Butchering station ideas??
General Topic
Contributors to this thread:
t-roy 06-Oct-20
Inshart 06-Oct-20
Charlie Rehor 07-Oct-20
pav 07-Oct-20
woodguy65 07-Oct-20
midwest 07-Oct-20
cnelk 07-Oct-20
LBshooter 07-Oct-20
APauls 07-Oct-20
Old School 07-Oct-20
t-roy 07-Oct-20
t-roy 07-Oct-20
LINK 07-Oct-20
griz 07-Oct-20
butcherboy 07-Oct-20
rock50 07-Oct-20
woodguy65 07-Oct-20
butcherboy 07-Oct-20
rock50 07-Oct-20
rock50 07-Oct-20
rock50 07-Oct-20
Quinn @work 07-Oct-20
butcherboy 07-Oct-20
The last savage 08-Oct-20
Charlie Rehor 08-Oct-20
IKE220 08-Oct-20
t-roy 08-Oct-20
Dennis Razza 08-Oct-20
rock50 08-Oct-20
From: t-roy
06-Oct-20
I didn’t want to hijack the other “processing” thread. I do most of my own butchering, grinding, packaging, etc. All but making sticks or salami. I’m in the process of building a heated shop, and am looking for possible ideas or suggestions for things to possibly incorporate into the work/butchering area.

I’ll have an electric hoist, and a hanging rail, that will hold up to 4 deer. The bench/workstation area is in flux right now. Any ideas are appreciated. Thanks in advance.

From: Inshart
06-Oct-20
I wonder if making something like those fish cleaning tables with a hole to just push the "unwanted" debris into a bucket below?

I would think "butherboy" would be a good one to chime in on this.

07-Oct-20
Yeti holder for coffee or cordial depending on time of day.

From: pav
07-Oct-20
Hey Troy. Back in the day, we butchered on stainless steel tables with 12" of poly cutting board at the front. That's really all the actual cutting surface one needs. The board just lifted off for easy cleaning. Some of the stainless steel tops were drilled for mounting small equipment...such as tenderizers.

I'm not sure if that type of table is still available today though? Seems like everything I see these days has a complete poly top. Wish I had room in the garage for such a table. As it is, I just use a three foot section of that 12" poly board on my work bench....or wherever I'm processing. Have poly board - Will travel!

From: woodguy65
07-Oct-20
Did you put a drain in the floor?

From: midwest
07-Oct-20
I would make sure you have plenty of parking and hanging space for guests who may want to borrow your facilities.

...and a beer fridge. ;-)

From: cnelk
07-Oct-20
Put some thought into good lighting. The best lighting arrangement in a space casts no shadows.

From: LBshooter
07-Oct-20
Look on Craigslist in the restaurant equipment and get a stainless ateel table cheap, easy clean up .

From: APauls
07-Oct-20
High ceilings is key, but I'm sure you already have that built in. A bar or at least capabilities would be a must ;) Maybe leave access through the wall for a small chimney you could hook up to a smoker and have the smoker inside. Nothing better than cutting while you have meat going on the grill. A smoker inside would be nice for winters. Not sure how close it is to the house.

From: Old School
07-Oct-20
We just finished building our house. I wanted our garage to also be something functional for cleaning fish and processing deer. Here’s what we did. I’ve got multiple stainless tables - smallest is a 4’ and largest is a 10’. We’ve also got 15 LED light fixtures and 4 oversized windows to ensure plenty of light. Lastly I wanted a functioning sink so there was no additional need to “finish up” in the kitchen. 1. Stainless tables 2. Great Lighting 3. Functioning sink with hot water 4.Get some of the exercising high density floor mats. They really help with leg and lower back pain/fatigue from prolonged standing.

From: t-roy
07-Oct-20
Thanks for the ideas, so far, guys.

Yes, I did put a floor drain in, and I will also have a sink with hot and cold water available, but the sink won’t be located in the immediate work station area. I will most likely, run a water line overhead from the source, over to the work area, (approximately 30’ away) instead of having to string a hose out for cleanup. I also plan on being able to switch from hot to cold on that line through a manifold. I’ll definitely have a fridge as well. Might steal Ziek’s hanging bar idea from the other thread, for the fridge as well. Good lighting is definitely a priority, too. I’ve got a couple of 24”x36”X2” poly cutting boards that work great. I’ll have to keep an eye out for a stainless steel top. Not a bad idea about the hole in the table for scraps, either.

I’ll have to decline on the coffee/cordial drink holders, though. It keeps your mind sharp trying remember where you set your beer down (or if this one is your’s or your buddy’s)! Nick....I’ve got plenty of parking available, plus I’m putting in a window facing the driveway, so we can see who’s coming. Hopefully we can keep the riffraff to a minimum that way.

From: t-roy
07-Oct-20
I’ve never done much smoking stuff (yet) The wife is really getting into using her new Traeger grill now, but being able to do it inside is definitely something to consider as well. The ceiling is 14’ high. The shop is approximately 125 yards from the house.

I’ve already got the exercise floor mats.

From: LINK
07-Oct-20
The only thing I can think of that I might want is to extend your hanging rail out a door so you could skin and wash a deer outside. If I was going that far I’d add a little walk in cooler at the other end of my rail. ;) I am considering adding on a little cooler to my shop so I can butcher my own beef as well as deer.

From: griz
07-Oct-20
Check your local scrap yard. Mine has stainless steel tables of all sizes all of the time. A few bucks more than the scrap value and they are happy. If they don't have any at the moment, leave your number. I go by mine almost daily and they always have a bunch on the stainless pile.

From: butcherboy
07-Oct-20
Definitely need a stainless steel table. I would use that for packaging and invest in a separate poly top table for processing. Extend your rail outside for skinning and washing carcasses. You would need double doors with a small cutout for the rail then hang plastic curtain strips to keep insects out when the doors are open.

If only doing deer then keep the rail height about 8-9 feet. Anything bigger will be fine as quarters. If you skin and hang the animal outside then your hoist needs to be set up in a way to transfer to your hanging rail. Build a small cooler in the shop with the rail running right into it. You don’t want to use the hoist on the same rail that runs into your cooler unless you use a second hoist inside separate from the rail. That hoist moves back and forth towards the rail and should be about 3 feet higher. This hoist can also be stationary but it needs to be close to the rail so you can swing the carcass over and above the rail then lower it down. It’s a good way to get the carcass off the rail too. With the right height, you can pull quarters off the carcass while it’s hanging, remove backstrap, tenderloin, then the rib cage. Only thing to lift off would be the hind quarters.

Don’t really need a table with a hole in it for waste. Just losing table use. Put a 55 gallon barrel with a contractor bag inside next to you and just throw the waste in there. Put a bungee cord around the rim or the weight of the waste will pull your bag right into the barrel.

Get a double or 3 compartment sink for washing knives, totes, grinder parts, etc.

Look for auctions for used meat processing tables with poly tops and stainless steel tables. Make sure and have good knives, sharpening stones, and steels. Boning hook and get a knife scabbard. It’s easy to have an accident with knives laying on the table.

Sorry this is long. I could go on for a while but I think this will give you a pretty good idea. It’s a lot but not difficult to set up and you will have a nice shop!

From: rock50
07-Oct-20

rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
We clean the drain at the end of the hunting/butchering season.
rock50's embedded Photo
We clean the drain at the end of the hunting/butchering season.
In 2006 we built a 40' X 80' shed and put a butcher shop across the front 24'. The butcher room is 24' X 32' and the remaining 8' is a mechanical room and a walk in 8' X 8' cooler with a 10' ceiling. The rail extends from just inside the overhead door to inside the cooler where it loops around inside the cooler to allow us to hang up to 18 deer.

We have a refrigerator, stove, double sink, and a deep sink

My sons are contractors and did a lot of work inside a processing plant where we were able to buy their old stainless tables with poly tops. We took one section of poly out and put maple boards in it to mount the stuffer. The processing plant also sold us stainless portable sinks (6' long) that are useful for grinding into and mixing sausage.

By hinging tables to the wall we gained a lot of space when they fold out of the way. We also put a stainless steel table top on kitchen cabinets on a rolling frame, provides a lot of portable storage and workspace for vacuum packing meat.

I told my sons the shed is paid for in what we saved in processing since 2006. Last year we did 24 deer, 5 elk, and 3 hogs. That's our usual numbers except for the elk, it's usually just 1 or 2 (if we're lucky).

Future plans include building a block smokehouse outside the shed.

From: woodguy65
07-Oct-20
Impressive Rock!

From: butcherboy
07-Oct-20
From rock’s pictures this is pretty dang close to what I was talking about. Pretty nice set up for a non commercial operation.

The only thing I would do differently is either have double doors for the outside door with the rail extending outside. Or, a sliding door on tracks for the door to slide open on the outside with the rail extending out. Another option most don’t think about is adding a switch or two here and there on the rail. This would allow having multiple rails going different directions. One rail coming in with a switch to turn it into the cooler. Comes out of the cooler and flip the switch to go onto another rail that could run straight by a cutting table. Could also add multiple rails and switches in the cooler if you really wanted to be fancy. Lol

From: rock50
07-Oct-20

rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
We have one switch on the rail, you can see it in the upper left corner of the fourth picture on my first post.

An additional upgrade is a power stuffer. Everyone is wore out after cranking for several hours.

From: rock50
07-Oct-20

rock50's embedded Photo
rock50's embedded Photo
Agree with butcherboy's suggestion, it would be nice to have the rail go outside. However, we can back a pickup into the shop to get under the rail.

Most of our deer are taken from the property where the shed is located. We usually don't field dress the deer, we haul it in with quad & trailer or with the tractor bucket. The guts can be dropped into a tub while the deer is on the rail, it's a whole lot cleaner, and we can be at the shed within minutes so we don't think quality suffers.

From: rock50
07-Oct-20

rock50's embedded Photo
742# of boned out elk
rock50's embedded Photo
742# of boned out elk
One more post and I'll stop.............

I added a trench drain to the cooler, much better than the 6" circle drain.

Also the walls behind the hanging tables and inside the cooler are covered with FRP. Makes cleanup easy.

From: Quinn @work
07-Oct-20
T-Roy,

The invite to come hunt whitetails on your land is enough. You don’t need to build a butcher shop for me. :)

JK

From: butcherboy
07-Oct-20
Yep, I saw your switch and that’s what reminded me to mention it for those who are wanting to build themselves a processing room.

Another suggestion would be to to skin the back legs down to below the tendon, break the legs off and then hang it on the gambrel. Skin it all the way down then eviscerate after the hide is off. Makes skinning the belly and flank a little easier if done before opening the belly. That’s just how we do domestic animals and it keeps everything cleaner.

You definitely have a nice processing shop and an electric stuffer is the way to go. Next you will be wanting a bigger grinder! Lol if you did get one I would recommend a mixer/grinder. My stuffer only holds 40 lbs and we do about 400-1,000 lbs in a day. We are looking at getting a vacuum stuffer that will hold 150-200 lbs at a time.

08-Oct-20
Very cool thread!

08-Oct-20
Very nice setup Rock, you and the boys have it going on !!! Good to see, some excellent ideas mentioned...

08-Oct-20
Rock50: So cool and love the pic with the whole family involved. C

From: IKE220
08-Oct-20
Very nice!! When the work is done it doubles as a gathering place for family and friends, with plenty of good food and hospitality. Good luck this fall Mark!!

From: t-roy
08-Oct-20
Holy smoke, Rock! You took it to a whole other level! The outside rail is a good idea, but not really practical in my circumstance. I’ll probably only butcher 5-10 deer total, between me and friends, plus other animals occasionally.

Thanks guys! Lots of great ideas, so far. Keep em coming!

From: Dennis Razza
08-Oct-20
I was at Marks place a few years back. It was impressive to see the entire family working together in the shop. His setup is amazing!

From: rock50
08-Oct-20
We're hoping to hang a buck and doe for Dennis here in the near future!

I think the best part of getting this shop built was my wife's happiness in getting it out of the garage and basement kitchen where we did all the cleanup.

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