Published on January 4th, 2017 | by makesupply5
Review: Crimson Leather Pricking Irons
This post is going to be a quick informal review of the Crimson Pricking Irons available from Crimson Hides. I’ve been following Crimson Hides on Instagram for a long time now have been intrigued by these tools ever since they released them. Up until the past year or 2 it seemed like for quality pricking irons it was Vergez Blanchard, Dixon, or bust. Now there are a handful of small companies in Singapore, South Korea, and Japan popping up offering high quality tools of all types to Leathercrafters.
What drew me to these Crimson Irons was that they seemed to be a hybrid of a traditional pricking iron and a diamond stitching chisel. Pricking irons like Vergez Blanchard are designed to lighly mark the surface of the leather which would be followed up by a diamond awl. Diamond Stitching Chisels are designed to be punched all the way through the leather with a mallet. I personally prefer using diamond chisels but the holes left can be chunky. If you are working on a project that requires a more “high end” aesthetic that is no bueno!
The Crimson Pricking Irons are so far proving to be a great middle ground. Lets take a photo journey through my first tests using the irons…
I opted to purchase the 3.85mm size in the 2, 5, 9 tooth iron configuration. To order you contact Crimson via e-mail and let them know what you are interested in. They are very friendly and responsive. Depending on where you live you have 2 options for shipping. Being that I am in the U.S. standard shipping would be 10-20 days. FedEx (quite a bit more expensive) was only a couple days in transit. As the impatient man that I am, I opted to upgrade for FedEx. The irons arrived packed securely in a small box with a lovely handwritten note.
These bad boys are ready to rock right out of the box. The teeth come very smooth and nicely polished. I managed to catch my thumb on the edge of a tooth while picking it up and it was enough to draw blood. From experience the best leather tools are the ones that can cut you in 1 second flat if youre not paying attention.
I whipped together a quick card holder and used the 9-tooth and 2-tooth to mark my holes. The irons leave a nice slotted hole that is slightly bigger than a pricking iron and way narrower than a diamond chisel. Just what I was looking for! This is the front side.
This is the back. Sorry for the photo I thought it was in focus when I took it. The exit holes on the back are also very clean. Not “blown out” like some diamond chisel can leave.
These 2 pictures are from the finished card holder (both the front side). I stitched this card holder using 532 waxed linen thread from Amy Roke Linen USA. Very nice stuff by the way!
The above photo is the back side of the card holder.
Here is a size comparison to the Craftool Diamond Stitching Chisel and Seiwa Diamond Chisel. Roughly all the same length. Biggest difference is the flat hand of the Crimson chisel vs the round knurled handles of the other 2.
Here is a comparison of the teeth of the 3 different chisels.
I punched some holes in this old prototype wallet to show the footprint of these 3 chisels. As you can see the Crimson irons leave a very small and sleek hole. The Seiwa holes are larger but keep a nice diamond shape. The Craftool leaves a larger and boxy-er looking hole.
Here I wanted to see what I thought would be the max thread size using the Crimson irons. This is some .8 Tiger Thread. In my opinion this is still too thick but taking it down to .6 would probably look great if you are into thicker thread style.
All in all I am really liking these irons. My only critique is that they are a little tougher to manuever if you have larger hands. Im used to the round knurled grip of the other diamond chisels but thats just a personal preference. Im scared of change… (lol).
Thanks for reading!