So, I'm sure someone out there has been doing this technique or something like it, but I had to do a Peacock rather quickly recently and also wanted to improve on cleanliness. In my experience fleshing trains on Peacocks, the skin inside the back pallet and the feather follicles are so inundated with fat that they can never be truly rid of it. So, I decided to de-construct it.
This method took me about an hour and a half.
First, remove the back pallet and the actual tail. (If you haven't done a Peacock before, I refer you to this tutorial on doing a removable train. It has photos of the areas I'm talking about. http://www.taxidermy.net/forum/index.php/topic,247326.0.html
Now, some geometrey:
The train is a grid of feathers roughly 13-17 rows and about 10 columns that window each other. Each feather follicle enters the skin on a pallet of fat. The pallet looks kind of like this graphic I made here:
Start from the bottom row and use a sharpened wire to thread through the quills below the skin line.
Now, cut the above fatty quill / follicle off. Yes, you'll loose a tad bit of length, but the pest prevention and time save is worth it.
Label them by number and which side is the underside or top of feather. Hang them:
Do the same threading method for the tail. Then, cut a piece of wire mesh to create a tail base and cover in bondo.
Insert tail exactly where it would go on the body. This (and the gap from the back feathers) will help you figure out a size for your back-pallet mesh. You could also trace it first, however the pose of your peacock can effect that. Dont attach the mesh yet, just make sure the shape and the size are accurate.
Hang the wire mesh up and start attaching the wires with the feathers on them. You can window the feathers some as you go, but they will slide on the wire. This is good because it makes the train still 'groomable'. You could bondo the feather butts like the tail if you want to create a very specific train look that is permanent.
Attach to your peacock with wire, screws or even foam/bondo. I leave my trains removable by setting with upholstery pins hidden throughout.
My client ended up wanting the peacock on a higher base at the last minute. I was able to completely change the train very easily because it was just wire and mesh. Took me 5 minutes.
I hope this is helpful. Again, I just kind of thought about it based on necessity. I'll may make some slight changes, but I couldnt be more pleased with the time I saved fleshing & drying and the cleanliness.