Casting the Carter Bog Megalonyx, Part 1

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I mentioned last week that we’re starting several new molding and casting projects in order to expand our exhibits at VMNH. One of these projects is the Carter Bog Megalonyx, a ground sloth specimen excavated in Ohio during the early 1970’s that is housed at the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.

We’re starting off by molding the cranium and lower jaw, both of which are incomplete (the lower jaw is shown above). Our first step is to seal cracks, foramina, and other openings with wax to keep the silicone from reaching the interior of the bone. We also do some limited reconstruction work with wax, but only where necessary; most of our reconstruction work will be done later on a cast copy. Here’s the same lower jaw, with the wax work completed:

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At this point we can start planning the mold, which we’ll look at in Part 2.

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