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Nose Fleshing

Discussion in 'Deer and Gameheads' started by woakley144, Dec 12, 2015.

  1. woakley144

    woakley144 Active Member

    Does anyone else hate fleshing whitetail noses as much as I do????? When I get finished there is alot of Apoxey Sculpt work to do when I get the hide mount...... My deer look like they stuck their nose in a blender... :-\ Most of the cuts are very fine and on the nose pad, but once in a while I get a major cut somewhere on the nose.... :'(
  2. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Just my opinion, obviously, but I think that too many taxidermists spend far too much time fleshing areas that could be cut off on the noses. I see mounts every day that look as if a speculum was used in mounting it. Look at a reference nose and you'll see the nares are not flared and the nostrils are just not that wide open to begin with. As for me, as I begin to flesh this area, I let the skin tell me where the cartilage is underneath and I take a scalpel and cut all of it off. The most you have left is about a half inch area that will fold inside and be blended out with Apoxie.

    I use my left index finger to push the skin up as the scalpel shaves it away. It won't take but a few slips to let you know just how close you are to cutting through. Many people use a wooden punch or baseball bat to do it but I just never learned to cut off the skin without "feeling" the thickness of it with my finger. I'm told it's like peeling a carrot but I never much cared for carrot peels anyway.

    BTW Wyatt, if you get a moose, disregard all I said. I hate those miserable swamp donkey SOB's.

  3. woakley144

    woakley144 Active Member

    George, I really don't think a moose is in my future anytime soon....... LOL Unless they migrate south due to global warming.....

    I do use my index finger to work the entire area & the lips. I was using the fleshing beam I built but it didn't work out. The cartilage is one place I keep having problems but I'm going to get it if I have to cut my finger off..... NOT!

    This is the only thing I don't like tanning my own hides but I don't do enough to warrant sending them to the tannery, Besides, last year I got a couple hide back that were almost as bad a what I can do. I have a very good reference nose we case at convention a few years ago and use it when I am cutting the mannikin and mounting. I had to learn THAT little lesson the hard way from Jody Green when he was the judge of my first deer at the competition when I joined the association.

    I know that it is just learning the touch, like using the fleshing machine. I'll get it after many many hides and alot of bad words..........

    Thanks, as always you are a great mentor and willing to help anyone with the problems they have.

    Well, I guess I need to go finish the one I'm working butchering.....LOL
  4. met

    met New Member

    WO. try using a tennis ball. it fits nicely under the nose. and you can wrap your hand around it to make the skin tight.
  5. I use a combination of a beam and a fleshing cone along with a very sharp 6" filet knife. I know a lot of guys use a scalpel to split and flesh, but I've found the lip, nose/nostrils, and eyes are easier with a knife. If you pull the skin tight across a beam and keep your knife almost flat you can flesh/split in one step. I can do both eyes, tear ducts, nose and lips in about 10 minutes
  6. woakley144

    woakley144 Active Member

    @met, I have used one of those round light bulbs, but it doesn't seem to help much, the one I was fleshing today I did like George suggested, using my index finger so you can feel the blade. Seemed to work better for me.

    @ mike I have tried the knife but I just don't feel like I have the control I do when I use a scalpel.

    I fleshed the nose. lips and eyes and just cut one major hole in the muzzle. and that was because I was getting tired & just screwed up.
  7. Paul B

    Paul B Active Member

    Use my fingers as a beam, put finger inside nostril to avoid cuts and feel the blade. It takes many heads to feel comfortable but a nick here or there is pretty normal. Use a scalpel for around eyes, nose, mouth when turning, larger knife for open facial areas.
  8. scottdawg

    scottdawg Member

    A fleshing horn and a skife knife is all you need yes its that easy.
  9. George1419

    George1419 New Member

    The nose was always time consuming for me also until this year, I ordered a table mount fleshing ball from Mckenzie and it is perfect for me on the nose and eyes not so much the lips, I still use the finger for those. Pull the nose tight over the ball and shave toward the nostril, you will know when you have gone far enough because most of the time you cut it, due to the cartilage or corner of the nostril, then I stick the sharp end of my bodock cone through the nostril and shave on down, I made a bodock cone bc the pine was to soft, I don't get to thin until after tanning then I use the skife knife and cone, it's a lot easier after tan to shave thin,one trick is to leave as much cartilage on the head as possible when caping it out
  10. jason.fairbanks

    jason.fairbanks Member

    Its refreshing to see I have the same challenges as many of you. Its a learning process and you will get better and better with each new project. I use feel on raw skins and a fleshing cone for final prep after the hide is tanned and I'm getting good results. I butchered my first attempt at fleshing a caribou and ended up leaving a lot of extra for the tannery to deal with. As George said those SOBs are a different kettle of fish to properly prepare for tanning.
  11. KFLAH

    KFLAH Active Member

    I use a softball for the eyes and nose pad, and a fleshing cone for the nostrils...fingers if there are blood stains and can't see the skin real well.

  12. Click the link below my post and watch the free videos on fleshing for beginners. It might help you learn the proper way to flesh them
  13. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    And all these years I'd never heard of an "improoer" way.
  14. woakley144

    woakley144 Active Member

    Got everything fleshed!! Used some of the different techniques you guys suggested, I like the tennis ball idea for the nose, the use of my finger for fleshing noses and others. I really appreciate everyone giving me their ideas. They sure helped. That's one of the reasons I like Taxidermy.net everyone is willing to help others with the issues they have in the business!!!!
  15. Dawg3458

    Dawg3458 New Member

    Heres mainly what I use to flesh entire facial area.