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Cleaning bloody wool pants

Old 10-29-2011, 12:08 PM
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Default Cleaning bloody wool pants

When field dressing my bull elk I kind of had to sit in the gut pile to reach up into the chest cavity to get all the junk out. My medium weight wool pants got soaked with blood and maybe other crud from inside the elk. The dry cleaning shop is having trouble getting the wool pants blood free. I bought these pants cheap -- $20 -- as army surplus, so one solution is just throw the pants away. I've got two other pair of the same. Another solution is to wear them with the blood stains in them. This last solution is not bad, so long as the remaining blood is not going to rot, decay, perhaps damage the wool pants. Not a real large problem in the vast scheme of things.

My question. This ought to have an easy answer. What is the best way to get heavy blood stains out of wool pants? I have always heard that wool is warm while wet. That implies to me that wool can get wet -- I could soak the wool pants in water and try to work the blood free before taking them to the cleaners. I know I wouldn't want to put these wet wool pants in a clothes dryer or dry them quickly, but why not slow drying after such a blood releasing water soak?

What do you suggest as an answer to my problem?
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Old 10-29-2011, 05:42 PM
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If throwing them away is an option, anyway, and you aren't real concerned about ruining them, my wife said wash them in baking soda with cold water. As they air dry, try to stretch them out from time to time, as they will shrink.
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Old 10-30-2011, 10:18 AM
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Originally Posted by Alsatian View Post
When field dressing my bull elk I kind of had to sit in the gut pile to reach up into the chest cavity to get all the junk out. My medium weight wool pants got soaked with blood and maybe other crud from inside the elk. The dry cleaning shop is having trouble getting the wool pants blood free. I bought these pants cheap -- $20 -- as army surplus, so one solution is just throw the pants away. I've got two other pair of the same. Another solution is to wear them with the blood stains in them. This last solution is not bad, so long as the remaining blood is not going to rot, decay, perhaps damage the wool pants. Not a real large problem in the vast scheme of things.

My question. This ought to have an easy answer. What is the best way to get heavy blood stains out of wool pants? I have always heard that wool is warm while wet. That implies to me that wool can get wet -- I could soak the wool pants in water and try to work the blood free before taking them to the cleaners. I know I wouldn't want to put these wet wool pants in a clothes dryer or dry them quickly, but why not slow drying after such a blood releasing water soak?

What do you suggest as an answer to my problem?
Get a big bottle of Hydrogen Perxide.
Pour it alll over the blood stain.
And wash them like you normaly would.
The Hydrogen Perxide on the blood stain will boil up, and break down the protein in the blood.
It works even on old blood stains.

Let us know how it turns out.

jrbsr
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Old 10-30-2011, 10:44 AM
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Originally Posted by jrbsr View Post
Get a big bottle of Hydrogen Perxide.
Pour it alll over the blood stain.
And wash them like you normaly would.
The Hydrogen Perxide on the blood stain will boil up, and break down the protein in the blood.
It works even on old blood stains.

Let us know how it turns out.

jrbsr
I don't wash wool clothing. Can your advice be adapted to just treating with hydrogen peroxide and then taking to the dry cleaners to finish the job?
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Old 10-30-2011, 04:05 PM
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Soaking them in cold salt water will get out most, if not all the blood.
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Old 10-30-2011, 05:10 PM
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Maybe I'm missin something.. Why in the world are you worried about stains?????? Are you trying to look good for the game you are hunting????? Who cares about stains and hunt!
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Old 10-30-2011, 05:50 PM
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Originally Posted by deer_predator View Post
Maybe I'm missin something.. Why in the world are you worried about stains?????? Are you trying to look good for the game you are hunting????? Who cares about stains and hunt!
True enough. I agree with you. But it is not apparent that what remains in these pants is just a stain. I think what remains has a crusty, stiff texture. If the matter -- blood, guts, whatever the hell I sat in while gutting my elk -- remains in the pants, it may well decompose and either damage the wool or just plain stink as bacteria attacks this residue. We're talking a big elk and a bucket of blood and guts. To get into the chest cavity to remove the lungs, I had to sit in that darn puddle of blood and guts shown in the picture. So . . . this is what I'm trying to get out of the wool pants. Not a few drops of blood. Also, you sort of have to deal with these creatures as they lie, without jockeying them around. These are big animals. That is probably a 500 LBS elk shown there.
Attached Thumbnails Cleaning bloody wool pants-img_2663.jpg  

Last edited by Alsatian; 10-30-2011 at 06:04 PM.
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Old 10-31-2011, 05:48 AM
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If your dry cleaner has already tried then most of the things listed won't have much better results. The blood, itself, is probably long gone but the stain has been set into the fabric. The remaining stain won't do any more harm to the material than the original dye.

I have several pairs of those surplus, OD Green, wool pants (some are 20+ years old). A couple of them have been stained, over the years, and when I see the stain I can, still remember where, how, and when it happened. Not quite as good as field notes or a hunting journal but still a plus.
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Old 10-31-2011, 07:59 AM
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Originally Posted by olfatguy View Post
If your dry cleaner has already tried then most of the things listed won't have much better results. The blood, itself, is probably long gone but the stain has been set into the fabric. The remaining stain won't do any more harm to the material than the original dye.

I have several pairs of those surplus, OD Green, wool pants (some are 20+ years old). A couple of them have been stained, over the years, and when I see the stain I can, still remember where, how, and when it happened. Not quite as good as field notes or a hunting journal but still a plus.
I'm okay with that. These are highly practical and utilitarian items.
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