tanning chinchilla skins

Submitted by John on 01/02/2004. ( johns_garden@sympatico.ca )

does anyone have any experience tanning chinchilla skins? these would be used for making a hat, mitts, other small clothing items. Fur is left on of course.

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This response submitted by Chinchilla on 01/03/2004. ( )

Lowgrades for nice trim are running 18-25 USD each, how much is your time worth?!

Ah chinchillas, some of my favorite critters.

They are slippy, be prepared for baths full of floating hairs. That's normal. Use drain filters and be gentle!

Pelt in a cold room, do not let them sit for more than half an hour after they are euthanized. When you skin them, be careful, don't pull on the hairs, you're asking for a slip spot if you do.

After pelting make sure you get the skin into a cold room with lots of air circulating to air dry it. You know, get a fan on the skins. No heat! Attach pelt tag at this time.

Then after a week of air drying, rehydrate them in brine and tan them as usual. You can use chrome, EZ-100, utan-F, or whatever else you want.

Make sure to add brighteners and blueing agents unless you want your garments to look seriously off-color.

Do not use alum in your pickle or in your tan, you will make the skins papery and rippy and undesirable. There's a reason the chinchilla industry ditched alum tans and are marketing their syntanned skins as "finest" now!

Hope that helped.


This response submitted by John on 01/09/2004. ( )

thanks for the help. I am a Chinchilla rancher, and pelts just aren't selling. so I thought I'd have a go at using up some of my poor quality pelts, while i wait for the market to improve.
What are these brighteners and blueing agents you mention?

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