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Stiffening a Favorite old hat


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Have a felt Resistol my Wife bought me as a gift at least 18 years ago.  It is my "work on the property" hat for two thirds of the year.  I have had Randy at Law Dog Hats refurb it for me twice.  It is getting ratty enough that I'd like to take a chance on DIY to get a couple more years out of it.  Friendly and comfortable and broke in for sure.  Any one with experience?  It is black, so some of the the internet suggestions are a little scary.  Corn starch? Hairspray?  Experienced advice appreciated.  (I have a bunch of hats and could chuck it, but I still like it, a friend of years.)

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There is a stiffener for hats...check your local western wear stores

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If you are going to go the starch route, don't use anything you buy at a grocery store, etc.  Go to a quilting/fabric store and buy a quilt/fabric starch.  Most of the generally available spray starches are made from FOOD, yes food, like potatoes.  The problem with that is it will attract critters like weevils which will eat your hat. No kidding.  

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6 minutes ago, Calamity Kris said:

If you are going to go the starch route, don't use anything you buy at a grocery store, etc.  Go to a quilting/fabric store and buy a quilt/fabric starch.  Most of the generally available spray starches are made from FOOD, yes food, like potatoes.  The problem with that is it will attract critters like weevils which will eat your hat. No kidding.  

Thanks very much, fortunately the Wife is a serious Quilter!

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4 minutes ago, PowerRiverCowboy said:

Ahh , Hit up local western store pick up Hat stiffener, Too many years riding bulls , and sucks when your Black Gold gets trampled (yes I only wear Black Golds ) 

Thanks!  Nice, didn't know about them.  I get mine hand made by Randy  at Law Dog Hats in Billings for just a bit more money.  There is  something different about  a really good hat. Last time I was on a bull, it was mechanical and decades ago.  I stayed on despite serious operator efforts to throw me, but was bruised from ankle to ankle and everything between.  Good times!

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One part alcohol based shellac to eight parts denatured alcohol. Mix thoroughly and dispense out of a spray bottle.

 

 I think I may have done a couple thousand hats over the years with this recipe!

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38 minutes ago, Blackwater 53393 said:

One part alcohol based shellac to eight parts denatured alcohol. Mix thoroughly and dispense out of a spray bottle.

 

 I think I may have done a couple thousand hats over the years with this recipe!

Many thanks! 

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D58FB9F8-57DC-4E16-9722-4915BE95B92C.jpeg

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David Johnson (D Bar J Hats) stiffened one of mine at Border Town, a few years back, with denatured alcohol in a spray bottle. 

 

He told me to let it sit in the sun for a while until it dried.  It's still stiff today.

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Thanks for the ideas, it isn't quite a wreck yet, but I don't want to trouble the ever patient Randy with it.  I'll buy or make some goop and give it a try.  

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On 5/17/2022 at 10:29 PM, Blackwater 53393 said:

One part alcohol based shellac to eight parts denatured alcohol. Mix thoroughly and dispense out of a spray bottle.

 

 I think I may have done a couple thousand hats over the years with this recipe!

This one.

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