Smoothen out this stetson?

Discussion in 'Hats' started by Jeffrey W, Jul 31, 2020.

  1. Jeffrey W

    Jeffrey W New in Town

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    5
    Question from a newbie!

    I purchased this vintage Stetson Billy Kid felt western hat and the brim looks rough. Hairs are sticking up and there is a lot of fuzz around the brim. The crown is in good shape however.

    Is there any way to smoothen this out? I was thinking of sanding it gently but I've heard you can end up doing more harm than good if you're not experienced in sanding/pouncing hats so I'm hesitant.

    I've tried brushing it counter-clockwise with a horse hair brush but it doesn't seem to make much of a difference.

    Any input would be appreciated!


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  2. Jeffrey W

    Jeffrey W New in Town

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  3. deadlyhandsome

    deadlyhandsome I'll Lock Up

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    These The Billy Kidd hats (named after the skier not the outlaw/gun fighter) were not great hats. Since you are not starting with the best felt you shouldn’t expect too much from the hat. A light pouncing could help and shouldn’t hurt. You can also use a hat sponge to remove the fuzz, and I’d try that before sandpaper. Good luck.
     
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  4. belfastboy

    belfastboy I'll Lock Up

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    I would try the white material abrasive pads. I use them to finish a hat. They are slightly more abrasive than the orange hat sponge and do take off a small amount of felt but not much if you use a light touch.
     
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  5. Jeffrey W

    Jeffrey W New in Town

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    I gave the orange sponge a try and didn't have too much luck with that either - perhaps I didn't spend enough time on it though. I could try and find some of those white abrasive pads before I try sanding.

    Would it be foolish to try and go over it a few times with one of those electric fabric shavers?
     
  6. belfastboy

    belfastboy I'll Lock Up

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    I have never tried that. If you use a sandpaper use a very fine grit. Even a 1200 grit still can remove a fair amount of felt. Go slow with a light touch using a fine grit and you will be okay.
     
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  7. Jeffrey W

    Jeffrey W New in Town

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    Thanks a bunch! I'll give that a try.
     
  8. deadlyhandsome

    deadlyhandsome I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    9,884
    Location:
    Central California
    There are times when I needed to remove a lot of felt. I’ve used 80 grit on some of the thicker felts, particularly on the brim edge when I’m getting aggressive. I go up to 400, 800, and 1200. When using the coarser paper you have to be very careful, but sometimes it’s needed to remove moth pitting etc. For what you’re describing I wouldn’t go coarser than 800. Go slow and use a light touch and these thick western weight felts can take quite a bit of pouncing without damage.
     
    Ross Young, Jeffrey W and belfastboy like this.
  9. Jeffrey W

    Jeffrey W New in Town

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    5
    So I took your advice and far so good! The 1200 smoothed out the fuzziness around the edge pretty quickly. Working my way around the top of the brim now and it's going well. Thanks!
     

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