be the "go-to" boots for all the trials riders I know. Otherwise, what they ^ said.
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#140043 - 01/03/18 04:31 PM Re: Leather Treatment [Re: Selden]
Muniac Offline


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Registered: 01/16/04
Posts: 5347
Loc: Montrose, CO
I've had good luck with Neatsfoot oil on leather (boots and jackets). Keeps it soft, pliable and in good shape. Marginal water resistance but generally OK, however.

As for waterproofing, I've used the 303 Aerospace Protectant which is OK. Scotch Guard use to be the best. Most of the "older" formulas have been environmentally dumbed down and don't perform like their originals. Scotch Guard is a good example.

Per Patuca, I'd go with an oil that affords leather some water resistance but allows breathing.
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#140108 - 01/08/18 04:19 PM Re: Leather Treatment [Re: Selden]
Paul49 Offline
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Registered: 07/22/11
Posts: 1557
Loc: High Peak, UK
By 'eck thems look the dogs danglies of boots eh mucka.

My bike boots are Goretex so I just polish them with normal shoe polish 'cos owt else ruins the breath-ability of the Goretex.

Me Meindl Borneo hiking boots are waxed nubuck leather, looks similar leather to those bike boots. I treat them with Grangers G-wax. Can stand in a stream in them, let nowt through.

http://www.gooutdoors.co.uk/grangers-g-wax-leather-footwear-conditioner-p342371

Or the stuff marketed by Meindl, but dearer.
https://www.tauntonleisure.com/meindl-sportwax-80g-p3898.html
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#140118 - 01/08/18 11:51 PM Re: Leather Treatment [Re: Selden]
James Springate Offline
Member L2
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Registered: 01/18/12
Posts: 207
Loc: Versailles, Kentucky
I use Skidmore's Leather Cream, then follow with waterproofing. These are beeswax products.

http://www.skidmores.com/products.asp?cat=14

Here is a Wiki article on the subject.

https://www.wikihow.com/Care-for-Motorcycle-Boots-and-Saddlebags

I'm currently using Skidmore's cream on the wood of my dining room chairs that have faded due to UV exposure. Truly amazing what it does to wood.


Edited by James Springate (01/08/18 11:52 PM)
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