|Price:||$11.95 - $17.95|
- Leather Preservative
- Water penetration resistant
- Scuffing and abrasion resistant
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Leather preservative from Obenauf's Leather was originally developed in Idaho by a wildland firefighter, developed this unique blend of beeswax/propolis suspension formula to protect leather against caustic fire, retardant chemicals, heat, water and abrasion. The natural oils are gradually released into leather fibers as a long-term lubrication. Heat or continued flexing causes oils to be released faster this product reinforces fibers against scuffing and allows the leather to still breathe. Apply by hand as body temperature helps melt the leather preservative into damp or dry leather, applying two applications last much longer in severe wet conditions. Style(s): 0103
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I've been using these solely for my heavier boots and belts so I can't say much else for other leather products but I see a few problems with such use.
Application: This is a wax, so it has the consistency of a soft runny wax that will melt with body heat. I usually apply this stuff by hand and it works very well since it allows you to massage the wax into the leather. After application, it takes about a day to dry or a bit faster if left in a warm(not hot) place. After it's dry, use a rag to wipe off the excess and a Qtip to get into the nooks and crannies. I then use horsehair brush to buff off the excess. This will leave a dull sheen that can be polished if you want to. It works well but tends to leave an annoying sticky and waxy residue longer than other conditioners. It took almost a week for a pair of boots to dry before it wasn't sticky to the touch anymore. I don't know how people can use it for leather couches or anything you regularly touch.
The smell: Obernauf's formula is obviously made from a base of bees wax and other proprietary leather conditioning oils(often animal products but may occasionally be saps or plant based) so there is a smell. A pretty a strong smell. It's not unpleasant and smells like honey but it actually remains around for some time. I waxed my Red Wing work boots about 3-4months ago and it still smells of honey when I lace them up. This makes me doubtful about its utility on other leather products such as jackets you'll reek of honey for weeks if not months.
The color: It will darken leather. Basically all leather conditioners will but this will significantly darken it until it totally dries. Even dry, it will still be a few shade darker. It took several months before my Red Wing work boots came back closer to its original copper color. Personally I think it is worth it unless you have a very light pair of shoes. It works best for dark brown or black leather. I'd avoid using these in dress shoes, the leather oil is better for that use.
The protection: It works very well. It revitalized several old dry leather belts and boots. It has brought some measure of life back to those shoes and boots. I'm expecting a few more years of life from those old worn boots and belts.
It works great at waterproofing. My Danner leather hiking boots have been through treks through muddy trails and streams and after a good rinse, the muck and water slides off. It's not magic but it comes close. When I hose off my Red Wing work boots, the dust easily washes off and the boot itself looks untouched beneath. I've been using the HDLP on my hiking shoes for almost 3years with weekly day hikes, my Danners look worn in but the leather still looks great. I've had to reapply the HDLP every 3-4months.
Overall great product with some caveats. Caution because of the darkening of leather, smell and sticky residue. Great leather protection from heavy dirty situations.
However, if you just need a good boot oil with decent protection without as much darkening, I'd suggest the Obenauf's leather oil.
I saw someone at a coffee shop wearing the same pair of Red Wings Iron Rangers that I had on and we complimented each other's choice of footwear. He asked me how long I had owned them and I told
him almost two years. He didn't believe me because mine looked nearly new and his looked trashed after less than a year.
He complained about how his feet were alwas wet and cold in the winter as well. I told him to get some Obenauf's LP and his problems would be solved.
I recently bought some new Chippewa steel toes for work. They aren't as nice as my Red Wings but they look 1000 times better with the first treatment of Obenauf's. I'm a customer for life.
I did 4 pairs of leather boots today and they were all at room temperature, around 75 degrees (Fahrenheit) and what I liked the most about this stuff is that the heat from your fingers melts it just enough for you to rub on the boots. I must have only used a tablespoon, maybe a little more, total for all of my boots so a little goes a long way. I also tested them out 24 hours later to see how water resistant they were and I can happily report that nothing got through and the water beads rolled off. It will take awhile for this stuff to be all used up, so when it's gone I'll be buying more :)
It will slightly darken your leather, so if you care about that, be aware of that. I'm more concerned about maintaining moisture and natural water resistance in my working boots than a specific shade of mahogany.
Use your fingers to apply - the heat from the friction and your body help the product to be absorbed. You can also use a hair dryer on low.
I do have to warn you that it will darken the leather and change the appearance. In the attached picture, the treated boot is on the left. It has since lightened somewhat from this initial picture.