well trust me for my sake i wish you guys the best of luck. skinning is really the only thing i've ever done as far as game modding is concerned.
it took a little bit of figuring things out to skin for single player in JA, what with the exta model components and all. and heck i was proud of myself for figuring out how to use those multi-model .skin files and the alpha transparency levels in their .pngs(which actually turned out to be more of a problem with photoshop handling the .png format incorrectly....took forever to find a plugin that would work) but this is way out of my league.
so good luck on your progress. i am with you in spirit.