DIY Antler Mount

| February 8, 2017
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.

I’m trying to improve my welding skills, so I made an all steel deer antler mount for a nice pair of sheds I had sitting on a shelf. I tried to match the style of a euro style antelope mounting bracket I made last year. I occasionally harvest an animal, or find sheds while out hiking and hunting, and It’s nice to display them.

Fabrication was fairly simple. I used 3/4″ by 1/8″ steel because that is what I had on hand. I could buy a mounting kit, but I like creating, and like I said before, I wanted a bracket to be similar to an antelope euro mount I made last year.

I took about a 10 inch long piece of steel and put a sharp bend in it for the wall plate. I then took an 8-ish inch piece of steel and welded it to the bent wall piece to stick straight out from the wall. Lastly, I bent two short pieces of steel to the the shape of a deer skull, welded it to the 8″ piece of steel, marked where the antlers looked good and cut the excess off each side. I ground down rough welds, rounded and softened edges, taperd the 8 inch piece of steel, and pre-drilled holes in the steel for the antlers and wall screws. I even drilled pilot holes for the antlers to ensure they would end up where I wanted them.

I prepped the surface with a steel wire brush on a drill, and then painted the steel a flat black to simulate an iron look. I mounted the sheds via two screws. One main 2inch screw, and one 1 inch ‘set’ screw. I dropped a little superglue down the pilot holes in the antlers and worked quickly to get them tightened down.

I would have spent between 35 and 60 dollars on a nice prefab antler mount, but I wouldn’t have got the minimalist rustic look I wanted. The scrap metal I had on hand was free, and I used up the rest of an old flat black rattle can. After about an hour and a half of learning and work, and I have an antler mount I am content with.

Considering my MIG 130 Welder also only cost 100 bucks, I’d say it is about half paid off with this project alone. Check out the MIG 130 Welder for yourself. It’s an inexpensive and fun way to pick up welding, and you’ll be glad you did it. Do get yourself a better mask, like this mask or it’ll be the first thing you run out and do after you get your welder.

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Dove Decoy Finally Finished

| February 3, 2017
Photo Credit: Keith Knoxsville
A Hen and a Drake Green Teal on the truck bed. Not a limit on anything, but a fun morning out.

I’m calling the dove decoy project done. There are a million other things that need to get done, and are sort of a priority over the dove decoys. I finished one dove decoy, and it ‘looks good from far but is far from good’. I’m sure it will con some birds to land in the yard, but up close I wasn’t super pleased with my somewhat rushed paint job.

Additionaly, while painting the decoy, I realized I had some improvements to make to the overall carving. For starters, a narrower beak, slightly different wing shape, longer neck, and a somewhat smaller breast would go a long ways toward being ultra-realistic. I’ll probably revisit the dove decoy project, since I have a few blanks ready for shaping, but I wanted one to be done to make good on my promise to post a last dove decoy post when done. I won’t add another post in the future, but I may update a few more photos on the site as I finish others. What do you guys think? You think a dove will land on the fence next to that decoy?

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