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Why is my ph rising?

Discussion in 'Tanning' started by swampfoot, Mar 31, 2008.

  1. swampfoot

    swampfoot New Member

    I have recently changed my process before going into the pickle. I am talking about WT capes here. I use to turn, split, rough flesh and then salt the hides for several hours ( not until dry). Then rinse them to get off the salt. Then into the pickle. Never had it rise. I am using Rittels safety acid pickle Awesome stuff I might add. Lately I have been turning splitting rough fleshing like before but then I have been making a strong brine solution 100% saturated solution and soaking them for 4-5 hours then hanging to drip to remove most of the liquid, then placing in the pickle . I didn't think salt could raise the Ph. I haven't been rinsing them before the pickle. Maybe its not the salt and maybe its the fluids still leaching out of the hides from the salt concentration???? what do you think??? I have had to add safety acid to bring my pickle down here lately, and thats all I have changed. I figured a salt brine solution 100% saturated would be as effective if not better than the other way I have been doing it. Let me hear some opinions
  2. Monte

    Monte Missouri fur-Limited hair-tanning

    Swampfoot, The increase amount of salt will require more acid. You did not mention what the PH change was. AS a commercial tanner of leather and hair-on for over 40 years I have 100% salt brine cured more hides than I have dry salted.
    This is the way most cattle hides are cured too insure the quality of grain. Hair-slip hides make poor quality leather. Over 40 million cattle hides are cured this way every year in raceways kept moving by paddle wheels. The run time is about 8 hours to salt brine cure.

  3. cyclone

    cyclone Posts: 400001

    Where does pH come in there OS?

    If that is the only thing that's changed as described, then I'd have to suspect the water source, the purity of the salt or something that you've missed telling us. Do you weigh your capes down in the pickle? Gotten a new container? Changed locations? Water source?

    I can tell you that your saturated salt solution will not extract the glycosaminoglycans (some call hide glues, others non tannables etc..) as well as a 4 or 5 % salt solution.

    Pure salt has no effect on pH...
  4. Felpy

    Felpy New Member

    What's the pH of your "brine solution"? If I read right this is one step you have changed. If your brine has a high pH it could be affecting your pickle (could be a hard water problem).
  5. StuDaBaka

    StuDaBaka New Member

    My guess is you are not getting the same amount of 'existing fluid replacement' with your new process vs your old. You might could improve this by longer time in the brine and increasing agitation during the bath. I'm assuming you have not changed water sources or that you use different water sources for your different process steps. Also, are you cleaning/washing the hides?
  6. Monte

    Monte Missouri fur-Limited hair-tanning

    Old Shaver , I think you and I are saying the same thing. Because he put brine cured hides in, the PH went up requiring more acid to bring it back down. I prefer salt and alum pickle PH 3.0-3.5. I am not going into my formula but I have had no problems with that process for over 35 years.
    As with most post on here about tanning problems there is just know way we can get all of the variables.
  7. cyclone

    cyclone Posts: 400001

    I get your drift now OS.

    I'm not sure about deer but the pH of the human system is usually 7.4 and is buffered quite well. This doesn't mean that the pH of the skin is the same, it could vary. It would take a certain amount of acid to bring that pH to equilibrium. If the hide were not properly de-hydrated that buffering capacity remains within the hide. Re-hydrate properly and more of that buffering capacity is extracted along with the non-tannables..


    Well let's hope he comes back to give us a bit more info.