For those who could get their hands on it, the self-published edition of 'Blue Mountain Buckskin' inspired generations of home tanners. This underground classic, the first real quality guide to brain tanning -- tens of thousands of copies sold -- is now being published and made widely available for the first time. 'Blue Mountain Buckskin' is a complete how-to guide to tanning buckskin at home, using the methods Native Americans and outdoorsmen have preferred for thousands of years. It also includes 40 pages on creating garments, pouches, moccasins and other traditional uses of the deer.
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Jim Riggs is a nationally reknowned teacher of tanning and other outdoor skills and has been for over 40 years. He has done a great deal of work for museums, tribes and the US government. He was also the skills advisor for the Clan of the Cave Bear books and movies. A trained archaelogist himself, he has spent most of his adult life teaching archaeologists, professors, movie directors, survivalists and anyone else how to tan hides, flintknap, craft a bow, make a basket, build a shelter, start a fire by friction and find wild foods. In the 80's and 90's, before survival tv shows; if you wanted to learn these skills, you had to seek out Jim --- which wasn't always easy --- and learn from this incredibly knowledgable, humble, and well-written man. Many of today's experts on a wide variety of outdoor skills got their start learning from Jim. He continues to wear buckskin and reside in a cabin in the mountains of eastern Oregon.Review:
Jim Riggs originally wrote this book in 1979, on a typewriter, and published it himself. And although he never sold it through the traditional book trade, he sold tens of thousands of copies. Why? Because it was the first book to really teach people in a detailed step-by-step manner, how to 'brain tan': the method used by Native Americans and American pioneers to make garment leather, and still the most practical way for you to successfully make really good leather in your own backyard.
Riggs made and wore his own buckskin daily for years before writing this book, so his instructions are both expert and very detailed about the nuances (and odd situations) that this craft can entail. His love of buckskin, sense of humor, and respect for the animals whose skins he is tanning shine through the pages.
You'll learn step-by-step through words, illustrations and photographs; how to skin, tan, and then make clothing from the hides of deer, elk or antelope. You'll learn the 'dry-scrape' method of brain tanning (there is also a wetscrape method), and you'll have a great time doing it!
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