I want to make a Dassie Kaross

Discussion in 'Hunting Africa' started by BRICKBURN, Oct 31, 2019.

  1. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    How many Dassie pelts does it take to make a Kaross for a queen sized bed?

    How hard would it be to collect enough hides?

    Know any good tanneries that can deal with these pelts.
     

  2. Red Leg

    Red Leg AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    And here I was wondering who Dassie was .......... (n)
     
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  3. Bullthrower338

    Bullthrower338 AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Hell, I thought he meant lassie pelts, I was gonna say about 8!
     
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  4. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    You guys scare me sometimes.
     

  5. Bullthrower338

    Bullthrower338 AH ENABLER AH Legend

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    Probably get a finished usable fur square not much bigger than 6”x6”, at that size you would need 133 rock rats to cover the bed 60”x80” so shoot an extra 50 for overhang and we have a grand total of 183 Hyrax needed. Sounds like a fun day of shooting! There is a great fur dresser in montana that might fit your needs, they are used to doing fragile pelts. I will try to find you a contact.

    7020B4A3-F214-40A4-B178-7DBDBC70E558.jpeg
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 1, 2019
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  6. fourfive8

    fourfive8 AH Fanatic

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    Bullthrower338 beat me to it :)

    I don't know what scares me more, the question or the answers.

    Sounds like someone has been reading Heat, Thirst & Ivory by Frederick Everett- excellent book by the way!

    He, as tutored by his friend and mentor Agatauwa, funded his first ivory "expeditions" by making karosses out of many of the available small critters, including dassies, to sell to touri visiting via train.

    A dassie is pretty small. So if you square the hide, trim to smooth rectangle, calculate so many square feet per dassie and divide that into your rectangular bed spread square footage... that should approximate the number needed. They aren't tough to hunt or shoot but getting that number may take some time. Then the tannery would have to be able to handle really thin hides- with minimal damage. Then getting someone to sew them all together... quite a process with lots of labor. I just don't know the average sq footage of a dassie. I was guessing somewhere around 80-100 dassies for a queen size spread - but who knows :)
     
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2019
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  7. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Ok, so I have to shoot big ones and plenty of them.
     
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  8. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    I can’t recall where I was first told about. Dassie Kaross but it’s been on my mind for years. Time to get on with the dance.
     
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  9. Ridgewalker

    Ridgewalker AH ENABLER LIFETIME BRONZE BENEFACTOR AH Legend

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    We will be watching and cheering you on!
     

  10. fourfive8

    fourfive8 AH Fanatic

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    Yes! :)
     

  11. K-man

    K-man AH Elite

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    Yep think prairie dog shoot for about 2 days with lots of picking them up, skinning and salting. Might need to do it European style with a gun loader, and someone to go pick them up. I actually thought about doing something similar with Wallaby in New Zealand. My guide looked at me like I was nuts. I picked up the first one or two just to look at then gave that up quickly. Shot 25 the first day, about 18 the second. I bet it would be very soft. Makes me think a little like 101 dalmations and Cruella DeVille.
     

  12. WAB

    WAB AH Elite

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    Hmmm, when I shoot prairie dogs they typically turn into a red mist, gonna take a lot of dogs...
     
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  13. KMG Hunting Safaris

    KMG Hunting Safaris AH ENABLER SPONSOR Since 2013 AH Legend

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    We spoke about it after I told you that I wanted to do one out of Jackal.
     
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  14. IvW

    IvW AH Legend

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    A Dassie skin is 10x6 inches and you need about 60 for a 4 foot x 6 foot Kaross. Double that and add some extras so 150 max should get it done.

    This close relative of the elephant has different sub species. When seasons change from winter to summer is not a good time to hunt them for the skin as they shed their winter coat and this can result in hair slip. The skin is very tough and strong.

    I cut my hunting teeth on these little fellows in the mountains of the eastern Freestate. They become very tame as pets and I had several tame ones as a kid.

    22 LR is perfect for these critters.

    Good luck and enjoy the hunting.
     

  15. Nkawu

    Nkawu AH Veteran

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    I’ve heard conflicting reports about the taste of dassie, as well as the cane rat- some say it’s a delicacy, others wouldn’t touch it. Did you ever cook yours up as a kid?
     

  16. IvW

    IvW AH Legend

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    Yes, I had to eat what I shot, one of the rules. Ours on the farm fed on trees shrubs and prickly pears. The have a different taste but it is quite good. The blacks I grew up with on the farm loved them, any meat for that matter. They gave me the Sotho name of "Thabo", the one who brings "Happiness" or "Joy" as I was always hunting and providing meat.

    I shot a lot from age 5 with a Mauser B type .22....good times....
     

  17. Nyati

    Nyati AH ENABLER AH Ambassador

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    Wayne, I read somewhere that some monkeys have very good pelts for making a kaross. That should make it easier for you :LOL:
     

  18. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    I'm getting forgetful.

    Doesn't have to be pretty.

    I've seen plenty of coats out of Coyote. But furriers want them to be perfectly colour matched. Thus, it takes a lot of hides.
     

  19. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    Vervet Monkey down the middle then.
     
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  20. BRICKBURN

    BRICKBURN AH ENABLER SUPER MODERATOR CONTRIBUTOR LIFETIME TITANIUM BENEFACTOR AH Ambassador

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    These critters are way bigger than any Gopher I have ever seen.

    Size
    50-55 cm long
    Weight
    3-4.5 kg, female slightly smaller than males


    My guess is you can get a usable pelt fifteen inches and ten inches wide (or 10 x 6 on the small side)

    After some WWW sleuthing, it appears that I will not have to collect quite so many. Given the following examples.

    5 feet by 6 feet was done with 48 pelts. (7.5 inch and 11.5 inch squares)
    Screen Shot 2019-11-04 at 06.22.45.png


    This was completed using 22 pelts. This historical piece used all sorts of sizes that were fit together, judging by the seams. (30 by 47 inches)

    Screen Shot 2019-11-04 at 06.31.03.png

    This historical version is the more likely target destination vs the machined squares of the modern rug.

    Found one tannery that can manage to tan the pelts properly. ie. they have done them before.
    Waiting on them to tell me what they might suggest for their folks doing the stitching.

    We will see how this goes.
     

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