Cutting up the whale was the most complex and most characteristic part of the whale processing procedure. The whaling ships returned to the factories at the end of each day so that the processing could begin immediately, as whale meat did not last. The most specialized job was cutting up the animal. This job was done by men on the cutting floor. They wore boots with nails in the soles to prevent slipping on a floor that was impregnated with greasy whale blubber.