pressure washing a hog

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by Ed Norman, Dec 7, 2003.

  1. Ed Norman

    Ed Norman Well-Known Member

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    We were scalding and scraping a hog yesterday. I remembered washing a truck once with a pressure washer a friend has for his airplane. It gets the water up to 200 degrees and no telling how much pressure. It also peeled paint off the old work truck I was washing. I got to wondering if it would knock the hair off a hog fast and easy, plus leave him clean and shiny.
     
  2. Ed that may work out pretty good but you may want to have a contingency just in case. I know in scraping a hog you want to heat your water 155 to 165 degrees to scald the hog in. Is there any way of lowering the temperature of the sprayer? 200 degrees may cook the skin and set the hair making it harder to remove.
     

  3. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    I suspect you would blast off hide also. As mentioned, perhaps lower the water temperature and then use it only as a substitute for a scalding bath - with still scraping the hair. For one thing it should take off all of the dirt on the hog.

    Ken S. in WC TN
     
  4. Ed Norman

    Ed Norman Well-Known Member

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    I looked in the catalog, they say the temp will go up to 200. I guess it is adjustable. It sure would clean up the hog nice, and I bet it would blast the hide off if you weren't careful.

    We got a clean new horse tank, about 90 gallons, to scald them in next weekend. I don't really want to build a fire under it to heat it. I saw on that 100 year old Handy Farm Devices book online the best way to heat a tank was to run a pipe from the tank and into a fire. I unscrewed the plug on the horse tank, threaded in a three foot pipe with a plug, and ran it thru a 35 gallon drum with a hole in the side. I built a nice fire in the drum and kept it going several hours and heated the water from 55 to 78 degrees. It would belch bubbles and hot water, but was too little to heat the thing. I can turn up the water heater in the house to 150, then run a hose from it to fill the tank. Then i only have to raise the temp another 15 degrees.
     
  5. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    An old time way to heat a large quanitity of water is to heat large rocks and then drop them in the water. It can make water boil. Of course, you have to have some method of taking the rocks out afterwards.

    Ken S. in WC TN
     
  6. Ken I think that would be a little too primitive for most of us! I know the native americans done that too cook their stew.

    Ed, when I was a commander in the Royal Rangers (christian type boy scouts) we had a camping manuel with all kinds of things to build for camping. One project was a outdoor hot water tank. It consisted of a 55 gallon drum barrel, 3/4" coiled up copper tubing, and fittings. You uncoiled the copper tubing just long enough to attach it to the lower side of the drum barrel. Then a pipe came out of the top of the barrel and attached to the center of the copper coil (the other end of the coil). The barrel was filled up with water and a small fire was built over the copper coil. The cold water from the bottom of the barrel would flow through the coil, heat up and flow to the top of the barrel. The water would circulate by itself until all the water was heated up. On the opposite side of the barrel was a water spiket about 1/3 of the way up from the bottom to get hot water from.

    We never did keep our little club long enough to build one of these but it sounds like it would work. My only question about the system was how hot can the coils get before it would melt.

    Good luck and let us know if you build one. Tell us if it worked.
     
  7. Ed Norman

    Ed Norman Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the replies. I had considered using hot rocks, and might still. I've done that when scalding chickens before. I had also considered using something like you describe, r.h., if I had the copper, I know I would. I don't think it would melt as long as it had water in it, it shouldn't get over 212 degrees if it didn't have any pressure. If I do use the tubing, I think I'll coil it to fit close to the turkey fryer burner.
     
  8. Wanda

    Wanda Well-Known Member

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    ED

    With a pressure you will drive dirt and debris INTO the meat!! If you did not keep the flow paralel you would bore a hole into the meat with the extreme high pressure. If you concentrate your efort on the proper water tempature you will be rewarded with a very easy job :) If you make the water to hot you have a PROBLEM.If the water temp. is good you should be able to "wipe" the hair off with your hands. Always remember feet and head should be done first,then the sides ect. :) Remember that a couple extra minutes for the proper water temp. wil be the BEST time spent on butchering day :D
     
  9. Oxankle

    Oxankle Well-Known Member

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    Yer a good woman Wanda!!!!

    I was reading just as fast as I could to get down here and warn Ed about that high pressure washer. He would have blasted dirt all the way thru his bacons.

    For my money, a 55 gallon oil drum with a thermometer handy is the best tool for hog handling. Get the water ready, lower the hog inside, haul him out, turn him over and drop in the other end. Then start scraping and use a pot to add hot water anywhere you think he needs it.

    We had a steel stand that permitted us to put firewood under the barrell and heat the water. It was easy to build a roaring fire to get it started, then as it neared the right temp add just enough wood to get it there and keep it there. We had a tall A-frame with a block and tackle with a gambrel to raise and lower the hog. Today it would be easy to use the boom on a tractor, or a front end loader.
     
  10. Ken Scharabok

    Ken Scharabok In Remembrance

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    After helping to hot water bath clean four hogs after Thanksgiving, I rather like the concept of using a high pressure washer as bascially a steam cleaner. The wane can be held far enough away to soak/spray the carcass without blasting off the skin. It just might flush off a lot of the hair by itself, leaving spot cleaning for scraping. This would avoid the cumbersome dipping method.

    Ken S. in WC TN
     
  11. That's right, Ken. Even at the extreme high pressure, I could touch my fingertips into the stream and let it strike a glancing blow with no real injury. I think with the right distance and angle, alot of the hair would blast off, along with the scurf. Unfortunately, the pressure washer is 150 miles away.

    Yesterday I got 12 feet of 3/8" ID copper tubing. I made coils and plumbed one end into the drain plug on the tank, the other hung over the top edge. I lit the turkey fryer and it started to sputter and jet hot water into the tank, along with some steam. I put a piece of hose on it to get the steam under the surface of the tank water. After an hour, it had raised the temp just a few degrees. The tube was too big and when it sent the heated water up the coils, the cool water rushing in behind cooled everything down.

    Today i got 20' of 1/4" OD tubing and made 16 small coils. This thing got to steaming right away but very little water came out, just steam. I think it is getting too hot.

    I have an 80 pound bronze gear blank from machinist days. I think I'll let it sit on the burner and soak up a few million BTUs then toss it in the tank. I need to get something figured out, butcher day is tomorrow.
     
  12. Mark in N.C. Florida

    Mark in N.C. Florida Member

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    Why not skin them Ed? It is a lot less work than scalding and scrapping. Skinning is really quite easy, if you are up to butchering yourself you can easily handle the skinning job.

    Good Luck and let us know the outcome and the method that you used.
     
  13. My wife likes the skin. End of story. And trust me, I can and have skinned most anything before. I know it is easier. But tell my wife she doesn't get the crunchy skin she likes, and there is trouble. She is the one who feeds and raises the hogs, so I guess it is her call.

    And I like the skin on the bacon. My grandma used to make it like that and I always enjoyed it as a kid. Still do now.
     
  14. Beeman

    Beeman Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone tried a hot tub wood heater like this www.cowboyhottubs.com ?
    I bet this would work and probably pretty quick.
     
  15. Ed Norman

    Ed Norman Well-Known Member

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    It sure looks like it would work, and be simple to build, too.

    Today I set the tank up on short sawhorses. I stuck the turkey fryer under one end. We filled it from the water heater with 150 degree water and it maintained that temp while we stuck the hog. I put plywood over the tank to trap the rising heat, that helped. We tossed him in, he bobbed around a few minutes, then we pulled him out and scraped him. Hair came off real fast. Just as we got him split and hung, sleet and snow started so we left the other hogs for tomorrow.