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To Tan Mink And Muskrat Skins


Before tanning, the skin should always be thoroughly cleansed

in warm water, and all fat and superfluous flesh removed. It should

then be immersed in a solution made of the following ingredients:

Five gallons of cold soft water; five quarts wheat bran; one gill

of salt; and one ounce of sulphuric acid. Allow the skins to soak in

the liquid for four or five hours. If the hides have been previously

salted, the sal
should be excluded from the mixed solution. The

skins are now ready for the tanning liquor, which is made in the

following way: into five gallons of warm, soft water, stir one peck

of wheat bran and allow the mixture to stand in a warm room until

fermentation takes place. Then add three pints of salt, and stir until

it is thoroughly dissolved. A pint of sulphuric acid should then be

poured in gradually, after which the liquor is ready. Immerse the

skins and allow them to soak for three or four hours. The process

of fleshing is then to be resorted to. This consists in laying the

skin, fur side down, over some smooth beam, and working over the

flesh side with a blunt fleshing tool. An old chopping knife, or

tin candlestick, forms an excellent substitute for the ordinary

fleshing knife, and the process of rubbing should be continued

until the skin becomes dry, after which it will be found to be

soft and pliable. The skin of the muskrat is quite tender, and the

fleshing should be carefully performed.