Just wanting some different opinions on this matter. I am changing a McKenzie 6500 semi sneak to a head up pose for the flehmen pose. The nose has to come up quite a bit to pull the pose off. I am not looking for the short cut to get the look, I want your opinion on the right way. Lets face it, two or more ideas are better than just one and I don't want to buy McKenzie's head up form because they need too much work to correct all the problems.
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...probably would have been to buy the Joe Meder form that was already posed. But that's another story.
The method that works for me is to cut wafers across the neck. You have to be careful not to make the neck longer as the head juncture has to swivel up and not bend up. I just cut 2 wedge wafers. I run 2 heavy wires down through the head into the neck and then bend them to get the pose I'm looking for. I take the 5 inch dry wall screws and then screw everything down in place so the expanding foam won't extend anything. I wrap the form in plastic and tape it down, mix a cup of foam and pour it in. When I have it all foamed, I cut away the excess and Surfoam tool the rest to match the pose. Remove my screws, clay the holes and I'm done.
Mike - What are the problems with the McKenzie head up form? I'm working a mount now where I will be attaching a Meder Flehmen nose to a McKenzie head up form and the only "problem" I ran into was the medium Flehmen nose piece was a bit wider (maybe 1/8" wider overall) than the nose on the form. I already cut the nose off the McKenzie. I will use Apoxie Scuplt in the area behind the nose to blend it into the form. Really this is no problem at all. I'm just curious as to what you're referring to when you say "they need too much work to correct all the problems."
The head shape of the head up forms is too narrow for the height that is sculpted in to the form. Take the measurements off a white before you skin the head and try and match them to the head up forms. If you want your hair patterns and skin placement in the right spots (ie. ear placement to the lower jaw line, lower jaw line to antler base, so on and so on.) To many other forms on the market that make the job easier. Take your calipers and check eye socket to eye socket on a 6500 and take the same in the 6400U with both forms have the same eye to nose and neck measurements and look how much narrower the 6400U is. I don't do any deer mounts that I settle for fit with just the eye to nose and neck measurements, thats just not good enough. Making the form fit for skin is the only way to go. Now as far as the Meder Flehmen nose, it was made to fit his forms and if you use it on any other you will also have to match it to the form other wise it would be too easy.
I know it would be easier to use the meder form with the head up pose, but I need the 6500 for the mount I am doing. I have been using a cleaned spinal column with a elastic cord down the center to keep all my pivit pionts in the right places with out getting that broken neck look. The two wedge waffers works great and will give me what I want, but how high would you put the nose and give some idea as to the detail at the back of the head, would you stack the hide at the base?
We've all seen amorous bucks with their necks down to the ground and their noses straight up. QDMA founder, Joe Hamilton, once stated that a mature whitetail in rut will mate with anything that will stand in place long enough. So let your imagination be your guide.