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Cleaning and Securing Osteoderms


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So, I found a few chunks of osteoderms in an area that floods quite often. I wasn't even sure what they were at first, only that I *thought* they might be. But they were completely covered in mud and I was super-careful picking them up and getting them home. One separated from the large chunk.

 

But now I have no idea what to do! I did leave them outside in the rain a few days; they were mostly uncovered when I found them anyway and have been sitting in sloppy mud for an eternity, so I figured it wouldn't hurt. So there was a lot of mud that came off but they're far from clean.

 

I'm not sure what to do next. I have a slight idea of the general area of the body these came from but the chunk is not lying flat and I don't know how to clean them to even see what I'm really working with. Are they going to all separate if I mess with them too much? My boyfriend said he'll get me whatever PaleoBond products I want (he's overwhelmingly supportive of my obsessive fossil hobby) so is that what I should be looking at? I've never felt "in over my head" with fossils before but I'm really at a loss with this.

 

Any assistance, opinions, thoughts, speculations, or anything else would be appreciated.

20201103_152140.jpg

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If they are well mineralized, then washing with a soft toothbrush under gently running water will be fine.  Try to support them well and watch for any cracks.  They may need consolidation with B72 or Vinac after completely drying.  There are many topics on the Forum that describe this process.

 

That's an awesome find!  Go get the rest!

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Thank you for the advice! I DID go back once since and didn't find anything more. I'm going to go back again anyway because I found an arrowhead and some old bottles as well. Surely I can find more of the guy, right? I hope!

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