Salt or No Salt

Submitted by Len Fabich on 11/8/99. ( )

My question is : What will salt do to help me in the tanning process.
Currently I tan raw beaver and otter hides mostly. I don't have trouble with hides slipping so setting the fur is not what I am interested in when answering this question. I know it is important for this reason on some animals.
I am concerned with my beaver hides not getting as soft as I would like sometimes and bruce has helped me in this area.
But!!! what would I gain by salt drying and rehydrating before tanning. Anything?
Would it help tan better in anyway or is is just for setting the fur/hair and short time preservation.
I am very interested in answers to this question.
Also I am very interested in anyone who I could correspond with on tanning beaver using Van Dykes tannium or Rittels EZ 100 please Please email me as i would love to discuss this issue with you

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Salting and Degreasing

This response submitted by Mark Daniels on 11/9/99. ( )

The reason why you want to dry salt is to set the hair but you
also need to add the salt to the pickle and tan for 2 reasons
first is to help set hair but second to keep the acid swell
down in the skins. If you do not place this in the bath the
skin will swell up and seem like a piece of rubber. If your
skins are not as soft as you like them you may need to find a
better degreaser, we offer Kemal 4 or Super solv. This can
be part of the reason that its not as soft as you like. As for
the tan you can use the ones your using now or use Liqua Tan.
You can use Tanning Oil #1 after you tan the skin, this will
also help soften. Mark Daniels

Question for Mark on salt

This response submitted by Len on 11/11/99. ( )

My question really was aimed at salting the hide befor pickling, as I understand
the importance of it during pickling. What % of salt do you reccomend
on a salinometer. I have used mostly between 25% and 30% but Bruce recently
pointed out that this could cause acid damage to my skins. I guess I was
trying to compensate to swell the hide in hopes to get a more plum leather.
But I did notice some weakening of the leather. What is the lowest a person
can use and get away with.Seems like 40% is what I hear mostly.

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