Building a DIY pallet blind on the cheap
Call me cheap or call me resourceful, but if I can repurpose something functional and put it to good use, that’s a whole lot more satisfying than throwing it away and blowing a paycheck on a newfangled replacement.
That’s why when I finished my big summer project – a do-it-yourself 8-by-10 chicken coop out of reclaimed materials – I took serious stock of the leftover wood pallet pile and thought creatively about how I might use up the remaining free skids and oddball pieces of scrap lumber.
In that moment, it dawned on me that I could simultaneously entertain my four-year-old son for a few hours (thereby getting him out of the house so my wife could focus on our newborn baby daughter), and also deplete some of my materials stack at the same time, by slapping together a sweet little hunting blind. Now that’s killing three birds with one stone, my friends.
So I set to it, and I decided to build the whole shebang on my utility trailer so it would be easier to transport to a hunting location of choice (once I figure out where exactly it will be most useful).
The blind was completed in just a few hours, and there’s no reason anyone with access to a few pallets, a screw gun and a few other essential tools/materials can’t do the same. Therefore I share it here for mass reproduction, but I have to give credit to my good buddies Jody and Mush for the inspiration. They pulled it off first, and guess what – they didn’t even find it on Pinterest.
Here’s what you’ll need:
- Four to five wooden pallets.
- 2½-inch deck screws.
- Screw gun/drill.
- Construction grade stapler and staples.
- Blind material/burlap and paint.
- Roofing material – tin, shingles, rubber roofing, etc.
- Five 4-foot 2x4s.
- Assorted scrap lumber pieces (at least 2-feet in length).
To build the structure, lay one pallet flat on the ground with the side holding more boards facing up. Then, frame out three sides by overlapping the ends of the pallets (placed on their sides) so that the solo end that stands alone in the middle has its longer ends sticking out on either side of the “short side” of the pallet lying on the ground. This will give you a nailer for the two other sides that oppose each other and run the full length of both “long sides” of the ground pallet. These should sit flush with the base pallet.
Angle drive several screws into all attachment points to connect the three sides to each other and the base. It’s best to have at least one screw at the top and one at the bottom for each seam, as well as directly into the base pallet. Feel free to add a cleat for stability if needed.
Then, run a 2×4 across the top of the open sidewall that doesn’t have a pallet. This will be your entrance. Once everything is secure, run four 2-foot extender boards vertically in each of the corners. This will support your roof and also create a viewing quadrant and shooting rest, utilizing the top of the pallet frame as your rest.
Connect the vertical extenders with horizontal 2x4s, and put a roof on it. This could come in the form of plywood with tar paper/shingles, a piece of tin, or in my case, another pallet wrapped with an old piece of rubber roofing material.
Once the roof is on, simply wrap and staple the whole structure with camouflage blind material, which is relatively inexpensive. If you don’t have access to this, get some burlap material and a can of black spray paint just to break up its outline. Be sure to let it air out for a few weeks and then transport it to your intended hunting location.
If you don’t have a trailer, you could easily build this on site. Throw in an old pop up chair, and you have a really nice ground blind that’s breathable in warm weather and perfect for rifle or crossbow hunting. If planning to hunt with a vertical bow, just extend your roof higher so you can comfortably stand and draw your bow.
This same setup would probably even work without a roof for waterfowl or dove hunting, with a little ingenuity and plenty of natural brush added on the outside.
When you get creative, you can build some pretty cool things to aid in your enjoyment of the great outdoors. It doesn’t cost much money, and you don’t even need Pinterest to come up with the idea. However, if somebody actually harvests an animal from one of these creations, I’d like to hear about it! That’d be pretty neat. Best of luck!