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One of my uncles ate groundhog as he said it was cleaner than a chicken. This was in the olden days before mass raising in cages.

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My grandpa caught a groundhog that had gotten into his garden. He had a good laugh after serving it to everyone at the next family gathering. It was actually pretty good, but some of the family was less enthused about eating groundhog. 

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Took the time today  to finish up the skin, thought I'd post up a pic by pic:

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Ready to scrape

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As good as its gonna get.  Note how the  thickness of the skin increases the closer it gets to the head (left to right).  The marks on the skin are from the spring clamps I used to help keep the hide taut.  

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Washed, rinsed, and combed.  Little bit of road rash from the fatal hit and run.  

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Nice.  

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Tacked 

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Boraxed.  Should only have to re-borax once tomorrow, then another week or two of just moving the borax around to different spots.  

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It is good to have the time and space for little projects like this.  I often have tails or wings drying out in the garage or pcs of hide tacked out to bleach in the sun.  I am envious of the patina on that knife blade.  I have the same knife but in 20 yrs it hasn't been used much.  Think I will throw it in the tackle box or the truck kit.

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Nice job with the pelt. The fur is very durable and I am surprised it is not used more. I find the variegated fibers appealing for many patterns, and is easily dyed.

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21 hours ago, WJG said:

I have the same knife but in 20 yrs it hasn't been used much

That's about the age on mine.  It was lost for a few years there, I was happy to find it again.  Give the blade a coat of oil before you put it in the tackle box.  

 

14 hours ago, fshng2 said:

I am surprised it is not used more.

Thanks f-2.  Looking around at the prices of a full grouindhog skin, I was surprised at how expensive they were, so being the cheap bastard I am, I was happy to come across this on the side of the road.  Dyeing's my next step in the journey, I have a squirrel skin and and  a hen pheasant I've been thinking about dying.  

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niveker   Maybe in the fall you’d like to come down to our club and skin some Huns and some Ringnecks with me. We have a commercial kitchen that is quite useful.

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Question: I was given a deer tail by my grandson, he was so proud, I skinned it out and was careful to remove fat and flesh. Then I packed it with salt and put it in a baggie in my closet . Came back two months later and washed it well and dried it. Was that good enough or should I have used borax. 

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@Baron.    I wash everything I skin in Dawn detergent first.  I’m always amazed how much dirt comes off. Especially bucktails.

De bone, scrape off as much residual fat as I can and then apply kosher salt for a couple of days. Brush the salt off and it’s usually

good to go.  Borax I use mostly on bird skins.

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8 hours ago, Moshup said:

skin some Huns and some Ringnecks

I'd love to do that, Moshup.  

@Baron

Agree with Moshup, especial about the washing with Dawn.  I'm not sure it makes any difference, but I add a small amount of bleach to the wash with the Dawn, maybe a teaspoon or two, not enough to change/lighten anything, and it get rinsed out at the end.   

Salt, I think, is better suited for fattier skins as it does a good job of drawing out moisture quicker than the borax. I use borax as I always have some around the house,  but I don't think it's necessary.  Of course, I always have salt also, but not in the same quantity as borax, as I keep a box or two for various things around the house. 

I also like borax as it has some deodorizing properties and it will kill some insect, like fleas.   It does tend to leave a fine powder within the hair/feathers, but I count that as a guard against future infestation.  

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