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COUSIN GO A LITTLE BEAR YESTERDAY. WANTS A FULL BODY MOUNT, WHAT IS THE GOING RATE IS S.W. PA.?
 

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I guess it depends on what is a little bear. The 35 lb little bears go for about $600 plus or minus. I had a customer refer to a 200 lb bear as a little bear (that group had shot one that was near 600 lbs, so the 200 lb'er was the "little bear") Most of those type bears are priced per foot. Prices vary from $260-$320 per foot. Hope this helps.
 

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Stuffer, you are under cutting yourself. The going rate around here is 270-320 a ft
 

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First off you want to check out your taxidermists work. Your buddies opinion isn't necessarily the right opinion. The price is irrelevant if you want a piece that is going to last a lifetime! I'm sure you have an excellent taxidermist in your area. If not GO THE DISTANCE!!!!
 

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Stuffer, Are you crazy? 4' bear, $800.00? $400 for a form, parts, shipping, $150 for tanning and shipping, plus a base you gotta build, taxes you have to pay, electric you use, hide paste, clay, etc, one day to flesh, split and salt. One day to mount it, half a day to finish it, half a day to build a base, and you make $200, maybe?
 

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Discussion Starter #8
THANKS GUYS! I SAW MY COUSIN LASTNIGHT AND WE GOT ON THE MCKENZIE SITE SO HE COULD SEE THE FORMS AND WHAT THEY COST... I USED TO HAVE A FRIEND LOCALLY WHO WAS A TAXI AND I USED TO HELP HIM ESPECIALLY IN BEAR SEASON. AND I EXPLAINED TO HIM WHAT ALL WAS INVOLVED, I WASN'T AWARE OF THE FORM PRICES... WOW. PLUS EYES,JAW SET, TOLD HIM THAT 99% OF THE GUYS SEND THE HIDES OUT BECAUSE OF THE WORK REQUIRED. LOKE DAVE SAID ABOVE, YOU HAVE $400-500 IN YOUR COSTS BEFORE LABOR.
 

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Also when i got my bear i asked a couple of guys how many bear they have done i let one guy do it for a little more but he will do 8-9 bears a yr the other guy does maybe one so to put out that kind of money check around
 

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Not to mention that most bears REQUIRE alterations. I have that added into my price as well.
 

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My taxi charges $350/foot regardless of the size of the bear.
 

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my buddy got a quote of 290$ a foot...and that was after name dropping from a regular client that gets breaks..so that may or may not got it a bit lower..

found an Ohio taxi or 2 to do it for 750 (70 or so lb boar) but i wouldnt take ANYTHING to an ohio taxi...not one that has low prices! my buddies love the Ohio taxis that pop out a few hundred deer heads a year for under 300$...i laugh...they look like turds...but they dont see it SOMEHOW...how cant you see stitches that you should never see? or staples? or CRAZY stitch lines..looks like a blind man caped it and sewed it back after tanning..i could go on for hours...

generally, you get what you pay for in taxi work...once you hit the higher end, you STILL gotta shop around and find a taxi YOU like...ive seen crap shops have high prices..buddy paid like 350$ for a deer head(10yrs back..) guy gave him back a crappy mounted head and a bit of the neck mounted...said the rest fell apart...knowing my buddy i thought maybe he let it hang too long and it got too warm and the hair slipped...turns out it was killed a few hours prior and it was COLD that day....taxis fault...so gotta becareful and do your homework...

alot of guys goto the cheapest price they can find...those guys calling around wouldnt know the difference between a good mount and a bad one so they dont care about anything more than price...
 

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OK guys here I go, I have people call and wonder what I charge. I tell them $200.00 a ft. and they freak out and crowl and complain about the price. My price is what it is because I need customers (just getting my shop agoing). If I am to high then they will take it somewhere else, and complain to that taxidermist that my prices stink. I don't make a killing by doing this, and yes I know about all the bills ( my wife reminds me ) But I just try to get my work out there so I can get more people thru the door later down the road.. Later Stuffer
 

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thats VERY understandable stuffer...

but remember, scary low will scare serious inquiries away...

though, a serious shopper does it before he got somethin dead...doesnt care a lick about price, and doesnt shop by phone and price..

when i was looking for a taxi, i called, arranged appointments, met with the taxi, and visited their shop and talked to them in person...looked at their work and their show room if they had one...i didnt talk price..i found a guy whose work i like and now when i got somethin dead, i take it to him and tell him what i want done and then i ask what it will run me...the way i look at taxidermy is, im getting it mounted for a reason..its a rarity or not your everyday critter, its special to me, its large, etc etc...but always a REASON...plain and simple i want that critter on my wall forever...i want that critter to look as good as it did on my wall as it did when it was alive..if it meets all that and i want it mounted, i dont care about numbers as long as it isnt crazy stupid high...

definently gotta get the work and name out there....but dont forget, sooner or later, your going to want to raise the price to match the quality of work..dont wanna sale yourself short forever...so jacking the price to customers already used to that 200/ft will potentially send them away upset in the future...just a thought...i know if i was paying 200 a foot and next year my taxi wanted 300 a foot, id scratch my head as i likely walked away..be tough to swallow a 100$ a ft increase...and alot of taxis charge about 300 a ft...
 

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Stuffer I find it hard to believe that someone out there is doing them cheaper. I thought that same thing when I started my business but like mauser06 said you can't start out that cheap then jump your prices to much. Last year I charged $350/ft. I got in 2 bears. I am getting overwhelmed with deer this year so I wasn't really wanting any bear so I raised my price to $400/ft. I got in 7 this year. Not one person complained about my prices. I can see you just starting out, being less expensive than others but you need to make a living and at those prices you are going to be eating a lot of oodles of noodles and dry toast!
 

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$400.00 ft. You got to be kidding. If I did that here,I would be lucky to get one in to mount. I printed this off to hang in my shop. The next guy or gal to complain, I will say read this folks. Maybe next year my price will go up some. What do you guys charge for a whitetail shoulder mount? $350.00 Thanks for reading Stuffer
 

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i paid 425 or 450 for my deer shoulder mount....its about the going rate here anymore..most guys here are 350-450...

dont know about the going rate for bear...but my buddy was quoted 290 a foot for a small bear...that was after dropping a reference name of a guy that takes ALOT of critters to that guy...so he may be even higher i dont know if the name helped or not..

maybe call around to local taxis in your area and see what they are charging for mounts to get an idea of where your prices need to be...thats what id do if i were a taxi....wish i knew i could make a living doing taxi work...i think id love it...i just like that kinda stuff...i also think id love gunsmithing...same deal though..just know the reality of it is that its hard to make a living doing it...though, im laid off from my seasonal work....hmmmm i could do either in my off time and work seasonal for the rest of my days.....get to see amazing places of the country in the spring and summer..come home and hunt and work on guns or stuff critters all fall/winter..hmmmmmm
 

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Stuffer said:
$400.00 ft. You got to be kidding. If I did that here,I would be lucky to get one in to mount. I printed this off to hang in my shop. The next guy or gal to complain, I will say read this folks. Maybe next year my price will go up some. What do you guys charge for a whitetail shoulder mount? $350.00 Thanks for reading Stuffer
Jesse...you DESPERATELY need to take a Sales and Marketing Course from my wife, Christie. Dave took her course last year and look what he's doing this year.
Doing what you're doing is not helping anyone. Not you, your wife and kids, your clients or the industry in general.
Get some Marketing advice before you self destruct.
 

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I've never been able to get much of the market in my area. I've had plenty of good solid customers refer me to buddies who just won't bring stuff to me, either from them being cheapos or they are sexist or something. I am sure if I did Paul C's wifes course I could figure out what I am doing wrong and correct it. I am a total introvert, have an anxiety disorder, and suffer from depression bouts, so it is hard for me to get motivated to do anything different or "all out". But dangit I still love doing taxidermy! Don't worry, I do have a pleasant personality and some people skills, so the business end of talent is there.

I get the price shopper calls. A bunch of years back I actually had a guy start to argue with me why I charged 300.00 for a fox mount when this other guy was doing them for 190.00 ( I charge 450.00 now for a closed mouth fox-does not include a base/habitat at this price). And yesterday my parents of all people were saying I should have an economy deer sh price along with my regular price. I told them that I do the quality I do and I refuse to cut any corners, and to do a lower job is just something I am incapable of doing! My loyal customers have no problem paying what I charge, in fact I have 1 who is still a teen who says I should be charging more! He says I am one of the cheaper taxidermists! He must be comparing my prices with the top taxidermists ( award winning) in the region, because there are plenty of lowballers around. This kid has an eye for quality I guess.

A word to the wise: this is not an easy business unless you are a cruddy lowballer who doesn't mind a 5 year business LOL, that's about the max shelflife for one, unless they are BSing extroverts who really should have been in politics. I'd say that when you first start out in taxidermy, that you have a backup plan, either keeping a job you already have, or having a spouse who makes alot of money, or you live with your parents ( like me LOL- but then we have the acreage and whatnot back here).
 
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