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Crane heads

Discussion in 'Bird Taxidermy' started by 3bears, May 4, 2018.

  1. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    OK, anyone that does cranes on a regular basis or have successfully done some in the past. Do you use an artificial head or the real head? At a glance I didn't see d defined feather/skin junction to cut for an artificial. I use artificial on most birds but on occasion have used the real ones but I often treat it the same way when skinning. If you use the real one, is an incision needed to turn the neck skin over the head? Skinning it is this afternoon's job so hopefully I can get some input yet this AM.
     
  2. Texasbanditto

    Texasbanditto New Member

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    Hey 3Bears:

    I am not a professional, I been doing this fun stuff for 3 years. This year I did my first cranes and their purpose was for my decoy spread. I used the real heads. I made an incision from the middle of the head and down the neck (maybe an inch or so, I usually start with a small one and cut larger as I need to). They turned out just fine and I think if I groomed them , etc etc they would make nice mounts.

    As far as turning the neck...I have no clue and wouldn't even want to venture a guess.

    I do have a question for you... when you use artificial heads, what adhesive do you use to glue the skin to them?

    Thanks in advance for your answer on adhesive and I hope I have been of some assistance.
     

  3. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    I use super glue gel to glue the skin around the bill/beak and I often times use a little caulk injected in prior to gluing the skin down for the rest of it. Thanks for your input, when I start it I will consider my options.
     
  4. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Alright dammit since everyone was busy or just didn't want to reply I ended up skinning like I was using a repro head. I plan to either cast the original or use the original, not sure yet but I'll try to remember to let you know. Maybe someday I'll be bored and upload some pics of the progress but don't hold your breath. Let me say this, they are some tough skinned sumbitches, the only holes I put in the skin, I did with the scalpel and with them damn long wing bones, it makes it interesting to flesh them with the standard VanDykes bird flesher.
     
  5. I skinned a sandhill crane awhile back and wondered the same thing. Originally planned to use the real head and asked Eugene Streekstra and Sam Cahoy prior to starting if it could be inverted. Both said yes but must make relief cuts...and both suggested to use an artificial head instead. The feather line was a little unclear to me as well so i cut into the bill some to make sure i had extra "material" just in case it was skinned incorrectly. I haven't fleshed the bird yet but my wire wheel is in a small box too that's for sure gonna make this thing hard to do. Not looking forward to it at all.
     
  6. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the reply Jason, I went ahead and skinned it for an artificial head, I think I'm going to cast the original with and open beak, as that is what he wants, I may just use the real one as well. It is back in the freezer for the time being, I just needed to make freezer space.
     
  7. Wildthings

    Wildthings Well-Known Member

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    Hey 3bears sent you a PM awhile ago. Been busy at the Louisiana State show this past weekend. I also skinned mine out for an artificial since the bill was blown apart badly. I left some bill flesh on the skin and fleshed it out that way. I'll trim it to match the artificial head. And yes you practically cannot wheel flesh a hole in them skins!!
     
  8. Nancy C

    Nancy C Well-Known Member

    I normally do them with the real head since the beak shrinkage is fairly easy to fix compared to a duck, and I think the hairs and texture on the natural crown look better, provided that they're brushed with glycerin+formaldehyde to help keep the papillae plump.
    With an open mouth it would be a toss-up, though.
     
  9. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Here's my plan right now, I'm going to cast the original with an open beak, once I get a pull I can work with, then I'm going to clean the real skull, pose it with beak open and rebuild the tissue with apoxie sculpt. I know, why both? So I can chose which looks the best.
     
  10. finazducks

    finazducks EJ is not the only one to have two Wasco Awards

    Eugene used our cast head. Maybe if he sees this he would post a picture here. He seemed to be pleased with it.
     
  11. 3bears

    3bears Well-Known Member

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    Is it open mouth?
     
  12. finazducks

    finazducks EJ is not the only one to have two Wasco Awards

    I have four sizes on is open mouth. The one Eugene did was closed mouth