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Old 02-28-2005, 22:18   #1
nyredneck
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Ameristep Portable blinds

Anyone use portable blinds when they hunt? I just got an Ameristep Outhouse Blind for my b-day (present was 1 month late!) and gotta say, I can't wait to try it out on spring turkey! I set it up in My living room (much to my Wife's chagrin! ) and grabbed my bow, it is a little tight, but I can draw and swing (limitedly) and want to take my first long beard with a bow! Just wondering how they work out for anyone that has used them. Thanks!
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Old 03-01-2005, 06:51   #2
buckfever34
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Me and one of my hunting buddies have two of their models...both work great. Kinda tricky to learn how to fold up but other than that can't beat 'em.

We use them all the time for deer, turkey, predator, etc...

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Old 03-01-2005, 08:44   #3
noway
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I have an outhouse also, great on a NON-windy day but can be a mess if the winds are 25miles or higher. The metal stakes don't don't any justice in our loose sand and I found it better to tie it off to permanent vegetation.
They also work okay for shotguns and rifles but can be a bear for a traditional bow, most shorter compounds can be okay.

One dis-advantage with this blind is limited visibility and unless the games is coming right out in front of you, it can be tight to reshift into a better spot to get the right aim.
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Old 03-01-2005, 12:21   #4
BlackBelt
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Yeah, I got one of the Ameristep Outhouse Blinds this year and love it. I bought some Sneaky Leaf pin on camoflauge leaves at BassPro Shops and pinned them to the outside to break up the outling a bit, and it seemed to work.
This past deer season I had 3 deer walk up to within 20 feet of the blind before they realized something wasn't right and flagged up and took off. I learned to hide the blind in a thicket or similar vegetation to make it less obvious.
Also, I was using it in a pine thicket this past muzzleloader deer season (because it was raining and I hate getting my muzzleloader wet!), and I had 7 turkeys walk right by me. I was able to photograph them. For some reason, they weren't as spooked as the deer about the blind being there. Gave me some food for thought about the upcoming turkey season.
Only problem I see during turkey season is that I 'run and gun' for turkey, and it would be a pain to set it up, tear it down over and over.
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Old 03-02-2005, 10:54   #5
rfb45colt
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I've had an "outhouse" blind for about 6 years now... but I don't use it for bowhunting, it's too tight. For gun hunting, I love it. I've had numereous deer come within yards. It gets VERY cold here during deer gun season, and I use it in conjunction with my tree stand. I set it up very near my tree stand (I, too, set it up within some brush or small pines) and I have a Mr Buddy heater inside. I stay in my tree stand as long as I can endure the cold... then climb down and go in the blind to warm up (it's better than walking 1/2 mile or so back to my truck and "stirring up" the woods). If it's raining or snowing hard, I just stay in the blind until it stops.

I also have a differant pop-up ground blind that I use for duck & goose hunting. It's made by "Hunters View", and called the "Waterfowlers' Wigwam". The roof opens up, for shooting up at birds. It can also be used as a blind for deer/turkey, etc... but the camo pattern is designed to blend better in typical waterfowl situations (tall marsh grass & cattails). I got it from Sportsman Guide, for only $50, and it's much bigger than the "outhouse", and would be OK for bowhunting if the camo was differant.

For both blinds, I use a 6 gallon bucket with a swivel seat on the top. When deer hunting with the outhouse, I can (very silently) turn 360 degrees for a shot in any direction.

A word of caution about these blinds. I've had deer come very close... and a lot of other hunters too! They work so well, that they can be dangerous if you don't take extra precautions, especially when on heavily hunted public land. They make a blaze camo "cap" that you can put on the peak of the blind, so other hunters can see you (I've used one for several years, and it does NOT spook deer... turkey might be differant). If you use one of these blinds on any land where there's the slightest possibility of other hunters being nearby (even if they're trespassing on private land) I STRONGLY suggest you put some blaze orange on the outside of your blind during any firearm season. Better safe than becoming a hunting accident.

Edit: Also, a word about the ground stakes. The ones that come with the blind are too short and bend too easy for where I hunt. The ground here is very sandy, and during firearm deer season, in most years there's already a couple of inches of frost in the ground. I went to my local Ace Hardware, and bought some 1/4" diameter rods of "music spring steel". It comes in 3' lengths, and I made stakes that are 10" long... plus a couple inches for the bend at the top, will give you 3 stakes per rod. You have to cut it by grinding it, and you must heat it with a torch to form the bend at the top, but they work much better than the standard stakes. Another tip, the spring steel will rust (no big deal) but if you drop one in the woods, it's hard to find. So I put a small wrap of blaze orange tape around the top end of each one. Haven't lost one since.
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Old 03-02-2005, 11:28   #6
noway
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tip; I've been buying the plastic stakes from homedept or walmart camping section. Much easier and lighter than fabricating a new stake. They also aren't as noise when carrying the outhouse in the bag with the stakes bouncing around. If you loose one, no bigger deal, they are cheap. The also hold much better than what comes with the kit.

I also agreed, that if you have the blind on the edge of heavy vegation, hunters will almost walk right by you. Now is it is sitting right in the open, I doubt they would miss it ;f
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Old 03-02-2005, 22:15   #7
nyredneck
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Thanks for the advice everyone! I can't wait to set it up in the woods! Ameristep has a web site and they sell all kinds of goodies for thier blinds. There's a Snow camo cover you can slip over the outside of the outhouse, I think I might be picking that up! As a side note, when I showed My Mom the package that said "Outhouse Blind" She thought it was a real Outhouse and looked at Me and said "What on earth do you need that for!!" Had my Father and Me rolling on the floor!;f ;f
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Old 03-03-2005, 09:14   #8
BlackBelt
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One other side note...I used the Ameristep Outhouse this past season, until I found a blind called "BuckStumper" from GH Decoys out of OK.
Nothing, and I mean NOTHING has seen me sitting in that tree stump. It's a 4 panel blind that you set up in a minute that looks like a big ol' tree stump. Put some brush around it, and you are invisible. Put some brush or Sneaky Leaf's in your hat, and just look like vegitation growing out of a tree stump. Downside is that there is no roof on the blind and it's a bit pricey at $180.
I can't wait to use it during turkey season!
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Old 03-03-2005, 20:36   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by BlackBelt
One other side note...I used the Ameristep Outhouse this past season, until I found a blind called "BuckStumper" from GH Decoys out of OK.
Nothing, and I mean NOTHING has seen me sitting in that tree stump. It's a 4 panel blind that you set up in a minute that looks like a big ol' tree stump. Put some brush around it, and you are invisible. Put some brush or Sneaky Leaf's in your hat, and just look like vegitation growing out of a tree stump. Downside is that there is no roof on the blind and it's a bit pricey at $180.
I can't wait to use it during turkey season!
That sounds cool, but to be honest, I like the fact that I can sit in this blind and not get wet. Don't get Me wrong, If I get wet hunting, than so be it, but if I can avoid it......;f
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Old 03-20-2005, 14:58   #10
rfb45colt
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Quote:
Originally posted by noway
tip; I've been buying the plastic stakes from homedept or walmart camping section. Much easier and lighter than fabricating a new stake. They also aren't as noise when carrying the outhouse in the bag with the stakes bouncing around. If you loose one, no bigger deal, they are cheap. The also hold much better than what comes with the kit.

I use the plastic tent stakes too, and you're absolutely correct, they are cheap, light, and work better than the steel rods, especially in soft or sandy ground... but only until the ground freezes. Down in FL where you're at, that's not a concern. But here, up north, it most definately is. By the time our late Nov. gun deer and Dec. muzzleloader seasons roll around, there's several inches of frost in the ground. Those plastic tent stakes won't penetrate it at all. OTOH, if you grind a point on the spring-steel stakes, you can usually push them right through the frost layer by standing on them. When the frost gets real deep, I bring along an old hammer. I can drive the steel stakes into a foot of frost with it... and then you also need the hammer to pull them out.

BTW... the cost of the spring-steel stakes is about the same as those plastic ones. A 3' piece of 1/4" diameter rod (which can make three 10" or four 7" stakes... allowing for a 2" bend on the top) is about $2. You can keep them from making noise, while being carried, simply by putting a rubber band around them.
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Old 03-23-2005, 10:19   #11
Rhinodo99
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I have a doghouse and a penthouse blind. Both are really nice, but the penthouse is huge. The TSC is a joke. It fogs up on cold mornings and you can't see through it. ;Q
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