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Need help on bone deteroration

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by buckhunting101, Aug 25, 2009.

  1. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    I have a couple test skulls of mine and was wondering as to why the bone is deteriorating!!I pulled the skulls out of the degreaser and some parts of the bone on the back of the skulls and on the back of the jaw bones has actually deteriorated when i touched it.It was a powder like substance and has a soggy palish appearance to it.Can anyone tell me what happened and how i can stop it?Thanks
  2. Wolfwoman

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

    What have you used on it up to this point?

  3. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    well i macerated the skulls,put them on an outside shop table to have rain help clean them up for a while.Put them into BO cant remember how long exactly.Pulled them out and put in the sun to help give BO an extra kick and then have rain wash off the BO still on the skulls.Put them into degreaser with heated dawn and water for a couple days and pulled them out today.The bone on top one of the skulls is peeling off!!!!I only heated the water to 120 degrees.And dont know if this helps but i had aluminum tags on the skulls while degreasing NOT DURING WHITENING lol.The tags are all black and look burnt.Any suggestions?
  4. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Seems to be odd. Unless they were skulls of vry young animals. They should not really have been in the BO any longer than 24 hours or so. BO is really strong stuff but I have never had it damage a skull before. Putting stuff in the sun isn't going to do much with BO. The black aluminum might be from being exposed to stuff that is still decaying.

    How long did you macerate the skulls for to clean them? And how long did you leave them out exposed to the weather after that?
  5. jrm123

    jrm123 New Member

    By chance did you put the tags on after being in the BO? Just thinking that maybe the skull was still saturated with the BO and started a reaction with the metal tags while in the degreaser.
  6. susanl

    susanl New Member

    I've had 2 bears and one young buffalo this year where the bone on top looked like it was peeling off. We figured that was due to age or poor health. That is how the skull looked coming out of the beetles. Could be the same with yours. The bone on ours weren't deteriorating at the back though.
  7. cyclone

    cyclone Posts: 400001

    Did your degreasing solution contain ammonia?

    Any pics of the damage?
  8. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    No ammonia and yes they were in BO but set outside for about a month in rain before going into Degreaser.
  9. What were you testing? It failed!
  10. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    well i wasnt really "testing" more or less just practicing
  11. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Maybe try a couple more and keep moving them through the process without leaving them to sit outside in the weather. The elements can be very unkind to bone. Clean, degrease and whiten. That's about it.
  12. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    yea hopefully ill be getting better results
  13. Wildside

    Wildside Active Member

    Could you explain what your thoughts were?
  14. This might be kinda out there, but is there a lot of pollution where you live? Causes weak acid rain.....but if they were out there that long might be able to do it.
  15. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    Not bad pollution i think lol.I just cant figure it out!!It must have have been either the BO or the possible rise in temp in the degreaser setup.
  16. I have just started degreasing in heated bucket and have notices the bone deteriation on both new and old skulls fomr my collection. From button bucks to 8 pointers, bone on sides of teeth is disappearing.
  17. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Your degreasing temp shouldn't be over 120 degrees. When you say bone on the sides of the teeth, do you mean on the teeth themselves or parts of the jawbone/skull where the tooth sockets are? "On" the teeth would be accumulated calculus and the BO or peroxide will remove that in time. I have used BO on even 2 week old pup skulls and had no deterioration. BO is strong and it works fast. You shouldn't be leaving a skull in it for more than 2 days.

    Do you have anything else in your degreasing water except Dawn and water? Or are you using something else other than Dawn? The aluminum tag is probably a non issue.
  18. buckhunting101

    buckhunting101 Hides N Stuff Taxidermy

    nope just water and dawn
  19. cyclone

    cyclone Posts: 400001

    Aluminum forms a compound with ammonium hydroxide...aluminium hydroxide forms a gell-like substance in solution. It is also possible that the pH of the detergent would cause the formation of the aluminium hydroxide. It is possible that dissolved aluminum soaked into the bone and reacted when the hydroxide was added...
  20. The skull bone around the teeth. Just dish soap and water.