I've been pulling and cutting off chunks about once a week. I've been throwing a little rotten hamburger in the bucket about every 2 weeks too. I don't know what the deal is but the hottest the water has been is about 115deg and that only was for the first couple weeks, I don't know if that was enough to cook the meat, but it's a bit rare for me. Since then I have had very good control of the temp. keeping it in the 90deg range. I have used a small brush to get to some of the grease or white areas on the skull and it worked well. I'm waiting for a thermostat for the degrease portion of this fiasco. Once I get that, I'll be degreasing the "specimen". I too hope the next one works out a better. I don't know what the next one will be, maybe a squirrel or raccoon. It's gonna be road kill most likely. Here all we have for road kill is possum (I read that they're not a good choice because the skull comes apart, unless it's an older one). Skunk (Not sure if I want to go there for obvious reasons). So all that's left is squirrel, raccoon, maybe a dog or cat and deer, but I want something smaller than a deer for my next project, unless it's a nice buck of course! Thanks for all the info so far!