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View Full Version : Can Whitetail Deer Antler be used for scales?



opiy
09-06-2010, 02:02 PM
I know many hunters and I even have a guy that said he would give me some antler from whitetail deer but I don't know if it could be used for handle material. Does it have to be stabilized? Do I need to do anything to it to prep it? Does it just need to be dried out for a long time? Is it even worth fooling with? Can it be sent on to a wood stabilizer company?

I just want to find out if it is worth fooling with before I ask the guy to bring me a load of antler.

I did search for this but wasn't finding anything. I saw another knife maker used some on a knife but I don't know anything else past that.

Thanks

Bob Warner
09-06-2010, 02:56 PM
I am certainly not an expert but I know a little about antler.

The inside is soft, therefore you will have difficulty using it for slabs that are thick due to the soft center. If you used it for thin scales like a folder you should be fine.

I have never heard of anyone stabilizing it.

If you make a stick tang knife you will hollow out the soft parts and fill with epoxy and a pin to hold it together and that would work fine.

Gahagan
09-06-2010, 03:11 PM
I have seen it done before here is an example.
http://www.rangeroriginal.com/HTML/number4.html

ChuckBurrows
09-06-2010, 03:13 PM
With all due respect to Bob whether the inside of antler is soft or not depends on several factors such as age, how collected (drops or directly off the animal). local food sources, etc. With that said most all antler except Sambar has a soft inner core to varying degrees, but not all by any means - I have used lots over the years and have pieces on hand of both whitetail and mule deer that is as solid as Sambar.
An alternative to the bore it out and fill with epoxy on a stick tang, is to drill and tightly fit the tang as normal - then boil the antler for a half hour to an hour or so. The soft core will turn hard and if you work fast the tang can be "glued" in place by shoving it into the hot core, many knives of the past were done this way and are still in usable condition.
As to whether whitetail is good for scales depends on the size, most often it is used for stick tangs and is very popular, especially the crown ends for 18-19th century period knives, but the tines also work well for a more conventional grip.
I love the stuff so if you don't want it send it my way or if you'd be interested in doing some horse trading let me know.........

Calvin Robinson
09-06-2010, 03:33 PM
I know many hunters and I even have a guy that said he would give me some antler from whitetail deer but I don't know if it could be used for handle material. Does it have to be stabilized? Do I need to do anything to it to prep it? Does it just need to be dried out for a long time? Is it even worth fooling with? Can it be sent on to a wood stabilizer company?

I just want to find out if it is worth fooling with before I ask the guy to bring me a load of antler.

I did search for this but wasn't finding anything. I saw another knife maker used some on a knife but I don't know anything else past that.

ThanksYou need to take him up on his offer for the antler, here are some exampels of whitetail antler as handel.

Bob Warner
09-06-2010, 04:35 PM
Like I said, I am no expert. Just shared what I knew which was a minor amount.

Now it looks like there is more value in them than I thought. Sounds like something worth pursuing.

Cliff Fendley
09-06-2010, 07:45 PM
I've used it a bunch mostly on orders when the customer is supplying the handle material. In the past I've just told them in needs to be dry and off the animal for two or three years at least. I've recently started using some stabilized material and had our own Dutchman Stabilizer's stabilize some Whitetail antler.

opiy
09-06-2010, 09:55 PM
I love the stuff so if you don't want it send it my way or if you'd be interested in doing some horse trading let me know.........
I will have to see how much I can get. I know alot of hunters so they have to be running out of room storing these things.


You need to take him up on his offer for the antler, here are some exampels of whitetail antler as handel. Thanks for the examples.:thumbup1:


I've used it a bunch mostly on orders when the customer is supplying the handle material. In the past I've just told them in needs to be dry and off the animal for two or three years at least. I've recently started using some stabilized material and had our own Dutchman Stabilizer's stabilize some Whitetail antler. So you can have the stuff stabilized. I assumed it could be since other antler is but I wasn't sure.

Well this is good news, to find out I can use it. I think I will contact him and see what he can find for me.

Thanks

strother1990
09-06-2010, 11:06 PM
Does Ray mears woodlore knife have an antler handle? If so is his stabilized how was he able to use it?

VaughnT
09-10-2010, 12:38 PM
Find out what your local game laws are regarding the sale of animal parts. Just found out that in SC, you cannot legally sell deer antler... so you charge the customer for the blade and fittings, and throw the antler in for free!

GISspecialist
09-10-2010, 01:43 PM
I second what VaughnT said. Here in Oklahoma it is illegal to sell any part of a whitetail deer; meat, antler, hide, anything. I assumed that meant I could not sell a knife with a whitetail antler handle, but I hadn't considered the tactic of charging for the other parts and throwing the antler in for free. I'll have to see if that will fly here.

scroller99
09-10-2010, 05:49 PM
I turn whitetail antler on the lathe to make pens and the soft inside (which looks like sponge) when filled with ca glue to fill the area it really makes a cool pen and if it was made into a scales and treated the same it should make an interesting scale, most of the antler I have has been outside over a winter and is too bleached to make a decent looking scale, but that buck I have around here might help me out?