Thursday, August 20, 2009

Tanning a Rattlesnake

We finally got around to tanning that rattlesnake hide that we found while rafting the Deschutes River 2 weeks ago. Wow - only 2 weeks ago... feels like months ago we were on the river!

Here's the snake, and the boy...

It was pretty easy for him to quickly peel the skin off the snake, and scrape the meat, membrane, and blood off the hide.

Usually we soak the snakeskins in a mixture of de-natured alcohol and glycerine... but we haven't been able to find the glycerine around town.

So... a tip off the internet pointed us to use Anti-freeze and soak the hide in it for 3-4 weeks. Makes sense - a-freeze has all the ingredients we usually use... and we have it around already.

Here's the hide in the a-freeze. After a day of soaking, we've turned the hide inside-out to get a better soaking.

In 3 weeks we'll pull it out, clean it and rub it with hand lotion, then sew up the ends and fill it with sand for a realistic feel.