European deer mounts offer hunters an inexpensive alternative to cape mounts. While cape mounts display a deer's hair-covered upper body, a European mount simply displays the deer's flesh-less skull and antlers. Hunters can make their own European deer mounts, as opposed to cape mounts that require skilled professionals. After you boil and prepare the deer skull, you can attach the European deer mount to your chosen wood plaque.
Choose a wooden plaque on which to mount your prepared European deer skull. You may also make your own mount from any section of wood that measures at least 5 inches by 8 inches to accommodate the deer head.
Sandpaper the wood mounting plaque to prepare for finishing. You cannot finish the wood with paint or stain after you attach the deer head. Remove dusting sand from the plaque with a tack cloth.
Paint or stain the plaque as desired. Use a paintbrush and produce brush strokes that mimic the grain of the wood, as this prevents others from easily detecting the brush strokes. Allow the plaque to dry overnight or for a couple days until completely dry.
Have an assistant hold the deer skull. Your assistant should hold the skull face in his hands with the antlers pointing towards him, exposing the full back and bottom of the skull to you.
Set the wooden plaque over the back of the deer skull. The skull will not sit flush against the plaque as the back of the skull does not provide any perfectly flat surfaces.
Move the plaque around to center the skull in the middle of the plaque. Communicate with your assistant to move the plaque or skull into the necessary position.
Have your assistant hold the skull firmly as you hold the plaque into place with one hand and operate the drill or power screwdriver with your free hand.
Drive a minimum of two drywall screws through the wooden plaque and into the back of the deer skull. Use screws measuring approximately two inches longer than the depth of the wooden plague. Place one screw at the top of the skull and drill slowly to prevent cracking and splitting the skull. Place the second screw through the roof of the deer's mouth.
- whitetail buck headshot. image by Bruce MacQueen from Fotolia.com