as you probably read earlier I just got an elk to mount and this thing is really bloody. I went ahead and caped it out and have salted it twice. Now, right before I get ready to pickle it, can I rinse it off to get the worst of the blood off the cape, so my pickle isn't a bloody mess? I'm planning on pickling as soon as I rinse it, so there won't be a lapse of any time sitting wet. Did any of that make any sense? LOL.
Also what is the best way to fasten the skull plate to the form. With deer I use 3 3" drywall screws, but I think something heavier is in order, whatya suggest?
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I'd hose that sucker off with a good nozzle to get rid of most of the blood before I contaminated my pickle.
As for the skullplate, I'd never trust a drywall screw with anything. They are tempered and snap too easily. Even my deer antlers get secured with stainless steel #12 screws. With elk, I usually use 3/8 lag bolts as a minimum.
However, keep in mind that after you rinse it, the cape will be full of water and when you through it in the pickle, it may slightly dilute your pickle, so re-check the PH. I assume you are not going to use soap to wash out the cape, becuase that will also affect the PH.
I would rinse it and using peroxide to get the blood out of the hair and cape. Then rinse again then place in pickle. Be sure to check ph before and after you add cape to pickle. Also be sure to stir pickle before and after you add cape but before you check ph.
Hope this helps. I just have seen blood in the hair get harder to get out if you pickle it with the blood in it.
Van Dykes sells "Eliminator" and Newton Supply sells "Bloodout/Degreaser" which are SOAPS designed specifically to chemically break down the protein of blood and remove it as well as the other gunk that lives in the hair LIKE URINE. Peroxide has a cleansing quality (it bubbles when it contacts blood and protein) and a bleaching quality, but when exposed to air, it quickly becomes just plain distilled water.