Hi Nancy.I have been reading your responses to questions in this forum and would like to ask if you use or have used caulking in your birds? Not so much as a hide paste but as a medium to replace the fat. If so how do you go about this. I have seen Frank newmyer use this method and would like to get more info. about it.Thanks
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Yes, I use caulking regularly [the cheap stuff from WalMart] although I try not to have big wads of it in any one area of the bird. My method of fat replacement is this: [we're talking competition methods now, folks]
The very large fat deposits, such as those around the base of the neck, around the legs, under the wings etc. I will sculpture into the form using foam to save weight. The caulking then does serve as a hide paste, but then since it replaces the layer of fat that was between the feather butts I suppose you could look at it either way. It also replaces the muscles that controlled the feather tracts so that you can lay them smooth or puff them up as you wish. I have not yet found a better way to absolutely control the feathers.
I have never had any problem with mildew or anything unusual, but then the layer of caulk is fairly thin. I shy away from large amounts of it precisely because it takes too long to dry and I don't want to look for trouble.
It also comes in handy on mergansers and other birds where the skin gets stretched and wont go back.
Other uses: a little bit around the "ankles" to blend in a wrapped leg. A little bit in the wing web to control drumming.
I can't think of all the uses right now, but it is VERY handy stuff!