Is my leather jacket drying out?

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by phario, May 17, 2019.

  1. phario

    phario New in Town

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    4
    This is a Schott 654 in Black Cherry. I've had it for about 5 years, and worn probably 20% of the year during that time. I've applied leather conditioner once or twice, but otherwise no extra care. I keep it out of rain.

    I've noticed that some of the surfaces show wear and I'm wondering if it's unusual wear or just normal distressing that is unavoidable. It's difficult to capture on camera but is clearly visible compared to leather on the inner side which hasn't been exposred to the elements. It shows up in daylight as 'microcracks' and gives the previously rich black cherry colouring a white distressed overlay.

    I've given some images below compared to the inner side. It's difficult to capture with the camera but it was an expensive jacket so I want to make sure I'm doing whatever I can to keep it in excellent condition.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. zebedee

    zebedee Practically Family

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    Nothing to worry about.
     
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  3. Edward

    Edward Bartender

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    Looks like normal wear to me; how does it feel to the touch? Is it only the look of some parts that is different, or do they feel dried out and a bit papery?
     
  4. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    8,737
    Absolutely and perfectly normal. It's simply wear. Patina, what some'd call it. Top coat is dye and behaves that way. Think of it as an oil painting. White overlay you're seeing is an actual color of the hide visible between the flakes of dye. The top will however continue to fade, though but that's also perfectly normal.

    You'd know straight away if the leather was dry and cracking. Leather would feel very stiff and cracks would go deep. And it would take you decades for the jacket to reach that stage.

    In short, literally nothing to worry about.
     
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  5. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

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    Leather fades, wrinkles, cracks, creases, stains and ages. That's kind of the point of a natural material. Edward's right - if it feels papery and dry a sign, maybe, but it's unlikely unless the leather is 20 years old and has been kept in the sun. If you feel really anxious, you can rub in a good conditioner (Lexol or Pecards) every couple of years (this may not do anything in practice but may prevent further drying out and settle your nerves.
     
  6. dan_t

    dan_t Practically Family

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    These hides are so full of waxes & oils from new that you really don’t need to do anything for years (read a couple of decades).
    It’s also normal for the hides to ‘bloom’. This is where the waxes come to the surface & show up as a slight white residue.
    Different atmospheric conditions will make this more or less noticeable.
    Any over-conditioning of the hide will also result in a similar effect.
     
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  7. navetsea

    navetsea Call Me a Cab

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    is that white dust powdery? can be excess wax, can be salt from absorbed sweat, can be mildew. if not powdery then it might just surface wear and jacket showing character, there is no harm in lightly condition it just like wearing body lotion, don't saturate it with conditioner.
     
  8. Peacoat

    Peacoat I'll Lock Up

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    Don't put any more conditioner on it. Leave it alone. Do as @dan_t says above. If you have to do something with it, put a little bit of conditioner on the inside of the collar once a year. Just wear it and allow it to develop patina and creases naturally. Hard to develop patina when you are putting conditioner on it.



     
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  9. phario

    phario New in Town

    Messages:
    4
    Hi everyone. Thanks for all the kind replies. It looks like this is all largely normal wear. Though:

    It doesn't feel perfectly smooth, and it does feel a bit papery. I would equate it to like running your fingers over printer copy paper---so smooth but not brand new nor glossy. You can tell the texture is very slightly different, but I don't think anybody would say this is anything unusual.

    Heh, I'm not even sure how to describe it. I would say that if you look closely you see these 'microcracks' (more on that below). The surface seems to exhibit what one would say is normal wear. It's all very hard to describe because I'm not an expert. It could very well be that the texture I feel is a function of the conditioner I put on or other surface oils.

    So since most people here have convinced me that this is all normal, I have a slightly different question about leather in general. In the below picture you see three leather items: (i) a pebbled black cowhide motorcycle jacket sleeve; (ii) a full grain leather belt; (iii) a saddleback full grain leather holder.

    [​IMG]

    None of these surfaces exhibit the same kind of 'worn' texture as my jacket, which was why I was worried. They're all smooth leather, almost 'glossy' in texture, with none of that 'microcracking' I referred to above. The credit holder shows scuffs, but you can see that the leather is smooth. The same is true for my good quality leather shoes.

    What is the reason why the wear seems to be so different than my Schott jacket?
     
  10. Gamma68

    Gamma68 One Too Many

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    I own a Schott 654 and a Schott 626, both in brown and made from the same lightweight cowhide. I'm seeing the same effects you describe and picture above--more so on the 626. The lighter areas do feel a little rougher to the touch than the areas of darker color. But this is not a flaw or indicative of a problem.

    You could give your jacket a light coat of Lexol, but within a few weeks it will return to the same state.

    I wouldn't worry about it. Enjoy the experience that comes with wearing a natural hide.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2019
  11. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

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    I didn't notice the bit where you said you had put conditioner on it. Scrap my advice, I agree with Peacoat - don't touch it.

    And in answering your question - all leathers are different - they are tanned and processed and dyed differently, come from different animals, are cut from different places on the animal and to different thicknesses, and therefore have different qualities. When you are comparing various leathers, you are not really comparing apples with apples.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2019
  12. navetsea

    navetsea Call Me a Cab

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    because the items are stretched not compressed, if you spread open the wallet, and run your hand against texture formed on the spine probably you get closer feeling, similar with belt the smooth side is always stretched so you don't see creases, with jacket your movements make criss cross creases and overtime that make crack pattern you can feel with your hand, also there are parts in jacket where the leather is brushing against itself like on the armpit the inside of the sleeve or inside of the elbow. pebbled leather either from tumbling or pressed on are just better at camouflaging it, and on the tumbled leather the leather has naturally show all possible creases and they just reuse those creases instead of making new ones, so it may take very long time to show any new creases, on pressed on pattern since the pebble is just man made pattern and the leather is still stiff it will crease showing different crease marks than its pebble pattern, maybe the pattern are just better at hiding it.
     
  13. dudewuttheheck

    dudewuttheheck One Too Many

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    Looks great to me! One of the biggest mistakes people make is conditioning their leather jackets too much.
     
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  14. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    8,737
    How did it happen?
     
  15. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    That definitely shouldn't have happened...
     
  16. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

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    One in a million jackets, by whichever maker, will rip - a flaw in the leather, perhaps. It happens so rarely that I don't think we can put it down to anything but bad luck.
     
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  17. Gamma68

    Gamma68 One Too Many

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    You’ve mentioned this a few times in different threads. Any pics?

    This was on a brand new Schott horsehide jacket? Did you contact Schott about it?

    I don’t see how the leather on a Schott jacket would rip just by stretching.
     
    Peacoat likes this.
  18. Peacoat

    Peacoat I'll Lock Up

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    Agreed.
     

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