How to preserve a snake skin?

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How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby shootable Goose » Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:10 pm

I killed a baby rattle snake and skinned it. I didn't add anything to it. I just flattened it out in between two 2x4s and am waiting for it to dry. When I checked on it this mornin it was starting to smell. A smell that I Have never smellt before. Is there anything I can do to help "preserve" the skin or do I just continue I let it dry and then it will be fine?
Thanks!
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby The Waterfowler » Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:42 pm

Needs to be soaked in a 50/50 mixture of isopropyl alcohol and glycerine for a few days then oiled. Make sure all the residual meat is off also. I wheel the inside of the ones I do.
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby TomKat » Tue Jul 03, 2012 1:14 pm

Can he soak it in anti freeze?
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby shootable Goose » Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:19 pm

I also read I can rub borax on it?
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby muskyduck » Tue Jul 03, 2012 2:30 pm

shootable Goose wrote:I also read I can rub borax on it?

The Waterfowler wrote:Needs to be soaked in a 50/50 mixture of isopropyl alcohol and glycerine for a few days then oiled. Make sure all the residual meat is off also. I wheel the inside of the ones I do.


Does a borax solution (borax w/ water) work well with snakes, like in fish? Or does that make it too stiff?
I know straight borax or any other dry preserv will really stiffen the skin and it can becaome somewhat brittle. I believe that is the reason for the glycerine and oil so that is keeps the skin plyable. Am I right with that?
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby shootable Goose » Tue Jul 03, 2012 5:13 pm

The Waterfowler wrote:Needs to be soaked in a 50/50 mixture of isopropyl alcohol and glycerine for a few days then oiled. Make sure all the residual meat is off also. I wheel the inside of the ones I do.

I just made this solution and put it into it. I also fleshed it first. In a few days when I take it out, and let it dry, will it keep it from rolling up and getting wrinkles in it?
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby Bull Island Boy » Sat Jul 07, 2012 1:27 pm

muskyduck wrote:
shootable Goose wrote:I also read I can rub borax on it?

The Waterfowler wrote:Needs to be soaked in a 50/50 mixture of isopropyl alcohol and glycerine for a few days then oiled. Make sure all the residual meat is off also. I wheel the inside of the ones I do.


Does a borax solution (borax w/ water) work well with snakes, like in fish? Or does that make it too stiff?
I know straight borax or any other dry preserv will really stiffen the skin and it can becaome somewhat brittle. I believe that is the reason for the glycerine and oil so that is keeps the skin plyable. Am I right with that?

ive done both but adding straight borax to the skin will work but it will be stiffer.if you use the alchol methoud as described above it will be more flexable and keep its color better :thumbsup:
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby bluezman1957 » Tue Jul 10, 2012 7:40 pm

Being that I live in the desert, I get to tan about 100 snake hides every year. It depends on what you want to do with and how you want it to look. You first need to skin it and take a regular spoon and scrape all of the meat and tissue off of it. Then lay it flat out scale side down and stretch and pin it. Use regular table salt - a lot of it - coat it totally. Leave it alone for several days then rinse it off in cool water. You can buy "snake tan" at Tandy Leather if you only need to do a few snakes. You paint it on both sides, roll it up and put into the fridge for 24 hours. Rinse it off with cool water. If you are making a rug, just use leather glue and back it with whatever you want. To bring out the color - and do not scrape off the scales if you want the color back - mix denatured alcohol(from a paint store) and clear shellac in a 50/50 mixture and brush on the scale side. The color will look like it did right after you killed the snake or before you dried it out.
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Re: How to preserve a snake skin?

Postby callumcuffumkillum » Wed Jul 11, 2012 2:59 pm

If your wanting to just put it on a board to go on the wall, borax and wood glue is all you need. I just get the big pieces of meat off it and then tack it down to a board to dry. I would sandwich it like you tried because i would think it would have trouble drying out since it would be somewhat air tight but i could be wrong. Once it is dry then put would glue on it and then sandwich it tightly with two boards. Or simply leave it tacked down with nails. Whatever look you want. This way is very simple and when given time to dry the smell will die off. You could even try drying it good with paper towels and then add a little borax and go straight to gluing it down. Never done it that way but might work
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