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Bondo Vs. Ear Liners And Why?

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by Dennis Duffy, Feb 22, 2020.

  1. Dennis Duffy

    Dennis Duffy Member

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    I was wondering who uses the Bondo / fiberglass method on their ears or who uses the ear liners and reasons for doing so. Looking for the pros and cons to both methods. Any information would be greatly appreciated.
     
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2020
  2. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    Are you opening a can of worms here as this is a beginner section and those who are beginners probably don’t know too much cause of learning the trade but I’ll bite into it some.
    Pros for earliners, thinness , accuracy, looks, feel, less chance of drumming are a few plus attachment.
    Cons of earliner, removal of cartilage can be a pain, ripping ear skin, drumming with improper fits and glues . Hair alinement cause of not understanding references.
    Bondo ears pros. If done by a high quality professional can make it work well. But there is a good understanding on how to do it right and I’ve only seen a few who can do it correctly.
    Cons, ears not split enough and they curl. Break easy, thick or to thin, get bondo to hot, cook skin and hair falls out. Real messy, can look terrible if not set right. Can look terrible.
    I’m a cartilage remover yep a pain at times but it gives a quality thin ear.
     
    Robert Baker, wa, GWebb and 7 others like this.

  3. Dennis Duffy

    Dennis Duffy Member

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    Thank you for responding Frank and I am absolutely not trying to stir anything up. I am a beginner myself and I ask this question only for learning purposes. I'm not saying one way is better than the other as I wouldn't know.
     
    Robert Baker likes this.
  4. I'm not even gonna wade off into pros or cons on either way. As it never ends well.
    What I will say is opnions will be biased, against the method they don't use or can't do. As mine would be also.
    Both can drum , both never will done correct
    One always fits, one needs help ever time to fit
    Both can receive damage if abused, or dropped and no other way.
    Both aren't any faster than the other, in Skilled proficient hands of their method.
    One is a LOT more forgiven than the other in unskilled handshands, but One , requires less skilled hands to achieve accuracy in shape.
    Both with have curled edges,if the ear wasn't prepared correct to start with, and both wasn't done correctly.
    Both are great choices for commercial work.
    Both you better know what the hell your doing in competition.
    One does cost a bit more than the other, which should be irrelevant, as the customer pays for it anyways.
    I do prefer one over the other, I'm more efficient with one than the other. I've used the ones I like less on hundreds of deer. But always revert back to my, BONDO.
    My point, others opnions should not be a decision maker, Try both ways, give each a honest equal try (several) times. One of them will
    Come out as the best choice for you.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2020
  5. joeym

    joeym Jeannette & Joey @ Dunn's Falls

    Bondo for me unless the ear is really ripped tho heck, and needs to be pieced back together. I've used both, but prefer bondo.
     
  6. HondaXR250

    HondaXR250 Well-Known Member

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    Ive never used ear liners but am going to try them here soon. Ive always wondered why you have to remove all the cartilage when using a liner?
     
    Dennis Duffy likes this.
  7. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    bondo ... you have front of ear bonded to back of ear... with liners you have front to liner rear to liner... twice as many laminated areas to fail or separate
     
    George and Micah Howards like this.
  8. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    I have done both many, many times over. I have quite a few mounts I have done for myself over the last 40 years and they are close to 50/50 on what I used for ears. Most of my first ones were Bondo and most, but not all, of the later ones were earliners.

    What I have found with Bondo is I have a little more difficulty getting the proper shape, where earliners always give me the proper shape. All but a couple of my Bondo ears have some sort of drumming issues. You can't tell by looking at them because they are minor, however, by feeling them, you can tell. My earliner ears have less drumming issues, however, the earlier you go in my taxidermy evolution, the more issues of drumming you can feel. The drumming is not noticeable by looking at them as the issue is usually at the ear canal.

    Drumming issues usually are a reflection of process failure rather than method for the most part in my opinion. All of my drumming, I suspect, was due to my failure to properly do a portion of the process because I do have both Bondo and earliners that have zero drumming and those are the ones I did with in the last 10 years.
     
    Micah Howards likes this.
  9. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member


    If you are leaving the cartilage in, then you are actually BONDING the back of the ear skin to the cartilage and the cartilage is ATTACHED to the front skin by "mother nature".
     
    Micah Howards likes this.
  10. Dennis Duffy

    Dennis Duffy Member

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    Hello yes and WE all know that, so what is your POINt?!
     
  11. joeym

    joeym Jeannette & Joey @ Dunn's Falls

    We also need to remember that Bondo doesn't "Bond" anything to anything. It's exactly what is say's on the can "body filler". George Roof will be proud of me for reminding ya'll of this! If you want to "bond" an ear, use an epoxy product. You better get it right the first time, because there are no second chances.
     
    Jackson1814 likes this.
  12. 13 point

    13 point Well-Known Member

    Ear liners on everything, I will pull , skin or sand if need be the cartilage off all ears and 97% of the time with no issues. I like the thin crisp edges, and details I get from a liner . I also like how my clay ear butts blend back in . I’m for ear liners but that’s just me . I’ve done a tun of bondo ears and still do on a few critters but don’t like the hassle of the bondo .
     
  13. Ron B

    Ron B Life Sucks.....Then comes the death roll!!!!

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    Use which ever method you feel comfortable with but I will say this: The "enlightened" use bondo! You can see and here things with bondo that you will never see or hear with plastic liners!
     
    Dennis Duffy likes this.
  14. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    I'm an earliner guy because I'm not a sculptor. I can get the guys who are sculptors to work for me for the price of a few bucks by using their product. HOWEVER, there are times that earliners are NOT the choice you have an option on. Groundhogs, beavers, otters, Cape buffalo, impala, coastal brown bears, nilgai, domestic goats, pigs, the list goes on. I grew up using sheet lead and then went to rat wire to those early plastic things that you had to punch holes through so the glue could stick to itself.
     
  15. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    The point is, I was responding to Byrdman not you. He said you have the front of the ear bonded to the back of the ear with Bondo and that is not true IF you have the cartilage in. The cartilage is attached the the front already. All you are bonding is the back skin to the cartilage.
     
    drob, Jordan Park and Dennis Duffy like this.
  16. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    cartilage -skin -apples -oranges.... highly doubtful that cartilage would separate from the skin... if you clean skin/cart. very well with some solvent then yes bondo will bond it grabs all the fibers on the other hand bondo wont stick to plastic liners.... some of the best I have ever used was celastic with epogrip... dont think they even make anymore...as for shape you just clamp an earliner to the outside after you bondo... hardest part is getting the thickness/thinness even oh and the bondo in the hair
     
    Tanglewood Taxidermy likes this.
  17. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    Research Mannikins makes a fabric earliner that is similar to celastic that works good with hide paste. I went to those for the last couple of years until I retired.
     
  18. HondaXR250

    HondaXR250 Well-Known Member

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    Ok...so what is the reason behind removing the cartilage?
     
  19. 13 point

    13 point Well-Known Member

    To make the ear thinner and plyable , also helps in having the ear skin glue directly to the liner , kinda like why we thin a hide out . Holds more detail , dries faster and better with more adhesion.
     
    Dingo.303 likes this.
  20. HondaXR250

    HondaXR250 Well-Known Member

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    Do you have to remove the cartilage with a liner? Because when using bondo, the ear will be thicker. So if its a liner with cartilage still in, it would still be thinner than bondo. Any reason to think the skin would separate from the cartilage after dry, causing drumming that way? Ive never shaved a hide either. Probably never will. I dont have anything to do it with.