Is the new gear really worth it?

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Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby hurtin_honkers » Wed Feb 05, 2014 8:20 am

This idea came to mind while looking at some turkey gear online, and made me think of waterfowl too. For turkeys I use the cheapest (maybe ugliest) foam decoy you can find. I have a featherflex decoy and a couple I snagged at Wally World for 10$ a piece last year, can't beat it. And looking online these decoys are amazing! Fine details on ever feather, and the whole nine yards. But they run a costly penny too. Now I know a lot of you will say you get what you pay for, but I mean has anyone ever looked at the l.l.bean brand cork decoys? They are amazing pieces or artwork but they do look a bit different than a duck. Do we really need to drop a pretty penny on these items or can it be compensated with skill? Just my thought for the morning.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby rerun » Thu Feb 06, 2014 9:18 am

I'll chime in here...my uncle (his age is mid 70's), still hunts with this old beat up cork black duck decoys (10 I think with one connected to a string for motion & I have no idea how old), doesn't own a single piece of camo clothing (only wears brown & olive drab), shoots an old Browning Auto (pre-camo), doesn't have a single piece of camo netting/mesh/burlap and only shoots 2 3/4 steel, calls very well......and is still a very successful duck hunter (granted he doesn't get out as much as he used to).
"A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone." Henry David Thoreau
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby papageno » Thu Feb 06, 2014 9:47 am

I have found over many years and many heavily hunted areas that cork has a great advantage over plastic - there is no glare. Gun wary birds circle deeks and, I believe strongly, recognize plastic decoys. I have never used the llbean corkers, but I do swear by corkers for late season. Mine are very lifelike. That and a very subtle, low pitched call.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby papageno » Thu Feb 06, 2014 4:05 pm

A more direct answer to your fundamental question is… Nothing compensates for scouting and putting yourself in the right place at the right time. East coast hunting is mainly about being where the birds want to be and not scaring them away. Goretex and fleece is the best improvement in the last 35 years. If you really want to spend money on something, Tungsten Matrix (2 3/4inch will do) is better than lead ever was.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby 682x » Fri Feb 07, 2014 6:41 am

Well I'll say half way through season I bought 200 rounds of cheap stuff and so did my partners and it all worked fine. Never owned a camo gun . Learned to blend in . I too have worn a plane olive shooting jacket or recently a solid black one . Just looks like another shadow. And I look good :grooving:
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby R-Factor » Fri Feb 07, 2014 9:33 am

Loaded question for sure. I think a lot of us could certainly agree that it's easy to overspend for this or that, but only you can decide if item A or item B is truly "worth" it. As a general rule, I would say that a lot of "stuff" that supposedly fools ducks/geese better is sometimes worth thinking twice about. "Stuff" that makes you more comfortable in the field- or items that assist in carrying/transport- is often a big help with little room for regret with me. I could have the best decoys on the planet, but if I'm cold- or my back hurts from an uncomfortable position...my success will suffer.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby 682x » Fri Feb 07, 2014 12:43 pm

I would say dependable transportation on the water. As # 1 importance for me and all mine are junk!! Also a fat larger duck hunting buddy you can make as a pack mule and another buddy with cat like reflexes and balance to pull off a shot nobody else was ready for!
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby R-Factor » Fri Feb 07, 2014 2:47 pm

682x wrote:and another buddy with cat like reflexes and balance to pull off a shot nobody else was ready for!

Funny you say that. My main hunting partner is pushing 70 and your description matches him to a tee. When the chips are down and that last duck is pushing hard at an odd angle, he's right in his element. :hammer: If we grew up together and he was about my same age, I think I'd probably have an inferiority complex by now! :lol3: However,through the years I've gotten so I just laugh and shake my head at some of the ridiculous shots the old goosing machine pulls off...it really is nuts.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby papageno » Fri Feb 07, 2014 7:09 pm

R-Factor wrote: I could have the best decoys on the planet, but if I'm cold- or my back hurts from an uncomfortable position...my success will suffer.


It's that plus. I'm sure you remember wearing so many layers that you looked like the Micheline Man. It was a real challenge just to get your gun up and swing correctly. I used to spend all day sweat soaked from the predawn setup - the cotton would never dry out.

682x wrote:Well I'll say half way through season I bought 200 rounds of cheap stuff and so did my partners and it all worked fine. :grooving:


I didn't say there was anything wrong with modern steel loads. I'm too cheap to shoot Tungsten Matrix now, but when it first came out it was a third the current price and steel absolutely sucked. That stuff is so lethal at long ranges and spreads out so wide at short in an IC that it's almost makes shooting too easy - almost.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby Rise and Shine Retrievers » Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:19 am

CLOTHING
Remembering the days that my pajamas were my long johns and we put our feet in plastic bread bags before pulling on our uninsulated boots... I'll take my thinsulate clothing and 1600 gram waders any day.

GEAR
As others have said. There's no substitute for being where the birds want to be a sitting still, wether you get their walking or in a $15,000 duck boat.
A Lab you train, a Chessie you negotiate with.
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby waterfowlah » Mon Feb 10, 2014 8:41 am

IMO Nothing floats like a Cork decoy,
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby Seaductor » Wed Feb 12, 2014 10:45 am

682x wrote:Also a fat larger duck hunting buddy you can make as a pack mule and another buddy with cat like reflexes and balance to pull off a shot nobody else was ready for!


I prefer younger, stronger, speedier, guys who take pity on an old man and only shoot marginally well!! ( Band Hogging is a NO NO!! You should always relinquish any band in question to the old guy as long as he legitimately fired a shot within 10 seconds of the bird being hit )
When you get to be my age, it's always a race to see if you'll piss inside or outside of your waders!!
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby 682x » Mon Feb 17, 2014 7:12 pm

Band Hog= RedDog !! He's starting to pile them up!
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Re: Is the new gear really worth it?

Postby Smokum870 » Sat Apr 05, 2014 4:42 pm

I see how it is Brad! That's why u always tell me to go get Ur bands huh!?
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