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Anything to help keep scales on crappie During the mounting process

Discussion in 'Fish Taxidermy' started by meat, May 14, 2017.

  1. meat

    meat Active Member

    Any suggestions on what helps keep the loose scales on a crappie during the mounting process. Any help would be greatly appreciated!! Thank you !! Have a great Day !! Kevin

    WLELTD Active Member

    soak in denatured alcohol just before you mount the fish resoak in dawn,heard of painting elmers glue on the skin but just don't see it ,even a good layer of borax would help, then rinse him once mounted

  3. fishmaster

    fishmaster Well-Known Member

    Also, cut from where the top edge of the gill flap attaches to the body (on the back side) up to the top of the head. This allows the skin to lay flat and makes it much easier to flesh and skin out.
    TPT66 likes this.
  4. Perca

    Perca Well-Known Member

    This has been discussed numerous times on the forum and there are several effective ways to prevent or reduce scale loss. Without repeating much, I will say that AFTER MOUNTING, when the skin is dry, it is very easy to pull scales from the backside and insert them where corresponding scales are missing on the show side. Shove the scales into the vacant pockets with tweezers and seal them down with a bit of Super Glue. Lots of missing scales, even PATCHES of many scales can be replaced that way, and you just can't get more realistic than real.
    If you research Cecil's way to skin a crappie, it will be the single most helpful advice to reduce losing scales in the first place. Good luck.
  5. Cecil

    Cecil Well-Known Member

    I take the carcass out in three sections with curved scissors before doing my scraping. Once across in the caudal area. Once in the center, and the last vertical cut behind the gills. Less stress on the skin that way. If you try and take out the carcass in one piece like you do with other species it's really rough on the skin and you WILL loose scales.

    I have dumped salt on the show side while the fish is thawing, but for the most part the above works very well for me.

    Just did an 18 inch crappie as in above and it worked like a charm. Didn't lose one scale.

    One more tip: If you have tissue that is being stubborn to scrap off carefully scrape with a fresh scalpel blade.
  6. Perca

    Perca Well-Known Member

    I will add one tip that I haven't seen posted before that helps me a LOT in reducing crappie scale loss. Scales don't just FALL OUT. They are pulled out by friction with the surface they contact. I skin fish on waxed freezer paper. The waxed surface of freezer paper is relatively slick compared to other surfaces we skin fish on. I always hope that the crappie has as much SLIME on it's skin as possible and do NOTHING to remove any of it. I squirt a generous amount of Dawn Dish Soap on the waxed freezer paper and then slide the show side of the crappie around on it. The slime on the fish mixes with the Dawn and produces a bubbly , slimey, slick slurry that reduces the friction between the skin and the waxed paper to just about zero. Even if the fish moves around a little during skinning (as per Cecil's 3 section body removal) few, if any, scales are pulled out. And as I mentioned earlier, if a few do come out, they are easily replaced with corresponding scales from the wallside. I hope this helps you out. Good luck.
  7. Cecil

    Cecil Well-Known Member

    I also believe a lot of scales are lost by bending the skin. Do not bend the skin if you can help it.
    TPT66 likes this.
  8. Craig W

    Craig W New Member

    I've done the same as mentioned before.I always take the body out in sections and that seems to help.I've soaked them in alcohol and covered them in salt.Both worked.I use salt the most.The biggest thing is being careful while handling the skin until it's mounted.
  9. meat

    meat Active Member

    Thanks To all who responded to my question!! You guys are awesome !!! Very helpful!! Thank You!!
  10. Monty Artrip

    Monty Artrip Active Member

    I definitely agree with you Cecil. I do something a bit different to avoid bending the skin and remove the head before skinning. I have found that most of the bending occurs while removing the spine etc from inside the head. I have seen some proof of this on mounted fish by others that were missing scales just behind the cilethrium and just forward of the tail. I also place them on cheapy washcloths from Dollar store and move the cloth around while skinning to avoid picking up the skin. Everyone has a little different trick and the best thing is to combine methods into a system that works for you.