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Thread: Diesel Tanning?

  1. #1

    Diesel Tanning?

    Anybody tried Diesel tanning? I've heard it's quite good and surprisingly doesn't smell of diesel!
    Apparently it is done by: making a paste of 50% baking soda and 50% diesel, rub into the flesh side only and leave out side in a shaded area for two weeks , do this one more time and then wash with dish soap real good , then dry and that should do it.
    All sounds a bit too easy and with the cost of fuel these days maybe cheaper to get it proffesionally done!
    Before I try it I wouldn't mind hearing from anyone else that might have had a bash.
    Just found this link which covers 'Brain Tanning'[/url]

  2. #2
    Diesel tanning (or more accurately curing) works a treat - the trick is to mix the diesel & baking soda to the consistency of salad cream before applying. It's true the skins don't smell of diesel - after 6 months or so if left to air properly!

    I have skins I did this way years ago that don't smell of diesel any more and more importantly haven't slipped at all. It certainly works, but I wouldn't use it for dog training dummies though.

  3. #3
    As the Mole says, salad cream consistancy and make sure the hair does not slip!

    Mick I can show a couple of mine I made earlier!

  4. #4


    As the guys say Mayonaise type of consistancy, also leave it for a month. Make sure you scrape as much fless off as you can first though. I use a piece that I tanned this way to sit on when in a high seat and it is ideal


  5. #5
    Is the skin stretched and pinned to a board during the process?
    The above link isn`t working.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by basil
    Is the skin stretched and pinned to a board during the process?
    The above link isn`t working.
    Basil the skin is best stretched on a frame allowing as much are circulation as possible.

    I have a very good book on this some where! i will try dig it out and scan a few pages( of course I will give credit to the author and source!).

  7. #7
    this is a method of how a friend does his
    i am currently trying this method out

    Right here we go, stretch and nail your skin to a board skin up, I personally do not scrape all the fat off, and if I'm using the skin as a training skin then I do not even trim it.

    The mixture I use is baking soda ( bicarbonate of soda) and paraffin I use a smell free one. Put about a 1-2 kilo of baking powder in a bowl and add paraffin until you have a dryish paste (but must still stick together). cover the skin with the paste about 1cm thick. Make sure you go right out to the edges.

    When the skin is covered put it somewhere that is warm, not hot just warm, maybe a boiler room or heated work shop.

    I generally leave mine for 3-4 weeks and then check if the skin is dry in the middle by lifting a small part of the paste, which by now will be dry.

    If you think the skin is dry and hard, then brush the powder off with a wire brush, then find something solid with a couple of corners to soften the skin up again. This is done by placing the skin behind your solid object and pulling it from side to side, until it is supple, i find that when using a skin as a training aid it becomes supple quickly anyway.

    I hope there is enough info here for you to have a go.

    The skin should not smell of paraffin when you have finished. I always lick it and taste before letting the dogs loose on it, and I'm still here.

    looks and sounds simple enough to me and i hav seen the end result
    not as good a leather as the tanner i plan to use for some of my better skins can present, but definately a lot cheaper

  8. #8

    Re: Diesel Tanning?

    Quote Originally Posted by Monkey Spanker
    Just found this link which covers 'Brain Tanning'[/url]
    Evening MS

    Re Brain Tanning, My friend and I tried this with that young knocked down Roe I told you about last year. From memory we took the brains and mixed with ash (Might have been Potash ) before applying to the skin (Flesh side). The Hide was actually spread on a frame quite tightly. It must have worked as I seem to recall my friend made gloves or something from it (He fancies himself as Ray Mears).


  9. #9
    As promised, here are a couple of pages from the book.

  10. #10
    Thanks Deer man. I`ll be trying this in the summer months.

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