Shooting Sticks … Make your Own !!

Instead of using a bipod for my squirrel hunting efforts I have settled on shooting sticks … they have worked so well that I wanted to show everyone else how to make your own at home.

Advantages are several … for instance you don’t have to “attach” it to your rifle. You can carry them along or leave them behind such as in a stalking situation. You can get more shooting height out of these for those high angled shots on game way upstairs in the big trees. You can make them to any length that suits you … and finally they make a great walking stick in the woods.

Materials needed :

1 – 1×2 Pine 8 feet long

1 – 1/4 inch bolt 2 inches long

3 – flat washers

1 – wing nut

2 – nails

Camo Paint

Epoxy Glue – 30 minute

Rubber or Leather 1/8ths inch thick

These shooting sticks are designed to be used by sitting on the ground behind them. As for length a set that will be used for horizontal shooting or into the lower limbs of trees just make the sticks half of your own height is a good rule. So if you’re 5’10” or 70″ tall make the sticks 35″ long and they’ll be custom fit to you.

But if you want to shoot WAY upstairs into the tops of large hardwood trees a set made 42″ long is what you need. In this Tutorial I am making a set 42″ long for my squirrel hunting adventures.

First cut the 1×2 into 2 pieces 42 inches long.

Quick Reference

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Then add the dark … paint the head of the bolt and the wing nut too ..

I make the template wide enough to cover both sticks at once … spray on the lighter colored pattern first then add the darker color.

For a camo pattern I used the shape of tree bark and made a template. Transfer the pattern to cardboard and cut out the pieces with an exacto knife.

Now you can remove the masking tape holding the sticks together and paint them. I use the camo paint in the pic and will show you how to make a pattern like mine. Put on a coat and wait 15 minutes then put on a second coat.

Drive in the nails .. any small nail with a head will do … drive them in until about 3/4ths of an inch is still sticking out. Pic shows the length and size of the nails I used.

Dremel off the heads of the nails and deburr the ends … DON’T go sharpening them there is no reason for that … blunt is safer.

Next drill a pilot hole in the bottom of each stick for the nails to be driven into. A bit slightly smaller than the nails is ideal to prevent splitting of the wood on this end grain.

Next mark the sticks for the 1/4 inch bolt … 6 inches from the top on a short set and 7 inches from the top (rounded portion) for the 42 inch sticks. Drill the hole .. your sticks are still taped together.

3 stages of construction … horizontal or “land” sticks and tree top sticks.

Sand off the marked portion for a nicely curved top to the sticks.

Next use a pellet tin or the mouth of a plastic cup and mark the top of the sticks for rounding off … this is what will be in the palm of your hand when using them as a walking stick.

Now tape the 2 pieces together … line them up side to side and end to end so they are flush on all sides … then use masking tape and wrap it around in 5 different places to keep the sticks lined up for the next set of operations.

Next sand the wood with 120 grit sandpaper … no need to go any finer on the sanding as we want the sticks to have a flat finish after painting.

After sanding all of the flat sides you’ll notice that the corners are sharp … round them over with sandpaper and the sticks will feel much nicer in your hands.

A 1×2 actually measures 3/4″ thick by 1.5 inches wide. Next rip or trim that width down to 1.25 inches. I am working outside today and didn’t bother to bring out the table saw … so I just ripped mine on the bandsaw.

Ripping these down reduces weight and trims them up so they feel real nice in the hands 🙂

Ripped and unripped … trim them down and you’ll enjoy them more.

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