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Thread: Anyone does Velvet Preservation in Fairbanks

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Default Anyone does Velvet Preservation in Fairbanks

    Brought back a nice Caribou last week, full Velvet, just read the thread on preserving and they wont fit in my freezer.
    I know draining and injecting formaldhyde is one way........
    I would like to take it it to someone and have it done, anyone in Faribanks that does this.........?
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

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    Member Lone Wolf1's Avatar
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    Check wih RJ at ProTaxidermy.

    I'm sure he does it:

    http://protaxidermy.com/

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    Moderator stid2677's Avatar
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    Al, at the Fairbanks tannery is the only one that does velvet in Fairbanks that I know of. I had a set done a few years ago and they look just like the day I shot him. I heard Al was out guiding for a few days so call before you drive out there. You will need to slit the rack to fit in the tank. I cut mine in a V so they fit back together like they came off.
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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Thanks guys, Al is still out and I left a message for RJ.....
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
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    RJ does them all the time, I know he hada contract last year with an outfitter and did a ton of them. You WILL NOT get better service than his in Fairbanks period. Do your research!

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    I did connect with RJ, unfortunately I did not get them to him soon enough and he will need to strip them.
    I dont get too excited about horn preservation, its mostly about the meat.
    However my wife said "gee, those will look great in the stairwell", next time I will take better care if I go early and get one in full velvet, It was a pretty nice rack.......still is I guess just w/o the velvet......
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
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    Sponsor protaxidermy's Avatar
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    Thanks guys for the recomendations.

    Yes we Do tan Velvet in our studio.

    We Inject & Soak , They come out Great as long as they are not spoiled before they get to us.

    We did 75 Caribou in Velvet last year.

    We did have to reject a couple last year, but I would rather be straight with the guy upfront , than take their money & have a Stinkin set of antlers after they are mounted.

    That is a stink you never get use to.

    We have 35 Bou in this year so far. Looks like a good year again.

    If your going out just make sure you keep the antlers cool & if possible in the shade.

    As soon as you get back to town call Me & I can get started on them ASAP. Even after hours if needed.

    We CAN tan Antlers without splitting the skull plate because we inject before we soak, & we rotate them every day. & Yes i charge more for unsplit.

    That way your Boone & Crocket scores will be valid for entry.

    Call me any time.
    RJ Simington
    541 281 7201 My CEll

    PS : HI MORGAN !!

    Are you going up north again this year ??

    Take care guys.

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    Member Tearbear's Avatar
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    Default Antler Care

    A few more tips on antler care...if you think you may want to have your velvet preserved you should give it the same care as you would the meat, keeping it cool, and getting it to your taxidermist as soon as possible, (same as a cape or rug) it's not a bad idea to check with who you want doing the work to see how busy they are & if they have room for it. While transporting your rack from the field, make sure you don't tie it down anywhere on the antler, or let it rub on anything, as this will damage the velvet. Depending on when the particular animal will be shedding it's velvet matters also, close to shedding, the velvet is not attached to the antler very well any more, and all it takes is to grab it and you have a chunk of velvet in your hand

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    If it is still mid August or earlier, I would suggest poking the tip of your knife into each antler tip and inverting the antlers in a tree or brush to get as much blood to drain out as possible. You might have to repoke the tips to get the blood flowing again in the morning, but you will be surprised at how much blood is in the antlers. Be careful poking the tips as you don't want to cut off any part of the antler or your finger. I don't go much futher than a 1/4" into the tip of each antler.

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    Sponsor protaxidermy's Avatar
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    Well we just got a Caribou in that the guy said he took care of the antlers in the feild, " So they should be ok"

    When I grabbed the Velvet antlers out of his truck I could feel something moving under the velvet.

    Turned out to be Maggots.

    After showing him the crawling little buggers & him almost throwing up, He said :

    I poked the tips to let em drain & hung em upside down against my tent for 6 days, They sure did bleed all over the side of my tent.

    Well , Now that we have stripped all the velvet off, the bez & a couple other points are Green.

    GOODY. Just what I wanted to deal with today.

    Dawn soap & Hot water soak over night. Atleast now I can handle them without smelling like a sespool.

    Just Draining the blood or Freeze drying the blood without any preservative, Will not keep the bugs from trying to eat the protein in the blood that is left in the Velvet skin & veins.

    RJ Simington

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by stid2677 View Post
    Al, at the Fairbanks tannery is the only one that does velvet in Fairbanks that I know of. I had a set done a few years ago and they look just like the day I shot him. I heard Al was out guiding for a few days so call before you drive out there. You will need to slit the rack to fit in the tank. I cut mine in a V so they fit back together like they came off.
    had kiddos set done last year by AL. and they are great!
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Sponsor protaxidermy's Avatar
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    Al soaks his like we do to make sure the preseving chemicals will kill all of the protein thats left in the antlers.

    RJ Simington

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    I just got my first Caribou, a small bull, and would like to preserve the velvet. How much does something like that run?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Akgramps View Post
    I did connect with RJ, unfortunately I did not get them to him soon enough and he will need to strip them.
    I dont get too excited about horn preservation, its mostly about the meat.
    However my wife said "gee, those will look great in the stairwell", next time I will take better care if I go early and get one in full velvet, It was a pretty nice rack.......still is I guess just w/o the velvet......
    May I ask how long did you wait to take them? And what was the main reason why they had to be stripped. Just wanting to learn. I just took some down south to the taxidermist but was able to get them to him within 48 hours and they were cool and shady the entire time....BUT I also killed him the last day so I did not have to deal with them in the field.

    Just wondering...thanks

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    Member Akgramps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NDH View Post
    May I ask how long did you wait to take them? And what was the main reason why they had to be stripped. Just wanting to learn. I just took some down south to the taxidermist but was able to get them to him within 48 hours and they were cool and shady the entire time....BUT I also killed him the last day so I did not have to deal with them in the field.

    Just wondering...thanks
    From the time the animal was down to the time I got back to town was 6 days, the miggest mistake I made was not removing the skin off of the skull cap and cleaning that up better to be less attractive to blow flys, then when I got back to town I didnt get them turned in immediately. So clean them, keep them wet, drain them maybe spray to keep the bugs off.........? Maybe RJ can chime in here and lay out what the hunter can do......

    I was not that interested in the horns and was just going to nail them up on the shed untill my wife took note and commented how they would look in the house, by then it was too late, so oh well, will need to do it again and see if I can get another nice set......
    “Nothing worth doing is easy”
    TR

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    Member Vince's Avatar
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    day one (late)


    day two later then day one.. they were tuckered..


    day three was flying out and made it to cold foot for night at midnite ish...

    day four drive home and un pack late in day....



    called every taxi in town and got hold of Al morning of day five... so far nothing but cool air on antlers





    and both girls bulls side by side


    all in all i am happy with how they came out, we would have loved to cape her first big bull, but the circumstance did not allow for it as we had 4 to pack when he walked up at 11 pm,,,
    "If you are on a continuous search to be offended, you will always find what you are looking for; even when it isn't there."

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    Member akiceman25's Avatar
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    Just thought I'd bump this one up.

    Would anyone like to add to proper field care for antlers in velvet? I'd like to have a mount done with the velvet intact. Assuming I'm successful on my Aug 1st Kodiak deer hunt.
    I am serious... and don't call me Shirley.

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    Member JuliW's Avatar
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    The biggest thing is to be gentle with them and get them in a freezer asap (and keep them cool until then). You don't need to salt them or 'bleed' them out from the tips. The veins are biggest at the base of the antler and if you can find those ones, a very small 'needle incision' in those veins near the burr will help the blood drain out. Also keep them upright so that the blood can go from the tips to the bases. However, I don't think I would bother trying to drain blood from deer antlers, if you can get them to a freezer or cooler in a matter of a day or two.

    Also - if velvet is in the process of coming off, or very near being shed, odds are that it won't be able to be 'saved'. The best antlers to preserve in velvet are the ones that the tips have hardened but the velvet is still 'tight' on.

    I preserved the velvet on two of my sons' caribou racks using an injection method a few yrs ago and they came out nicely. I was not able to save the velvet on the third bull, because he had already started to lose velvet in large strips. All three bulls were shot on the same day but were at slightly different stages of antler development.
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