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Alligator skull dergreasing

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by jimmy s., Jun 15, 2018.

  1. I got a nice alligator this past year and have been degreasing the skull since October. To be honest, I halfway forgot it was still in the garage in the cooler. The water has stayed around 115-120 degrees with dawn. I have changed the water only 3 times in the process. Ive done several big gators before and usually by now they would have been completely done. There's still a little bit of grease in the rear thicker parts of the skull. The question I have is do I just continue the water and dawn or try something else like Acetone for a few days? I am in no hurry or rush, just want to get it right and not against trying something new. Thanks
     
  2. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Try acetone .. or ammonia. Don't heat either one. Problem with acetone is that it will dissolve most any container you put it into and it's not cheap. Ammonia is cheap but it will melt your eyeballs working with it. :) If there is still grease after all this time maybe give the ammonia a shot first as it is cheaper? If it is a big one, might be a trick to find something that is acetone safe to soak it in. If you have it zip tied together to keep it from falling apart, acetone might dissolve the zip ties too.
     

  3. As always, thanks sea wolf! It's a XL skull about 26" long X 12" wide. will a hard plastic container hold up to the acetone? If not what would you suggest? Also, how long do you reccomend soaking in acetone before back into the warm dawn water? Thank you!!
     
  4. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    If you have a hard plastic container, look on the bottom and see if you can locate the coded triangle on the bottom. If it is ok for acetone, there should be a 2 on the bottom. If you have a 2, set the skull in it and cover with acetone and keep the cover on. Most of these containers don't seal tight so make sure it is away from ANY source of flame or ignition spark. Keep an eye on the level as it will probably evaporate some. If you can leave it in there for a month without issue, see if it changes appearance at all. It might thin the grease in the bone enough to be able to get more of it out. It might also remove a lot of the grease on it's own. After the acetone, it wouldn't hurt to try straight or very strong ammonia too if you can handle the fumes.
     
  5. I think I'm gonna just try straight ammonia to start with and put it in my outbuilding for a month or so. See how that works out. Thank you mam
     
  6. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Biggest one I have is 24 in. Would love to see pics. Did you bag the critter yourself?
     
  7. Yes mam I surely did. I'll try and attach a pic of it. Yea that didn't work too well.... send me an email address or something I'll send ya a few pics :)
     
  8. 2017 Gator - 12-2"
     

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  10. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    I know they get bigger but .. damn.
     
  11. He wasnt the biggest one Ive got but he was darn sure tag worthy :)