Another rather nice-looking new CO2 replica from Umarex. This time, it’s a replica of the Smith and Wesson Model 29 from 1957, made famous by a certain “Dirty” Harry Callahan as “the most powerful handgun in the world.”
This replica is available in three barrel lengths: 83/8”, 6½” and 3”. At least, I think it is: The Umarex USA site claims 83/8”, 5” and 3.” Whatever, this looks rather nice. It appears to be a good visual replica of the Model 29 and it has a fully revolving, swing-out cylinder so functionality looks good too.
This version shoots 4.5mm BBs only, but I would guess that perhaps we’ll see a pellet shooting version soon. Finish look very good indeed on both polished alloy and black, and the black version in particular looks like a convincing representation of blued steel.
These are weighty, all-metal replicas – the longest version weighs a wrist-trembling 2.63lbs (1193g). The only thing I’m not so sure about are those hollow plastic grips. Will these look like wood? Will they make this revolver feel unbalanced? We’ll have to wait to find out.
For a time it seemed that the only new replicas coming out of Umarex were additional Glocks, so it’s great to see some new replicas of historic handguns. I’m certainly looking forward to this one!
I have no information about when this will be available outside the US or what it will cost. Here’s a link to the Model 29 replica on the Umarex.com website
The first batch of Webley revolvers, also known as “Self-Extracting” or “Top-Break” revolvers, arrived in Thailand at the end of last year. Proving to be quite popular, I unfortunately missed out and so had to wait until completion of both the Chinese New Year and Songkran festivities to take possession of my very own Webley MkVI. The wait was definitely worth it!
This is the 6mm smoothbore version is marketed in Asia, under licence, by Gun Heaven of Hong Kong and Taiwan. As far as I am aware, it is identical to the 4.5mm version except for the calibre and the fact that it does not have a safety switch fitted to the right-hand side (I note some models have such a safety fitted just above the trigger; although unobtrusive, I am of the opinion that it is unnecessary: if you are ready to shoot and then change your mind, you simply lower the hammer, remove the “cartridges” and place the pistol safely in a holster or otherwise out of harm’s way).
Real Steel Background
Webley & Son of Great Britain, who would later become known as Webley & Scott following a merger in 1897, started development of their famous “Top-Break” revolvers in the 1870s for both military and civilian markets. All were chambered for the substantial .455 inch calibre cartridge with heavy 265 grain bullets travelling at a little over 600 fps. Black-powder cartridges were used in the MkI which appeared in 1887 and replaced the Enfield revolver as standard issue to the British Army. Black powder continued to be used until the MkV in 1894 when smokeless cordite ammunition was introduced (source: world.guns.ru).
The MkVI was the pinnacle of the Webley Top-Break design featuring a six-inch barrel (previous versions had either four or five inch barrels), squared instead of more rounded “bird’s beak” grips and a removeable front post (although this is cast as part of the barrel on the replica). Whilst the earlier MkIV was known for being used extensively during the Boer War, the MkVI became synonymous with The Great War, entering service with British and Commonwealth troops in 1915. Although production of the MkVI by the Royal Small Arms Factory at Enfield ceased in 1932 (Webley & Scott had stopped production in 1921), this powerful revolver was still to be relied upon by soldiers in World War Two alongside its replacement, the Enfield No.2 MkI (source: Wikipedia).
Gun Heaven Webley MKVI
Packaging and Presentation 4.5 / 5
The gun is held securely in place using bubble-wrap inside an attractive cardboard box. Six “cartridges” are provided along with a detailed user manual that covers operation, field-stripping, a specification comparison between the CO2 replica and the “real steel” … and film and game credits! This last one is a rather novel idea, but hardly surprising seeing as how this pistol has featured in so many films over the years.
Excerpts from the User Manual (2014 – far left) … and Small Arms Training Pamphlet, Vol.I, No.11 (1937)
This movie list is repeated on the back of the box along with a brief history of the original firearm. From “The Lost Patrol” to “A Million Ways to Die in the West” (have not seen that one… yet!) and from “Doctor Who” to “Dad’s Army” (two of my favourite shows as a boy… and ones which I am revisiting in middle age!) the Webley Mk VI Revolver has featured in so many productions (even when it should not have, owing to the fact it did not yet exist!) that it is extremely difficult – nigh impossible! – to know which to illustrate here. However, it would be ridiculous not to give at least a couple of examples; so courtesy of that fountain of knowledge the “IMFDB”…
… and she’s got two! Anna Barnes-Leatherwood (Charlize Theron) in “A Million Ways to Die in the West” (… and who said shooting is just for boys!)
… and finally a shot (excuse the pun!) from a film set in this part of the world — Captain Hornsby (Denholm Elliott) traipsing through the jungle in “Too Late the Hero”
Another excellent idea – and one which I have not seen before – is the inclusion of the facsimile Small Arms Training Pamphlet (Vol. I, No.11) dated 1937, specific to the Webley MkVI. However, the only reason I have not given full marks (and I am being very “fussy” here!) is I would love to see an imitation cartridge box provided with replicas of such historically important guns. Admittedly, I have only ever seen this with the Tokyo Marui 1911A1, but it struck me as being another rather enterprising idea.
Visual Accuracy 8.5 / 10
This replica is, at first glance, identical to the original firearm. My first thoughts were, should you be the curator of a museum wishing to save a little money, then you need look no further than the Webley MkVI replica!
However, there are some very minor differences which I will highlight here. I should like to stress that none of these were at all immediately apparent. The photos with the blue background are part of a larger collection of immaculate British revolvers I found at the “TIR et COLLECTION Armes Règlementaires” forum, a link to which is given at the end of this review.
Photo (top) courtesy of tircollection.com
On the left-hand side everything would appear to be exactly the same, except for the hammer which, when at rest on the replica, sits slightly proud of the firing pin. Mine comes in what is known as a “weathered” finish and, in my opinion, adds significantly to the authenticity of the gun. The original usually featured a selection of proofing marks and stamps – for example, on the cylinder cam as given above – which are not on the replica. Furthermore, the rear sight appears to be slightly higher, but that may well be intentional as it shoots using a perfectly balanced sight picture.
Three well-defined stamps/ engravings may be found on the left-hand side of the frame. Both the “Mark VI” stamped above the cylinder and the “Webley” patent stamp, correctly identified as 1915, below the cylinder are exactly as would be found on the cartridge firing original; having the calibre stamped on the barrel is something I have not seen, at least on the images I have found, but in my opinion does not look at all out of place.
After all, it could be to distinguish it from the MkIV, reintroduced in 1942 in .38 inch calibre and which bears more than a passing resemblance to a scaled-down MkVI — if one of those is in the pipeline, perhaps with an alternative grip style featuring either the “Webley” logo or “bird’s beak” grips — than I for one would certainly like to have the pair.
Photo (top) courtesy of tircollection.com
A few other minor discrepancies are also noticeable on the right-hand side; namely a screw instead of a pin on which the barrel catch pivots and a pin missing to the rear of the cylinder near the top of the grips. The grips on the replica are of black plastic; I assume Bakelite would have been used on the original. Also, as mentioned previously, the front post is cast as part of the barrel whereas it is held in place by a screw on the original.
The serial number is stamped on the frame above and to the rear of the trigger guard. It actually took me some time to find out exactly where they were placed on the original. My search culminated with the Imperial War Museum website and the Webley MkVI used by author J.R.R Tolkien during World War One (a link to the IWM website is given at the end of this review):
N.B.: The screw for the trigger guard is not included on the replica
The shells, whilst marked “Webley .455” are nearly the same size as those of the “.38 inch” WinGun “7-Series” with an outside shell casing diameter of 9.6 +/- 0.05 mm for the Webley as against to 9.4 mm for the WinGun. However, the lead-coloured rubber “bullet” into which the BB is fitted is slightly shorter than that of the 7-Series “.38” (I believe the “7-Series” is what the Dan Wesson replicas are based upon).
Left to right: WinGun .177, WinGun 6mm, Webley 6mm and Nagant M1895 6mm
Please note that some Webley 6mm shells (not shown) have a smaller diameter hole which will reduce muzzle velocity
It certainly looks the part… and performs, too
Operational and Functional Accuracy 15 / 15
Apart from using CO2 as a propellant, operation is exactly the same as that of the original. A CO2 capsule is inserted by removing the right-hand side grip. There is a notch in the base for this purpose. The lanyard swivel, which doubles as a piercing screw, is then gently tightened without piercing the capsule. I then like to replace the grip before tightening the screw further in order to pierce the CO2. Capsules are pierced cleanly and efficiently and it holds its charge well.
BBs are pushed into the front of each “cartridge” and held firmly in place by the rubber “bullet”. Pressing on the barrel catch allows the barrel and cylinder to swivel forward. Cartridges are then loaded – if dropped into place there is a faint metallic “ring” – and the barrel/ cylinder swung back into place with a positive, metallic “click”. You really could be forgiven for forgetting this replica is made of alloy as against steel!
The Webley MkVI, as per the original, may be fired in both single and double action. Once firing has been completed, the cylinder is again swung open and the cartridges raised automatically by the extractor. If the barrel is pushed fully forward, then the extractor will return to its closed position.
A shell being extracted. Although marked “.455” it is in fact more akin to a .38”
Inset: BBs are held firmly in place by the rubber “bullet”
Field-stripping instructions are provided in the user manual. This is much more straightforward than I imagined it would be. With the shells removed, the bottom screw below the cylinder cam assembly is removed and the cam rotated in a clockwise direction. The cylinder then “pops-up” when the barrel is fully opened and can be removed.
Indicating the screw which unlocks the cylinder cam
Shooting 35 / 40
Most of my shooting to date – nearly 600 rounds through six CO2 capsules – has been done in single-action using both a one and two handed grip (the targets shown have all been using two hands). Double-action was a little stiff at first, but is improving with use and practice. The pistol has a real “heft” to it, although with a tendency to fall forward if not held with a firm grip; just like the original, I should imagine. I weighed mine using digital scales and, correcting for spent CO2, this came to 1062 grams (loaded) which equates to 2.34 lbs (an original would be 2.4 lbs, unloaded).
The fixed sights provide a good, clear sight picture; even in low light and without my specs on! As mentioned previously, the rear sight is slightly higher on the replica, but I should imagine this is intentional as it results in a point of aim equaling point of impact.
When target shooting, then the front post should be in focus, not the rear sight.
A clear sight picture with POA (top of post) = POI
I initially shot using .25g (FireFly) BBs. Although obtaining reasonably good results at six yards with a grouping of about 1.5 to 2 inches and mean score of 37 based on sets of five shots at the standard Umarex Boys Club target, which is scaled for use at this distance, I soon discovered that heavier .40g (FireFly) balls resulted in a marked improvement as shown in the following photo:
.40g 6mm BBs at six yards using a two-handed grip.
The grouping on target four is ⅝ inch centre to centre. The inset shows the chrono reading from shot #41
Although muzzle velocity was rather inconsistent for the first few shots, it soon settled to approximately 370 +/- 20 fps using .40g 6mm BBs in a relatively cool (for Thailand!) 27°C. In fact, by about half-way through the capsule of CO2, readings were even more consistent at around 385 +/- 5 fps. At least 90 goods shots may be had from a capsule of CO2. However, it had been a few days prior to this that I first decided to swap to the heavier ammunition… just after I had shot my 10m UBC competition!
All shot at 10m. The targets on the left using .25g, the rest using .40g.
The target in the centre, whilst not being a high score, has groupings of 1 ⅜ inch and ¾ inch (not counting the flier) top and bottom respectively
Whether it is a little less powerful than the 4.5mm version, I am not sure. It is certainly perfectly adequate for my needs, being just right for my “Biscuit Tin” range with shots easily connecting with the single lid which presents an eight inch diameter target at twenty yards. What is also worthy of note is that, thanks to the slightly higher power than is usually associated with 6mm replica guns, on pulling the trigger you immediately hear the impact against the tin lid in the distance, making it much more suitable (and fun!) for plinking in the garden (neighbours permitting).
There is even a puff of “smoke”, noticeable at night, from the rear of the cylinder and barrel. Whether this might indicate an imperfect seal between the CO2 valve and cartridge, I would not like to say as the pistol is remarkably efficient in its consumption of CO2 and the marriage between the two with the cylinder closed appears to be fine; anyway, it looks kind of cool. The pistol is not particularly loud.
Quality and Reliability 14 / 15
It is really too soon to form a proper opinion, but to date the pistol has operated flawlessly. What has to be remembered is that, although no doubt made of a very good quality and durable alloy, it is still made of alloy and not steel. The only thing I could mention is that there is a very slight lateral movement in the barrel where it pivots with the frame, but this is not worsening with use and disappears when the barrel is snapped shut. Furthermore, I would be very surprised if the original did not have some minor movement at this point, too — these guns were built to operate in the worst conditions possible; reliability as opposed to fine tolerance was the order of the day.
The cylinder comes lightly greased and there are no signs of wear to the pawl teeth.
Right – view through the smooth bore barrel
The wide indexing pawl, cylinder stop and valve gasket.
Right – Please note the steel insert in the hammer where it strikes the “firing pin” (this reinforcing pin is to be found on all the WinGun/ Gun Heaven replicas I own)
Overall Impression 15 / 15
I have decided on full marks for this section since, if anything, this pistol has surpassed my expectations — and they were high. Having been so impressed by this smoothbore version of the Webley MkVI, I must admit that I am more than a little keen to see the .177 pellet version one day. Also, as mentioned above, should the manufacturers decide to modify things somewhat to produce a MkIV to accompany the MkVI, then in my opinion they would definitely make a great pair!
Introduced in 1915, this gun was issued to men who were expected to endure the unimaginable horrors of World War One. Most of these men were not professional soldiers, but ordinary people from all walks of life who when called upon, did their duty, many of them never to return home. Terrible sacrifices were made on both sides; not only must this never be forgotten, we must ensure that it never happens again.
On a less serious note, I feel immense credit is due to Gun Heaven/ Toubo/ WinGun and Webley for deciding to work together in order to revisit the original design and thence develop what can only be described as a thoroughly authentic, fully functioning replica of the Webley MkVI Service Revolver; one which should appeal not only to shooters and collectors of replica firearms like myself, but also to those who may otherwise not be particularly interested in replica pistols such as full-bore and other shooting enthusiasts, military historians, readers of classic late 19th and early 20th Century fiction and, last but not least, avid television and movie fans!
It has been a long wait for a replica of the iconic Colt Single Action Army revolver which not only looks right but is also a capable shooter. No surprise then that when Umarex launched a replica of the Colt SAA in 2015 there was a great deal of interest from both replica collectors and shooters. Was it worth the wait? Pistol Place contributor Adrian gives us the lowdown…
Real Steel Background
A detailed description of the history and development of the Colt Single Action Army revolver has been written by Steve and may be found in the Classic Guns section (a link to which is provided at the end of this review).
Arguably one of the most famous pistols of all time, the Colt Single Action Army — also known as the “Peacemaker” or simply “Colt .45” — was first adopted by the United States Army in 1873. Along with the Smith & Wesson Model 3 “Schofield” it was to replace another pistol made by Samuel Colt, the Model 1860 percussion revolver.
Various models were produced in what would become known as the “First Generation” of these pistols (1873 – 1941) including the “Cavalry” model with a 7 ½ inch barrel, the “Bisley” with a 5 ½ inch barrel and the “Civilian” or “Gunfighter” with a 4 ½ inch barrel. The CO2 replica presented here is the 1873 “Artillery” model, also with a 5 ½ inch barrel, but distinguished from the Bisley in that the latter featured a wider trigger and hammer spur and different shape grips.
The Umarex Artillery Model
An interesting point is that whilst all true “Single Action Army” or “SAA” revolvers were chambered for the .45 Colt cartridge, a “Colt Frontier” model was also produced chambered in .44-40 Winchester making it compatible with another famous gun introduced in 1873, the Winchester lever-action rifle (source: Wikipedia and World Guns).
Packaging and Presentation 3.5/5
The pistol is presented in a sturdy and rather attractive cardboard box, printed to look like wood, along with the Colt logo, a picture of the gun and basic technical information. On the underside of the box are more detailed specifications given in a tabular format.
The gun is prevented from moving inside the box by a sheet of bubble wrap, comes with six “cartridges” and a detailed manual in English, French, Italian, Polish, German, Spanish, Russian and Turkish. The manual covers safe usage, technical data, operation and basic maintenance. Instructions on how to disassemble the pistol and an exploded diagram are not given.
I opted for the “blued” version and the finish is superb. Both “Nickel” and “Antique” versions are also available, each with different colour grips.
Nickel and Blued — a pair of exceptionally fine pistols! Photo courtesy of John Beattie
Visual Accuracy 9/10
Visual accuracy is excellent, the only real differences being the hammer sits slightly proud when in the rest position, the front post is slightly less prominent and there is a smaller head on the screw below the hammer.
Image above courtesy of Colt.com
The Umarex replica, CO2
Image courtesy of icollector.com – please note the lack of a screw to the rear of the base pin on this model and the metallic brown of case-hardened steel
There are also an additional pair of small screws diagonally opposite each other either side of the cylinder and a couple of extra pins, one of which is to hold the dummy firing pin in place. This last item is in fact the same as on the original except that the pin or rivet would not be visible.
Detailed, accurately placed markings are included, although these appear in a more prominent white than would usually be found
The only other real difference on the right-hand side is there is only one pin instead of two between the cylinder and the trigger. A Colt logo, as this is a licensed version, has been included. The calibre is noted along with a pentagon “F” (for the German market) followed by the serial number. This would normally have been located on the underside, just forward of the trigger guard, often with two identical numbers being stamped: one for the grip frame and one for the cylinder frame.
Image courtesy of icollector.com
Whilst having done my best to do justice to the beautiful finish, you really have to see the pistol for yourself in order to appreciate the various shades of blues, purples and browns which the gun exhibits in the correct light
Similarly, the backstrap exhibits a soft metallic brown colour. The grips, although plastic, have a lacquered walnut appearance and in my opinion look very good indeed
Basking in evening sunshine! Neither the safety switch nor the piercing screw are at all obtrusive; the text on the butt reads “Licensed Trademark of Colt’s Manufacturing Company LLC”
Operational and Functional Accuracy 14.5/15
The weight and feel of the gun complement its visual appearance perfectly. With the shells removed there are no extraneous rattles nor movement from any loose parts; it feels solid and realistic in the hand. This is what is known as a “solid-frame” revolver (source: World Guns), as against to the “top-break” mechanism of, for example, the Webleys and “hinged-frame” of Smith & Wesson.
CO2 is loaded by gently easing-off the left-hand side plastic grip panel. The grip is held in place by a metal clip and a small plastic tab, molded as part of the grip at the top, which fits into the frame. At first I thought Umarex had been a bit mean by not including an Allen (Hex) key in order to tighten the CO2, but then noticed the tool for the job very cleverly hidden inside the grip panel. An excellent idea! This key is not only convenient, it is easy to use and you are less likely to overtighten the CO2 capsule which on insertion seals perfectly.
No Allen keys required! The CO2 capsule seats and seals perfectly; the tightening screw is recessed within the grip and not visible when shooting
The technique for loading a “cartridge” is one I have not seen before in that each is loaded by pressing a 4.5mm BB into the base as against to the front of the shell. The shells are made of metal which may well be brass; they certainly look the part!
Identical to the original, the hammer is then moved to half-cock, the loading gate opened and each shell dropped into the cylinder. As with the Nagant M1895 and Webley Service revolvers, the cylinder rotates in a clockwise direction as viewed by the shooter. I usually like to shoot five shells at a time and the proper way to do this is to skip loading the second shell which results in the hammer resting on an empty chamber when it is again lowered after inserting the fifth shell. This was how they were originally advised to be carried as there was no drop-safety fitted in the late nineteenth century.
Photo left – the gate open and the hammer at its first-cock position allowing a cartridge to be inserted; right – full-cock with the locking lug again engaged with the cylinder
In his article “Classic Handguns – The Colt Single Action Army Revolver” Steve notes four “clicks” when operating the hammer. With this replica there are three distinct stages; the first where the indexing lug drops into the frame allowing shells to be inserted, the second where the lug reappears but does not yet quite engage the cylinder and the third where the revolver is now at full-cock with the cylinder having completed its movement and the indexing lug again fully engaged. All in all very realistic indeed!
As mentioned above, the hammer at rest stands slightly proud when compared to the original, and although it is fitted with a “firing pin”, this is in fact purely for show as CO2 is released by the base of the hammer striking a valve which is hidden from view inside the frame. A working ejector rod is provided in the tube running along the right-hand side of the barrel, although this is not actually required on the replica.
Photo left – the ejector rod is fully functioning; right – there is a safety switch fitted to the underside of the frame
My gun has a muzzle energy reduced to below 2 joules for markets within South East Asia including Hong Kong, Taiwan and Thailand, whereas others (e.g. for Europe and the United States) have up to 3 joules as specified on the box. Whilst mine shoots at a reasonably consistent 325 +/- 5 fps, this is not representative of the muzzle velocity as designed and so I asked Marc, a fellow member of the Umarex Boys Club (UBC), if he would be so kind as to share his observations shot using both Nickel and “Antique” revolvers purchased in the UK and a selection of appropriate 4.5mm BBs.
Barrel length is 5 ½ inches on the Artillery Model, although you could argue that the “effective” barrel length here is in fact 7 inches as the BBs are loaded into the base of the shell.
It was then time for Marc to shoot a few targets, each with the gun semi-rested on a sandbag. Six targets of six shots each were fired from both guns using Umarex Steel and H&N Copper Coated Lead BBs; he chose to discontinue using the Gamo Lead Balls as, although grouping reasonably well, they proved to be the least accurate, shot low and tended to make the barrel dirty. The targets presented below are the best of those shot.
Marc’s Nickel revolver
Then the “Antique”
Marc reports that fliers were evident from the Antique version, but not the Nickel; until he swapped the shells and they disappeared altogether!
I have also shot a few targets, this time off-hand, obtaining results similar to those of Marc including the occasional flier. Although I feel Marc’s are more representative of what a good shot should be able to achieve with the full-powered version, I have still included a couple of mine as illustrated below; with one very lucky one indeed, even more so as I did not check to see where the shots were falling – just had to show it!
The “Man in a Fedora” was shot one-handed: five red (most out of character!) followed by the blue (more like it for me, although still very pleased)
My latest to date – a slightly wider spread, shot off-hand using a two-handed stance and Daisy BBs; targets were shot left to right, red then blue, top then bottom with an overall mean of 35/50 for five shots
In the preceding photo, the cartridge which appeared to give the odd flier was put aside after sequence #4 and then used, loading individually each time, for the lowest target (sequences #7 and #8 scoring 41 and 36 respectively). A couple of days previously I had shot a total of six UBC six-yard competition targets each with five shots one-handed and five two-handed, obtaining a mean score of 65/100. POI is about one and half inches above POA.
Based on all these results, I think it is fair to say that one to one and a half inch grouping can be expected — but perhaps not every time — at a range of six yards (5.5m), admittedly with the occasional flier which both Marc and I agree may well be down to the experience of the shooter, not the gun!
Similarly, Marc has reported that more practice has resulted in similar groups to those he shot before, from both guns, but with fewer fliers. He also notes that the sights take a while to get used to, especially the ones on the “antique” version which can be a little more difficult to see in low lighting. He has had up to 90 good shots per capsule of CO2; I have experienced slightly less at around 75 to 80. The pistol is relatively quiet; more so, for example, than my Webley Service Revolver, 6mm CO2.
Marc’s “Antique” Colt .45
I should just like to add that this is an extremely comfortable pistol when shot using one hand as the wide heel of the grip tends to pivot itself into the palm of your hand. Certainly, what cannot be stressed enough is the realism (and fun!) of listening to those three clicks as you draw back on the hammer.
Nickel version fitted snugly within a “Johnny Ringo” holster made by John Beattie; a link to John’s exceptional work is given at the end
Quality and Reliability 14 / 15
First impressions are extremely good and I have every reason to believe this pistol will prove to be durable and reliable, hopefully on a par with my Umarex S&W 586 in the UK which is now over ten years old. The quality and overall finish is remarkable, even though some sort of high quality alloy will have been used instead of the steel of the original. Some wear is noticeable, particularly where the pistol interfaces with the holster, but this only tends to give the gun an even more authentic appearance.
Neither an exploded diagram nor field-stripping instructions are provided, but based on its smooth operation and reassuring heft I think it is fair to say this is a very well made pistol indeed.
Time for a hand of cards… PIPAS perhaps? Information as to PIPAS and other various unique and exciting UBC competitions may be found by following the UBC link below
Overall Impression 15 / 15
As a show piece alone it is quite beautiful, but together with the realistic operation and accuracy it is without doubt a worthy addition to any gun collection. Umarex have certainly done justice to the original in the form of this exceptionally fine replica of a quintessentially American revolver… the legendary “Peacemaker” or “Colt .45”.
Total 90 / 100
At home in its holster, this one made by “The Horse Shoe” leather shop in Northern Thailand