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how to boil a skull?

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by km123, Mar 8, 2014.

  1. km123

    km123 New Member

    I boiled my first skull yesterday. It was a guinea pig skull. I just scraped away as much meat as i could then i put it in a pot of water and got the water to a boil. Then after 20 min i scraped more away then put it back in the pot for 20 more min then scraped all the meat away again. Finally i put it in a small container of borax to get any of the little micro pieces of meat to dry and shrivel up. Then i took an old toothbrush and brushed away the borax and crusted meat (if there was any). I didnt whiten it bacause i liked the rustic look. But i just got a roadkill buck last night and i was going to try to clean that skull. It took me about 40 min of boiling total for a guinea pig skull. How lond should it take for a white tail buck? And did i do the process right with the guinea skull? Thank you for looking!
  2. kickstart59

    kickstart59 Member

    I would use some sal soda
    there are some that dont boil the skull, just leave it in water a week take off what you can and put back in water. This method doesnt soften the bone as much

  3. Go to tutorials and look up Michael P 5 hr Euro. That thread will answer all your questions.

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  4. Mike Powell

    Mike Powell Well-Known Member

    X 2 on the Sal Soda. Add it to the water and then simmer - its recommended you don't boil it as it will weaken the bone - for an hour or so. Take it out and clean off as much as possible and then put it back for another hour and you should pretty much have it.
  5. All of these people who invest in beetles or maceration systems must all be wrong, if we can just boil a skull and get it clean in such a short time!

    I am being ficitious, of course. :)
  6. Mr.T

    Mr.T Active Member

    There are more ways to clean a skull than the way that some elitist profess is the "only" way.
  7. Might want to try the skulls/skeletons section for future bone or skull reference.
  8. lizardguts

    lizardguts skull collector

    It's not the only way, just regarded as the best way for top quality results. Not everyone is going to care about top quality though, so in that case as long as a skull still looks as nice 10 years down the road as the day it left the shop, then whatever works for you.
  9. Leroy22

    Leroy22 Member

    ive found that macreation is the best and the easiest way to clean a skull but does smell pretty bad so if you live in the city then boilling may be what you have to do or have people mad at you for stinking up the place. Wouldn't live in the city if my life depended on it and my sympothy go's out to all that do!

  10. Tenbears

    Tenbears Member

    I am A beetle guy, maceration stinks, boiling there is no way to get all the cartilage out of the nose without damaging the nasal webbing, and both are more work. I trim the excess meat, remove the brain, and pop in the tank.

    In any event, put some peroxide in the water when you boil the skull. you will be amazed how white they come out. Nothing special, just plain old peroxide.
  11. I now use bugs but I used to boil. Just make sure you don't actually boil but rather simmer it. Not quite a boil. It should take about 4 ish hours give or take. Take it out about every 45 min and I used needle nosed pliers to pull meat off. Good luck
  12. Leroy22

    Leroy22 Member

    macreation does stink,im doing a opossum skull now and it does stink, I am seriously thinking on raising a beetle colony. the thing is feeding them when i don't have any skulls to do,how often do you have to feed them?anyone know?
  13. tazzymoto

    tazzymoto Well-Known Member

    A power washer works wonders on simmered skulls
  14. Tazzy you are so right.
  15. Tenbears

    Tenbears Member

    We run all year lone we have so many skulls, but it has not always been that way. to feed the bugs just always keep something with meat in the tank, even bad hamburger, road kill etc. but you can reduce the need to feed by reducing the temperature within the container, I find the beetles are at their best at 85 degrees, by reducing it they become less active. and consume less food. as the season begins to pick up increase temperature, and bug development as well.
  16. x 10

    Skin only, (waste of time to trim) simmer 3/4 hours, pressure wash it, bleach it (NOT Clorox) and be done with it.
    WARNING wear a rain suit you will get wet , not only with water but cooked residue crap.

    I use a #3 wash tub holds about 8 at a time. (give or take one or two depending on antler size.)