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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.

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Old 09-10-2004, 09:59 AM   #1
somebody shut me the fark up.

Bill-Chicago's Avatar
Join Date: 08-11-03
Location: Chicago Southwestern Burbs, but always south of Madison Ave.
Name/Nickname : Professor Dickweed
Default Butchering, Skinning, and Tanning

Here's something of a guide for fellow meat gatherers.



1) Veteran woodsmen tells us of certain labour saving
principles practised by Indians.


2) If you MUST transport the carcass first reduce the
weight by eating heart, liver, kidneys skull meat,
intestines and leg bone marrow.

3) ROLL; DON'T CARRY GAME DOWNHILL. On snow or ice use the
pelt of one animal as a sled to drag another.

Once scraped of fat and stretched between trees a hide can
be green-dried in a day. Spread under a sleeping bag = ideal


1) Lifting a large animal takes considerable effort. If on
your own you may have to skin and gut the animal on the

2) To prevent the carcass from rolling, cut off the feet
of hoofed animals and place them under it. **pix needed

3) Lay the carcass down a natural slope, scoop an
impression in the ground in which to place a collecting tin
or other vessel so that the animal bleeds into it.

4) Follow the same pattern of incisions in the hide then
skin the animal from one side to the backbone, spread out
the hide and then roll the animal on to it to finish
skinning the other half- this helps keeps the meat from
rubbing on the ground. **See more information on Skinning
below in Skin chapter.


Now if you can not transport your deer to your camp right
away, you MUST take some precautions such as to lay it on
its stomach on some pieces of wood, so as to raise it to
MAKE SURE that it is well ventilated to dry and cool off.

DON'T HANG IT UP, AND MAKE SURE you cover it very well with
many spruce branches held in place with bigger logs even
with a rope if need be.

Otherwise the scavengers will make it disappear in one day,
believe it or not 5 or 6 crows can clean a deer in one day.


THE WORST METHOD IS to tie its legs together and using a 12
foot pole between the legs you & your partner tries to carry
it. The continuous swinging motion of the deer will nearly
kill you.

1) THE TASK IS TWICE AS EASY if you use 2 poles to tie the
legs and you then carry the weight on your shoulders and to
avoid the swinging motion.

2) You just march on the same footstep rhythm or you can
use this different method which is to make a net under the
deer using a rope between the 2 poles in which you carry the
deer instead of tying it to the poles you tie it to the
stretcher by the neck.


1) If you are alone and can not get help from the above
nor Spock to beam it up, then first, don't try to drag it on
the floor unless the deer is very small, it will get tangled
up everywhere.

2) Don't try to obstinate yourself unless you are Hulk to
drag a 175 to 200 pound deer, you only risk the hearth

3) Move your camp to the kill is the logical choice if in
emergency even without it.


1) Try this trick which will cut the weight in half.
Search for 2 small tree about 15 feet long with a trunk
slightly bent, if not, cut 2 straight trees that you cut the
ends in #bevel# so that they slide better.

Place them about 20 inches apart and tie a rope at every
foot between them. Roll your deer on this stretcher stomach
upward and attach it firmly by the legs and the neck so that
it does not slide downward.

2) If your rope is long enough cut a piece which you will
attach to the handles so as to help you to support the
weight on your shoulder as some kind of harness.

You will then note that a man of average strength can by use
of this method carry a deer of 200 pound without heart
attack or total exhaustion.




1) Hundred of pounds of meat is lost because the amateurs
does not know how to carve the animal properly, or because
he has not opened and cleaned the animal as soon as killed.

Or using bayonet type of knife to open an animal thus
perforating the intestine and spoiling the meat to no avail.

BUTCHERING TIP 1: *pix 382

1) Too many hunters spoil the taste of the games by using
the same knife to remove the #glands# located on the deer
legs and to skin the deer itself. Correct this error by
using a small knife really sharp to extract the gland.


Deer or Moose meat spoils very fast if left on the ground.

1) So if you can not hang the deer on a tree, drag the
body to a dead trunk & put it on it or upon a tree stump or
a group of shrubs would do it.

If too heavy push branches under the body & use a branch or
pole as leverage. It does not matter that the hind legs drag
on the ground.

2) A good hunter does it in 5 minutes and by dirtying only
one hand but if it is your first butchering, it will take
1/2 hour and you'll be a mess.

3) Start first by placing the deer in proper position
which is down toward a small slope which will help the
cleaning up.

4) Using a rope you will spread open the hind legs by
tying them to a small tree near by. Thus installed the deer
offers you its abdomen and rib cage.

5) It is the abdomen that MUST be emptied of its content
if you want to avoid spoiling the meat. You start by the
removing of the genital organs of the male.

6) To empty a deer, you open the deer from the #sternum#
to the tail base, from the sternum precisely where the bony
part of the rib cage ends.

7) When the opening is big enough to insert the index and
the major finger of your left hand, these fingers will push
downward while lifting strongly the skin upward.

Meanwhile the sharp knife turned upward will be
introduced between your fingers and will work downward all
the way to the #anus# MAKING SURE NOT TO PERFORATE THE

9) You will gradually open the hole about 10 inches on
each side. You will then notice that the #viscera# enveloped
in a transparent pouch have a tendency to come out of the
open stomach.

10) You MUST MAKE SURE not to perforate this envelope and
to work in such a way as to let the stomach and the
intestines be removed in one block.

11) Otherwise the guts will come off the pouch and will
make your task much more difficult & messy.

12) You MUST disengage all the pouch (diaphragm) so as to
let it easily come out of the abdomen.

13) In order to help you along, you introduce you open hand
between the skin and the pouch and direct it along the back
bone. Then you cut off the #oesophagi#.

14) It is a gut of about 1 1/2 inch in diameter located at
the top end of the stomach & connected to the #pharynx#.

15) Once this done you grab with your left hand the end of
the #oesophagi# connected to the stomach and you pull firmly
downward. The pouch containing the intestines and guts
should come out fairly easily.

16) If the deer is heavy, you can turn it sideways to help
the clearing of the #viscera#. Once they are completely out
of the deer you then cut the #big intestine# as closely as
possible from the #anus#.

Clean all blood and dry it, using dry grass, moss. Now all
you have to do is to detach the liver which has stayed stuck
behind the stomach.


Once at camp with your deer REMEMBER that is preferable to
let it age a bit before butchering it; about 8 to 10 days,
the meat will be much more tender. Of course we assume that
you have emptied the deer in the first place.


1) Once at camp you finish the butchering job by opening
the rib cage to remove the hearth and tongue.

2) Removing the deer of any further scrap and then you
hang it up to a bar located between 2 trees at about 12 feet
high, either by the head or hind legs through which you have
passed a pole at the #tendons d"Achilles#.

But don't forget to cover it up so as to avoid scavengers
etc. Use a tarpaulin to protect it from snow or rain as

3) You finish the opening with the knife then use the axe
to open the thorax by cutting the sternum all the way to the

4) To remove the lungs and the heart; cut the jugular vein
which is a tube about 1 inch in diameter, once cut; insert
your fingers and pull downward and all the breathing system
will come out of the thorax.

5) Clean the inside of the deer of the remaining parts of
the lungs, other pouches and of all blood.

6) As for the heart, it will be bled by simply compressing
it strongly. Finally remove the #metatarsiennes glands#
located at the bottom of the #tendons d'Achille# which you
use to rub your boots as # 1 waterproofing.


Whatever is not used either hearth liver, lungs etc. of all
game MUST NEVER be left in the wood but burned since they
will give many diseases to other games, so MAKE SURE to get
rid off them.


1) There are lymph glands in the cheeks of all animals
more noticeable on large ones. If large and discoloured they
are signs of illness.

Any animal that is distorted or discoloured about the head
such as rabbit with the symptoms of myxomatosis MUST BE

2) There is then little risk of infection from eating it.
But care should be taken in preparation when there is a

3) It is ESSENTIAL that any cut or sore in your skin be
covered when slaughtering or handling meat.

4) For if an animal carries disease a break in the skin
provides easy entry to your beautiful body!


1) No part of a carcass should be wasted. Careful
preparation will give you the maximum food value and make
full use of the parts you can not eat. Set about it in four

SKINNING:***See below Skin chapter

1) So that the hide or fur can be for shelter or clothing.

Pigs are not skinned because they have a useful layer of fat
under the skin. Birds are plucked but not usually skinned.


To remove the gut and recover the offal.


To produce suitable cuts for cooking by various methods


1) Which is ESSENTIAL if the meat is to keep & without
which the taste is very strong.

2) DO NOT WASTE BLOOD. It is rich in vitamins and minerals
including salt, that could otherwise be missing from the
survivor's diet. Cattle food is an important part of the
diet of many African herdsmen.

3) Cannibals who drank their enemies' blood found vision
and general health improved and giddy spells, induced by
vitamin deficiency, cured.

4) The blood provided the missing vitamins and minerals.
But today with aids they would drink death & beside the
Bible forbids us to drink blood.


1) Tie ropes around the hock (Not the ankle, it will slip
off) & hoist it up to a branch or build a frame, placing a
receptacle beneath to catch the blood.

2) For a frame you need a strong structure. Drive the
posts into the ground and lash them firmly where they cross
to make A frame and then rest the horizontal bar on top.

3) Bleed the animal by cutting the jugular vein or carotid
artery in its neck. When the animal is hanging these will
bulge more clearly & should be easy to see.

The cut can be made either behind the ears, stabbing in line
with the ears to pierce the vein on both sides of the head
at the same time or lower down in the V of the neck, before
the artery branches.

Unless you have a stiletto type knife the latter is best. An
alternative is to cut the throat from ear to ear.

4) This has the disadvantage to cut through the windpipe
and food from the stomach may come up & contaminate the
blood which you are trying to save, but if your knife does
not have a sharp point it may be necessary. It is
particularly important to very thoroughly bleed pigs.

5) If blood remains in their tissues, which have a high
moisture and fat content, it will speed deterioration of the


1) With the carcass still suspended remove the gut and
recover the offal. Pinch the abdomen as high as possible and
in the pouch of flesh you have raised make a slit big enough
to take two fingers.

2) Do not stab into the flesh or you may cut through to
internal organs. Insert the fingers and use them as a guide
for the knife to cut upwards towards the anus.

3) Now cut downwards in the same way, using the hand to
hold back the gut, which will begin to spill outwards . Cut
down as far as the breastbone. The initial incision, made in
the pinched-up flesh, needs only accommodate two fingers.

4) Cut in the same way as skinning see PIX #?* before *
First up, then down. The back of the hand prevents the gut
from spilling.

5) Let the gut spill out, allow it to hang down so that
you can inspect it. Remove the 2 kidneys and the liver.

6) The chest cavity is covered with a membrane and easily
missed in small game. Cut through the membrane and remove
the heart, lungs and windpipe.

7) Ensure that the anus is clear you should be able to see
daylight through it. Push a hand through with large animals.
The carcass is now clean & you are a bloody mess.


1) Large animals can be quartered by first splitting down
the backbone and then cutting each side between the tenth
and eleventh rib.

The hindquarters will contain steaks rump & filet and the
choicer cuts, the forequarter meat is more stringy and needs
slow cooking to make it tender

2) The cuts into which a carcass is divided will differ
according to the kind of animal and the cook's preference.

1) Fillet or undercut:The most tender meat only 1% is
fillet. Ideal for preserving.

2) Sirloin: Next most tender. Fat free strips can be cut
for preserving.

3) Rump: Ideal for frying, little cooking is needed. Can
also be dried in strips.

4) Topside: Muscle from the top of the leg. Cook slowly, it
tends to be tough. Cut into cube for boiling.

5) Top rump: Muscle from front of thigh. As for topside.

6) Silverside: Muscle on the outside of thighs. Good

7) Hind flank: Belly, ideal for stews & casseroles.

Leg: Tough and sinewy cut into cubes and stew.

9) Flank: Muscular extension of the belly. Ideal for stews
Usually tough so needs long simmering to make tender.

10) Brisket: Same as Flank.

11) Shin: Foreleg, best cubed for stews.

12) Neck: Stews.

13) Clod: Ideal for stews. Contains less tissue than leg.
Cook slowly.

14) Chuck and blade: Quite tender but usually cut up as
stewing steak.

15) 8 ribs: Ideal for roasting but cook slowly.


1) Offal should be eaten as soon as possible but the rest
of the meat is better hung.

2) In moderate temperature leave the carcass hanging for 2-
3 days. In hot climate it is better to preserve it by
cooking it straight away.

3) When the animal is killed, acids released into the
muscles help to break down their fibre, making the meat more


4) You MUST keep flies off the flesh; if they lay eggs on
meat it will spoil quickly.


1) Liver is best eaten as soon as possible. Remove the
bile bladder in the centre.

2) It is quite strong and can usually be pulled off
without difficulty- but be careful, the bile will taint the
flesh with which it comes in contact.

3) If any animal has any disease they will show up in the

4) AVOID any liver that is mottled or covered with white
spots. If only some is affected, cut it off and eat the


If eaten raw no food value is lost. It requires little


1) Stomach takes little digesting, so is a good food for
the sick or injured. Remove the stomach contents which make
ideal "invalid" food.

2) Wash the tripe and simmer slowly with herbs. The
contents may sound unpalatable but could save an injured
person's life for the animal has done most of the hard work
of breaking the food down.

3) Lightly boiled, stomach contents are nourishing and
easily digestible. In some countries pigs are fed nothing
but apple prior to slaughter.

4) They are cooked with the stomach still in. The subtle
flavour of apple impregnates the meat. The stomach is
removed after cooking and the contents used as sauce.


They are a valuable source of nourishment & ideal flavouring
for stews. Boil them with herbs.

The white fat surrounding them (suet) is a rich food source.
Render it down to use in the preparation of pemmican.


They are the spleen, a large organ in the bigger animals. It
has limited food value and is not worth bothering about in
the small games such as rabbits. It is best roasted.


Lites are the lungs of the animal, perfectly good to eat but
not of great food value. Any respiratory complaints will
show up in the lungs.

Do not eat any mottled with black and white spots. Healthy
lungs are pink and blemish free and best boiled. They could
be set aside for fish or trap bait.


A tightly packed muscle with little or no fat. Roast it or
use its distinctive flavour to liven up the stew.


1) They consist of lengths of tubes and are best used as
sausage skins. Turn them inside out and wash them. Then boil
them thoroughly.

2) Mix fat and meat in equal proportions and then stir in
blood. Stuff the mixture into the skin and boil them well.

3) Before putting them into boiling water add a little
cold to take it just off the boil, this will counter any
risk of the skins bursting.

4) This makes a highly nutritious food which if smoked
will keep for a long time. Dried intestines can be used for
light lashings.


Are the pancreas or thymus gland, distinctive in larger
game. Many people consider it a great delicacy and it is
delicious boiled or roasted.


Skin and boil to make an excellent soup for it is full of
meat and gelatine.


Feet are chopped off during slaughter but should not be
wasted. Boil them up to make a good stew.

Clean dirt from hooves or paws and remove all traces of fur.
Hooves are a source of nutritious aspic jelly.


1) On larger animal there is a good deal of meat on the
head. The cheeks make a very tasty dish. The tongue is
highly nutritious.

2) Boil it to make it tender and skin before eating. The
brain will brawn and will also provide useful solution for
curing hides. All that is left or the whole head with small
animals should be boiled.


All bones should be boiled for soup. They are rich in bone
marrow with valuable vitamins. They can also be made into


Follow the instructions for larger animals and then:

1) Split in two down the line of the spine, keeping
exactly to the centre of the backbone.

2) Remove rear leg. Try to cut through the ball and socket

3) Remove the front leg. There is no bone to cut through.
Follow the line of the shoulder blade.

4) Cut of neck
5) Cut off skirt (loose flesh hanging below the ribs.)

6) Cut between each rib and between the vertebrae. This
gives you chops.

7) The fillet, lying in the small back, is the best meat
for preserving.


1) Do not attempt to skin a pig. Gut it first then place
it over the hot embers of a fire and scrape the hair off.

2) Hot water will help loosen the hair. It should be only
just hotter than your hand can bear.

3) Water that is too hot will make the hair more difficult
to remove. Pigs attract many parasites: ticks, crab lives
and worms so cooking MUST MAKE SURE of killing them. Boiling
is therefore the best way of cooking pork.


Follow the basic procedures as for larger animals they all
need to be gutted.


1) Discard internal organs which may carry salmonella.
Reptiles can be cooked in their skins. Large snake can be
chopped into steaks and provide useful skins.

2) To prepare a snake, cut off head well down, behind
poison sacs, open vent to neck, keeping blade outwards to
avoid piercing innards which will fall clear. Skewer to
suspend and ease of skin towards tail.


Birds are prepared in much the same way as animals. Though
they are usually plucked and cooked with the skin on instead
of being skinned. Follow the sequence below.


Kill birds by stretching their necks, then cut the throat
and hang head-down to bleed.

Or kill by cutting just under the tongue severing main nerve
and main artery. The bird dies easily and bleeds well.


Handle carrion eaters as little as possible they are more
prone to infection, lice and ticks.


It is easiest straight after the killing while the bird is
still warm. Hot water can be used to loosen feathers except
in the case of water-birds and seabirds in which it tends to
tighten them.

Keep feathers for arrow flights and insulation. Start at the
chest. For speed you can skin a bird but that wastes the
food value of the skin.


Make an incision from the vent to the tail. Put your hand in
& draw out all the innards. Retain the heart and kidneys.
Cut off the head and feet.


1) Here is a trick to help you get rid of all little hair
of down that somehow ALWAYS remain after skinning your
rabbit, squirrel or partridge.

2) Take some scotch tape and roll in outward around you
hand so that the sticky part is on the outside then by
manipulating this hand duster carefully you will easily get
rid of all the undesirable down and furs.


1) Tularaemia this sickness is caused by a germ and it
appeared in 1968. Men can contact it from sick rabbits by
direct contact with his hands or by breathing the dust from
infected wounds, or by tick stings or by eating the meat not
well cooked.

2) So it is recommended to wet the rabbit before skinning
it, so as to avoid the dust and to prevent stings from tick
by the use of rubber gloves and to MAKE SURE it is properly
cooked. If the rabbit presents abscess or running lesions do
not eat it but destroy.


1) The only good way to keep the skin once its has been
cleaned off all its fat and blood and well washed it is to
let it dry in fresh air.

2) When they are dry after 2 or 3 days they can be taken
of their board to which they were nailed to stop the
shrinking then they are kept in a fresh room till ready to use.


1) Cool off the body as soon as possible and hang it by
the head.

2) Using a stick hold open the body so that the air can
freely circulate, spread also the hind leg so that the air
can freely circulate around.

3) REMEMBER to hang the deer by the head then cut the skin
around the neck near the head.

Then cut the skin lengthwise under the neck down to the
abdominal cavity. Next you carve the inside of the legs in
such a way that the 2 sides meet together.

Start at the top. Use your knife as little as possible. One
can remove or peel of the skin in big chunk size by just
pressing his fist between the flesh & the skin.

4) Keep on going toward the bottom till you get to the
hind legs. This method will give a clean job leaving hardly
any hair on the skin.


1) It is easier to skin any animal when the flesh is still
warm, as soon as it has been bled. First remove any scent
glands that might taint the meat.

2) Some deer have them on their rear legs, just behind the
knee. Felines and canines have a gland on either side of the

3) It is wise to remove the testicles of male animals as
they can also taint meat.


Cut firmly through the skin.

1) Make a ring cut around the rear legs just above the
knee. Take care not to cut the securing rope.

2) Cut around the forelegs in the same place.

3) Cut down inside of the rear legs to the crotch,
carefully cutting a circle around the genitals.

4) Extend the cut down the centre of the body to the neck.
Do not cut into the stomach and digestive organs:

5) Lift skin and insert two fingers beneath, set knife
between, sharp edge outward and draw it slowly down, cutting
away from the body.

6) Cut down the inside of the forelegs. Cutting in this
way, you avoid cutting prematurely into the gut cavity.

7) The fingers lift the skin as you go and the knife,
sharp edge outwards, slips in and cuts along.

DON'T HURRY! Don't cut yourself. Don't damage the skin.

9) Taking care will pay dividends later when you want to
use the skin. Now ease the skin of the rear legs, cut around
the tail (you have already cut around the genital area.)

10) As soon as you can get your hand right down the back
of the carcass use your fingers to separate flesh from skin.

11) Now peel the skin from the front legs. You will have a
single piece of hide.

12) As you work your thumbs down the neck they become
bloody at the point where the throat was cut. A strong twist
of the head will separate it. Cut through remaining tissues.


1) As soon as the game is killed you hang it to a desired
height by the hind leg and make an incision with a sharp
knife at knee height.

2) Then draw a straight line to the #anus# but don't press
to hard so as not to open the animal right away.

3) You will slide the blade between the skin and the flesh
while pulling fairly strongly with one hand with the help of
your knife to cut the flesh that stick too much to the body,
using your closed fist between the flesh and the skin is a
good way to proceed.

4) You keep this line right down to the upper part of the
ear MAKING SURE that you don't do any jerking movement.

5) Remove the excess fat and end by a cut on each ear,
then pull the skin down to the nose which you cut then
remove the skin completely.

6) As soon as the skin is removed, you will make a cut on
the stomach up to the neck as to empty it completely from
its intestine and of all the lower part.

7) Wash it with fresh water then cut the meat to preserve
it as the food chapter tells you to.

As for the skin remove all excess fat and cover it with
salt or #alum# powder or oak bark powder, then roll it and
keep it in a cool place, not damp till the time for tanning
24 hours later.


1) Lifting a large animal takes considerable effort. If on
your own you may have to skin and gut the animal on the

2) To prevent the carcass from rolling, cut off the feet
of hoofed animals and place them under it.

3) Lay the carcass down a natural slope, scoop an
impression in the ground in which to place a collecting tin
or other vessel so that the animal bleeds into it.

4) Follow the same pattern of incisions in the hide then
skin the animal from one side to the backbone, spread out
the hide and then roll the animal on to it to finish
skinning the other half- this helps keeps the meat from
rubbing on the ground.


1) Rabbits and smaller animals can be skinned by making a
small incision over the stomach (be careful not to cut into
the organs) Insert the thumbs and pull outwards- the skin
comes away easily.

2) Free the legs and twist the head off. If you have no
knife available to make the first incision snap off the
lower part of a leg and use the shard edge of the break to
cut the skin.


1) This operation MUST be done with precision if one wants
to keep the fur and requires much experience so practice on
rabbits but you MUST MAKE SURE that there is no blood on the fur.

2) So in order to do avoid this don't hit the rabbit on
the head since the blood would accumulate at this spot.

3) Your best way is to hang the rabbit with its head down
& hit it on the nose which will cause an haemorrhage death.

4) Skin it right away while you hang it by the back legs
on hooks at 30cm distance.

The best tool is a skinning knife but if you don't have one
then use a straight one but MAKE SURE it is real sharp and
keep the sharpening stone near by since its blade becomes
dull quickly in the skinning process.

5) After you have made the incisions (cuts) the way shown
you then start to pull off the skin till you feel a
resistance which is caused by the #membranes# or tissues
which then MUST be cut off as you go along.

6) Keep on pulling & cutting along but hold firm on the
rabbit. Animals are skinned most of the time all the same
way and the skin of the head and of the legs is usually not
removed but a cut is made around them and the rest of the
skin is removed.

7) In order to do the first cut (incision) you start at
the sternum and go down along one of the front leg. The
second cut will go along the other leg.

The third cut will go from the hind leg to rejoin the
other leg and the last cut will go into the middle. With a
rabbit the skin comes off with one pull using only the
occasional additional cut.

9) However on most other animal the skin only comes off
bit by bit as if it was a sheath which was too narrow.

10) You MUST then pull it off gently and when it resists
call the army by using your knife well sharpened. Go easy so
as not to pierce the skin.

11) The last operation is to cut the skin around the neck
and around the legs.

12) Once you have removed the skin you can remove most of
the excessive flesh but using the back of your knife, the
rest of the flesh will come off when you do the skinning

13) The next operation is the skinning which is to remove
all the rest of the fat or flesh that has clung to the skin
or leather.

14) In order to remove these pieces of meat easily dip the
skin in a solution of #borax# or salt.

15) You prepare this solution by dissolving 500 grams of
ordinary salt into 8 litres of water. If you use #Borax#
then use 30 gram of #Borax# for 4 litre of hot water and let
it cool off before dipping the skin into it.

16) The use of a shaker similar to the old washing machine
would speed things up and would also diminish the falling of

17) It is recommended before you dip the skins to stretch
them on a wooden rack while they are still fresh.

1 In order that the flesh is removed easily let the skin
soak in the solution above during one night.

19) (In some cases you may have to let the skin soak a few
days, but experience will tell.)

20) In the morning wash the skin off with clear soft water
and let it dry off. When it is still a bit damp you rub it
with salt while avoiding that the salt comes into contact
with the fur. As soon as the salt has been absorbed make a
second one.

21) Fold the skin lengthwise the fur on the outside and
roll it and let it lay down slightly inclined so that the
excess of water comes out.

22) The removal of the flesh will be done the day after.
For this you place the skin with its fur under and place it
over a round piece of wood and scrub or scratch the flesh
off from the skin.

23) Normally one uses a special knife for this but a
butcher knife would do fine as well to remove all remaining
pieces of flesh or #cartilage#.

24) For a rabbit the round wood is a piece about 1.20 meter
long and 20cm in diameter which has been split in half
lengthwise so as to present a flat & round surface

25) MAKE SURE that the bark is off the wood as well. Hard
wood is much better than spruce since spruce type usually
stays sticky.

26) Make also sure that its surface is well smooth and does
not have knots or bumps.

27) The skin is #racler# with care and uniformly on all its
surface. In order that the skin tanning is well done then
the #membrane# that covers the inside face MUST be
eliminated completely.

2 From time to time you scrape the skin with the back of
the knife in order to soften it.

29) As soon as the operation is finished, you wash it in a
soapy water and rinse it carefully but quickly then you dry
it by hanging it on a stretcher.


A) This method was invented to make skinning as quickly
and as simply as possible.

B) NO KNIFE is required to remove the skin. One uses only
his hands to turn the skin upside down.

1) With the thumb and index, pull on the skin at the point
of junction of the hind legs pushing or inserting your index
between the thigh & the skin, then using your finger as a
hook pull downward & rip the skin down to the groin.

2) Once you have cleaned #degager# the 2 thighs, grab the
skin with both hands and pull downwards.

3) Once most of the animal body is cleaned * #degager#
remove the tail and skin which have remained between the

4) Now pull the skin downward again while using your
finger by inserting it between the skin and the flesh in
order to facilitate the clearing of the shoulders.

5) Once they are completely cleared* #degager# pull on the
skin of the legs which will cut itself off easily.

6) Before going any further, you MUST remove the shoulders
from the body carcass so as to avoid getting them soiled
with viscera, blood and ****.

7) Now remove the intestines #viscera. # It is recommended
to make the first cut a bit on the side of the stomach
rather than dead on centre, so as to avoid any perforation
to the #viscera.#

Completely remove the stomach muscles by cutting along
the "filet" up to the first ribs.

9) You also MUST break the pelvic bone with at the thigh
junction in order to facilitate the cleaning operation.

10) #Degager the "filets"# by cutting along the back bone
starting at the first ribs up to the neck. Proceed the same
way by sliding your knife between the ribs & #"filets".#

11) Now that your #filets# have been removed from the
thorax cage, it is not necessary to remove them completely,
they will do so on their own with the next step.

12) With the knife point break the vertebras at the level
of the first ribs then fold the back bone backward.

13) The body will break in two, the thorax cage containing
the #viscera#, the head & the skin will come together in one

14) You will recuperate all the rabbit meat but for the
small muscles holding the sides.


1) The small side bones which are often a real nuisance in
a meal will not be there at all.

2) You avoid to touch or manipulate the #viscera#.

3) You don't cut the head thus avoid bloody mess.

4) Real time saving for the whole operation.


The Indians do it this way; they attach one hind leg to a
tree then they make a cut from the #anus# inside the thighs
down to the heels.

Then they cut the skin around the leg and they would pull
off the skin like a glove using the knife to cut the root of
the ears, around the eyes, mouth and nose.

In winter if the snowshoes hurt your feet, skin a couple
rabbit and put their skin directly under your feet then put
your socks over them.

This skin to skin contact gives you an impression of walking
over jelly but it removes the pain of blisters.


Make cleaning and drying the skin easier by stretching it on
a frame. Do not make the holes for the cords too close to
the edge.

Remove the fat & flesh by scraping the skin, using an edge
of bone, flint or other rock or even wood.

Take care not to cut the skin. Remove every trace of flesh.
Ants and other insects may help you if you lay the skin on
the ground. Keep watch that they do not start to consume the
skin itself.


Stretch the skin as tight as possible and leave it in the
sun to dry out. All the moisture MUST be drawn from it so
that it will not rot.

Rubbing salt or wood ash into the skin will aid the process.
Do not let the skin get wet or even damp, until the process
is complete.

Do not leave it where it will be exposed to rain or risk a
covering with morning dew. Keep it absolutely dry.

If little or no sun is available, force dry it over a fire,
but keep the skin out of the flames and use only the heat
and the smoke which will aid preservation. Keep it away from
the steam from any cooking pots.


1) Skin the animal as soon as dead or as possible.

2) Rake the flesh side of the skin, remove all impurities
such as blood, grease, nerves etc. Be careful for blood
spots. Put the skin in clear water for a few hours to help it.

3) Place in a tanning solution a: 4 lb of salt + 2 lb of #
alum# and 3 gallons of water well-mixed cold not warm nor
hot. B: 1 gal of water + 1 oz of commercial sulphuric acid +
1 lb of salt.

4) Soften up the skin from time to time & MAKE SURE that
it stays completely under water, if need be use a rock to

5) After 24 hours remove the skin, let it drip off on a
rope with the skin flesh side outward.

6) Repeat over again the number 4,5,6

Take the skin off for good, rinse it and wash it in water
containing 1/2 cup of soda a laver# rub, #chiffonner# twist
it dry as best as you can.

7) Let it dry in the air but NOT in the sun for 24 hours.

Stick it to a board, stretch it and nail it down using small
nails to help you in this chore and the hair side under.

When the skin is dry, rub it, #chiffoner#, and make it white
using talc powder. The best skin season runs from October to


After having rolled them with salt inside in contact with
the fatty part you wait 24 hours before soaking them in a
tanning bath.

After this period you put them for 24 hours in cold water
then you stretch them on a board, the fur inside and the
naked parts open toward free air.

Then you will scrape with a knife all the fat and grease so
as to make the skin as clean as possible.

Then prepare a tanning solution made like so: 1 pound #alum#
and 1 pound of coarse salt in 1 gallon of warm water. You
soak the skins for 48 hours.

Several times during this time you will stir the whole thing
up. At the end of 48 hours you will tend stretch them again
on the boards, stretch them as much as possible and let them
dry partially in a shadowy place NEVER in direct sunlight.

When the skins are 1/2 dry, you MUST stretch them once more
so as to maintain the maximum pliancy and to prevent the
leather to harden.

You then put them back in a new batch of solution as
described above.

You then draw them out to make them dry completely as shown
before on boards, (fur on the board) then before all the oil
runs out of the skin, powder them with wood's ashes mixed
with saw dust well dry.

When the skins are impregnated of these substances you
spread a thick sheet of paper between each skin and you roll
them together before putting them under a weight of some

After a while you beat them with a small stick, once this
done you comb the skin in #sens du poil# till they get back
to normal shape.


There are as many procedures of tanning as there are tanners
and each one thinks he has the best one. So here is one of
them. The advantage is that it does not require the uses of
DANGEROUS chemical giving toxic vapours.

However the uses of rubber gloves are strongly recommended
since the products attack your skin.

Use a big container either of wood, glass or plastic but not
of metal since the chemical ingredients would attack the

Next you dissolve 2.5 kg of salt into 40 litres of water
which you remove from the water as soon as it starts to

MAKE SURE that your water is not alkaloid (hard water) the
use of rain water is best.

Next you dissolve 1 kg of #alum# in boiling water and pour
this solution into the first solution while mixing it with a
stick, not with your hand. The solution thus obtained will
be used either cold or hot.

Dip the skin into this solution delicately with a stick
twice a day. In order that the skin is totally tanned MAKE
SURE that the solution gets well into the folds of the skin.

The bigger the skin the longer the tanning time. A rabbit
skin would require 2 days and a sheep 5 to 6 days. A
dinosaur? = 1 year or 2?

Tanning permits a skin which if it was not treated would rot
quickly. It transforms a skin into a nice fur or leather

In the old days the tanning was done while using tannic acid
from diverse plants or trees nowadays most tanner use

To get a skin worth a professional you MUST use patience
until the skin is supple.

After having made the skin soaked into the solution for many
days cut a small piece and check if the colour is well
uniformed all over the skin. If it is uniformed then it is OK.

But if there is a difference between this piece from the
side and the middle of the skin then let it soak again one
or two more days.

Don't do the usual beginner error which is to remove the
skin before it is uniformly and entirely tanned.

After the tanning is done, remove the skin from the solution
and rinse it down very well using a hose or in a bucket till
the water is clear and that all the fat and impurity are off.

Now place the skin on a support with its fur on the outside.
Avoid to place the fur in the sun. Place it in a cool place
with a breeze so that it dries well.

After many days when the skin and the hair are still lightly
damp, roll it down while placing the sides facing one
another and let it dry for one night.

If the skin has dried too quickly before it was rolled just
damp the interior side with a sponge and roll it as said.

Work the skin while stretching the skin on a smooth wood bar
and twisting it with your hands. Do this #petrissage# as
long as it is necessary until the skin is real supple.

The Indian women used to bite softly the skins for days, but
then again they had time during the winter and their skins
were a marvel of softness.

In order to help you along using your finger tips while
massaging the skin softly use #huile de pied de boeuf# or
corn or cotton seed oil along your work which will penetrate
the leather & make it supple.

To clean a dull fur fill a plastic bag with oat meal
flour or saw dust, place the fur into the bag and
shake the bag well till this dry cleaning is done.

It works wonders but don't tell the dry cleaner he will go
berserk. Next brush the fur till it swells smooth down the
sides of the leather skin using rough sand paper rolled into
a small piece of wood.

The method is the same whether it is a fur or ordinary
leather but if you desire to remove the hairs then do it,
before the tanning operation is done.


In order to this the easiest method is to let the skin soak
during 5 days or more, if the weather is cool into a
solution of 500 gram of #chaux# hydrated mixed with 3 litre
of rain water into a wood container (not metal).

Stir it from time to time with a stick and MAKE SURE that
this solution does not come into contact with your skin or
clothes since this solution is #caustique# and risk to burn
you. So use rubber glove.

Once the hairs start to peel off, rinse the skin well with
soft water and lay it down on a piece of wood having the ex-
hairy surface facing up. #racler# the skin using the back of
your knife to remove the rest of the hair.


Raw leather is a leather that has not been tanned usually
without its fur and which has been treated by drying and
extension. This leather is used to make sandals soles, shoe
laces, tam-tam head etc.

It has this specific property to retract when drying which
makes it very good to hold tightly any object to which it is

To obtain this raw leather first ask the animal to remove
its jacket or do it for him and #echarner le# as we have
seen above from all its flesh but do not wash it.

Eliminate the hair according to the method above or using
ashes from hard wood mixed with water which makes a kind of
acid which will help you remove the hair.

In order to do this method spread a damp paste of these
ashes on the hairy side of the skin and roll the skin with
its hair inside. Using a weight maintain the rolled skin in
a solution of ashes and water.

Don't forget to wear rubber gloves while doing this. Let the
skin soak into the solution till the hairs come off easily
#racler# the skin with the back of your knife to remove the


If you are using a SHEEP skin then the removal of the fat is
very important because the skin will spoil otherwise.

So for that skin you will do a first washing without any
detergent product and rinse it many times using rain water
then make a fast wash using a soft soapy product then you
twist the water off and put in on a frame to dry.


It is made of 4 thick branches made into a rectangle and
strongly held together by criss-crossed leather tongs.

Its dimension MUST be much bigger than the skin that you
want to dry in order to stretch this skin to its maximum.
For a dinosaur use Texas! or JERUSALEM!

Using a nail or a punch you make regular series of holes all
around the skin.

Don't make the holes too close to one another otherwise the
skin will rip apart. For ex. On a sheep skin one would punch
holes every 5-6 inch.

Next you attach the skin to the frame using these holes and
a leather tong or a fine rope or salmon fish line going
alternatively from the skin to the frame till all the skin
is extended.

Stretch the skin regularly on its sides, bottom and top so
that the skin is well flat.

As soon as the skin is dried you can then #teinter# then you
make it supple on all its surface using a small wooden
hammer to pound it down.

Lay the skin over a thick coat of newspaper or on a hard
surface but smooth and you hammer it down with short and
oblique (slanted blows).


Rawhide is prepared more easily. You can dry the green skin
in the shade at odd moments scraping the flesh side as clean
as possible with any dull instrument such as a piece of rock
or bone flattened on one side.

The skin may be conveniently held by stretching across the
knee that portion that is being worked.

Or like many of us you may prefer to leave it tacked or
pegged to some smooth surface where hungry birds will in all
probability aid your efforts.

If you want the rawhide to be soft, you will probably have
to wet the flesh side.

Allow it to dry and then re-scrape the skin, doing this as
many times as may be necessary until the hide is
satisfactory pliable.

Care MUST be taken not to dampen the other side if retention
of hair or fur is desired. If this is too long, it may be

If you want the hair off entirely, that can be easily enough
accomplished when the pelt is first secured by wetting the
coat until it starts to slip, whereupon you can scrape if
off in great clumps.


The Amerindians OJIBWAY'S and others were tanning the
leather according to a process which is still used all over
the world today.

They knew that the bark of some trees such as the oak, the
Canadian Spruce, #Sumach# and #epinette# *** produce a
substance particularly good to protect & make the skin

We now know this to be #tannin#.In order to extract this
#tannin# the Indians would boil several pieces of bark into
water and would then soak the skins into this solution 2 to
3 days for a small piece and for many weeks with a bigger
piece such as Bison, Buffalo. Dinosaur = 1 year.

When the tanning was done they would rinse the skins into
the next river, then they would beat, twist and bite the
skins till they became supple.

Next they would smear them with animal fat in their case
bear fat which would increase its suppleness. Even today the
tanning done with Oak bark is very well appreciated.

The only draw back that this may have, is that the natural
vegetal tanning gives a dark colour to the skin, but who
cares when it is home made by the best artist around which
is you of course.

SKIN SMOKING: (Smoke-king?)

This method was more specifically used in the case of deer

The skin was removed from its hair with the use of the ashes
water noted above then they would rub the skin with the
brain of the animal then they would stretch it on a frame to
dry up by smoking.

This method would then prevent the skins from moulding later
on even when damp. To boot it gives a golden colour and
smells real nice especially if the wood used is from a fruit

This smoking method can be used for most skins of average
weight including cow and horses but especially good for deer
skins. The smoked leather is well sought for by leather

To smoke a skin as the Indians first dig a hole about 60 cm
in diameter and 30 cm deep. Burn enough wood so as to obtain
a thick layer of ashes and coals.

Next using 4 thin but strong Green branches (don't use dry
wood) construct a kind of support linked at the top by
leather tong and onto which you will then spread the skin
which has been previously skinned.

MAKE SURE that the skin will not get burned by being too low
and too close to the embers.

Spread some Green wood, onto the fire and watch it over till
the leather obtains the desired colour.

In order to obtain an equal colouring move the skin from
time to time. You simply do this by moving the frame around
the fire.


Very easy to do. First draw on a piece of cardboard your
foot print adding about 1 cm. all around it.

Next cut into a piece of leather the sole according to your
pattern and affix lacing to the sole thus cut.

Then they will be either nails with rivets or staples or
simply laced using small holes perforated in the sole
outside part.* translation needed here*

Note: That the feet are not similar, so MAKE SURE you cut
the pattern for each foot individually and not of the same


They have many forms and were used traditionally by Indians
of North America. Their style would vary from regions to
tribes but they all had several common points.

The upper part was made from tanned leather usually smoked
to increase its resistance and the sole was made from soft
supple leather.

The Apache style is made from 3 pieces. Using a heavy
leather which is tanned and oiled(Oil makes it better

And then you cut the pattern on some kind of paper MAKING
SURE that each foot has its own pattern being different one

#Batissez les morceaux du patron# and try it out before
reporting it on the leather.

The pattern is made from the left foot you can reverse it to
make it for a right foot but then it is still better to have a
pattern for each foot.

Since the leather is a thick one, it will then be necessary
before sewing it to pierce holes using a nail or a punch
(#alene) or one of those #griffe a trous# sold in leather
and art craft stores.

The stitches will be done at the #point de sellier# and the
thread will be strongly pulled after each stitches so that
it penetrates well into the leather.

The stitching as well as being decorative will also be solid
and resistant.

MAKE SURE that the holes pierced into the sole be slightly
more spaced off that those of the #empeigne et du

This difference permits you to compensate or make up for the
superiority of the perimeter of the sole and gives a #effet
de fronde#.

Now all you have to do is to make shoe laces as shown above
using the same leather as of the moccasins and then you
slide them into the slits made into the #contrefort# of the


1) Put your foot on a cardboard, a Kraft paper and draw
your footsy with a pen held vertically then draw the pattern
of the sole by adding 3 cm to the heel and to the tip and
2.5 cm to the sides and proceed, behold to do the same for
the next footsie.

2) Next you make the pattern of the #empeigne# by adding
0.5 cm to the largest widest part of the foot (line*AB).**

And add 10 cm. to the distance held between your big toe #et
le haut du coup de pied# as seen on line CD*.

3) Next the height of the #contrefort# of the moccasin
will be of 10 cm. and its length will go around the ankle
and override it by 1 cm. on each side of the #empeigne#.
Verify the measures #sur le contour du patron# of each foot.

4) Using a nail or #alene# pierce holes at 0.5 cm. from
the edge of the soles and of the # contreforts# #et de
l'avant de l'empeigne#.

Space them out at equal distance between them with the
exception of the sole where they will be closely made.

5) #La couture au point du sellier# which will maintain
the sole to the #empeigne# will be started at the centre of
the #empeigne# then it will keep on the edges while the
stitching which will join the #contrefort# to the sole will
be started in the middle of the #contrefort#.

6) To do a stitching #au point du sellier#, thread a
needle at both ends of the thread.

At the first hole #egaliser les 2 longeurs du fil# and
introduce the needles into the following holes going in
opposite direction and then keep on going that way till it's


You can also make Babouche that have the advantage that they
don't have any difference between the right or left foot.

Cut 4 soles into some thick leather following the size of
your foot. Pierce holes all around and sew 2 thickness

Into some leather #decouper le dessus du pied et les
contreforts# following the PIX #?****.

#Couser chaque dessus du pied sur l'envers starting par la
pointe# into the same holes that those made for the soles.
All you have now to do is to add the heel band.


They are made from raw leather cut into thin circular
(spiral) stripes done directly from the skin. Place the skin
on a flat board and use a nail which will form the centre of
the #spiral#.

Using a sharp knife held vertically trace the #spiral#
starting from the outside going toward the centre. Once the
#spiral# is all done then you unroll your new shoe lace work
of art.

Since nothing is stronger than a rope with 3 thread one can
use this leather laces to make himself one.

If one has the time and needs a rope, all the has to do is
to lay the skin flat on the ground and wet the skin a bit to
help you when cutting it.


After cleaning, place the skin in water and weight it down
with stones. Leave it until the fur can be pulled out in
handfuls-usually 2-3 days.

Make a mixture of animal fat and brains, simmered over a
fire till they form an even consistency. Scrape the skin on
both sides, removing hair, and grain. Keep it wet.

Work sitting down with the skin over your knees. Keep
manipulating it. Work the fat and brains mixture into the
inner side of the still- wet skin, stretching and
manipulating as you do so.

Dry the skin in the smoke over a fire, keeping it well away
from the flames. The smoke sets up a reaction with the
solution you have rubbed in to make the skin supple.

Hide is one of the best materials for lashing and for thongs
to lace things together.

Cut short laces straight from the skin, along its length. To
obtain a greater length cut in a spiral-keep the width
consistent or the thronging will have weak points


The hamstring and the main sinews of the legs-especially of
the larger animals-can be dried and used as thread to stitch
hides together for shelter and clothing.

Recognise them by their strong white cord-like appearance.
You can also function of the bladder is to hold water, so
naturally the bladder of a large animal can be used as a
water carrier-so can the stomach. Tie off the openings to
seal them.


The death of "willkat98"

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Old 09-10-2004, 11:56 AM   #2
somebody shut me the fark up.
Mark's Avatar
Join Date: 08-13-03
Location: St. Peters MO

For very large animals, I prefer to cut off all appendages from the torso. and then roll the torso home. Letting a little bloating set in from decompositions ("aged" meat) adds a desirable pneumatic tire effect.
Dr. Mark (STL)
Ph.D. (honorary) Bovine $hitology

A thin line separates paranoia from an acute understanding of reality.
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Old 09-10-2004, 02:04 PM   #3
somebody shut me the fark up.
Arlin_MacRae's Avatar
Join Date: 04-14-04
Location: Choctaw, OK

For if an animal carries disease a break in the skin
provides easy entry to your beautiful body!
Yep, that's me.

What language was this originally written in, I wonder?
Arlin MacRae

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