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Old 08-13-2007, 11:41 AM
hen hen is offline
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Default need help on making eagle wings and talons

Hi Everyone, my name is Hen and i am new to carving, only been doing about a month and am hooked, any way i hope some of you good folks here can help me or have a tutorial on making eagles wings and the legs and talons,i think but not sure you use wire for all birds feet and talons on the predator birds. so if anyone can help it would be greatly appriciated.

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Old 08-14-2007, 09:33 AM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

Check out Floyd Scholtz's new book on the "Golden Eagle". In it is a wealth of information that you seek.

Before they slip me over the standing part of the fore sheet, I'd like to pipe: "Up Spirits" or "Splice the Main Brace" .....................one more time.

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Old 08-14-2007, 11:12 AM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

can anyone here give me advice or directions without having to buy a book?

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Old 08-14-2007, 07:05 PM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

Id start smaller and carve a few smaller birds first before I jumped into the deep end of the pool. Dont be too ambitious early on you will be disappointed at the results learn to walk before you run a marathon grasshopper.
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Old 08-15-2007, 01:42 PM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

I just got done reading the Floyd Scholz book, The Golden Eagle. I got it from my Library. I am going to read through it one more time before bringing it back. It is a must read if you are going to take on a big bird. You will get the answer to your question in his book. This book is not a how to but what it takes to do something this big. He goes through some how to but it is in the pictures that you can see what it would take to make some thing like this. One of the best books I have read in a long time. Evan
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Old 08-16-2007, 03:58 AM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

hello hen,

My thoughts are this. The eagle is carved so often, I would strive to bring it, visually, to a place less obvious. this can be very difficult as we all have seen so many great poses, and depictions. Again, I would strive to "make It your own"

Best of luck,
can't wait to see

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Old 08-16-2007, 09:09 AM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

I agree pretty much with the advice you have been given. Bird carving is my favorite and even though I do carve a few animals, I keep returning to birds of prey.

If your ambition and desire is to carve an eagle, then I recommend trying it. But, if at all possible, find someone who has carved birds to give you some advice. Also it is best to start simple. Pose your eagle on a limb or rock with wings in against the body and only the feet and talons exposed. Using wire to make the legs should come much later.

There are three difficult areas when carving an eagle:

1: The bill. Getting the right angle and extension to the end of the bill and carving the mouth reaching back into the head needs to be done with great care. The biggest mistake is to carve a thick heavy bill.

2. The eyes. I like glass eyes as they add to a carving. But, you need to make sure that the "eyebrow" extends over the eye, this is what makes the eagle's gaze so fascinating. The other area of concern is to make sure that the eyes "focus forward" and not out to the side. To accomplish this, the front side of the eye must be set a little deeper than the back side.

3. The talons. To look real the points of several of the talons must be set right against the object on which they rest. Rather than carve them, I take 2-part epoxy putty and make about 25 talons a little longer than are needed for my carving. Roll them on something smooth like glass, bring them to a nice point and set them at different curves on the end. Leave plenty of talon to insert into the foot. Once they are dry use them for inserts. For interest cave one toe (the inner one would probably be easiest) laying over so that the talon's side is resting on the base. Now, use a gouge or bit to make a trough in each toe to receive the talon. Cut it a little longer than needed. It is simple to put the talon in place with the point resting on the base. Try different ones until you get the look you want. Then use more of the epoxy mix to hold the talon in place. Form the "foot wrinkles" in the epoxy before it hardens and you have your feet.

Later on you can learn to carve wing inserts and put them in your carving. Inserts are good because you can run the grain correctly and I like to make them out of tupelo which is more flexible than basswood when carved thin.

Good to have another birdcarver join the forum.
Paul Guraedy (jer-AH-dee)

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Old 08-16-2007, 01:16 PM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

Hello Hen I am a new member also, I agree with everyone start simple no fancy poses, no wing's in the open position, just in a relaxed sitting position. Also gather as much picture's as you can, poses from every angle you are going to do the bird in. I have gathered many picture's from the internet and printed them out and they were very good quality pictures. As mentioned there are many good books out there on the subject. You can save a lot of money buy checking out amazon.com for books. Good luck, take your time be patient before you know it you will be doing more difficult postions soon.

Bird carver
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Old 09-22-2007, 03:53 PM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

Hen check new post wing photoes & Lori Corbett reply great wing pictures.
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Old 09-22-2007, 07:46 PM
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Default Re: need help on making eagle wings and talons

Hi Hen...welcome to the forum...in addition to all great advice, here's a couple more resourses for your reference...
This first is from a site that documents bird skulls. Look at the top view of the eagle's skull and note the eye orbits. If you were to print this out, you could draw reference lines and establish fairly accurately the angle of the eyes. I use this site extensively...(type in Bald Eagle in the search box on the left side)...
Bald Eagle Skull

This next site is one that photographs open wings specimens...top and bottom. I use this site extensively, too...
(This link takes you directly to the page listing hawks - click on the female adult bald eagle link)
University of Puget Sound - Eagle Wing:

Fox Chapel (the generous hosts of this board) has published a great reference series on birds of prey by Denny Rogers. Anybody who wants to do raptors should have these as reference. Each book has detailed (and I mean DETAILED) illustrations of the entire bird, from skeleton to feathers. No how-to, but no how-to wil do any good without a good reference foundation.
Here's a link to the book:
The Illustrated Bald Eagle

Have fun, and again...WELCOME....
Whispering Eagle Studio
"Painting is a contact sport." --- Me
"Bad decisions make good stories." - Anonymous

Last edited by LCorbett; 09-23-2007 at 01:52 AM. Reason: Repaired bad link for Skull Site
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