Turkey Box Calls

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Project by Deadeye posted 04-24-2013 06:03 PM 1885 views 1 time favorited 3 comments Add to Favorites Watch

Motivated by others on this site, I decided to make a couple turkey box calls for the upcoming PA season. The one on the right was my prototype I made out of a piece of leftover cedar siding. The darker one is made from a piece of Black Walnut firewood, I squared up on the bandsaw, table saw and planer. This is the first time I raided my firewood pile, but definitely won’t be the last. I am pretty happy with the way the walnut one came out, and it sounds real good too. I really enjoyed making them, and plan on making more. I think my joinery will be a little better now with a couple under my belt, and all my angles and cheater pieces figured out.

I would welcome any advice, especially when it comes to type of finish and/or “tuning” the call.

Also, I read that the waterproof finish some of the commercial call makers use is just blackboard paint, does anyone have any experience with this?

Thanks -

-- Even if you are on the right track, you will get run over if you just sit there.

3 comments so far

View ghost5's profile


302 posts in 2984 days

#1 posted 04-24-2013 09:23 PM

Looks good. Yes they use blackboard paint on some. I don’t bother with it myself I like the wood surfaces to be able to make the sound without any material other than chalk in the way.

Do not put any finish on the underside of your paddle or the top edge of the sides. Thinner sides make the call deeper and raspier while thicker sides will give you a high pitch but can cause it to squeak. I use a file on the underside of my paddles now across the grain to lightly roughen the surface for a better sound.

I use clear stain and lacquer on mine but shellac works great, too. As does WOP and most oils.

-- Tommy,

View bake's profile


389 posts in 4730 days

#2 posted 04-25-2013 05:34 AM

Nice job. Now go whack a big tom with them!

-- I love the smell of Home Depot in the morning, it smells like.......carpentry. Bake, Bar Lazy U Woodworks, Lehi,UT.

View 1countryboy's profile


11 posts in 2930 days

#3 posted 04-25-2013 10:58 PM

I like them! I’ve been wanting to try my hand at making one but haven’t yet. Maybe I will go raid my wood pile :)

-- You don't have to be good, just be good at hiding your mistakes.

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