Customer wants elk hide tanned hair-on for coat and other clothing. Does anyone have advice on how well it would "wear"? I am experiencing slight hair slippage with elk. I find much controversial info on tanning techniques. I've been salting(fine non-iodized) and drying completely, using Kemal 4 and basacryl rinse, pickling(1 1/2 lbs salt plus 2oz PreTan 110 per gal). Info says to leave heavy hides such as elk in pickle for up to 24 hrs, shave and pickle again up to 24 hrs, maybe a third time. I've only been pickling them twice, since the hair seems to slip more the longer they're left in the pickle. Am I pickling too long? Help! I have many elk hides to do and need to get this right! Thank you all.
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Beth I've never tanned an elk hide but I would change your pickle to formic acid or Safe-tee acid to a ph of 1.5 to 2.They should not be slipping in the pickle and can be safely left for several weeks.I've left deer capes in for a week or more and never had any problems as long as the ph stays consistent.I think the pickle may be your problem if you are salt drying you hides hard to set the hair.
I do believe I'll try the acid pickle. I've received much of the same advice. Thanks for the advice!