The most natural method to tan any hide is brain tanning. Most animals have enough brains to successfully tan their own hide, and it is said that the result is wonderful. However, this is something we have not yet tried. We would like to move onto brain tanning one day, but right now we have so much stuff going on in our lives that time efficiency is a big factor. We use a solution of battery acid and salt, and it works great.
6 Rabbit furs
2 gallons water
1 cup Battery acid
2 lbs Salt (cheap, but must be without iodine)
Large, plastic colander
Five gallon bucket
Wooden or plastic spoon or stick
Clean, non-metallic weight (like a river rock)
One of the most common problems with tanning pelts is that the fur will “slip”, meaning that patches of fur come loose and fall out. If your pelts slip, they are ruined. There are two main approaches to avoiding this issue, and both must be met.
If the hide is allowed to get warm, the bacteria that cause decay will do their damage.
To stop the bacteria that will rot your hides, you must effectively poison them. Salt goes a long way to doing this, but acidity is far more deathly. Salt is used in conjunction with acid, so that the acid does not burn the furs.
To ensure that the hide is waterproof, you will need to oil them.
The leather of rabbit pelts is so soft that it does not require a special needle. If you are using a sewing machine, be sure to tack it together first, as the sleek fur will slide out of place if not held together. We have made blankets, bags, slippers, footwarmers, hats and more using our own furs.
Tanning your own rabbit furs and turning them into something beautiful takes work and patience, but it creates a gift too rich to buy.