Keeping your deer mount clean is crucial to keeping it looking great. However, many people dread the thought of cleaning their mounts, because they think that it sounds like a huge, difficult task. It is not difficult, nor is it particularly time-consuming. Clean the mount several times a year to make your pride and joy last for generations.
Use a soft bristle brush to dust your deer mount in the same direction that the hair lays. Don’t brush against the grain of the hair. Dust on mounts makes the hair look old and shabby, and gives the eyes and nose a dull appearance.
Dampen a soft, lint-free cloth sparingly with mineral spirits. Gently dab the deer mount’s eyes, lips and nose with the mineral spirits. Don’t rub hard to avoid removal of paints and waxes. Avoid contact of the mineral spirits with the mount’s hair coat.
Pour a gallon of warm water into a bucket. Add ½ cup of hair conditioner or crème rinse and stir well. Soak a clean sponge in the mixture and wring it to remove excess fluid, leaving the sponge just barely damp. Wipe the deer mount’s hair with the dampened sponge, again going with the direction of the lay of the hair.
Rinse the sponge often with warm water. Continue wiping until you’ve cleaned the deer mount’s entire hair coat.
Pour about ¼ cup of wood furniture polish into a bowl. Begin adding turpentine a few drops at a time, stirring well following each addition, until the mixture becomes the color of weak coffee.
Dampen a soft cloth with the polish mixture, and wipe the deer mount’s antlers with it. Allow it to soak in, if it will. Make sure you don’t get any of this solution on any part of the mount other than the antlers. Use a clean soft cloth to dry them.
Dampen a soft clean cloth with mineral spirits and wipe the antlers with it. Don’t get any mineral spirits on the deer mount’s hair. Wipe dry with a soft clean cloth. Rub the cleaned and polished antlers with another cloth to give them a soft, pleasing shine.