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Questions About Ez-100 Tan Process

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by 101stcurrahee, Jul 14, 2020.

  1. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member

    I just switched all my chemicals to Rittels so I can have tans better suited for garments and gentle washing. The instructions leave me wondering a few things.

    Can you reuse your degreasing solution and EZ-100 tanning solution or is it one time only?

    Their instructions say after degreasing and shaving return to the pickle. If I'm only degreasing can I skip returning it to the pickle and go straight to the tanning solution? My pickling solution has a lot of oil and fats in it so putting it back in after degreasing seems counterproductive. The tan is pretty acidic and the instructions say to adjust it after 30 minutes, so I'm thinking there is no need to return it to the pickle unless it was shaved...?

  2. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    No, you cannot reuse your tanning solution. Yes, you need to return it to the pickle after degreasing. I don't think you can reuse the degreasing solution, but I'm not sure on that one.

    Basically, if the directions tell you to do something, do it. Don't over think it or try to change it.
    Westcoast likes this.

  3. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member

    Is there an actual verified reason for needing to return it to the pickle after only decreasing?

    I understand the rationale of returning it to the pickle after shaving but haven’t seen anything suggesting there is a reason after degreasing.

    Won’t the hide just get greasy and oily again putting it back in? I’m not understanding why are you with degreaser just to throw it back in a bucket of grease.
  4. 13 point

    13 point Well-Known Member

    The pickle changes the the molecule fibers of the hide which in turn turns it to leather after tanning , returning it to the pickle after shaving insures it is fully penetrated you might say . As long as your PH numbers are in the realm of what is called for the pickle being dirty won’t matter , as it’s the acidity that is changing the fibers . As stated follow the directions, they are there for a reason and have been fine tuned to do what is needed for your best results.
  5. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member


  6. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    The question is why do you return back to the pickle after degreasing?
    A few reasons:
    Using the warm water to which opens the pores to let the grease out now cause other fluids to be leached into the skin. Hence why you put back into the pickle to ensure total pickling. Also depending on what your degreasing, bears it may take up to three times to ensure proper degreasing.
    Now can you use your degreasing liquid again? No I wouldn’t use it as it’s now cooled off and would need to be heated back up to be efficient again and plus now your putting more grease into another greasy situation that you may not now know if it’s degreased or now making that skin and hair more greasy even though it’s getting degreased. Plus you’ll have bacteria growing in that degreasing liquid.
  7. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member

    Thank you for answering the question.
  8. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member

    Ok it kind of seems like what I was worried about happened....

    Pulled them out of the pickle and tanned. Just took them out of the tan to rinse and my hands and the hides are covered in white bits that feel like super glue. Is this grease?

    If it is, can I degrease after tanning but before oiling since ez tan is washable, or will the degreaser pull out the tan?
  9. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    No you can’t degrease after tanning as the tan really probably didn’t adhere properly cause of the poor process you did.
    Start from scratch and place it back in the pickle and do the whole process over again the right way not what you may think or not sure of.
    Pickle 3 days
    Shave if needed now.
    Degrease warm tepid water with salt added 1/4 lb per gallon 104 *is nice.
    Do it 2-3 hrs
    Drain, back into the pickle overnight. Check to make sure it feels good and not greasy. drain,
    Neutralize, tan , check pH buffer at end of tan ) an hour before it’s time) raise it to 4.5-5 that sets the tan
    Drain , oil, fold next day open wipe off excess if needed and proceed.....
  10. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member

    What are you talking about?!! I followed the directions exactly like you guys just told me too....

    What you just told me to do is not what the directions say. Which is it?

    “Do it exactly as a directions say“

    “Your process was terrible and probably didn’t work, so it this way.”

    Last edited: Jul 15, 2020
  11. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    It's pretty simple. As per directions from the EZ-tan website. Shave then degrease, wash and rinse, return to the pickle.

    Since you should have degreased after shaving and you always return to the pickle after shaving, you should put it in the pickle. They know what works best for their product. You don't even need to think about it.

    1) Shave
    3) wash and rinse
    4) return to pickle for at least 24hr
    It's as easy as that.
  12. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member


    That is exactly what I did after this post(minus shaving) and the entire thing is sticky. If I followed the directions, why is it covered in whatever this is(fat, oil, grease)?

    Is this something to do with the EZ tan? The strange part is the other ones I did with regular dawn instead of the super solvent made specifically for degreasing came out great. No issues like these.
  13. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    You probably had a dirty pickle. I flesh everything off the hide, fat, meat, membrane, everything. Then I wash it quickly in Kemal-4 and rinse well. let it drip and then roll up in a towel for a few minutes then I put my clean hide into the pickle. There should be very little dirt,grease or oil in the pickle.
  14. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    You have a greasy cape and you need to start all over cause you didn’t follow directions cause if you did this wouldn’t be an issue. you didn’t shave for one thing and you didn’t say how you degreased the cape ( what was used) not shaving the skin is aiding in keeping the grease in the skin.
    It’s easy to say you followed directions to a T but working with ez-100 for 20 yrs I know for a fact you didn’t follow directions. Been there done that till I learned the right way.
    Lance.G likes this.
  15. Westcoast

    Westcoast Member

    I think that what everyone is trying to explain to you is that if it says to shave and degrease, then those exact steps must be completed completely. If it’s not shaved and only partially degreased, then you are not following the directions. You should not have went on to tan without the first steps being completed first. You stay on the degreasing step until there is “zero” grease. Then and only then do you continue in the process. Now, do as Mr Kotula stated and start over because that tan definitely did not take. The tanning isn’t the only step that is important, each step, especially degreasing is extremely important. Good luck and I hope it all works out
    Robert Baker and Frank E. Kotula like this.
  16. 101stcurrahee

    101stcurrahee Member

    Ok, that makes sense. But the directions do not say "repeat until thoroughly degreased." I followed them exactly, and it still came out greasy. If it's ok to keep degreasing that makes sense but that is not following the instructions exactly.... You've got me on the shaving part. I have no way to safely shave it.

    I did what you said and started over following the instructions, and thoroughly degreasing. After going through the entire process again once it was time to break them they all just pulled apart and tore.

    I've been using Curatan reliably for years with great results. Maybe I should just go back to that.