Has anyone ever dyed their tack? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 01-22-2013, 12:13 AM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2012
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Has anyone ever dyed their tack?

Being a new horse owner, I am flat broke. I have my heart set on getting a wonderful set of black leather tack but that is just not going to happen. So right now I have a black headstall with a brown hackamore. It drives me nuts that the two pieces don't match. I'd like to dye the hackamore black. It seems like it would be a simple process and I can't see how I could screw it up. Has anyone ever done this? Do you recommend it or have tips and tricks? If it works well on the hackamore is there any reason not to attempt it on a saddle?
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post #2 of 6 Old 01-22-2013, 06:51 AM
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I dyed a Hackamore once with Leather Dye, it turned out OK

As far as dying a whole Saddle, many Saddle Makers use a clear coat finish and some have various other coatings, which would not be a good candidate.

I have never heard of anyone doing it themselves and the one time I saw a Saddle done by a Saddle Shop, I did not like the results, it had been a few years and just looked weird, hard to describe the look, just weird...


May all your Trails be happy and safe ones

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post #3 of 6 Old 01-22-2013, 10:23 AM
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I'm currently in the process of dyeing my saddle black, it's not finished yet but so far I'm very happy with how it's going.

I took it completely apart, cleaned any particularly grungy spots, and used a 'deglazer' on the leather right before applying the dye (deglazer dries out the leather, so only put it on right before you're ready to dye) and I used Fiebing's alcohol based black dye. I did at least two coats, three coats on some areas. After buffing off any extra dye I applied Eco-Flo Super Shene to seal it (2 coats, buffing in between coats). All these products can be bought at Tandy Leather Factory - most cities have one, so you should be able to find them.

The deglazer is kind of nasty stuff - make sure you've got access to a well-ventilated area and wear gloves! The dye is pretty messy so don't wear your good clothes, lol. But it's a great feeling to look at the pieces that are done and know that I did that myself, I can't wait until it's all finished and reassembled. :)

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post #4 of 6 Old 01-22-2013, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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Awesome, thanks for the tips. I will go ahead and do the hackamore but at this time I'll leave the saddle alone. We'll see how the hackamore goes first!
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post #5 of 6 Old 01-23-2013, 10:17 AM
Join Date: May 2012
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Good plan! The only reason I'm diving right into the whole saddle as my first dyeing project is because a lady who does this for a living is giving me some pointers.

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post #6 of 6 Old 01-31-2013, 12:04 AM Thread Starter
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Update: The hackamore has been dyed and it is beautiful!

I was on Amazon getting ready to purchase the supplies when I realized that there's a local shoe repair shop that does a lot of varied leather work. They repair purses, make custom things, etc. So I brought the hackamore to them and they dyed it for me. It's beautiful and the cost to have it done was less than I was going to spend on supplies. :)
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