Deer rack reconstruction

Submitted by pittenger on 09/09/2003. ( )

Have a very large buck mounted. Customer shot buck with one of its racks broke off below the brow tine. He would like for me to fix it as best as posible. He knows i can only guess what it looked like. What do i use. Should i order a repoduction rack and try to tap it in or build it with some type of compound. Help needed please.

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Did you check the archives

This response submitted by George on 09/09/2003. ( )

I know that ones in there a bunch of times and all the current methods are listed. Click that orange "SEARCH" icon and type "rebuilding antlers"

It Can Be Done...

This response submitted by Matt P on 09/09/2003. ( )

This happened to my dad years ago before I got in to this taxidermy stuff. He's one of those guys been working construction his whole life and can fix anything, "he thinks"... anyway he killed a deer with this same problem, broken tine. If i remember correctly he made a small hole in the tip of the break, put a wire in there to about the length of the should be tine. Then used ordinary auto bondo and reconstructed a tine. Although I dont remember him using a mold or form or anything, i can't imagine him not using something to get it close to the shape needed. I guess you could wrap a layer of plastic wrap and then foil around the other tine to get hollowed out shape then flex it carefully the other way to get opposite desired shape. you could spray pam or something in there to keep the bondo from sticking. Well I know he did this next, before the bondo hardened completely he took a hard bristled old paint brush and put some kindof deep grain on it. This makes the bondo too grainy looking, so to you sand it down some, fine sand paper. then to finish it take acetone and a rag and wipe the bondo portion only, try not to hit the real portion. the acetone will clean the bondo, but more importantly it will "melt" the hard grain down and make it look exactly like the real antler. Then I want to say he used a stain to get the color right and gloss, but not too much. He still has the mount and it looks great, can't tell the difference. Since you are a working taxidermist I imagine you have some kindof artistic ability, shouldn't be too hard for you. there may be an easier way to do it, but this is just another idea that i have seen work. Good luck and post how you fixed the problem.

Matt P

shed antlers

This response submitted by Ector on 09/09/2003. ( )

Whit pratically all the antlers broken you can use a shed antler that looks like the broken antler (more i the mass, lengt and type of curvature of the main beam, texture of surface) that color and number of tines, fix at original the new pices, take the new antlers to mache the original for number and shape of tine than same work for the color if you need.
Looks hard but whit a little of work you can found a shed wery close at the origial, maybe whit a points more or less (but many deer have assimmetric but typical racks like 4x5, 5x6 or 4x6!) or a little bleached,and the work is more easy.There are a web site that have a tip-to-tip istruction whit lots of pic but can't remember the links(go at, there are a lots of how-to links here maybe also this...)

OH, So that's how you do it?

This response submitted by George on 09/09/2003. ( )

Bet the archives don't have those two unique methods over half a dozen times at least. And guess what? THEY AREN'T THE ONES MOST OF US USE. Geez, Ken, such a waste of your resources in having those silly little archives.

For George, yeah you!

This response submitted by Matt P on 09/10/2003. ( )

George, I have been reading archives on top of archives about everything and it has come apparent that yes you do know what your talking about, you are probably good at your work. With that said, you come across as a dick, most of the time, and judging by the "ARCHIVES" you've been a dick awhile. Look, yes there are great ideas in there, but they are there because people help each other, giving more diverse idea's instead of constantly yelling at them to search the archives. Even though they should, you don't have to go through every single post of these people and tell them that, I get tired of reading "check the archive's" to be honest with you. Just don't respond to them, and i'll bet they will go searchin'. I'm just saying, not everyone is the freakin' taxidermy guru like you. Either answer there questions or just don't.

hows this, Matt?

This response submitted by Bill Yox on 09/10/2003. ( )

Sure, we could stop suggesting the archives, most people just want the quick fix answer right away, rather then study over all known techniques stored in the archives. But instead, not only wont many of you bother with the archives, to make matters worse, someone will go ahead and type in another answer, making the archives less accessable because you again dont have to go to them. True, it also adds another method to the archives. But have you read some of the alternative methods posted lately, after the archives HAVE been exhausted? Personally I dont care if a guy picks up one of these less then accurate methods and fails because of it, but Id still feel bad not suggesting the archives first. I gotta laugh at how some of you guys worry over Georges gruff tone. Hasnt anyone ever heard a stern tone before?


This response submitted by George on 09/10/2003. ( )

Does this mean I take you off the Christmas Card list too. At least you used a masculine adjective, and for that I should be thankful I guess. And thanx for using a real name at least, but as I've said before, you can call me anything that makes you feel better, but when I get to be a liar, please stop me then. I assure you, I'll apologize for that and admit my mistake. Now I just hope you feel a little better.


This response submitted by George on 09/10/2003. ( )

Of all those methods listed there, your's with Bondo is the very worst. Bondo is simply fiberglass resin, hardner, and a phenolic microballon material as filler. It has a tendency to slough off or down and unless worked quickly with a shaper, becomes brittle and cracks. You probably won't find that in the archives until next week, but there's good suggestions in there whether it comes from a dick like me or a renowned champion like Bill Yox. If you aren't very careful, you might even learn something.

Try this method

This response submitted by Ray on 09/10/2003. ( )

I;ll just throw in my 2cents while I;m at Not that it matters. but I;ve learnt a somewhat simple way in reproduceing an antler and it;s worked very well for me, sure you could buy a high dollar pair of reproduction antlers or try this . Simply by using a wire coat hanger and drill out a hole into the horn butt approx 1/4 to half inch use the wire and eppoxy it into the antler but, bend wire to form as a mainbeam. once mainbeam is set up and dried. i use more of a smaller guaged wire and proceed up the beam making the other tines establishing the other tines oppoxy them into place . or hot glue wich is much faster. after you have these in place then begin rolling up magic sculpt. and rolling it arround the wire. do you see where i;m getting at now. simply by useing the magic sculpt. you can make an entire antler and by useing a clay modeling tool the options are endless with this stuff. Im nothing of a pro but i can honestly say i have made a few very respectful looking antlers and fixed a few broken tines with this method and once dry a simple application of potasium permaganate dipped in some water and rubbed on and worked to the shade you desire workes very ,very well for staining the antler. best of luck Ray


This response submitted by Bill Yox on 09/10/2003. ( )

I know what youre thinking and Im not saying nothing! Hahahaha!

finally some good info...

This response submitted by Matt P on 09/11/2003. ( )

Now that's some good info about the bondo, I didn't know that, and niether did my dad, he's not a taxidermist. That's the kindof stuff most of us need, because we aren't "masters of the universe" like you and Bill Yox. don't get me wrong though, I think you guys are very good at your work, I just think sometimes you get a bit "mightier than thou" because your good. Oh yeah and if someone post a way to do something as they now it best, dont just tell them "hell no, dont do that, that sucks". I appreciate the apology, as i apologize. I realize I am being a dick too, but I felt the point was worth it.

Peace out,


This response submitted by Bill Yox on 09/11/2003. ( )

I call you Matty, as my buddy Matt is affectionately known as that by me. Anyway, the one big point you assume but are wrong on...neither me or George is a master of anything, taxidermy included. Why is it that someone admires something or someone, puts that person on a pedestal, then accuses that person of being (take your pick here) God Almighty, icon, expert, master, etc...I tell anyone wholl listen Im just as much of a gomer as George is. We just have learned some ways that will help you cut the corners in the experince neighborhood. I dont know how else to type in a better alternative method. If I DO post a better way, it implies that all previously posted methods suck. If I dont bother posting, Im asked why I didnt respond with the better method. Try not to read anything extra into our typed in words here. Some of us actually do this stuff as a professional courtesy and not to inflate our shallow egos, believe it or not. Wanna try answering my email for a day or two? Im definitely not such a butthead then! Same goes for George. Matt, we are both with you, so relax and read our words as though we were all reads better that way.

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