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Formic acid & oil Vs. complete tanning

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by michael p., Jan 18, 2010.

  1. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    Got a question and want some "experienced" answers. What is a tan going to accomplish over simply pickling and oiling a hide? When I say pickle I am referring to a formic pickle.

    I have some old (if 14 years is old) work that was simply pickled, shaved & neutralized and although the Taxidermy work itself leaves a lot to be desired, the hair lost no color, no cracking or shrinking that is noticeable,.....so I am wondering, what are the PROVEN advantages of following through with a tan because I have also seen some 5-10 year old tanned hides that look like crap.

    Do you think that the amount of shaving may be the biggest difference over one or the other when it comes to a suitable skin ???
  2. Silverbrook

    Silverbrook New Member

    I formic acid tan everything. Flesh,salt (twice) hang it for a few days to drain any excess bodily fluids and drop in the fornic. Always keep an eye on the ph.
    I usually shave them in a couple of weeks if I can get to them.(Iv'e had them in there as long as 5 yrs. with no harmful affects) After pulling them from the formic I drop them into a bin of cold plain tap water for about 5 minutes to plump up drain an shave nice and thin.Neutralize,wash,tumble and oil (I use protal from van dykes).Roll the hide up bag in a cool place until the next day and mount it up. If there is excessive oul just wash the cape in dawn and rinse wall. I have no problems with shrinkage and use only a few pins to hold everything in place. Early season deer turn out awesome. I have deer on my wall that I mounted in 1987 and they are like the day they were done.
    I think the shaving is very important. The more leather that is on the form the greater the chance it will take in moisture (it shouldn't d this if it's properly oiled.)or have other issues like drumming.

  3. BDrake

    BDrake Active Member

    Better repost in the tanning section, that is where the tanning gurus hangout ;)
  4. B.S.O'Hare

    B.S.O'Hare Member

    just one person wants to share?
  5. verne

    verne Well-Known Member

    Sound`s like krowtann whitetail formula .
  6. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    You really think so ? (i'm asking seriously)
  7. verne

    verne Well-Known Member

    Well there is formic acid ,krow-oil, mineral oil ,along with other acids and a tanninig agent.so a pickle with oil.
  8. ljones

    ljones 1994 wasco award winner

    back in the early 1980's when i first started experimenting with tanning, i used a method i got from a guy by the name of Ivan comeaux from Morgan city ,La , the best i remember there was no pre- pickling it used ammonium alum, salt the skin was left in that solution for several days then shaved neutralized and oiled, i still have some heads from that time and the skins have held up well , does anyone know if Ivan is still around?
  9. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Use the search button! ;) ;D
  10. D.Price

    D.Price Well-Known Member

    Michael p, what got you to thinking about this? ::)
  11. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    Just trying to figure out if i'm ****ing up doing it the old way :)
  12. Becky P

    Becky P One must believe the glass is half full.

    I would think so especially since some say it's not a full tan. They classify it as a pickle and it does have oil so...

    I'll use my KTed bobcat once again. KTed bobcat hung outside in all kinds of weather for 5 or 6 years before losing hair. Just took a two year old mount out of a shed that was somewhat damp to get the form for reuse. This was a commercially tanned hide and the hair was falling out. Neither were in ideal conditions but the bobcat held up longer in this instance. Hanging the wall, under normal household conditions, I really don't think it'll matter which is used.
  13. 4txdrm

    4txdrm Most expensive thing about quality is ignoring it.

    Michael P I have deer 20 years old that I can say the same about. The only reason I use a oil is I get a better looking finished mount with less shrinkage, I also have taken apart to change antlers out on dead beat customers that don't pay. the hide is lots more manageable as well. I just feel better by adding the Liqua Tan. I will agree though I have done several without the oil. The only issues was dried out more and had a harder look. Actually a good Question.
  14. Glen Conley

    Glen Conley KARMA GOOSE R.I.P. 2006-2006

    You are about to see photos of the end results of a citric pickle. You will find that probably the most common problem with formic users is producing a similar end result, just not quite profound enough that it can be picked up with the naked eye.

    Let me answer the question with a question. Just how in thee Hell is a "tanning agent" going to penetrate that mess of mass?

    Here in the near future, oldshaver and I are going to open up some worm cans. Cyclone didn't know it until now, but he's going to get to play too.

    We'll be putting the thread into the tutorial category.

    Attached Files:

  15. Glen Conley

    Glen Conley KARMA GOOSE R.I.P. 2006-2006

    Some one (or more) speak up and tell me what will need to be explained about these photos so that the information can be put to practical use.
  16. Becky P

    Becky P One must believe the glass is half full.

    The first one looks like a blob. The other two look like planets. Start 'splainin' ;)
  17. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    The second one looks like a sperm egg.
  18. D.Price

    D.Price Well-Known Member

    What the hell is a "sperm egg"? :-\
  19. Becky P

    Becky P One must believe the glass is half full.

    LOL, I was wondering the same D.
  20. sperm egg...uhhh uuhhhhh...i know..its where the sperm hatches from...yea thats it...yesssssss...got one