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Not trying to start a fight, but honestly, how do they do it?

Discussion in 'The Taxidermy Industry' started by michael p., Apr 26, 2012.

  1. Harry Whitehead

    Harry Whitehead I love to hunt Buffalos!!!!!

    I'm done. I can't believe that you would say these things in an open forum. I see now how you make it! Just what I expected....

    OutdoorHub Mobile, the information engine of the outdoors.
  2. roundyracer

    roundyracer been to the mountain and seen the elephant.usmc 68

    Another reason why the discussion is going nowhere.Question when did the NTA start a Podiatry policy?

  3. Guys all of my antlers are hanging on 2x4s above my head out in the open for all to see.
    The one thing that just pisses me off is when someone comes and and starts counting them and does the math and says crap like $ 00,000.00 your getting rich, your making to much money. It really gets to me. I wouldn't dare ask them how much they get paid or something similar. because its none of my damn business. Just like what my total expenses and total income is. So asking in here is no different its no ones damn business but mine. sorry if your offended by that.
  4. Ron B

    Ron B Life Sucks.....Then comes the death roll!!!!

    I have to agree with you there Buckfever. I spend most of my time trying to convence people I am not getting rich!
  5. Harry Whitehead

    Harry Whitehead I love to hunt Buffalos!!!!!

    Don't worry, I won't be one of THOSE people. You've already told me what I already knew....

    OutdoorHub Mobile, the information engine of the outdoors.
  6. roundyracer

    roundyracer been to the mountain and seen the elephant.usmc 68

    How many post do I need to get 3 stars?Then Im raisaeing the hell out of my prices and buying a new 4 wheeler,pu and bass boat.
  7. I have one 10 miles away that is $7 an in, nice guy, his wife makes good $ is the only thing I can figure.
    Another has a shop 4 miles from mine, he charges $8 in, and he has a military retirement. Again nice guy, we car pooled to the state show together last month. I do know we have our price shoppers and cheapie customers in our area. I only charge $10in for warmwater (minumum $150) and $12.50 coldwater for the economy wall mount, 50% upcharge for rush service, and 75% upcharge for pedistal mounts. And I probably take in nearly double the fish (including wholesale freeze dry) that the other two do combined. A little over 2 years ago I was charging $8.50in and I was just doing it part time, I was scared to charge much more than my surrounding competition. Then as I started raising it a little here, little there, I have continued to get more busy. When people see a noticeable difference in quality, $10 or $50 doesn't matter if they have to hang it in the shed! If they only care about who is cheaper, then it doesn't matter if it is $1 or $100 if they are not concerned with quality first, there's a good chance they will go the other way. Then take 3 months to finally pay and pick it up. Good riddance.
  8. James Parrish

    James Parrish Tundra Swan...Its What's For Dinner!

    I never understood pricing fish by the inch anyway. I price them by the piece. For example, I charge $350 for a bass. The supplies for a large bass are about the same as a smaller one and they take about the same amount of time...just like a 17" deer costs about the same to mount as a 22" deer. On saltwater repros, I quote them individually. I look up the cost of the blank/eyes, then add in other supplies, shipping, labor, overhead, and profit. Maybe someone can explain to me how you come up with what you should charge per inch.
  9. Work. The amount of meat that has to be removed (jaw meat, ext..) Amount of Automotive clear coat they take, time ext....
    Big difference between a 26" northern pike and a 45" northern pike. I find a price that should fit the product, divide by length, and messed with other fish til I came up with something that worked.
    I wish I could get $350 for a bass! Though I don't do that many of them, mby 10 a year. Here the ones I take in are usually 18-20". I did the same thing you mentioned for all my repros for a long time. Then I got sick of looking everything up and having to quote every customer just to have half of them just being curious or price shopping. So now I just try to get them to stop by and see my work and pick up a price sheet.
  10. retiredfulltimer

    retiredfulltimer New Member

    James - I agree, same with bear rugs, snakes, fish, tanning etc i had a set price per species none of the inch or foot garbage. Why get 1/2 the price for a 14" bass vs. a 28", overall its almost the same amount of time and materials. Small ones were a pain and I made a bit more on them. This all stems from one taxi cutting/matching the price on another without thinking it thru.
  11. Hmmm, lets see does a 28 inch bass have twice the scales as a 14 inch bass ? If so then they are twice the work hense the per inch quote . Tip all the scales and tell me they both take the same amount of time and product to finish. Im not a fish guy so I have no clue ?? Just a thought?? I may be way off??
  12. Kerby Ross

    Kerby Ross KSU - Class of '83; U.S. Army - Infantry (83-92)

    Actually Charlie.....

    **Hmmm, lets see does a 28 inch bass have twice the scales as a 14 inch bass ? If so then they are twice the work hense the per inch quote **

    No, they do not! A 28 inch LMB has the SAME amount of scales as a 14 inch LMB, they are just bigger......and for me easier to scale tip!


  13. James Parrish

    James Parrish Tundra Swan...Its What's For Dinner!

    Being from the south, I know absolutely nothing about N. Pike. What I can relate to is striped bass. We have them in local lakes that run 10-12lbs and we get them on the coast running 40+lbs. So, my price for them is "$375 & Up". When a customer calls and asks for a price on a striper, I ask how big. If he says 28", I say $375. If he says 48", I quote $750 because I know that a 48" striper really is twice the work of one that is 28".

    The reason you can't get $350 for a bass is because you don't ask for it. I never thought anyone would pay me $295 for a duck mount when there are guys all around doing them for $200, $175, $150, or less. I learned to mount a really nice bird and over the course of a couple years raised my price to $295. At first, I went form $175 to $225 and just about had panic attacks thinking I would get no work. Well, I took in plenty. The next year, I decided to try $250. Again, I got plenty of work. Then, I went to $285 and later, $295. This past season I did not take in as many as I would have liked due to it being a really warm winter (poor migration), but still got enough work to stay busy.

    It takes a lot of faith and you have to believe in yourself to step out and raise your prices. It was one of the toughest business decisions I have ever made. I lost a lot of sleep over it thinking I would lose all my customers. The truth is that I didn't lose my good customers. I lost a lot of the dead beats and picked up a lot of new clients that (in general) pick up quickly and don't write bad checks. It has got to the point where I have had to turn away work or go full time. I contemplated going full time , but I could not in good conscience walk away from a job that I like where I can retire at age 51 with a full pension and paid medical insurance for the rest of my life. So, I decided to quit doing deer and other mammals for new clients. Oh yeah, I'm the highest priced guy around. I'm $50 higher on a deer head than my next highest competitor.
  14. Bob Mead

    Bob Mead Mead Taxidermy Studio, LLC

    I think something in this post is actually making a little sense. I never really thought about the fish/reptil pricing issue as presented above...for 24 years I have had my fish and reptile prices based on "per inch" instead of "per piece," but what you guys are saying makes sense to me. A small prairie rattler is considerably more complicated than a 60" South Texas coon-tail, but my pricing structure doesn't reflect that. Time to take a hard look at it again... :-\
  15. bmdakk

    bmdakk Report to moderator

    thats like charging by the inch on a whitetail. $4.00 an in for a 200 plus. $800 LOL or a 70 in for 280. same amount of work and prep. LOL
  16. see I was way off LOL. Thanks Kerby!
  17. DanB

    DanB New Member

    How many species of whitetails are there compared to species of fish? :p Way to many species of fish that I do to give each one a set price. So I charge by the inch. Bigger fish of the same species takes me longer then smaller ones, mainly in the painting.
  18. Kerby Ross

    Kerby Ross KSU - Class of '83; U.S. Army - Infantry (83-92)

    On fish.........

    On fish I charge by the inch......as not all fish are the same. Just like not all game heads are the same.

    Now on rattlesnakes I charge a flat rate ($400) because there isn't that much of a difference between them.

    On lizards I charge by the foot ($200/ft) as there can be quite a bit of difference between species.

    If I lived in Kansas again I would flat rate some species of fish (bass, bluegill, walleye).


  19. Well for one, we don't have 28" bass here in Mn. Two I don't know of one fish guy in the state (not saying there isn't one) that charges $350 for a bass. I used to have a set price on bass and panfish and a per inch price on muskie, pike, walleye, trout ext.... There is a huge difference in the amount of work and the clear coat is not cheap between a 30" and 54" fish! Not to mention I like to have a method to my pricing so if someone asks for a price and thinks it over, and calls back I'm not giving them a different price (as can happen with your method unless every fish is the same price then your shafting yourself on the big ones). The reason I changed the pricing was because occasionally I was getting bass that were a little bigger than average and crappies over 15". So I set the minimum charge for bass at 20 inches (so your not getting screwed on a 14" like was mentioned) and on crappie, bluegill, perch, ext.. it is a minimum of 15" charge. It works for me not to mention I freeze dry the panfish and a far as bass go I have never taken in a Largemouth or Smallmouth under 16". When it comes to different sized fish this method really works for me. And it saves figuring and fumbling around when someone calls. I personally think it sounds way more professional and trustworthy when someone can be straight with you and give you a price without having to think about it or call you back when my hands are clean, LOL.
  20. And on rugs I don't have time to fart around with every piece of the process and do everything ok. I mostly do fish and freeze drying. So with rugs I have them professionally tanned, and also pay a wholesaler to do the felt and pad. They both charge me per foot. So I charge my customers per foot.