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Beginners, Training & Tutorials => Tutorials => Topic started by: Jim B on December 12, 2007, 10:39:52 AM

Title: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 12, 2007, 10:39:52 AM
I don't usually remember to take photographs of antler repairs till they are finished.I've got this one to do and will try to post probably one picture a day as it progresses.I epoxied a 3/8" square rod in the antler.The rod was roughed up and notched on the grinder.Glue is Magic Smooth.I'm going to glue it into the skull today.I'll try to rough fill in the gap tomorrow,if I don't get any major interruptions.When I drilled the holes in the antler and pedicel,the core material was moist and greasy so I boiled and cleaned it well, after drilling.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs008.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Curt on December 12, 2007, 10:47:48 AM
Thanks for the post. I look forward to seeing this progression.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Whitetail Finder on December 12, 2007, 10:56:58 AM
That make two of us! Thanks for posting this project
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Josh K on December 12, 2007, 11:18:10 AM
Yea I love these kind of posts. Josh
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 12, 2007, 11:45:28 AM
I epoxied the rod into the pedicel.I used the dremel to notch the inside of the hole in the pedicel to help the glue grab even better.I braced the rack because it will be several hours before the epoxy gets hard.In general,the slower setting epoxies are stronger and this is the strength part of the repair.Inevitably,someone is going to pick the mount up by the rack.I'm going to let it set up overnight to get a good bond.I also used the dremel to bevel all sharp edges of the break and get rid of any splinters.This makes it easier to feather my epoxy putty(later) and blend it into the existing surface texture.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: plugitmc on December 12, 2007, 11:57:21 AM
I can't to see how it turns out thank for showing us.

Steve
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: rnviper3 on December 12, 2007, 11:59:46 AM
i have only half the picture.  i will be looking forward to seeing it finished.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: RoyalOaksTaxidermy on December 12, 2007, 01:41:04 PM
Cant wait to see how it comes along :) What epoxie putty are you using for the filler? Any particular type? And do you plan on painting or staining it?
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 12, 2007, 09:09:55 PM
I decided to mix some chopped fiberglass into the Magic Smooth and rough in the bulk of the antler and pedicel with that,instead of epoxy putty.Just trying to add to the strength.I'm going to surface texture over that with epoxy putty,maybe tomorrow.I'll let that epoxy putty harden before I sculpt in the bumps and burr as another step.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs009.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: boarhunter67 on December 12, 2007, 10:58:38 PM
Wow.  I can't wait to see how it turns out.  Thanks for the pics.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 10:55:34 AM
I mixed up some 2 part silicone putty and made a quick mold of the other burr.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs010.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 11:06:54 AM
I usually keep several different kinds of epoxy putty on hand and try to use the one that matches the lightest,base color of the rack.Sometimes I mix 2 different putties to get what I want.I used Sculp Epox for this one.I applied a base texture layer to the rack and textured it with modeling tools and brushes.This is just the base texture.I want this to get solid before I sculpt the bumps and apply the burr.At the same time,I pressed some of the Sculp Epox into the silicone burr molds.When the epoxy in the molds gets firm enough that I can pull it out without disturbing the detail,but still has some slight flex to it,I'll remove it from the mold and epoxy it to the rack.Notice I saved a small roll of the Sculp Epox as a reference sample so I can monitor it's hardness and flex so I know when to take my epoxy from the molds.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs011.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Uncle Harley on December 13, 2007, 11:24:33 AM
Awsome thread cant't wait to see the finished product!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 12:39:30 PM
I got the silicone from a place called Micro Mark tools.It takes some getting used to as it sets very fast and is only good for small projects.McKenzie sells a silicone putty and I'm going to try that soon as mine is running out.I let the Sculp Epox sit in the silicone molds for 1 1/2 hours.When I removed it,it was firm enough to keep the detail but still quite flexible and a little tacky.It was tacky enough,as was the base layer,that all I had to do was press it in place and go around the edge with a modeling tool,pressing it down.No glueing.There was about 1/2" of real burr there,the rest was rebuilt.To make the mold,fill with epoxy and apply the burr to the rack,took not much more than 5 minutes.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs012.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: 300savage on December 13, 2007, 01:03:06 PM
Very nice thanks for sharing
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Curt on December 13, 2007, 01:55:35 PM
This is great Jim. Thanks for schooling us. This was a major repair in my book
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Pascal on December 13, 2007, 03:06:40 PM
Great tutorial, thanks.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jared Adams on December 13, 2007, 03:21:24 PM
Jim b. what a fantastic thread!!!! This is the fun kind of taxidermy..Could you also post the stained or painted part of the antlers? thanks again Jim great work!  Jared
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 06:05:39 PM
I have to tell you,this part wasn't fun.All the bumps were rolled out,applied and blended in individually,using a small modeling tool and brush.The other antler was my reference.I'll include the coloring later.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs014.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Josh K on December 13, 2007, 06:08:27 PM
Wow that increadible
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: coal39 on December 13, 2007, 06:17:53 PM
Great job Jim! but you never surprise me with your ability.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: buckslayer on December 13, 2007, 06:25:52 PM
that is amazing cant wait to see the finished product
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jared Adams on December 13, 2007, 07:06:03 PM
WOWWW!!!!   That is some incredible attention to detail! I can see how that might not be the most fun in the world, looks just a LITTLE time consuming..LOL  Ther are some super talented taxi artists on this website. Keep it coming Jim!! Jared
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Frank from PAA on December 13, 2007, 07:10:09 PM
Jim thank you very much for sharing. I have done a little of this, but not to the extent of your project. What a fantastic job. Thanks for the play by play and explanation. Frank
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 08:46:26 PM
Just a word about "staining" and coloring antlers.I very seldom wipe a paint or stain on and then wipe it off the high spots.Sometimes this works very well.I view every rack as an individual and they are all different to some extent.Some racks,especially elk and mule deer have darker coloring on the high areas and the grooves and low spots are the light base color.Some racks have some of both.If I am repairing a rack,the rack itself is my reference and I paint my repair to match the rest of the existing rack-whatever that takes.This picture is of part of the unbroken side of this rack.Notice how the low areas are lighter colored.Even most of the bumps are dark.The only place the bumps are light tipped is on the front of the rack from brow tine to burr and a little of the burr is highlighted in front only.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs019.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 08:57:17 PM
As I said,I seldom use the wipe on-wipe off technique.I use artist's acrylic tube paints like Liquatex and apply them with a bristle artist brush,Scotch Brite pad,paper towel,rag,toothbrush,whatever it takes to match the existing rack.Sometimes the paint is thinned with water,sometimes from the tube,sometimes" dry-brushed.In this case I was just able to use an artist bristle brush and paint straight from the tube.The main color was raw umber and that's the most commonly used.I tinted over top a little with burnt umber in the darker areas.I highlighted a few bumps in the front of the rack by wiping over them with a small piece of 400 grit sandpaper.This is where the proper colored putty underneath,comes into play.Notice some of the lower areas between the bumps is a little lighter than the darkest coloration.This is the finished repair.(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs016.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Uncle Harley on December 13, 2007, 09:02:54 PM
BRAVO!!!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: mk on December 13, 2007, 09:07:15 PM
jim- do you put a clear sealer coat over the painted areas so the paint doesnt rub off?  nice post.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 09:12:59 PM
Here is a closer picture of the repair.Remember,sometimes complicated putty jobs need to be done in 2 or 3 steps,letting one harden before starting the next layer of detail.This is kind of an advanced job but the techniques will be helpful on the simpler jobs too.It is just a matter of looking at you reference(the rack itself) and experiment to find the technique that produces the texture or color you are trying to replicate.I do some experimenting on almost every rack,to get things to match on that individual rack.I also think it is very important to build in as strong a structure as possible when attaching tines and rack pieces.Wires don't get it for me.I've had to fix too many of other taxidermists repairs because the didn't put strong enough rods in and epoxy them properly.Remember,customers and their family members will be manhandling these things.If you do your repairs well,someone,someday will be handling it and won't know that it was broken.As gruelling as it was to do this once,I'd sure hate to do the same one twice.Now go shoot up some racks and have fun!(http://i10.photobucket.com/albums/a140/jbrandenburg/AntlerRepairs017.jpg)
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Uncle Harley on December 13, 2007, 09:13:40 PM
jim- do you put a clear sealer coat over the painted areas so the paint doesnt rub off?  nice post.

I don't know about Jim, but I use Krylon #1311 with great results!!!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 13, 2007, 09:37:54 PM
MK, I don't usually seal it.The paint is pretty durable,close to as durable as the natural staining on the rack and the putty underneath is the same color as the base color of the rack.If it gets dinged,it will look like any other part of the rack that gets dinged.I should say that when I repair antelope horns or sheep horns,I first color the putty to match the color of the horn.Same thing,if the horn gets scuffed,there's no blaring light spot,it just looks like any other part of the horn.Normal handling won't affect the paint at all.I definitely don't want to spray anything on that will give it the slightest sheen that the rack wouldn't normally have.Even some of the flat sprays sometimes impart a slight sheen.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jared Adams on December 13, 2007, 10:04:22 PM
Thanks Jim, excellent job!!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: bulldog4949 on December 13, 2007, 10:19:01 PM
AWESOME!!!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: rnviper3 on December 13, 2007, 10:22:51 PM
excellent job Jim.  great post and tuturial.  thank you for sharing with us. 
bob
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: nmtaxi on December 13, 2007, 11:28:15 PM
Thank you Jim.  Great tutorial.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Scott H. on December 14, 2007, 05:18:47 AM
AWESOME JOB JIM !!!!!!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: B Jones on December 14, 2007, 07:29:07 AM
Nice work Jim.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: marshell-with-an-e on December 14, 2007, 08:16:42 AM
Jim,
 The pictures and information should help a lot of folks feel like tackling a project like this, please share with us your pricing on a project like this? Thanks.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 14, 2007, 12:48:29 PM
Pricing on this, like every other project has got to be based on 1.The wage you want to make per hour 2.Percentage of profit you want,over your wage. 3.YOUR overhead cost per hour 4.Your material cost + profit X hours of labor in the project.You should never base your price on what someone else charges.It should be based solely on what your cost-overhead is and what you want to make and every project should be priced the same way.I here too often:" What should I charge for...?" No one can tell you what you should charge.That has to be figured out on an individual basis.You should have an hourly figure determined for your shop work." A more appropriate question would be: " What would be the average number of hours it would take to complete X project?" Multiply that times YOUR shop rate.I don't mean to give you the runaround but figure it like this,this project too about 2/3 the time it would take to mount a deer head,start to finish.Take a deer head price,deduct most of the material cost X 2/3.A lot of customers would never pay this much.I would let them keep a 2 piece rack to commemorate their bad shooting,and move on to the next project.You have to get paid for what you do.You can bet your customer insists on it where he works and probably gets his money quicker than we often do.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Curt on December 14, 2007, 02:13:19 PM
Oh my Gosh!!!!! Jim that is a wonderful job... This is the stuff I love and keeps me wanting to get better and better.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: boarhunter67 on December 14, 2007, 11:00:26 PM
Just out of curiosity, what do you charge the customer for repairs of that magnitude?
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 15, 2007, 10:16:12 AM
Read my reply above.I price antler repairs strictly by the hour.That's the same rate that I use to figure mounting lifesize or deerheads.Too many people are concerned what others charge and each individual should be basing his price SOLEY on his own costs and circumstances.I can't emphasize this enough.The project above was done for another taxidermist and his customer hasn't been billed yet so I'm not going to publish here what he is paying me.It was worth doing and if it weren't,I just couldn't have done it.Like I said,many customers couldn't or wouldn't pay enough to justify doing such a project.You have to let them walk.There's too much work out there.Sorry to not answer your question directly but hope this at least makes sense.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: ccook63 on December 15, 2007, 10:51:57 AM
Thank's for posting the pictures are definitely worth a thousand words but I can only think of one outstanding
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Ruhs Wildlife Artistry on December 15, 2007, 01:40:29 PM
Thanks for the great post.  Many great tips on antler repair.  It is an unbelievably good repair.  Great work.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Manny on December 15, 2007, 03:51:46 PM
GREAT WORK !!!

Thanks for sharing
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: RoyalOaksTaxidermy on December 17, 2007, 01:35:26 AM
Thank you so much for sharing this with us all :) I myself have an antler in to repair, it was shot in the antler bur and literally blew the antler off. I am going to use your technique.  The antler Looks great and you sure cant tell it was every broken LOL
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Trophy Specialist on December 17, 2007, 05:59:23 PM
Looks like I might learn something from this thread.  Thanks. 

How much do you charge for a repair like this?
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Jim B on December 17, 2007, 06:15:43 PM
Now thats funny right there.I don' care who you are!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: JohnSWA on December 17, 2007, 07:33:06 PM
That was an awesome tutorial!  Thank you so much for sharing your talent!
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Chasha on January 04, 2008, 11:54:32 PM
Again, Thanks for sharing - the pictures were GREAT.  Makes me feel a little better about tackling a repair myself.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: 2/S Taxidermy on January 29, 2009, 12:39:52 PM
WOW, this was a real learning experience awesome job
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: BobF on February 01, 2009, 10:22:40 PM
Truly amazing, thanks for sharing.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Matt on February 07, 2009, 09:49:15 PM
Very nice Jim, I wouldn't expect anything different from a talented artist. Thank you for taking the time to share.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: bluestem taxidermy on March 24, 2011, 08:27:11 AM
just got a mule deer in that had his horn shot off almost exactly.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: aboutpostal on December 31, 2012, 12:24:49 PM
Very interesting, gonna have to try this on one of my own.
Title: Re: Antler Repair
Post by: Hook and Reel on January 02, 2013, 06:59:01 PM
X-ceptional work there!