How to preserve deer legs for gun racks ?

Submitted by Tommy on 01/29/2003. ( tommyand )

I have some deer legs I want to make a gun rack out of .
Since it was a doe thats all I have to mount!

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Try this

This response submitted by terry from KY. on 01/29/2003. ( )

I always skinned them out & mounted them the traditional way. Just for an experiment this winter, I took a few pair of feet & shot them full of denatured alcohol, after I washed them good with soap & water of course. Also clean the bone marrow out & fill the bone with borax. Then just tie them up with the bend that you prefer & they will dry up in about 2 weeks. When they dry, just fill the bone with bondo or epoxy & insert a coarse threaded bolt to secure it to the plaque. I've had better luck by filling the bone with bondo, drilling a hole after it sets up, & using a coarse threaded bolt from the backside of the plaque into the leg.(works great) I was always afraid that the hair would slip,but I have done several pair this way with no slippage yet. You also can't get a more natural looking foot by doing it this way. I'll keep doing it this way until something goes wrong. Everyone knows how aggrivating those feet are to skin & mount anyway.

Why Go Through All That Trouble?

This response submitted by ETCC on 01/29/2003. ( )

Use small size deer foot forms for gunracks...bolts already in them. What's so agrivating about skinning the deer feet properly? problem. Get the First WASCO Video Tape of their Sportman's Taxidermy Course Series...shows how to do it simply.

Skin them right down to the toes...simple.


This response submitted by George on 01/29/2003. ( )

EVERYTIME I think you're a real gomer, you come up with a legitimate response that's right on target. Go figure. (Now don't screw up, and come back with some unintelligible crap. OK?)


This response submitted by ETCC on 01/29/2003. ( )

Gotcha me fren...tankya fur yer input.

Me mudder tanks fadder tanks sister tanks brudder tanks pet goalkfish tanks ya...ETCC

...From the bottom of my heart...Now then...where do I send the nitroglycerinee pills?...hah...ED


This response submitted by terry on 01/30/2003. ( )

This was just an experiment. The feet aren't that much trouble to skin, I guess that I've done so many of them that I'm sick of doing them.


This response submitted by ETCC on 01/30/2003. ( )

Yeah...yeah...sure...we know...jest tryin two cover yerself...hah.

I knew it!

This response submitted by terry on 01/31/2003. ( )

I should've known that I'd get a bashing for that experiment. If it'll keep us all friends, I'll start skinning & mounting them like you old timers. (just kiddin') But thanks for the whoopin' though. Guess I had it coming.

A few more questions on alcohol

This response submitted by Tommy on 01/31/2003. ( )

Thanks for the response, can you tell me where to inject the denatured alcohol? Would I need to mainly shoot the joints,or pretty much the same all over. Also how much do the deer foot forms cost if I try both ways? Where is a good place to buy borax? Thanks again .


This response submitted by ETCC on 02/02/2003. ( )

Forget about the shooting-alchohol bit...use the Deer Foor Forms described above.

All dealers sell them...but...the best ones manufactured are the Helycote type manufactured by Penn Taxidermy. McKenzie Taxidermy Supply has them...also the self-centering Helycote Ferrules for the forms...simple to center on any pannel...I've used only these deer foot forms for years and recommend them highly...also the ones for the Deer Foot Lamps (but start wqith the gun rack style first).

I've tried other manufactured forms and was more than mildly unhappy at how disformed they really were. Get the best ones as described'll be glad you that did.

Heck...way-back-when...I use to cast my own after making molds...why bother now when they are so low in cost for the finest forms available?

The cost is low...around $3,00 or less per foot form...less than $2.00 for the Ferruls. Don't have the catalog in front of can't quote the exact to-the-penny cost.

Other dealers carry them in stock as well...including Jonas Brothers Taxidermy Supply in Colorado. Good luck to you...if you have a problem or E-Mail address is above.


This response submitted by ETCC on 02/02/2003. ( )

Oops...forgot to answer the secoind part of your question..."Where is a good place to buy Borax?"

Any local grocery store has it in stock...look for :20-Mule Team Borax" (NOT "Boraxo") in the aisles where they sell laundry soap products...5-pound box will cost you $4.95.

Get X-acto scalple type knives at your local Craft Supply Store or any hardware store...strurdy heavy gauge plastic 5-quart or smaller size flat-end style (so they'll set flat against a wall...if you decide to also use the Leon L Pray technique of wasing, preserving and moth proofing technique for the skinned deer feet prior to just mounting them)...tubs with built in handles for $1,99 at your local Big Lots store.

The best (in my opinion) skinning tray is a fibreglass shallow tray used by your local bakery... or bakery truck deliverers of bread to the stores. Maybe they'll sell you one with a crack in it cheap...just seal the crack and you're all set...I have two of them...usually colored green.

It's big enough to skin deer feet...squirrels...birds...etc. Pour in a layer of Borax...lay in your specimen and go to work. Once started skinning...a three hook chain suspended from the ceiling helps with the birds and small mammals...don't need it for the deer feet thougfh.

Terry from Ky . your way sounds the quickest.

This response submitted by Tommy on 02/04/2003. ( )

Can you respond on the places to shoot alcohol ? It may be that it seems the simplest but sounds the least time consuming. Does it need to be cool or warm in the area you dry the legs in ? Besides the Crappie are biting here in Alabama !

Thanks Tommy

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