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McKenzie Tan Instructions

The "Brush On" Tan for the Professional Taxidermist!

Step 1: 

After skinning, turn lips, ears and eyes; remove red meat and fat.  


Step 2:

Salt the hide as soon as possible to inhibit the growth of bacteria. Completely cover the flesh side of the skin with non-iodized salt and let it set for 4 to 12 hours. You may proceed to step #3, or shake off most of the salt, place the salted skin in a plastic bag and freeze the skin until you are ready to continue the tanning process.

Step 3: 

Rinse the skin briefly in cool water.

Step 4:

You are now ready to mix the pickle solution. We recommend the following pickle using Saftee Acid:

The formula is 1/2 fluid ounce of Saftee Acid and 1 pound of non-iodized salt for each gallon of water. Minimum batch size recommended is 5 gallons of pickle for each whitetail cape. (It is important to maintain the pH of the pickle solution between 1.0 and 2.0 at all times. We recommend the 0-3 range pH paper for testing. The pH of some water may require that you add more or less Saftee Acid to achieve the correct level. To lower the pH, add more acid.) Pickle the skin for 3 days, stirring and checking the pH of the pickle solution each day.


** Note: When pickling greasy skins (i.e. Raccoon, beaver, or bear), they should be degreased during the pickling stage. To degrease, add 1 ounce Tannery Degreaser to every 5 gallons of pickle.

Step 5:  

Remove the skin from the pickle and drain in order to perform the shaving process. Thicker skins such as deer should be shaved, but thin skins such as bobcat, etc. can be simply fleshed of all membrane. After shaving, we recommend returning the skin to the pickle for at least 12 hours.

Step 6:  

Remove the skin from the pickle and mix a neutralizing solution that consists of 1 tablespoon of Baking Soda to each gallon of water and soak the skin for 30 minutes. Minimum 3 gallons for each whitetail cape.

Step 7: 

Take the skin out of the neutralizing solution, drain, and roll in a towel (flesh side out) to dry for 15 minutes. Wearing rubber gloves, brush McKenzie Tan on the entire flesh side or the skin. Allow the tan to penetrate for 4 to 5 hours.

Step 8: 

Rinse the skin in clean cold water. Next, roll skin in the towel (hair side out) to remove excess moisture.

Step 9:  

The skin is now ready to mount or freeze for later use.

Please note:  If you do not have enough time to complete any one of the steps, you may freeze the hide at any point in the process and thaw the hide and return to the process at a later time.

Keep out of reach of children.

As we have no control over the use and application of this product, McKenzie sports Products and Van Dyke's make no warranty whatsoever, expressed or implied, for McKenzie Odor Eliminator with respect to its use.