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    Aging Bone?

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    jds6
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    Aging Bone?

    Post by jds6 on Sat Feb 23, 2013 10:12 am

    Greetings all;
    We all know that bone and ivory tend to change color with age. Is there a method to make bone look aged? Trying to make my new bow( wife's) look more aged than something just made. Any help or comments would be helpful! Thanks in advance.

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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by Dauntless on Sat Feb 23, 2013 11:05 am

    There's an archaeologist who does a lot of artifact reproductions for museums and the parks service. He has a blog too http://elfshotgallery.blogspot.ca/

    Anyways, I think he soaks bone and antler in strong tea to make it age to the point where reproductions look like actual artifacts. He also uses red ochre and charcoal to darken the pieces.

    Maybe painting on some very strong tea on the bone pieces would do the trick.

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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by Stonedog on Sun Feb 24, 2013 5:38 am

    Brown shoe polish. Works wonders.

    Use something like Kiwi...not the cream stuff. Wipe it on heavily...let it sit....buff off....repeat as necessary!
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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by jds6 on Sun Feb 24, 2013 5:59 am

    Thanks guys for the input.

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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by ferdinand on Sun Feb 24, 2013 8:41 am

    Crap, made a whole story but the internet failed and its lost. Damn egyptian internet!!

    So, again here we go:
    Shoe pollish i also used, great stuff but u cant use a varnish afterwards because its to greasy.
    I made results with a stain for wood. Waterbased does best.

    But i have a question about material like Nylon.
    I have 2 blocks in my garage, can i stain it enough? Anyone experience?

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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by Lien93 on Sun Feb 24, 2013 12:20 pm

    Try alcohol based stain, it has a tendency to seep into almost everything
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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by kiwijim on Mon Feb 25, 2013 1:45 am

    I would soak the bone in a weak solution of potassium permanganate for about an hour.. You can usually buy this stuff at pharmacies. What I like about this chemical that it penetrates deeply and gently oxidises bone; like nature does it given time. It gives a nice natural brown which soaks into the bone for about 1mm. I use a medium strong solution to restore sun bleached antler, which it does beautifully.However, if the solution is very strong, it will turn bone dark brown or even black; but this can also be useful in some situations
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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by jds6 on Mon Feb 25, 2013 4:56 am

    Greetings all;
    I have already had the bone in place before posting this topic. I did try the shoe polish method. It looks really good. But I am affaid that the polish will wear off in time, especially where the bolt passes across the table of the tiller. Can this be avoided?
    Thanks for the info guys!

    jds6

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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by panne on Mon Feb 25, 2013 7:13 am

    the major factor in staining bone is it's porosity. animals consuming a better diet, have denser bone structure. denser bone structure is exactly what we look for since it's stronger and more resistant to wear and structural failure. unfortunately the dense nature isn't conducive to absorbing liquid.

    over the years we've found that potassium permanganate, as kiwijim mentioned, lasts the longest and is the easiest to control the shading. the best source in the US is a taxidermy supply or an aquatic pond supplier. a little goes a very long way. we've used less than a quart out of a gallon over a 40 year period in my dad's taxidermy school and personal shop.

    using tea or coffee will have limited success even when soaked for days. soaking for days will warp and weaken it. once it's attached to the crossbow you can't soak it and you'll end up sanding and polishing it all off to straighten the warpage if you soak it before.

    if you look closely at the staining on this coyote skull i stained with coffee, you'll see that it barely darkened the bone in the densest areas. it started out bleached white. most of it is rubbing off from minor handling and it doesn't get played often. it sat in coffee that was boiled down to a thin syrup for 3-4 days. it also warped it enough, that it affected the tuning. i ended up having to retune it and lost more finish in the process.
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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by jds6 on Mon Feb 25, 2013 8:00 am

    Thanks panne for the info. What if a light coat of polyurethane is brushed over the bone that I used the shoe polish on. Maybe it will seal in the polish. Any thoughts on this?

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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by panne on Tue Feb 26, 2013 8:24 am

    polyurethane is one of the most common wood finishes on marine applications. the unfortunate thing is that sunlight will damage it in about a year. on polished surfaces it will start to chip off pretty fast. on larger pieces i've found lacquer to last longer.

    on small parts that need wear and moisture resistance i use CA glue. it dries clear, sticks great, stabilizes cracks and splinters and polishes up to a high gloss without too much effort. depending on your string pressure, material type and use you may have to refinish it every few months.

    thinned, boiled linseed and a some other types of oils may also be a good option since it's on a working part. they will rub in instead of off.

    if you have any left over pieces of the bone you are using, you may want to experiment with different ideas first. some permanent markers, fruit juices, stains, oils, etc may penetrate more than others. some finishes may also adhere better. this is one of the times where you have to figure out what the material will allow you to accomplish. bone and antler from one animal can have drastically different properties.

    if you look at the "skullarina" pic you'll see that along the cheek arches where my hands rub, the lacquer has worn off and the oils from my hands have stained it darker than the rest. you could just leave it unfinished for a while and rub some sweaty, not so clean hands on it regularly. to me the best patina is the one you create with time and use.
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    Re: Aging Bone?

    Post by jds6 on Tue Feb 26, 2013 4:35 pm

    panne

    Great information! I do have bone pieces left, and yes, experimental processes are in order. brew brew CA glue is an interesting topic !
    Headed to the shop, thanks again!

    jds6

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