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Deer Skeleton Articulation Question

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by WolfGirl, Jul 18, 2012.

  1. If any remember, several months ago I was working on articulating a male white tail deer skeleton. I've recently had some time to work on it again and it seems it's done degreasing. It's been a big learning experience for me doing such a large animal for my first articulation. I've got all of the legs pinned and glued, the vertebrae is complete, and I have both back legs up. The only issue I'm having atm is how to attach the ribs and the skull. Could anyone give me some tips?

    Here are some pictures of my progress so far, I'm trying to put him in a slow walking/watching pose.

    Some of the ribs are shattered and I repaired them the best I could but some are missing the top that attaches to the vertebrae. He was killed by a car I believe, since I found him close to a highway. I also am not attaching the sternum to the rib cage. If you can tell in the pictures, the tops of two vertebrae have been broken and healed over. I found a bullet among the bones when I found him and I'm guessing he had been shot in the back before but survived. Deer sure are good survivors, poor guy must have had a bad backache.
  2. Looks beautiful! It can be whitened a bit more though :)
    Can you post pics of the skull?
    The ribs can be glued in position with wires for suppport, like this:
    For attaching a skull, brain cavity can be filled with suitable material that will hold it on wire. Foam, or apoxie sculpt, or something else.
    Looks like last tail vertebrae are missing, is it true?

  3. I chose not to whiten the skeleton because I wanted a more natural look and yes it is missing the tail vertebrae. I searched the site where I found him but I just couldn't find any except for the first one. I'm guessing something carried it off, but I was lucky nothing else was missing.

    Thanks for the advice of the foam, that sounds like a great idea and ill try it out.

    Heres the skill, he sadly has no antlers and it looks as though he shed them naturally.
  4. Yeah, scavengers like biting tails off :)
    What happened with hooves? They might be part of skeleton too.
    Since molar teeth are present, it's possible to determine his age.
    One of the incisors was already missing, right?
  5. I determined him to be about 5-6 years old and the hooves where to far gone to use, they had been eaten away by mold :(
  6. The front teeth I scavenged from another deer, since they where also missing.
  7. Will you attach antlers, if acquired? A cast can suit as well (any score you want)))
    And maybe tail & hooves?
  8. I was thinking of attaching antlers some time, if I ever find sheds next time I go hiking I might attach them.
  9. Hurry up and try to find any before porcupines will...
    Too bad that horns are rarely found close from each other.
  10. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    If you bend the end wire the right way and wrap the end with some foam, you can set the skull on the end without filling it with epoxy. This will allow you to remove the skull at your discretion to be examined. You might want to consider drilling and pinning the ribs in position with metal rods. Glue alone might not last.

    Keep the bullet with the deer too. Your critter has a story. .. Too bad he has to live in the garage. :)
  11. Here's a picture of the bullet, any idea on what kind it is? I know nothing about guns lol. He's going somewhere in the house when hes finished but for now while I'm working on him he will stay in the garage.
  12. Nice. I search/find bones in the woods as well. I have to say that, with the two almost-complete deer that I have found.. neither one had the tail vertebrae :/
    Shot could be a .44 Magnum?
  13. joey font

    joey font Member

    Could be a Barnes muzzleloader bullet or something similar
  14. LordRusty

    LordRusty If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong.

    Skulls Unlimited sells several good books regarding skeleton articulation.




    I have a few coming my way, and I'm anxious to get into them!

    Your Deer skeleton is looking good. Just take your time ... it will all come together eventually. ;)
  15. thus-sung

    thus-sung New Member

    You can also buy these books directly from the author, at http://www.theboneman.com/

    They're FANTASTIC resources!
  16. Deer Skeleton Articulation-Finished

    I've been done with him for a couple days but haven't had time to post the pictures. I think I did a pretty good job and I did get some antlers for him but they are not attached yet.
    Looks like im going to have issues keeping the cat away from this lol
    I'll take better and more detailed photos once the antlers are up.
  17. Voltrax

    Voltrax New Member

    Wolfgirl now we all know how You looks like! You are young woman about 25 years, You have brown hairs and green eyes. We know that all from Your foots!
    Next time be more careful when doing some photo's :D
    And now for that more serious part: You did some good job and I like the position too but scapula's are in wrong position. They should be more forward and little bit higher.
  18. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    So true. Good job nonetheless for a first time like this. The painted toenails are a nice touch too. Looks like it doesn't live in the garage anymore. :)
  19. I like it :) It'd be something that I would be proud to display in my home. I hope that my first one looks as good.
  20. I have a cleaned and bagged doe just waiting for a cougar skeleton so I can do a dream combo mount I've had designed in my head for years.

    I think you did a wonderful job!

    Just my opinion, but, I wouldn't mess with the positions of the scapula's, maybe they are a bit low, as Voltrax has pointed out, but they float similar to our shoulders do when in motion, so the positioning can vary. By the way, it's hard for me to tell but is the right side damaged? If it's super critical, you can mail me some clay (a small amount) and I can press you a right scapula from mine,(front & back) so that you can cast one from resin or plaster. No biggie, keep it in mind, PM if your interested.