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Thread: My First Deer Skinning And Processing

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    Default My First Deer Skinning And Processing

    I did my first deer up the other day and I placed my game cam out to watch me so I can make improvements next time. I thought I would put it on here for the fun of it. I'm no expert so go easy. I can take constructive criticisms, I'm a big boy.

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    String builder/ Moderator Hutch~n~Son Archery's Avatar
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    For what I can see Mark it looks like a good job to me. Maybe some of the pro's can help more. But I think you did a good job. You might want to slow down a little your scaring me with that knife in your hand. Lol





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    Senior Member elkslayer4x5's Avatar
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    First, good job, 1st timer. It would be a bit easier if you'd tie off the gambrel so that it won't twist around so much on you. That is if you don't have someone to help hold it in place. When you get the skin down to the neck area, put you big ole foot on it and step down, much easier than wrestling with it. Now that you've got the hide off, go ahead and take off the front shoulders. Then go in for those backstraps, and don't forget to get the tenderloin, both of 'em. Remove the neck roasts, then the rib sections. Now we cut the rear hams off the pelvic bone at the hip joints, no need for a saw, all can be done with a sharp knife. Its much easier to seperate the cuts of meat while the rear quarter is on the table than hanging, less waste this way. Another tip is get yourself a good book on game processing, our favorite is " Preparing Wild Game by Creative Publishing INT. www.howtobookstore.com Goes into great detail on cuts of meat, recipes, etc. We had deer sauage meatloaf last night. Wonderfull, Yum, Next week we're having deer lasagna. Hope this will be of some use to you.
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    I don't have anything to tie off the deer to the floor. I need to find a short swivel so the deer can turn. The ropes from the pulley made it keep turning on me. I just don't want it much closer to the floor, my back don't like being bent over that much. I started out cleaning a lot of the sheathing of the hams and legs because I thought it would be easier since it was at eye level and attached so I had more to pull against. I got a little carried away from there and decided to separate all the muscle groups of the hams and legs. Next time I will still do the sheathing and then cut off the hams in a chunk.

    I like the boot tip on the neck and will give it a try. I used an elbow and my 200# on the rest of the hide and that worked well. Next time I'm not messing with the front legs below the shoulder. It was mostly tendons and connective tissue that clogs the grinder. This was a small deer and the neck was probably not worth the time spent either. Just my opinion but that's how I felt.
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    Senior Member Money Man's Avatar
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    Looks like a good job. Nice idea to use the trail cam. So how do you like doing it yourself vs. paying a butcher to do it? I agree with 4x5 about taking the front shoulders first. When butchering, I take the front shoulders then backstraps and tenderloins, then take the rib cage off, then separate the hind quarters. I take each section in the house and work on the kitchen counter. With skinning, we have found it easier to do the day of the kill when the hide is still warm. Also we found that as you peel the hide, we roll the hair side over onto the inside of the hide. The hair helps to grab and gives you a better grip. Any hair that gets on the meat is easily removed with a small propane torch.
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    Senior Member ElkSlayer's Avatar
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    MLN tie one end of gambrel to the wall with 550 cord or other small rope. all meat is worth retreaving if you own a grinder, if the lower legs clogs up yours ? I might sujest cutting thme it to smaller strips or get the grinder blade sharpend.. Mine eats them up like candy... oh yes skin em soon as you get it home and hung up, wipe meat down with white vinegar and water.. we use warm and about 50/50 and clean cloth. to remove any un-wanted hair and other debris..then slap a game bag on and let it hang and chill out. so long as it's cool out...early season here it's hot so after the wipe down it's right to the dismantle and into fridge for over night the sliver skin comes of easier once its dryed a bit and cold...good luck with future game processing
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    Quote Originally Posted by Money Man View Post
    Looks like a good job. Nice idea to use the trail cam. So how do you like doing it yourself vs. paying a butcher to do it? I agree with 4x5 about taking the front shoulders first. When butchering, I take the front shoulders then backstraps and tenderloins, then take the rib cage off, then separate the hind quarters. I take each section in the house and work on the kitchen counter. With skinning, we have found it easier to do the day of the kill when the hide is still warm. Also we found that as you peel the hide, we roll the hair side over onto the inside of the hide. The hair helps to grab and gives you a better grip. Any hair that gets on the meat is easily removed with a small propane torch.
    Money Man

    I like saving a $125 minimum per deer. The convenience charge of $125 per deer isn't ridiculous, but it adds up quick. I would like to shoot one or two more this year and my son wants one more too so I'm tried explaining to him how that money saved can be used for gas to go hunting more often. He still didn't get it. Kids think money just appears in your checking account whenever you need it.

    It is too hot here to let the deer hang outside. Thankfully I have a friend with a walk in cooler that I hung the deer in. He told me to leave the skin on or the meat would get dried out. Since I was asking him questions and he was giving me answers I did as he said.
    Last edited by MLN1963; 11-14-2011 at 06:03 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ElkSlayer View Post
    MLN tie one end of gambrel to the wall with 550 cord or other small rope. all meat is worth retreaving if you own a grinder, if the lower legs clogs up yours ? I might sujest cutting thme it to smaller strips or get the grinder blade sharpend.. Mine eats them up like candy... oh yes skin em soon as you get it home and hung up, wipe meat down with white vinegar and water.. we use warm and about 50/50 and clean cloth. to remove any un-wanted hair and other debris..then slap a game bag on and let it hang and chill out. so long as it's cool out...early season here it's hot so after the wipe down it's right to the dismantle and into fridge for over night the sliver skin comes of easier once its dryed a bit and cold...good luck with future game processing
    ElkSlayer

    I guess I was going about it wrong. I wanted the deer to be able to turn so it would move and I wouldn't. I thought it would conserve time and energy spent processing like an assembly line?

    What does the vinegar solution do compared to straight water?

    The neck and lower legs seemed like more tendons and connective tissue than meat. I will readdress this next time but I can see why a lot of hunters don't mess with them. My grinder is a hand crank job my F-I-L gave me and it works okay. Some day I would like a powered model but I will use this until then. Besides, turning the crank isn't hard or tiring when you make your 16 Y.O. do it!

    I think I will order that book you recommended today.
    Firecat 400

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    ES

    The book link you gave didn't work. Is this the book?

    Firecat 400

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    Just did my first solo this weekend. My dad helped me (explained and did it as I watched) with my first deer. It had been a while, so I was just going off of memory and what I have seen in a processing video. There is a great enjoyment for me in being able to take the hunt start to finish in doing the processing yourself.

    I know I got a lot to learn when it comes to the cuts on the front/rear quarters. I'm sure I could get a lot cleaner roasts on my next, I was in a little bit of a hurry because of the weather warming up this weekend. Took a good chunk of the rear and shoulder and cut for stew and grinding. Cut a few steaks out of the rounds. Took my sweet time with the backstraps/tenderloins and I know I got those perfect

    Didn't spend a ton of time on the neck, though I plan to with the next deer, I know there are some good roasts there and didn't do as much with the rib due to time and not wanting to cut through them with a hand saw.

    All in all, pretty happy with how it all turned out and I'll be having some great meals later this week
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