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Degreasing elk skull

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by Elkhuntr1, Nov 7, 2013.

  1. JRose

    JRose Member

    I dunno, that's a thought. I'm referring to cat skulls, mostly, which seem to always have deep purple staining in the face. I always assumed this was super grease, or possibly a result of trappers strangling/hanging the animal and causing some weird blood setting issue. That's just speculation. I rarely see purple stains in other skulls. And all of these skulls have been degreasing for quite some time now.
  2. skullclnr

    skullclnr Active Member

    I am testing this, took two deer fresh out of the bugs last night, blood stained to high hell, and one went in the heated degreasers and the other in cold dawn....results to come.

  3. BWebbs31

    BWebbs31 Classic Skull Mounts, LLC

    I'm marking this. I also have had those skulls that seem to get to a certain point and that's it. Fortunately, the spots were in areas that weren't very noticeable unless you went looking for it.

    I will say this, my degreasing tank just sprung a leak, so I just left the skulls sitting in their dawn & water buckets with no heat, while I've been making the repairs. It's been 3 days and the water in the buckets has NEVER been as cloudy as it is right now. Could be because the heated water broke down the type grease that's making the water cloudy, or because there's something to this??? I'm not sure. It's only been a few days, so I can't say that the skulls look any different, but it's something I'm really curious about.
  4. JRose

    JRose Member

    I'm not conducting a "controlled study" right now, but I'm finding that temperature fluctuations are helping me more than anything. In the last week alone I've had several skulls get removed from the hot water, cool for a few days (and in the process release loads of grease), and when I put them back in to heat that last stubborn patch of grease disappears!

    Dog, maybe add a third skull to your test- fluctuate the temps?
  5. brigham boy

    brigham boy "if it's horny, mount it"


    Sent from my SAMSUNG-SGH-I337 using Xparent Red Tapatalk 2
  6. Elkhuntr1

    Elkhuntr1 New Member

    Dog, keep us posted. I would love to here the outcome of this.
  7. Raphite01

    Raphite01 New Member

    It'd be nice if someone could do this experiment with a spare skull sawed in half down the middle, to reduce the chance that any difference in the results was due to variations in the individual animals.

    Plus a few replicates to increase the statistical power, of course. =)

    Obviously detergents more easily disperse less-viscous materials, and heat will make oils less viscous, but it doesn't seem impossible that there could be some unexpected physics going on with temperature fluctuations.
  8. mlo31351270

    mlo31351270 New Member

  9. just my 2 cents bot when we were doing some bear skulls the same thing happened-used the heated dawn for awhile and most of the grease came out but there were a few areas that would not-soaked in acetone for a few weeks then air dried for awhile then back to the heated dawn and that seemed to really help out .
    Thanks MIke b
  10. StickinEm

    StickinEm Member

    I recently went on vacation for 6 days. Not having someone to check on my degreasing tanks, I filled them like I usually do, added Dawn and left it sit unheated. When I returned from vacation, I was amazed at the amount of grease and fat that had come out of the skulls. I'm very interested to see what you guys come up with on your experiments on this "cool water" degreasing.
  11. So it seems like degreasing with cold water and dawn works but does anybody have an estimate on how long it takes? Thanks Im 15 and trying to start a Euro mount business after I scored on a couple thousand beetle colony. it is so much better than simmering skulls. Thanks
  12. coop1212

    coop1212 Active Member

  13. JRose

    JRose Member

    It seems that either hot or cold degreasing on super greasy skulls inevitably hits a standstill, and giving it the temperature fluctuation seems to jolt the process a bit.
  14. Interesting. How cold are you talking? It's below freezing here so obviously I couldn't leave my degreasing buckets totally unheated, but if having the water at 70 degrees works just as good as 120 degrees it sure would save on electricity.
  15. StickinEm

    StickinEm Member

    The water temp while I was gone was probably in the 40's.
  16. Awesome. Maybe cycling the water temperature helps in the same way switching from Dawn to Ammonia helps - a change that may have a different effect. Thanks, I will try cold-water degreasing on my next batch of skulls. I'm never in a hurry with them anyway :)