Submitted by sandman on 3/17/00. ( )

I was talking to a gentalmen last night who has been in the taxidermy business a long time and is very good at it. I asked him what were the reasons for sending his items out to be tanned vs doing it himself. The answer confused me a little. He said the main reason he sends it out is because he doesn't have the time. I understood that, but the other reason was when he gets the stuff back from the tanner he can just hang it up and rehydrate it when he was ready to use it. If he tanned them himself he would have to put them in the freezer until ready to mount. Why would you have to do that? If I pickled,shaved,pickled,tanned and oiled couldn't I hang it up just like the items that came back from a tannery? Maybe I miss understood his answer but I don't think so.

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This response submitted by Frank on 3/17/00. ( )

Home tanning is great. I love doing all my deer hides and smaller. Anything larger I send out. Yes it does save time sending out. You have no pickle, shaving, tanning hours put in. It can used to better your time else where. But after you tan a hide at home, depending on what you use, yes you can hang them up to dry out. The reason for freezing them is two fold: one by freezing, it takes the water out and lets the tanning agents in better. This is what I heard about freezing a hide. Second, and this is true, after you freeze the hide, it's quicker to unthaw one that is frozen compared to one that needs to be rehydrated.
I hope this answers your question.

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