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Old February 7, 2012, 10:21 AM   #1
Sea Buck
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Moldy Holsters

I went to a box of old holsters and rifle slings for a temporary replacement of my 1911 holster that came up with a broken snap and to my disgust I found a coating of white mold on all of them. How do I get rid of it and treat the leather? Thanks.
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Old February 7, 2012, 11:37 AM   #2
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When I got a crudded over leather holster with my TTC, I just threw it in the clothes washer with regular clothes detergent in cold water. I then let it air dry. Then I rubbed mink oil into it.
Turned out ok.
It was surplus, so I was prepared to lose it.
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Old February 7, 2012, 01:20 PM   #3
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Vinegar will kill the mold spores,,,

Make a 50/50 mix of vinegar and water,,,
Use a clean sponge and scrub the leather real well.

Wipe the holsters dry and then let them air dry completely,,,
Use a light coat of neatsfoot oil to condition the leather.

I prefer and use pure neatsfoot oil,,,
Any commercial leather conditioner will work,,,
The trick is to not use too much of whatever you choose.

But the vinegar will definitely kill the mold spores,,,
Just make sure you get it all with the sponge.

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Old February 7, 2012, 05:12 PM   #4
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I like Farnam Leather New for general leather cleaning. Its a spray on glycerin saddle soap. Just about any farm, tack or feed store probably has it (tractor supply does).
Thats probably all I would do to a holster. It will clean and lightly condition it. A holster needs to be rigid and hold its shape well and it isn't generally recommended to use oils or anything that will soften them.
Fix it right the first time...
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Old February 7, 2012, 06:34 PM   #5
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I had some leather knife sheaths that got all mold on me (bad storage on my part). I cleaned them with a mixture of Murphy's oil soap in water with some liquid lysol added as a mildew/mold killer. I cleaned them, then let it sit in a fresh batch overnight. Next day, I cleaned them again and hung them up to dry. Seemed to work out OK. Several years later, they are still in use.
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Old February 8, 2012, 04:13 PM   #6
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I pretty much do what Aarondhgraham does except I use Ballistol instead of neatsfoot oil.
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Old February 9, 2012, 12:37 AM   #7
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Care & cleaning of holsters-gear...

For most jobs, a light amount of Ballistol should clean/protect most holsters or related gear(handcuff cases, mag holders, etc).
I've used Ballistol often since 1997 or so.
For nylon rigs, use a small amount of a dish washing soap or a liquid product like Tide or Cheer(avoid bleach).
Let the cleaned items air dry.
John Bianchi, wrote a practical guide for leather care/duty gear cleaning.
Armor-All or some Ballistol works well on polymer & Kydex too.
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