Playing with the pelts

Help Support RabbitTalk:

KelleyBee

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2021
Messages
308
Reaction score
231
Location
Southwestern Pennsylvania
So, I have air dried 11 pelts. No, these are not quality pelts, except one from a 9 month rabbit I recently culled (her pelt is not pictured). Has anyone air dried and proceeded with tanning from here? I've read conflicting info, which is why I'm asking. Some say air dry then tanning is preferred, others say air drying is not preferred. What I like about the air drying is the flexibility of keeping it as rawhide or proceeding to tanning if it is a good pelt. I look forward to hearing from the experienced!

20220418_100807.jpg
 

Preitler

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 15, 2014
Messages
1,042
Reaction score
228
Location
Austria
Well, I never dried pelts, they go straight into the pickle after a quick wash, get fleshed in the next 2 or 3 days, then into the tanning bucket.

I wouldn't know how to store them really dry enough here, and, well, if I don't do the work right away I'll end up with piles of pelts that could be tanned at some undetermined point in the future...., I once made the mistake of freezing fresh pelts, ended up throwing all away a year later. So I either discard them, or tan a few nice ones.
I have now a pile of tanned pelts, waiting to be used for something at some undetermined point in the future.....
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2022
Messages
10
Reaction score
6
I know that generally salting hides to dry them out and simply rehydrating them before a pickle or other true tanning method is acceptable, and I dont see why air drying them and rehydrating them would be any different, but i have no experience air drying pelts myself.
 

KelleyBee

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2021
Messages
308
Reaction score
231
Location
Southwestern Pennsylvania
Well, I never dried pelts, they go straight into the pickle after a quick wash, get fleshed in the next 2 or 3 days, then into the tanning bucket.

I wouldn't know how to store them really dry enough here, and, well, if I don't do the work right away I'll end up with piles of pelts that could be tanned at some undetermined point in the future...., I once made the mistake of freezing fresh pelts, ended up throwing all away a year later. So I either discard them, or tan a few nice ones.
I have now a pile of tanned pelts, waiting to be used for something at some undetermined point in the future.....
I have some in the freezer and I have worried about that method of temporary storage. Why, what happened that caused you to decide to trash the frozen pelts? Online, lots of people are freezing them to hold before tanning. I decided to dry them because I prefer not to use the freezer space for them any longer.
 

KelleyBee

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2021
Messages
308
Reaction score
231
Location
Southwestern Pennsylvania
I know that generally salting hides to dry them out and simply rehydrating them before a pickle or other true tanning method is acceptable, and I dont see why air drying them and rehydrating them would be any different, but i have no experience air drying pelts myself.
Is pickles no and tanning the same thing?
 

Bunnies4me

Member
Joined
Apr 21, 2022
Messages
5
Reaction score
1
I'm halfway through this process. I have dried with salt in the past and I have one dried with borax, but I havent got to next stage of setting them back to rawhide to tan, so I don't know how they'll turn out. I made contact with a professional tanner and asked her how the best way was to store them, she told me they get freezer burn and go 'old' in the freezer after about 3-6 months, which meant they weren't always as premium as they initially would have been. She hasn't tanned my borax dried skin, but I will ask her to when I am ready to have a few samples to compare. I tried to tan a few with an old fashioned method of using egg yolk, washing them with shampoo was part of the process, that was successful, but I don't know how long they will last or how hardy they will be.
 

KelleyBee

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 29, 2021
Messages
308
Reaction score
231
Location
Southwestern Pennsylvania
I'm halfway through this process. I have dried with salt in the past and I have one dried with borax, but I havent got to next stage of setting them back to rawhide to tan, so I don't know how they'll turn out. I made contact with a professional tanner and asked her how the best way was to store them, she told me they get freezer burn and go 'old' in the freezer after about 3-6 months, which meant they weren't always as premium as they initially would have been. She hasn't tanned my borax dried skin, but I will ask her to when I am ready to have a few samples to compare. I tried to tan a few with an old fashioned method of using egg yolk, washing them with shampoo was part of the process, that was successful, but I don't know how long they will last or how hardy they will be.
Thank you for your story. I sho probably get the ones I have out of the freezer, thaw and onto the drying stretchers. It sounds like this is a better way for storage before processing them further.
 

Shea

Well-known member
Joined
Jul 10, 2017
Messages
201
Reaction score
3
Location
Upstate NY
Thank you for your story. I sho probably get the ones I have out of the freezer, thaw and onto the drying stretchers. It sounds like this is a better way for storage before processing them further.
If stored vaccum sealed in the freezer they will last a while. But you can run into the priblem of the fur insulating skin so bits of flesh don't freeze fast enough and can rot. I have air dried a few, but my critters kept getting into them. Switched to salting and havent had a chance to go further then that yet.
Tan and pickle or used interchangebly these days, but are 2 very different methods.
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2022
Messages
10
Reaction score
6
Is pickles no and tanning the same thing?
Pickling is a part of the tanning process. I pickle in a regular salt bath for a while even though I do brain/egg/smoke tanning because it helps sort of fluff the skins fibers and makes detail fleshing easier. Some people pickle in an alum salt bath which is part of a different tanning process that i have no experience with.
 

Latest posts

Top