Converting Water Keels?

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Converting Water Keels?

Postby preacherdan » Sun Aug 18, 2013 8:43 pm

I came across about 20 older mallard water keel decoys and i picked them up for like $12 bucks, anyway i had thought first about cutting them to make field shells, but now i am wondering, should i paint these into divers? I mean thats about $300 worth of diver decoys i could aquire with not much money invested, my question is #1 , being water keel ( which i am ignorant of ive never used water keel) will they work in big open water? #2 is there a cheap effective way to weight water keel deeks? #3 have any of you tried this and had any luck?
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby Frank Lopez » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:07 pm

Dan,

Sometimes there's two holes in a water keel. You need to make sure that the small hole near the front is sealed first. You can seal it with hot glue or something similar, but I prefer silicone caulking. Seal the front hole if it has one. Next, fill the keel with sand. Leave about half inch of space so that you can seal the rear hole. Seal the rear hole with the silicone caulking. Paint 'em up and have at it. They work great.

Frank
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby staticarc » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:09 pm

Easy way to fix water keel is to slide a lead strap weight inside keel.
Drill hole through keel to line up with hole in strap weight and insert little bolt and nut.
Beats going through aggravation of pouring sand and sealing.

Pretty easy to paint into diver deeks too. Black bodies with a little white here and there .
Shoulda tried em that last swing...
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby preacherdan » Sun Aug 18, 2013 9:46 pm

Sounds good both sound like they would work well, what kindve paint do i use?
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby Bullfrog26692 » Mon Aug 19, 2013 5:11 am

Prime with this stuff, it works good

image.jpg
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby dakotashooter2 » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:09 am

Get a bag of quickcrete, mix as much as you need and fill the keels. I used to use strap weights but the keels would just keep dribbling water when you picked them up. I tried sealing the ends and filling with sand but some always seemed to leak. The concrete/cement gets hard, fills the hole and doesn't go anywhere.
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby preacherdan » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:12 am

Anyone got any pics of this sortve project theyve done in the past?
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby scruggs12 » Mon Aug 19, 2013 7:34 am

Water keels should be fine in open water, unless it is the windiest, choppiest of days. Pintail water keels will tip, but I have never had a mallard water keel tip unless I threw it wrong. The beauty of water keel decoys is they are lighter and are easier to haul if you are walking in or paddling a smaller boat. If you are mainly diver hunting and are hauling everything with a big boat, it won't matter. Another option would be to try the Gorilla foam on the ends, fill with sand in between. The concrete sounds like a really good idea too, but it will be very heavy. Again, if you have a big boat to haul, it won't matter.
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby preacherdan » Mon Aug 19, 2013 10:22 am

How are u pouring the crete? Decoy inverted sitting on butt?
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby Anas rubripes » Mon Aug 19, 2013 1:09 pm

preacherdan wrote: #2 is there a cheap effective way to weight water keel deeks?


Sand and hot glue. Cheapest, fasted, and easiest to use.

I did two dozen last year and only one plug came out. You don't have to fill them the whole way either and they'll be a little lighter but still right themselves if you're tossing them.
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby preacherdan » Mon Aug 19, 2013 4:06 pm

Thanks guys its giving me alot of ideas, are you using any kind of paint thinner to rub it down before you spray on the primer? And are yall free handing these or do you have a small air spray gun? Or are you taping each step?
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby staticarc » Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:56 pm

I would paint with a brush. Divers don't need much special detail, no sense in taping. That is time consuming and aggravating because you can't ever get the tape to shape properly.
Paint body first, then sides and wing patches, then bills last.
Shoulda tried em that last swing...
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby dakotashooter2 » Tue Aug 20, 2013 7:39 am

You need to mix the concrete on the "wet" side. I used a funnel to pour it in and a screwdriver to push out any air gaps. Mortar mix might be better because you don't have the rocks to contend with. As far as weight it's no heavier than sand filled keels.
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Re: Converting Water Keels?

Postby loon » Sun Aug 25, 2013 7:21 am

I tried using sand and a funnel but the sand kept clumping up would've probably work better if it was dryer. So instead I used Pea gravel they easily fit through the opening at the back of the water keel and then you silicone caulk to plug the two holes it didn't take very long to do two dozen decoys while watching a movie.
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