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Old December 7, 2012, 12:21 PM   #1
Wild Bill Bucks
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Hairy subject

The wind always seems to be blowing when I skin my deer, and always winds up getting hair on the meat no matter how careful I am. I have heard guys tell me that rinsing with a mixture of baking soda and water will remove hair from the meat.
I have used vinegar and water mixture to keep flys off of meat, but it doesn't do anything to help with hair.

Have any of you guys got anything you do to remove hair, besides having to pick it off by hand, before cutting and packaging?
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Old December 7, 2012, 12:28 PM   #2
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Pick it off by hand or run over it with a propane torch. No garden hose in the field.. Torch works pretty good.

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Old December 7, 2012, 01:52 PM   #3
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We always leave the skin on for transporting. We locate a processor in the area we are hunting and take it there. Spent the 50 bucks and let them do the work. Blood when left alone will make a skin and a bag of ice inside the carcass will cool it down. When I lived in New Jersey we hung the meat outside for 3 days to let it relax and bleed out. Cheese cloth will keep the fly’s out of the cavity
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Old December 7, 2012, 03:47 PM   #4
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I have used vinegar and water mixture to keep flys off of meat,...
...but if you have any gnats in the county, that vinegar will surely attract them.

As far as a rinse mixture, can't help ya there. Have used the torch method several times.
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Old December 7, 2012, 04:36 PM   #5
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Torch them first then vinegar and water, it will clean them right up. Once you get the hang of the torch without burning the meat you can get almost every hair. I still wipe them down afterwards just for good measure.
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Old December 7, 2012, 04:56 PM   #6
Brian Pfleuger
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I've never seen anybody use any method except a torch. Hair burns almost instantly. The meat doesn't even get warm.
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Old December 7, 2012, 05:13 PM   #7
Sgt Pepper
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What method do you use for skinning?
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Old December 7, 2012, 05:36 PM   #8
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What method do you use for skinning?
A couple of cuts and a golf ball under the skin and a rope ties to the bumper and wammo off with no problems
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Old December 7, 2012, 05:55 PM   #9
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For years we have been using duct tape to get the hairs off. Just tear you off a good strip of it, dab the sticky side against the hams or area that has the hair and it will pick up most of the loose hair. Works like a charm.
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Old December 7, 2012, 05:58 PM   #10
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I skin mine after I've hung it back at the (what little of it I get on the meat) is picked off by hand during processing.
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Old December 8, 2012, 09:34 AM   #11
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When I used to process my own liked to skin as soon as I got deer home. Seems the sooner the deer was skinned after shot, the easier it was to skin and the silver skin would mostly comes off with the hide.

Process I used (when not going to have a mount made):

1)AFTER knives are razor sharp. Just a note on knives. For skinning, I like a more flexible blade similar to a fillet knife with about a 5" razor sharp blade.

2) Hang deer via a singletree placed between hind legs, singletree hooks in slits cut in skin just below knee between leg bone and leg tendon. The rope/cable attached to singletree over something and winched up so the hind quarters are eye level.

3) Starting just above the knees and tarsal gland, cut the cape around the leg, then cut the cape down the leg bones enough to start peeling the skin down towards the hind quarters. Slowly pull cape down as far as you can making sure hairy side of cape stays away from meat while watching for the silver skin to stay on the hide. If silver skin starts to stick to the meat rather then the skin, stop. Take knife and cut silver skin down to the hide and try to get silver skin to again start coming off with hide.
Some just shed the skin and worry about the silver skin later. I try to remove it with hide as much as possible. This is the way I just prefer to do it.
I may have to use the knife again on the hide around the tail area depending how deer was field dressed.

4) Pull cape down as for as comfortable for me to pull. Deer is usually half naked . If I'm not saving the cape, I use my field knife and cut excess cape off but leave about 6-8" of loose cape remaining to get a handhold for the rest of the job.

5) I then stop , hoist deer up to a height comfortable to finish the rest.

6) At this point, grab a front leg, take knife and cut hide around leg and also up the back of the leg to the armpit and out toward the center of the chest.
Do the same with the other leg. Cut the hide from center of chest to throat.

7) Using either hacksaw or large tree pruners(sawzall works really well for all bone cutting), cut off front legs at start of skinned area.

8) Finish pulling cape down as far as I can. Usually around where the upper part of the leg/shoulder meet.

9)Finish pulling cape down till cape is around throat. Use your knife to cut around neck meat down to the bone. Use hacksaw to cut neck bone(spine) to remove head and attached cape.

10) Hose/wash carcass down at this time. After carcass has air dried, pick or torch remaining hair from meat. Re-hose carcass.

11) I had a small flatbed trailer I hooked to the riding mower that I would put a clean tarp on and lower carcass and cut rear legs off just above where I started skinning. Then trailer over to processing table for quartering to put in cooler and prep for processing.

Think all the steps are here. This sounds like a lot but once set up, from the time deer was strung up till it was quartered and in the cooler was usually 15-20min.

Last edited by shortwave; December 8, 2012 at 10:58 AM.
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Old December 8, 2012, 05:20 PM   #12
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Never had a fur problem on my venison. I keep the skin on the carcass till I get home. Then I hang it and skin it at home in a utility tent that I keep around just for that. Keeps the wind out and if its REALLY cold I can put a propane heater in there just to keep my hands from going numb.

I hang the carcass from a tripod I made out of scrap angle irons and chain. Then I skin with a very sharp skinner that my dad made. Its not what most modern hunters would consider a skinner (the blade shape is more like that of a pig sticker) but it works well for me and I've been using that knife for decades to do the job. Skinning is quick and easy and I can have the whole carcass skinned and quartered for butchering in about 20 min by myself. Usually it takes more time if there's someone else "helping..." Legs come off at the knees - you don't need a saw or other equipment to take them off. Then cut everything off from the bottom up. I hang my carcasses by the head so I work with the hind quarters first. I should clarify that when I say quartered it means I take the hind legs off then the front legs then the lower half of the carcass and then finally I'll decapitate the carcass and its off to the processing table in the kitchen. I do all this by hand with that one knife I mentioned.

My neighbor and others I've spoken to have mentioned using a propane torch to get rid of the fur that gets in your meat. Quick and easy they say, no big deal.
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Old December 8, 2012, 05:33 PM   #13
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Unless I missed it I didn't see anyone describe the actual cuts. The blade should always be used blade side up. That is slide the blade under the skin and cut up toward the hair. That way much less hair is cut. Much of skinning is pulling the hide off. Yes you can use your pickup !
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Old December 10, 2012, 12:46 PM   #14
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I'm with BerdanSS
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