injecting or casting beaver feet ????
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Taxidermy.Net Forum  |  Taxidermy Discussion Categories  |  Lifesize Mammals  |  Topic: injecting or casting beaver feet ???? « previous next »
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codys trophy
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Location: decatur Illinois
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« on: January 17, 2012, 12:21:53 AM »

i have a 60 lbs beaver i am going to be mounting in a habitat seen with a black bear . i was wondering if there was a way to inject the hind feet on a beaver insteed of skining them out and if so how would i go about doing this and what would i use. does anybody know if they sell artificial feet or how to cast and mold then?
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ladyarcher726
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« Reply #1 on: January 17, 2012, 02:54:30 AM »

I would cast them.   (I've only done this once but I'll try to explain it, I saw this in a seminar last year).
Carefully skin the feet.
Take a cereal box and cut it to make a dam around the foot, leaving about an inch of space between the foot and the wall.
Mix up enough alginate (dental mold stuff) to fill the bottom inch of the mold. 
Gently press the foot in so that the bottom half of the toes are pressed in. 
Let alginate set, it only takes a minute or two.
Paint a light coat of dawn dish soap on the alginate.
Mix another batch of alginate and pour it on top of the foot, covering it by about an inch.
Let it kick.

Gently ease the top mold off and gently remove the foot.  Cut lengths of wire and lay them in each toe for strength.  Make a bondo resin mixture and pour it through the hole that the ankle made.  Once it kicks you'll have a replica of the foot, and the skin will be a perfect fit.

At least, that's what they said in the seminar!  I did this with my bear feet and they were pretty rough.  So I dremeled the seam off and cleaned up the rough spots, then I will fill and smooth the flaws with epoxy and do my test fit.
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Jim B
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« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2012, 09:58:35 PM »

You have to skin the feet,right down to each claw.You should also open up each web as you invert the foot.Ladyarcher is talking about how to cat a foot form.You can also just shape them with clay.The mannikin should have the whole foot minus the toes so you are just shaping the toes.Do not embalm the feet.
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boarhunter67
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« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2012, 10:48:19 AM »

So do you have to open the web to the end like lips and noses and ears or just until you can get to the last toe knuckle?
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George Roof
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« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2012, 11:40:30 AM »

WHY? A beaver's foot skins out one helluva lot easier than a squirrel or fox.  The webs open when you skin it with little or no effort.   I use Critter Clay and recreate the toes. Stay after it as it dries and you can open the webs naturally.
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Jim B
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« Reply #5 on: January 19, 2012, 10:27:20 AM »

Exactly.The web on a beaver's foot is like an ear or anything else.It should be split to get salt in there and for shaping later.
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