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The Hoop Stretcher


This consists of a hoop made from one or more flexible switches

tied together so as to form a circle. In order to be adapted to

this mode of stretching, the skin should be flat, i. e. taken

off as described on page 172, the initial cut extending from the

lower jaw to the vent. The size of the hoop required depends upon

the dimensions of the skin. Lay the latter upon some flat surface

and so gauge the hoop as that it sh
ll surround the pelt on all

sides; after which the latter should be secured or laced to the

hoop with twine at the edges. All loose parts should be drawn up,

and the skin should everywhere be stretched like a drum head. When

this is accomplished it is the custom with many trappers to apply

the preparation described on page 273, particularly where the skin

is thick and fatty. But we are rather disposed to discourage the

use of any preparation whatever, in any case, as they are by no

means necessary.

In using the board stretchers the fur should always be on the inside,

and when the hoop or bow is used it should be placed in such a

position, that the air may circulate freely on both sides of the

skin, which should not be removed until thoroughly dry.