It is great to find this forum and will look often. I have skinned countless snakes and an old mountain man told me when I was a kid to skin the snake and put the skin in antifreeze for 24 hours. Take it out and it fleshes much easier and the scales come off leaving full coloration. I then dry and apply neatsfoot oil to make pliable. This has been very sucessful, but I recently (4-19-04) skinned two cottonmouths and performed the procedure. When I took the skins out yesterday and removed the scales, they were very light colored (much more yellow, losing more of the dark green/brown). I have many skins including cottonmouths that came out darker. Since it is the spring, do snakes have different coloration through there process of shedding throughout the year? Could it be the time of year or am I just messing up somehow that I can't figure out?
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Only a mountain man would have come up with that procedure! It is a terrible procedure at best. It may have worked before cause antifreeze in the old days contained alcohol, which is what was FIXING, the skin. Most antifreeze does not contain that much anymore making the process useless! Buy Some Rittels snake tan, and follow the instructions. You will retain all color and have a nice flexible leather that will last a lifetime!