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View Full Version : Curing a snake skin?


270WSM
October 1st, 2010, 07:18 PM
Hey guys anybody on here got any advice or recipe for curing a snake skin? I have two 5 foot rattlin snakes we have killed recently and would like to preserve the hides.

JT's Skullworks
October 1st, 2010, 10:06 PM
I buy the kits from VanDykes taxidermy. There are pretty easy to use and come with directions. I actually have a rattler in the freezer that I havent gotten to yet.

Search their website www.Vandykestaxidermy.com

firecapt186
October 2nd, 2010, 01:59 AM
I've used the reptile cure stuff from Van Dykes, it works good and easy to use. What ever you do, don't put salt on it.

Thunderhead
October 4th, 2010, 10:50 AM
Depends on if you want it dry or moist when you're done. You want to use them for something or just hang them at the camp, etc.? I have a recipe that came from Sweetwater TX, which is the home of the big snake roundup. It's a method that leaves them soft and moist. If you want it, let me know and I'll post it.

270WSM
October 4th, 2010, 11:02 AM
Depends on if you want it dry or moist when you're done. You want to use them for something or just hang them at the camp, etc.? I have a recipe that came from Sweetwater TX, which is the home of the big snake roundup. It's a method that leaves them soft and moist. If you want it, let me know and I'll post it.

Lookin to hang them for display. I was told one time to use anti freeze done one like that and had to throw it away. I am going to order one of those kits from VanDykes as suggested and try that but am also willing to try other "recipes" LOL. Thanks

Thunderhead
October 4th, 2010, 12:30 PM
Lookin to hang them for display. I was told one time to use anti freeze done one like that and had to throw it away. I am going to order one of those kits from VanDykes as suggested and try that but am also willing to try other "recipes" LOL. Thanks

The recipe I have uses glycerin and keeps the skin very soft. I'll post it in case you or someone else wants to try it. It works. I kept a rattlesanke hide rolled up in a ziplock bag for several years after I tanned it. I finally found someone to make me a gunsling with it. Turned out great.

---Skin snake, split hide down the belly. Scrap all fat and tissue from inside of hide. Wash hide in warm soapy water then rinse in clean water. Dry off and soak 4 hours in heavily salted water. Rinse hide in clean water. Dry off and put in a solution of 4 parts glycerin to 1 part water. Leave 4 and 1/2 days for large hides and 3 and 1/2 days for small hides. Remove and wipe off with rag. Hang in shady place for several days, unrolling hide every day.

---I used a mason jar to soak mine in. I used 4 small bottles of glycerin that can be bought at any Wal-mart, K-mart, or drug store. They keep it where the bandaids and wound dressing is. Glycerin is used to keep burns moist.

guitar_playn_guru
October 4th, 2010, 01:54 PM
you can go to the leather pouch in lafayette and buy the reptile curing liquid not sure of its price but i know the one for mammal hides is like $50

CKC
October 4th, 2010, 07:16 PM
I did tanned a snake skin just last month. The most important part is to scrape all the flesh off the inside. I soaked it in white vinegar and salt water for a day or two to kill any bacteria then took it out and rinsed it off real good. I laid in on a board good and flat with the flesh side up and tacked it down and let it dry for a day, then applied an equal mix of glycerin and rubbing alcohol twice a day with a paint brush for 3 or 4 days. After that take the skin and lay it between some paper towels and put it between two boards with something heavy on top to draw out the unneeded moisture. I left it like that a couple of days. It is pretty soft and looks good. I'm going to make a gun sling with mine as well.

guitar_playn_guru
October 4th, 2010, 11:50 PM
thats good information and alot cheaper than store bought curing chemicals....

CKC
October 5th, 2010, 12:04 AM
The hardest part was finding the liquid glycerin. I thought that they would have it at a pharmacy, but all they had there was glycerin suppositories and a little tube of it that you... well I'll let you figure out what the tube of glycerin is used for. I found a 6 ounce bottle of liquid glycerin at Hobby Lobby, you could do a few snake skins with that bottle.

Thunderhead
October 6th, 2010, 02:19 PM
CKC, here are the pics that you wanted. Black Hills Leather Shop in Laredo, TX is where I got the work done. They have a website. I basically picked out the sling I wanted and they put the snake skin where another color of leather usually goes.

CKC
October 6th, 2010, 07:47 PM
That's nice!! That is sort of how I want to do mine. I already have the sling and need to cut a design out to inlay the skin. If I don't come across a copperhead soon, then I am going to use a stingray hide that I have. I'll just make another one later on when I find a snake to use.