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Can A Tanned Cape Go Bad?

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by E. Byrd, Dec 19, 2018.

  1. E. Byrd

    E. Byrd Member

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    i recently purchased a cape on here and tried to mount it up tonight. It wouldn’t hold a stitch no matter how easy I was. It actually tore in several places just from trying to pull it over the head. Then the tucking tool would just push through like a razor even after I cut the form out much bigger than normal. I finally got pissed off and wasn’t gonna pass off a pieced together mount and I grabbed it by the brisket skin and tugged and it ripped right off the form. Is this normal or did I waste 180 bucks?
     
    Swtchmob21 likes this.
  2. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Sorry, you wasted a 180 bucks. I have mounted skins that had been tanned up to 15 years prior with no issues. The latest was a bear that was tanned 12 years ago. It sounds like you have, from what I understand is called acid rot.
     
    John C likes this.

  3. E. Byrd

    E. Byrd Member

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    That’s what someone else said. That sucks but that’s just a lesson learned I guess.
     
  4. E. Byrd

    E. Byrd Member

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    I tried to upload a video of how easy I could tear it but it wouldn’t let me. This is where every stitch tore out AEC4B627-C068-4B7A-AC6A-CFD363C97B45.jpeg
     
  5. scottdawg

    scottdawg Member

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    If I sold a cape that did that a refund would be in order!
    I hope the seller sees this thread and makes it right
     
    3bears likes this.
  6. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    I had a tanned cape go bad. It was a full deer hide that I had professionally tanned 20-some years ago. It hung in my home for a long time with no problems, but when I moved a couple years ago I hung it up in my cabin and within two years it was rotten. I think it was the salt content in the hide along with the high humidity at times in my cabin that did it in. Incidentally, I have a shoulder mount in my cabin that I tanned well over 20 years ago and it is just fine even after decades in that environment. It really all depends on the tanning process. In any case, if you bought that cape from someone, then they should at the very least refund your money. If not, then please post their name on here to warn everyone else.
     
    3bears likes this.
  7. Paul B

    Paul B Active Member

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    Acid rot. Most tanneries if not all have a shelf life in the dry state, need to be soaked up within a year and frozen.
     
  8. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    If that is true, then what about after they are mounted? Wouldn't they rot then too?
     
  9. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Sure, it is possible but the glue holds it in place and holds it together.
     
  10. Trophy Specialist

    Trophy Specialist Well-Known Member

    I suppose your right. I've torn apart lots of old, tanned mounts that I could rip the hide off in chunks without too much effort. Sure can't rip a fresh tanned cape like that.
     
  11. Paul B

    Paul B Active Member

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    Its when you hydrate the old tan is when you will find if the leather is stable or not, left in a dry state they can last indefinitely if temps are stable in the environment their kept in.
     
  12. Dave York

    Dave York Well-Known Member

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    I don’t know what they used back in the 60s but I had some hides tanned back then. 40 years latter I could grab and stretch them like they fresh from the tannery.
     
  13. Jimmy Rimrock

    Jimmy Rimrock Yeah, they come to snuff the rooster

    couple good points made here so far. The type of tan used will affect how much acid rot you are going to get. With any "mystery tan", cut a sample piece off the back and rehydrate it to see if the whole thing will work. Sorta tough with a lifesize I know. You might have to add some alum to your salt and water rehyd bath. That's an old timer trick. Don't expect it to mount up like a fresh hi qual tan. It will be a pain in the a$$ typically. It will pay in the long run to spend some money or buy from a reputable source with a guarantee. You also need to realistic about your capabilities. Good Luck
     
  14. whitetails and fish only

    whitetails and fish only Well-Known Member

    I had a bear rug that was professionally tanned that totally fell apart after 30 years.
     
  15. Swtchmob21

    Swtchmob21 Active Member

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    Acid Riot can ruin everything!!

    A couple years so I had a life size Lord derby eland go completely bad we had to patch it together and use other parts of animals but what a mess it took a couple years off of my life
     

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  16. rigbobby

    rigbobby Active Member

    I keep all tanned capes in the freezer.