Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books
A Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology

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flaying

The process of removing the hide or skin from an animal carcass. Flaying is normally the job of the butcher, and, in general, the methods used in flaying give first priority to producing a good quality carcass, not hide, as the animal is generally slaughtered for its meat.

The animal should be in a clean, healthy condition and the slaughter rapid and efficient. Bruising should be carefully avoided. The animal is bled after slaughter to remove blood from the carcass and also from the small veins and arteries in the skin. If this is not done rapidly, the blood will clot and putrefy, resulting in blue-black markings in the skin. The skin should also be removed immediately, while the carcass is still warm, as removal then is much easier. Subsequent to flaying, the skin cools down more quickly, giving less chance of putrefaction. Some form of curing generally follows flaying. See also: BRINING ;DRY-SALTING ;PUTREFACTIVE DAMAGE ;WET-SALTING .

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