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Beginners, Training & Tutorials => Tutorials => Topic started by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 05:11:29 PM

Title: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 05:11:29 PM
I often hear comments on decisions to dorsal cut or ventral cut small game for mounting.  My particular choice is: "None of the Above"  I hate sewing as much as I hate a seam showing so to reduce that, I figured I'd eliminate as much as possible.  Hopefully, in the next few pictures of a gray squirrel, you'll be able to see how that's done.

Because suppliers don't make the form like you need it, the first thing to do is to alter it to fit your needs.  Don't be afraid to whack it apart.  Just as long as you keep the anatomy intact, you can do anything you want with it.  Here, I'm marking where joints would be on a live animal and cutting the form to alter the legs.  That means undercutting the form so that anatomical accuracy can be maintained.The undercut will leave a small gap that will be filled with foam.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 05:18:46 PM
Now that the back legs have been altered to fit the log, you'll need to cut the front legs free.  The manikin is marked along the joints again and both front legs are removed.

The squirrel is cut from the toes on one foot, across the anus, to the toes of the other foot.  Carefully opening the incision, you can cut the anus free and skin the tail out.  Once this is done, just peel the skin down the squirrel.  Care must be taken in removing the feet and toes.  The dewclaw pad on the front feet MUST be cut off as you skin or you'll tear the hide.  When you get to the head, find the ear butts and cut them free from against the skull.  If you don't, you can have a huge hole to sew up inside that ear and it will never look as good as it might have.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 05:30:52 PM
With small game, I elect to DP them OR, as in this case, soak them in denatured alcohol.  I chose it because of the time I was going to need in pulling this tutorial off.  Denatured alcohol will lock the hide and hair in quickly.  You choose the method you prefer.

Here the hide has been treated.  (Note:  I cut off the top and bottom jaws with the teeth still in the bones.  This will require them carefully being flushed under and around.  To accommodate these teeth, I cut away the nose and Dremeled out where the bottom jaw and the top jaw piece would need to set inside the manikin).  I coated the tail heavily with hide paste.  This is essential in getting it to slip on quickly and easiily.  Don't stretch it out.  Measure the length of the real tail bone using a fine wire if you have to, but stretching it out will make it look moth-eaten when mounted.

Next, the front toes and feet are clayed and the front legs are installed.  Be SURE you don't mix them up.  I put a bit of paste on the forearm and leg only just to help the skin slide on. 

Next, I mix epoxy paste for attaching the legs permanently.  I use Epo-Grip #30 simply because it does not run or drip.  I place a small dollop about the size of a marble inside the "V" on the form so that I don't smear it alll over the hair while I work. (Note:  I had installed the eyes earlier using Apoxie putty as I wasn't planning on tucking the eyelids.  This keeps me from messing up clay work during this next step.)  I shove the head of the manikin up inside the skin and push it through  Once I have it inside, I use a small brush and put a bit of hide paste up inside the tubed squirrel so I can taxi the skin easier.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tom King on June 08, 2008, 05:39:06 PM
Nice Tutorial George!!!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 05:49:52 PM
Moving the legs under the skin, I taxi them until the "V" joints lock together.  I align them insuring that they're seated all the way down to get the epoxy on both surfaces.  Once I can feel the form joint smooth out, I use two 3 inch insect pins to lock each leg in place. These pins will stay in place until the mount dries.  Then I can cut the heads off and tamp them down into the form.

Once the legs are secrure, I pull the artificial tail (I use John David Ellzey's gray squirrel tails) into the precut hole in the form.  The clay will squish out and I can shape it to eliminate the seam where it joins.  The tail wire is bent back into the form to lock it down.

Now the sewing begins.  I start on the "hard" leg first.  Usually one is bent radically, and this bend can make it a bit "testy" to get the hide pulled up into those slots.  There's a lot to be said about saving the best for last.  Insure that your hide DOES pull up around those bends.  I use 14# test Fireline Neutral color in single strand and it hides extremely well.  When you get to the anus, I find it easier to stop and tie it off so that you can be reasonably assured that the hide will be centered.  If there are any physical anomolies (such as penis and testicles) this is a good time to work those.  I formed them out of regular  potters clay.  For the toes, I roll out spaghetti sized rolls of Critter Clay and put them in the freezer.  When I go to mount the feet, I simply insert the frozen roll up into the toe all the way to the claw and snap it off. "You won't have to worry about injecting anything using this method.

I place the squirrel on the log and I use a couple large pins to hold the body stable during the next steps.  I pin each toe individually, insuring that the claw is down ON the log.  Squirrels don't surf or snowboard so their claws are what hold them to a tree.  This takes a bit of time, but you should be charging for that time anyway.   Then I bend the tail in the pose I want.  If you didn't overstretch the skin, your tail will be full and fluffy.  I back brush it and get each individual hair separate if possible.  Then I take the cheapest "Heavy Hold" hairspray I can find and lightly mist if from about 2 feet away.  This will prevent you from glopping the hair together.  Let it dry 10-15 minutes and give it a second mist coat.  Repeat this 2 or 3 more times.  This locks the hair in place and when the skin finally dries, the squirrel's tail won't look like a wet rats, but will be fluffy and full.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 06:02:10 PM
Here comes the best part.  If you fill that maw with clay you can push the nose/top jaw and bottom jaw into it.  Tuck the lips behind the teeth.  Any excess clay will have oozed out. This clay is necessary for forming the bridge of the nose and filling up the face around the mouth.  Install the bottom teeth with the top teeth over them and press down.  This pulls the nose down along with it and you can work the clay under the nose cartilage so you won't have any shrinkage there.  (Note:  I didn't cover the work I'd done on the ears.  I split them all the way and used Apoxie to form the ear cartilage liner. The ears were complete before I shoved the form into the skin tube.   A dollop of clay put into the ear canal opening on the form allowed me to press those ears down and form earbutts.)  I adjust the eyelids over the hardened Apoxie and keep after them for a few days until the skin dries.

The mount is hung on the wall to dry. It MUST be watched closely because the denatured alcohol is harsh on the skin and it can dry akilt if not monitored until dry.

A SPECIAL THANKS TO GLEN CONLEY.  I had all the pictures but the files were too large and wouldn't load properly.  I zip filed them to him and he took each photo and downsized them so that people with dial up could see them without burning their hard drives up.  Thank you Glen.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: LionHeart on June 08, 2008, 06:17:29 PM
WoW, thanks a lot George, this is good stuff   ;) .


LionHeart
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tom King on June 08, 2008, 06:38:56 PM
I just want to start by stating that this is a VERY OUTSTANDING tutorial George(thumbs up) but I believe it would be more practical to go with a belly incision on this pose. 1.The incision is hidden against the driftwood and 2. If the form is a little larger in the girth it would not need to be altered...............The tube cut in my opinion would be better used on a sitting squirrel.I just mounted a fox squirrel climbing and the girth was a little larger so it worked out great.I removed legs on one side and reattached them when I mounted him.Nice job George!!! The squirrel looks nice!!!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: ChipD. on June 08, 2008, 07:09:19 PM
George, When I grow up I want to be just like you.  ;D ;). That was a great tutorial.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: [email protected] on June 08, 2008, 07:30:38 PM
George...you have a stalker.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tom King on June 08, 2008, 08:30:27 PM
What?He's a stalker because he wants to be like George? LOL.............
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Kevin Haskins on June 08, 2008, 09:07:30 PM
Great Post George!  Post like this is what makes this site so sucessful.  Geat Job !   
Thanks again !!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 08, 2008, 09:10:04 PM
Tom, you're correct, but my first consideration on all small game is the tube cut.  If impractical, I go on to something else.  The ventral cut would require that I either split those front legs or cut them off the form anyway, so the tube decision stood that test FOR ME.  As far as the form having a larger girth, I don't allow that to happen.  John David has a wonderful selection of all shapes and sizes  and he has one that will fit the squirrel I'm working on.  To me, it's like the back side of a fish being finished.  Sure, no one will see and but I know it's there and it bugs me. I simply hate a gap in a seam and just don't have them.  I've seen hides stapled and superglued underneath and I just don't do that either.  In a few years when he gets tired of cleaning the dust out of the fur and tail and he grabs it and pulls it off the log, I know that his first words won't be, "Why that cheap SOB didn't even bother to sew the hide together underneath."
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tom King on June 08, 2008, 09:17:19 PM
Nothing wrong with that.I'm probably one of the few taxidermist in my area that finishes both sides of the heads and tails on my fish that hang  against the wall but I am guilty of a seam that doesn't fit perfect on the opposite size at times.I know that tutorial will help many.......GJ..............
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Redwolf on June 09, 2008, 01:16:32 PM
thanks george.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Josh K on June 09, 2008, 06:19:34 PM
looking good Gorge, What I want to see is a lying down bobcat done that way..... :P I still like dorsal, sorry. Josh
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on June 09, 2008, 06:30:41 PM
Josh, I do DEER that way, so a bobcat would be a walk in the park.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: EJ on June 09, 2008, 06:53:45 PM
Dang George!...That thing was still RAW!...Heck if nothing else you could of ran a little heat across it? ;D
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: brushwolf on June 11, 2008, 04:30:49 PM
 on doing th mouth the way you did it can you get some pics on doing the mouth
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: grantgav on June 14, 2008, 08:49:36 PM
Thanks George for sharing, great tutorial and very nice looking mount.
Cheers from downunder.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Monkey Man on July 01, 2008, 11:32:45 PM
Thanks George for one of the most outstanding tutorials I have seen on any subject. 
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: rnviper3 on July 02, 2008, 12:01:50 AM
great tutorial George. your knowledge has graced this site for as long as i have been here.  i have learned many tips from you.   i also do most of my small critters with a tube cut and i love it.   this tutorial is great for the beginner, and veteran alike.  we learn something new from such little things.  i too would like to see your method of attaching the teeth and your mouth work. 
again thanks for being such a huge help to everyone out here on the net. 
bob
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Vryn on July 03, 2008, 11:06:02 PM
Hey, how did you get the squirrel to hang on the log? I don't see any wires through the paws, or holes in the wood. Thanks for the great tutorial.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on July 03, 2008, 11:25:39 PM
Vryn, read that paragraph right above the picture of the rolled Critter Clay on Saran Wrap.  It tells you what I do.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Vryn on July 04, 2008, 07:54:28 PM
"I place the squirrel on the log and I use a couple large pins to hold the body stable during the next steps."

Sorry, didn't realize that those pins stay in forever.  :)
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on July 04, 2008, 07:56:37 PM
That's what I do for commercial work.  I've taken those 4/5 inch drywall screws and attached some small game, like rabbits, muskrats, and prairie dogs through the wood as well.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Hoytman on July 08, 2008, 01:54:48 PM
Good info george, I used this method on a skunk. Only sewing was about 1" behind each front leg and from rear heal to heal.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: utsiishi on September 10, 2008, 09:51:46 AM
Great tutorial George. you said you used alchohol instead of DP.  Ive been using DP and a fox that was skun and then frozen. after taking it out and defrosted then DP. i tried it on the maniken and found it needed altering. The skin was slipped on and off a few times before i got it right. I grabbed the skin for the final fit and noticed a big chunk of hair slipped. I would have thought that the DP would have prevented the slipping. My question is this. Could i soak a fox in the alchohol to set the hair then DP and mount as normal. thanks george.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: utsiishi on September 10, 2008, 09:52:55 AM
ps...is metholated spirits denatured alchohol
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on September 10, 2008, 01:34:01 PM
Methylated spirits is one type of denatured alcohol (many chemicals can be used to "denature" ethanol, but methylated spirits is ethanol diluted with 10% methanol).

After the fact use of denatured alcohol is like shutting the barn door after the horse is out.  The heat of your actions spoiled the epidermal layer and I'm not familiar with anything that will work on it now. Sorry.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Leslie J. on September 10, 2008, 08:05:10 PM
Thanks a bunch for this tutorial George.  I missed it the first time you posted it.  Will be a great help when I finally get around to mounting that ermine I've got. :)
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: utsiishi on September 11, 2008, 05:31:03 AM
thanks george, but i wasnt trying to save the skin as i had another. What i was wondering is could i give a fox or cat a soak in alchohol to set the hair then dry preserve...cheers :)
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on September 11, 2008, 06:34:19 AM
If you "give it a soak" it WILL set the hair but you won't need DP.  The denatured alcohol is a "pickle" treatment and your hide will shrink a bit and need to be restretched.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: DWC Taxidermy on September 11, 2008, 08:19:05 AM
Thanks for the info George.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: utsiishi on September 11, 2008, 09:15:53 PM
okie dokie mate.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Jim Tucker on September 13, 2008, 03:05:35 PM
Good job.  I too like to use tube skinned mammals whenever I can.

However I prefer to cut the form in Half at the waist rather than cut off the front legs.  Sometimes you have cut the head off as well and insert it through the mouth.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: bobbyspang on September 15, 2008, 10:30:40 PM
Good job!  Thanks for the info, great for beginners like me ;D
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: rizzo856 on September 24, 2008, 04:28:39 PM
Thanks for the instructions.I  am just starting this hobby. I did my first critter like that  but did not cut the arms off and just cut wedges out and I hate to say and i wish it came out better but the kid I did it for loved it. Thanks again i will keep your info in mind the next time I do a small mammal.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: utsiishi on September 26, 2008, 03:37:42 PM
hey george ol mate, when you say you chopped off the top jaw and bottom, did you leave then attached to the skin or like you would a pig jaw...silly question i know, but im only learning...  ;D
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on September 26, 2008, 10:44:11 PM
Yes I did.  I then skinned the jawbone and teeth out to the lip so that I could get the DP (or denatured alcohol in this case) out to the skin as well as clean any meat out of there.  I hollowed pockets out in the foam face and fillle them with clay. When I put the skin on, I pushed the pieces of jaw down into the clay.  This squished the clay out and allowed me to form it under the skin and give it a natural puffiness of the lips and nose of the squirrel as you see in the final picture.  It also allows you to set BOTH sets of teeth properly.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: jm94sniper on November 23, 2008, 12:30:27 AM
WOW!! this is what i have been looking for...thanks for posting...
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tyler J on December 16, 2008, 12:47:11 AM
nice job george
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Triple R on December 16, 2008, 05:14:42 PM
 how long did you let the squirrel soak in the denatured alcohol
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on December 16, 2008, 05:35:35 PM
15 to 20 minutes.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Bobbi Meyer on December 17, 2008, 09:56:08 AM
OK George, I'm confused.
you JUST used denatured alcohol on the tree rat?
Isn't that just pickling it and not actually tanning or preserving it?
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on December 17, 2008, 10:00:27 AM
ABSOLUTELY, Bobbi. You know, just like Krowtann.  LMAO  That's all that denatured alcohol does.  It locks down the hair and pickles the skin.  I don't usually use that method as I prefer DP, but like Ron's "new earliners", sometimes the old methods work just as well.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Bobbi Meyer on December 17, 2008, 10:53:50 AM
so basically you are mounting a pickled skin?
wouldn't it shrink or rot?
I know, dumb questions.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on December 17, 2008, 11:36:22 AM
Nope, it's PICKLED.  It will likely last just as long as a DP'd or a tanned one would.  I don't know why that question would come up when I've asked the same things about that other product I've mentioned.  "Pickle Tans" DON'T have a good history, but since it's just a tree rat that the tail will likely suffer irreparabe damage in just a few years with or without tanning, I don't see any problem with it.  Years ago, that was the standard method of treating small game.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Bobbi Meyer on December 17, 2008, 12:25:01 PM
I just had to ask since I remember you and Terry going round and round about denatured alcohol, and how it wasn't a tan..etc..etc..

I thought "Wow, has George turned over a new leaf." or what!!!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tom King on December 18, 2008, 09:03:08 AM
ABSOLUTELY, Bobbi. You know, just like Krowtann.  LMAO  That's all that denatured alcohol does.  It locks down the hair and pickles the skin.  I don't usually use that method as I prefer DP, but like Ron's "new earliners", sometimes the old methods work just as well.

denatured alcolol doesnt come near what Krowtan does and if you believe it does then youve lost your mind or maybe the brain is a bit pickled.................or just plain old age lol.........
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on December 18, 2008, 09:32:57 AM
Well, Tom, I suppose we're all entitled to our opinions.  I don't use denatured alcolhol and only did it for the reasons I explained.  This was a TUTORIAL IN MOUNTING A TUBED SKINNED MAMMAL, not on tanning or those products pretending to be tans.  We have that in another post on here.  And "NO", I'm not sending either of you T-shirts.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Bobbi Meyer on December 18, 2008, 09:46:18 AM
oh George...I was gonna ask for an x-large cause I like them loose, but I guess Santa ain't comin this year.
OK, I understand the DA was just for this tutorial...gotcha
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Tom King on December 18, 2008, 10:38:29 AM
George you know me..............when ever I see a remark on Krowtan,Im goin to respond ..........no matter what post it is on...................Send me a T-shirt.................ill wear it.....................
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on December 18, 2008, 11:07:16 AM
LMAO Tom, and you know I'm the same way with JRTS.  And I'm not sending you the T-shirt.  IN MY OPINION, it doesn't apply.  LOL
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: matt wittman on February 24, 2009, 02:38:36 AM
nice job.......if we had squirrels in australia i would deffanatly give this one a go
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: kazo on February 24, 2009, 03:37:46 AM
Thanks for the tutorial George,you just made my day great.Didint a fox could be don the same way.Thanks again. :D
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: NellieSusan on July 22, 2009, 07:48:17 PM
BRILLIANT.

Thank you.

Top tutor, George.

Thank you.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: black wolf on August 10, 2009, 08:41:11 PM
great post
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Stevenony on August 19, 2009, 01:44:13 AM
Thanks for this tutorial.  I just shot my first taxidermy project this afternoon.  I have been wanting to work on a ground squirrel and was able to get one that was in my chicken pen this afternoon.  Since this is my first (read practice) squirrel I will be trying the DA and see what happens.  I wont be able to purchase a form so I will be trying to do it the way Ive seen in the old books.  Thanks for your help.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: duckstuffer_99 on October 17, 2010, 07:24:38 PM
Very informative Mr. George!!!    I've been doing birds for years and want to try squirrells just for fun!! This will help immensely
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: renjam33 on May 03, 2011, 11:45:34 PM
Thanks for taking the time George ;D
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: njwhitetail on August 10, 2011, 11:11:31 AM
This is great, love the idea with leaving the jaws attached!!  Thanks
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Sportsmans Choice on December 27, 2011, 04:27:27 PM
George can you give us more details on denatured alcohol part, I mean how long do you soak etc?
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on December 27, 2011, 06:06:06 PM
It's in there someplace already, but 15-20minutes is more than sufficient.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: renjam33 on April 18, 2012, 11:02:12 AM
just wondering if you have to split the tail to skin it out?....I'm thinking the thing will not invert without splitting.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on April 18, 2012, 02:51:28 PM
Nope, no splitting the tail.  That's the beauty of denatured alcohol.  Simply fill a syringe with it and inject the tail void.  Let it set with the hide in the denatured alcohol for 15-20 minutes, squeeze dry, tumble and mount.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: renjam33 on April 18, 2012, 10:40:49 PM
thank you George.....got my first tree rat under my belt today using your techniques. Went pretty smooth.
Jamie
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: CatFisher89 on July 23, 2012, 09:08:04 PM
What size blade would you suggest for splitting the ears?
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Jen D. on July 26, 2012, 10:28:40 AM
This tutorial is great. I was just wondering a few things. Are you fleshing the skin? I tried doing that with my last one, and really, it is pretty laborous. But the pics here do not look like you did.

Also, wondering how to skin out the tail without splitting. Just invert it like the legs? This would be awesome if I can teach myself to do this, since splitting squirrel tails would be pretty unnecessary and work-adding.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on July 26, 2012, 11:03:48 AM
1) I use a Havel's #10 on EVERYTHING. TO ME the larger #22 gets dull too quick and I only use the tip of the blade anyway.

2)  Yes, the squirrel is fleshed.  It is NOT shaved as it makes no sense to do that. If a squirrel is skinned properly, there's little fleshing to be done. Some "shaker" muscle on the back and fatty tissue under the leg pits.  The face and earbutts get their own attention. When I'm done, I use a STIFF bird fleshing wheel to clean up any traces and to flesh the lips and nose areas.

3) NEVER - EVER split a squirrel's tail.  Skin it down to the base of the tail.  I use my thumbnail against my index finger to "pinch" the tail while pulling the squirrel away. The tail skin will begin to accordian up behind your fingers and will zip right off.  USE THE TAIL BONE to create a tail manikin as if you make it too long, the tail will look frizzy instead of full and fluffy.  There's little to no flesh to worry about inside the tail skin. I take a syringe and fill it with denatured alcohol to squirt the fluid down into the tail.  I don't punch any holes or wick the fluid through.  The alcohol will evaporate and be absorbed into the skin.

Squirrel tail hair is whorled.  If you split the tail, you can never get these patterns back.  Look closely at a live squirrel and see how the hairs set individually.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Jen D. on July 26, 2012, 11:26:11 AM
Thanks; this will help me immensely. I have done a few wrong (split) and really disliked my results. I am going to try one today without splitting, tube skinned.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: jimhow on July 26, 2012, 11:39:07 AM
George, what about DP'd squirrels?  Do you still inject DA down the tail? (Great tip BTW!)

George admittedly has big 'paws', if you can't do what he said for the tail, get a tail stripper or 2 dowels one one top, one under the tail bone, sqeeze together and pull like George mentioned.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on July 26, 2012, 05:44:23 PM
I use Bess Maid DP and it's very fine.  When I'm mounting them, I simply pour it down the tail tube.  I use a 12 gauge wire and tamp it a bit to insure it's down in there, then I turn it over, holding it by the tail tip, and jiggle the wire until the excess falls out.  Then mount.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Jen D. on July 26, 2012, 07:52:51 PM
Would it be a bad idea to use the rinehart paint-on cream? I had good results with it when I did a squirrel rug before, but the tail was split, and flat upon drying, since it was rugged.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on July 26, 2012, 08:00:04 PM
Using JRTS is fine as long as you salt first. And I don't have to tell you that afterwards it needs to be washed thoroughly and tumbled before mounting.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: jimhow on July 26, 2012, 09:30:51 PM
Thanks George.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Inari on August 01, 2012, 06:43:02 PM
Hi just wondering, where exactly do you cut off the jaws? I have been doing it on rats but on a squirrel, as the skull is larger, where would you recommend?
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on August 01, 2012, 08:00:58 PM
Right behind the teeth. Use a Dremel tool with a cutoff disk so that you don't shatter the teeth.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Inari on August 02, 2012, 07:01:48 AM
Alright thanks very much!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Gerry D. on January 04, 2013, 08:23:10 PM
Wow!  It sure pays off to do some queries in this forum.  This is a fantastic tutorial that George put together.  It's bookmarked on my computer now.  George, my hat's off to you with contributions like this.  Absolutely superbly done (particularly for us rookies).  Thank you!  Gerry
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Gerry D. on January 11, 2013, 10:00:49 AM
George,
  When repositioning legs (like the hind legs on this squirrel),  I see where you stated, (The undercut will leave a small gap that will be filled with foam.)  What foam filler do you use?

Thanks,
  Gerry
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on January 11, 2013, 10:50:31 AM
I buy mine from McKenzie.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: MVT on January 11, 2013, 11:43:09 AM
George,
  When repositioning legs (like the hind legs on this squirrel),  I see where you stated, (The undercut will leave a small gap that will be filled with foam.)  What foam filler do you use?

Thanks,
  Gerry
I want to add my thanks for a very informative and well done tutorial, it is very much appreciated.

To add to Gerry's question...for small gaps such as these, you can use gorilla glue. If you mist the surface with water before you apply it and mist it after you spread a little on each surface it has plenty of expansion to fill small gaps such as these. Quick and easy. It's activated by moisture so the more moisture you put on it the more it is going to expand and the quicker it will set up. 
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Gerry D. on January 11, 2013, 12:13:47 PM
THanks George.  I guess I'll have better luck finding it in the McKenzie catalog I have at home.  I couldn't find it on-line unless I'm looking for it under the wrong name "foam filler" or something generic like that.  I'll try the Gorilla glue tip too!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: Lizardfeathers on April 08, 2013, 10:26:33 PM
I literally just skinned my first tree rat a couple hours ago. I will defiantly will use your great advice on mounting it. I will have to wrap a body because my idea for a position is to crazy and unusual for trying to modify an existing form. It was a roadkill squirrel and there is a 1" x 2" bald spot on it's right hip. Basically it will be attached to a tree wall panel by it's hip (w/ the spot) and look like it's jumping to catch something or traveling from tree to tree. Again, thank you George for the great tutorial.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: miketruax on September 06, 2013, 09:00:37 PM


Sent from my XT907 using Ohub Campfire mobile app

Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: judyhoffman on January 28, 2014, 01:41:00 PM
Thanks George, This will help me so much since I just had a customer that wants a squirrel done. Grandkids 1st kill and I haven't done one before. Judy
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: EricM3182 on January 28, 2014, 01:59:35 PM
Marking.....Thanks George!
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: George Roof on February 20, 2014, 06:15:49 AM
You will have to decide which was is best for YOU. I'm a crappy seamstress and I try to think outside the box. I decide if cutting the firm will look better than cutting the hide or how to avoid having a visible seam. Only you can device what will work best for you. AS FOR ME, my very last option is a dorsal cut.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: BrookeSFD16 on February 20, 2014, 08:13:26 AM
I mounted this bobcat with a "case skinned" incision.  I attribute my success to Georges tutorial.  You may have to cut the form and assemble it in pieces,  but you will have no visible stitch lines. My assembly skills are better that my sewing skills, so for me the time it takes to cut and reassemble the form, is better time spent than trying to hide stitches.

All I had to cut on the form was the reaching arm. Inserted it first, then slid the rest of the form in. I will attempt to mount all lifesize small mammals this way in the future. Thanks again George!

(http://[URL=http://s244.photobucket.com/user/RandysPrize/media/Picforemail3_zps745ec391.jpg.html][IMG]http://i244.photobucket.com/albums/gg36/RandysPrize/Picforemail3_zps745ec391.jpg)[/URL][/IMG]
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: pinnacle on February 21, 2014, 10:08:25 AM
Great tutorial.
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: magicmick on February 22, 2014, 06:04:51 AM
As allways great work george thanks from everyone, YOUR THE MAN  :) THE KING OF TAXIDERMY..
Title: Re: Mounting a tube skinned small animal
Post by: crs on December 29, 2017, 10:28:20 PM
 :)