HOOK’s BOX BLIND PLAN ©2003 ~ by Thomas Hooker
I’ve never had the opportunity to hunt my own property until recently. So now that I have some land what should I do with it? Well there two aspects to hunting that I’ve never had the opportunity to experience: One, hunting out of a box blind, and two, hunting around food plots. This is about to change. So now I invite you to share in my learning experience as we dive into a new arena.
Build it, and they will come. Well that may be true in baseball, but not necessarily in deer hunting. Then again that depends on exactly what you’re building, and mostly where you’re putting it. In the first of a two part series were going to build a box blind and put it where we want it. In the second part we’re going to then build a food plot. Together these two combined elements should make for some interesting hunting, and I can’t wait to get started.
I have spent my entire hunting career perched twenty feet above the ground in climbing tree stands, sitting on the ground, or still hunting. However, now that I have the availability I plan to change some habits. Oh don’t get the wrong idea. I’m perfectly happy in an elevated stand, but I have to admit it would be nice to hunt in comfort for once. After all, I am getting up in years, but mostly I decided to go this route to afford my two sons, Tommy and Michael the opportunity to enjoy some of the best hunting opportunities available during the coldest months of the year. I’ve known of several kids who have given up the idea of hunting simply because they’d rather sit in the comfort of their own home and watch movies and sip hot chocolate rather than find frost bite on their extremities just to get a shot at a whitetail. So I figure I can give them the edge long enough to get them hooked a little deeper on the sport. A box blind gives all three of us the opportunity to comfortably hunt together in one spot. There’s nothing like family unity. Heck we might even get mom in there a few days too!
I decided to do this out of necessity. You see in my quest to locate plans I became very disgruntled when I came to realize that I could only get a hold of box building plans if I sent someone a set of numbers off of a plastic card I keep in my wallet. I could not believe that in this world of internet search engine available information that I could not find some free and easy plans to work with. “Someone call Al Gore and tell him his information superhighway has a fatal flaw in it!” So there you have it. Now let’s get started.
I have a general contractors license and have building homes for years so slapping together a 4’ x 8’ box blind will be a snap. I just hope I can put it into laymen’s terms for you in-experienced people. What you don’t believe me? Ok, well I’m lying. When it comes to building I am somewhat inept, but I did stay in a Holiday Inn Express last night! Anyway my experience stems from, “Once I built a dog house.” Well a box blind is just a big dog house right? So people if I can do it so can you.
I’m not going to give you every little detail about this plan because I figure you won’t make mistakes like the average moron, like me for example. I shouldn’t need to tell you that a 2 x 4 does not really measure 2” by 4”. It measures 1.5 inches by 3.5 inches. Yes, in essence you’re getting ripped off ok! Tell the clerk at Home Depot how you feel, and that you should get a one inch discount on each 2 x 4. Anyway, please remember in this process, DON’T TAKE ANYTHING FOR GRANTED. When in doubt, measure, and then measure again. This process is most important because unless you’re building on site, things in your near future can end up being quite difficult. This plan is designed to be constructed at a convenient location, transported to a remote location, and then completed on-site. If your measurements are slightly or grossly off, there’s not much you can do about it when you’re out in the middle of no where with no electricity. So getting it right the first time will be very beneficial, unless you actually need a good burn pile on your property.
Let’s start off with a small shopping list. Below there is a list of needed tools and materials. Remember that I’m not a pro, and nothing is written in stone. Please feel free to make any changes you see fit. This is simply a guideline. You will also notice the approximate cost. That is what it cost me. Your cost may very according to where you shop, current prices, and how many extras you may wish to add. eg: Insulation and finished inside walls and such.
2 x 4 x 8 = 25 ~ (2 are pressure treated)
Wall Panels 4x 8 Plywood = 7
Floor 4x8 x3/4” = 1
Elevators 4x4x8 = 2
Door frame 2x2x8 = 2
4” Door Hinges = 2
Door Latch = 1
Pad Lock = 1
Nail/Screw 2” = 1 Large Box
Small box 1” flat head nails = 1
Tin Roofing sheets= 4
Tin Roofing nails = 1 box
Painters Caulk = 2-3 tubes
Plexi-glass cut 17”X11 3/4” = 2
Window knob components = 2
½” wood moulding = 10 ft
4x 10 strip of outdoor carpet
Carpet Padding optional
Paint: Your Option
Approximate Cost = $300.00
Skill Saw (Plywood blade best)
Heavy Duty Staple Gun w/staples
Estimated Time To Build
Depends on experience level
I have none so it took me about
13 hours to construct, and about
2 hours to complete on-site
In illustration 2 you will see the front frame looking from the inside out. (The brown 2 x 4’s indicate the side frame location.) The tricky part here is the windows. There should be a small overlap of plywood at the top and bottom past the inside frame. This will allow the plexi-glass inserts to set securely in place. Place a strip of ½ inch “L” shaped moulding across the top under the 2 x 4 frame. (indicated by dark black line). This acts as a window slide guide. ( Place this with one side facing the window and the top against the frame with enough space for sliding window.) There is also a “Sideways” placed section of 2 x 4 across the bottom. This also acts as a guide, but also doubles as a gun rest. I placed carpet on these for obvious reasons. Again, these should be put in place with just enough space for easy operation of a sliding window. Another strip of moulding or small piece of wood should be placed at the window end toward the middle of the blind. This is a window stop, used to “stop” the window from moving any further forward. You will notice the below photo that I carpeted the inside. This is not necessary, but it provides insulation around a closed window, and allows for smooth and quiet opening and closing.
Placement of windows is to your preference. I put mine at the preferred height to fit my best field of vision from sitting in a specific chair I have chosen to sit in. Yours may vary. Some people opt for longer windows with no cover, but I feel the bigger the windows the more chance you have of deer picking up movement from within. I also believe that if you’re going to the trouble to build a blind for comfort, covered windows are a no-brainer. Some people opt for windows on the side as well, but this will depend largely where you will place your blind. My location happens to be inside a thick cedar tree line where there is no need for side windows. If you go with sliding windows save some trouble and remember to put in the plastic before you finish installing the guides or you’ll end up pulling nails to put your window in. I tell you these things largely because it’s the little things that we tend to overlook that get us in trouble. So take time to think before you do. For knobs on the window I chose what would best fit and I’ll leave that to your discretion. However, make sure that you use a short screw, or provide enough blots or washers to securely anchor the knob through the plastic because the wall is rather thin. You need to install these before you put the windows in place. Tip: When mounting your hardware it is important to remember that drilling plexi-glass, no matter how small the bit, will cause it to crack or shatter. To avoid this put your drill on REVERSE. This will in essence “Melt” a hole in the plastic and avoid damage to the plastic. When you attach the knobs be careful not to apply too much pressure on tightening as you may also cause damage here. Tip: Your plastic will come wrapped with a thin layer of protective film. After installation of the windows put the film back on to protect the windows until you are finished putting the blind together.
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