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mouth filler

Discussion in 'Fish Taxidermy' started by jimss, May 23, 2014.

  1. jimss

    jimss Active Member

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    I'm getting ready to mount a very large trout (20 lbs). The blank has no inside mouth features. I was wondering different options for filling the large hole space in the back of the mouth. I've used expandable foam in the past but was lucky on my last blank that it didn't split the form when expanding. I'm pretty sure I remember a post a long time ago where someone used paper towels to plug the hole. Then used epoxy grip or something else over the towels. The mouth I'm working on is fairly large in size 3" x 1 1/2" hole so would take a lot of expensive apoxie sculpt to fill. I expect bondo would run and be tough to use? Thanks for any info!---
     
  2. 1fish2fish

    1fish2fish Well-Known Member

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    Maybe it was paper towels with super glue squeezed on top. I think it was Josh K who shared that tip for backing eye sockets.
     

  3. M.T.

    M.T. Active Member

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    Why do many taxidermists rely on the knowledge of other taxidermists when something as easy as this problem can be solved? Will paper towel, cotton, felt, toilet paper, sawdust, old t-shirt, jersy glove... Rot? just sayin'. I've never used any of those things but damn, I would sure do it before I had to rely on someone else to give me an answer!
     
  4. 1fish2fish

    1fish2fish Well-Known Member

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    New wave might have a latex mouth plug if interested.
     
  5. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    M.T., all of us aren't legends in our own minds and we're not ashamed to ask if there might be a better way that the majority of people are using that they find successful. Attitudes like yours reinvent the wheel every day when they might have found a better idea just by asking a simple question.

    Jim, I pour expandable foam in those reproductions like you're speaking of. I learned a hard lesson doing this once so for what it's worth, I wrap the reproduction in duct tape as tight as I can before pouring the foam in. I had one split on me from the foam once and just do that out of habit. The foam will allow you to carve and sculpt your own inner mouth without having to worry about your "stuffing" collapsing on you while you work.
     
  6. I stuff newspaper in my blanks then fold a piece of newspaper like a cup or small bowl and shove it in the back of the mouth. Then I pour foam in and let it rise. I take a plastic bag and shove it in the mouth and hold it with my hands to form the top and bottom of the mouth.any excess foam will push the newspaper back instead of splitting the blank. Then you just have to do a little more shaping and all game over the foam. Any foam that runs out on the blank can be washed off with lacquer thinner before it gets hard..I also make sure foam goes back enough to fill where the eyes are .
     
  7. 1fish2fish

    1fish2fish Well-Known Member

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    Like George says, you need to take precautions not to crack your blank. I've used a good size relief hole in the backside of a blank before putting in the expandable foam and it worked good (granted the blank was so thick a jackhammer wouldn't crack it anyway). Doesn't save money like jkmitch's method, but gives the foam a place to go other than out the mouth and helps prevent cracking. Probably should have wrapped it in duct tape like George says to reinforce against axial expansion too, but again, this blank was like a cinder block.
    Best, Scott
     
  8. 1 fish2fishnyou full of crap. Don't jump to conclusions that I'm doing this to save money. My experience is a blank full of foam can tend to crack at the seams over the years with the expansion and contraction of the temperature change .
     
  9. jimss

    jimss Active Member

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    Thanks for all the suggestions! It sounds like foam is the way to go. I will definitely use the duct tape idea! I also like the newspaper idea so the foam has room for expansion without undo stress on the blank. It was easy to carve the extra foam on my last mount so that shouldn't be a problem....just save time if as mentioned in one of the posts I can restrict the foam to only the areas with tongue, roof of mouth, etc.

    It's great there is a website like taxidermy.net where those that have so much knowledge are willing to share with others. It saves people like me a lot of time and grief using trial and error!
     
  10. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    jkmitch, what the hell are you reading? Or is it just your OTR day? He was saying that your method would save money, he never said YOU said you did it to save money. Geeze, get a grip. A quality closed cell foam neither expands nor contracts due to outside forces after it's cured. That's why it's used as insulation material in homes, boats, etc.
     
  11. 1fish2fish

    1fish2fish Well-Known Member

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    Yep. What is the expression....."X2"

    Best, Scott
     
  12. Jimmy Lawrence

    Jimmy Lawrence Well-Known Member

    Just fill the whole fish with bondo. That'll do it
     
  13. Perca

    Perca Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]
     
  14. 1fish2fish

    1fish2fish Well-Known Member

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    Bondo Perca, not popcorn!
     
  15. You right. I took you comment wrong. I apologize. I hadn't had my coffee and got up on the wrong side of the bed..one time I bought a blank of a 9 foot hammerhead that was full of foam and it was hung outside. It cracked at the seams. I had to take it down and cut the back out to dig all the foam out. Since then I've been cautious about filling them up all the way.
     
  16. Jimmy Lawrence

    Jimmy Lawrence Well-Known Member

    Hopefully everyone knows that was a joke....
     
  17. jimss

    jimss Active Member

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    I like the bondo idea!!! I have some 1/2" rebar to hold it up! If anyone questions whether my brown trout was a 30 lber I could have them lift it up!
     
  18. M.T.

    M.T. Active Member

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    Holy Chit George, I would have never thought you would've said something like that to me!!! You know damn well exactly what I'm talking about. It's really no different than someone wanting to know where they can get reproduction baitfish and who sells them. Look it up, look in all your supply catalogs and do something on your own for once! Pisses me off! Of course the last part of this wasn't directed towards you George because you, like myself, have been doing this chit longer than a lot of these guys have been on this earth. Legend in my own mind, ya, that works!
     
  19. den007

    den007 Active Member

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    Foam will work as some have tried to describe. Once expanded, it will not continue and blow your replica apart. Nothing wrong with a latex mouth plug and they are so very easy to make.
     
  20. double barrel

    double barrel New Member

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    In 1968 the Northwestern School of Taxidermy taught on pg. 3 of book 4 to fill the entire mouth with paper mache' or plaster of paris and smooth out with a wet spoon. Paint interior of mouth "tiddie pink" to simulate a real fish. Works for me. LOL!