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Thread: cleaning a strop

  1. #1
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    cleaning a strop

    Hello all. I use a leather belt on my belt grinder for stropping and deburring after using the stones. It's currently loaded with veritas green chromium oxide and black from all the impregnated swarf. I'd like to get it clean like new and try some diamond or CBN. I'm not sure how to clean leather and id prefer not to use WD. thanks

  2. #2
    Senior Member Crothcipt's Avatar
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    I would get a different belt, just because you never will get rid of all the stuff at that small range.
    Chewie's the man.

  3. #3
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    Won't the metal swarf work against the fine grit of the compound though?

  4. #4
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    You can try cleaning the leather with saddle soap. I bought one 11" x 3" at least 15 years ago and have cleaned it many times with saddle soap. I'm pretty sure it would work in your situation too. I use Kiwi Outdoor saddle soap. Just follow the directions.
    It is better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.

  5. #5
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    You can try to remove most of the waxiness with some rubbing alcohol, then sand down the belt about 0.25mm or less until the leather is clean. I use worn sandpaper of a very coarse grit to minimize the particle contamination, but I've had mixed results. It has worked before for me, other times I seem to end up getting small scratches in my blades from contamination. Perhaps the leather should be cleaned after sanding...

  6. #6
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    I'll get some saddle soap and try that thanks. Has anyone tried the spray type compounds on a leather belt? I'm wondering if it'll adhere without the waxy binder

  7. #7
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    I cleaned it today with mineral oil and a scotchbright pad and a cloth. then ran it on the machine on some 600 wet and dry till I was getting leather dust on it. Then reapplied compound much better this time with a hairdryer and a lot of rubbing with my fingers. Still wondering about the diamond sprays though as I'll probably grab another belt

  8. #8
    For cleaning a smooth leather benchstrop I use a (non-pumice containing) waterless hand cleaner and for a smooth leather belt I use Camellia oil on a rag while the belt is in motion. I prefer Camellia oil because it's very light and doesn't penetrate the leather which is perfect to keep stretch at a minimum.

    Diamond sprays will fly off of a belt (so use a splash guard) but generally enough (if you really soak the belt) will retain on the surface to get the desired benefits.

  9. #9
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    thanks. I may just get some 1u BC and save the diamond or cbn for hand strops. The camella oil will remove the grit and wax of the paste and the swarf? And Dave why don't you sell the compounds anymore? Or can I not just find them on your site?

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by vicv View Post
    thanks. I may just get some 1u BC and save the diamond or cbn for hand strops. The camella oil will remove the grit and wax of the paste and the swarf? And Dave why don't you sell the compounds anymore? Or can I not just find them on your site?

    I forgot to mention that slowing your grinder down will help keep the liquids on the belt.

    Yup Camellia oil/rag removes all the gunk from a belt very quickly.

    I had to get out of the strop & compound selling, sorry.

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