First find your cow: a "live" cow, which has been specifically slaughtered for meat, costs around pounds 1,500. Those on a budget should negotiate with local farmers or an abattoir for a so-called "dead" cow. Because the cow has died of natural causes and is unfit to eat, you might be able to pick one up for a few hundred.

You will need a meat saw: essential for that "split sides" effect. Cost ranges from early hundreds to thousands of pounds for high-tech bone saws, noted for their smooth as butter effect. A manual bone saw might not give that clean line, so admired by Hirst fans, but a few ragged edges can't be helped. If a bone saw eludes you, then Robert Dyas do a good range of powered Jigsaws starting from pounds 22.

Formaldehyde: cost varies according to quantity, although it is not an expensive substance. Get in touch with your local pathology lab who will probably have a cheap supplier to hand.

Aquarium: could well be the most expensive item. A decent aquarium, and remember you need two, will cost you a lot of money. No way round this one if you want the authentic Hirst look. But Seapets do a good range starting from pounds 41.45 for a 4ft aquarium.