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Thread: PLEASE DO NOT SALT your skin before putting in the FREEZER !!!!!

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    Sponsor protaxidermy's Avatar
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    Default PLEASE DO NOT SALT your skin before putting in the FREEZER !!!!!

    Just think about this for a moment, What does salt do to ICE ????

    It melts it.

    Thats why they use it on Highways & walk ways.

    SALT INHIBITS FREEZING.

    If you salt over the top of Fatty tissue & meat you can actually Spoil your skin WHILE its in the freezer.

    Freezing is meant to preserve the skin till someone can get to fleshing it.

    Salt is meant as a Drying agent that will lock the fur in place & tighten the poors in the skin so the upper epidermis ( Top part of the skin that holds hair in place) will stay in place.

    They DO NOT WORK together at the same time.

    If you are going to Have to salt a skin, Make sure to remove as much as possible of the meat & fat, Turn the ears inside out as far as possible, Split the lips as far as you can , & the center ( Septum) of the nose.

    Then you can salt the skin at this time & that will help keep yopu cape from slipping hair, If it has feet you will have to take ALL of the toe bones out & remove the cushion from inside the pads.

    When salting make sure to roll the salt around the entire cape paying attention to get around the entire ear bases & all of the skin. Push salt into each toe & the pads.

    Now leave the skin open in a dry place & let it dry over night , Then the next day move the salt around on the cape again. Let it dry for 2 more days, then shake all the salt off & hang the skin up to dry out so you can fold it up.


    Anouther pain in the Butt is Black Pepper, I had an Elk come in that the guy thought he was doing good by spreading 5 lbs of pepper on the cape.

    It about made me sick when I had to reflesh the cape.

    DO NOT USE PEPPER on your cape unless you are seasoning it to eat.


    I hope this helps. If not , call me & I will show you how to properly flesh & salt a skin.

    Just got in a bear that was near ruined due to the above & just needed to vent !!

    RJ Simington

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Never heard of anybody putting pepper on a cape......on meat yes, but a cape?.....that's really odd......

    Yeah, I don't understand why people don't see this about the salt and freeze thing. It's either one or the other......salt OR freeze, but not both.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Sponsor Hoytguy's Avatar
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    I just fleshed a huge brown bear the other day that had 40 pounds of gravel on the hide.. No pepper or salt though. Pretty much ruined every knife I used . .

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    Member Lone Wolf1's Avatar
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    X2 on what RJ said.

    Jesse, I feel your pain. I had one that had been dragged flesh side down across several sandbars. I spent as much time sharpening blades as I did actually fleshing :-(.

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    Sponsor protaxidermy's Avatar
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    Kind of funny to see how hunters treat their trophies before they bring them to the taxidermist , then they worry about how we are handling them. LOL

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    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    I would love to watch someone experienced flesh out a bear. I have one that I worked on last night for about 4 hours. I got the feet out, head out, skull cleaned up, ears turned, lips turned, nose cleaned up, and about 1/4 of the skin cleaned up (but definately not scraped/fleshed).

    I basically just got the shiny layer off of the hide on 1/4 of him. How far down do you "flesh"? Are you just scraping it with a knife or?

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    Sponsor Hoytguy's Avatar
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    I just took 27 bears to the tannery, if u knew ya wanted a class, I been at it day n night for about a month now.

    Still have all 3 of my kids bears and wife's in the freezer. When I get caught up I'll be knocking them out., black bears take about 2-3 hours to flesh, turn, split everything to include the skull and feet. Big browns are almost a all day job by themselves.

    Drop me a line I guess and we can go from their.

    Lots of other taxis out their that may be closer that would or can offer some helpfully advice, hands on stuff.

    Dahlbergs taxidermy.

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    Member 4merguide's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullelkklr View Post
    I would love to watch someone experienced flesh out a bear. I have one that I worked on last night for about 4 hours. I got the feet out, head out, skull cleaned up, ears turned, lips turned, nose cleaned up, and about 1/4 of the skin cleaned up (but definately not scraped/fleshed).

    I basically just got the shiny layer off of the hide on 1/4 of him. How far down do you "flesh"? Are you just scraping it with a knife or?
    I remember when I first arrived in AK and shot my first blackie. I worked on it for quite awhile and "thought" it looked good. I took it into the taxi and asked...."what do you think......has it been fleshed good enough?" The guy said "no.....here have a look" He then proceeded to to hang it on a fleshing board, take a ulu looking knife and just bear down on my beautiful skin!!! I had to darn near grab my breath as I thought he was gonna rip right through the thing. I noticed right away that I could actually see the hair follicles after he made a few passes. So it does have to be taken down quite a bit more than you would think.
    Sheep hunting...... the pain goes away, but the stupidity remains...!!!

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    Sponsor protaxidermy's Avatar
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    You DO NOT Scrape the skin either.

    You have to either use a Sharp knife or a sharp neckers blade.

    All bears are different, some have nice white thick fat that comes of really clean & some have thin Greasy fat that is a mess to clean off .

    Some skins are realy thick & some are paper thin .

    There is a certain finess to fleshing properly & comes with lots of practice.

    If you Scrape the skin you will cause heat in the skin & with loosen the upper epidermis & the skin will slip the fur.

    Unless you know how to do it, you would be better off to just leave the fleshing to your taxidermist.

    Most of us will show you how to do it at times in our shops, just have to make arrangements ahead of time because we do not flesh skins every day, & most of us get right after fleshing bears when they come in so we dont get behind.

    It is also a real greasy mess & takes a lot of time depending on how large the bear is.

    You do not want to do it in your wifes kitchen or your going to get your butt chewed DRASTICLY. LOL

    RJ Simington

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    Member lab man's Avatar
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    I don't shoot bears all that often, but I'll probably end up spending a whole day working on a big black bear. If I did it more often I'm sure I could speed things up a bit, but I enjoy just turning on the tv or radio and cracking open a six pack. I made the mistake of salting and then trying to freeze a hide once.. Oops! Live and learn. Luckily it was a small hide that was already damaged from being dropped off a cliff.

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    Protaxidermy: Excellent posts!

    Quote Originally Posted by protaxidermy View Post
    Kind of funny to see how hunters treat their trophies before they bring them to the taxidermist, then they worry about how we are handling them. LOL
    And the same thing goes for meat care (bear and other critters). And then it's somehow, the meat was horrible ... not that they waited to gut it or processed it with the same care (or lack thereof) they gave the hide.

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