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American Lion(?) cast resculpt/display prep


LabRatKing

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Will follow up with current stage photos shortly!

 

Here is what I started with:

Unidentified

Provenance Unknown 

Really bad mold mismatch/ thick seam

 

 

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Also, this repop is a museum cast being prepped for educational use. If I was going for forgeries, I have a state of the art chemistry lab I would use instead of paint and plaster and putty!:rolleyes:

 

(as a few folks get far too upset with repops)

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And this is the interwebs photo I’ve been using as a reference:

If you have a better/additional one please share. 90% of the web images are repops with serious morphology issues versus the journal articles most of which lack decent photos.

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Very cool project! I had no idea what the holes beneath the eye sockets were but a quick search and I discovered that they are called infraorbital foramen and are for the nerve/blood vessel/artery to the eye. Even stranger asiatic lions have divided infraorbital foramen that may have originated from a severe population restriction. This is an awesome forum, and thanks for contributing your project! 

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On 28.10.2020 at 12:58 AM, Titan said:

Very cool project! I had no idea what the holes beneath the eye sockets were but a quick search and I discovered that they are called infraorbital foramen and are for the nerve/blood vessel/artery to the eye. Even stranger asiatic lions have divided infraorbital foramen that may have originated from a severe population restriction. This is an awesome forum, and thanks for contributing your project! 

Interesting, never heard about this variant in asiatic lions!

The nervus infraorbitalis does not connect to the eye though, but to the maxilla and facial surface including the sensitive whiskers, maybe thats why the foramen is so big in the big cat.

Cheers,

J

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34 minutes ago, Mahnmut said:

Interesting, never heard about this variant in asiatic lions!

The nervus infraorbitalis does not connect to the eye though, but to the maxilla and facial surface including the sensitive whiskers, maybe thats why the foramen is so big in the big cat.

Cheers,

J

Aye, Panthera atrox, However, I should go on record stating that is my best guess as to identity as there is zero information on this cast in our records.

The foramen has been the difficult part, hence the photo stolen from the web I'm using for reference. Thee good news is even though this was a bad cast, the foramen was well preserved in the original and well defined in this repop. 

 

I haven't had time to post the current photos, but I was successful in cleaning out the foramen, and the mold slag on the seams, and then fill and texture them with Apoxy. I'm currently on the 5th base coat of paint and what I call the subtle texturing phase, to make the repairs completely invisible.

 

You cant tell from the raw plaster photos, but the detailing on the weathered edges where the spongiform tissue is located is superb.

 

I should be able to finish this piece tonight and move on to the next one...which is a very interesting skull from the American Museum of Natural History collection. They have not gotten back to me on the actual identity yet, but that will be an entirely different thread, much like the meg tooth repop thread.

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yes, except for the seams the cast looks very detailed.

Looking forward to seeing it painted.

Are you doing this as a hobby or professionally?

Best Regards,

J

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1 hour ago, Mahnmut said:

yes, except for the seams the cast looks very detailed.

Looking forward to seeing it painted.

Are you doing this as a hobby or professionally?

Best Regards,

J

It is highly detailed for sure.

 

 I guess technically I’m doing these professionally...this is from the laboratory collection at the University I work as the lab manager for...however the actual work of making them into educational display pieces is all being done at my home on my own dime.

 Before I played lab rat overlord, I pretended to be an artist and an engineer...currently I’m also getting ready to start grad school for Museum Studies with emphasis on curation and collections...so a lot of the stuff will go into my portfolio too.

 

Myself and a few professors are resurrecting the earth sciences program, so it falls to me to get everything ready. Once I get all 31 specimens prepped, I’ll get reimbursed by being allowed to make molds and recast them so I can add them to my own collection.

 

Well, that and the pandemic destroyed most of  my expeditions this year, so I’m very bored and I’m saving the real fossils until the weather gets bad!

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On 10/30/2020 at 10:50 AM, Mahnmut said:

The nervus infraorbitalis does not connect to the eye though, but to the maxilla and facial surface including the sensitive whiskers, maybe thats why the foramen is so big in the big cat.

Interesting, the website I landed on stated it connected to the eye. Thanks for the correction! 

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Here is where it is at right now. Time for more washes and weathering, then detail them choppers!

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And here we are a few more washes in. I had some erosion on a very thin part of the cast where there was an existing hole. Nothing to be done with it. 
 

The downside to plaster casts is even when stabilized, it can get soft if you over work it.  
 

The colors are a bit washed out as I use full spectrum LED work lights.

 

 

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This one is fairly close to actual colors at this step, but need to let things dry for a few days before I get to abrasion weathering and final paint. The drywall scrap is strictly for auto white balance reference.

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As a credit to your skill and future identification, are these going to have an identifying number engraved on them?  :)

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20 minutes ago, JohnJ said:

As a credit to your skill and future identification, are these going to have an identifying number engraved on them?  :)

Well, thankfully most of them have the source and number on them, this piece and the meg tooth had nothing. As I work through the other pieces, I plan to preserve any such identifying labels. I figured the “blank” ones were a good place to practice!

 

But once everything has positive ID I’ll add a prepared by yours truly to the labels.

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Bone is done. All that’s left is to finish the teeth! Photos taken in natural sunlight, so pretty sure this is as close as I can get to the sample photo I used as reference.

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  • 2 weeks later...

You've been mighty busy.  Excellent work on all 3 recent projects! :default_clap2:

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6 minutes ago, grandpa said:

You've been mighty busy.  Excellent work on all 3 recent projects! :default_clap2:

And have six more in various stages. However, just gonna post those in chunks, rather than reporting in on each step.

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UPDATE! Project 100% complete.

(I never get to say 100%....)

 

While searching for information on a completely different cast, I accidentally found positive ID on this one.

Even though it is in black and white, looks Like I guessed pretty well on the colors. (shameless bragging)

Research pays off as always. Source linked below the screen grab.

 

 

 

 

For reference:

 

Panthera atrox Leidy

UNSM 46450

Late Pliestocene (Rancholabrean)-Holocene

Davidson Pits,  Rw-102, Red Willow County, Nebraska, USA

Corner, 1977

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From the paper  A LATE PLEISTOCENE-HOLOCENE VERTEBRATE FAUNA FROM RED WILLOW COUNTY, NEBRASKA, R. GEORGE CORNER 1977

FAMILY FEliDAE

Panthera atrox (Leidy)

North American lion Material.-

Rw-102: Left facial fragment with alv. 11/ and 12/, 13/ - C/, alv. P2/, P3/ - P4/, and alv. Ml/, U.N.S.M. 46450.

Discussion.-This is the first record of Panthera atrox from Nebraska, and it is probably the best example (Fig. 2) from the Great Plains. The size of the Red Willow specimen slightly exceeds the mean of the Rancho La Brea population (Merriam and Stock, 1932) and indicates a mature but not aged individual. The preserved teeth are in excellent condition, the canine being slightly broken at its tip. This facial fragment offers little in the way of additional infonnation concerning the description of the species, and it is very similar to specimens figured by Merriam and Stock (1932) from Rancho La Brea.

 

Panthera atrox is widely distributed throughout much of North America and into South America (Harington, 1969:1971). P. atrox probably lived in open plains or open woodlands and may have had habits similar to the African lion (Kurten and Anderson, 1972:22). The North American lion ranges from Sangamon to Late Wisconsinan (Harington, 1969: 1285).

 

Measurements.-Facial fragment (U.N.S.M. 46450): Min. distance anterior of orbit to anterior tip of premaxilla, 165.7; width of palate between upper canines, (67); min. dorsoventral diameter of malar, 45; dorsoventral diameter of infraorbital foramen, 21; length anterior of C/ alv. to posterior of P4/ alv., 124; length anterior of P2/ alv. to P4/ alv., 84.8; 131 TR, 11.7; C/ AP X TR, 31.1 X 22.6; P3/ AP X TR, 27.7 X 16.7; P4/ AP X TR, 41.8 X 21.0.

 

 

I haven't been this happy about research results in a while...now I have to update the ID tag on the display!

:raindance:

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LordTrilobite

Good to see you've been able to find which specimen it's a cast of. Nice!

Really nice clean looking display too!

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