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Turkey Skin Question

Discussion in 'Bird Taxidermy' started by Dad of 9, Jun 11, 2020.

  1. Dad of 9

    Dad of 9 Member

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    I soaked a turkey in laquer thinner and then dried. The feathers aren't fluffing very well! Is there a way to get the feathers back to what they should be? Thanks in advance for ideas!
    Dad of 9
     
  2. Leonard "Tazman" Qualls

    Leonard "Tazman" Qualls Active Member

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    Go thru the bath process again with Dawn etc...
    Then soak it in camp gas. (Walmart) Then wring it out and tumble (if you do this step) then blow dry.
    The camp gas will separate the water from it real good, and help you get it dried up nicely.
     

  3. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    I guess old tricks are hard to kick. I stopped using gas 40 years ago. If you're working in your basement or in a closed shop, leave the gas for the camp stove. Wash your bird, squeeze dry (if you have a washing machine that you can use the "spin" cycle on, do that instead.) Tumble your bird in good corn cob grit or hardwood sawdust. Shake the sawdust out and then with shop air, blow the inner down feathers until they're fluffy and the coverts and primaries look natural. Mount your bird and then use a blow-dryer set on "warm". Gently use your hand to push feathers forward as you blow dry them.
     
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2020
  4. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    I do what George suggests and I like it much better than when I used gas. Make sure you rinse, rinse, rinse. Your final rinse bath should not have a single bubble floating in it and when fully submerged, the down should look fluffy and the feathers should almost look as though it were mounted and not clumped together.
     
    bucksnort10 and Sleepyhollow like this.
  5. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    I use Tide detergent to wash my turkeys. After washing and rinsing I use Liquacure for "tanning" and degreasing, then hang the bird up by its wings to help me blow dry the feathers. Like George and Tanglewood said, you have to get the down feathers completely dry or it will never get fluffy.
    17.jpg
     
  6. GotHonks

    GotHonks Well-Known Member

    Have had too many Turkeys to mount this year and pretty sick of them right now .... Never used gas , I use Dawn 3 or 4 washes and 5 of 6 rinse with water till no more bubbles in water then , spin water out in washer then to the dryer on med for bout an hr on med ... Comes out nice and fluffy ... Still need to run the blow dryer after I mount the bird a little from me wetting the skin if need be .. I don't wanna sit there blowing a bird dry for 3 or 4 hrs , the dryer kicks ass ... Take off your wings first or they'll get beat up .... Badly .... My buddy who has mounted hundreds of turkeys over the yrs don't wash the wings nor tails unless they're bloody (crazy) .. all I can say is Have fun , Turkeys are a lot of work compared to waterfowl , I've got one left to do before I pack up taxidermy till mid fall and start stick fish ... Salmon will be here shortly , probably already in the system can't fish for them till July 16 th ..... Can't wait ....
     
    BO-N-ARO likes this.
  7. joeym

    joeym Old Murphey

    Do not use Dawn on turkeys or any other upland game bird. Use Tide, or any cheap granulated laundry detergent. Rinse once after washing. Hang the bird to drip dry (or place in a washer on spin cycle as George recommended). Towel dry, then use a hair dryer to finish the process. You can throw all the hot air you want at a turkey while drying...they are tough, and will not slip if you don't stay in one area too long. Dawn is for greasy waterfowl. As for gas or camp fuel, don't waste your time and money. They are a risk to your health and life.
     
    Turkey slayer and GotHonks like this.
  8. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    I have fleshed turkeys that would put a pen raised pheasant or a December killed bear to shame.
     
  9. Wally Gator

    Wally Gator Well-Known Member

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    That is the first time I have heard anyone suggest against using Dawn. Why do you not use it on particular birds? I’m not challenging you, just curious. Tim Jordan uses Dawn. Thanks
     
  10. GotHonks

    GotHonks Well-Known Member

    Because , Turkeys aren't nearly as greasy or fat as waterfowl ... Sounds like The cloth wash detergent is easier to wash out of the feathers ... Have to try it sometime .... Most of the fat on Turkeys is the Gobble box and in the feather tracks along the back at least those are the areas I use the wheel for on Turkeys ... Been fine so far no greasy spots on them ...
     
  11. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

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    dawn will take out blood and dirt as well as fat/grease NOTHING wrong with dawn on upland.... listen to George
     
    magicmick, Rausch and George like this.
  12. Tanglewood Taxidermy

    Tanglewood Taxidermy Well-Known Member

    Fall hens are full of thick fat (se my previous post)...and pin feathers. They do need dawn. The only time I washed a turkey in tide, the feathers came out rather dull looking and I was not satisfied with the out come. When I wash with Dawn they come out shiny and squeaky clean and smell really nice. I prefer Dawn.
     
    Sleepyhollow and Wildthings like this.
  13. byrdman

    byrdman Well-Known Member

    8,890
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    and dont forget to pull tendons out of bottom of feet... more room for wire... less smell... remove food for bugs
     
    George and Wally Gator like this.
  14. turkeyshooter

    turkeyshooter Member

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    How many birds can you preserve before you have to discard the liquacure?
     
  15. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    On the average 6-10 birds depending on how much slime is in the bucket. I use a 5 gal pail with a screw-on lid to store it. I think the Liquacure could keep working but the slime it removes can start to build p and you dont want that back on the feathers. I've tried scooping out the slime and you can get some out but not all. I don't mix my waterfowl or fish in the same solution as the turkeys, either. I just make a fresh batch.
    Pails.jpg
     
  16. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Now I gotta ask: why would you spend that kind of money on Liquicure. Once a bird, any bird, is properly cleaned, washed, and dried, borax or dry preserve (my preference), the skin will dry quicker.
     
  17. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    I don't like the powder all over the skin and don't want the skin to dry out as I need to taxi the skin. Liquacure is my preservative. I don't "spend" any money without a return on my investments. Any investments. The cost of the Liquacure is figured into my overhead and I get $1100 for turkeys (and I may be raising that to $1300 in the spring!) I have nine more skins waiting for me in the freezer.
     
    George and webster like this.
  18. turkeyshooter

    turkeyshooter Member

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    I'm sure it's on the instructions but how long do you soak the bird in liquacure after washing?
     
  19. socalmountainman

    socalmountainman Northwestern School of Taxidermy - Class of '73

    The instructions on the label say minimum 2 hours for birds and 4 hours for fish. Sorry, only get on this site every so often. You can always PM me or email me if you would like. :)