Tutorial Another Kangaroo Strop

Discussion in 'Tutorials' started by kellykungfu, Jan 7, 2013.

  1. kellykungfu

    kellykungfu New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    Thought I would share my step by step instructions on creating my very own kangaroo strop. I purchased the kangaroo hide, Chicago screw, dee rings, snap clip, extra leather and dye from Tandy Leathers. The contact cement was from Lowes.

    Picture of the kangaroo hide with a tape measure. This hide was a tad more than 5 square feet.

    Measuring and marking for maximum yield.

    Clamped the leather down on a temporary work bench with straight edge. I just used a regular razor blade to do the cut. I pushed down hard and against the straight edge for a clean cut.

    Hard to tell, but to the left of the dee ring is a short piece of leather belt blank that was dyed black and cut to the same width of the strop. This was contact cemented to the strop.

    The dee ring was cut with a hack saw and then it was bent just enough so that the clip could slide into it and then it was bent back to shape. I also added a few wraps of electrical tape so that the cut edge wouldn't touch the strop.


    Close up picture of the finished product.

    Well you might wonder what the rest of the hide is going to be used for huh?? Well, I'm into sharpening knives too, so I made a bunch of pasted strops to some left over bamboo flooring that I had.

    Picture of the full length of the bamboo flooring. Its very straight and flat and even has a glued cork backing. Got this from Costco.

    Cut to length and width and also sanded to roughen up the top so that the contact cement has something to stick to.

    Pieces laid out to minimize waste. The area closest to the bottom will be saved for my next two straight razor strops for the future.


    Picture of the finished pasted strops. The left one has some rouge on it and the one of the right is just the plain leather. Both of them work well to polish an already sharp knife to super sharpness. Instead of using copier paper for a cut test(copier paper is thick and any knife of reasonable sharpness can cut) I use magazine pages instead as it takes a very nice edge to cut. A very sharp knife will cut the page lengthwise. Only a super sharp knife will cut the page width wise. Another test is to take the magazine page and make a U shape. A very sharp knife will be able to cut the the U without skipping.


    Hope this step by step tutorial helps anyone thinking about making their own strop.
  2. Hanzo

    Hanzo Well-Known Member

    Ingenious is the only word I can come up with for this project. :)
    alpla444 likes this.
  3. 178-bplatoon

    178-bplatoon Well-Known Member

    Great idea, wish I could see the pics though??? :)
  4. GDCarrington

    GDCarrington Burma Shave

    Excellent work.

    I can see the pictures.
  5. Monkeylord

    Monkeylord The Lather Lord

  6. Swigman

    Swigman New Member


    Really nice work and a helpful tutorial.

    What is the thickness of the kangaroo hide?

    I was hoping it might be thin enough to make a replacement strop for a Vintage Valet Auto-Strop razor which has a really thin stop that has to fit between rollers.

  7. kellykungfu

    kellykungfu New Member

    Thanks everyone for the comments. It was actually a fun project.

    I'm not good at estimating thickness. I just took some copier/printer paper and measured it with that. On average, kangaroo hide is about the same as the thickness of 10 sheets of paper. Kangaroo hide is very flexible and would work well with the Aut0-Strop, although I've only seen pics of it and never in real life.
  8. Swigman

    Swigman New Member


    Thanks for your quick reply. I measured 10 sheets of my printer/copier paper and they add up to 0.040" thick. I have an old Auto-Strop strop and it measures 0.057" thick. Which in its original condition probably measured less. So the kangaroo leather is a good candidate for Auto Strop strops both in thickness and suppleness. And the fact there is a fellow in England that also makes them of kangaroo leather inspires me like you to try making my own.

    I did not want to experiment using my only original strop because the Auto-Strop razor has a reputation of cutting strops if the stropping is not done very carefully. Now if I make my own I can afford to experiment.

    I reluctantly decided the only way to get precise dimensions was to take my NOS Auto-Strop from its antique Cellophane wrapping and measure it.
    0.057" thick X 1 9/16" wide X 15 1/4" long.
    One end of the strop is cut to a "Vee" point with additional scalloped cut outs on both sides for threading into the razor. The other end has a metal tab that both clamps the end and has the attachment for a wall hook loop. The loop appears to be made from 1/16" diameter plaited shoe string.

    Thanks for your help
  9. kellykungfu

    kellykungfu New Member

    Hi Everyone,

    Here is an update. I used the strop for about a week and so far so good. Compared to my Tony Miller strop, its hard to tell the difference in sharpness for the straight razor. The major difference is how thin the kangaroo leather is. So if you can get by the funky hollow like sound when stropping then you might like roo leather :) Another thing that I was worried about during the planning phase was the width. I made it 2 3/4 inches wide and was afraid that it might cup when pulled tight. I think the extra belt leather blank that was contact cemented helps keep even pressure across the width and theres no cupping even if it is pulled really tight. Hope this helps anyone thats interested in making one.
    PLANofMAN likes this.
  10. Sara-s

    Sara-s This Pun for Hire

    Very impressive & creative use of the hide. Perhaps some folks here would like to know where you got the hide from.
  11. thevez2

    thevez2 uses Gillette's new Tarantula Razor - 8 blades!!

    He said it came from Tandy Leather. I made a strop using a very similar method from cowhide I got from Tandy.
  12. Sara-s

    Sara-s This Pun for Hire

    Oops... I missed that. Thanks.
  13. oldtrout

    oldtrout Well-Known Member

    Sir, I applaud you and the kangaroo.
    Great job!
  14. macaronus

    macaronus Sir Nice-a-Lot

    Great post! Thanks for sharing!
  15. pmark3242

    pmark3242 New Member

    This is very good article. I am very Impressed
  16. RyX

    RyX DoH!

    Agreed @pmark3242 . Glad you joined us! If you can make time to pass by the Welcome Center there's lots of friendly folks that would like to greet you.
    TSD had quite the deep database of knowledge. It's a shame that the OP's images didn't survive the test of time. His descriptions give enough information that a crafty person might give this project a go.[​IMG]

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