Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

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Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:38 pm

I spent some time today wire brushing, cleaning, and coating 3 dozen decoys. After reading a variety of threads in the decoy forum, I decided to use truck bed liner as a base coat. All the threads indicated it would bind to the plastic really well, and provide a good paintable base. While I was picking up the spray can truck bed liner a few days ago, I noticed that there was a plasticized vehicle undercoating right next to it from the same manufacturer. After reading the labels I could only see two different components in the bed liner. One is a color pigment, the other is a drying agent. The undercoating cost $3.49 a can, the bed liner cost $7.49 a can.

After spraying the two different materials on the decoys today, I can tell you that the bed liner is easier to spray a thin coating with, it sprays on black, and drys in less than an hour. The undercoating sprays on a bit thicker, and takes several hours to dry, and a full day to cure. I painted a couple decoys two days ago as a test run. The two materials are pretty much identical otherwise. They dry the same color. Have the same texture, and I am guessing will be equally tough during field use. Despite being twice the price I still like the bed liner better for the quick drying factor.

The first picture shows the decoys I coated today. the right side were done with the bedliner and are fully dry. The left side were coated with the undercoating and still have a sheen since they are wet. The pintail decoys on the left will be turned into longtailed duck decoys. The far right are canvasbacks, and the middle ones will be a mix of bluebills and Barrows Golden Eyes.

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This shot gives a closer look at some of the decoys that are dry. These 6 will be BGE's.

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A recent purchase of 42 decoys for $40 netted me 12 canvasback decoys. Their paint jobs will get started tomorrow if the weather holds. Trica, Morgan, and I are planning to do some skeet shooting in the morning so the paint job will have to wait until tomorrow afternoon.

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Here is a picture of the two products.

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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby MassDecoyCarver » Mon Jun 04, 2012 5:26 am

That's an interesting approach to a common problem in repainting old plastics. What paint will you use to add the colors ?

I would like to see pictures of the completed decoys and also a follow up at the end of next season to see how they have held up under use.
I used the same undercoating on my son's pickup truck early this spring, and I think it has held up pretty good so far.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby dakotashooter2 » Mon Jun 04, 2012 2:13 pm

I always enjoy when I see someone rehabing decoy. It's getting to the point where most guys would just as soon buy new ones as deal with the old ones. It's too bad because working on them yourself really makes you appreciate them.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Tue Jun 05, 2012 3:25 pm

The work is going well on these. I can say that I like the bedliner a lot better. It dries in an hour. The undercoat takes a few days to totally dry. I plan to buy rustoleum flat white primer in a can for the white on the divers. Head and bill colors may be acrylic since it comes in a lot more colors. I tried to roll / peel off the bedliner by hand and couldn't get it to come off. It bonded really well with the plastic.

With bedliner and paint I will be right at $2.25 per decoy. I refuse to pay $10 to $20 a decoy when I will have to paint them after the first season. These decoys should only need touch up every few seasons instead of total repaint work.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Tue Jun 05, 2012 11:18 pm

I coated another 35 decoys tonight after work. I used two cans of the bed liner to coat them all. I gave them two hours laying in the sun to dry while Tricia and I shot skeet at the lake. I learned that you want to let them cure over night. While they felt dry to the touch the finish rubbed off in spots when I started putting them in the bag. So back on the driveway to cure overnight they went.

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If you look close you can see there are a bunch of hot buy decoys in the mix. The hot buys are all going to blue bill decoys. The three small decoys in the shadows will be buffle head decoys. I plan to touch up the rubbed spots on these and coat another 3 dozen decoys tomorrow. That should have all my diver decoys coated with bed liner. Time to buy some paint.


I have a dozen decoys with pellet holes or dog chew spots that leak, and I just happen to have a can of spray foam in the house. I am thinking I will drill a fairly large hole in the back of these decoys and fill them starting at the front and pulling the tube nozzle slowly backward as the decoy fills. Once the foam sets I will remove any excess from the hole area, and silicon over the hole to seal it.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Mon Jun 11, 2012 9:57 am

Some plans changed for this weekend. My wife and daughters unceremoniously dropped me like a hot potato to run north for birthday parties, sleep overs, and a ladies night out on the town. This left me with a unusually large amount of free time on my hands. A quick trip to the store to pick up some paint and the diver paint jobs could begin.

Here is where I am at after an evening and most of today working on decoys. There are five mostly finished Scaup on the left side. 12 partially finished Canvasbacks with 8 drakes and 4 hens in the works. 5 completed Barrows GE's and 3 completed Buffleheads. I am pretty happy with the color of blue I have on the bills, I need to darken them a bit to match a live duck still. I am debating if I should put permanent marker on a plastic glove tip and feather that onto the paint, or try something else. I still need to blacken the pedicle on each decoy.

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The second pictures shows 39 Scaup with the bills and eyes painted. I haven't added pupils to any of them since I am not really sure they are needed.

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After completing as much work as I could, the ladies came home and free time was over. I did manage to slip in a long walk / scouting session with Bella at a local wildlife area. I found several good spots that are a long enough hike to keep most hunters out, and found three new spots where I need to head in and bow hunt for Blacktail during this years early season.

All in all it was a very good day.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Slack Tide » Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:11 am

My friend an I have been doing that for years, rehabing like that.
AND,
If you really don't neeeeeed those many decoys, I am sure you have a local waterfowl festival in the area that you can sell them off by the dozen and then put the profits towards new, better deeks that you may need.

As for the bedliner, they look pretty shiney. Is that just the pic, or are they? I have had great luck with "high-temp" paint on everything. No need for dull coat after it. Did you dull coat your deeks in the end?
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Wed Jun 13, 2012 12:17 pm

I haven't clear coated the decoys yet. I plan to put most of the Bluebills on a gang net. I don't plan to buy newer decoys. I get a lot of
personal satisfaction from hunting with things I made or
improved. Hunting over these decoys will
Enhance the hunting experience for me.
That is a good tip on selling them though.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby dakotashooter2 » Wed Jun 13, 2012 3:56 pm

I'm curious if you got around to spray foaming the inside of the decoys. I could not get spray foam to cure on some turkey decoys I filled. It actually expanded at first then shrunk again. And when I pushed the stake into the body a week later the foam started to ooze out.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Wed Jun 13, 2012 6:32 pm

I am waiting to foam the bad decoys until I get done painting the good ones. I will let you know how that works out.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Mr. spooky » Wed Jun 13, 2012 6:44 pm

ScaupHunter wrote:I haven't clear coated the decoys yet. I plan to put most of the Bluebills on a gang net. I don't plan to buy newer decoys. I get a lot of
personal satisfaction from hunting with things I made or
improved. Hunting over these decoys will
Enhance the hunting experience for me.
That is a good tip on selling them though.


I totaly agree with you on the satisfaction of hunting with things you make.. if you feel like they are too shiny as someone previousaly stated, clearcoat also comes in a dull finish :thumbsup:
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Sun Jun 17, 2012 6:42 pm

Here are a few Old Squaw decoys I am almost finished painting. The bills need the salmon color painted on them and then three coats of clear matte finish. I am pretty happy with how they turned out.

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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Erie » Wed Jun 20, 2012 5:36 pm

I thought you had a list/picture of the paints you used?
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby handyandy » Fri Jul 06, 2012 7:37 am

those look good I have some old flambaeu mallards I was planning on painting as divers I was debating on what to use for the paint since most don't bond to the plastic well but the bed liner is a good idea I will have to try. I like the work you did the paint jobs look good. How did you paint the bills and the different colors did you brush it on?
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Fri Jul 06, 2012 1:05 pm

The black is all bedliner. All the other colors I painted on by hand.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Indaswamp » Thu Aug 09, 2012 7:14 pm

does the bedliner stay on? is it durable? I have a bunch of old flambeau mallards that I and thinking of painting into redheads, but I am not gonna do it if the paint wears off easily. I want something that is like armour! I wish I could get some of that old lead paint-that stuff was the BOMB on plastic deeks!!!
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby JuniorPre 360 » Thu Aug 09, 2012 8:50 pm

Indaswamp wrote:does the bedliner stay on? is it durable? I have a bunch of old flambeau mallards that I and thinking of painting into redheads, but I am not gonna do it if the paint wears off easily. I want something that is like armour! I wish I could get some of that old lead paint-that stuff was the BOMB on plastic deeks!!!

I have had great results doing the following:
Sand down paint and rough up surface (don't sand all the way through the decoy)
Wash off decoy
Spray bed liner and let dry for a day
Apply acrylic paints (I used sponge brushes)
Let dry for another day
Apply 3 light coats of Krylon 1311 clear coat over 12 hours.

I used the spray paint rustoleum rust colored primer for redheads' heads and burnt sienna for cans' heads.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Indaswamp » Thu Aug 09, 2012 9:03 pm

JuniorPre 360 wrote:
Indaswamp wrote:does the bedliner stay on? is it durable? I have a bunch of old flambeau mallards that I and thinking of painting into redheads, but I am not gonna do it if the paint wears off easily. I want something that is like armour! I wish I could get some of that old lead paint-that stuff was the BOMB on plastic deeks!!!

I have had great results doing the following:
Sand down paint and rough up surface (don't sand all the way through the decoy)
Wash off decoy
Spray bed liner and let dry for a day
Apply acrylic paints (I used sponge brushes)
Let dry for another day
Apply 3 light coats of Krylon 1311 clear coat over 12 hours.

I used the spray paint rustoleum rust colored primer for redheads' heads and burnt sienna for cans' heads.

I'm not gonna spray with 3 coats of Krylon...if I need Krylon, the paint does not stick good enough. I use to use nothing but lead paint to repaint decoys. It was the paint we had at my cousins camp. After that got used up, I tried just about every kind of paint there is and I quit repainting decoys because everything else SUCKS compared to the old lead paint. The only paint that even comes close to the toughness of the old lead paint is duralux marine paint at $50 bucks a gallon.
I am not gonna paint decoys only to have them look like pounded dog crap in 3 years. If I'm doing it-the paint better last a long time.

Anyone know where to find the old lead paint for sale?????
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby JuniorPre 360 » Fri Aug 10, 2012 8:50 am

Image
My acrylics with the krylon 1311 have very durable paint. It sticks to the bed liner great. Hope you find your method. Repainting deeks saved me a ton of money and added 3 dozen to my flock.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby k.lewis » Wed May 01, 2013 8:01 pm

JuniorPre 360, what/where did you get the acrylic paint you used?
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby JuniorPre 360 » Thu May 02, 2013 8:40 am

k.lewis wrote:JuniorPre 360, what/where did you get the acrylic paint you used?

Wal-Mart $.97 in the craft section. From my experience, it's been a lot stronger than the rustoleum paint in the small cans.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Cougar125 » Fri May 17, 2013 7:11 am

Not to ressurect a dead thread, but I have a question. Instead of using a wire brush or steel wool or something, would a soda blaster (sand blaster using baking soda instead of sand) work well with getting the dekes ready for bedliner? I'm just thinking that the prep work would go better and you might have a more uniform base for the bedliner to stick to.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby JuniorPre 360 » Mon May 20, 2013 1:02 pm

I use a machine sander. As long as it digs up the decoy and doesn't blow holes through it due to too much power, I'm sure you'd be ok.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby ScaupHunter » Tue May 21, 2013 9:12 am

Serious blast from the past. We shot hundreds of birds over those decoys last season.

I would use the soda blaster and only blast the off the loose paint on the decoy.
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Re: Rehabing Old Duck Decoys

Postby Vikinghunter » Sun Jun 02, 2013 12:52 pm

[url][URL=http://s157.photobucket.com/user/Viking_hunter/media/22e38ff9844a_84b3cf41-8553-4871-96a6-014f0868a893.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url][url][URL=http://s157.photobucket.com/user/Viking_hunter/media/cc8d1a258ad5_2236fd0c-4bf5-4fbf-b853-76fc437fa1ae.jpg.html]Image[/url][/url]
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