TIME FOR SURGERY
Re-lacing a baseball glove could be right up there with trying to perform open heart surgery. In a way it is surgery. Glove surgery. No matter how minor or major of a repair it is, re-lacing a glove is a difficult task. If you’re brave enough, here are some tricks of the trade.
TOOLS OF THE TRADE
Prior to starting this seemingly impossible task, you will need some very important tools:
- Rawhide Lacing: Make sure that you have enough lacing to complete the job. There is nothing worse then getting close to finishing a section and run out of leather. Choosing the right color of lacing is a personal preference.
- Ice Pick or Leather Tool: Either one of these tools are vital to complete this process. Without these, trying to re-lace a glove is almost impossible. These two tools help guide the lacing through the small holes in the glove.
- Needle-nosed Pliers: Once the lacing has been guided through the holes by the above mentioned tools, the needle nose pliers are able to reach in and grab the lacing to pull it through.
- Knife or Scissors: Either one is needed to cut out the old lacing so it can be removed.
First thing that you want to do is to either take a picture of your glove or try and sketch out the pattern of the lacing. Trying to remember the lacing pattern is very difficult, if it has not been documented prior to starting. This is the most complicated part of re-lacing. DO NOT take out the old lacing without knowing how the new lacing should go in! (I have done this and it’s not pretty).
If you are going to try and re-lace the whole glove, you should start at the bottom and work your way up towards the fingers. The palm and the bottom of the glove are probably the easiest to do. When feeding the new lacing through the glove, make sure that you have tied a knot at the end of the lacing so you don’t accidentally pull it all the way through. (Been there, done that!)
Trying to re-lace the fingers is very difficult because of the criss-cross pattern that is involved. This is where making sure how it looks prior to starting is very important. Also, the lacing that holds the fingers together is the same lacing that is attached to the webbing. Making sure that you have enough lacing to complete both sections.
Trying to re-lace the webbing is also very difficult especially if you are trying to re-lace an “H” web or a “trap-eze” web. Both of these webs involve intricate lacing.
As you are pulling the lacing through the glove, make sure that you pull the lacing tight prior to putting it through the next hole. Trying to go back and get some more “slack” is a pain and not always possible.
Once your re-lacing job is complete, make sure that you oil the new lacing to prevent it from drying out.
Good Luck and Be Patient!
About The Author:
A former professional baseball player, Rob Murray operates The Hit Barn, a 4-season baseball training facility in the Greater Boston area where he works individually as a pitching and hitting coach with players of different ages ranging from 11-16 years old. Visit The Hit Barn Blog under DirtDog Sports Links or here at http://hitbarn.wordpress.com
A 3-time Dual County League High School All-Star, Rob played for Ithaca College in the 1993 and 1994 NCAA Division III World Series. After college Rob played professionally for the Richmond Roosters (Frontier League) and the Bangor Blue Ox (Northeast League). Rob continues to actively play baseball in an Over-30 Baseball League in Lowell.