Restoration of Silver Parade saddles from the historic golden age of parades in the 1950s through 1970. Deterioration is extensive due to the age of these fine parade outfits. Preservation is a must."> WHY RESTORE Parade Saddles?
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Dusty Johnson
PLEASANT VALLEY
SADDLE SHOP
2870 W Granite Park Dr
Prescott, AZ  86305

Phone:(928) 515-3029

Silver Saddle

RESTORATION

"Why restore?  My Silver Saddle is in great condition !" 

 

I hear this statement from everyone and I am sure they believe it, but the truth is these parade saddles have all been created more than 50 years ago and they are deteriorating  due to their age.  Leather dries, cracks and has chemical reactions going on continuously without regard to the care and oil you give it.  Perfect environment is hard to find... the house dries it out; the garage is too damp; the barn has chemicals that harm it !!  The stitching is failing due to age with primarily the glue holding the pieces together which makes the stitching appear solid.  The copper (rivets in the conchos) is reacting with the acids in the leather and creating a waxy substance called "verdigris" which permeates throughout. Evidence of this shows up as "green goo" around the edges and on some of the plates.  These things greatly decrease the life, security and the value of the parade saddle.  Without skilled restoration these saddles will soon disappear forever.

Call me and let us discuss what it takes to preserve your investment in these wonderful saddles ... true icons of the American West of the 1940's and '50's.

 (click on any each picture to see greater details)

 

WHAT KIND OF SILVER IS IT?

 

STERLING SILVER

An alloy of silver 92% silver and 7.5% copper by weight.  Fine silver (99% pure) is too soft for large  objects. which is why copper is added.  As the purity of silver decreases the problem of corrosion (tarnishing) increases.

NICKEL SILVER (known as GERMAN SILVER)

An alloy of 60% copper, 20% nickel and 20% zinc.  Resembling sterling silver in shine and luster it contains NO silver content.  It is sometimes electro-plated with sterling silver or gold

MONEL

A trademarked name for a nickel alloy primarily composed of 70% nickel, 20% copper and 10% iron and manganese plus other trace minerals.  Though more expensive than stainless steel Monel is less expensive than Nickel Silver and polishes to a nice silver shine.

 

                

            
   
This shows a pair of Serapes being restored. Each plate must be removed and new rivets soldered in place (4 each), then holes punched in new leather. More new leather for liners follows plus stitching and attaching the straps and the drops. (click pictures for larger view)
deteriorated stitching       chemical reaction gone wild       stitches and glue gone

leather deteriorated            lining falling off drops           looked good --at first

 
Click on any picture for a larger view  

WHEN WERE THE LAST OF THESE SADDLES MADE?  WHERE WERE THEY MADE?

 

Owner said his saddle was "well cared for and oiled regularly". Look at the bottom of the Drop.  It looks OK but see what is behind the concho plates ?!

 

Ted Flowers made his saddles in Alexandria, Indiana.  His saddle shop was known as "The Spot Shop".  He stopped making saddles in the early 1970's and died in 1976.

 Bruce Lovins made his saddles in Alexandria, Kentucky.  He usually purchased very well made, high grade saddles and embellished them with his metalwork (Sterling Silver, German Silver and Monel).  He was an excellent craftsman and a very  good engraver.  He died of cancer in 1962.

This is a good example (left side to right side) of how polish and dent removal brings back the original luster