The saltless method is good for hides that are being worked on in a humid area. there are tanning solutions like trapper j's that are about 20 dollars a bottle, its usually a mixture of glycerin sugar and alcohol, but you can buy straight 99% glycerin at pharmacy's for much cheaper, either one works. Almost all these had another leather, cloth, or felt base to which I glued and sewed the snake skin. I have “tanned” around twenty snake skins. Let the skin sit undisturbed for 24 hours. Rinse the borax from the skin with water, pat the skin dry with a towel and repeat salting the skin with borax. All these issues everyone is having is due to letting the skins get warm and bacteria starts to work on it. Mmm tasty. Cloud Jaguar. 5 years ago Pressing: In this step, dry the skin by putting in some clothes over the skin. with this method the scales seem to stay intact for a very long time. A friend thought that it was because I didn’t change out the glycerin and alcohol each day, or at least after the second day. Make sure to keep the scales straight, stretch wherever required and put the thumbtacks in a line on the side of the skin. Do you guys have any other crafty ideas? Hang the dead snake on a nail from a tree, so that it is at eye level. A Trophy in the Making. When the skin is dry, brush off the excess salt or any extra pieces of chunk if left. I guess I can get it from Amazon if I can’t find it locally. of skin weight. I was taught this by the village hunters that I was around growing up. I have always had pet snakes and several are entering the last stages of their lives (18+ years). That way your scale side does not get that greasy glycerin soaked in it and it stays natural. I like old barn boards that are easy to work with and put upholstery tacks into when mounting the skin. Overall, I am extremely pleased with my new tanned rattlesnake skin. Did you make this project? An occasional wipe with a slightly oiled cloth, WD40 or Neet’s foot oil, will retain the skins lustre. Tack the skin, scale-side out, to a plywood scrap slightly larger than the snakeskin, using upholstery tacks and a tack hammer. The complete process for tanning a snakeskin involves skinning, fleshing, salting, tanning and stretching. 6 years ago After fleshing, I rinsed the skin off, patted dry, and placed the pieces in a jar full of equal parts alcohol and glycerin. I also chose not to make any unnecessary cuts — my approach is to preserve the original structure of the animal as much as possible until I know what I want to do with the hide. Hey Rhonda, I kept the snake skin in 2 sealed ziplock bags. once i get it on my skins i like to lay a towel in the garage or on a work bench, fold it over so the skin is sandwiched , then lay down a piece of plywood or something stiff and flat large enough to cover the snake, then put on some weights. Be confident enough and increase the pressure whenever needed while giving some downward force to have a clean scrape. From start to finish, a snake skin can be cured and ready for display or use in less than one week. Borax is usually used to “salt” the skins before they are soaked in the tanning solution, the most ancient of which is tannic acid, which gave process its name. It’s rawhide with glycerine added to help make the skin pliable. Tanning Solution: Put a generous amount of tanning solution to the skin. How long did you leave the rattlesnake in the refrigerator to thaw? It’s easy to do and well worth it. You can use a sharp knife in this case instead of going for a blunt blade. In a desert, drying will be completed just in an hour. Can you re-soak a rattlesnake skin? I have read that it’s normal to have shedding of the scales (which I already experience when I handle the hide), so I’ll need to report back on how this plays out over time. This is the method that I learned from Dr. Ron Hood (, This website uses cookies for functionality, analytics and advertising purposes as described in our, http://paleoplanet69529.yuku.com/topic/15843. Remove the flesh as you go. I found this line of flesh in the middle to be particularly resistant to scraping. Pinning your hide is the most important step. I place finished skins in refrigerator for keeping. So using the knife, how to tan a rattlesnake skin? This is what my brother did in his teenage years. I found that water surrounding the skin helped to thaw it very evenly (I actually use this same technique when thawing vacuum-sealed frozen game meat). I let it soak for about a half an hour.then agitate it several times sliding it between my fingers from head to tail kind of squeegee effect. but when dealing with a flexible project like a wallet or hatband its best to not use salt. 3 of 3 Photo by Thomas Tabor Snake Skin ... Rattlesnake Skinning and Dining. Post Apr 17, 2008 #1 2008-04-17T05:38. I squeeze the water out the best I can and pat the hide dry this next step is not required at all but have heard of some that use it . throw some salt on the hide, and let it sit until there is no moisture in it, put extra on the tail the time it takes will depend on ur climate im in the desert and can do this in an hour if i want, but overnight is usually best, you want it dry and crunchy but dont get it so brittle it will fall apart, and don't un-pin your hide, when the hide is dry brush the salt off into the dirt and take any chunks off. I knew then that I wanted to save and preserve the skin, so I was sure to be gentle with it. Rub the inside of the skin with a generous amount of borax powder. The first step in the tanning process is fleshing.

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