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What Could Go Wrong? No, Seriously. What Could Go Wrong? Life Size Mount Questions.

Discussion in 'Lifesize Mammals' started by ehanpaul8, Oct 12, 2020.

  1. ehanpaul8

    ehanpaul8 New Member

    I am working on my very first life size mount that I skinned and tanned myself. I already know for a fact it will not last forever due to it being my first real attempt at this.

    I've read so much about what to do and what not to do, but not a lot of explanation about what happens when certain steps havent been done properly. What can you save, and what is beyond saving? And how to know what went wrong.
    omegle xender

    A friend found and gave me a grey fox. So I skinned him, salted him twice over 2 days, then put him in a pickle. I did my best to flesh the hide, but there is definitely still some membrane there. Then a neutralizing bath and a good wash.

    The hide got to be partially dry, and this is when I noticed some slippage at the ears and tip of the tail (which seems to be common in noobs with foxes), but everything else seemed to be holding beautifully. I decided to salt and borax the ears and tail again in a last-stitch effort to preserve whatever fur I could, so fingers crossed.
    omegle xender
    Last edited: Oct 12, 2020
  2. Mike Powell

    Mike Powell Well-Known Member

    Predators, particularly foxes, are notorious for slippage especially around the ears, I think because of the bacteria particular to these predators. It is important to keep them dry and cool, and to skin them as soon as possible. I use stop rot before and after the skinning process. Salting quickly is also important. Salt prohibits the growth of bacteria and sucks the liquids out of the skin helping to set the hair. You mentioned soaking in a pickle...the ph level needs to be maintained below a 2; hides need to stay in the pickle bath long enough to thoroughly pickle them. Hides in the pickle need to be moved around and repositioned daily to make sure all areas are being accessed by the pickle. Once pickled, neutralized, thinned and washed they need to be tanned. You didn’t mention that step at all.
    There are a number of variables that can affect a hide; heat, moisture and time are your enemies.You need to gather as much information as possible - just as you are doing with this post. You need to use good pickle/tanning products that are compatible and use them as directed. Read and watch videos to learn correct procedures, but it is experience that will be your best teacher. Trial and error, using different products and finding out what works best for you. The truth is, there are times when you do everything right and you still have slippage. With time you learn to minimize the occurrences, I rarely have slippage these days, but it does occur occasionally.
    Megan :), ARUsher and Westcoast like this.