Obenauf’s Leather Oil

Aerostich Combat Lite Touring boots, after treating with Obenauf's Leather Oil

Aerostich Combat Lite Touring boots, after treating with Obenauf’s Leather Oil

My Aerostich Combat Lite Touring boots are about ten years old now.  I reckon I’ve worn them for something in the order of 150,000 kilometres, and they’re still going strong.

I meticulously treat the leather.  For many years, the only leather treatment I’ve used on the boots is the British leather product Ko-Cho-Line leather dressing.  It’s a red grease with the consistency of petroleum jelly, and had been highly recommended by a friend who said it was popular in the equestrian community for treating leather tack.

The Combat Lite Touring boots are made by Italian footwear company Sidi, and they are NOT advertised as being ‘waterproof.’  With all the Ko-Cho-Line dressing I’ve applied, the boots have always stayed dry, except for one occasion when I rode 4 days straight in heavy rain.  The toes let some moisture in.

Earlier this year, I switched to Obenauf’s Leather Oil, a product made in Idaho.  It is available at Cabela’s.  What I like about Obenauf’s compared to Ko-Cho-Line is that Obenauf’s is an oil, which I think penetrates the leather much faster and easier than the greasy Ko-Cho-Line.  This is important to me because even after almost 10 years of wear, the Combat Touring Lite boots are still VERY stiff.  When new, they were painfully stiff.

I have been looking for a leather treatment that would soften the leather to make it more pliable.  The first time I used Obenauf’s on the boots earlier this year, I noticed the boots were definitely more flexible after the leather oil treatment.

Aerostich Combat Lite Touring boots c;leaned with Fuller's aerosol product then an application of Obenauf's Leather Oil. Excess oil still has to be wiped off these boots

Aerostich Combat Lite Touring boots c;leaned with Fuller’s Shoe Clean aerosol product then an application of Obenauf’s Leather Oil. Final step is to buff off

One word of caution.  Somewhere (I can’t find it right now) Aerostich’s boot care directions warn owners NOT to over oil the boot because it causes the leather to soften and therefore provide less protection than a stiff leather boot.


  1. Dave Graham says:

    Good article. I don’t wear my Aerostich Combat (full size) boots much because they are still as plywood and not waterproof.


    • ty says:

      Dave, you need to bite the bullet and trust Aerostich’s recommendation (which I never did, and regret not having done so) for breaking in the boots. They recommend a technique requiring you to soak the boots in water to wet the leather, then to put the boots on before they have dried and walk in them until they ARE dry.

      There are many other boot manufacturers that specifically say do not use this technique, but I think it’s the only real way to break in these VERY stiff leather boots.


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