View Full Version : darkening an Edgewood girth

Mar. 28, 2011, 12:41 PM
HI all, have read all the posts about darkening bridles but am having trouble with my Edgewood removable sheepskin girth. I have used warm olive oil, Hydrophane, mink oil, neatsfoot oil etc etc. How best to darken this girth?

Mar. 28, 2011, 12:56 PM
Did you try the hydrophane darkening or just the regular hydrophane?

Mar. 28, 2011, 01:06 PM
My Edgewood girth was slow to darken, unlike my bridle. It is better now, although not super dark. I got the best result when I started using Walsh's Blue Ribbon oil. Blue Ribbon has a little stain in it, so its good for those hard to darken items. You might want to give the girth a good cleaning with Castile soap first, if you suspect it has any kind of coating that is preventing the oil from being absorbed. With mine I just cleaned and conditioned it a lot too, I don't like to over oil.

Mar. 28, 2011, 01:48 PM
regular hydrophane...

Mar. 28, 2011, 02:02 PM
Just FYI, I had a HECK of a time darkening my Edgewood girth last spring. You have to strip off the protective coating first. And since you’ve oiled it (like I had), you have to strip off that as well as the protective coating. Castile soap didn’t do it for me – I had to use ammonia. At first, diluted…then as I got more and more irritated…straight up. I had to strip it twice. I completely abused this thing (scrubbing with straight ammonia), but it came through fine. It bled ALL SORTS of red dye in the stripping process.

Once stripped, I starting oiling again. I used Hydrophane Darkening b/c I had it, but was about to switch to Blue Ribbon because of the trouble I was having. I think I put one coat on every day for 5 days, leaving it in the sun to darken and dry in between coats.

It became reasonably dark (instead of neon red) this way, although it still has a long way to go to match my havanna saddle and appropriately darkened Edgewood bridle and martingale. No idea why it was so much harder to darken than the rest of my Edgewood stuff.

Mar. 28, 2011, 02:08 PM
My experience has been that once you use hydrophane (non darkening) you're stuck at that color for a long long time. Multiple coats of extra virgin olive oil has always done the trick for me.

Mar. 28, 2011, 02:10 PM
hmmm you know what, maybe I didn't use it on this girth. I hope not! I have horrible luck darkening anything. The mink oil is the only thing that seemed to darken it a little bit, but it's SO red right now.