Goat horns scales from animal to my scales - vegetarians look away

Discussion in 'Restoration & Razor Making How-To's.....' started by cleanshaved, May 22, 2012.

  1. I have made a start on making a set or two of Goat Horn scales from animal to scales, so this may be the longest rescale project in B&B history.
    Today I grabed a few heads. just the best of what I could see in the short time I had free.
    The car smells of stinky goat, guess the dogs won't complain when i take them for a ride but SWMBO well....I might just have to leave her at home....
    I cut the horns off at home. Will leave these in the guarage till the weekend when I will boil them to get the core out.
    then the waiting starts................ about year later I should be good to go with cutting to size etc.
    $IMG_2048.jpg $IMG_2049.jpg
    Last edited: May 22, 2012
  2. That's Hardcore!
  3. I have read bone and horn needs to dry for at least a year or warping can happen. will try a find some more data on the subject.
    any advice would be much welcome as I have never done this before.
  4. Legion

    Legion Moderator Emeritus

    Neither have I. I once found a big rams horn in the bush when I was a kid, and took it home. My mother wasn't too happy with it.

    I'm not sure where it went, but I wish I'd kept it now.
  5. If you allow the horns to dry you will be able to remove the horn "husk " without boiling. That was my experience anyway. Good luck with this I have had similar ideas.
  6. professorchaos

    professorchaos Moderator Emeritus

    And I thought goat horn fell from heaven like manna, sunshine and dwarfs.
  7. gearchow

    gearchow Moderator Emeritus Contributor

    he said dwarfs :laugh:

    I would think that you could accelerate drying out the horns much in the same way lumber is kiln dried - a sustained higher then ambient but not too hot heat?

  8. I mentioned that in the other thread about goat horn scales and drying. I was thinking something on the left side of 100C (a complete WAG). It would still take a few days so doing it in the kitchen would be a no-no. In my other adventure/hobby (which also has acquisition disorder so... I'm really a sick puppy) I have a drying cabinet but I would hate to dry the horns in there, too. It is made of wood and I bet it would smell like the Veg - forever.

    Soooo... even with my cool (but not unique) idea, I would probably still set them up in the attic and let them dry there. Come to think of it... that might be a very good spot since it stays pretty warm and it's ventilated. Just have to take them down in the Winter but by then they could probably go in the drying cabinet.

    Sources for this stuff? It is too late to find fallen antlers in our area. They are probably there but you don't want to go there... the woods are lovely, dark and deep - and filled with bugs and stuff that creeps.

    I was looking on eBay and there are antlers for sale for such things but most are not suitable (at least I'm not sure they are suitable). They seem to be reasonably priced, though. Our local dog emporium has deer antler chews which are expensive but the large ones should make several scales. So... for $20 you should be able to make two sets of scales if you are pure of heart.

    Anyhoo... I look forward to how these turn out.

    Oh... and just to contribute off topic... I don't mind blood... the current picture looks like my bathroom sink every morning... ;-}
  9. I think those are going to make some awesome scales !
    Since you have so many , one of the things I would try is to cut one up . I would then take the pieces and clamp them between some pieces of wood (2x4) , just as a way to see how close to flat you can get them , before any further processing .
  10. yes just the thought of baking the horns and the odur they will omit has ruled that out. good things take time, so will place them in the garage close to the corrigated iron roof.
    re antler casting. I have only every found one antler casting in the bush. I would have better luck getting some antler if I went out for a hunt in the roar, which by the way has just finished.
    Last edited: May 23, 2012
  11. with the long dry time I got more than I needed for few reasons. 1st I have never done this before so there is a practice horn and 2nd I am not sure how each piece will look after dried trime etc so can choice the best when the process is complete. would hate to find after drying one horn just split on me or something like that.
    to get flat I believe you boil the scale and then it is flexable, just have to be careful not to boil it too long. I was thinking of laying it between some wood with a weight on it to set it flat.
  12. strop

    strop Moderator Emeritus

    If you can find an old microwave at a yard sale (don't use the one in the house) You might try drying one by using very short cycles, and allowing it to cool to room temp between cycles. Keep it below boiling temp so they don't explode.
  13. Get an old toaster oven at the yard sale, and pop them in there for a while at 200 degrees and see what happens.....

    There's no way i'd have the patience to wait a year for those horns to cure naturally!
  14. I would let them cure naturally. I think they would end up being more stable. In fact, I think after a curing period, I would saw them into oversize slabs and let them cure some more. The scales, freshly sawn from a whole horn, might be subject to a whole nother round of warping. If they are sawn over-thickness, you got something to work with. Just sand them flat when they are stable. I think that would work well.
  15. Thread subscribed. Awesome topic and photos!
  16. I just check on the horns with the idea of boiling a few to remove the core but thought better of it. If I had done it the same day I may have been comfortable using the Mrs big pot but my nose tells me not to. It is now posible to see the thickness of the horn at the cut end. Did not measure but the eyeomertor says 3 to 5mm (4mm is just over 1/8 inch I think?) will be intersting to see when I split them if they are thicker the further out the horn, my guess is they will be.
    will let these dry the natural way. Winter has just started here so may take a few months for the core to drop? If the smell goes away I may have a crack at boiling a few.
    I keep telling myself good things take time and have been wondering if all the talk re warping horn scales could be due to forced drying methods to turn a dollar?
  17. It has been just over 3 weeks leaving the horns to air dry in the hope the core could be removed.
    I could not smell these in the guarge but the dog still can. Trust a Lab to track potential food.
    Well I tried to pull the core out with some pliers with no luck.
    The little woman went out this morning so grabed her big pot and boiled them for a few hours.
    now clean but still the core was insitu.
    scrubbed them with a scoth pad. now you can see the colour better. one black and two blond
    $Goat Horn cleaned 003.jpg $Goat Horn cleaned 004.jpg $Goat Horn cleaned 006.jpg

    looking end on you can see it is round except for one seam that is flat. Had been concidering cutting the seam off.
    Held up to light helped firmed up my plan.
    $Goat Horn cleaned 002.jpg
    One horn is not smooth all the way down, so this is my first horn to meet the saw.
    cut the seam off approx 3/4 the way do. used a screw drived to help ease the horn apart.
    $Goat Horn cleaned 007.jpg
    Then just flicked the core out.
    sorry can only post 5 photo per post so to be continued............
  18. now where was I.
    That's right I flicked the core out. $Goat Horn cleaned 008.jpg

    Now you can see where the horn had the defect that there is good horn below it.
    $Goat Horn cleaned 009.jpg
    plan to just cut the end off, split the side all the way down. Boil till soft then lay flat.
    Now the Mrs is home the using of her pot to boil stinky goat is better left for another day. what see don't know won't kill her.
    will play with this horn again next Saturday morning.
    once I have one done will do the same with the other five.
  19. Yes in this case it should read What she don't know won't kill me or I may meet the same fate as the poor old goats. please don't tell:em2700:
  20. The same fate as the goats?

    She'd have to be pretty bold to make scales out of you and post the pics here. On the other hand she would have a spare pot she wouldn't want to use for much else.

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