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this is what a completely degreased bear skull

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by mk, Aug 12, 2009.

  1. mk

    mk -30 below

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    looks like... I recieved this skull back in march, so I am thinking it was a good 4months degreasing time. I haven't even whitened it yet and it could leave as is. here's some pics of it.
     

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  2. mk

    mk -30 below

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    last2
     

    Attached Files:


  3. Looks Great w/o whitening. I have a bear that I will probably leave alone as it is 15yrs oldish MA Black and was shot in the face/head a several times and I had to do some reconstructive surgery to the face & jaw so I would hate to have to redo all that work. BTW, none of the Rifles 44 Mag bullets made it thru the head muscle of the head, bullets came out in prestine shape.
     
  4. bulldog4949

    bulldog4949 "Mounting your Memories"

    mk, will you share what your method was?

    Thanks.
     
  5. mk

    mk -30 below

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    bulldog- i will.

    now i also have a water tank heater in a tub, gets the water to 120deg roughly. i use dawn and water just squirt it in till the water is soapy maybe a cup for 10-15gals? i had other skulls in there at the time. teeth will fall out so i put the top skull in a zip lock bag and the lower jaws in a zip lock bag also. change water each week or just add water do this when water starts looking nasty. Other products i use are epo-grip blood out degreaser and rittels supersolvent. I use that later on in the degreasing process. I like the supersolvent the best though. and don't need much of that either. same thing in the hot tub.

    Now, i take the skull out after 2months roughly collect the teeth and air dry the skull out for a few days and put it in a bucket of acetone. left it in there for maybe a month. take that out and then put in a bucket of super solvent and hot tap water and left it in there during my 2 week trip. took it out air dry and put out in the sun for a day or 2.
     
  6. bulldog4949

    bulldog4949 "Mounting your Memories"

    I have had poor results from rittels super solvent.

    Not sure why though.

    Thanks man.
     
  7. staffs-skeletons

    staffs-skeletons www.skeletonsUK.com

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    Don't whiten it. It looks real nice natural.
     
  8. mk

    mk -30 below

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    I didn't want to at all. I called the guy up and told him it looks sweet as is but wanted it a snow white color, so into the peroxide and basic white it went. :p

    try using 1/2 to a 1/3 of the recommended amount per gal. i think this year i'm gonna have my welder guy build me a box and i'll just put in deer skulls into the acetone for a week or so. i have more trouble with whitetail skulls than i do bear it seems. Thats why i believe acetone is key in degreasing. but i think would only work effectively during the warmer months or at room temp as any oils or grease wont liquify in the colder temps.
     
  9. bulldog4949

    bulldog4949 "Mounting your Memories"

    I have a stubborn bear skull now...I will try it again with the heater.

    Thanks.
     
  10. zubba

    zubba Active Member

    Looking good MK. Is there a good way to tell the Dawn is degreasing the skull. I dropped a bear skull in dawn water about a week ago. Just changed the water and added a fish tank heater. I was assuming grease would be floating on the surface...but is wasn't. Water was a bit murky though. It is just plain ol' Dawn dishsoap. So is there a good way to tell it is degreasing? Thanks
     
  11. Wolfwoman

    Wolfwoman $90 for your fur made into trapper hat or mitts!

    Good job mk!! Now you can take over the answering of the questions!!! lol
     
  12. mk

    mk -30 below

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    Kurt, murky water is good as it shows blood, etc leaving the skull, but i usually change that water relatively quick for your first degrease like 2-3 days throw that water out and start new, then you can go 1x a week water change or so. You'll know for sure when your skulls are degreasing when you have white waxy stuff floating on top of the water- thats the fat and oils in the skull rising to the top of the water. i would say ditch the fishtank heaters, as they only get so warm and cost just as much if not more than a water tank heater you can buy at the hardware store. and buy the water tank thermostat to put on your tub or container so you can adjust the temp of the water some what.

    but the key is putting it in acetone for a length of time - it doesn't dissolve the grease it kinda pulls it out of the skull, kinda like coleman fuel and bird skins.

    I want to get a container made that will fit a buffalo skull that will sit in acetone completely submerged as i feel this would do wonders. I'd have to leave it outside though and it wouldn't be of use during the colder months.


    bonnie, yeah trying to get the questions answered as best i can. some of these skulls can be a real pain, i just want to show people it is possible to get them fully degreased, but it takes time and isn't gonna happen over night.
     
  13. Wolfwoman

    Wolfwoman $90 for your fur made into trapper hat or mitts!

    It's not, you're right. But if they search they will find the answers they are looking for rather than you repeating over and over and over and over and over and over and over again.

    I use a fishtank heater and have never used acetone and mine look just like yours, but I'm not repeating anymore...LOL I had to figure it out on my own and I've done the tutorial ;D

    [​IMG]
     
  14. mk

    mk -30 below

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    nice skulls bonnie, those whitened w/ peroxide?

    i know you do alot of maceration, whenever i have macerated skulls i find they degrease easier than beetle cleaned ones- as i feel the bacteria in the water eats away at the grease in the bone, but i said the hell with that as it is nasty and a pain trying to find teeth in goo.lol.
    what do you do during the winter months?
     
  15. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Don't forget that bear grease is liquid at room temp, deer fat is not. Deer fat will form a layer on top of the water. Most bear grease is what is making the "murk" as it is suspended in the water/detergent. Chucking the fish tank heaters is fine, but only after you have invested the time and $$$ to buy all the parts for the water tank version and assembled it. I have all the parts on my kitchen table. They have been there for 5 months and I'm still using the aquarium heaters. :)
     
  16. Gobblingfever

    Gobblingfever 100% PEER GOBBLER ADDICTION!!!!

    MK will a 55 gallon drum cut to size hold Acetone without eating through?? Have you tried straight Amonia rather then acetone? Acetone is much spendier then Amonia and to by many gallons at $15 a gallon get spendy. Nice skulls by the way.
     
  17. Wolfwoman

    Wolfwoman $90 for your fur made into trapper hat or mitts!

    Yup they were whitened, that's how the customer wanted them :)

    I use a good heater during the winter... but last winter the heater got unplugged and the whole dang bun froze... I am working on those skulls now, they've been around a couple years... lol

    I macerate most everything, have been doing a little experimenting with my turkey fryer and degreasing tho. We'll see how that works.
     
  18. michael p.

    michael p. Getting better with age :)

    Good job as always Matt
     
  19. zubba

    zubba Active Member

    Thanks Matt. I will look into the heaters. I definately have mixed feelings about maceration. I like the fact it is easy. But damn that smell is something. When I took the bear skull out of maceration...I thought I was going to die. Being a little worried about losing teeth, I put on 2 layers of gloves and started digging. Damn, I swear I passed out and when I came to, I continued digging. Convinced I found all the teeth, I put them in a bag and started to clean up....except I could smell that stench everywhere I went. I swear it was embedded in my hands. I quickly hopped in the shower and scrubbed my hands until I swear they were ready to bleed. Hopped out of the shower and sure enough, I could smell the stench. Pretty much assuming I was sleeping on the couch that night, I mixed up about 50/50 Lysol & water mix and soaked my hands for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes, most of the smell was gone except a light trace. Good enough to get me back in bed with my wife anyways. The next morning, when I walked into my shop, I thought I was going to die. I must have gotten some of the water on my shoes and my whole shop stunk. So I'm loving the fact it is easy, but I think I might need to invest in a body suit. All is well now.

    Sea Wolf...thanks for that bit of info. I have read where the grease will form at the top like a wax...and I haven't gotten that yet. Water gets murkey, but no floating grease.
     
  20. bulldog4949

    bulldog4949 "Mounting your Memories"

    Yes maceration is the best way. BUT, you pay for it by the smell.

    If it gets on you, it stays on you. Use gloves, and do not spill it on your clothes.

    Beetles are so much easier! Lol

    But they have their own smell as well.