I just got my roll of tyvek yesterday and started to make my northwinds for the fall. I have it figured that I should get 350 decoys out of one roll with the size pattern that I have. I can't wait to hunt over them.
I ordered my tyvek from Fiber Mark. They were the cheapest. The phone number for them is 1-800-784-8558. The smallest that you can order is 100yds long by 60 inches wide. It is the #1443 tyvek, which is a soft tyvek. I paid $2.22 per yard and shipping was $15 so total to my house in Fargo was $237.
The pattern that I used was one that I made myself because I wanted to get more decoys out of a roll. It is almost identical to the northwind design except that it is a little shorter and about two inches narrower. It is almost impossible to tell the difference when mine and northwinds are side by side. If you are interested in the pattern let me know.
For the snows to put on the black wing tip I have just used a black perminent marker. This is alot less messy and I think that it looks just as good as black spray paint. The blues are going to be painted a base coat of maybe two colors and I am going to make a stencil for the feather patterns. I have not really figured out how I am going to do this yet but I don't think that it will be a big deal.
Here is a run down of the costs involved:
bodies $237/350 decoys $0.677 per body
wood stakes from scheels $50/200 stakes $0.25
plastic strapping for the neck band FREE (I got mine at Pepsi)
Sewing ? My mom sews tents so she is going to do them for me. This is the hardest part of the whole deal.
I'm not exactly sure how I am going to attach the bodies to the stake just yet but I have a few ideas to test out. I'm thinking a type of hardwood disk. Any ideas???
I hope that this helped you out if you have any questions or want to come over and take a look at them let me know.
Attach them to the stake using a bolt retainer. They just push on...I have 2000 this way. I would suggest putting a grommet for the stake holes otherwise they will rip. Paint sticks to the body very well. I made my stencil out of masonite (sp) with a rotozip.
Thanks a ton Northup. That is a great idea for attaching the decoys. Where did you get the grommets and how do you attach them? I guess if I'm going to do this i might as well go all the way and do it right the first time. What kind of heads do you get. I thought that you mentioned on another site that Texas Hunting Products sells heads. How do these heads go on the stake?
Well, I put in almost 5000 grommets last spring so I bought a press from Lord and Hodges. The press and the tool to set the grommets was about $350. Grommets are cheap some like $.05 or less (don't remember exactly). You can buy a hand tool to set them with hammer for something like $20 and the tool to punch the hole was $17. They have real good quality stuff. If or when I get around to making some Northwinds I'm going to use a wider band. Big enough to set the grommet in it. I put a piece of duct tape on the decoys I did last winter for reinforcement. Putting the grommet through the band would eliminate that step. It might be harder if you set the grommets by hand. My press punches the hole before it set the grommet.
I use a combination of Northwind and THP heads. I use a 7/16 dowel for all my stakes so I just drilled the hole out to fit the stake. I never even glued them on...they stay on pretty well. I think I will glue them this summer then drill them out if the stake breaks. Which doesn't happen much with the larger stake.
We made our own magnum Nwinds about 8 years ago and they are still going strong. We started with the heavy Tyvek that they use on houses. We scrounged a bunch of leftover rolls from contractors and then ended up buying one 9'x?' roll. We made about 150 dekes, but we went with a larger pattern, 24"x36". They really stick out and it doesn't seem to take as much wind to make them look normal. The other nice thing is that they aren't so erratic in heavy wind. We have yet to master the stake and head, though. We used cut-out plywood and masonite for heads. Have fun making them, we did.
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