how to tan a snake skin without buying a tanning kit

Submitted by Andrew on 05/02/2003. ( )

i want to know how to tan a snake skin to make a belt. moccasins regularly visit my front yard and i am forced to kill them before they kill me. i wanted to do something useful with the skin instead of throwing the whole snake in the bushes. thank-you

Return to Reptile Taxidermy Category Menu

snake skins

This response submitted by wetnwild on 05/02/2003. ( )

You could easily remove them with a stick rather than kill them, but if you must kill them, after you skin and flesh them, you can tack them down to a board and paint on a mixture of 50% methanol, and 50% glycerin to the meat side about once a day for four days, and they will be cured to do with what you want. Hoever, this is not tanning, and will be no good for making things with except a wall hanger. For the cost of the glycerin and methanol, you could easily buy the Rittel Snake tan kit, and do it right1


This response submitted by Andrew on 05/03/2003. ( )

thanks for the help, I will look into the tanning kits

Where do we get a tanning kit in the Dallas, Sherman TX area

This response submitted by Margyk on 07/08/2003. ( )

We killed a 28" copperhead next to our garage Sunday. It was hiding under our riding lawnmower, I think waiting for one of the 6 week old kittens to get close. My husband skinned it and laid the hide out on a board-meat side out. He wanted to know what to put on it so he could make a hat band. Are we too late to do anything with it? If not, where in the North Dallas area can I purchase a kit? I work in Carrollton TX and we live 5 miles south of the Oklahoma boarder.

Snake Skin Tanning

This response submitted by Kevin Elliott on 09/30/2003. ( )

I may be to late to save this skin, but for future Snake/Deer skins you can get do-it-your self tanning kits. There are suppliers in Texas and Oklahoma. Go to and click on the link for thier distributors, search through the list until you find one close to you.

Hope this helps

Freezing snakeskin?

This response submitted by Kaleb on 10/13/2003. ( )

I read somewhere you are not supposed to freeze reptile skin. Is this true and why?
I got a diamondback to skin from my in-laws that was in the freezer for about 2 weeks. Can I still do anything with it?

Brittle skin

This response submitted by Bill on 10/19/2003. ( )

I have a already treated snake skin that got soaked in water. It is now dry and brittle. What to do?


This response submitted by traveldog1 on 12/03/2003. ( )

I recently hit a snake with my car. Long story short, I skinned it, tacked it to a board, salted it, and have now put Borax on it. What do I do now to finish the tanning process, and to make it safe to give to my kid?


This response submitted by Jacob Burnett on 12/09/2003. ( )

A method I have used and had some success with, is first fleshing as much as possible. Fleshing is taking meat off of the under side of the skin. Then I soaked the skin in 75% denatured alchohol for a couple of days. Then brought out to dry and streatched repeadidly during the drying process. Clean it off andw your done.
Hope this helps some of you.

Return to Reptile Taxidermy Category Menu