Caring for Your (New) Whip

It isn’t all that hard to cope with a kangaroo leather whip; most of it is pretty straight forward. I’ll just list a few tips and tricks here, and if you have questions, naturally send me an email and I’ll do my best for you.

First, when you get your new whip, you’ll notice that it’s rather stiff. This is normal, not to worry, as you use your whip it will “work in” as the term is called, becoming more supple over time. How long? Depends on the whip, of course, and how much you use it. But figure anywhere from a year to two years before a new whip finishes working in, bearing in mind that the whip will START working in the moment you start using it. What that means is the whip isn’t going to stay stiff clear up until exactly one year later and then suddenly BANG! it’s worked in–it will happen gradually over time, again depending on how much you use it.

Don’t force your new whip. Don’t crank down on the thong like the whip is Gumby, don’t tie it in a knot, don’t run over it with a truck, and especially don’t slather it with conditioner in the mistaken belief that this will soften the whip and speed the working in process. It won’t, it will just gum up your overlay and turn your whip into a vacuum cleaner, as it will now attract every spec of dirt for miles around. The ONLY thing that will work your whip in is to use it as you normally would. I’d say start out with the main focus on doing volleys–you can crack it now and again if you like, but don’t make that the main business until later when the whip has become more supple.

FYI: I pack all my whips with Obenauf’s Heavy Duty LP. If I’m not worried about darkening the leather, I’ll also use it on the overlay, or if I AM worried about darkening the leather, I’ll use Fiebing’s on the overlay. Your whip is greased and ready to go on arrival, and you should only need to apply a very light touch up coat of conditioner maybe 2 to 3 times a year, depending on your climate.

I also stuff all my falls with Obenauf’s, right up to the eyeballs, yet you should always condition your fall (if you have one) after each use. I use Obenauf’s especially for my falls because it’s designed to help leather that takes a lot of abuse, and if you want to try it, just Google it, it’s pretty easy to find.

(Click here if you’d like to try a 2oz jar of Obenauf’s: 2 oz Jar of Leather Conditioner)

I usually store my whips by either hanging them straight down from their wrist strap or hanger if it has one, or by laying the thong lengthwise across a series of hooks on the wall. I don’t usually store them coiled up if I can avoid it, especially if they’re new. Hangers or hooks, either will work just fine, that’s up to you.

If you have any questions, again, shoot me an email and I’ll try to answer for you.

Best!

DM

How to Measure a Whip, Mojave Outliers Style

Naturally when ordering a whip, one of the first and most basic things you want to know is “how long is it?” There is some debate about how to measure the length of a whip, so what I’m going to do here is tell you how I do it here at Mojave Outliers, which method is generally the standard, except that I will clarify on one point, which is how to measure a signal whip that has a replaceable cracker vs a signal whip that has a braided in cracker–but I get ahead of myself. See below:

Bullwhips and snake whips, both of which have falls, are measured from the butt of the heel knot to the tail of the thong, not including the fall and cracker. So, the TOTAL length of an 8ft bullwhip with a 30″ fall and 10″ cracker would be 11ft 6″ long.

Stock whips and cow whips actually have TWO measurements, one is the handle, and the other is the thong. So to get the total length of, for example, a 4ft stock whip you need to measure the thong, and then add the length of the handle, PLUS the length of the fall and cracker. I.e., a 4ft stock whip with a 20″ handle and a 24″ fall with 8″ cracker would, in total, be 8′ 4″ long, if my math is correct.

A signal whip with a braided in cracker is measured from the butt of the heel knot all the way to the end of the cracker. So, a 4ft signal whip with braided in cracker would be 4 feet long INCLUDING the cracker. (Usually the only time I do braided in crackers is if I’m repairing a whip made by someone else.)

A signal whip (or hybrid signal whip) with a replaceable cracker is measured from the heel knot to the end of the thong, NOT including the cracker. So, for example, a 4ft signal whip with a replaceable 8″ cracker would be in total 4 feet 8 inches long.

And there you have it in a nutshell. If you have any questions this didn’t answer, naturally send me an email and we’ll get you sorted out.

Cheers!

DM

Adam Winrich Video

Check this out! Adam Winrich was kind enough to make a short video of himself as he throws one of my whips! In this case he’s throwing a 3 foot, 16 plait black kangaroo leather snake whip. Not bad for a “little black whip,” eh?!! Woot!

Testimonials (and more pics!)

And here we have the odd glowing remark sent my way, in the captions of each of the photos where applicable! In addition, this page is under construction, to explain why there’re only a few pics so far–I have to go hunt down what folks have said! So stayed tuned…

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Chocolate Deerskin Flogger

An 8″ flogger done in dark whiskey kangaroo hide on the handle (12 plait bird’s eye), with a double helping of buttery soft deerskin falls. Total length is about 27.5″.

Of course here we have an exception to the testimonial in the caption, but this one was too long to fit as a caption.

“Just last week, a friend of mine received a gorgeous, custom-made, deerskin flogger handcrafted by you. We both appreciated your gifted artistry immediately upon first inspection. As I am usually on the receiving end of the dance, the sensorial aspect of a whip or flogger is what affects me the most. Honestly, the quality and uniqueness of your work has surpassed all floggers I’ve encountered thus far: the tingling feel of the buttery-soft falls against my skin; the sweet smell of the deerskin leather across my face; the hypnotic sound of the handle’s rattle; the image of the “fan of fingering falls” across my body… Sublime, all of it.

Second, I want to add a comment directed at others like me, those people who aren’t familiar with all the technical aspects, people with little experience handling floggers. I had the opportunity to share the experience with my friend. I’ve shied away from holding floggers in the past; usually they’re too heavy, awkward, and simply unmanageable for me as a novice. Within minutes of holding your deerskin flogger, it felt like it was a natural extension of my body. The balance of weight, the girth and kangaroo leather plait of the handle, the natural pattern of the falls, overall comfort – each of these elements helped my confidence and creativity soar. In my personal experience, this flogger could be as soft as a breeze or used in way where I can feel a greater impact. My friend (and it practically being my first time leading the dance) said it felt like the greatest massage ever. I believe he started flying after just a few minutes, but I am certain he started to moan with pleasure immediately! And an hour later, I still had the strength and focus to hold the space inspired by the flogger.

Finally, although the flogger connected my friend and I, the energy between us was as intimate as if we were simply touching, skin against skin: the flogger became the perfect conduit as it slowly blended into the background – this “blur” being a desired and predictable result when the highest quality of materials is married to undeniable talent. If you like to support small, independent craftspeople, Mojave Outliers is a perfect choice. You can feel the love infused in this flogger. Its energy is intoxicating. Its quality is off the charts.

Pros: Amazingly supple falls; range from a literal breeze to greater impact; well-balanced; ease of handle maneuvering; weight; high quality materials; sensuous design; top-shelf craftsmanship; excellent piece for both beginners and flogger aficionados, outstanding value.

Cons: None. (Well, maybe it would be nice if it came in pairs!)”

3ft 16 plait Mini Bull

Email sent from client: “Just wanted to let you know that I killed a fuckin annoying buzzing mosquito with my mini bull!
Talk about a precision instrument! :)
You’re the best!”

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Kahlua Sunset Budget Boudoir mini pocket snake whip

Client testimonial: “All I can say it oh my goodness! This is one of the most beautiful things I have ever had the pleasure of seeing. Much less owning. The craftmanship is out of this world. Thank you so very much for your efforts you are truly an artist. And I am sure I will be making another purchase ASAP…or geting on the the waiting list. Your the greatest!!” Presenting the Kahlua Sunset whip! This is a Budget Boudoir mini pocket snake whip, plaited in dark brown as the base color with red & roan half chevrons. Specs: 3 ft, 12 plait, shot loaded thong, with a 24″ latigo fall and flame colored red & orange nylon cracker.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers 5ft 24 plait Mountain Sierra King snake whip

Testimonials from client(s): “Just got her Minx!! The weight is perfect!!! Just like throwing a dart!!” 5ft 24 plait “Mountain Sierra King” snake whip, 30″ tapered latigo fall, black red and white nylon cracker, plaited in red black and white kangaroo leather.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Budget Boudoir Mini Pocket Snake Whip Licorice Whip May 2015

Testimonials from client(s): “Andddddd… She has arrived! Even prettier in person. Oh and so sweet and so much fun! Easy on my arthritic hands, nice little crack… :-D” 3ft 12 plait Budget Boudoir mini pocket snake whip in black, red and purple kangaroo hide, shot loaded, 24″ tapered latigo fall, nylon cracker.

Mojave Outliers Whip Makers 5ft 24 plait Navy & Natural Kangaroo Leather Snake Whip

Testimonial from client(s): “…my amazing whip just arrived. While I consider myself pretty good at having a mental picture that resembles an actual item…. I was waaaay off the mark. Honestly, this amazing whip is far superior to anything I have ever seen or held. Just could not be more pleased.” “Damn but you do some beautiful work!” “You legend. This is f***ing gorgeous.” A 5ft 24 plait navy & natural kangaroo leather snake whip in alternating chevrons, shot loaded, 30″ tapered latigo fall and nylon cracker.

How to Order Something From Mojave Outliers Whipmakers

Yes, I am now accepting custom orders again, yay! However, I’ve made changes from how I was doing it before, so read carefully.

I’ve invented what I call my “Interested Parties” list. On this list I take down your contact information and a description of the whip you’d like me to build for you. Then, when I’m ready to start your build, I contact you to find out if you’re still interested. No money changes hands, and in the meantime, you’re free to shop with other whip makers if you like. Once I’ve completed your build, THEN I will send you a PayPal invoice.

My queue is longish, varying between 8 months to a year (and sometimes longer, especially during the holiday season for instance), which is actually pretty normal for whip makers. Part of the time I spend in my shop I build smaller spec items, because this helps me even out the cash flow in between custom orders. The idea behind the “Interested Parties” list is to keep us both flexible. I need to be able to control my work flow, and naturally you need to control your cash flow, so not having a debt between us until I’m ready to ship seems to me the best way to go. What this translates to is that if you’re on my “Interested Parties” list, that doesn’t mean there’s a contract between us such that I’m going to build your whip by a specific date, it just means that I’ll check that list FIRST before I do my next build. The advantage to you is that you’re not out a bunch of cash at the outset (some folks use the wait time to save up for their whip, which I think is quite clever), and you’re not “locked in” to your purchase with me–you can shop if you like, as I said above.

Naturally if you have questions about this, send me an email at desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com. And if you’d like to place a custom order, why, then send me an email at desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com, and we’ll get your details sorted!

Copy and paste version: desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com

Payments and Shipping

Payment is via PayPal, so don’t worry about sending a payment until after you and I have talked and sorted out all the details. I can give you a quote for your build, of course, but typically I don’t send an invoice until I’m ready to start your build. I can also give you an idea of what the shipping will be, but since the post office tends to raise its rates pretty much by surprise, then when I actually send you the invoice, I will re-calculate the shipping at that time. If there is a change in shipping costs, I’ll make sure you’re aware of it. Naturally, the invoice needs to be paid in full before I ship your whip to you.

As for shipping, domestically so far I use the United States Postal Service (USPS) exclusively. For tiny items (like the Baby Basilisk) I can ship First Class, but for most everything else I use Priority Mail, which includes tracking and tends to be a lot faster.

For international shipping, I use USPS Priority Mail International, which takes about 6 to 10 days to deliver. While the package is traveling in the US, you can track it using the USPS postal tracking site. Once it crosses the border, then in MOST cases you can simply use that country’s postal service to track the package using the same tracking number (which also happens to be the customs form number). I do NOT use First Class for international shipping, because they HAVE lost packages when I’ve done so.

International shipping also entails customs and other taxes for you, the receiver, based on the declared value of the item you’re receiving, payment of which is between you and your customs officials. Please do not ask me to risk my livelihood by fudging the numbers on the customs form for your order.

As always, if you have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask!

Kangaroo Leather Baby Basilisk Mini Dragon’s Tongue

Baby Basilisk mini Dragon's Tongue

And here we have a spot for weird funky stuff that (so far) doesn’t fit anywhere else.

Presenting the Baby Basilisk! A dainty morsel that packs a serious sting, and leaves welts effortlessly.

I found this out by accident when my partner snapped me on the arm with a piece of scrap motorcycle leather. We could still see the mark two days later (and yeah, you should see the other guy). Of course I jumped into the Walter Mitty R&D Lab immediately, and came up with this.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Baby Basilisk dragon's tongue long 150

A teeny tiny dragon’s tongue! It’s modeled after my flogger handles (please note that I recently stopped offering floggers in favor of focusing on making whips), but in miniature: the handle is 5 inches long, shot-loaded, 12 plaited in kangaroo hide, with red heel and tail knots and a short flat braid hanger. The tail itself, about 11 inches long, is “motorcycle garment” cowhide–very soft and supple. But when cut in the classic elongated Queen of Spades shape, and snapped perkily, there is NOTHING soft about it! Hence the Basilisk soubriquet.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Baby Basilisk dragon's tongue long 150

Available now, a Baby Basilisk. The handle is a scaled down version of my flogger handles, 5 inches long, shot loaded, 12 plaited in black and red kangaroo hide. The tongue is about 11 inches long, cut from “motorcycle garment” cowhide, $75.00.

Make sure you have a bag of frozen peas handy.

In any case, this is a very nice, close quarters, tender parts instrument for $75.00.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Baby Basilisk Bon Bons

Naturally, you can have one custom-made, just bear in mind that I only do Baby Basilisks on spec. Just send me an email, and I’ll note down your interest–then when I’m ready to make another batch, I’ll contact you to make sure you’re still interested.

Copy and paste version: desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com

Also, bling happens! For an extra $5 bucks, you can add up to three synthesized crystal rhinestones to your Basilisk, like this:

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Baby Basilisk Purple with Bling

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Baby Basilisk Black with Purple Knots Bling

Kangaroo Leather Cat o’nine tails & Western Quirts

Cat o'nine tails and Quirt Cover

Copy and paste version: desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com

First, the pricing and ordering information just to keep things easy to find! Details about cats and quirts follows.

Cat o’nine tails Western Quirt

12 plait

$425

$220

16 plait

$475

$250

16 plait spiral

$525

$350

24 plait spiral

$850

$425

Next, a link to a blog I wrote on the CONSTRUCTION of a cat o’nine tails, just in case you’re wondering about the number of clams it takes to pry one out of me:

Birth of a Felinus Feline

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Cat o nine tails for Love Revolution

12 plait spiral cat o’nine tails, roughly 4 feet long; tails are 24-26 inches, handle is about 18-20 inches, black kangaroo hide on the handle with red kangaroo hide tails in a 4 plait round braid–nine of them, of course!

The cat o’nine tails pictured in the photo above is a 20 strand plait model; the handle is solid black with a pineapple knot at each end, and the tails are red and black kangaroo leather. The handle is flexible (though still satisfyingly rigid), about 20 inches long (not counting the wrist strap), just under an inch in diameter at the butt end, and has an 16 inch shot bag inside to give it a little weight. The nine tails are each a 4 strand round plait about 24 inches long total, ending in crown knots with the last additional 6 inches fanning out into lovely leather lace. All total the cat is nearly 4ft long. If you’ve raised an eyebrow at the pricing, understand that just the tails are about 144 feet of leather lace, which is about what I’d cut for the bellies and a good chunk of the overlay for a 5ft bullwhip with two plaited bellies and the overlay, and then there is the handle build besides, so yeah, I charge a pretty penny for cats. Huge amount of material and labor! To be completely clear, I am not going to apologize for the pricing.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers Blue and Roan Cat o nine tails

This cat was plaited using the “spiral” method, in an “Egyptian” motif.

Western Quirts are made quite similarly to the Cat o’nine tails, except of course there is a leather split braided slapper on the end in place of the tails, or I can create an 8 plait loop at the end of the handle and bend the slapper through, securing it with a small screw back concho (see photos below)…

Quirt with Concho

This is an example of a quirt with an 8 strand plaited loop and a slapper bent through it secured with a screw back concho.

Quirt with concho front

Detail shot of the front side of the slapper.

Quirt with Concho back

Detail of the back side of the slapper…

Trade In Your Whip (or crop, quirt, etc.)!

Copy and paste version: desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com

For those of you who have purchased a Budget Boudoir mini pocket snake whip (or any of my whips, really) and find that you’ve outgrown it, you can return it to me for a credit against a new whip purchase. Trade in value will of course depend on the age and condition of the whip, and for a Budget Boudoir whip I expect the trade in value will range between $25 to $100 towards a new whip (no cash, sorry, I don’t have any of that stuff!). Others of my whips will be evaluated on an individual basis.

IF you have a whip made by someone ELSE you would like me to consider for a trade in towards the value of a new whip from me, feel free to ask me about it. And yes, I do like the odd bit of weird vintage stuff, so don’t be shy!

Typically what I like is for you to send me pictures of your whip to start with; if it looks like it might be workable then at that point I’ll have you ship it to me for a final appraisal. When you take pics, give me a shot of the whole whip, loosely arranged with no hidden bits (as best you can manage), as well as detail shots of the handle and heel knot, thong, tail, fall (if applicable) and cracker areas of the whip.

Whether or not I accept a whip for trade in will depend solely on my appraisal of the whip in person. If I decide, once I examine the whip in person, that the whip is not suitable as a trade in, I’ll let you know and ship it back to you on my nickel. If I do find it workable, then the figure I offer is final (no dickering!). If you decide you would prefer to keep your whip after I’ve given you a trade in figure, that’s of course no problem; again, I’ll ship it back to you.

If and as traded in whips become available, assuming I don’t keep it for myself, and AFTER I’ve made any repairs and reconditioned them, I will offer it for sale on the Ready Now Gallery (see left side menu), so keep an eye peeled if you’re looking for a nice whip on a budget!

Kangaroo Leather Target Hybrid Signal Whips

Hybrid Signal Whips Cover

Copy and paste version: desert.minx@mojaveoutliers.com

What is a hybrid signal whip? It is, simply put, a whip with the cracker attached directly to the thong as usual (no fall), but which has a rigid handle. Other names for this are “target hybrid” or “target signal,” because of course the rigid handle makes the whip a little easier to manage in terms of accuracy.

You can choose any length handle from 4 to 8 inches without affecting the price. See the chart below for more details.

Hybrid Signal Whips
12 plait 16 plait 20 plait 24 plait
3 feet $350 $375 Not Available Not Available
4 feet $370 $395 $435 $455
5 feet $390 $415 $455 $475

For spiral plaiting, talk to me FIRST, but figure on adding about $75-$100 to the price of the whip (and be prepared to receive a work of art!).

4ft 16 plait BW Hybrid Signal Whips Handle Detail Mojave Outliers

A pair of 4ft 16 plait hybrid signals in black and white…

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers 4ft 16 plait hyb sig b and w JH2

The second of the pair of 4ft 16 plait hybrid signals pictured above…

Purple Kangaroo Leather Hybrid Signal Whip

A lovely 4ft 16 plait hybrid signal whip in purple kangaroo leather, short herringbone on the handle…

Mojave Outliers 4ft Black Red Target Hybrid Signal 150

This is a 4 foot 16 plait hybrid signal whip done in red and black kangaroo hide with an alternating chevron pattern, shot loaded core, and replaceable cracker. The handle has a 6 inch steel core.

Mojave Outliers 4ft 12 plait Black Red Target Hybrid Signal Whip 150

This is a 4 foot, 12 plait Hybrid Target Signal whip in red and black kangaroo leather. Bird’s Eye plaiting on the handle and regular herringbone plait on the thong. The replaceable cracker in THIS rendition is red nylon.

4ft 16 plait W&B Hybrid Signal

Recently completed, this is a 4 ft, 16 plait hybrid target signal whip in whiskey and black kangaroo leather. The Bird’s eye pattern on the handle is modified to account for the extra strands, and is then stabilized with short herringbone at the heel. Nice, eh? This is also an example of a more rounded heel knot, per request by the client who ordered this whip.

JD Hybrid Target Signal Whip

THIS little beauty is a 24 strand spiral plait in brandy and whiskey kangaroo leather, at 4 ft long, with a 6″steel core handle.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers 18 plait 4ft Hybrid Target Signal Whip

This one is a little unusual in that it is an 18 plait, rather than the more usual 16 or 24 plait. The plaiting method is spiral, with an accent on the thong. The whip is 4ft long with a 6″ steel core handle, thong is shot loaded.

4ft 24 plait Hybrid Signal DH 2

4ft 24 plait hybrid signal whip, spiral plaited in navy blue and natural kangaroo hide.

5ft 24 plait Black and Natural Hybrid Signal

This is a 5ft 24 plait hybrid signal aka “Frankenconda” (or “Frickenconda” as it sometimes was), weighing in at over a pound, with heel diameter of 25.97mm, which includes an extra plaited belly. Don’t drop it on your toe! Too, THIS one has a 15″ twisted Dyneema cracker on it. Yes, we QA’d the whip, and anyone who thinks signal whips are no good for cracking, come see me.

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers 5 ft 24 plait Navy Blue and Natural Hybrid Signal Whip DH

5ft 24 plait hybrid signal in alternating chevrons. Lookit how straight that plaiting is! LOOKIT!! lol!

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers 4 ft 16 plait Bruins Hybrid Signal Whip KM

4ft 16 plait hybrid signal whip a la the Boston Bruins!

Mojave Outliers Whipmakers 4ft 16 plait Bruins Hybrid Signal Whip heel detail KM

Detail of the heel knot of the Bruins whip…my client provided me with the pin