ray holes leather care
Owning a saddle company Ray Holes had been looking for a light easily penetrating product for his customers to use to protect the new saddles he made them from weather and wear. While most saddle makers at the time used dubbin, dubbin while original developed to help restore older leather, he found too heavy for the hides and lacking the deeper penetration he needed to feed the leather.
Not finding any product on the market to meet his (and his customers) needs, out came the cooking pot and Ray started blending only natural fats and oils until he found a combination that met his needs. This homemade concoction he supplied to ranchers and farmers when they purchased new leather items (they use a lot more harness and tack back then). Ray also started to use this “butter” to help soften and feed leather items which came in to be repaired to give them back some of their lost flexibility and strength. His customers were seeing huge benefits in using his butter and started coming back for more for their own use. In 1936 the first official jar of Ray’s Saddle Butter was labelled, the formula has remained unchanged and to this day is one of the finest leather care products available and firm favourite of farmers and ranchers throughout the US.
Their products have been developed from years of experience working leather and understanding the needs and requirements of their customers. Unlike so many modern products that have chemical additives they use only natural fats, oils and waxes to replace the natural oils and fats which leather loses through weather and wear.
This little company does very little in way of advertising relying primarily on word-of-mouth and reviews to sell their products, believing that if you make the best product for the job, it will sell itself.
The same all natural formula since its launch in 1936, Saddle Butter remains one of the finest leather cleaning and care products available. It works by replacing the natural oils in leather that are lost through use and exposure with a blend of the finest natural oils and fats that have the same properties as those found within the leather.
Unlike heavier products it melts at body temperature allowing for deeper penetration of the leather both when first applied and further when your leather is used. It softens dry leather and waterproofs as well as conditions the hide, helping maintain leather’s strength and giving it that soft supple feel that we so desired, helping make it more comfortable for our horses and ourselves.
Saddle Butter works on all fine, top-grained leather. It has a close to neutral pH and will cause little to no discolouration of leather (always do a patch test first!). The ultra-fine texture won’t leave your tack feeling tacky or rub off onto your clothes as oils tend to do and once absorbed it buffs with a soft cloth to a subtle bloom.
Vaquero Rawhide Cream
Rawhide is essentially raw untanned leather and the products developed for tanned leather will darken and “soak” rawhide effecting its colour, structure and strength. Vaquero Rawhide Cream has a light mousse-like texture formulated using only natural ingredients to give rawhide products the natural nourishment they need to maintain their structure and strength without effecting their colour while adding a softness to surface which your horse and your hands will thank you for.
While originally developed for the rawhide, Rawhide Cream is also an excellent product to clean and condition light coloured leather, English, Western and Paso Tack.
Developed back in 1942 Chap Wax is an all-natural wax waterproofing for leather, using only the finest ingredient it is the ultimate solution for those looking for a waterproofing that will care for top-grained leather products.
Whether about the yard or out in the field Chap Wax provides that extra protection needed from rain, snow, mud and anything else nature might through at you. Use on ‘leaky’ chaps, quilted saddle seats, boots, shoes, gun cases, briefcases, binocular cases or any other leather item needing protection and added life from the elements. Chap Wax provides a moisture shield and does not soften leathers making it ideal for use where you need to maintain the shape of preformed leather items.
Chap Wax can also be applied over Saddle Butter for added protection or as a quick fix on that leaky old oilskin jacket.
For those looking for the best natural waterproofing for boots and shoes, briefcases and binocular cases and all those other leather items they might take out and about in the English weather. Dri-Boot offers a moisture shield that won’t change the shape of the leather while helping keep leathers items in top form for years.