Project: Triceratops

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September 28, 2009 1:17 PM
posted by Ilona Weyers

The preparations being finished, the skull needs to be wrapped for transport. Allen Shaw and Dan Pickering, who normally staff PaleoLab, are in Japan packing up an exhibit this week. Meanwhile, Norm Wuerthele stuffs cotton ball-filled plastic bags into the cavities of the skull to stabilize them.


Next comes a layer of aluminum foil that is molded around the entire skull.


A final layer of plastic will protect the specimen from moisture.


The Triceratops skull is ready to be moved.

September 27, 2009 12:51 p.m.
posted by Ilona Weyers

The Skull is Finished
Our preparators have finished the skull of the Triceratops. Every inch has been cleaned as much as possible and specialty glues have been applied to stabilize the specimen.


The teeth are clearly visible.


This is a view of the interior of the skull.

September 18, 2009 12:17 p.m.
posted by Ilona Weyers

Neck Vertebrae
A final bit of preparation has to be done on the neck vertebrae. The skull would fit to the right of the picture below.


The tags indicate where the cervical ribs were protruding. They had to be separated because they were too delicate for the upcoming move.


September 03, 2009 02:41 PM
posted by Allen Shaw

We are restoring a Triceratops skull in PaleoLab. We recently restored another Triceratops skull that is now on display in Dinosaurs in Their Time. Take a look at the Triceratops skull in PaleoLab and see if you can see any differences between the two. The skull in PaleoLab is definitely more crushed and distorted but it is still a well-preserved and awe-inspiring specimen.

Triceratops skull mount 026.jpg

DITT Triceratops 001.jpg

September 22, 2008 02:38 PM
posted by Ilona Weyers

How many people does it take to move one skull? A lot!
The PaleoLab staff found out in September 2008 when we moved our newest project, the preparation of a Triceratops skull, into the work area.

LACM Tri skull LACM151459 move 021.jpg

The skull and the surrounding rock are protected with a thick plaster jacket during transport. Together they weigh more than a ton.

LACM Tri skull LACM151459 004.jpg

When the jacket is cut with an electric saw the upper half is lifted up and one side of the Triceratops skull is revealed. Preparator and head of the Paleolab Allen Shaw is excited about the new project. Now begins the long work of extricating all of it from the sorrounding rock, called "matrix".

LACM Tri skull LACM151459 open 038.jpg

September 22, 2008 02:20 PM
posted by Ilona Weyers

When the plaster is removed from one side of the specimen we can see the general outline of one side of the skull. It is still covered with a thin layer of matrix. The darker, brown areas are the actual fossilized bone.

LACM Tri skull LACM151459 open 007.jpg

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