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Removing claws from feet

My wife got her first bear last week and she is having a 3/4 wall mount made, we took the back feet from him and I was wondering about how to remove the claws for a necklace, any ideas?

Chuck-n-Alaska's picture
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Location: Southcentral Alaska
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Removing claws from feet

I've never taken the claws off a bear foot but if you turned the toes when you dressed the bears out you should be able to cut them out of the toe. When I do a bear hide I turn the toes inside out leaving only the claw attached to the foot.

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Removing claws from feet

Cappy
Baisicly I have always used a sharp knife and worked around the toe, cutting the skin close to the bottom of the claw first then working up and away from the claw. There is a pce of bone that goes up into the claw and the claw fits around it like a "cow/bull horn". If you "worrie" the area at the base of the claw to much it will pull off of the bone inside and you then have a hollow claw.

Once I get the claw off the foot I clean off as much skin and meat as I can then I put the claws in a ziplock bag with a generous amount of Borax. This bag I put in the fridge for about a week, shaking it every now and then. I then toss the bag in the freezer for a couple of months so not only do the claws get dried and preserved by the borax they also get "freeze dried" (the longer in the freezer the better). Keep them in the Borax untill you do what ever it is you are going to do with them, once again the longer the better.

The best necklace would be with bone in I had a bunch one time that I gave to a friend that does silver work and she set them in silver pendent style I gave them as Christmas presents that year. I kept one and when I am home this weekend I will try to remember to take a photo of it and post here so you can take a gander.

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Location: OlyWa
Joined: 04/27/2005
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Removing claws from feet

Here is my way.

Take the paw and lay it on a table or chunk of wood with the claws pointing to the left. With your thumb and first finger of your left hand, grab a claw where the hair starts. With your right hand feel about a half inch behind where the skin starts and you will feel the joint. Now with a sharp knife cut the skin straight down, then rotate your knife hand slightly to the right and cut to the left in a crescent shape.

Once you have all the claws off you will want to clean them up a bit. Here is how I do it.
Hold the claw in your left hand by the long hairs, with the tip facing up and the pad facing away from your hand. Cut straight down between the long hair and back of the claw. Do not remove all of the skin, basically you are giving the claw a close shave. Then I do this to both sides, then with the pad.

When they are done put them in a small bowl with Borax. Every couple days you should shuffle them around a bit. If they are very wet or damp I lay them on a plate to air dry, then back to borax.

Do not use salt or store in the freezer.

Here are some photos of some claws that I started to clean. They do not have any hair on them but you will get the idea.

I take the claw by the back, where the long hair is and cut right down the back.

Then I do the sides

Then what is left of the pad.

Here is how I store them.

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bear claw removal

Thanks for the responces, I have the claws in some Borax and will freeze them for a few months before making the necklace. Big smile

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Removing claws from feet

Will see how good my new phone camera is?

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Location: Moncton
Joined: 09/10/2005
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Removing claws from feet

What is BORAX and where can you buy it?[/b]

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Location: ND
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Removing claws from feet

Here's how I did a necklace with all the claws from the '05 & '06 bears. Skulls from each are on either end.

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Removing claws from feet

Very nice there Ken Thumbs up

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Removing claws from feet
CORMIER wrote:
What is BORAX and where can you buy it?[/b]

Any supermarket usually sells it. Tends to be with the cleaning supplies or laundyr detergent.

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Location: OlyWa
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Removing claws from feet

Kenfred - Did you just drill holes through the side? What type of beads? How about a close up?

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