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Box vs. Scratch Calls


Dan189

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Hello. I am new to turkey hunting. I have been doing a lot of homework reading various articles on how to scout/setup/call/etc, and would like everyone's advice on a fairly inexpensive call for a rookie turkey hunter.

I did read one article that recommended a high-pitched box call if you live in a traditionally windy landscape (RR valley falls into that category).

I was at Sportsman's the other day looking at calls, but there are so many in each category I didn't even know where to begin.

Any and all advice and specifics on brand/model would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks.

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Man, one call will NEVER do. grin Seriously, you should have a slate call and a box call and before you're done with this new obsession you'll have several of each along with mouth calls and snuff cans and wingbones and.....

Fact is, turkeys show a definite preference to one over the other every day. The more calls that you carry and know how to use, the better off you'll be.

As far as the higher pitched calls go. I believe the glass and crystal calls are mostly higher pitched than the slate calls. I have a Rohm Brothers custom box call that is very high pitched and works well for long distance calling and during windy conditions. You can probably find info on them on the web.

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DonBo,

I appreciate the feedback. I can see exactly what your saying, because from everything I've been reading on the web guys are carrying:

1 slate call

1 stryker

1 box call

2 mouth calls

1 owl hooter

1 crow call

My dilemma is that I want to ease my way into it. I can maybe budget for 2 of these. I am looking for inexpensive, and ease of use, and hopefully somewhat effective. any advice would be appreciated.

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Dan,

If you pick up a Pot call you can mix up differnt strikers to get some different sounds. The power Crystal call is still a favorite of mine-- nice range of calls, easy to condition and it can really scream if you want it to. I have seen some striker packs and they carry an acryilic, a hardwood and possibly a carbon striker. 3 different sounds from the same call. I would however have an experienced turkey hunter show you how to use one or pick up a video.

Good Luck

Steve

Good luck with your call selections and your hunt.

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If you wanted to get two calls. I would probably go with a Primos Double cutter box call and Primos Ol Betsy Slate call. I'm not a total Primos guy, but I do like the Double cutter because of the groove for your thumb for clucks and cutting. I think a box call will give you some volume for windy days. I think that a call like Ol Betsy are easier to use and tend to work good on calm days. I just picked up a pack of locator calls with the crow, owl,& pileated woodpecker from Knight & Hale that I like alot better than the Primos ones for twenty bucks

There is alot of choice thats for sure. Good Luck

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delzz,

thanks for the info. gives me a reference point, and something to research so I don't go into the retail store flying blind.

How much maintenance have you seen with the double cutter and ol' betsy?

Also how difficult were they to learn, as well as the mouth calls that you picked up. I've been water fowling pretty heavily for a few years, and noticed there is definitely a learning curve with various duck/goose calls, how would you say these compare?

Thanks!

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Dan189, I've had good luck with the" Triple Threat" By Quaker Boy. It has an acrylic,slate and aluminum surface all on one call. Get two strikers and you have some variety. I've hunted 3 seasons and have 2 toms to my credit. This is an easy way to go for a first timer. Some of the other calls need some practice to sound good. I'm still a rookie but this has been pretty simple to do. Also make sure your decoys are facing you and inside your shooting range. Good Luck DrJ. Can't wait till Weds. Am 349-A.....

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DrJ,

I havn't got around to decoys. do you ever hear of guys hunting sucessfully without them? I guess if it was anything like waterfowling, it would be pretty much impossible. But if it were like deer hunting, it helps but not necessary.

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

A slate style call paired with a boxcall will be easiest to learns as well and very versitile.

Slate is geenral the most forgiving surface to play. Both glass and crystal surfaces require more frequent condition to get good sounds out of them. The metal surfaces are the hidhest pitched but are also a bit tricky to work.

Boxcalls are one of my favorite turkey calls. It's a very versitile call played either soft or loud and cuts the wind well.

My personal favorite production calls are the Quaker Boy Grand Old Master boxcall and and HS Strut Champion slate over glass. Either buy a striker pack or it you have access to some 1/4-3/8" hardwood dowels or an old carbon arroe shaft and are handy you can make a few of you own that should make good turkey sounds. All you need are dowels, glue, saw, drill and sandpaper. For the handle you can use a 3/4" dowel or an old corn cob.

Make sure to get an acrylic or carbon striker that'll work on a wet call it you hunt in the rain.

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

DrJ,

I havn't got around to decoys. do you ever hear of guys hunting sucessfully without them? I guess if it was anything like waterfowling, it would be pretty much impossible. But if it were like deer hunting, it helps but not necessary.

If I'm hunting any season other than an early season I leave the decoys at home. During later seasons decoys have cost me more toms than they have lured into rnage. The mature tom is used to the hens coming to him. When he sees the hen decoy he often goes into gobbling/strut mode out of shotgun rnage and then the real herns show up and the party's over. Without a decoy he'll just keep looking for that hidden hen.

Try to set up behind a small rise in terrain, bend in a field road, etc so when the turkey shows up where you can see him he's already in shotgun range.

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Very helpful Borch. I am actually off to scheels right now to go check out some calls. It helps to get multiple opinons especially when I can start to see trends overlapping.

What do you think about multiple mouth calls, such as owl, crow, etc? are they effective?

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What do you think about multiple mouth calls, such as owl, crow, etc? are they effective?

I rarely use locator calls. Generally turkeys gobble on their own eventually. Few of us have the huge areas needed to chase a distant gobble anyway. It's nice to hear one gobble but most of us would be better off staying put and relying on scouting to get us set up in an area known to hold birds.

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from what I understand locator calls, just produce a loud noise for them to respond to when scouting. why would a crow or owl call work better than a duck or goose call?

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  • 'we have more fun' FishingMN Creators

Some guys have luck with goose calls. I've never heard one shock gobble to a goose. Now sandhill cranes and hawks...that's a different story. I have had luck getting shock gobbles from both crow and owl calls. Out west I won't go hunting without a crow call.

The boxcall makes an excellent locator as well. But you need to be prepared to set up quickly if you get a close response.

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