Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 35

Thread: Anyone know of a good Skull Cleaning Place?

  1. #1

    Default Anyone know of a good Skull Cleaning Place?

    Hi guys
    I was wondering if anyone new of someone that cleans skulls for a Reasonable Price and does a good job. I was going to try to do it my self but would hate to wreck it. Thanks for your help. In the Anchorage area.

  2. #2
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    1,927

    Default

    I took a moose skull plate over to Knight's and they cleaned it up for me for $10 a couple years ago. I don't know how they would handle a whole skull. You might give them a call.
    344-5501

    If you take some reasonable precautions, you can't wreck it. The mistake most make is to boil it too long, then it sometimes falls apart. The teeth will also come out but they are easy to glue back in. I have the name Knight's uses, its Arm and Hammer stuff you can get at the grocery but I can't remember the specific item. I can look at the box tonight.

  3. #3
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    16

    Default skull clean

    hey gunner---go to pennsylvania hunting forum--in the FOR SALE section a gent has some cleaning beatles for sale

  4. #4

    Default

    Hunter Fisher Taxidermy in Anchorage does a great job at a fair price.

  5. #5
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    97

    Default Dermestid beetles

    There is a guy in the valley that has beetles. I can't remember his name right now. These beetles are used in all museums for cleaning skulls. You can purchase them on-line yourself and start your own colony but don't get them in the house or you mounts may become trash....

    Alternatively, if you have access to a good pressure washer and the skull is fresh, this works well.

  6. #6
    New member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    140

    Default Beetles...

    Quote Originally Posted by Boss Gobbler View Post
    There is a guy in the valley that has beetles. I can't remember his name right now. These beetles are used in all museums for cleaning skulls. You can purchase them on-line yourself and start your own colony but don't get them in the house or you mounts may become trash....

    Alternatively, if you have access to a good pressure washer and the skull is fresh, this works well.

    Do not just start up a beetle colony without doing your homework..it's not just as easy as raising beetles sounds. If ONE gets out in your house (or garage and clings to your coat when you go inside your house)...bye bye mounts.

    I 100% agree with the pressure washer...by far the easiest and fastest way to clean a skull.

  7. #7
    Member akpredator's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    anchorage
    Posts
    112

    Thumbs up I got bugs

    i have a bug colonie that i have had for about two years now but the only drawback for me is that i cant realy do anything with antlers till i build a larger incloser(Im in the prosess of). so if you have a brown bear size skull i could probly help you out just shoot me a PM if your interested. heres some of the work i have done so you can get an idea.

    this was a mule deer i did for my father. only exseption on this antlered critter was the antlers were not that wide and fit in my tank


    and here are some skulls from the trapline last year


    I wont be back till monday or tuesday . Last chance to find a big bull.

    have a good one
    Todd
    LOVE MY LITTLE SKULL CLEANERS

  8. #8
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
    Posts
    5,645

    Default Dermestid Beetles

    Gunner,

    This came up a while back and I posted on a friend of mine who has Dermestid Beetles here in Anchorage. His name is Jed Crabb. Here's a re-post of my comments of 7/23 this year:

    "Be careful about boiling; if you overdo it, you could soften the skull itself. This is especially true of the thinner areas around the nose.

    An excellent alternative is the use of Dermestid Beetles. They eat flesh and will have your skull cleaned out pretty quickly, including the brain area that is so hard to deal with. The brain has a thin layer of fascia between the skull and the organ itself that can be difficult to remove.

    There are several folks around who can clean it up with beetles for you. If you're near Anchorage, you might give Jed Crabb a shout. He's been doing this a while.

    I would be extremely leery of burying it in the ground; that's where things rot. There are tannins there from leaves, and all sorts of other things that will discolor the skull permanently.

    Several treatments for whitening the skull have already been listed, so I'll not comment there, except to say that some animals that have a higer level of body fat (bears, for example) may discolor in the thicker parts of the skull. I have a grizzly skull from a bear I shot in the high Arctic about 15 years ago, and the back part of the skull near the Atlas vertebrae is all brownish. The rest of the skull is white."


    Hope it helps!

    -Mike

    Quote Originally Posted by Gunner1 View Post
    Hi guys
    I was wondering if anyone new of someone that cleans skulls for a Reasonable Price and does a good job. I was going to try to do it my self but would hate to wreck it. Thanks for your help. In the Anchorage area.
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  9. #9
    Moderator Alaskacanoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Sterling
    Posts
    1,443

    Default skulls and bones

    Alot of the skull work is done on the Kenai by Kenny at "SKULLS AND BONES", He uses the beetles and how he keeps them trapped is in old huge Chest freezers. The beetles have trouble escaping these Chest freezers and Big Antlers fit even if you have to tip them around a bit. Kenny puts heavy weights on the lid, and a hasp lock , so it does not get opened unless he opens it, and has a small air vent in the top made with fine mesh screen.

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Fairbanks
    Posts
    326

    Default

    So how do you get all the beetles off when you remove the skulls? Seems like that would be the time they'd hide in a little crack and escape?

    Just curious.

  11. #11
    Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Anchorage
    Posts
    555

    Default

    They all come off when you soak the skull in the whitenins solution or you can soak in water for a minute to get them all off.

  12. #12
    webmaster Michael Strahan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 1999
    Location
    Anchorage, Alaska
    Posts
    5,645

    Default Getting rid of beetles

    Quote Originally Posted by FarmerGrant View Post
    So how do you get all the beetles off when you remove the skulls? Seems like that would be the time they'd hide in a little crack and escape?

    Just curious.
    Grant,

    The link to the article I posted indicated that freezing or boiling will kill them. At that point, you may have to pick some of them out of the brain cavity and nasal area and other tight spots. After cleaning with beetles, it's common practice to degrease the skull (especially bears) and whiten them with bleach or something else.

    -Mike
    LOST CREEK COMPANY: Specializing in Alaska hunt consultation and planning for do-it-yourself hunts, fully outfitted hunts, and guided hunts.
    CLICK HERE to send me a private message.
    Web Address: http://alaskaoutdoorssupersite.com/hunt-planner/
    Mob: 1 (907) 229-4501
    "Dream big, and dare to fail." -Norman Vaughan
    "I have climbed my mountain, but I must still live my life." - Tenzig Norgay

  13. #13
    Member fullkurl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Alaska/Idaho
    Posts
    2,155

    Default great info....

    Thanks for posting it Mike.



    fk

  14. #14
    New member Jerry Lancaster's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    42

    Default

    Dont use bleach, it will cause the skull to become chalky, go to a beauty supply store and get the strongest peroxide they have or can get. Do your own skulls is both rewarding and cheap, I got qouted over 3 hundred bucks to do a european mount for my first bou.

    I've done lots of skulls, mostly hogs and Alligators. Fire ants are presently working on my Bou now. I have 100% peroxide and after the bugs are done the peroxide will eat the rest off as long as it's kept somewhat moist. Goodluck.

    If you decide to use bleach just make sure its a weak solution.

  15. #15
    Member BearSlayer's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    North Pole Alaska
    Posts
    147

    Question Anyone near Fairbanks

    Did anyone ever find someone near Fairbanks that uses beetles to clean skulls? I am currently looking for someone in the area. thanks

  16. #16
    Member Casper50's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Sterling
    Posts
    592

    Default

    AK do you have a number for Kenny or a way for me to get in contact with him? He's not listed in the phone book under taxidermy or Skulls & Bones. Thanks

  17. #17
    Moderator Alaskacanoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Sterling
    Posts
    1,443

    Default kenny at Skulls and bones

    I will get his number and pass it on.
    He has my sons Brown bear from last fall done and I need to go pick it up.
    Kenny lives down Gas Well road just off K-Beach. if you go straight down Gas well, don't make any turns. He is on the right side of the road after you leave the pavement.
    Max
    When you come to a fork in the trail, take it!

    Rentals for Canoes, Kayaks, Rafts, boats serving the Kenai canoe trail system and the Kenai river for over 15 years. www.alaskacanoetrips.com

  18. #18
    Member Casper50's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Location
    Sterling
    Posts
    592

    Default

    Thanks Max. I have a brown bear that I need to get done also.

  19. #19
    Member
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    somewhere wild
    Posts
    43

    Default

    Kenny jones is a pretty nice guy. I was fortunate enough to meet him this fall. He has my black bear skull. He also did the fleshing of the hide and dropped it at Alpha fur dressors for me. I already have the hide back didnt take long at all.

    if it is ok here is Kenny's info.

    Skulls and Bones by Kenny Jones
    48640 jones rd
    soldotna alaska 99669
    907-260-6592

  20. #20

    Default Alternative method

    I might have missed what kind of skull you are trying to clean. I've been doing my own skulls now for a few years. To clean sheep skulls, you first need to soak the head in order to pop the horns off the skull, this year, after the horns came off the skull, I didn't have time to get to it right away,so I just left the skull soaking in a large garbage can full of water. Think I left it in there for 6 weeks. When I took it out the rotted flesh just all peeled off. The intricate nasal passages especially came out really well. After that I soak in a sloution of water and borax to get any remaining bits. I then soak in a degreaser (times vary depending on skull type). Iuse Coleman fuel for this. Final step is soak in 40% peroxide. BTW-surprisingly this method wasn't as stinky as you'd think. I guess the water in the can contained the smell. You do need to plan ahead on what to do with the water when you are done.

Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •