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Preserving A Hare With Borax

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by Constance Morris, Mar 29, 2020.

  1. Constance Morris

    Constance Morris New Member

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    Complete newbie here, done a few garden birds, but not a mammal. I was reading on a thread on taxiderming rabbits that you can still use borax, and one member recommended soaking the skin in a borax solution. Can anyone broaden on this, what ratio borax to water!! How long to soak for, and do i just pat dry it to put on my form.

    Any help is greatly received. Thank you
     
  2. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    If your just going to mount it , no soaking needed but I’m not a fan of mounting it these way for mammals as o would recommend DP instead of plain borax .
    All you need to do is flesh as best as you can. Rub it on and mount it.
    Another method is soaking overnight in denatured alcohol.
     

  3. Constance Morris

    Constance Morris New Member

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    thank you very much, sorry it took me a while to work out how to find your response, whats DP, feel like such an idiot asking such simple questions.
     
  4. Fallenscale

    Fallenscale Well-Known Member

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    DP is dry preservative that contain antimicrobial agents. There are a few different one's on the market.
     
  5. Bruce M

    Bruce M Member

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    I didn't know either
     
  6. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    I think you need to get yourself some suppliers magazines and look into the chemical areas. It’ll give you some insight on what can be used.
     
    Bruce M likes this.
  7. Bruce M

    Bruce M Member

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    I will do that - thanks
     
  8. 15pt

    15pt Active Member

    The denatured alcohol would be my recommendation. Diluted 50/50.
     
  9. Bruce M

    Bruce M Member

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    After fleshing, soak in this for how long and then it's ready for mounting or would you tan it too?
     
  10. 15pt

    15pt Active Member

    Soak it overnight then mount it.
     
    Bruce M likes this.
  11. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Certainly denatured alcohol will work. I've used it many times, HOWEVER, DP (dry preservative) is a much better and SAFER choice. Denatured alcohol is irrevocably poisoned. It also gives off fumes that in a confined area will give you headaches, numbness in your fingers and other simply bad effects. Aside from those, it does shrink the hide a bit and you will still be face with blowdrying it or tumbling it to get the hair soft and fluffy. I have used DP up to and including coyote sized animals.
     
    Bruce M likes this.
  12. Bruce M

    Bruce M Member

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    Thanks George, I'm going to look into it. Up to this point, borax was the only form of DP I was aware of. And I need to keep all the brain cells I still have. I was considering pickling it...does pickling fully preserve or is there tanning required after pickling? I know I would have to neutralize after the pickle. Thanks
     
  13. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Now THERE'S a question that's going to stir the pot. I should avoid it, but why not make the forum resort to what it was once known for.
    IN MY OPINION, the only difference between pickling and tanning is that you replace one chemical with another inside the cellular structure. Sixty years ago, taxidermists all "pickle tanned" After the neutralizing, you just mounted the animal. Sadly, however, pickle tans proved to be ticking timebombs. Eventually the acids regained strength through humidity (sulfuric acid is H2SO4. Alum is KAl2(SO4)2.12H2O. Do you see water hidden in there somewhere?) Alum tans seemed to have been favored but the results long-term tended to be disastrous. Many museum pieces have been lost due to that process.

    As for the DP you have difficulty getting, it DOES contain borax. DP is made up of borax as an insecticide, alum as an astringent, and unscented talcum powder as a drying agent. Combinations of the three vary with some adding naphthalene (moth flakes or crystals). An easy combo would be 30% borax, 30% alum, and 40% talcum. Careful with the talcum as it is an ingredient that can create a lot of dusting and inhaling that crap can't be good for your lungs.
     
    Bruce M likes this.
  14. drob

    drob Active Member

    George,I've always used(and still do) just plain borax for my birds,small mammals ,etc.In you opinion is it better to go with the DP?