had a fairly large whitetail to do this summer. it was an iffy cape to start with but it did not slip through the initial fleshing. i did not salt down due to i had to hurry because the cape was questionable. when i put in saftee acid pickle for the required time frame, i pulled it out and the hair was slipping bad. the hair ends also looked as if they were eaten off or burned. is it possible the solution was to strong ? i checked the pickle several times and the litmus paper showed 1 to 2 ph. i also used dawn prior to putting in the pickle to wash hair. could it be that i did not rinse hair off enough. i looked in archives and could not find the answer. thanks
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Always, always, always salt the cape or hide.Salting will set the hair as well as remove the excess fluids out of the skin. Its a step you cant afford to skip, questionable skin or prime.
If you think about it, the skin is just like a sponge. Dump water on the floor and take a wet sponge ond try to wipe it up. It wont soak it up because its already reached it full holding copasity. Now, take a dry sponge and put it into the water and what happens? It soaks the water up. This is because the sponge is, lets say, THIRSTY!
The same thing can be said about you cape. It was already full with fluids when you put it into the pickle and was unable to obsorb the acid and salt.The pickle was unable to do the job it needed to.
As for washing the skins, this is the last thing I do before I start the tanning process. Soaps have a very high PH content and I dont take the chance with it.If extremely bloodied,I will give them a quick wash in very cold water and a bactericide to get the majority of it out before I put it into my pickle.Otherwise, I dont worry about it till I go to tan out.I have also used Bruce Rittel's "Blood Eater" with EXCELENT results!
I hope that this has been of some help to you.
Have a good day,
Follow Daves advice, but many time that will happen or they even have curley patches of hair.
Kind of like an auto painter spraying without priming...
You just dont have the option not to salt!