Last spring I decided that my old fiberglass duck boat was beyond repair since I deduced that all the gel-coat in the world was only going to make an expensive anchor. So I sweet-talked the wife into letting me use some of our tax returns to purchase my neighbors older aluminum duck boat that he was selling for an upgrade. It is a 14 foot Gregor with a 25 Evinrude that has been meticulously maintained. Being that they are family friends and I knew the boat was "ducky" helped seal the deal.
On my previous boat I had always toyed with the notion to construct a boat blind but never could devise the perfect design. Well thanks to the internet and the hunting page here on Ifish, I was able to gleen enough information to construct what I think will work as a boat blind.
Here is the boat with the blind in the down position, strapped and ready to go.
Back view with the blind in the up position.
Side view with the blind up.
Top view with blind open.
Now for the particulars:
- I used 3/4 inch conduit that I had leftover from a home improvement project otherwise I probably would have used something lighter. It does provide some pretty nice structure so any clumsiness from occupants shouldn't ruin it.
- I used 3/4 inch boat top mounting hardware. I should forewarn anybody who wants to do this that the conduit is just a smidge to big to fit into the mounting hardware. So since it was plastic and the conduit is metal I brought out the torch and heated up the conduit and then pushed the conduit into the plastic. It was like butter with a burning plastic smell .
- I initially was going to make it a scissor blind but I could not make the angles to my desired needs so I designed it more like the ones found in some of the larger outdoor catalogs.
- By going the route I chose I needed to create some brackets that would affix the blind into the up position. That was pretty easy and then I had 4 relatively large cotter pins to hold it in place.
- I was able to find a really good deal on some of the Avery grass sheets on Ebay. I got 8 of them for less than the price of 4 including shipping than if I had purchased from a major outdoor catalog.
- I purchased some commercial shrimp netting, it was a remnant so I got it for 1/2 price and dyed it brown since it was bone white. I have found that my bone white complection scares the heck out of ducks so why have the inside of my blind be the same.
- I used some stainless eye screws in the gunnel to run some rubber coated (brown) clothsline along the gunnel and then angled up to the corner of each side of the conduit mount.
- I then attached the netting to the conduit top and to the clothsline on the gunnel. I wish I had taken some pictures of this but it was raining and well the camera is expensive.
- Once the netting was attached I was able to put the grass mats on. Black zip-ties are the bomb! Actually zip-ties and duct tape are essential items and I will be getting my son two rolls of duct tape and the Costco container of zip-ties for his birthday .
- I used some olive-drab spray paint to cover any of the bright spots of the conduit and brackets.
I have not had the chance to hunt out of it yet but I have sat in it with my gear on and called to a few ducks flying over the house. They didn't come in range but if they had.....I was without a gun so they would have been safe. I will make sure to get pictures when it gets some blood in it.