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What is Mutton Tallow?

Discussion in 'Blackpowder' started by hildo, Apr 5, 2007.

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  1. hildo

    hildo Member

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    Because of translation problems (my native language is Dutch) I can not excactly determin what Mutton Tallow is... apart from a good ingedient for bullet lube pills.

    Is it the fat that is washed out of the sheeps hair after it gets a haircut?
    Or is it somewhere from the inside of a sheep, so you have to kill it first to get to it?
    If so, is it sold by regular butchers then?
    :confused:
     
  2. Kimber1911_06238

    Kimber1911_06238 Member

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    sheep fat....mutton is another word for the meat of a sheep. tallow = fat
     
  3. Jorg Nysgerrig

    Jorg Nysgerrig Member

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    Hildo, tallow is rendered fat. The fat is taken from inside the sheep and then is processed (purified) by melting it with water and straining it, then letting it cool.

    It is the same way they render fat into tallow to make soap. If you can find an article in dutch about soap-making using animal fat, it may help.
     
  4. Bad Flynch

    Bad Flynch Member

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    Hildo,

    Since you are Dutch, the various Dutch forms of the word that I could find for this substance are: talq, talch, talk. Some of those are surely archaic forms (Middle Dutch, etc.). This substance and related names for it occur in all of the Germanic languages.

    At any rate, this is the substance rendered from the fat of ruminating animals, e.g., cattle, oxen, sheep, deer, etc. The analagous product from a pig is lard.

    Hope that helps.
     
  5. BigG

    BigG Member

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    I would call it waxy fat rather than oily fat. I would think beeswax would be a good substitute for tallow.
     
  6. 4fingermick

    4fingermick Member

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    Mutton are older sheep. The treated fat-tallow was used in days gone by to apply to hemp to fill up threads in waterpipes, etc. Aussies also use it for treating harness. It is rubbed in and it sends the leather almost black and greasy. Looks and feels like $&it, but is waterproof and lasts longer. Smelly horrible stuff, gets everywhere, but works well.

    The oil from the wool is Lanolin.
     
  7. icy

    icy Member

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    Melting fat with water :confused: Can you explain this a little further.
    I got some pounds of sheep fat and I want to melten stuf as we making cracklings from pigs fat at home. I will cut fat to small pieces than cook them on very week fire for a few hours with constant mixing. Than I will separate cracklings from melted tallow and let the tallow cool down in glass jars.

    If there is a better way (with water) please help

    Anybody tried lard instead of mutton tallow? Is result the same? Pure lard is widely available for frying and cooking in Slovenia.


    Have a nice smoky day,

    Icy
     
  8. BigG

    BigG Member

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    I think lard is too oily for bullet lube. That's what you're doing with it, right?

    You want something more solid at room temperature. Lard will be running down killing your powder and primers. Bullet lube has to remain solid. Tallow is more like wax than fat at room temperature. It was used to make candles by dipping a string into a molten bucket of the stuff. When it hardens, it is waxy.
     
  9. Steve499

    Steve499 Member

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    Icy, melting fat in water doesn't change the end product but it does make it easier by allowing the heavier solids to sink to the bottom of the pan and the pure fat to rise to the surface. The cooled fat can be lifted off the water after has cooled and hardened. It is cleaner on the bottom that way than fat which has cooled without the water to separate it from the pieces of animal it came from.

    I believe any animal fat and/or any vegetable oil can be useful black powder lubricants, either used alone or mixed with beeswax, paraffin wax or probably a host of other ingredients. We all have our favorite mixtures. Some, like mutton fat, may possess properties which makes it more efficient in some way, but any animal fat, including lard, will work.

    Steve
     
  10. Duncaninfrance

    Duncaninfrance Member

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    Lard, unlike mutton tallow, will go rancid very quickly I am told.
     
  11. AntiqueCollector

    AntiqueCollector Member

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    I render beef tallow by simmering in water ground up suet or other solid fat (ground with a meat grinder) for several hours. Longer it cooks, the more you'll get, as long as it's covered and not boiling real hard. If it's put in a cool place overnight it'll harden up on top, with stuff you don't want floating around in the water underneath. If the separation wasn't perfect and there are bits of meat, it can be melted in a pot of water and then put in a cool place again, repeating until it's as clean as you want it. How hard the product comes out seems to depend on the time of year the animal was killed and what it was eating. Tallow from store bought fat is unpredictable when it comes to how hard it'll be.

    The water prevents it from catching fire. Even a low fire can possibly set the fat on fire if it overheats, which is especially easy to do with small batches.

    Lard and tallow do not go rancid if properly rendered. In fact, it was used a lot to preserve meat in, completely covering cooked/mostly cooked meat in the melted lard, bottom, top and sides.

    Lard seems to be more corrosive than other fats, it'll make unprotected metal rust rather badly.
     
  12. O.S.O.K.

    O.S.O.K. Member

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    I have lube that is made from 5 parts beeswax, 4 parts lard and 1 part olive oil and it works very well. It is hard at room temp and doesn't melt down until it gets pretty hot. I also add a little peppermint oil.

    I've had it for 4 years now and it hasn't changed a bit - certainly no rancidity at all.

    This is very similar to SPG bullet lube and works especially well on bullets.
     
  13. stevetexas

    stevetexas Member

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  14. icy

    icy Member

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    That's how my wife cook a beef soup.:) After soup is cooled she remove any tallow from the top (she care for me a lot after my heart-attack)

    Thanks to all,

    Icy
     
  15. hildo

    hildo Member

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    Right Icy. My mom used to do remove the white fat (tallow) that hardened on top after cooking meat soup as well for my father after he had a heart attack. He lived for many more years!

    Thanks to all for making tallow (sheep fat) and lanoline (oil from sheep wool) understandable. We can now all make tallow for bullet lube and even make soap and candles. That's good since I do not think pure mutton tallow is available on a commercial base here in Holland.
     
  16. Bad Flynch

    Bad Flynch Member

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    I literally know nothing about import regulations, but Dixie Gun Works (DGW) www.dixiegunworks.com has mutton tallow for sale. I have some stored in my refrigerator that I have been going to use for experiments.

    >That's good since I do not think pure mutton tallow is available on a commercial base here in Holland.<
     
  17. AntiqueCollector

    AntiqueCollector Member

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    You should be able to substitute beef tallow, if that's more readily available.
     
  18. Jim K

    Jim K Member

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    More modern, or more fastidious, shooters use Crisco, a vegetable compound.

    Jim
     
  19. unspellable

    unspellable Member

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    lube

    Any of these products will do well as a bullet lube. The practical difference lies in what they do BEFORE you pull the trigger. Will they stay where they belong or melt and make a mess?
     
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