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Beef Hide Fleshing Question

Discussion in 'Tanning' started by kimmarie90, Jun 3, 2020.

  1. kimmarie90

    kimmarie90 New Member

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    Hello there! I tried using a pressure washer to flesh a beef hide to tan. The pressure washer had 3000 PSI, but I do not think I had the correct nozzle. It was borrowed from a family friend and they only had a yellow, green and black nozzle. So when I was trying to flesh the hide with it, the blubbery stuff would fluff up but it would not slough off. So eventually we decided to flesh by hand w a knife and we still did not get everything off we were supposed to. I went ahead and salted it. Is it too late to flesh it some more? This bovine has some thick skin!

    Ignorance is bliss, this kind of work is not for the faint of heart.
     
  2. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    No it is not to late to flesh it. You need the turbo top for the pressure washer. You should get a fleshing knife /blade and beam I sure wouldn't want to use a knife to flesh beef hide.
     

  3. kimmarie90

    kimmarie90 New Member

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    Thank you! It was not fun or ideal last night with the knife! Should I be worried about the hide spoiling?
     
  4. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    There always worries of spoilage. Salt it drain the fluid that is pulled from the hide. Re salt keep the fluid drained off the hide. You can dry salt it if fleshed well with no fat or meat still on the hide will keep a few months in summer be sure all parts of the hide is dry .worries are bugs borax can control alot of the insects.
     
  5. kimmarie90

    kimmarie90 New Member

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    It’s salted now. Will have to get some borax.

    We really do know better than to process a beef in May in the Midwest, but I have a rather unintelligent brother in law, who talked my father into this. Never again!
     
  6. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Don't add borax on the hide especially if you want it hair on. It can cause issues with the Ph during pickle, Just get as much meat and fat off as you can, rub salt into it and hang to dry. Next day shake off and repeat for at least 2 or 3 days. Store in a dry cool location. Once pretty much dry but still flexible,I roll them in half skin to skin and then roll up and stand it up with open side down. I then box em up and send to a tannery.
     
    Keith Daniels likes this.
  7. kimmarie90

    kimmarie90 New Member

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    Should I just scrape off the salt I have on there now and shave some more off the skin side?

    Also I should not have it rolled now?
     
  8. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Make sure all of the red meat and as much fat as possible is off and resalt it but let the fluids drain off as the salt pulls a ton of moisture out. I hang then over a 2x4 thin side up and skin side up if that makes sense?
     
  9. kimmarie90

    kimmarie90 New Member

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    That does make sense! Thank you so much!
     
  10. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    You are welcome. This is the first year in quite a while that I didn't get any in and I charge heavy for them, it must be this pandemic crap as well.
     
  11. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    I disagree if hide is going to be kept very long out of a freezer not adding borax. Yes borax can cause the ph to rise in pickle. All that needs to be done is to wash / rinse off. 10 of thousands of hides each year are fleshed along with borax.
     
    Frank E. Kotula likes this.
  12. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    You can disagree but please answer this, are cow hides fleshed with borax, ones intended to be tanned fur on? I am also a trapper and am full aware of using borax on trapper dried K9s when turning them on the stretcher but please recommend a tannery that instructs folks to apply it to cow hides. If one tannery actually suggests this I will admit I am wrong.
     
  13. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    I never read where any tannery recommends useing borax on any hide, cape or fur . I think your point is mute.
     
  14. joeym

    joeym Jeannette & Joey @ Dunn's Falls

    Tractor Supply sells a very good rotary nozzle for around $40. You will be shocked at the difference in the way it fleshes. If you can get a rotary nozzle today, simple re-flesh the skin and repeat the salting process. There is a huge amount of drainage on a cow hide. After salting, I roll them up and place in a Rubbermaid Tote. Elevate it off the bottom using bricks and boards. After 24 hours, re-salt, and drape over a 2 X 4 of a piece of 2" PVC pipe. Place a fan on one end blowing through the center. When it stops draining and begins to get "doughy" you can start to fold it. Keep the air circulating around it. When completely folded, or rolled, it must be dried rock hard before shipping. I send them to Moyle. They have one price for cow hides, (around $440.00) which allows me to know my profit margin immediately.
     
  15. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    Ok if you check the old archives you’ll find very prominent tannery owner and shavers that have recommended this method of using borax to flesh with and even throw in your freezer prior to sending it out to a tannery.
    Yes your correct that the pH will rise if you don’t tell them or if your doing it making sure it’s rinsed off!
    Now, why don’t we recommend it in today’s world? It’s folks not really willing to gain knowledge on proper steps in tanning . I want it quick and easy cause we’re lazy. Let’s be honest as I’m correct with all the rub on tans or simple pickle and tan in one.
    So yes go ahead and use borax but remember what the outcome can end up being if you don’t learn or explain to your tannery what you did.
     
  16. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    we are to assume that that a salt dryed hide is not going to be rehydrated and washed before it goes into the pickle at home or professional Tannery.

    The suggestion using borax was not to preserve the hide but to prevent insect damage if it was going to be kept for more than a few months.
     
  17. cyclone

    cyclone Posts: 400001

    NO BORAX!
     
    Keith Daniels likes this.
  18. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Will you elaborate?
     
  19. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Ok Frank I've been using many commercial tanneries for over 15 years and have never gotten an instruction sheet that suggests using borax during any of the steps. If it was once used in the past they must either feel that it is no longer needed or detrimental to the process. I believe both to be true. If kept in a cool dry location with air flow bugs have never bothered with salted hides in my possession after 2 years in a dried state.
     
  20. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    I agree a dry salted hide can be stored with no insect problem it kept in a proper location. You as a taxidermist understand the conditions needed and made or have a proper place to store. But if a hide is left in a say woodshed or a out building. The case for insects problems in the summer is greatly increased. This is why I bought up insect problem in this post. As Kimmarie90 did not state her next actions to be done with the beef hide. I'd like to hear more from cyclone on this subject other then that borax will raise the ph. In the pickling.