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Making minis from animal bones and bits


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A bone fortress by Ironhands http://www.ironhands.com/ftbone.htm and the article on using spices [plants] for basing brought to my unwholesome mind an idea for using bones and such for minis and terrrain.


But how to preserve them uncooked? leaving them outside outside sounds like an invitation to trouble for me [raccoons and nosy neighboors] Bake them Maybe? anything good to soak them in? I know vinegar would soften them, but I just want to clean them.


chicken breasts make great material for rib-cages and possibly bone blades. Wings could make nice bone clubs.


Cornish hens could provide whole rib cages for the remains of dead monsters. or for animated skeletons


I have a modest sized toy with 2 sets of arms that a set of crayfish claws could make a overgrown glabrazu [type 3 D&D demon]. I an still debating how to clean and seal them however.



Of note taco bell has ‘happy meal’ toys of ancient mammal skeletons. Giant sloth, wooly mammoth, saber-toothed cat and a whale. the rib cages suck, but some of the bones have potential.

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Get all the meat and cartilige off of them that you can. Put them someplace cool and dry to set a few days, make sure there is no moisture on them. Pop them in the microwave to kill anything that might of set on them, then take them and hit them many times with clearcoat or mattcoat, locking the bone part in. If you want to make sure the marrow dries out inside, drill a few holes with a pinvice and let them dry for a week or so..



The key is to make sure they don't start to decompose, so you can use a sealer or just dry them out really really well, either way.





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Another way to speed the process is by using a soda material specifically for this---

Here's an example




It is my understanding that boiling or soaking in bleach can cause shrinkage and bone deterioration. However, I've seen this process done---

Boil in water with a bit of detergent added---the detergent helps loosens the marrow. You can drill a small hole in the bone to remove the marrow if you wish, and then fill it with putty/plaster/etc.

Soak in hydrogen peroxide over night.

Seal with a matte sealer.


There are several taxidermy links that may provide some more in-depth information as to the best way to go about this.


I've heard that if the preservation process is not thorough, the bones will stand the chance of being attacked by carpet beetles---this wouldn't be good--these bugs eat about anything in sight.


Good luck,


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If you have access to a taxidermy place that uses a dermestid beetle colony, you're in luck, for trickier jobs at least. (Many museums and universities have them, but do not generally take in 'outside work'.) Can drop in a mouse carcass and get every tiny lil' bone perfectly clean!

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Geez, and to think that it took me quite a while to accept miniatures made of plastic, or with plastic parts, and here you are!, All talking about using DEAD TISSUE (that used to be alive), as miniature apt material.


:down: Tsk, tsk.

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The problem is once you dabble into which that is taxidermy just be prepared see a few zeros in the cost.


My friend, who bow hunts, chooses to clean his own skulls (unless it breaks his record of an 8 point buck) just because of the costs. I think he boils the meat off using the clorine mix suggested earlier that and using a air powered compressor to blow out the brains (first you have to scramble them using a drill with a wire attatched).


Anywho, I think you would be best served but visisting some hunter websites and doing it yourself.


my 10 farthings

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that is such a cool idea, why didn't I think of it I am rather dark at times.  I may stop at taco bell and look at those skeleton critter toys too.  Wonders how hard to catch that stray cat out side.  "joking only mice and food animals" :blues:

I was considering a badger for a quadrapedal Behemoth skeleton. Cat's general structures are too lithe and the retractable claws are too delicate looking compared to the skeleton size.


getting said skeleton would be risky.

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