need help with the cluck

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need help with the cluck

Postby 2point » Sat May 26, 2012 5:42 pm

I am on here to vent a little. I have been trying to learn to blow a short reed for quite a while and I really suck. I have two acrylic calls one shorter and one longer. I don’t want to mention brands and models because it is me not the calls; sound files of them are great.

I started with the holy grail of DVDs bad grammar, practiced just the basic cluck and never really got it. I always sound really flat and monotone (not goosey) So I moved to YouTube, some great guys on there tried what Trevor S did to for a cluck with a fffhhhittt with his tongue cutting it of real quick. I have watched him sit in that recliner a million times and just tear it up. I thought mine was sounding a little better so I recorded it but it was just monotone and flat.

Hell there is a young kid on there that sounded good says grrrrick for a cluck tried that recorded it, sounds flat and monotone. I have $2 hands but have put them every which way and have even tried what one guy on YouTube said and put my finger of off hand in the insert, thought it sounded better. Recorded it guess what flat and monotone.

I think I blow a little soft (the way I like to call ducks) so I tried more pressure didn’t help. I am a good goose hunter and kill a lot, my Achilles heel has always been calling, and wanted to get better before next season, any advice greatly appreciated. Thanks
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby goosehunter64 » Sat May 26, 2012 6:06 pm

PM Sent
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby noweil » Sun May 27, 2012 7:45 am

Have you ever thought about blowing a flute call? They dont seem to be very fashionable nowdays but they still kill geese and are easy to blow. You can go to Midway USA and buy a new Big River Long Honker for under $20.00. Easy to blow, sound good, and easy to tune (instructions are on the package).
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby shootable Goose » Wed May 30, 2012 1:23 pm

Sounds like you need some hand placement adjustment. That's where you will get different pitches and tones.
Start by wrapping your thumb and pointer finger around the very end of the call. You want to be as close to the end as you can. Then, take the other three fingers and put them down on your palm, creating a little channel through the call and out your hand.  You should be able to see through the channel. If its to tight it wont work. Then take your other hand and make a air tight cup around the side of your other hand, leaving the far side of the cup open. This will give it tone. Then, to change the pitch, simply slightly open and close the three fingers that you created the channel with.  I hope this helps.
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby Ryd3r » Sat Jun 02, 2012 1:26 pm

2point wrote:I am on here to vent a little. I have been trying to learn to blow a short reed for quite a while and I really suck. I have two acrylic calls one shorter and one longer. I don’t want to mention brands and models because it is me not the calls; sound files of them are great.

I started with the holy grail of DVDs bad grammar, practiced just the basic cluck and never really got it. I always sound really flat and monotone (not goosey) So I moved to YouTube, some great guys on there tried what Trevor S did to for a cluck with a fffhhhittt with his tongue cutting it of real quick. I have watched him sit in that recliner a million times and just tear it up. I thought mine was sounding a little better so I recorded it but it was just monotone and flat.

Hell there is a young kid on there that sounded good says grrrrick for a cluck tried that recorded it, sounds flat and monotone. I have $2 hands but have put them every which way and have even tried what one guy on YouTube said and put my finger of off hand in the insert, thought it sounded better. Recorded it guess what flat and monotone.

I think I blow a little soft (the way I like to call ducks) so I tried more pressure didn’t help. I am a good goose hunter and kill a lot, my Achilles heel has always been calling, and wanted to get better before next season, any advice greatly appreciated. Thanks



OK, so I will start off by saying you are on the right track. Everyone has their own way of doing everything. Do you know how to duck call? Have you ever tried a feeder? Everyone has some way of doing it and its all different. Calling is a very technical and personal aspect to hunting. Everyone gets their sounds from doing something different and really no two callers (even with the same call) sound the same. Which is OK for two reasons (1) No two geese sound the exact same and (2) Geese are too stupid to tell anyway.

Next, goose and duck calling while you apply similar techniques, are not the same. I am a pretty good goose caller. Always have been. I have been calling seriously for 6 months or so and within the last few months I have went from a terrible caller to a good caller. I have out passed my hunting buddies who have been calling for years. Heres the thing that I have found. Some people are just better at doing it than others. Period. I am a mediocre if I am even that close - duck caller, even though I have been calling ducks longer. I am just now getting the hang of a feeder and let me tell you it has been no easy street, and in reality I still sound like crap. :biggrin:

Bad Grammer has been so helpful to me. I know you said you watched it, but seriously watch everything, practice everything, seriously. Hand placements and all. I moved to North Dakota a few weeks ago and I had my goose call with me in the truck just so I could practice picking it up properly. In the end it all makes a difference. Dont move on to the next thing until you are 100% satisfied with the first. 2nd thing practice every day. Doesn’t have to be for long, 15 minutes a day goes a long way. Put it into your daily routine. I cant practice at home (except for my feeder duck call) because I live in a apartment, so I drive to the park. I get some looks but most people stop with me and talk to me about it. Bird watchers love calls, except when I tell them why I am learning to call. Practice your honks and your clucks and your murmurs, practice your tones and your hand placement and your mouth placement. Practice, practice practice!!!

DO YOU USE YOUR VOICE? I don’t. I cant. No matter how hard I try I cannot get the growl that I need to make the “goosey sound” some people can, and by doing so they can make a “flat” call sound like a mean old gander. I have no voice inflection whatsoever, and since I physically cannot, or I just haven’t figured it out yet. Either way I need a call that fits me. Your calls might be great call, but it might not fit you. Something to think about, and it might just take some time before you will be able to know that for yourself. Again with the “talking into the call” I struggled with this at first, as a matter of fact I posted a thread on here when I was learning. Here is what I found, it doesn’t have anything to do with the actually speaking into the call. Huge misconception. It’s the tongue motion when saying it. Ticaticatica – tip of your tongue on teeth then down and the back of your throat. To-wit is what I learned how to make a honk on my short reed. For a cluck I really just do the wit part, quick snap of your tongue to the back of your teeth.

Again everyone calls different. Bad grammar preaches using the tip of your tongue to control your call. This works for me. It doesn’t work for my partner. He has to use his throat and the back of his tounge. Figure out what works for you by….you guessed it: practicing.

How are your honks and murmurs, comebacks? Clucks could be just your glitch. I struggle with moans, which are pretty typically easy to master. Either way practice makes perfect, or at least better

Sorry for the long post, I don’t know if it helps or not, I just know when I was learning the more help and opinions the better.
"When you have shot one bird flying you have shot all birds flying. They are all different and they fly in different ways but the sensation is the same and the last one is as good as the first." - Ernest Hemmingway
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby tripleb » Mon Jun 04, 2012 6:36 am

Ryd3r wrote:
2point wrote:I

DO YOU USE YOUR VOICE? I don’t. I cant. No matter how hard I try I cannot get the growl that I need to make the “goosey sound” some people can, and by doing so they can make a “flat” call sound like a mean old gander. I have no voice inflection whatsoever, and since I physically cannot, or I just haven’t figured it out yet.


I found it difficult, at first, to add "voice" to a goose call. However, it's sort of like rubbing your belly with your right hand and patting your head with your left ..... at the same time. If you practice you can do it and it can become a natural act on your part. The way I started was to grunt into the call, while making a cluck, sort of like some people do with a duck call. When I could do that easily, I toned the grunt down to a hum when making the cluck. Your throat and nasal passages may get a little irritated at first .... mine did, but that fades with time and use. If you keep practicing, the hum will be a natural part of your calling. Now, I have to consciously decide not to hum when running the call if I don't want a gravelly sound from the call.

In retrospect, to learn to add voice, I'd try doing moans with the hum. Once you have that down, it may be easier to do the same with the cluck and the other notes.
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby fsulaxer » Mon Jun 04, 2012 9:06 pm

Ok ill add my 2 cents into this. You will not be Trevor Shannahan. I hunt with him from time to time over the last few years and we are pretty good friends. Anyway dude is sick there is a reason he is ranked where he is.

Do not give up on the short reed. IDK what kind of call you have and don't take this as a sales pitch but check out the calling geese the strait meat way. Its a good video and can help you out some. Your gonna have to learn to use some grunts in there to make a variation in the tone. make sure you can get the proper back pressure. Its really hard to type how to blow a call but go to some shows, cabelas bass pro or something, there will be tons of call companies there and any staffer worth 2 cents will take you aside and give you a quick how to lesson on blowing it. don't try and do too much to soon get the basics down, thats what i tell all the guys who hunt with me. Don't try and do what i do when hunting just start simple. work your way up cause if not it will become frustrating. PM me if you got any other questions maybe i can send you some sound files or videos of how we do it in MD
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Re: need help with the cluck

Postby Ryd3r » Tue Jun 05, 2012 7:07 pm

tripleb wrote:
Ryd3r wrote:
2point wrote:I

DO YOU USE YOUR VOICE? I don’t. I cant. No matter how hard I try I cannot get the growl that I need to make the “goosey sound” some people can, and by doing so they can make a “flat” call sound like a mean old gander. I have no voice inflection whatsoever, and since I physically cannot, or I just haven’t figured it out yet.


I found it difficult, at first, to add "voice" to a goose call. However, it's sort of like rubbing your belly with your right hand and patting your head with your left ..... at the same time. If you practice you can do it and it can become a natural act on your part. The way I started was to grunt into the call, while making a cluck, sort of like some people do with a duck call. When I could do that easily, I toned the grunt down to a hum when making the cluck. Your throat and nasal passages may get a little irritated at first .... mine did, but that fades with time and use. If you keep practicing, the hum will be a natural part of your calling. Now, I have to consciously decide not to hum when running the call if I don't want a gravelly sound from the call.

In retrospect, to learn to add voice, I'd try doing moans with the hum. Once you have that down, it may be easier to do the same with the cluck and the other notes.


For sure. Practice is key. But I think people attribute a little heavy onto what to say into the call (toowit, tica, gudda, etc...), its way more complicated than that. A grunt/hum is way better representation of what voice inflection is: IMO. Its not speaking into the calls persay, its using your voice to manipulate the call, just like you use your tongue to manipulate the air or your hands etc...
"When you have shot one bird flying you have shot all birds flying. They are all different and they fly in different ways but the sensation is the same and the last one is as good as the first." - Ernest Hemmingway
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