Thinking of getting the best leather splitter machine for your leather work projects? Well, whether you’re a seasoned professional or a weekend warrior, you’re going to find great use for it.
So before you tackle your next leather work project, you need to figure out which tool is right for you. Whether you’re making belts, wallets, key fobs, coasters or bookbindings, a leather splitter machine will save you a lot of time, energy, while maintaining a high level professional look.
So, what are the best leather splitter machines? I did a thorough research on the leather splitter machines and the best ones I found are:
- C.S. Osborne Leather Splitter Machine No. 86 (Best Overall Splitter Machine)
- Eapmic Leather Splitter Machine (Best Budget Pick)
- Weaver Leather Economy Heritage Leather Skiver ( Best Great Value)
- C.S. Osborne Leather Splitter Machine No.84 (Best Large Size Splitter)
In addition to the list above, I have included a detailed review of each one of the leather splitter machines and a detailed guide to help you make an informed decision. Keep reading to find out more!
What is a Leather Splitter Machine?
A leather splitter machine is a tool or device you will use to split or in some cases skive the thickness of your leather down to a preferred weight for a specific project.
The leather splitter machine basically consists of a metal, steel, or iron framework, a hand crank, and most importantly a sharp blade that when thick and heavy leather is fed to is able to split down the leather evenly.
While the leather splitter tool is a professional tool, I must say it’s use is also ideal for beginners and can help you as a beginner to skip a lot of levels in terms of how your overall leather work is going to be professionally finished.
If you want to learn more about the leather splitter machine, you can check out a detailed guide I wrote earlier on what the leather splitter machine is. In this article, I talk about the types of splitter machines, and some awesome benefits of using it!
Buying Guide For Leather Splitter Machine
I have always known how invaluable getting the right tools for the right job is but usually there’s always going to be an obstacle and countless reasons not to get tools that will help improve the quality and quantity of work you produce.
How do I buy? What do I look out for? are probably some of the biggest questions you will encounter and an so I put together this guide to give you an overview of what to generally look at when getting a leather splitter machine.
This is to inspire a thought process when considering these kind of tools. Basically, I reckon you’re going to care about 4 main things – How much does it cost? How do I Position it in my work place? How sharp is the blade? How does the splitting work? and finally, how long will it last?
So as you can see, these are common questions you might be thinking of! So let’s jump in and take a look at these one after the other.
To a lot of professional crafters, price will not be a major factor, but I know how overwhelming it is for beginners, the number of tools you will have to get when starting out in leather work – with almost every tool seeming like that most important tool to start with.
I know this is also probably not your first time surfing the internet for tools and always having to take a rain check. But you’re here again because you know the value and how a tool like the leather splitter machine would do for your projects.
So what it really comes down to how much value you think this will bring to your craft and how much $$$$$ you’re willing to invest.
The general price range you can expect is the economically priced splitter machines will be between $150-200, the moderately priced ones will come around $300-600, while the high end splitters will cost you more than $700.
The next thing you will consider is to first figure out where you will mount your splitter and based on that choose the splitter the works well for your workspace.
Mounting the leather splitter machine in your workspace is important. In most cases you will require a dedicated space for the leather splitter machine you get while with others you will be able to clamp down, do your leather splitting, and unclamp to free up space.
But in all fairness, I will say 9 out of 10, you will have to create a space where you will mount your splitter machine with screws on your workbench for convenience and accessibility. These are especially with the leather splitting machines that have wider widths.
Now the bigger question! How sharp is it? How wide the blade is generally determines the widths of leather straps you will be able to split. So figure out the kind of leather work you do and how big or wide the patterns you cut are.
If you do a lot of strapping projects, like belts, and small leather projects like wallets, then a splitter with a 6 inch blade will work a lot of magic for you. But If you’re willing to invest a bit more, you can consider splitter machines with 8 inches blades so you can have more widths to work with.
The splitting action is the mechanism the leather splitter machine uses to split the leather. The splitting action on the leather splitter machine varies and there are two common actions that is the pull-action and a crank feed action.
With the pull type of action, the leather splitter machine is set to a required thickness after-which the leather is positioned and pulled to split the leather.
On the other hand, the leather splitter machine with a crank action will feed the the leather being split through the splitter machine as the crank is spun. While this type seem like a better option, they’re often made for heavy-duty splitter machines and are more expensive.
The durability of the leather splitter machine will mainly lean on the kind of construction used for the splitter machine and the quality of materials also used. These 2 determines how long the leather splitter machine will last.
The construction of the splitter machine is very important and while some brands will assemble different parts when producing the machine the very best splitter machines will have it’s framework forged or cast in a one piece of material like iron. The splitter machines that are cast (like the 6-8inches ones) tend to last longer than the ones with different are assembling parts.
Leather Splitter Machines – Reviews
After learning a bit about what to expect and look out for, let’s head over to a couple of the leather splitter machines I have researched. Follow along and see which one you like. So in no particular order!
1. C.S. Osborne Splitting Machine No. 86 (Best Overall Splitter Machine)
The number 86. C.S. Osborne Splitting Machine has been the flagship of the C.S Osborne brand which is a company that’s been around for close to 2 centuries. Their splitter is a professional leather splitter that’s made in USA and carries an original traditional design. You’re going to love the simplicity of the C.S. Osborne splitter machine.
This splitter machine is very convenient and offers the most simple way to mount it on a dedicated workbench if you have space using a set of sturdy screws. If you don’t have space, you can simply attach it to a piece of wood and clamp the wood to your workbench as and when you need the splitter machine.
The C.S. Osborne splitting machine comes with a 6 inch tungsten inlaid steel blade. The razor sharp blade sits on the very top of the machine held firmly in place by 2 strong blade screws.
It uses a hollow ground blade meaning the blade has to be sharpened professionally with a hollow ground sharpener machine.
The blade is not adjustable, so the depth of the cut is set by its machines wheel. It’s perfect for you if you’re a strap maker making belts, harnesses, and bridles.
This leather splitter machine comes with a paddle that releases the adjustable wheel so you can slot in the leather piece you intend splitting. This machine uses a pull-action to evenly split leather down to a preferred thickness.
The C.S. Osborne splitting machine is very durable and has been made in adherence to high-quality and safety standards – Quality standards that has carried this company for close to 2 centuries. This splitter machine has a sturdy cast iron frame and weighs about 96 ounce.
- Very easy to setup configure
- It can also be used as an edge skiver
- Very durable
- Moderately priced
- Made in the U.S in accordance to high quality standards
- You can easily remove its rollers to clean off any form of wax left behind from leathers like bridle leather
- Beautiful design
- Not suitable for really soft leather
If you’re interested in the C.S. Osborne Splitting Machine, you can check it out over here on Amazon for additional information.
2. Eapmic Leather Splitter (Best Budget Pick)
If you’re on a tight budget and are looking for a really powerful leather splitter machine, then the Eapmic Leather Splitter is the perfect tool for you. Don’t let is best budget tag fool you! It’s durable and can tackle any splitting you will require for your projects with ease just like all other high-end splitting tools.
The Eapmic Leather Splitter Machine can be mounted using the pair of screws it comes with and will require a dedicated table for it.
The blade of the Eapmic Leather Splitter is long and spans a long length of about 8 inches and is made of highly durable steel material that’s sharp – and can achieve precision split cuts. It’s very easy to bring this blade to ultra sharpness all it takes is just about 10 strops and your blade will be as good as new.
The splitting action on the Eapmic Leather Splitter machine is a pull-Action and it’s suitable for leather widths of less than 4 inches. It’s cutting thickness can be adjusted for repeated cuts of desired thickness.
The Eapmic Leather Splitter machine has a solid cast-iron body with a strong steel feed roller that’s precisely milled.
- It’s low priced
- Its very durable
- Wide blade for wide strap splits
- Easily adjustable to suit all leather thicknesses
- Easy making it sharp
- Nice design
- Comes with a comfortable wooden handle
- It doesn’t come with an instructional manual
If you’re interested in the Eapmic Leather Splitter machine, you can check it out over here on Amazon!
3. Weaver Leather Economy Heritage Leather Skiver ( Best Great Value)
Weaver leather is one of the staple leather work companies and has a long standing history when it comes to making high quality leather work tools. The Weaver leather splitter machine is next on my list for three main reasons – price, beautiful design, and high-quality.
The Weaver Leather Economy Heritage Leather Skiver comes with 4 strong screws that you can use to mount the splitter onto your workbench in a very sturdy fashion.
This leather splitter machine comes with a 6 inch precision ground blade that’s super sharp and also very easy to strop. However, when the blade dulls out, you will be able to send it over to Weaver leather for tailored sharpening especially if you’re in the U.S.
The Weaver leather splitter machine features a pull-action to split leather. It has an adjustable handle that helps with quick and easy lap skiving. This makes it easy to make repeated splits.
This splitter machine is a durable single piece cast, has a sturdy wooden handle, and a stainless steel bar that ensures a sturdy skive on the leather.
- Nice beautiful design
- Sturdy construction
- Moderately priced
- Has a secured finger guard
- Very portable
- Easy to mount
- Very Easy to make adjustments
- Makes clean split shaves
If you’re interested in the Weaver leather splitter machine, you can check it out over here on Amazon! However, I found the price for this tool to be slightly cheaper on the official Weaver Leather website. Weigh both platforms especially with the shipping charges and go for it.
4. C.S. Osborne Splitting Machine No.84 (Best Large Size Splitter)
Another model from C.S Osborne yet again has made it to my list of the best leather splitter machines. The C.S. Osborne number 84 splitter machine is the largest leather splitter machine from C.S. Osborne.
This is by far one of the classic leather splitter machines you will fine today. Not only is the C.S. Osborne Splitting Machine No.84 a highly efficient machine, it’s also an intricate work of art.
This tool, like all others, can be mounted using screws on a wooden workbench so that it’s sturdy to withstand all the leather pulling and the handle pushing.
The blade for the C.S. Osborne Splitting Machine No.84 is an extremely sharp 8 inch hologram inlaid tungsten steel just like the number 86 C.S. Osborne leather splitter machine.
The splitting action for this tool is also a pull-action. One unique feature of this leather splitter machine is that the handle can be twisted so you can make adjustments for skiving widths and thickness.
Another great thing about this model is that it’s has a lock feature on its handle that allows you to lock in on a preferred thickness setting so you can pull the leather through the splitter machine especially if you have to use both hands.
To ensure the very best quality, C.S Osborne makes all components of this machine in house. One of the most important components, the roller is CNC engineered for durability and sturdiness – it serves as a guide for the wide heavyweight leathers you will be splitting through the machine.
- Comes with a safety bar to protect the user from its blades
- It has a lock action that help to hold a thickness in position
- It’s a heavy-duty machine
- It can be used both as a splitter and skiver eg. perfect for step skiving
- Splits larger pieces of leather easily
- You can use both hands or one hand with this tool
- Not suitable for really soft leather
If you’re interested in the C.S. Osborne number 84 splitter machine, you can check it out over here on Amazon.
With several options available on the market today, this article offers you the very best to choose from. While these machine will do almost the same thing, the important thing to remember is that each are more suited for certain applications.
Considering the value this machine is going to add to the quality of leather work you produce, you can be reassured that whichever machine you select from my researched list is going to be the very best you can have on the market.