Glue for antlers?

Muskeez

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I shot a small mule deer in velvet in WY last Sept., I kept the antlers cool until I got home, then cut them off the skull and tried an odd tactic to preserve the velvet. It was a small buck so I thought What the heck, I'll give it a try...A friend of my daughter's shared how a taxidermist friend of his soaks antlers for clients in gasoline for 10 days then dries them for like 20 days. I actually have had them "Drying" and airing out on the patio all winter. The velvet has stayed on and doesn't smell now. We'll see how they smell and hold up when I get them in the house. In the meanwhile I did a euro mount/boil of the skull. Now I need to glue the antlers back onto the skull. Has anyone done this part? I'm wondering what type of glue to use. thanks for any advice!
 

madtom

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Not to be a stickler, but I hope you removed the brain from the skull before you left Wyoming. No specific advice about glue, but I'd guess most any cyanoacrylate product will work well on a porous material like bone.
 

LopeHunter

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I use 2-part epoxy. Wear rubber gloves as mix as epoxy stains skin. I prefer an epoxy that has about 5 minutes from when mix until is setting up so have some time to get the epoxy in place but will not have to hold the antlers for very long as dries. If the antlers were sawn off then I drill a hole to hold a stainless wire about 1/8" diameter into the antler base and the skull so the wire helps align everything as dries. I then use taxidermy 2-part putty to conceal the seam. If antlers popped off then simply epoxy into place.
 

Muskeez

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No worries there Madtom, did the best I could anyway, and thanks for the ideas on the glues guys!
 

NYSKIER

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This is a very interesting tactic with the gasoline. I know this post is over a month old but can you let us know how it panned out?
 

ElkFever2

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I use 2-part epoxy. Wear rubber gloves as mix as epoxy stains skin. I prefer an epoxy that has about 5 minutes from when mix until is setting up so have some time to get the epoxy in place but will not have to hold the antlers for very long as dries. If the antlers were sawn off then I drill a hole to hold a stainless wire about 1/8" diameter into the antler base and the skull so the wire helps align everything as dries. I then use taxidermy 2-part putty to conceal the seam. If antlers popped off then simply epoxy into place.
This is my method. The epoxy withstands like 2000 lbs of static force. Make sure the pieces are cleaned with a brush or compressor first to get a nice tight bond
 

Bambistew

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Drill the skull and antlers and pin it with square stock or threaded rod. Use bondo. Paint it up with acrylic paint.
 

Ajax2744

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We use Bondo in our shop. Every caribou we get in we have to glue antlers on because they have to be cut for the flights. A square pin will make it so they won't twist. Before the Bondo is completely dry peel off any excess that squirted out. Paint with acrylic to cover the cut line. I would recommend doing a few trial runs with mixing the Bondo so you understand how quick it dries. It really sucks having Bondo cure before antlers are set perfectly.
 

HiMtnHntr

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Epoxy sculpt, ivory color is what I use. Then paint to blend it in. I did a velvet euro this way and it looks great (if I do say so myself!)... good luck with the gasoline. My experience with gas on stuff is it never stops smelling like gas! I use velvet tan.
 

Muskeez

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HiMtn, Can you expand on the "velvet Tan" ? What is it and where do you get it? Is it a soaking process?
The gasoline process has worked well for me. Granted they stayed outside on my porch all winter and spring long to air out but the wife and I do not notice any smell of gasoline or rotting flesh. They stayed pretty "fuzzy" and look decent. One antler moved a little as the 2 part epoxy dried and I have a small gap at the skull making the one side lean in ever so slightly but its not noticeable unless pointed out.
 

HiMtnHntr

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You can get velvet tan from various taxidermy supply stores. Van Dykes has it and has instructions for it's use. Depending on stage of velvet it can be injected and rubbed on and dried.
 

Ajax2744

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Also for future jobs, if you can find someone close who can freeze dry velvet it looks 1000x better than any soaking or brush on antler in Velvet tan.
 

Muskeez

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Well, I suck at loading pics so it's huge for some reason, but you can see how the one antler didn't stay in position when the glue at the base dried. Only slight lean in, so oh well, lesson learned. Velvet looks great IMO and has zero odor of any kind at this point.
 
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