|This article is a personal guide. Information expressed in this guide is one player's opinion and may be more opinion than fact. Strategies and information contained herein may not work for everyone.
No non-minor changes should be made without consulting the author. Changes or questions should be discussed on the talk page.
Leathercrafting Guide 1.0
by Ctownwoody of Asura
Sons of Valkrum Linkshell
Disclaimer: This worked for me and is based on my research and efforts on Asura. Prices are subject to some radical changes, but I still suggest going to ffxiah.com to research your particular server. Disclaimer #2: Notice that I haven't taken this (or any other guide) beyond 100 yet (aside from synths that would get you to 100 but are now used to get beyond 100). That is on purpose as demand for ingredients is so much higher than demand for the products that almost nothing beyond 100 is either profitable or cheap enough to do for skill. Disclaimer #3: I'm also researching taking the guide to 100. No plans to make a Leathercraft mule, like ever. But the idea of continuing to expand my guides is attractive. Feedback, like always, is appreciated.
1. The guildshop in Sandy is rarely camped; you can get better prices at the AH. Sheep, Rams, Dhalmels, and Tigers are reasonably nearby, easily farmed, and have drop-rates ranging from great to okay. That being said, supply-issues can be overcome at the guild for a slight premium on AH prices.
2. Skins and Bones are great joint farming. My guides are built to avoid farming for synth materials, since the idea is to add value to the ingredients using your skill, rather than trade time for gil. However, Leathercraft and Bonecraft, especially in the under-70 range, share a lot of the same mobs for drops, and the mobs in question have generous drop-rates. If you do go farming, be sure to bring the materials to synth in the field as needed because skins usually don't stack, but the leathers that they make do stack. Rams, Dhalmels, Tigers, and Sheep are the most commonly-farmed mobs, in order of popularity (and value of their Bonecraft drops).
3. Leather-making uses either Windurstian Tea Leaves or Willow Logs. Tea leaves are better because they are cheaper and stack, but sometimes you can get one extra level of Skill out of Willow Logs, which makes the logs worth buying (at either Leather or Woodworking guilds in Sandy).
4. Leathercrafting is used to make various pieces of armor, either as the principle or a sub-craft, in at least a majority of armor sets in the game. While not a lot of these armor sets are very profitable or sell particularly well, there are a lot of these armor sets and you may want to make some of these sets yourself for the outside shot at skill or HQs.
5. Leather-making skins are not stackable (but non-Leather-making Skins are)**. Inventory space is therefore a concern, even if you never plan to leave San d'Oria. Getting the Gobbiebag expansions, therefore, is likely to pay off in the long run. Additionally, Dark Clusters, Distilled Water or Water Tank, and Windurstian Tea Leaves should be brought on field-trips when farming while minimizing their other gear you bring. **Most skins are now stackable to 12.
6. Leather-crafting is a subcraft in important Smithing, Goldsmithing, Clothcraft, and Bonecraft recepies. Skill-ups come more slowly as a sub-craft, but the lack of good recepies in some stretches can be overcome in this fashion.
7. Barring some 100+ synths that were recently-added, the only GP item worth getting, the +Skill items aside, is Leather Ensorcellment for Powder Boots (Flee enchantment). Tanning wasn't that great and got nerfed by recent changes that let you synth without delay between attempts, and Grounds of Valor removed the market for High Breath Mantles. So you should have a relatively straightforward path on GPs.
The Guide Itself
- Sheep Leather (2)-Dark Crystal, Distilled Water, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Sheepskin--Make these to cap and either sell them or save them for later. These sell quickly, profitably and are a good source for profit whenever you get some skins or get bored.
- Sheep Wool (4)-Wind Crystal, Sheepskin x2--These recently are no longer worth the effort because prices have tanked for Wool Thread and Wool Cloth. You can make these if you want (if you are going slowly or trying to use random drops), but it might just save time and gil to skip ahead.
- Rabbit Mantle (7)-Earth Crystal, Grass Thread, Rabbit Hide x5--Make to cap, NPC them in batches. Lather, rinse, repeat. If you get lucky and make an HQ, sell it AH for a tidy profit. Save one as a TEST ITEM.
- Solea (11)-Wind Crystal, Sheep Leather x2--You can try desynthing these to get the leather back or you can NPC them. Your choice, but make them to cap. Nothing good (stackables, sells quickly and/or profitably) or cheap between 7 and 21.
- Karakul Leather (12)-Dark Crystal, Karakul Skin, Imperial Tea Leaves, Distilled Water--I added this as a possibility because it is pretty profitable, but Wild Karakuls aren't the most camped mob in Caedarva Mire, for good reason. The skins aren't the most plentiful but the real concern is Imperial Tea Leaves, which are pricey as all heck. This is still a profitable bridge, so use your own judgement about risk vs. reward.
- Wolf Fur (19)-Wind Crystal, Wolf Hide x3--These used to stink but demand for them is decent now that Wolf Felt, a Clothcraft 75 synth that requires 3 of these, is used for more items. Hides are 483 at the Guild, which will most-likely be your source as the AHs typically have too few of them. Either sell to a Clothcraft friend, or put up on Jeuno AH. You want to get to around 15+ at least to be able to do Dhalmel Leather.
- Dhalmel Leather (21)-Dark Crystal, Distilled Water, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Dhalmel Hide--Another bread-and-butter leather. This one is for Gobbiebag I, so they sell well in stacks or singly in Jeuno. Make to cap and make for profit.
- Bugard Leather (24)-Dark Crystal, Distilled Water, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Bugard Skin--Leather Purification aside, this is only used for Gobbiebag V quest, so they only sell singly in Jeuno. But try to cap on this if possible as it is a profitable synth. See Update below and factor it into your calculations.
- Update From Lethaniol: this is also used for Bugard Strap +1 so it sells in stacks too now, but watch out for competition.
- Warrior's Belt (25)-Wind Crystal, Iron Chain, Dhalmel Leather--These sell okay, but the HQ version is much better, but a stack or two might do well as a bridge.
- Dhalmel Mantle (27)-Ice Crystal, Dhalmel Hide, Wool Thread--These do okay, as well, but don't count on doing much better than breaking-even. Again, another bridge worth looking into.
- Parchment (31)-Dark Crystal, Sheep Leather, Rolanberry--Get the berries from Jeuno NPCs. As an item used in the Bard Flag Quest and for other items, they sell better singly.
- Vellum (31)-Dark Crystal, Sheep Leather, Rolanberry, Gold Dust--Get the berries from Jeuno NPCs. These are used in the Scholar Flag Quest and a SCH AF Quest. Either with this or Parchment, your task is to get your Leather to at least 29.
- Ram Leather (35/36)-Dark Crystal, Distilled Water, Ram Skin, Windurstian Tea Leaves/Willow Log--This is a great item to make, especially if you can farm the skins yourself (Rams are my biggest exception to my "no farming for craft items" rule). Either way, make money on this puppy and cap out at 36. That last level takes using Willow Logs. Sell a bunch for profit but lay in a supply as well; you'll need them.
- Wolf Gorget (39)-Earth Crystal, Wolf Hide, Cotton Thread--Decent bridge, if you can get the thread for cheap in Selbina. Your goal here is to get your skill to the point where you can make Waistbelts (43).
- Waistbelt (43)-Wind Crystal, Ram Leather x2, Grass Thread--If you farm at least half the Ram Skins yourself, this is the most profitable/break-even bridge between Ram and Tiger leathers, so cap on these. NPC these in batches and go back to farming to let the price go back up at the guildshop.
- Buffalo Leather (49)-Dark Crystal, Buffalo Hide, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Distilled Water--I debated back and forth on these, but they are profitable enough to include, especially in an area dominated by bridge synths. The market for these is not strong, but you can make these for a profit. As a side note, Laminated Buffalo Leather (Water Crystal + Animal Glue + Distilled Water + Buffalo Leather) is a level 53 item that sells slowly and is used for certain AF+1 upgrades.
- Ram Mantle (49)-Ice Crystal, Wool Thread, Ram Skin--
Ram Skins don't stack, so farming will be tricky.They do now. This kinda sucks, but again, it gets you closer to Tiger Leather. Synth and de-synth if you prefer or NPC to the Guild for most of the cost of the Wool Thread...
- Raptor Mantle (53)-Earth Crystal, Raptor Skin x2, Grass Thread--These are for Mog House Quest III, so they sell decently, better on weekends, and at an almost break-even price. Use this as a bridge to start Tiger Leather.
- Laminated Buffalo Leather (53)-Earth Crystal, Buffalo Leather, Animal Glue, Distilled Water--Used in AFs, sells decently, if not as well as normal Buffalo Leather, but it can add a bit of profit to Buffalo Leather.
- Catoblepas Leather (58)-Dark Crystal, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Distilled Water, Catoblepas Hide--As one commenter put it quite correctly, these suck. However, they are a relatively cheap bridge. Hides should go for 1k on the AH and the leather sells for around 800. Be a man and suck it up, or find another way to get your skill to 50-52.
- Moccasins (59)-Earth Crystal, Dhalmel Leather, Linen Cloth, Raptor Skin--Profitable, if not fast selling, but you can probably unload a stack or two as a bridge to Tiger Leather.
- Tiger Leather (61)-Dark Crystal, Distilled Water, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Tiger Hide--They are used in Gobbiebag III, so they sell like mad in Jeuno, they should cost less than 1k per hide at AHs, and you can mass-produce them easily. Have fun making your gil back!
- Hard Leather Ring (62)-Wind Crystal, Tiger Leather--Cap on these for the extra level above Tiger Leather. These NPC for around 600, so it is a loss, but you'll be making a ton and a half of the Leather, which will let you get a net profit for the 50's, if not the entire 0-70 run.
- White Mouton (67)-Dark Crystal, Shell Powder x2, Ram Skin, Distilled Water, Windurstian Tea Leaves--Make to NPC, as they are only for AF+1 upgrades, but Ram farming is something that yields good results if no competition. Take the materials out to the zone and go nuts. I only made these because I have a 100+5 Bonecrafter who can HQ the Shell Powder easily.
- Behemoth Leather/Behemoth Mantle (70)-Behemoth Hide + either standard Leather-making stuff or Mantle-making stuff. Both are capping type synths, the hides are pretty cheap, but the mantle will lose you gil and market for leather is profitable but sales are soft.
- Coeurl Leather (71)-Dark Crystal, Windurstian Tea Leaves, Distilled Water, Coeurl Hide--Hides aren't easy to get but this leather is more widely-used than the Behemoth variety.