I'm ready to attempt my first Elk mount and was wondering if I can pickle and shave n tan with liqua-tan in -house? I've never used a commercial tannery before and have heard horror stories about them.
If it can be done,
I'm sure it is a lot of work but I feel that my quality can be controled better if I do it but on the other hand I'm not sure how much work I'm lookin at? Please give me some advice on what I might be getting into so I can prepare myself !
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on what tools you have on hand. If you have a fleshing machine and know how to use it, it will not be any harder than a WT. The skin of a good bull elk can be half an inch or more thick in places. This makes good, even, thinning of the hide important. This can be tough to do with a knife, or mini-flesher. Otherwise they are actually, quite easy to mount. The only other area of concern is the long antler pedestal. Make sure and use a good epoxy on those. Another thing that helps is to nail the hide around the base of the anlers until it is dry. Just to be clear, you don't have to drive the nails clear in! LOL! Just enough to hold the hide up until it dries.
If You feel you might want to use a tannery I can recomend Arlington Cape here in OH, or Golden State tannery in CA. Both do great work. Get that elk wet tanned by either and you MAY never touch liqua-tan agin. Keith Daniels the owner of Arl Cape is a regular poster in the tanning section especially. You can get his e-mail there or in the archives. Good Luck!