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Thread: How to Clean Animal Mount 'Mountain Goat' that are Gray from Fireplace Soot?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007

    Default How to Clean Animal Mount 'Mountain Goat' that are Gray from Fireplace Soot?

    Do you remember those mountain goats climbing the wall at Moonlight Resort?
    I have been asked to bid on them. They have never been cleaned and are a little gray from fireplace soot. Can you guide me? This is 2 of 3 goats.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Greater Vancouver, Canada.


    A hydraulic lift is an essential piece of equipment for job of this height and is best to perform the restoration cleaning task where the goat is.

    Trophies mounts in this case are the White Mountain Goats that have turn gray from soot and smoke from the fireplace.

    These are actually Mountain Goats skins that have been tanned with their hair intact and taxidermic mounting onto sculptured mannikins for exhibiting them in a lifelike state.

    It can be either wet clean with Cleaner-5.5 follows with Rinse-4.0 or dry cleaned with Fur-n-Hair-S if they are not contaminated with soot or smoke from the fire place.

    This cleaning is classified as Soot and Smoke Damage Restoration Cleaning and not merely a routine cleaning or periodic cleaning by either the above two methods that suite.

    Care has to taken not to wet out the skin unnecessary that might affect other unknown chemistry component involved in the art of taxidermy.

    The horns, nose, eyes, hoofs may have been colored with dyes or paints that need to be covered off if they are not colorfast to either cleaning solutions.

    The restorer has to be as diligent in restoring the appearance and overall setting as the artist that has created these arts originally.

    The restorer must understand that this is an artistic restorative cleaning that requires an aptitude for details just like the taxidermist.

    It is either the taxidermist or the master restorer that are equally qualified for the job.

    It is always prudent to do a testing on either system to determine the outcome of the result.

    This should be classified as smoke damage restoration cleaning rather than a routine cleaning.

    So a simple dry cleaning approach might not address the desired result.

    I believe we need more than the both systems mentioned above now to produce the overall “wow” factor.

    So my recommendation (modify to suite for backing up your bid) is as follows:

    Step 1: Dry Soil, Smoke and Soot Removal:
    Smoke and soot are removed with regular soot sponges without smearing.
    Detail brushing with suede Brush-3 then follows with a fine doggy slicker to separate the hairs.
    Then compress air blowing and vacuuming with a HEPA filter to remove soiling without polluting the environment.
    Explain of the possibility of insect damages if these mounts are not mothproof periodically.
    Do not forget to check for insect damages as an additional service.
    If there is, stop, take pictures and show before proceeding.

    Step 2: Degreasing, Smoke and Soot Removal:
    To ensure effective removal of sticky fine micron soot or smoke particles
    A combination of Super Cleaner-4.9 pH 4.9 hair-safe degreaser and d’Smoke-4.7 pH 4.7 hair-safe smoke and soot booster are fine mist sprayed simultaneously and brush.
    Extraction with dry white towel follows immediately until towel shows clean without the normal dwelling time.
    This immediate extraction is to ensure that the liquid does not come into contact with the unknown tanned skin.
    Most probably it is alum-tanned if the skin appears creamy white.
    Some alum tanned skin are wet cleanable and some are hydrophobic (hates water), so be cautious!
    Very unlikely the skin is chrome-tanned (100% wet cleanable) as the greenish grey color may affect the appearance of the white hair.
    So a hair dryer is useful if the solution does inevitably wet the creamy colored skin.

    Step 3: Cleaning & Disinfecting:
    Sticky residues need be clean off from the hair with Cleaner-5.5 a pH 5.5 hair-safe disinfecting cleaner.
    Fine mist spray, brush and extract until towel shows clean.

    Step 4: Acidifier Rinse:
    All residues are to be rinse off with Rinse-4.0 a pH 4.0 hair acidifier rinse.
    Fine mist spray, brush and extract until towel shows clean.

    Step 5: Optical Brightening Effect Treatment (optional):
    With prolong accumulating smoke and soot hydrolysation and oxidation it often reveals a yellowing effect when the grayish soot color is removed.
    d’Yellow-6.7 a pH 6.7 fluorescent whitening agent fine mist treatment will correct the yellowing effect by changing the reflecting light waves thus causing a perceived “whitening” effect.

    Step 6: Sheen Conditioning (optional):
    Hair dullness can be further enhanced with a fine spray application with Fur-n-Hair-S a waterless cleaner and sheen conditioner to improve the dull appearance.

    Step 7: Damage Control against Insect Damage (optional):
    Insect damage is irreversible, once gone is gone, it’s too late.
    A light application at the right season will deter insect like the female moth to land and lay their eggs or a deep application that last longer.
    It is the hungry fast growing larvae that feast the protein hair that cause the damages and not the moth itself.
    For heavy application just follow instruction when applying MothProof-5.4 a leather and hair safe moth proofing agent.

    It’s wiser to quote a price for each individual service to reflect the professionalism to the job.

    And educate your customer as sometimes they might not know what they don’t know about maintaining the appearance of these Mountain Goats.

    Help them to see the need for a top notch quality service.

    So stress on the technicality as well to make them understand, then the price will become too cheap to refuse!

    With extra salesmanship on your part, I believe you will win the bid even at a higher price!

    And don’t forget to take pictures of every step.

    Roger Koh
    [email protected]
    Master Fire & Smoke Restorer (IICRC #942)
    Last edited by Roger Koh; 11-08-2008 at 11:31 AM.

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