Thursday, 25 February 2010

Munt Jacket

A brace of Muntjacs made their way to Diplo HQ a couple of weeks ago - much needed protein top up for the freezer and Diplo Junior has plans to make himself a jacket. The Fallow deer here-abouts are pretty easy to skin but I'd forgotten just how tenacious these little critters are. There's very little fat on a Muntjac and in places (around the flanks & shoulders particularly) the flesh and the skin are almost inseparable. Much swearing and delicate knife-work later we had them both stripped and ready for a few days hanging before making their way into the freezer.
The hides have moved on to Shed 2 for curing and tanning. A salt petre cure, after removal of any stray bits of flesh and the tricky membrane that remains attached, takes 4 to 5 days. This is followed by a week's drying - when dry the last few bits of membrane and sinew can be scraped and rubbed away. Next is a good wash in Sodium Carbonate solution and a few rinses through with fresh water.
Meanwhile the tanning solution of Ammonium Alum Sulphate, Sodium Carbonate and Salt is prepared and the hides dunked in for a 4 to 5 day soak. This is where we're at right now. Next stage is a good wash in a Borax solution, much rinsing, drying and oiling. Let you know how we get on. MORE PELTS !


Toby Savage said...

Good show! I've seen Libyan's shove an airline in between skin and flesh, somewhere around the rear ankle, on a goat. That seemed to separate to two parts quite well, but I guess you knew that.

Diplomate said...

Ah - never tried it on a deer. I know it's a fairly standard trick with reptiles - aligators, monitor lizards and the like. I'll maybe try the goat trick next time. Workshop tips always gratefully received. - Blimey, i do hope this isn't connected but the "word verification" that just popped up is hymen !

Peter Ashley said...

This is classic Diplo stuff, thankyou. My word verification is 'monqu' so perhaps you're going to do a chimp next.

Thud said...

dDiplo...don't you have a primark nearby...caveman.