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Thread: Skull Cleaning Question

  1. #1

    Default Skull Cleaning Question

    This is a question for all the taxidermists here. I know how to clean my own skulls, but recently a friend of mine asked me to clean a bear skull for him and he said he wanted to pay me to do it. My question is, what is a fair price to charge? From start to finish, boiling, cleaning, whitening, gluing, and lacquering. I don't want to overcharge him, but what's a fair price?

  2. #2
    Member Steven_JR's Avatar
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    I'm not positive on this, but I believe you have to have a license to practice taxidermy before you are able to accept payment from anyone.

    Aside from that, I'd suggest checking out a couple taxidermy websites to see what the pro's charge and go from there.

  3. #3
    Member Tyin 1 On's Avatar
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    Personally they are crazy priced anymore. I used to pay 50$ for deer and I have seen black bear skull getting done for 225-250$. For a friend I would say 100-150 is fair. Taxidermist charge the crazy prices cause it sucks to do and they can get away with it. I have a better way to do it so I do all my own now.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by Steven_JR View Post
    I'm not positive on this, but I believe you have to have a license to practice taxidermy before you are able to accept payment from anyone.

    Aside from that, I'd suggest checking out a couple taxidermy websites to see what the pro's charge and go from there.
    Oops, what I meant to say is I have this friend who has a friend that wants him to clean a skull. NOT ME, no I wouldn't think about doing something like that. Anyhow, thanks for the advice.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tyin 1 On View Post
    Personally they are crazy priced anymore. I used to pay 50$ for deer and I have seen black bear skull getting done for 225-250$. For a friend I would say 100-150 is fair. Taxidermist charge the crazy prices cause it sucks to do and they can get away with it. I have a better way to do it so I do all my own now.
    Thanks for the advice. Good tips.

  5. #5
    Member FullCryHounds's Avatar
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    I'm currently at $110 for black bears. Beetle cleaned, no boiling. Degreased, whitened and sealed. Takes about 2-4 months depending on how many weeks of degreasing the skull needs.

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    Member Frostbitten's Avatar
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    Maceration makes for a much nicer mount than boiling as the nasal bones will remain intact. Takes longer, but way nicer end result.

  7. #7
    Member FishGod's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Frostbitten View Post
    Maceration makes for a much nicer mount than boiling as the nasal bones will remain intact. Takes longer, but way nicer end result.
    I agree 100%, but boy does it stink!!!!
    Your bait stinks and your boat is ugly

  8. #8
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Lice in the shrimp pots is the best method, imo.
    Bk
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    Member Bullelkklr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bkmail View Post
    Lice in the shrimp pots is the best method, imo.
    Bk
    just make sure to put it in a fine mesh bag (potato bag) so the teeth don't stay in the drink.

  10. #10
    Moderator bkmail's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bullelkklr View Post
    just make sure to put it in a fine mesh bag (potato bag) so the teeth don't stay in the drink.
    Randy,
    Fresh skulls are just fine without a bag as the teeth are still rock solid. Ie.... bear skulls in the spring or Deer skulls in the fall right after harvesting.
    Older or dried out skulls were the skull has shrunk a bit and the material around the tooth has receeded it would be a good practice to bag them to prevent losing them. Thanks for the reminder!
    Bk
    BK Marine Services 232-6399
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