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Building a Boat Blind. Help???

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I've got a small 12' boat, need a light weight easy blind, & cost is a concern. My design is going to be to mount 3 post mount holes along the sides of the boat facing inward. I want to buy conduit (something light) to put in the holes. I want to use burlap plus field grass as my sides. I'd like to pop the poles out of the holes and roll up the burlap & the poles while rowing frown.gif

My questions:

1. What do I use as my mounts on the sides of my boat and where do I buy them?

2. How do I attach the burlap to the poles that will be inserted in the side of the boat?

3. How do I attach the field grass to the burlap (simple no sewing)?

4. What should I use between my posts to attach all (other than the burlap)? I've seen rope or even bungee's.

Thanks all...

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I used PVC piping to make the frame for my blind. But, my boat is a 14ft kayak and weight is a huge concern. I cable tied blind material and some grass to the pvc frame. I've been thinking of doing the same thing for my 12ft aluminum boat. One way to make it collapsible and more rigid is to use 1/2" PVC by getting 1/2" outside diameter piping and sliding it inside of 1/2" inside diameter piping. Works great, sets up fast and easy, packs down small and light, and it is easy to transport. Good luck with your search.

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So you're going to have 3 poles on each side sticking up and that is what you're going to attach the burlap\grass to, by running it from pole to pole correct?

So what you'd have to do is mount 3 brackets to the side of the boat on each side to hold the poles upright, and you want these poles to be removable, correct?

Here's what I'd do:

take some alum tubing that measures 3/4 X 3/4 on the INSIDE. I think you should be able to find it at a hardware store or Home depot, menards wherever. cut 6 pieces about 1.5"-2" long stand them upright and drill a bolt hole thru on the bottom (thru two walls) this will be your mounting holes and the bolt going through will be the stopper so the conduit doesnt slide all the way through. Mount them to the boat in the upright postion so the bolt hole is on the bottom. Make sure you bolt on the tubing tight and use the nuts with the nylong in them so they lock up nice and tight.

You could also get some 90 degree conduit connectors for the tops of your conduit poles and run another peice horizontally between the poles to add a bit of stability and also something to drape the burlap over. Since you are using 3 poles on each side, I dont know if they make "T" connectors for conduit but if you wanted to do this that would be the way to go. Put a "T" on the middle post and 90 degree connectors on the outside polse and tie the whole thing in together.

As far as grass you can get 4X4 mats of shadow grass or whatever it's called at Gander and I would just zip tie it to the 3 vertical poles, then you could roll up the whole side (after taking out the horizontal poles if you decide to do them). Understand what I'm getting at?

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Here is what it looks like on my Kayak.

The Boat


The Blind Stored for travel


Small and compact


5 minutes Later



Dropped down to paddle


The frame


hope this gives you some ideas

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Your pretty darn close. The only thing is that I want this to be easy so I want to basically have just the 3 poles inserted into some type of a holder on the sides of the boat, but I don't want a T at the top only becuase I don't want top poles as this will add more time to put up and take down. My questions are:

1. How can I angle my pole holding tube at about a 45 degree angle from the side of the boat so the poles point towards the middle of the boat?

2. Would you use rope or some type of bungee cord in between the post poles for stability and to attach some grass?

3. I do plan on cutting my own grass. What is the best way to attach to the burlap?


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maybee put a bend in the poles about 6" up from the bottom so they would lean back towards the boat.

For stability you'll just have to build it and from there see what works best for you. If it were me I'd use more conduit and the connectors like I stated before, I cant see rope or bungies doing a very good job, but try it and see what happens.

Zip ties. A lot of them. maybee paint them if you want before you put them on.

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I'm Not sure about conduit but I'm pretty sure you can get PVC connectors that are bent at varying degrees. I would for sure have a chord of some sort along the top to keep your material from sagging. Make sure to also have a bungee or something that secures the front and back poles to the their repsective end of the boat which will help with stability. As for the blind material itself. I wouldn't use burlap - it will soak up water which adds weight and it will take awhile to dry. We tried it for years and finally gave up. I would buy some of the camo netting they sell which is already a little leafy which adds some depth to your blind. It also dries quickly. If you are cutting your own grass use zip ties to hold it to the material and it should hold up okay. A buddy cut his own cat-tails and rushes and we used them last weekend and it worked like a charm. My brother also found some rafia grass at a fabric/craft store for pretty cheap ($2 a bag) which would also work. The same stuff is about $40 if you go to a sporting goods store. We are now on our third version (finally bought one) of a blind on our boat and are still modifying it. No matter what you will make changes so don't kill yourself overthinking it until you've used it a bit to figure out what's easiest to use. It seems that no matter what we do, dropping the temps 20 degrees and adding darkness seems to add a whole new dimension to the ease of use with any of the blinds we've made.

Good luck and have fun with it - nothing is better than a good night in the garage getting your gear ready.

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How about a scissors blind. I built one for my 12' boat last year. Fairly easy and lightweight and cheap. Also it goes up in about 3 minutes. Made out of 3/4" conduit with 90 degree fittings. For pivot points I used castors with the wheels taken out. I think I spent less than $100 on it (over half of that was for the grass matts) and an evening or two to put it together. I have pictures but they are big and I don't have time to resize them now. I'll try to post them later if you are interested.

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To angle the poles in how about using a flag pole holder you can buy anywhere. Not sure how stable it would be but I'd imagine it would work if it wasn't to tall and heavy.

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