floating barrel blind???

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floating barrel blind???

Postby Hilltopflyway » Thu Jul 11, 2013 7:41 am

We are getting 12, 55 gallon metal barrels to build two more floating blinds. I have never built a floating blind from barrels. I believe we will go with six barrels per blind. Any recommendations on the proper techniques for stability or lay out of barrels? Or the proper way to attach them to the blind. I was thinking medal banding, but I could use suggestions.
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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby LanceM » Fri Jul 12, 2013 8:28 pm

Never done it, but I've considered it a few times. I do have a few suggestions. One barrel will provide about 460 lbs of buoyancy if submerged. Half that if you want it to float half out of the water. If you want more calculations than that, it will provide the buoyancy of the weight of water it displaces. Water weighs 8.34 lbs/gal. Secondly, I wanted my blind to be able to move up/down depending on water conditions. You could anchor it, but then you'll have to deal with it shifting around if it has enough slack to move vertically. I planned on putting posts into the ground, then sliding a piece of PVC over it and attaching the PVC to the blind. It holds it stable horizontally, but lets it float higher or lower depending on the water conditions. Also keep in mind that your blind will be pretty top heavy if your barrels are full of air, so don't make it too narrow or you could flip it.

Post some pics if you make one. I'd like to see one in action.
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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby TKEEKU » Wed Jul 17, 2013 6:49 pm

I like LanceM's calculations! I think the PVC slides are a great idea unless you have pretty good cold weather and or you have good current. I have thought about doing that same thing here on the Susquehanna River but the water level may rise about ten feet with a large amount of rain, and floods even higher. I have used PVC with some success in the cold but it does not hold up well if you need to put too much stress on it. My thoughts were to use long tie down ropes for the main anchoring of the blind, with shorter ties to be used on a daily basis that could be adjusted to the water level that day. Send some pics as you make this thing.
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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby tenfingergrip » Thu Jul 18, 2013 2:57 pm

For what it's worth, here is a crude sketch out of my files of a platform I constructed several years ago out of 6 barrels. If you can see by the drawing, the barrels are held in place on the 4 sides by 2x6 treated boards that are positioned and cut to the length so as to remain approx 6" below the centerline of the barrels. Those bottom support 2x6's were joined to the top with treated 2x4's. The deck (treated 1/2" plywood) rested on the tops of the barrels as well as the floor joists (also 2x4's) which are attached to the end joists that form the perimeter around the tops of the barrels. The end joists are positioned and cut to assure they line up to make sure the plywood deck lays exactly on the joists as well as the tops of the barrels. the deck is then screwed down on the joists. I built the sections on land, took the barrels, two sections, the joining 2x4's, decking to the water and put everything together there. I floated the bottom section, put the barrels into the bottom, put on the top section, had two buddies lift each side, one at a time and screwed the supports to the top section. Put on the plywood decking and screwed down the decking to the joists. If you have some strong buddies or are able to use a lauching trailer, you could build the whole thing on land or do as I did but have the decking already on the top section.

The bottom section, being below the centerline of the barrels keep the barrels from skewing and/or floating away and is the way of binding them together without bands, etc.

Don't know if this was what you were inquiring about or whether you already have your plans designed, but this worked. Many other ways to do this. The other things, such as achoring, making it steady with floating dock type driven poles with rings or pipes for fluctuating water levels, etc are all pretty easy to install.

Good luck. Let's see some pictures when you get it built or in progress.

Good luck.

(Tried to post sketch but can't seem to get it to attach)
Barrel platform sketch (750x1024).jpg
Last edited by tenfingergrip on Tue Jul 30, 2013 8:50 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby Cypress_Bend » Wed Jul 24, 2013 7:46 am

BE VERY CAREFULL. thats all i am gonna say, was almost in a barrel blind that flipped one morning, to much weight on the front shooting rail almost tipped her over. wider and shorter is better for the blind size. and I would defenitaly go with more barrels. think how much all the lumber and material weighs and how much each man+ gear weighs.
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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby jbjb5273 » Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:36 am

Cypress_Bend wrote:BE VERY CAREFULL. thats all i am gonna say, was almost in a barrel blind that flipped one morning, to much weight on the front shooting rail almost tipped her over. wider and shorter is better for the blind size. and I would defenitaly go with more barrels. think how much all the lumber and material weighs and how much each man+ gear weighs.


Did they have the blind staked in with spud poles?
Better Take um....... One more pass.......
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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby jaysweet3 » Tue Jul 30, 2013 7:27 am

You don't need to use barrels. We have floating blinds that are over 20 years old, built out of marine grade plywood, 2x12s and foam insulation. They float great, very stable. The white Styrofoam works fine, but the muskrats like to make nests in it. The pink is more expensive, but they don't like it as much. Image

This is an old blind. We had to pull it after 20 years in the water, to do some repairs on the floor, and put a new coat of paint on. But it was still in pretty good shape. The base is just a box made from plywood on the top and bottom, 2x12 for the box, filled with foam. Very stable, not much rocking. On the base we use brackets to hold the blind in place, with 2x4s. The 2x4 slides through the bracket, so it can float with changing water levels.

Image

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Re: floating barrel blind???

Postby jaysweet3 » Tue Jul 30, 2013 7:43 am

Using pipe to hold a blind in place is not the best idea. Metal pipe can be hard on outboard motors. If you get ice, it will move the blind, and bend the pipe. 2x4s break and are easily replaced.
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