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Author Topic: Deer Skinning  (Read 6262 times)

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Offline Norm

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Deer Skinning
« on: December 03, 2005, 11:20:18 AM »
First day of the gun season today, we've been cold and snowy. Patty took off for shopping and I hopped into the tractor to drive down by the creek line to hunt. We have 6"s of fresh snow, the real light and fluffy kind. Not as bad to walk in as the hard cold stuff but still work to walk in.

I walked along the creek real slow with the wind blowing into my face. The snow muffled all sounds and my scent was being blown away from me. I stopped often to watch for movement, the fresh snow hanging on all the trees and weeds made for some beautiful scenery. Not moving more than a hundred yards two does get up and trot off. Not really spooked but cautious enough to get moving before they were in range. Hoping that maybe a big boy was still tucked in where they came out of I walked slowly with my gun ready. Sure enough a yearling doe got up and trotted off, stopped and turned sideways from me at about fifty yards. I took aim and she dropped the instant hit.

While walking back to get the tractor I noticed four of the biggest bucks I've seen all year running out of a neighbors pasture heading for the creek. I crouched down and headed the same direction hoping to intercept them. As I got to the creek line I saw them cross on the ice and got a better look at them. Two were huge maybe 12 or 14 pointers, the other two where probably 8 or tens. I knew once they hit the other side of the bank they'd come my way following the woods between the creek and the plowed field on the other side. I eased down the bank and tested the ice sure it was solid as we'd had evenings around zero. I put my foot down and went through the ice into water up to my knee. With no other choice but to put my other foot down it went through also. I threw my gun up onto the bank and grabbed some weeds and pulled myself out. Soaked but still pumped from seeing such big deer I said the heck with it and stood on the bank waiting for the deer to show. A few minutes later they showed up moving through the thick brush on the other side. More out of frustration than anything I took a shot at the closest but missed miserably. They ran off heading to where the neighbors were hunting.

I got into the tractor and retrieved my little doe which when I picked him up found out was a yearling male. By the time I got back to the house my pants had frozen and my feet where numb. Changed clothes and shoes, went back out and thought I'd try skinning this one as someone on here had suggested. I always had hung them from their hind legs and pulled the hide off hanging from the front end loader. This time I hung him from his head, cut the hide around his neck and pulled it off from there. Worked real well! Now it's snowing so hard you can't see so I'm inside warming up hoping for a break in the weather.

Offline beenthere

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #1 on: December 03, 2005, 12:22:39 PM »
That sounds like an exciting morning.
I too found that skinning from the head down resulted in the hide coming off easier. I usually hang them head up, cut a ring around the neck to get the hide started, and then duct tape the hair at the top of the cut so it doesn't keep falling onto the fresh-skinned meat. When done skinning, I use the torch to singe any remaining hair before cutting the carcass up (front legs/shoulders, then the hind quarters together, and then the rib cage. So I work with just four 'parts'. 

I've been doing a bit of hunting, but not too heavy. I think we are about to get the snow you have been getting, so am going out to finish some firewood bucking before it gets too much.

Good luck with the rest of the hunt. What are the tag limits in Iowa now?
south central Wisconsin
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Offline FiremanEd

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #2 on: December 03, 2005, 04:22:42 PM »
Norm,

Here's a trick you can try when you get that big one that's not only iffecient but "cooll"

First, don't field dress them or put any more holes in the hide as possible. Take it back to the shop and hang it. Make a small incission, doesn't really matter where, and put the blower tip of your air hose in and blow him up. They'll get HUGE as the hide comes apart from the carcase. Then proceed to skin it as you described above and the hide will almost fall off.

Only catch is that you need to do this while they're still warm, which might be tough for ya'll up there.

Eddie
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Offline Buzz-sawyer

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #3 on: December 03, 2005, 05:16:12 PM »
Norm
Dont you think that is a little cocky driving your front loader to go deer hunting :D :D :D :D
I know from your past posts that getting one is more of a ritual than a challenge.they are so thick here...well, I had three within 5 feet of my front window.could of lasood it and led it to the stove if worst came to worse.. 8) 8) 8)
Heres hopping those neighbors werent tooo muchon the ball after they crossed em :)
    HEAR THAT BLADE SING!

Offline Norm

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #4 on: December 03, 2005, 05:33:39 PM »
Hey Buzz I'm getting too old to hike the miles in knee deep snow. :D

Snow quit just in time for the sun to go down. I saw tons more deer but not one buck. I always tell myself I'm hunting for meat not sport but when those bucks showed up those thoughts went right out the window and buck fever hit hard.

Beenthere I get 5 licenses, landowners get more tags than paid hunters do. I just did a beef and saved all the fatty trimmings so I'm going grind all but the loins 50% with the beef.

Eddie I've heard of that method but have never tried it. Right now the biggest problem would be to keep the air line to the compressor from freezing up. :D

Offline Modat22

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #5 on: December 03, 2005, 07:59:03 PM »
Norm,

Here's a trick you can try when you get that big one that's not only iffecient but "cooll"

First, don't field dress them or put any more holes in the hide as possible. Take it back to the shop and hang it. Make a small incission, doesn't really matter where, and put the blower tip of your air hose in and blow him up. They'll get HUGE as the hide comes apart from the carcase. Then proceed to skin it as you described above and the hide will almost fall off.

Only catch is that you need to do this while they're still warm, which might be tough for ya'll up there.

Eddie

that trick works on snapping turtles as well, chop off the head, clamp an air hose in the neck, cut the shell straps and fill er up with air. Peals the meat right away from the shell.
remember man that thy are dust.

Offline D Martin

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #6 on: December 07, 2005, 04:43:41 AM »
I have never done it this way but there's a video of this guy who starts the skinning procedure then puts a golf ball (or rock) inside the skin, ties a rope around the ball on the outside of the ball, (skin) ,ties to a bumper of a vehicle pulls it off like butter sliding of hot corn. Never done it but it looked easy on that video. The deer was not hanging it was laying down tied, so as not to pull it down the road. I just do mine the ol fashon way  take it to the deer cutting guy pay him 50 bucks and come get it a week or so later all packaged up.

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2005, 12:36:30 PM »
Tammy and I used to process deer and we skinned everything from the neck down inless they were to be caped out for a mount.  You can skin a deer from the neck down and almost be completly hair free depending on how clean the deer was field dressed.  Make a ring cut around the base of the skull. Make sure you are clear though the hide but not into the meat. You can take your hand now and easily brush off every loose hair generated by the cut before you continue. Now, from the inside out, beginning at the top of the field dress inciision continue that up, just inside the hide, until you reach you neck cut.  Brush any loose hair off now that was created by the cut. How you go to each knee and cut the hide in a ring around the leg. DO NOT SLICE UP THE LEG! Only slice around the hide. Now, you can remove each foreleg by simply cutting through the tendons, and giving the leg a twist to seperate the joint. Dont use a saw! A saw is never needed to cut up a deer. No hair, no bone dust.   Now you can start removing the skin from the top down.  Remove from the neck, working the hide down over the front shoulders. You can pull the hide off the from legs like a sock, DONT CUT UP THE LEG!  the leg hide will simply turn inside out as you remove it. once you have the hide down off the front shoulders and legs, you got the hardest part done. Just keep pulling the hide down and it will pull right off the back legs, and even off the tail. you may have to give a quick slice to disect the tail once the hide has rolled off of it.

To quarter DONT USE A SAW. The front shoulders easily seperate by lifting and slicing the connecting tissue up from underneath. at the top of the shoulder blades you cut and the shoulder is removed. A great way to cut the animal up. Cut the front shoulders off, process them, then move on to the rear hams. DONT USE A SAW! You can move the rear leg around to locate the hip joints. Make deep cuts around the back ham with the goal of ending up at the ball and socket hip joint. Once you have a cut all the way around ending at the joint, the whole back ham will simply come off when the joint falls apart.  Now, while the wife works on boning and cutting up the hams, you can cut out the backstraps and the inner loin. At the point we have the shoulders and hams all done we will make a cut deep around the neck at the base of the skull, all the way around. One of us will hold the head, while the other hugs the carcass (which we have slipped a garbage bag over. You hold the head still and turn the carcass sharply. The neck will break at the base of the head and you can take the carcass to where you are working and bone it out, removing any remaining meat.  Never a saw, never a hair.
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Offline etat

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2005, 12:50:33 PM »
Got that Bull of mine skined out and hanging up.  Actually did it the day before yesterday. 

Tell you one thing, blowing up that hide made it peel off a lot easier.  A couple of spots didn't get any air under it and those areas were tough.


Spilt em and hung em up and tomorrow I'm gonna cut em up and grind em up and get em in the freezers.

I agree with jeff about the deer but it took a sawzall to split that bulls backbone to seperate him.  I was wishing before I got through sawing I'd cleaned up my chainsaw and put vegetable oil in it to split em, but thinking then it'd a been a awful mess cleaning up the chainsaw so I didn't do it. 

I cut off a couple of big chunks of his hide and scraped em down and dropped them in the cold water in the edge of my pond until I can get them in some lime to take the hair off later.  I 'wanted' to do the whole hide in one piece but changed my mind when I actually figured out how heavy it was. 
Old Age and Treachery will outperform Youth and Inexperence. The thing is, getting older is starting to be painful.

Offline Texas Ranger

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2005, 12:57:17 PM »
Jeff, that is the Texas way, cept we hook it up to a 4-wheeler and pull the hide off.  Quick and easy.
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Offline etat

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2005, 01:12:56 PM »
Actually from about half way down I did use the winch on my four wheeler to help pull it.  Tied the back of my four wheeler to my tractor.  I didn't think a golf ball would be big enough so took a big chunk of steel and wadded it up underneath the hide and hooked my winch to it.  I'd pull a bit and cut a bit until i got it all stripped off.
Old Age and Treachery will outperform Youth and Inexperence. The thing is, getting older is starting to be painful.

Offline Modat22

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2005, 02:36:25 PM »
I agree with jeff about the deer but it took a sawzall to split that bulls backbone to seperate him.  I was wishing before I got through sawing I'd cleaned up my chainsaw and put vegetable oil in it to split em, but thinking then it'd a been a awful mess cleaning up the chainsaw so I didn't do it. 

But it feels so rewarding chopping a carcass apart with a chainsaw  ;)
remember man that thy are dust.

Online Jeff

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2005, 03:35:46 PM »
Jeff, that is the Texas way, cept we hook it up to a 4-wheeler and pull the hide off.  Quick and easy.

We skin as soon as possible. When they are warm, they slip right out however up here, if you wait over night and the meat is on the verge of freezing and you try to pull the hide, you can rip considerable amounts of meat off with it.
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Offline moosehunter

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2005, 05:01:01 PM »
 :D
The chainsaw. This story cracks me up. :D I get tears just thinking about it.
An old farmer here in town cuts his own beef up and always was complaining about hand sawing the length of the spine. One day someone says to him " buy a cheap electric chainsaw and put vegtable oil in it. He decides thats a great idea and buys one. The next time they are cutting he brings out the saw and hands it to his son for the cut. The old man walks around to the front of the cow to watch the cutting... up close. When the cut was done he steps back around the carcass exclaiming " that works great!!"
 He had a streak of bone/meat/blood and grizzle from his hat to his feet that had flown off the chain :D :D
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Offline etat

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2005, 08:22:17 PM »
Old Age and Treachery will outperform Youth and Inexperence. The thing is, getting older is starting to be painful.

Offline Norm

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #15 on: December 08, 2005, 07:45:20 AM »
Those are some impressive sides of meat CK, how much do you suppose old T-Bone weighed?

Offline Modat22

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remember man that thy are dust.

Offline etat

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #17 on: December 08, 2005, 10:12:06 AM »
Norm, i really really don't have a clue other than he was a great big un.  He was just less than four years old and as nice a bull as I ever had, other than the fence jumping factor. He could near about CLEAR a five foot fence flat footed and that's a fact.  The vet like to had a fit when I told em I wanted to make a steer outta him a few weeks ago.  He actually tried to talk me out of it and said it was the nicest and biggest bull he had ever worked on.  I pretty much got  the impresson he wanted to buy him right up until I told him what a fence jumper he was. 
Old Age and Treachery will outperform Youth and Inexperence. The thing is, getting older is starting to be painful.

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #18 on: December 08, 2005, 11:21:38 AM »
I think he's a nice looking bull right now.
remember man that thy are dust.

Offline Paul_H

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Re: Deer Skinning
« Reply #19 on: December 08, 2005, 12:12:08 PM »

 The old man walks around to the front of the cow to watch the cutting... up close. When the cut was done he steps back around the carcass exclaiming " that works great!!"
 He had a streak of bone/meat/blood and grizzle from his hat to his feet that had flown off the chain


 :D :D Thats perfect,I can totally imagine it  8)
eg  tregar  meste  på  Tulla, for  ho  var  krulla  i  ulla.


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