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Molding and Casting Artificial Bird Heads

Discussion in 'Tutorials' started by jeremy, Sep 12, 2007.

  1. Avian Art

    Avian Art Just a Bird Brain

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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Thanks yet again for the great info, taxos! :)

    I have a couple of pheasants coming that I want to try casting the heads on. I figure since I am learning everything, and all aspects of bird taxidermy are new to me, what can it hurt to start out by learning how to cast my own heads right from the beginning? After casting, I think I may even try to clean the skull, and leave a bit of it attached to the original beak. Then, I will reinsert the beak into the mold, and use the actual beak combined with the cast head. Is this a good idea?

    For my first duck (when I get to that point), I was thinking to use a cast head, including the cast bill, that first had the lamellae removed. I then intend to use the real lamellae, replacing them on the artificial bill, as so excellently demonstrated by wingman in his thread "Wing 'Tips' #23: Lamellae 'Transfer'".
    http://www.taxidermy.net/forum/index.php/topic,46407.0.html

    It has been asked by Turkeyman04, and I also wonder, would this casting method have satisfactory results on casting turkey heads? Has anyone tried this?

    I can't thank you all enough for the tremendous amount of information, inspiration, and help provided in the posts of this forum! After extensive study of the information so generously shared here, I actually have a bit of confidence that I may be able to pull off a successful self-study in bird taxidermy. I hope so at any rate. And if not, I am sure the fault will be mine, and not due to a lack of resources provided. The info is here, it just takes some searching, and occasionally asking to get it.

    Thank you,
    - Dave
     
  2. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    I have not tried this method with a turkey head as I love the freeze dried, as do my customers but that being said It would work but you will need to do something with the hairs on the head and the neck feathers as they will get trapped in the silicone and lock in the head, also be sure to spray on your syn-lube release. Do one and post the results for us.
     

  3. Turkeyman04

    Turkeyman04 New Member

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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    ok i will
    -thanks
     
  4. wildwings

    wildwings New Member

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Just want to say thanks for doing this again Jeremy. Right now I am in the middle of casting my first bird head. I got a swan in and the bill was pretty much still fresh so I figured what the heck lets try it. I know in the back of my mind then if something goes wrong atleast I can find a head for it. Any how so far the only thing I can see wrong is I got White silicone vs clear. Not too big of a mistake. Any how will I have to make a small cut on the underside of the head to get it out ? Thanks Again
     
  5. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Your welcome, im glad this post has helped so many. JKnuth is the one who inspired me to try it. Yes you will need to make 2 cuts down either side of the jowels and stop them before you get to the bill junction. Post up a pic when its done. Good luck.

    Jeremy
     
  6. Jubela

    Jubela Wallabies come in one flavor...Wallaby!

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Fantastic tutotial! I'm going to try this out!
     
  7. Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    you do rocks and logs same way mark c
     
  8. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Mark here is link to a rock I did awhile back using the same method.
    http://www.taxidermy.net/forum/index.php/topic,70234.0.html
     
  9. Lisa M

    Lisa M Swing like no one is watching...lol

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Totally nominated this for the (hopefully coming sooner than soon) Tutorial Category Jeremy. This is VERY helpful & I'll be doing a couple next week. Thank you SO much for taking the time to share your methods with us!
     
    lacy j likes this.
  10. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    your welcome, let us know how it worked out for you.
     
  11. DropTine

    DropTine DSCN0137.JPG

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Thank You for the wonderful post. I will have to try it out. Have you ever done any open mouthed Pheasants? Thank You Mark Binnebose
     
  12. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Hey Mark, your welcome. On all upland Ill use the real beak/skull, and on a open mouth I install a repro tounge. I get mine from Research Mannikins. Although I did cast this roosters head last month using the same method.
    [​IMG]
     
  13. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    I modified the post as some folks were having trouble with there pulls. I had a pic of the synlube in the thread but had failed to say it needed to be sprayed on the bill. Sorry for the confusion.
     
  14. wildwings

    wildwings New Member

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    OK so like I said I gave er a try and this is what I got. I got 2 rather nice Tundra Swan heads how ever on the 2nd head it kind got stuck and I got a little eager and ripped my mold which is fine I plan on sometime paying the big bucks for the RTV Rubber and cleaning up the better head and smoothing it out and making a Master mold. Any how here are a couple of pics the camera didn't like the plastic. Also I used the Smooth Cast 300 cant believe how expensive it was $25 for a Pint kit next time I will get the bigger one.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  15. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Welldone wildwings, I found if your not in a big hurry then dont mix the silicon with paint because it weakens it quit a bit. Instead just reinforce with straight silicon. You will get a stronger mold, also be sure and use the release on the bill and I squirt it into the mold before I cast it, this will help. One other thing remeber to pull straight out and use a slight twisting motion rather the trying to peel the mold away. I have a couple of silicon molds that I have pulled over 20 times and stillgoing strong.
     
  16. wildwings

    wildwings New Member

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Yeah I got in a hurry I pulled the 2nd head pretty much right after it turned hard. It was late and I was wanting to see if the 2nd pull was better. (I had a little bubble spot) Also I wasn't sure about using the lube in the casting part so I didn't use any since I didn't know if it would effect the Smooth Cast or not. Any how I would rather clean the 1 up and cast the master mold again anyhow the other is going on the Swan. Next time I will do something a bit smaller :)

    Ps I don't know about you guys but I screwed a screw to the back of the head to pull it out easier.
     
  17. FeatherHorn

    FeatherHorn New Member

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    hey Jeremy, I trie to cast a fowled up repro duck head that I had laying around the house and the silicone stuck to it like glue, I had to shave it off piece by piece with a knife. I followed your instructions word for word step by step and even let it cure for two days instead of one. What went wrong?
     
  18. jeremy

    jeremy Have you hugged your snake today!

    3,022
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    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Hey Featherhorn, here is a link that may answer your questions, you must have missed it. http://www.taxidermy.net/forum/index.php/topic,80287.0.html
     
  19. Gobblingfever

    Gobblingfever 100% PEER GOBBLER ADDICTION!!!!

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Anyone tried turkey heads? I would like to for decoys for myself. Would be neat to learn and play around with. Also My 6 year old wants all my turkey heads so I could make and paint them for his room.
     
  20. FeatherHorn

    FeatherHorn New Member

    Re: For those that want to try to cast heads but havent yet.

    Jeremy, read through your post again, didn't know you had to make the cut down the sides, but Ialso read where you said that the silicone would not stick to anything except glass and something else that i can't recall right now. I sprayed the head with a good coat of release agent and like I said, I had to pry it off in little pieces. Are you saying that the head I tried to cast might have had glass on another product in it so you would have trouble making a cast?