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Taxidermy Mount Shelf Life

Discussion in 'Beginners' started by dmac1175, Apr 21, 2022.

  1. dmac1175

    dmac1175 Active Member

    I have been doing taxidermy for around 10 years so I'm not really a beginner but not been doing it for a long time either.
    My question is how long should mounts look good and not deteriorate or fade? I believe that if hides are properly tanned and all mounts (birds, furbearers, shoulder mounts) are kept in a climate controlled environment and kept out if direct sunlight and cleaned they will last many years and should still look as good as when they were mounted. Am I correct?
  2. 13 point

    13 point Well-Known Member

    Yes you are correct in your assumptions. In those conditions you described mounts should last a good 25 plus years . Im still in touch with my first client from 36 years ago as he is now my sons father in law and his mounts are kept in the basement of his house no windows and they are still in great shape , it’s kinda cool because he killed a deer and got it mounted every year so you can see my progression on my mounts also . But if done correctly and kept correctly they will last forever.
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2022

  3. Frank E. Kotula

    Frank E. Kotula master, judge, instructor

    If done correctly as stated a lifetime and more. The secret is correctly!
    tem likes this.
  4. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    I'm not so sure about that, Frank. My very first mount was a black fox squirrel and it was done before J.W. Ellwood told me about Calorex. Imy made a form with coathangers and twine wrapped cotton. I didn't split lips or open ears. I simply salted the raw hide and sewed it over coat hanger form. It lasted 40 years before my parents house burned down. I'd pulled the tail that only had a coat hanger wire inside. The last time I saw it, the feet were completely intact and no hair was missing. It looked just as bad as the day it was mounted.
    Last edited: May 7, 2022
  5. dmac1175

    dmac1175 Active Member

    Thanks for the replies
  6. pir^2h

    pir^2h Retrievers give you the bird

    My oldest mount I still have is thirty-seven years old, a pheasant. Looks as good as the day I finished it. I did repaint the waddles once about ten years ago. That did fade with time. Done right a mount should last much longer than this.
    dmac1175 likes this.
  7. George

    George The older I get, the better I was.

    Ducks waddle, pheasants have wattles. Sorry. Couldn't help myself, especially with a school teacher.
    pir^2h and msestak like this.
  8. Kastaway

    Kastaway Taxidermist, Pioneer of Freeze Drying 1969

    Have a few of my first mounts, deer and ducks. Did them in 1960. Still fine.
  9. pir^2h

    pir^2h Retrievers give you the bird

    I never claimed to be an English teacher George! Numbers are my game. Thanks for the correction.
    George likes this.