Fur Handling Forum


No Profanity *** No Flaming *** No Advertising *** No Anti Trappers *** No Politics
No Non-Target Catches *** No Links to Anti-trapping Sites *** No Avoiding Profanity Filter


Home~Trap Talk~ADC Forum~Trap Shed~Wilderness Trapping~International Trappers~Fur Handling

Auction Forum~Trapper Tips~Links~Gallery~Basic Sets~Convention Calendar~Chat~ Trap Collecting Forum

Trapper's Humor~Strictly Trapping~Fur Buyers Directory~Mugshots~Fur Sale Directory~Wildcrafting

Trapper's Tales~Words From The Past~Legends~Archives~Kids Forum~Lure Formulators Forum


~Dobbins' Catalog~

>
pcsoutdoors
(Please support PCS Outdoors, our sponsor for the Fur Handling Forum Page)


Print Thread
Hop To
Page 1 of 2 1 2
Home tanning beaver #6463877
02/16/19 11:19 PM
02/16/19 11:19 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
A
AJE Offline OP
trapper
AJE  Offline OP
trapper
A

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
I've talked to 2 people that have used the orange bottle to tan a beaver. Both struggled. They couldn't get the pelt to soften. Is home beaver tanning tough, does the orange bottle not work well for beaver, or might they be doing something wrong? 1 of the guys was discussing it with me tonight. I couldn't think of a good remedy.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6463907
02/16/19 11:54 PM
02/16/19 11:54 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
Beaver leather is uneven in thickness over the pelt.The flanks are thin enough but the cheeks and shoulders need to be thinned down to have a useable pelt.
Beaver leather is also dense in the fibres,and more difficult to get the tan and oils to strike thru the leather than other skins.
It is best to start off with a thinner skinned beaver pelt which would be a medium or LM,early spring or late winter pelt.


Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6463969
02/17/19 01:05 AM
02/17/19 01:05 AM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Wanbli Offline
trapper
Wanbli  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Boco, as usual, is absolutely right. If you're going to attempt a beaver hide expect to spend extra time thinning the tougher areas. If your fleshing knife has a good edge you can skive it thin with that. This takes a lot of time and one must be very careful. I, as others here have mentioned, have sanded the thick sections after letting the pelt dry. I believe Boco is the one who freeze-scrapes his hides and that's another great way to thin the thick areas. I use an elk antler scraper to shave the frozen hide thin before pickling. If you thin and pickle well the stuff in the orange bottle is fine but I would recommend you also use a quality leather oil as the leather is drying and keep working the hide as it dries in order to get it supple.

Good luck.


"There is value in any experience that reminds us of our dependency on the soil-plant-animal-man food chain" Aldo Leopold
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6464009
02/17/19 02:11 AM
02/17/19 02:11 AM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
True,frost scraping is a great way to thin leather for tanning.I have also dry scraped stretched and salt dried beaver to thin the leather somewhat in prep for tanning.Until you get a bit of experience with this method it is hard to guage how thin the leather is getting until you pop a hole in it..You can further shave the thicker parts during the pickle stage of preparing the pelt for tanning.I occasionally use a spokeshave on pickled skins to thin thicker parts of a hide,Tanneries shave the leather with a circular flesher at this stage of processing.And like was said,you can also use coarse sandpaper on thicker parts of tanned skins before oiling the leather.


Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6464867
02/17/19 08:12 PM
02/17/19 08:12 PM
Joined: May 2016
Posts: 1,306
Maine
J
Jonnytrapper Offline
trapper
Jonnytrapper  Offline
trapper
J

Joined: May 2016
Posts: 1,306
Maine
I use orange bottle for beaver. These guys know what they are talking about. If it's not thinned way down the oil won't penetrate. First one I ever tried cracked on the fur side. If you took a cross section you would have been able to see the flesh side was tanned and the fur side was raw hide. I kept trying to soften it until it cracked. Also beaver really need to be degreased well.

Guys that have a lot of experience have crafty ways to thin them down but I just use a right angle die grinder with 60 grit disks.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6464883
02/17/19 08:21 PM
02/17/19 08:21 PM
Joined: May 2016
Posts: 1,306
Maine
J
Jonnytrapper Offline
trapper
Jonnytrapper  Offline
trapper
J

Joined: May 2016
Posts: 1,306
Maine
Cruddy picture but here's a couple I finished a few days ago and are ready for smoking. They are both small pelts but the large ones can be done just more work. I scrunched them up so you can see they are soft as sweat cloth.
[Linked Image]

Last edited by Jonnytrapper; 02/17/19 08:25 PM.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467214
02/19/19 11:11 PM
02/19/19 11:11 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 182
North Jersey
T
TrapprChris Offline
trapper
TrapprChris  Offline
trapper
T

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 182
North Jersey
following

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467221
02/19/19 11:22 PM
02/19/19 11:22 PM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Wanbli Offline
trapper
Wanbli  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
One can wash hides with Dawn dish soap to degrease. There are other things you can buy from taxidermy supply for degreasing. I do a good wash with Dawn and rinse thoroughly then I wring it out and put it in the pickling solution.


"There is value in any experience that reminds us of our dependency on the soil-plant-animal-man food chain" Aldo Leopold
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467272
02/20/19 12:19 AM
02/20/19 12:19 AM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Wanbli Offline
trapper
Wanbli  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
No, the orange bottle doesn't discuss a pickling solution. One can tan a hide without it but it's better to pickle a hide. A pickling solution is a salt-acid bath with a pH of 2. One can pickle hides with vinegar but the pH doesn't get very low. Use non-iodized salt. I buy a bag from the local feed store for about $5/50# bag. I prefer to use McKenzie Safety Acid to get the pH down to a 2.
FWIW, I have tanned hides pickling with salt and vinegar. The pickling solution draws moisture out of the hide and helps to chemically break down some structure of the hide to allow the tanning agents work into the fibers. For a thick hide like beaver I pickle for a couple days, pull the hide out and work on thinning the hide then place it back in the pickle for another couple days. Stir the hide and check the pH a couple times a day.
Following the pickle, be sure to neutralize the hide with fresh water and baking soda. After the hide is well neutralized I wring it out and roll it up in an old towel to dry. While the hide is still damp I rub on the tanning oils that are warmed. Fold the hide leather side in and roll it back in the damp towel overnight.

I hope this helps some. Keep in mind these are very basic instructions and I find that every hide is a little different in what it needs in the softening process. Generally, the more you work a hide while it's drying the softer it will be.


"There is value in any experience that reminds us of our dependency on the soil-plant-animal-man food chain" Aldo Leopold
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467493
02/20/19 10:13 AM
02/20/19 10:13 AM
Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 2,237
SW WI
trapper20 Offline
trapper
trapper20  Offline
trapper

Joined: Dec 2014
Posts: 2,237
SW WI
i home brain tanned a beaver to make a hat for my nephew. it turned out ok. a little stiff and a pain in the butt to work with. now I only tan them to hoop them, so I don't need them too soft.

I did brain tan 2 for a friend for throws. they turned out fairly soft but I had a lot of work in them!

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467788
02/20/19 03:04 PM
02/20/19 03:04 PM
Joined: May 2016
Posts: 1,306
Maine
J
Jonnytrapper Offline
trapper
Jonnytrapper  Offline
trapper
J

Joined: May 2016
Posts: 1,306
Maine
I do like Wanbli and use dawn to degrease but be warned some people seem to have problems with it. I used vinegar to pickle and citric acid powder to get the PH down. I'm new to pickling but it was an easy thing really. Also, take the hide out after 24 hours and reflesh. All the membrane you missed will turn yellow. Then throw it back into the pickle for at least 2 more days.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467872
02/20/19 04:52 PM
02/20/19 04:52 PM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Wanbli Offline
trapper
Wanbli  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Yes, that's the stock salt to use on hides. No iodine in that stuff.


"There is value in any experience that reminds us of our dependency on the soil-plant-animal-man food chain" Aldo Leopold
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6467953
02/20/19 07:04 PM
02/20/19 07:04 PM
Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
Wanbli Offline
trapper
Wanbli  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2019
Posts: 82
Buffalo, SD
VanDyke's Taxidermy which is now owned by McKenzie Taxidermy supply. They sell a whole line of stuff for home tanning. They also have the pH strips to check the strength of the pickle bath.


"There is value in any experience that reminds us of our dependency on the soil-plant-animal-man food chain" Aldo Leopold
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6850901
04/21/20 11:19 PM
04/21/20 11:19 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
A
AJE Offline OP
trapper
AJE  Offline OP
trapper
A

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
Glad to see this thread resurrected.

I didn't get around to tanning any beaver this year, but I'm hoping to next year. I bought the EZ-100, and plan to practice on some mink, muskrat, a squirrel, & a beaver tail that I have in the freezer.

Last edited by AJE; 04/21/20 11:24 PM.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: ] #6851038
04/22/20 08:17 AM
04/22/20 08:17 AM
Joined: Jan 2020
Posts: 4,309
Aliceville, Kansas 43
Yukon John Offline
trapper
Yukon John  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2020
Posts: 4,309
Aliceville, Kansas 43
Did it turn out soft and supple? A guy told me the orange bottle makes them as stiff as, well...anyway, I just assume he didn't break it good enough.


Act like a blank, get treated like a blank. Insert your own blank!
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: ] #6851583
04/22/20 04:43 PM
04/22/20 04:43 PM
Joined: Jan 2020
Posts: 4,309
Aliceville, Kansas 43
Yukon John Offline
trapper
Yukon John  Offline
trapper

Joined: Jan 2020
Posts: 4,309
Aliceville, Kansas 43
We didn't get into specifics. He just said it was stiff as a board.


Act like a blank, get treated like a blank. Insert your own blank!
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: Yukon John] #6851957
04/22/20 11:55 PM
04/22/20 11:55 PM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
A
AJE Offline OP
trapper
AJE  Offline OP
trapper
A

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
Originally Posted by Yukon John
We didn't get into specifics. He just said it was stiff as a board.

That's similar to the experience my uncle had tanning a beaver with the orange bottle.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6890463
06/04/20 10:45 PM
06/04/20 10:45 PM
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,329
Frazee, MN
B
backroadsarcher Offline
trapper
backroadsarcher  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,329
Frazee, MN
I did a badger a couple of years ago with the orange bottle. That hide is a tuff one also. I used a wire wheel on a drill and thinned it out a bit in areas. That seemed to help a little.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #6898192
06/13/20 01:10 AM
06/13/20 01:10 AM
Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
A
AJE Offline OP
trapper
AJE  Offline OP
trapper
A

Joined: Jan 2016
Posts: 9,740
WI - Wisconsin
I wonder how a dremmel tool would work for thinning.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7791885
02/05/23 06:33 PM
02/05/23 06:33 PM
Joined: Jan 2023
Posts: 10
Indiana
L
Lontra Offline
trapper
Lontra  Offline
trapper
L

Joined: Jan 2023
Posts: 10
Indiana
Does the hide need a salt cure to do the initial drying or is a trapper dry with no salt ok? Want to try some tanning, just donít know if I need to salt or not. I think most kits assume your starting with a salted hide?

Last edited by Lontra; 02/06/23 03:24 PM.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7795195
02/10/23 12:41 PM
02/10/23 12:41 PM
Joined: Sep 2020
Posts: 1,485
Pennsylvania
P
patrapperbuster Offline
trapper
patrapperbuster  Offline
trapper
P

Joined: Sep 2020
Posts: 1,485
Pennsylvania
When i tan furs with orange bottle you have to break them WHILE they are drying. Most tanned beaver i DONT try to soften. Most people that get them just display on a wall or lay on a table to display there collectables, etc. All other furs i soften.

If you dont pickle a hide first you must dry salt it for a couple days, then put in a liquid salt solution for a few hours. Those that use the orange bottle directions know what i mean.

For salting you always want to use non-iodized salt.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: patrapperbuster] #7796021
02/11/23 12:05 PM
02/11/23 12:05 PM
Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 16,660
Rodney,Ohio
SNIPERBBB Offline
trapper
SNIPERBBB  Offline
trapper

Joined: Dec 2006
Posts: 16,660
Rodney,Ohio
Originally Posted by patrapperbuster
.

For salting you always want to use non-iodized salt.

Iodized/noniodized is irrelevant. Use whatever you have unless its cattle salt with minerals mixed in. Iodine doesn't effect anything.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7806430
02/24/23 06:34 PM
02/24/23 06:34 PM
Joined: Feb 2023
Posts: 2
Ontario
F
Farside Offline
trapper
Farside  Offline
trapper
F

Joined: Feb 2023
Posts: 2
Ontario
Hi folks, I would like to share my experience with egg tanning beaver. I'm from New Zealand, where beaver are extremely rare, and so moving to Canada was a great opportunity to learn about traditional fur tanning.

I started egg tanning domestic meat rabbits and got pretty good at it. Then I was given a coyote hide and that also went well. So when I was offered 2 beaver hides I took them, and they have been kicking my (This word is unacceptable on Trapperman) for a year.

I figured they would be the same as the rabbits and the coyote, but as soon as I started fleshing I realized this wasn't the case. Layers of fat, muscle, and membrane... So much grease...

I didn't have a fleshing tool, so I used a spoon and knife. Followed the usual process and began breaking the hides on the 4X4 that supports the deck. 3 days later the hides were dry and kind of pliable. They almost killed me. days and days of working those 2 hides. I was too exhausted to smoke them so I put them in the basement.

Fast forward 6 months and I pull them out. They are stiff as a board and not likely suitable for mitts. I took them over to a friend's house to compare them with a commercially tanned pelt they had, and my ones were a disaster. I either made amour out of my pelts or I had to do something.

After a bit of reading, I realized that I did a few things wrong. I didn't properly flesh the hides and I didn't thin them either. So how to remedy this situation?

Luckily for me, egg / brain tanning isn't fixed until smoking is complete, and I hadn't yet smoked them. I read that an electric drill with a wire wheel attached is effective at fleshing and thinning hides so I started with one of them. It was slow going but effective. There were some spots that were so hard that the wire wheel made no progress, and so I moistened the skin with water and it made a big difference.

I did make quite a few holes in that hide - thinning too much, after I moistened the whole area with water.

The second hide I completely hydrated before I began thinning and it made the process much faster and easier. I also made a lot less holes.

Once they were done, I re-applied a thin yolk/water mix as I figured I likely just ground away all the previous treatment. I applied it 3 or 4 times once per day as I wanted a really deep penetration of those oils, and I also put the hides through 3 cycles of freeze / thaw.

A final rinse to remove the excess egg yolk and the hide is transformed. Easy to break in and much faster too. Not as soft as the professionally tanned comparison, but certainly good enough to make mitts from.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7806602
02/24/23 10:26 PM
02/24/23 10:26 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
Good save.


Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: backroadsarcher] #7807227
02/25/23 06:29 PM
02/25/23 06:29 PM
Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,329
Frazee, MN
B
backroadsarcher Offline
trapper
backroadsarcher  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Nov 2012
Posts: 4,329
Frazee, MN
Originally Posted by backroadsarcher
I did a badger a couple of years ago with the orange bottle. That hide is a tuff one also. I used a wire wheel on a drill and thinned it out a bit in areas. That seemed to help a little.

How else can a person thin out a hide if it has been through the tanning process. Or is it better to do it before tanning?

Last edited by backroadsarcher; 02/25/23 06:33 PM.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7807232
02/25/23 06:39 PM
02/25/23 06:39 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
You can thin it out after tanning with a spokeshave on a beam.


Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7807397
02/25/23 09:54 PM
02/25/23 09:54 PM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
I took two dried skins out this morning,they are re hydrated,degreased, and in the pickle right now.
I dont like to do too many at a time.
I find that the quality control suffers if you try to do too many at once when hand tanning.

Last edited by Boco; 02/25/23 09:56 PM.

Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7814718
03/07/23 02:41 AM
03/07/23 02:41 AM
Joined: Jan 2023
Posts: 10
Indiana
L
Lontra Offline
trapper
Lontra  Offline
trapper
L

Joined: Jan 2023
Posts: 10
Indiana
Well I salted for a few days. It drained quite a bit the first night. Shook it off and re-salted. Let it sit for several days while I figured what/how to do next. Re-hydrated. Degreased. Rinsed. Drained. Then put in a Safety Acid pickle for 36 hours. Shaved as best I could on beam with two handed flesher. Not sure I took enough off but I put maybe two hours of careful shaving into it. Degreased then back in the pickle. Tanned with EZ-100. Pulled it out, drained, oiled and folded. Unfolded after 6-8 hrs and hung to dry for several nights. It was about 3/4 dry. Realized I should have rinsed before oiling. So I rinsed and rehung to dry for a few more nights. Started breaking it today. Its coming along. Possibly mistake to rinse and not oil again, but I think I could wet and then oil again if I cant break it well enough.

Last edited by Lontra; 03/07/23 02:42 AM.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7814918
03/07/23 11:29 AM
03/07/23 11:29 AM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
.

Last edited by Boco; 03/07/23 11:32 AM.

Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7814919
03/07/23 11:30 AM
03/07/23 11:30 AM
Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
B
Boco Offline
trapper
Boco  Offline
trapper
B

Joined: Aug 2011
Posts: 42,836
james bay frontierOnt.
If it is drying a bit stiff in places,mix up some tanning oil thinned 1/2 and 1/2 with warmwater and apply it to the stiff/thicker parts of the skin.Fold it up and roll it up for a few hours and then unroll,and work it a bit.repeat if necessary as the skin drys.


Forget that fear of gravity-get a little savagery in your life.
Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7814923
03/07/23 11:41 AM
03/07/23 11:41 AM
Joined: Feb 2023
Posts: 27
NW Wisconsin
W
WIKA Offline
trapper
WIKA  Offline
trapper
W

Joined: Feb 2023
Posts: 27
NW Wisconsin
I use the orange bottle tanning solution for hooped beaver. Just nail them back on the board after degreasing, salting, rinsing, then use the orange bottle while its nailed. No need to break for hoops. I hooped some tanned beaver from Moyles and had a hard time getting the beaver to lay nice and flat against the wall because they are so flimsy and no matter how tight the leather stiches got I had a crease somewhere in the beaver.

Re: Home tanning beaver [Re: AJE] #7815033
03/07/23 03:00 PM
03/07/23 03:00 PM
Joined: Jan 2023
Posts: 10
Indiana
L
Lontra Offline
trapper
Lontra  Offline
trapper
L

Joined: Jan 2023
Posts: 10
Indiana
Thanks for oiling tip Boco.

Page 1 of 2 1 2
Previous Thread
Index
Next Thread

Powered by UBB.threads™ PHP Forum Software 7.7.1