Carving #1

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Carving #1

Postby Mallyard » Wed Feb 29, 2012 10:43 pm

Well guys,
The off season got to me, so I broke down and starting carving my first decoy. I decided on a surface feeder gadwall. Here's what I've got so far, might do some more sanding tomorrow we'll see. What do you all think? Any other decoy carvers around?

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Re: Carving #1

Postby duckdozer » Thu Mar 01, 2012 7:49 am

Again that thing is sick, let me know when you are producing them for the public, I will take 2 dz divers.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby goodkarmarising » Thu Mar 01, 2012 7:54 am

Not a decoy carver here, but that looks good. :thumbsup:
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Re: Carving #1

Postby mudpack » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:02 am

I started carving decoys in 1982. My records indicate that I've carved a little over 200 blocks. I've never done any in foam, though. Cork, Basswood, sugar pine, cedar, jelutong, tupelo, redwood (don't even try....), balsa, and one wood I can't remember the name of (grows in Kansas, has long, bean-like seed pods and huge leaves, the wood is soft and light and smells terrible when cut). EDIT: catalpa!!!

Are you going to cover the foam with burlap, or something else? One tip; styrofoam is the most difficult material to carve in the entire world. Even the opencell foam that florists use is easier to work with. Keep up the good work!!
Last edited by mudpack on Thu Mar 08, 2012 8:24 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby alanwebfoot » Thu Mar 01, 2012 8:48 am

I sold all my plastics to exclusively carve foam ,,and that looks good. mastic coated will wear like iron ,,put your weight towards the back to counter balance the extended head ,try casting bills from your ducks .Freeze them first then with a soapy finger smooth on some clear silicone caulk, a thin layer at first ,next day [or after this cures] add a thicker layer,2 part plastic casting material can be bought at hobby shops or taxidermy supply co. it makes a very durable bill ,just insert the head of a drywall screw into the liquid plastic before it hardens,and youv'e got something to pull the bill out with ,AND screw into the foam head ,a dab of gorrila glue on the threads will insure a super tight bond.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby rmb79 » Fri Mar 02, 2012 1:21 am

Looks like a snow goose to me? :smile:
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Re: Carving #1

Postby alanwebfoot » Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:32 am

you may want to reinforce the neck and body joint by inserting a long rod ,,consider using a plastic hangar lightweight but tough.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby Saltwater_Assassin » Fri Mar 02, 2012 7:52 pm

Looks great, but wood would work a whole lot better. All that carving and painting can be broken up in one little accident when using foam. Just my opinion from one carver to another. If not keep up the good work with the foam......
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Re: Carving #1

Postby Mallyard » Sat Mar 03, 2012 3:03 pm

I plan on burlaping the bird, from what I've been told for a gunning decoy burlaped foam is the way to go. Thoughts?

Alost the head is reinforced with a nail and gorrilla glue. I plan on adding epoxy around it to give it some more support also.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby Bill Herian » Sun Mar 04, 2012 4:12 pm

Looks like it will even fit in your purse :thumbsup:
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Re: Carving #1

Postby Mallyard » Sun Mar 04, 2012 4:35 pm

"No, its a satchel... Indiana Jones has one." -Hangover
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Re: Carving #1

Postby mudpack » Mon Mar 05, 2012 4:30 pm

Mallyard wrote:I plan on burlaping the bird, from what I've been told for a gunning decoy burlaped foam is the way to go. Thoughts?.

If I am going to put hours of labor into a decoy, I want it to be worth something to my grandkids. A wooden decoy will always be worth more than a plastic foam decoy....to me, to my hunting partners, to my descendants.
A wooden decoy can be more durable, will look better, and can be repaired more easily than a styrofoam decoy.

There is just something magical about a hollow, wooden decoy.

Granted, a wooden decoy has it's downsides: they can check, they can get waterlogged, and they are heavier than foam. I'd recommend doing half a dozen of each and seeing which ones work best for you.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby Saltwater_Assassin » Tue Mar 06, 2012 9:13 pm

mudpack wrote:
Mallyard wrote:I plan on burlaping the bird, from what I've been told for a gunning decoy burlaped foam is the way to go. Thoughts?.

If I am going to put hours of labor into a decoy, I want it to be worth something to my grandkids. A wooden decoy will always be worth more than a plastic foam decoy....to me, to my hunting partners, to my descendants.
A wooden decoy can be more durable, will look better, and can be repaired more easily than a styrofoam decoy.

There is just something magical about a hollow, wooden decoy.

Granted, a wooden decoy has it's downsides: they can check, they can get waterlogged, and they are heavier than foam. I'd recommend doing half a dozen of each and seeing which ones work best for you.


Same feelings here. I rather wood than any other material. However, I do not want to discourage u one bit. Just that u are carving your own birds is great in itself. Just my opinion that wood is the way to go. Use what ever u feel most comfortable with, but atleast try a couple wooden decoys just for the sake of it.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby yellowflocker » Wed Mar 07, 2012 12:20 pm

That looks pretty cool man! When you get it figured out and start to give lessons let me know. I have always wanted to learn how to do that. I had a decoy maker in OK tell me one time that it is his way of getting away from stress and everyone else. Locks himself in a room and carves the blood pressure away one slice at a time. :bow: :thumbsup:
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Re: Carving #1

Postby T Man » Sun Mar 25, 2012 9:46 pm

Gotten any paint on that puppy yet?
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Re: Carving #1

Postby Mallyard » Wed Mar 28, 2012 10:09 pm

Tman,
We will be doing a batch of decoys on saturday, I'll be sure to post up pics of the progress!
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Re: Carving #1

Postby woodduck31 » Thu Mar 29, 2012 11:46 pm

most people have no clue what is being done with foam decoys these days. I make every kind of decoys, wood, cork, foam and by far my preference for hunting is foam decoys. We still have foam decoys that my dad and I made in 1969 and the ones we make now are more durable and detailed than those are. there are things you can do with foam decoys that you just can't do with wood.

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Re: Carving #1

Postby duckdozer » Fri Mar 30, 2012 7:16 am

Don you decoys are just amazing!!!
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Re: Carving #1

Postby cyoung24 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 2:39 pm

Sick!!!
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Re: Carving #1

Postby woodduck31 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 5:03 pm

thanks guys, I'm an old Kansas boy myself, having grown up in Emporia.

I just don't want anyone to get discouraged about making their own decoys or believe a lot of the misconceptions about foam decoys.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby duckdozer » Fri Mar 30, 2012 8:19 pm

Too bad your allergies keep you away from here otherwise we would get to see some of those bad boys in person. After I buy my snow goose spread I will be investing in a sick, sick, sick diver set from BLD!!!
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Re: Carving #1

Postby woodduck31 » Fri Mar 30, 2012 9:29 pm

we lived in Kansas till our youngest son was 3, not counting a couple of years in Alaska and a few in Illinois. I was getting sicker every year with multiple asthma attacks the last several years. My doctor's solution was to move west and that's what we did.
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Re: Carving #1

Postby mudpack » Tue Apr 03, 2012 6:27 am

woodduck31 wrote: there are things you can do with foam decoys that you just can't do with wood.


While I would dispute that statement, I have to tell you the sandhills in the picture are gorgeous. :yes:
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Re: Carving #1

Postby woodduck31 » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:01 pm

I probably should have clarified that better. There are just some things, due to weight and balance you just can't do with a wood decoy. Decoys like these are very difficult to make in wood and have them float right, the weight distribution is too high or too far out to the side.

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Re: Carving #1

Postby duckdozer » Tue Apr 03, 2012 8:21 pm

JEBUS Don!!!!! WOW!!! Those are friggin crazy I love those cans. WOW!!!
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