Tock Salt & Battery Acid?

Submitted by first timer on 11/20/05 at 10:07 PM. ( )

I have a tanning receipe that calls for 2 lbs of rock salt and 8oz of battery acid in 2 gal of water as a tanning solution for fresh or frozen hides. Any one have any experience with this that they might wish to share? I am wanting to tan goat hides with the fur on, nothing to serious if it doesn't work, just experimenting. This recipe is noted as less work then the more conventional methods.

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I have some prime swamp land for sale too.

This response submitted by George on 11/20/05 at 10:22 PM. ( )

Toss that piece of crap recipe and buy a tanning kit from someone like Bruce Rittel. Rock salt doesn't dissolve well under any circumstances and sulfuric (battery)acid is a very harsh acid that causes all kinds of problems down the road. This is the recipe for the OLD "pickle tan" which was never a tan to begin with.

come-on george

This response submitted by ej on 11/21/05 at 12:27 AM. ( )

you know better, i've heard from an upstanding source on here that bruces safty acid IS derived from sulphuric acid.
you may be right about the rock salt. i don't know. i say use a good salt like morton water softener salt. i respectfully disagree with the position you always take on here about sulphuric acid. but to each their own i guess


This response submitted by George on 11/21/05 at 8:28 AM. ( )

That's fine that you disagree. But what part of "dirivative" don't you understand. Pure battery acid smells a LOT like Krotann, but pouring it into water is always a delicate chore. You can never pour water into it without endangering yourself. And rock salt by any other name just doesn't work well. Rock salt, water softener salt, snow salt, ice cream salt, whatever you call it has too big a crystal to dissolve in cold or room temperature water. It just WON'T. I can fill my water softener with it and it still take 3 months with 3 tiems weekly backflushing to dissolve it. And again, you didn't address the TAN part of the thread. This is just a crude, rude pickle at it's best. My advice will stand up anyplace to anyone who knows anything about tanning. Check out the name of the poster in this thread and see how important it would be for him (or her) to start out on a solid foundation.

Sulphuric acid works fine , ROCK SALT DOES NOT !

This response submitted by Matthew on 11/21/05 at 2:48 PM. ( )

George in my opion sulphuric acid works fine I have used both this and saftee acid in my pickles. However,I have to admit that it is hard to handle sulphuric or battery acid and I always wear gloves googles and saftey gear for that reason George.Only differnce is sulpuric acid although from what heard is harder to strtech after hides are tanned. I would have to say to this beginner that I agree with the George on the conditon that rock salt is : NOT AT ALL RECOMMENDED SORRY FRIEND, BUT THAT IS THE WRONG KIND OF SALT . Reason is rock salt is hard to dissolve, as george said , while with non idodized table salt dissolves faster and is therefore the best kind of salt to use.

this will not work for tanning .

This response submitted by Matthew on 11/21/05 at 2:56 PM. ( )

I agree George that this will not work for tanning. Because the job of the acid is to remove the proteins out of the skin and there place is only in the pickle. Second acids are NEVER USED IN ANY TAN UNDER ANY CIRCUMSTANCES. If they are then your asking for trouble with acid rot and acid swell down the road. Which is where the acid eats the skin up and when you wash or rehydrate the skin it falls apart like wet paper. This is why all skins that leave the pickle prior to tanning must be neutralized.

The reason Rock Salt ...............!

This response submitted by Bruce Rittel on 11/22/05 at 1:21 AM. ( )

The reason Rock Salt is not recommended is because it contains a lot of minerals. These minerals interfere with the chemicals used to pickle and tan the skins or capes. DO NOT USE IT!

scuse me?

This response submitted by jrosbor on 11/23/05 at 3:05 PM. ( )

Say what? What is the pH of a tanning solution? Any tanning solution, you pick it! ALL TANNING SOLUTIONS ARE ACIDIC! Most run a pH about 3.5-4.5 Thats an acid as far as I can tell. And MOST recipes tell you to adjust the pH with acid or bicarb as needed to keep the pH around 4.

C'mon now! ONE of the big reasons we pickle a cape is to "draw" the tanning chemical into the center of the skin. Otherwise you end up with a "surface" tan. This now brings up over and under neutralizing after the pickle. Most tans "like" a lower pH. This is why we only neutralize for 20-30min.


you need chemistry

This response submitted by Brandon Mayfield on 11/26/05 at 1:49 PM. ( )

I may not know alot about tanning hides but I do know alot about chemicals and their effects. In many cases battery acid is used as a burning chemical and salt is used to absorb any access particles that may exist. This first timer is wanting to keep the hair on his cape and so in his case the battery acid would not work b/c there would be a chemical reaction mixing battery acid and salt of any kind together. No they will not explode or make a mess but they will ruin any kind of cloth or leather. Brandon

You need Biology.

This response submitted by jrosbor on 11/26/05 at 6:08 PM. ( )

What do you think makes "Battery acid" battery acid? Just to be a smart ass here. Battery acid is made up of sulfuric acid, water, and salt. "Battery acid" is AKA automotive grade sulfuric acid. But not the same grade as one would use to solder a radiator. Now that that is over with.

Way back when I was a strapin young buck, LOL! There was something called a "acid paste tan" It was the most simple thing to do. On a raw hide, You made a paste of automotive grade sulfuric acid and table salt. Rub this on the hide and cover with a trash bag over night. The next day you would repeat. In two days you had a hide that could then be neutralized and oiled. This was it!

Yes there are acids that will "burn" the hair off of a hide. Sulfuric acid is not one of them. The acid actualy causes the cells in the skin to "burst" and the salt slows this down to prevent "acid swell". Yes this does happen to some extent in the epidermal layer but not to the extent that will cause hair loss.

Yes, Sulfuric acid is some nasty crap! There are cheaper and safer alts to this.


Battery acid is a poor choice

This response submitted by Steve on 11/28/05 at 12:24 PM. ( )

I tanned some beaver skins with battery acid several years ago. Had trouble with them falling apart later. It's hard to neutralize and most modern tanners don't use it.....

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