Pressure Foot For Skiving Machine: What’s it, Types & Functions

Pressure foot for skiving machine

The pressure foot of the skiving machine comes in different varieties used for making different kinds of skives. It’s made in these varieties to help you achieve different kinds of skives with just a quick swap. In this article, we feature the pressure foot for the skiving machine, what it is, the types and skives it makes, and a couple of helpful tips.

The pressure foot is found on a skiving machine and it’s a curved piece of metal that presses the leather to the knife and determines the depth, width, and angle the leather will be skived. It has a thumbscrew or lever that allows the user to lower or raise the foot depending on the thickness of the leather.

The pressure foot is indeed an important part of the leather skiving machine and so we will continue this article with more details about it, types, functions, and a whole lot more. Keep reading to find out more.

The Pressure Foot for Skiving Machine

The pressure foot is one of the smallest components of the leather skiving machine but plays a massive role in the entire outcome of a skive. The pressure foot for the skiving machines are interchangeable by different simple foot device units.

You can make very simple adjustments to the distance between the pressure foot and the blade. The adjustments you will make will mainly depend on the thinness or thickness of the leather.

So the thinner the leather, the narrower the interval you will set. In addition, normally, the width of a skive depends on the width of the pressure foot and also the position of the guide.

The skiving machine generally follows a very simple principle of rotating it’s blade while the pressure foot presses the leather from the top so that the lower surface of the leather is cut as it’s pushed between the leather pressure foot and the knife.

One important tip on ensuring the effectiveness of your pressure foot at all times is to keep the base that touches the grain side of the leather, smooth and fine at all times. In an unusual circumstance of the base being rough could damage the grain side and may cause a rejection and wastage of the leather.

Types of Pressure Foot for Skiving Machines

The type, size, shape, and design of the pressure foot you will get will vary depending on the type of skive you would want to achieve or will be required to do.

The pressure foot is mainly made of metal or Teflon which is a material mostly used to coat non-stick cooking utensils. The Teflon pressure foot has a cooling characteristic even when on high temperature cause by the friction between pressure foot, knife, bottom feed roller and material fibers.

With the variety of pressure foot, we highlight according to the kind of skive you would want to do.

1. Pressure Foot Type For Fold and Split Skive

A fold skive is made to aid make folding the edges of leather much easier and professional looking. With the fold skive, the type of pressure foot that works best is a 50mm skive width with a guide. The guide must be fixed for fold skives in order to meet a required or preferred width of skive.

This type of pressure foot can be used to also make split cuts due to it’s wide 50mm surface without a guide. To use the 50mm skive width pressure foot to split leather, it must be placed parallel to the bottom of the feed roller.

2. Pressure Foot Type For Underlay Skive

The underlay alive is mainly done for lapped seams normally on the flesh side of leather. You will make an underlay skive if you’re looking to stitch together two pieces of leather by overlapping them. By doing the underlay skive, you would avoid ridges or bumps, or unevenness that would have otherwise caused problems for stitching.

For you to make an underlay skive, you will need a type of pressure foot that has the fore part raised and it’s back down on its surface to get the specified width and angle of skive. The skiving width of the pressure foot required for this must be between 2-3 mm behind the stitch marking line or the underlay margin. This is vital to give enough strength and durability to the seam.

3. Pressure Foot Type For Raw Edge Skive

The raw edge skive is a very common type of skive you would have to do. This is slightly reducing the thickness of the flesh side to make it, simply put, clean, tidy but still strong. It is also done to remove loose fibres from the edges of the leather.

To get the raw edge skive, a pressure foot similar to the one used for the underlay skive (that is pressure foot with fore part raised and it’s back down on its surface) that will help to get the specified width and angle of skive. The width guide should be set accordingly near the pressure foot to get a perfect raw edge skive.

4. Pressure Foot Type For Skiving Thicker Heavier Leather

The Pressure roller foot type is the most ideal used for skiving thick leather and coated materials like Thermoplastic and extremely heavy type of leathers.

The range and versatility of the pressure foot for skiving machines are enormous as it’s possible to find pressure foots that could make every possible kind of skive you may require like this pressure foot kit I found on Amazon. It’s really at a great price but you would want to check it out for it’s latest price since they always change.

Video Summary on Additional Types of Pressure Foot

You can watch this video to further understand the types and the level of versatility of the pressure foot

Functions of The Pressure Foot

  • The main function of the pressure foot is to press the leather material onto the knife of the skivng machine.
  • The pressure foot is used to determine the thickness that is going to be skived for a chosen type of pressure foot.
  • The pressure foot can also be used to determine the width and angle at which a skive can be done.
  • It’s a component that really helps to skive the very delicate, narrow edges, and the deep grooves on leather without which may have been impossible to skive.


Leather skiving in itself is a whole skill set on it’s own that every leather crafter should master. With that said, this article focus on the pressure foot and discussed what it is, some of the variety it comes in, it’s functions and a few helpful things in-between. Hope this article was useful to you.


Hi! I’m Kwabena, the owner and founder of Favored Leather. I’m a huge Leathercraft enthusiast and I’ve been that for almost 13 years now. I'm excited to share my experiences and all the new stuff I learn each day about leather craft, leather cleaning & care, and everything in-between!

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