Ok here's probly another stupid question on my part. but i have really gotten swamped lately with fish mount's and doing replica's for guys but i feel i am loseing a few dollars by only charging a small fee of like 40 dollars per fish since i am still new . guys what is a good price that i can at least make some proffit?
Return to Fish Taxidermy Category Menu
Add Up all the cost for your supplies, Then add up the amount of time it takes you to do a fish mount. Now, How much do you charge for one hour of work. Dont forget your overhead (the amount of power, water, freazer space, etc) add it all up and there you go. But I can tell you this $40.00 per inch is way, way to low. Most fishermen wont even think twice about spending big money on catching fish, so it should be no different when they get it mounted!
Last year my per hour expenses were just over $10 an hour. With the average fish taking 6-8 hours I wouldn't even make my expenses, not to mention paying myself a wage. And then there is the "profit" that you mention. Want to make a living? Go see if McDonalds will hire you, because taxidermy will not pay your bills at $40 a fish.
Sam, you can figure this out real easy, and you should do it this way and not care what the other person is charging, they might not be charging enough.
How many hours do you have invested.
What is your hourly rate of pay,
in over time at your regular job. $18.00 X 1.5= $27.00
What is the monthly health insurance premium $225.00
What is the monthly life insurance premium $45.00
How much for rent , electric, gas, water, sewer per month. $500.00
How much for buisness insurance per month. $85.00
How much for auto payment and insurance per month. $350.00
Take total dollars, and divide by 52 to get total cost per week, and the devide that by 40 hours a week, and that is what your cost per hour is to stay in business to paint fish. Any thing other than working out a bugget such as this, and you are giving away your time and money.
Take total number of hours in job of paiting fish, and times that into the dollars per hour, to get the cost of your time, then add the cost of materials in the fish, plus profit, that, is what it cost you to paint a fish.
After much thought I decided that I can charge $10.00 per inch and make a little profit on my reproductions. I also charge by the inch for all my fish work and this works out great. I have a minimun of $75.00 on any kind of fish work. Hope this helps you, if you do the work you should get paid for it.
I charge $8.00 an inch for a skin mounted freshwater fish such as panfish,bass,walleye.I charge $10.00 /inch for the same in pike,musky,and trout. Repros are 12/inch one side. If you are doing it for fun and just want to cover your cost of fish materials I guess your $40.00 /fish is ok for you.
What's the reason for charging fish mounts by the inch? Using Rinehart's catalog prices, the difference between a 14" bass mannikin and a 24" bass mannikin is $2.45. The difference between 12 mm flex eyes and 18 mm flex eyes is $2.00. The difference in supplies (epoxy, hide paste, staples, paint, etc.) for a 14" and a 24" bass might be a few more dollars. Then at $10.00/inch the customer pays $100.00 more for a 24" bass than a 14"er. One could conclude that a customer with the 14" bass is getting a great deal, or the customer with the 24" bass was getting gouged. All I am saying is that IMHO charging fish by the inch is illogical. I even know guys who charge by the inch....length + girth x their rate!
Sam, I think you and I see eye to eye on charging by the fish. I have charged that way for 30 years, and had no complaints. To be sure, some customers will leave when they hear $260.00 for ANY bass, but enough stay that I keep busy. I think $40.00/fish is WAY too low. Go to ebay and see what buyers pay for mounts. Bottom line? If I were in your situation, I wouldn't do ANY fish for less than $100.00.
I would like to expand on that thought however,each fish is different and can require additional work---the by inch price has been a guide at wich I price the "job". A spawning pitted fish will require extra time and therefore extra dollars to complete correctly. How about that heavily spotted rainbow or brown that adds an additional 40 minutes onto a paint job. Assuming you are ordering your reproductions: we all know not all suppliers produce the same quality blanks. I add additional fees where applicable. Set your price and pay yourself what YOU are worth. Each taxidermist must place a value on their time. What is yours worth?
This is another one of those posts that lets everyone brag about how much they get to do a fish and tell the poster how dumb you are for charging too little.
First of all, what are you worth? How good are ya? If I had a dollar in my pocket for every "ten and twelve dollar an inch" fish I have seen that was crap, I'd be richer. (Sometimes it amazes me what a person will pay for and hang in the den.) How can anyone tell you how much to charge for a fish in the first place? Price is what the market will bear. Crap floats but in this industry the better art rises to the top, regardless of price.
You should by now have at least some idea about where your fish fit into the ladder of excellence. Worst is on the bottom, best is on the top. Somewhere along that scale are your fish. You can charge anything you like for the fish, you will find out the worth of your endeavor when folks quit paying your price.
You don't wanna know what I get an inch.