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Deerskins into Buckskins: How to Tan with Brains, Soap or Eggs; 2nd Edition Paperback


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Deerskins into Buckskins: How to Tan with Brains, Soap or Eggs; 2nd Edition + Basic Butchering of Livestock & Game + A Guide to Canning, Freezing, Curing & Smoking Meat, Fish & Game
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Backcountry Publishing; 2 Rev Upd edition (September 15, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0965867242
  • ISBN-13: 978-0965867245
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (73 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,541 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

...easy to understand and useful if you're interested in preserving and using your deer hide to make a pair of trousers or leather gloves. Get started, buy a copy. Enjoy. -- Cody Beers, Wyoming Wildlife, March 1998

...proves to be a comprehensive guide to natural leather making. -- American Library Association, BOOKLIST, December 15, 1997

By far the best book on the subject. -- Carla Emery, author, The Encyclopedia of Country Living

Get this book. You'll be amazed at the unexpected ease of the process and more importantly your results. -- Jim Riggs, author, Blue Mountain Buckskin

I have successfully completed dozens of buckskins under the mentoring of numerous experts. It is obvious that Matt has created a 'quantum leap' in the art. His process dramatically reduces the time and work, resulting in the nicest buckskin I have ever made. -- Jeff Damm, engineer and backyard tanner

If a guy couldn't tan a hide with this he should stay out of the woods! -- Ted Fry, Raptor Archery

Information and practical advice you won't find in any other book. Easy to read yet amazingly thorough, with just a touch of twisted humor in the right places. A terrific resource! -- Susan Jennys, Muzzleblasts, June 1998

Matt Richards brings tanning to a level of simplicity that is accessible to anyone. Experimentation combined with years of tanning for a living and a thorough study of leather chemistry, has resulted in a simple method that produces excellent results. -- American Survival Guide, January 1998

The authors intimate understanding of deerskins, tools, processes, and problems bears witness to a tremendous depth of knowledge about his craft. Deerskins into Buckskins is a highly recommendable work....this book deserves a place on your bookshelf -- Scott Jones, Bulletin of Primitive Technology, spring 1998 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

Deerskins into Buckskins is currently the bestselling home-tanning guide in America and its even made a national Independent Publisher Bestseller List....its a great book but I must admit we've been quite surprised by its popularity (pleasantly, mind you) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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I tried my first ever tanning of a hide using this book.
Thomas P. Troyer
This is one of the best books I have ever read on tanning, I only wish that they had a digital copy.
Amazon Customer
The book is well written and easy to understand and follow.
Perry L. Wilbur

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

85 of 85 people found the following review helpful By George Lee on January 13, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book has many virtues, but the one I was most grateful for is that Matt make it impossible NOT to understand how to wet-scrape braintan. He anticipates the reader's every possible wrong turn. So many skilled craftsmen are tongue-tied. Even if they know what they are doing, they cannot put themselves into the mind of a newcomer to their craft. Matt not only has a rare knack for doing just that, he also knows how to keep the nervous newbie calm. Anyone who follows Matt's directions will have a beautiful piece of buckskin, soft as velvet but tough enough to turn the meanest thorns...
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62 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Vaughn Terpack: jterpack@greenwood.net on January 11, 1998
Format: Paperback
Writing a regular outdoors column for four SC newspapers and having been involved with primitive skills for over ten years, I can honestly say that Mr. Richards' book on hide tanning with the brain-tan method is one of the best I have seen. I first learned to tan hides with this method when I was still in high school and have enjoyed making my own buckskin ever since.
When I got my copy of Deerskins into Buckskins in the mail, my learning started with the picture on the cover and didn't stop until I reached the back cover. Specifically, the front cover photo shows a skin sack smoking, but the hide is hung from the rump not the neck as I had been doing. Mr.Richards goes on to say that this allows the hide to hang with fewer folds and so, prevents streaking from the smoke. He's right!!
Probably the best bit of knowledge I gained from this book is glueing the seam with regular elmer's glue, instead of sewing it shut or using clothespins. The glueing makes a tighter seam, is faster than the other methods, and because it is air-tight, it forces the smoke to penetrate the hide instead of rushing out of the gaps. Due to the pressure, the hide balloons, further reducing any folds or wrinkles in the hide. This is the fastest method I have ever tried.
These two bits of knowledge alone make the book worth the price asked but when you combine it with the author's easy, simple style of writing, you have a true gem. I've read it from cover to cover at least twice and will undoubtedly read it again. Take it from an experienced tanner, you won't be dissappointed.
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37 of 38 people found the following review helpful By C. H. Poorman on April 8, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book shows, in great detail and easy-to-understand language, the basic steps for natural tanning. Compared to other books I have read, this one really covers all the bases in a clear and concise way. Where other instruction books leave you saying, "Huh?", this one caters to those of us who REALLY have never done this before!
Excellent step-by-step directions. I highly recommend this book.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By Jim Emerson on September 5, 2001
Format: Paperback
I tried for fifteen years to successfully brain tan a deer hide. I read every book I could on the subject. I usually made rawhide chew bones for the dogs.
Since buying "Deerskins into Buckskins" I have successfully tanned about 65 hides,and the dogs haven't had a chew bone.
If you want to be successful at brain tanning, buy Mr. Richards' book and use his simple method. You won't be disappointed.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Earl E. on August 22, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I found this book very interesting and informative for anyone who wants to learn how to tan hides for making clothes. For that purpose I don't believe one could find a more useful guide. It covers in detail, everything from how to skin deer in order to get the most out of the hide, to sewing methods. however, the book only covers tanning hides for making clothes and apparel from buckskin. I found no mention of tanning hides with hair on. If you are looking for information on tanning hides with the hair on, it might not be what you are looking for.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By chamsa@net-connect.net on June 25, 1998
Format: Paperback
I review many books for one medium or another, centering on rendezvous crafts. This is the best book on the subject, along with clear instructions and well done photographs to highlight one process or another. The only thing that I can write about this title is GET THIS BOOK! Layout is outstanding. I have seen too many books with good information and **horrible** layout. This book represents a perfect combination of outstanding layout and excellent textual presentation. You **will not** get any better.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Screamin' Eagle on September 3, 2001
Format: Paperback
When I recieved my copy, I did not know anything about brain tanning hides. With this book, I learned how to tan, and successfully completed 15 of 30 hides this past summer (the other 15 were tanned in a different fasion). I am so confident in my abilties to brain tan with this book and personal assistance from all the folks at braintan.com, that I have already placed orders for 80 hides this season, plus panning to pick up additional hides along the way.There are other books and videos available on the market dealing with this, but my personal recomondation for you is to get "Deerskins into Buckskins" to guide the beginner and refresh the advanced tanner in brain tanning deer skins.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By jonathan jeffer on September 3, 2001
Format: Paperback
This is really an excellent how-to and reference book. It is easy to read and explanations are very clear. Matt writes with an easy sense of humor that draws you into the subject.
Tanning skins is a subject that is treated superficially in a number of books on outdoor and primitive survival, with the result that if you follow the loose instructions you may just end up with stiff, high-protien-cardboard.
Been there and done that.
After following Matt's method I ended up with soft buck skin the very first time with significantly less effort.
Matt's book covers the subject in very good detail, covering the bucking/wetscrape tanning method, theory of how brain tanning works, the tools necessary including primitive tools, and the basics on how to make garnments.
I think that if you are going to try brain tanning deerskin, this book is a must-have.
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