About Tanning a Coyote the most simple way?

Submitted by Nathan Cowlishaw on 6/9/02. ( visitornate@yahoo.com )


I killed a big Coyote here in Southern Utah. It was the largest one I had ever seen. Now I have had it frozen for some time. I am afraid that if I try to tan it myself, I might screw up? Anyways I want to give it a try. When I say this is a big coyote I mean it.


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One hour tan

This response submitted by superpig on 6/9/02. ( )

by Authentic Supply. I use it on all my small mammals up to the size of a coyote. I works great, the hides do not loose their epidermis and retain the colors in nosepads, eyelids and even inside of ear. It is very simple too. All you do is flesh you hide soroughly, then wash it in dawn liquid to get rid of the blood and dirt. After rinsing soak in Bacteriacide for at least 10 minutes. Rinse under cool water and soak in premixed tanning solution for one hour. After that you rinse it again under clean water and either mount it right then or put in the freezer for later mounting. Now if you want to tan that coyote for a flat wall hanging rather than a lifesize for mounting,I would suggest that you send it off to a tannery.

rug or mount?

This response submitted by cur on 6/9/02. ( wildart@prodigy.net )

Easiest way with local store bought materials is with salt and alum. Bring one gallon of water to a boil and dissolve 1/2 pound of alum into the hot water. Add one gallon hot tap water after alum is dissolved and add at least a pound of salt- more if it all dissolves...you cannot add too much salt! Pour mixture into a large plastic or ceramic container (five gallon plastic bucket is fine).....

Thaw the hide and scrape all of the flesh and connective tissue from the skin. Split the lips and remove all cartilage from inside the nose pad. Split the eyelids and turn the ears to remove the cartilage. A dulled flat bladed screw driver will help with the ear reversal. Spread the hide on a slanted board, fur side down, and spread stock salt or kosher salt or other medium coarse salt over the skin to pull moisture from the tissues. Repeat salting to pull additional moisture from the pelt. When the pelt is nearly dry, wash off the salt in a solution of 1/2 cup borax, 1/4 cup dawn and two gallons of cool water. Rinse thoroughly and completely in clean water and when sure the soap is gone from the hide, place it into the alum salt pickle you prepared by following the above steps.

Move the hide around once a day in the pickle and make sure that it is completely immersed. A brick may be placed on top to insure it remains soaking, if desired. Leave in the solution for about two weeks, making sure you agitate and turn it daily. You can check the edges for a complete tan by making a small cut with a sharp knife. When the hide is tanned, it will be white through and through.

When the skin is completely white, remove from the pickle, rinse well in warm water and then soak in a bath of warm water with 1/2 cup of borax and one tablespoon of Dawn added for each gallon of water added. The hide will be stiff when it is first removed from the alum pickle. Soaking for a time in the borax water will soften it.

You will need to break the hide if you intend it to be soft and flexible. This is done by rubbing Protal or Neat's foot oil into the hide and by breaking it over a rounded dull edge. If you have no breaking edge available, a dull axe head can be clamped in a vise and used for the purpose. After the initial breaking, the hide should be tacked fur side down on a plywood sheet, stretching, but not too much, as you tack around the edges. Be careful of the hair arrangement as you tack so that it isn't reversed or bent in the process. Tacks or nails should be about two inches apart and just hold the skin taught, but not tight. A couple of layers of cardboard laid between the hide and the board will help the drying process.

When the hide is nearly dry, remove from the tack board and reapply oil and break until it is the softness you desire.

The alum process is as old as they come, and it is time consuming if you desire a soft pelt for hanging or rugging. The reason I outlined it is that it is effective, and can be done with locally purchased materials.

My specific advice is to contact a competent tannery to get the job done right and practice on a more routine trophy. Tanning kits are also available from WASCO and will produce good results with less breaking required.

cur,you forgot one important thing

This response submitted by CHUCK on 6/9/02. ( cnctaxi@prodigy.net )

Let the water cool before imersing the hide into the salt/alum solution.You'll cook the hide into coyote soup otherwise.A slight oversight on your part there,Bill.

1/4 cup of Dawn??

This response submitted by Mr. Bubbles on 6/9/02. ( )

I'd cut back on that 1/4 cup of Dawn! Gheeeeeeeeezzz! That amount of dawn in 2 gallons of water, you would never get all the dang soap rinsed out! At least not in the same day! Ha! A little dawn goes a loooong way! Hmm, I once knew a girl named Dawn that was just like that also!

Good luck on your tanning!

what about liqua tan

This response submitted by TravisChilson on 6/11/02. ( Idlewild@minot.com )

i dont know anything about taxidermy im just begining but i heard you could use liqua tan with safetee acid and it works great and is easy just rub it on look on Van Dykes web i may be wrong check it out first if you find out any info email me im gonna do a coyote to
just wanna make shore this works before i do it

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