Do you ever wonder if the person you are living with is trying to kill you and burn down your shop? Maybe it’s a cold glimmer in their eye. Maybe it’s an odd penchant for keeping open containers of denatured alcohol near the wood stove. Maybe it’s putting lit incense on your oil covered, really expensive spoke cutting machine. Maybe instead of the spoke cutter, there’s incense jammed into a really dry, really old wood beam, with ashes falling on an equally old dry, dusty beam. All I am saying is: trust no one.
Back to Brooks Proofide. Proofide is made by a Wizard named Chad. Chad isn’t a wizard per se, but he does like to wear Wizards jerseys while at work. And he does work over a smoking kettle, in a decrepit tower which lurks at the far corner of the Brooks factory. He grew his beard for cool points, but then it just kept growing, and slowly turned grey.
The tiny slit windows of the tower’s sumit constantly issue forth a deep yellow cloud of steam. The lower windows are obscured by black, buzzing clouds. The shaft of the twisting, crumbling tower seems to vibrate and shift in and out focus. Within the tower, millions of bees populate the winding spiral stone staircase. Chad’s walk to work usually involves a few apologies as he steps on the occasional wayward bee. The walls of the staircase crawl with black and orange bees. The noise is deafening. A huge collective hum. Beyond a buzz. Like the earth itself is singing. Huge hives dangle from the walls and stair edges, wax dripping and pooling on the cold stone. Ancient clay pipes emerge from the biggest hives, pumping chunks of comb to the top of the tower. Sorta like that scene from the Matrix, or at least that's what Chad tells girls at the pub. In the top of the tower Chad rings the comb thru an old Maytag clothes wringer. The wax and honey separate out. He sells the honey to Sven, his buddy who makes sub par Mead for the Renn. Fair. Chad shovels the wax into his copper cauldron and melts it down slowly. He adds a few secret additives, mostly second hand candles that he picks up at Goodwill. The mixture simmers all day. As the sun sets, and not a moment sooner, Chad slowly and carefully fills these tiny 25 gram tins of Brooks Proofide. He is both envious and simultaneously nonplussed by the fact that Larry, in the next tower over, has a computerized Proofide machine. Larry never gets covered in wax. Larry never even steps on bees. He sits at a laptop, drinking endless cups of Tetleys, reading about the latest Manchester match. Larry fills the 40 grams tins. Or his machine does, at least.
Chad recommends Brooks Proofide as the ONLY leather preservative for use on leather saddles, regardless of the brand. See, you don’t want your leather to soften up. You just want it to stay hydrated. Leather is just skin, after all (don’t think too hard about that) and skin needs moisture, otherwise it’s gunna crack and dry out.
Proofide your saddle once a year. Just the top. Smear a small amount (pinkie tip) on your palms, warm it in your hands, then rub it hard into the saddle. Let it dry to a white film, then buff it out with your roommate’s socks. White ones work best.
You can use Proofide on all other leather bits. Bar bags, belts, shoes that don’t need to be waterproof (use snow seal for those), leather bar tape, that ostentatious leather baseball cap your mom got you for Christmas. Proofide does not break down leather fibers. It just helps them last longer.
Mostly beeswax, with some other stuff too.