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You are trying to over-flesh. You don't have to have them squeaky clean on the inside. Most small birds don't have enough fat to affect the mount.
I don't think its possible to skin out the skull. On gators, we don't even try. If they are mounted, the skin is preserved on the skull....
OK...I thought you were decreasing the girth.
HOLD THE BOAT!!! If you alter the mannikin, cut out half the girth difference, which would be a 5/8" strip out of the center.
I do half cast on all crappie and bream. Just finished several 3 and 4 lb crappie.
I've never been kicked off, and I've been here almost since the inception!
I would think that with proper salting, the saline they imbibe would toast them. I dry salted hides in a room with a dehumidifier. The...
About one per day, start to finish, is my speed.