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fleshing and frustrated!

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by Hotburn76, Nov 21, 2007.

  1. Hotburn76

    Hotburn76 New Member

    Tonight I skinned out the head and felt pretty good about that. No holes on the eyes or tear ducts and the lips went pretty good to. Was tired since I came off of nights today but decided to dive right in on the fleshing. I have the Sallie beginners video and on there it looks pretty straight forward. I started at the lips and so far just on one lip I have three holes! I know you may be laughing right now as you read this, but this is my first cape ever. I went out to the local hobby store and bought a small wood carvers knife. Has a one inch blade in it but not flexible and it seems sharp. But when using it I feel like I am pushing way to hard to get the meat off and then when I feel like I am doing good, but pushing hard a hole pops up! Could I need a sharper blade and not have to push into the hide so much? Any advise on this and a direction I should take would be great. Again, I am a total novice at this but wanting to learn for a extra way to extend my hunt into the winter. Thanks guys, Jason.
  2. countryboy36

    countryboy36 New Member

    get yourself some safty razorblades it will help make your job easer

  3. visions of wildlife taxid

    visions of wildlife taxid love me or leave me, just dont try to convert me

    i use a sharp plain ole pearing knife by chicago cutlery, some use scalpels with 21 or size 22 blades, and i did get one last week to try it, but prefer my pearing knife, to split lips and turn nose and eyes, as far as fleshing the chin area, go slow and easy as if you get into the follicles say bye bye to the whiskers when its tanned, i do this all with the face in my hand, and move to the beam to do the neck and rest of the bodys or hides, Russ
  4. JohnSWA

    JohnSWA New Member

    Scalpels are great and you can choose from a wide variety of blades. I'm new to this sort of thing too, but I really like the sharp edge as well as the control you get from a scalpel.
  5. Uncle Harley

    Uncle Harley New Member

    but pushing hard a hole pops up! I think you answered you own question.........I am new as well, and I just went through the same thing...... The lip skin is pretty thin so use something sharp IE scalpel, razor blade, etc. and use a fleshing ball! If you don't have one go get a hard rubber ball or just break down and buy an actual fleshing ball..... With these things and patience and practice you will soon learn!
  6. visions of wildlife taxid

    visions of wildlife taxid love me or leave me, just dont try to convert me

    harley a fleshing ball is ok, but i learned on my fingers, and if you fear cutting thru to your finger you wont put holes in a hide, that is how we were taught at the school i went to, and i can fly right thru turning and fleshing now, to each there own, if a ball is what it takes to get the job done, get yourself one and give it a shot, as you will soon find out, there are dozens if not hundreds of ways to accomplish tasks in taxidermy, and no one way is right or wrong, Russ
  7. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Russ, we must've had the same teacher. I learned that to use your off hand as support, you insure the thinnest shave possible. Sure I cut my hands, dozens of times. But eventually my "muscle memory" took control and my sense of touch could "see" exactly where the blade was above it. Works great for me.
  8. visions of wildlife taxid

    visions of wildlife taxid love me or leave me, just dont try to convert me

    yep george i cant see doin it any other way, but i doubt we had the "same" teacher, im only 34, and my teacher was only in his 40's when i learned 5 years ago, ;D
  9. pyeager1

    pyeager1 Active Member

    Same method here Russ and George. Once you cut the thumb or finger a time or two with a razor blade, you get the feel for it quick!
  10. the easy part is the splitting eyes lips ears. on your ears get the ear splitter from supply house its easy fast and fun. next use your finger with a 22 scalpel blade and put your forefinger under the lip . as you start to cut you will feel the seam of the lip start to flatten out . turn over and look at it you still see a lip line do somemore you wont cut your finger if you use a sharp blade. let the scalpel cut by its own weight so to speak !when it goes flat your finger will tell you. to split the ears use the ear splitter after you Turn inside out very light pressure and 22 scapulae you will see the ear roll rite out to the seam cut along the cartlige white line until you see what the ear looks like before you turned it . the nose is pretty much the same I'm just a beginner also but i got that down pat fleshing the rest is my night mare mark c
  11. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    On the first cape, you are suppose to chop and hack it up. After the twenty-th cape you will be down to fleshing the face out in 10 minutes with maybe only one hole. Cutting holes is not the end of the world. Cutting holes comes natural, not cutting them takes practice, and that is what your first dozen of capes are for,,, practice. After time goes buy and your as ugly as George, you will skin,flesh, prep a cape without any holes, or even a worry or tought about a hole showing up, just like riding a bike.
  12. joeym

    joeym Old Murphey

    And you must have something very sharp. Use "name brand" scalpel blades. They will hold an edge 10 times longer than the Chinese imports. I prefer rounded end blades rather than pointed ones for fleshing
  13. 76 these guys are right on the money. You will get the feel. I also use my hand under the lips, eyes, nose, etc. It will come to you.

    Mr. T you are treading deep water. George might be aging on the hard side, but he still strikes like a young rattler. Especially you guys in your forties. lol Great forum. Happy Thanksgiving all. Frank
  14. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Frank, it's 49. And George himself wishs he looked like George Cloony.
  15. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    T, you mean I DON'T???
  16. cremmick

    cremmick New Member

    Like everyone else said, use a sharp scalpel to split the lips by putting pressure with your off hand on the hair side of the cape. Take your time. Your fingertips will tell you when you are getting close. As far as fleshing the lips and face, I use a good sharp scissors with a comfortable handle, Again, use your off hand to apply pressure on the hair side and start snipping the flesh off. The scissors allows for a pretty controlled cut. Don't try to cut too much at one time. Try to hold the scissors as parallel as possible to the cape when cutting. The greater the angle the more chance there is of cutting through the cape. Good luck.
  17. Cole

    Cole Amateur Taxidermist

    For a fleshing ball I've always used a burned out light bulb. I've been using the same one for about 1.5 years, but if it hits the shop floor I'll have to replace it again. ;D
  18. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Now Cole, some of us already know that your light bulb has been burnt out for some time now,,,, ;D
  19. I use a skife knife for the face area. It seems to be the best for me and it has a shallow cut. for turning the lips and eyes and ears I use a standard Wal Mart #11 exacto knife. I've used one since college and feel familiar with it. When I use a razor blade I get more cuts on my finger than I do on the deer.
    10 minutes to flesh the face? Thats great, it takes me over an hour to do the face and turn ears, eyes, and lips. I wish 10 minutes.
  20. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    Does anybody skin the lips instead of split them? I found it to be much better to skin the lip skin off the meat, yes it's thin, but try it a few times and see if it's better for you.