Preset eyes

Submitted by Brandon Barton on 11/5/99. ( )

This is to be my first deer mount, a mule deer. I was planning on using a mule deer manikin from John Rinehart with preset eyes. I know nothing about the differencein manikins, but i figured preset eyes would make the mount easier. What do you guys think? Also, the reason i chose john Rinehart is because that is the only catalog i have with manikins with preset eyes.


brandon barton

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This response submitted by Mick on 11/5/99. ( )

Without venturing too far out onto thin ice here, I will say that I am not a fan of preset eyes. I have tried them,just to say I did, but in my humble opinion the amount of actual time saved was negligable. It just seemed to me that instead of spending the time setting and modeling the eyes with critter clay, I instead spent it triming and preping the foam, and then pinning the eye skin in place. Try it both ways and then judge for yourself. As a side note though, if you have aspirations of doing taxidermy for others, and you've chosen to use "pre-set" eyes, all of your deer mounts will have exactly the same look and expression. Good or bad? That's entirely up to you. I buy into the old saying "the eyes are the windows to the soul", and I like the flexability of being able to adjust, in order to capture the mood I'm trying to impart.If you decide to go ahead and use "pre-set" materials in the beginning, just keep an eye out, that you don't allow these "aids" to become a crutch, for what happens when you're called upon to mount a specimen that dosen't offer commercial shortcuts such as "pre-set" eyes, or even earliners?
Good luck


This response submitted by Brandon Barton on 11/5/99. ( )

Thanks mick. i agree totally with what you say. Thanks for the help and honesty.

I did my first mount on one.

This response submitted by Jim R. on 11/5/99. ( )

Yes I would recommend using Rineharts form for your first or
any mount for that matter. I think it was a great confidence
booster to be able to have a good looking mount the first time.
Not only are the eyes easy to do but also the brain ridge
works great for setting the antlers, without all the filling
and wedges etc. I am not saying that you shouldn't use other
forms and be creative after you have done a few, but I really
had fun and enjoyed the ease of using Rinharts forms.
good luck and have a blast. Jim R.

Go ahead..

This response submitted by JimTucker on 11/6/99. ( )

and try the Rinehart forms. Although I use Buckeye Mannikins for my deer I still use quite alot of the Rinehart forms for exotics and boar. The pre-set eyes are easier for experienced taxidermists but if you have never mounted anything they will be just as difficult as setting your own. Experience is the only way to learn, but Rineharts put out a quality product don't be afraid to use them.

Both Jims are Right

This response submitted by Turtle on 11/8/99. ( )

Mick also makes a good point about the crutch thing. The main thing I picked up on was that this is Brandon's FIRST deer mount. Hey guys, lets not forget, everybody is a beginner at one point. My first two deer heads were on Rinehart mannikins. I have since then used various others and set my own eyes. There are pros and cons for both methods.

Brandon, for a beginner, I think the pre-set eyes would be easier for you to get a decent looking mount for your first one. You will learn from that one. Then if you get hooked on taxidermy, you can try other things as you gain knowledge and confidence. Just my 2 cents. Turtle

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