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Loving the Paraloid B72

Discussion in 'Skulls and Skeletons' started by Skulltastic, Jul 28, 2018.

  1. Skulltastic

    Skulltastic Member

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    Just talking out loud here...

    Just finished up a little whitetail buck skull I had kicking around. Gave it the Paraloid b-72/acetone dunk, spooned some over the spots I couldn't dunk, and acid brushed the other areas. Love how you have a perfect even coat everytime, and have no worries of drips or runs. I Let it dry. I love the way it locks up loose bones and teeth. I'm doing a very mild solution of it, but as long as the skull is handled carefully and not pried on, I find most times those loose rattling teeth are now all locked in place with no movement. Those nose bones that still wiggle if you were to grab them with your finger tips are now also locked in place. The solution is very thin so there is no strength comparison to actually gluing them in. However its nice to have a skull even if it hangs on the wall static and is not handled, that has everything locked down and not loose, without having to do a separate gluing step. I never thought I would like the very mild satin sheen that it gives to the smoother sections of bone, because I never liked that gloss lacquered look. However it just enough to give a nice finished appearance and depending on the light isn't really noticeable.

    Homedepot carries a 2 gallon white plastic bucket with handle, and you can get a white snap on lid for it there also. Both have the number "2" plastic symbol on them, and have been holding up to the acetone for a year. What is nice is because it is all white you can clearly see if there is any debris that fell into the solution. Also the lid does NOT have a rubber gasket, its just made of plastic that snaps on tight, so there is no risk of the gasket melting and getting gluey exposed to the acetone. 2 gallons of acetone fill it up nicely within about an inch of the brim. It is the perfect size to do whitetail and medium to small skulls without breaking the bank to fill with acetone/paraloid.

    I can't wait until hunting season starts up again and this forum starts rolling steady again...
     
    Megan :) and Skullery like this.
  2. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Been using it for years and I do enough that I keep it in a 5 gal bucket. Any carnivore skulls get a full dunk. Almost everything fits in a 5 gallon bucket. I even do horse skulls by rotating the sections and submerging all parts eventually. The slight shine will appear on more solid sections of bone where it doesn't soak in as readily. If it is too much, I rub down the shine with a clean, white rag and some acetone. Another nice thing with this is that it is washable. If a friends kid with sticky fingers is looking at something and leaves chocolate or gummy bear marks on it, a rinse with hot/warm soapy water and a drip dry is all it needs.
     
    Megan :) likes this.

  3. Megan :)

    Megan :) Well-Known Member

    Really helpful post, thank you. I am seriously considering finding some of this stuff to try myself as I keep hearing good things.
     
  4. tomdes

    tomdes Me my dear and Fall BAZZ!!!

    It's great stuff!!
     
  5. JohnBud

    JohnBud New Member

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    I have an antelope skull that is clean, white and ready to seal. Rather than making a 2 gallon batch, could I make a smaller (2 cups?) batch of Paraloid in acetone and "paint" it on with a brush? Please let me know what you think. Any recommendations that you might have are greatly appreciated!
     
  6. Great Skulls

    Great Skulls Member

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    Yes, that will work. Dunking is better though. Acetone is cheap and if you don't want to store it, just let it evaporate afterward and then you can reconstitute the paraloid next time you need it.
     
  7. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    You can also make your batch using denatured alcohol as the solvent. Much easier to store and handle as well as cheaper. The alcohol solution takes longer to dry though. If you want to brush it on, make your solution thin so it has time to soak in. Keep brushing and turning the skull so you get all surfaces of it evenly. A dunk and soak will be better and that same batch can be used over and over and over again.
     
  8. JohnBud

    JohnBud New Member

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    Thank you, Great Skulls and Sea Wolf! This is very helpful.
     
  9. JohnBud

    JohnBud New Member

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    Good to know that the paraloid solution can be kept and re-used. Just ordered 1 Kg of Paraloid B72. I would like to prepare 2 gallons of the paraloid solution to dunk my antelope skull. How many grams of paraloid should be used per gallon of acetone or denatured alcohol?
     
  10. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    If you use the advanced search, someone posted a chart of ratios of sorts for mixing. To be honest, I have never measured and go by eye. In 2 gallons, try 4 cups to start with. Keep stirring that around till it is all dissolved. Should be a little thicker than water. Take the bucket lid and drop some drips on it and let them fully dry. Peel up what is left and see how thick it is. If it is extremely thin, maybe add another cup per gallon and test again. As I use what I have in the bucket I am always adding in either more crystals and/or some solvent. It isn't a set thing but more what you like the look of. Thicker will give you a heavier, glossier coating. Thinner will show more of the bone surface texture.
     
    JohnBud likes this.
  11. PJS

    PJS New Member

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    I will be dunking my whitetail skull very soon, however I am unsure how to deal with the broken nose bones. Do I glue them in with the paraloid solution? I am concerned if I dunk the skull after I have glued the nose bones in place, that the acetone paraloid solution will loosen the nose bones and cause them to fall out. How would you deal with this situation?
     
  12. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    Use Elmer's glue. Glue them in and try to have little to none of the glue exposed. Clamp and make sure all the glue is dry before dipping. Dunk the skull right up to the underside of the antler burrs. Pull it out and let it drip for a while back into the container. Turn it to allow and pools of it inside to run out. Hang it over the bucket lid until dry completely. You will be able to trim off any hanging drips with a knife and it should be fine. I have found that Elmer's Glue when exposed to acetone, turns white for a while but goes back to normal after time. I have not tried it with paraloid dissolved in alcohol. The 2 seconds or so that the glue is exposed to the acetone is not long enough to damage it. Your other option would be to dunk the skull and the front bones and then try to assemble them all while the paraloid is still wet. You can't really clamp them with anything after without damaging the finish and, if you allow the coating to dry, enough of it will be on the bone surface that the parts will not fit together well unless you wet the matching areas with acetone enough to soften or remove the paraloid. Gluing, dry and dunk is the least amount of work.
     
  13. Gritsnfishin1

    Gritsnfishin1 New Member

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    What's the difference between all the numbers for different paraloids? I'm looking online to purchase some for my first project and have found various numbers. Just wanted to know what the different numbers meant.
     
  14. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    There are a few and I'm not entirely sure. What you get for consolidation and sealing skulls is B72. Don't get any of the others and don't try to purchase the already made up liquid which is hideously expensive .. and you need special permits to have it shipped.
     
  15. Gritsnfishin1

    Gritsnfishin1 New Member

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    Thanks Sea Wolf.
     
  16. Sportsman13

    Sportsman13 New Member

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    Is there a minimum temp that this should be done in. I was planning to finish up my skull, but that question popped up. It's going to be in the 40s all week. Thanks!
     
  17. Sea Wolf

    Sea Wolf Well-Known Member

    I would not want to be working in 40 degree temps. Bring it inside to work on. You must have a heated area ... even the kitchen, you could work with it in. It won't hurt anything .. unless you have kids that are going to want to play in it. Spread newspapers on the floor to catch any missed drips. Most drips should be on the lid or a plastic surface so you can put them back in the bucket. Put a stick across the backs of two chairs so you can hang it to dry.

    It's going to dry at 40 degrees but I personally want to be warmer than that.