Contributors to this thread:
Best skull cleaning company?
Who do you recommend to send a skull for cleaning? Cow bison if it matters.
MOA in Conesville does a pretty darn good job Don. Ive seen alot of their work while measuring, and i would be pleased with it. If i get a mt. lion this year thats where i will be sending the skull
Rocky Mountain Head Hunters in Northern Colorado
I absolutely get the best end results out in my garage. Once you figure out how to do it right then there is really no one that can do it better.
Sorry this is not the info you were seeking.
I’m with Scrappy, Euro mounts are pretty easy to do yourself.
Obviously some of you have never done a Buffalo skull
^^^^ Agree Cnelk. (but to change the topic, that's a trophy mop you got hanging next to your skulls!)
Skulls Unlimited if you don't have a local beetle guy.
What’s unique about a Buffalo skull? Is it just the size, or something else that makes them more difficult than, say, a bull elk skull?
^^^ pulling the horns off, and they have a lot of grease in the skull. Takes a long time.
Matt at Rocky Mtn Head Hunters has done the #1 World Record PNY Brown Bear skull. He’s not just some smuck that boils heads in his garage
Yeah, only a “smuck” would boil a skull in a garage. That stuff stinks! Always boil them outdoors, if you can. :-)
A combination of Dawn dishwashing soap and Oxi Clean works well to prevent the greases from staining the skull.
Lost Arra's Link
Keep up the good work pilgrim. You’ll get there
Skulls Unlimited without question. I've done the skull stew method but I'm fortunate to be 30 minutes from Skulls Unlimited so shipping is not a factor for me. No one cleans more skulls and skeletons. If there could be a criticism it's their skulls are almost too perfect, museum quality work.
they have actually horns...not antlers. You have to pull the sheaths and clean, then reattach.
Another vote for skulls unlimited. I normally do my own euros but had them do my first antelope buck because I was worried about screwing it up. They do quality work.
Thanks, I’ve been pleased with my end results. The key is to add more Dawn and Oxi Clean when it stops foaming up. And don’t over simmer, or they’ll get brittle. 3 hours is about right for an elk skull. After that a light power wash will remove the remaining tissue. I like the bleached look, so I soak mine in 40 volume peroxide cream for 4-5 days after simmering and cleaning.
Another vote for Rocky Mountain Headhunters if you aren't up to the hassle of DIY.
Thanks guys! I have nothing against some hard work but every time I consider boiling a skull myself I look into it and very quickly change my mind :-)
Don, I’ve done plenty of skulls at home. They really aren’t that bad. Put the bison skull in a black garbage bag for a couple days and the sheaths will pop off. Then simmer like Greyghost says, Powerwash, and peroxide. A couple hours work and all done.
Lost Arra's Link
Thank guys! Skulls unlimited says I need to clean brains out, and I believe also cape it out? I am hoping to send in a whole head and do nothing except freeze & ship from WY. This frees up baggage for bringing meat home.
Do CWD requirements (no brain or spinal cord) carry over to bison or maybe all animals?
I added a link to Mike Rowe visiting Skulls Unlimited
If you think they’re easy you aren’t doing them the way I prefer them.
Big Sky Beetleworks Stevensville Montana
Rocky Mountain Head Hunters, CO. Matt is a good dude.
I WOULD recommend Scrappy’s Skull Emporium, but he seems to keep relocating….
Thank guys! Skulls unlimited says I need to clean brains out, and I believe also cape it out?
Seems reasonable to me. Do you have an issue with that? Or are you used to having someone else do all the dirty work for you?
I clean mine as best I can and then give them to my buddy to finish. He does a great job. In turn, I plant his food plots on the lease we’re on together. YouTube is your friend.
Buffalo are a lot of work if you want real nice results. Some guys are ok with a little grease or staining. Most taxidermists have connections to a beetle cleaner. If they are any good it will come back cleaned and well degreased. Fresh most skulls look fine but months and years down the road makes a difference if it's not done right.
The notion that beetles and some “secret potions” are the only way to do a quality stain-free and stink-free Euro mount cracks me up.
Sheep hunting must being going tough if you don't have anything better to do than degrading someone over them preferring to have someone else do their euro mount.
Don - There's a young guy with nice young family not too far from you I found last year and he did my skull (photo attached) from last season... I dropped it off with hide on and brains in... Took just a little less than 4 months...
He did a great job, (best I ever had done) he left all the natural antler colors... He not really a taxidermist, and seems to just work out of his garage only doing skulls, maybe tan hides I think is how he got started, charged me only $125... Nice guy....
He's located a couple miles or so just east of Canton-Akron Airport, near Boettler Park easily accessible off I77 probably around 10 minutes off I77 exits... He has a North Canton address, if you need it message me, but can be contacted off his future web address: beetlesandbones.com
Thanks for your continued concern about my hunt, John. That means a lot to me. I'd be happy to give you a personal update, if you really care.
Matt, I think his point is that you came across like an asshole in this thread. Not sure if it was intentional or not, but that’s how it came across to me as well. Not taking sides and I don’t have a dog in the fight, saying how I see it.
Fair enough. My apologies to anyone I offended.
GG I have done successful solo diy AK moose, in a bone in area. Clearly I have no problems doing the dirty work myself. I am curious how you expect me to clean a bison skull from my hotel in Jackson during peak ski season without drawing negative attention to hunters?
My plan is to use all my baggage for DELICIOUS cow bison meat and mail the skull from Jackson WY.
Thanks to everyone else!!!
With beetles the work is in maintaining beetle colonies. A person isn’t going to do that year round just to clean a couple skulls a year. So you take it to someone who does. And there’s no way a human can possibly clean a skull on the inside as thoroughly as dermestid beetles.
J2 taxidermy outside of Manhattan, MT has beetles and does good work. Not too far to ship or even drive over if had the time and can't find anyone closer.
Don that cow bison will be large, not sure flying to meat will work. I would call Matt's Meats and talk with him about the amount of meat you'll have.
Skinner Skull Shop might be closer to Jackson. https://www.skinnersskullshop.com/
Artiodactyla in Indian Hills, Colorado.
Second that. In my experience locally here in Denver area, Artiodactyla does fantastic work. And I clean quite a few a year myself and for friends. But on buffalo or bear, or even moose, I'd go to them.
For anyone in Wyoming or northern Colorado, I recommend Snowy Range Creations in Laramie. Quality people and quality results.
Hard to beat Rocky Mountain head hunters. Matt is a great dude.
Don, I’ve never “cleaned” a skull from a hotel room, so I can’t answer your question. I’ve caped and de-brained a lot of skulls where I killed the animal, though. Never had an issue with bunny huggers that way.
Thanks guys! Do you guys get the brains out before you ship?
There are some jerks on this site... Ed F
To all you guys posting pics of antlered heads: You do know there's a difference between horns and antlers, right? ;)
A friend of mine buries his skull and let's the bugs do there job then takes it out and finishes it off. I've seen another guy use a pressure washer to clean and then boil. Seems fairly simple once you get the hang. Might try it myself this year if I get a skull.
Best not take a pressure washer to a turkey skull. Another fine product from Rocky Mtn Head Hunters.