Two Things You MUST have for Skinning:::
- An awesome sharp as hell knife,made for skinning (I didn't have this)
- Rope to hang it up and hold it in place
1. My knife sucked, it is imperative you have a very sharp skinning knife (otherwise the gross factor and accidental punctures are in high frequency).
2. The COLD! It was freezing freaking cold out, so cold that the animal's fat was all sticking/congealed and the skin was tougher to pull.
3. I could not cut by the anus. I have anus issues. I had to eventually cut a big circle around the whole tail, balls, anus area because something green emerged from the anus, terrifying me.... and i was all alone out there with a dull knife.
When the green stuff emerged I lost my ability to deal with the project and had to step away. For a few days. Working up a plan and nerve to go back to it- the 30 degree weather kept the poor half cut thing well refrigerated till I came back to him with full resolve to finish what I started.
I PULLED! And pulled! Just like i was told to do, trying as hard as i could to peal off the skin. I pulled so hard I heard the wood beam I hung it from cracking and i nearly lifted my feet off the ground using full body weight.
I Pulled More! It pealed a little, mostly along the back - the belly was rock hard with fat. Out of fear I was going to rip down the porch beam and was a little defeated by my own lack of strength I had to stop.
I decided to accept my fail, and cut a small piece of the soft fur off it's back that was good, so that I can watch the process of drying (just to learn from it!)
I cut him down finally, and put the rest of his body to rest - and then took the skin off to the side to de-fat it.
When the skin is pulled off it has excess fat that has to be scraped off - which in the freezing cold outside is not too easy. I was told though getting rid of the fat makes the "leather" more pliable. (This is without tanning it after either - which I wasnt ready to do the non toxic way... with brains.)
I scraped it best I could with my shitty knife, and hung it up outside. I look forward to seeing how it dries and oh please gawd someone tell me this is easier when the circumstances are right!!!