November 03, 2010
Goose decoys occupy a lot of floor space...
...But by thinking outside the box, Jim Rung of Illinois found the easiest and most efficient use of space by storing them on the ceiling.
Jim Rung of Lake Villa, Illinois, decided to do something about the dozens of full body Canada goose decoys taking up several cubic yards of space inside his garage. Stacking goose decoys scratches the paint, wipes mud and dirt from one decoy to another, and just generally makes them a nuisance throughout the year even if they are stored in bags or on a drag sled.
"Not having an enclosed trailer or sufficient storage space, my full body decoys were constantly being taken to and from the garage for my hunting trips," Rung said. "After tripping over my full body goose decoys several times, driving into them with my vehicle and having them scattered all over the place, my full body goose decoys had to be moved to someplace else."
Rung looked at the sole remaining available storage space inside his otherwise packed-to-the-ceiling garage and decided that instead of underfoot, his decoys might find a better home overhead. He came up with such a simple system that anyone can use it, as long as they have space enough to hang a few dozen decoys upside down from the ceiling.
"The system is foolproof," he said. " The conduit poles used to suspend the decoys are easy to take down for placing the decoys in my truck bed and just as easy to place to hang them up between hunts."
Rung said the first thing he had to do was to decide on the location on the ceiling where there's adequate space. Then a stud must be found and marked. Using a magnetic stud finder, laser level, or just finding the nail heads on a garage ceiling is usually fairly simple because garages aren't usually finished to the degree as interior ceilings. In a pinch, studs can be found with a sharp probe and marked with a pencil, measuring tape and straight edge.
"Once visually marked and depending on the width of your overhead storage space, evenly screw in some C-hooks to accommodate some half-inch conduit poles," he said. "Three evenly spaced C-hooks placed at each end and in the middle of a 10-foot length of conduit is sufficient to hold the weight of all the goose decoys you can thread onto the conduit. Depending on the gap between the foot base of your decoys, you can screw in or screw out the C-hooks to adjust the gap between the decoy bases and the ceiling."
The storage method works best when the decoy bases are fairly flat against the ceiling. Once stored, it's quite a unique sight to enter the garage and see geese apparently walking upside down in rows on the ceiling.
"I found the easiest way to get your full body decoys on a conduit pole is to line them all up in a straight row, run the conduit pole between the feet of each decoy, then evenly pick up the pole so it remains level so the decoys don't slide off."
Two people standing on stepladders, or backing a pickup into the garage and standing in the bed or on the tailgate, can hang dozens of decoys in a few minutes. For removing the decoys, two people stand on stepladders or in the pickup truck bed, remove the pole and set it in the pickup bed or tilt it to slip the decoys free. The decoys slide off easily, filling the pickup bed.
"Not only is it great for hanging and storing decoys, it works for carrying decoys into the field for setting them up or removing them," Rung said. "Just arrange the decoys in a straight row, run a conduit pole between the feet of each full body decoy. A hunter can pick up each end of the pole and walk them to and from the hunting spot."
(Contact Info - Jim Rung, 805 Amber Lane, Lake Villa, Illinois, 60046, email: firstname.lastname@example.org.)
Overhead Full Body Goose Storage System
Materials List for Approximately. 60 decoys:
18 large C-hooks-$2.35 each -$42.30
6 10"x.5" Conduit -$4.00 each -$24.00
Total Cost =$66.30