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thawing deer, elk capes

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by Basin Taxidermy, Dec 9, 2009.

  1. Basin Taxidermy


    Is soaking these frozen capes in water an okay way of thawing . or is it best to leave them and room temps until ready to work ???
  2. deerhunt1985

    deerhunt1985 Only dead fish go with the flow

    NO on the water, hang by the horns and let thaw...water is NOOOO good

  3. MattHCT

    MattHCT New Member

  4. Sarge

    Sarge A little too much Lord *hic*

    Raw or tanned?
  5. Basin Taxidermy


    well shoot i guess Im a little late in finding this out!!!! so now what would you say are my chances at this point? I have sent out a few capes to the tannery that were thawed this way, are they now most likely to slip? or is it a crap shoot? some will some wont? is it possible that i will Luck out... anybody?
  6. Basin Taxidermy


  7. Sarge

    Sarge A little too much Lord *hic*

    If they thawed and you salted and dried and then sent to the tannery and they hadn't slipped by then you might get by. I thaw my green ones on the bench and baby sit and keep opening as they thaw and flesh as they do. As soon as they are thawed and fleshed out, turned and split into the salt table and then off to the tannery when dry. You could thaw them in salt and maybe rush it that way but I have never tried it. I flesh with the pressure washer so they are sopping wet when I am done and they soak up salt like a sponge but I think it penetrates better that way anyway myself.

  8. Basin Taxidermy


    sarge.. thanks for your input i have been stressing on this cause i may have messed up bad im thinking, and now i cannot get these capes back soon enough and Know my fate... however i did thaw, flesh, turn, split, salt and dry without any noticeable slippage. i in fact tugged and pulled on some areas to ensure that the hair was tight... i hope everything works out for me and i squeak through this one without any repercussions. I have also heard that i may have some problems with the PH levels at the tannery, would that make any sense as im not sure why that would affect anything after the cape has been salted and mostly dried. will there still be bacteria in the cape after salting and represent it self once hydrated in the pickle? if my understanding is correct, are'nt the capes stable in the pickle, and wouln'nt i be through the gaunlet by that time. thanks again for your input and time as it is VERY appreciated.
  9. Sarge

    Sarge A little too much Lord *hic*

    The Bacteria can survive the tanning process, and freezing. Make sure you add bactericide to the re-hydration and keep them as cold as you can, it should help. I watched multiple capes slip in school last summer. It is tough to be sure it won't slip and you won't be safe until the capes are mounted and dry. One of the ones that I saw slip, belonged to another student, he had test fitted and fought with his mule deer for over a week and while he was sewing the y incision the throat patch just started falling out in handfuls. When they are ready to go work quickly and efficiently.

    I have made it a rule for myself that once it is re-hydrated sew up long Y into a short Y incision if needed check the fit on the form thin eyes and anything that isn't done on the cape and then back in the freezer, do all my form prep set the antlers and then remove them. Then thaw it back out when I have all that done eyes set and slots done nothing that I can have done without the hide left to do.

    Thaw the hide do a final check on the cape hole repairs as it thaws and grease the form with paste and get busy. I just would rather have cold hands then buy a cape.

  10. Basin Taxidermy


    well im sweatin it for sure and ill have these capes back in bout a week so it is going be a long week. Also the tannery is wet tanning these capes and when i pick them up they will be in a frozen state. no need to rehydrate, correct? okay crazy question? can i soak these now tanned capes in water and use the bactericide while thawing? pros and cons vers dry tan and wet tan.
  11. deerhunt1985

    deerhunt1985 Only dead fish go with the flow

    man honestly if they make the tannery ok your in the clear, if its tanned, put it in a bag and sit in the fridge overnight to sweat and mount it up.....just because you soaked them in water doesnt necessarily mean they WILL slip but it didnt help any. IMO if they make it to the pickle they should be fine, dont sweat so much over it it wont help, next time you know how to thaw them and do it better. im not a 100% on this put the salt locks the hair down while its dry and the salt draws out bacteria sustaining liquids in the skin, if im wrong someone will correct me

    just trying to help
  12. Basin Taxidermy


    thanks you guys , i really appreciate the info. as you can tell i am nervous about this after all they are good paying customers and i would not like explaing this one. and i most certainly will chalk this up as experience and right my wrong in the future. this topic has got viewed many times already but really only two answered up, for that i thank you fellas..
  13. I thaw deer capes in water all the time, never have any slipping problems.

    Make sure the bucket or sink has been washed well with chlorax water and I add a couple capfulls fo chlorax.

    I have never seen bacteria survie any acid pickle, thats why you can store hides in a pickle for years if you keep a check on the pH once a week.
  14. trapperr

    trapperr New Member

    Here is how i thaw mine out , never a problem as of yet

  15. meopilite

    meopilite New Member

    LMAO Trapper. ur as bad as me using the bath tub. my kid wanted to take a shower and saw a deer hangin there. he had to wait his turn.

    i would not thaw in water unless it has been already tanned or at least salted. But if you were to add a bacterialcide to the water, there shouldnt be problems.

    When we tan, we cape it, salt it, wash it, and into the pickle. If i was to send the cape to a tannery, i would NOT get that cape wet without a way of killing bacteria.
  16. trapperr

    trapperr New Member

    LMAO , Your lucky it was not your wife !!! My tub would need a latter to get into !! Best thing i ever did when i designed my studio was to have a elevated tub , sure is convenient