Elevated Blind Legs and Elevator Bracket Weight Capacity

randomguy

Member
So I’m mentally preparing to build an elevated box blind. I’m thinking 8’x6’. I don’t really have access to haul anything except my pickup truck and I’ll be out on the far corner of the property. So I’ll be doing almost 100% of the assembly on site.

Anyway, I’m thinking that I like the idea of using angled 4x4 legs and elevator brackets. Two questions:

With straight legs, some people seem to want to dig the posts in and some people even pour concrete. With angled legs, it looks like most people are just sitting them right on the ground. Shouldn’t I be concerned about uneven settling?

It looks like most of the elevator bracket sets have a 1000lb weight capacity. I’m doing a CAD model to get my mind wrapped around the construction. I have the 2x6 base, the floor plywood, and the front wall in my model and I’m at 450 lbs already. I’m missing three walls, a roof, a man and a boy. No way I’ll be under 1000 lbs. Thoughts on this?

Thanks!


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j-bird

Well-Known Member
My 2 cents worth. 6 X 8 is BIG. My "battle wagon" project has a blind like you describe that is 6 feet wide and 7 feet in length and we can put 3 people in it gun hunting. If you are a bow hunter and need the "elbow room" I get it, but a blind that big for gun hunting is almost too big. You don't want to have to do a lot of moving in a blind.

As for the legs. Angled legs will give the structure a wider base and as a result make it naturally more stable. Now you can have a straight leg and essentially build "outriggers" to accomplish this as well and not have the complications of the compound angles if you desire. The brackets you have should take a lot of the pain out of that however. As for the "foundation" I don't like digging holes! I simply use the deck foundation paver/footers and use those to keep my legs/base up off the ground and to level my shooting house. I simply take my level, a floor jack some scrap wood and a large hammer and re-level as needed. I typically do this about a month before season while I am prepping the rest of the shooting house for use as well.

As for your weight and brackets....I assume (and you know what they say about that) that the weight is per bracket. A bracket that will only support 250 pounds is going to be rather flimsy. Folks use these bracket in the exact same way you are all the time. You could however call the manufacturer and get a clearer answer as well.

Something else that will help your weight concerns. Lighten up....seriously. You are building a blind....not a house. You don't need a stud every 12 or 18 inches. You don't need double sills above and below your window opening. Keep in mind if your building in a modular fashion your going to have to lift these things as well. Also consider in your CAD model that a 2 x 6 is actually 1.5 x 5.5....also make sure you know what density of material you are using. CAD is great....but it only knows what you tell it.
 

randomguy

Member
Thanks for your two cents. Here's my thinking with most of it. My son is 13 and we're in a 5'x5' ground blind now, hunting with Crossbow's. I took a buck out of it with my 870, but there's not enough room for the two of us with a shotgun. So I went another foot deeper. As for the width, I was mostly thinking about saving all the cutting by leaving it 8' long. Typically when we're hunting, he's on the bow and I'm "advising", but traffic could actually come from either direction, meaning that the shooter has to be able to swing and dodge the advisor. I could probably get away with 6' or 7' wide, but it seems like it would drive a lot of work to make it shorter.

As for the legs, I did think about digging in a cinder block or something for the angled legs to sit on. Or even just getting the biggest landscaping stone I can find and leveling the four of them. Think this would work?

I wondered about the weight being per bracket, rather than per the set. You raise an interesting question. This bracket is sold as a set and it seems pretty clear that they're saying 1000 lbs total. But I'm assuming that there has to be at least a 3X safety factor in there. I don't even buy the fact that the stuff they show in the pictures is <1000 lbs.

You also raise a good point about the density. I looked up the weight of treated lumber in a couple different places and averaged the values. I could probably remove a stud or two, and I really only need a double sill on the top side for some extra meat to mount the hinges on. I'm not planning on using actual windows. I'm just thinking a swing door from plywood and pine and painting everything black, including the inside. In theory, hopefully the enemy would notice the difference between open and closed.

Thanks again for your post. I'll keep drawing and post some more revisions later. I'd be interested if you have any other recommendations!
 

Jeff H

Well-Known Member
For angled legs you can place concrete pads or pavers as a base to help resolve your settling issue. I went with straight legs, dug holes, poured concrete but mine is 8x8 and weighs a ton. Digging the holes was actually easier than I thought.
 

BoneCrusher20

Active Member
This was a 6x5 build i did this last year, 2x4 studs, osb, metal siding...heavy sob, i actually used my brothers boom truck to lift up the walls and roof piece by piece, as previous year had built one similar and just about killed everyone trying to get the roof on lifting it up manually. Either way i used elevator brackets like you will be, but if you notice in the center to take some weight off the angled brackets used 2 straight elevator brackets into a deck post concrete block, as i knew i was probably over the weight rating. Think that 1000 lbs is what they have to say to be compliant, but think those brackets can handle more than they say, especially if you tie everything together. but that's an opinion only.

i agree w/ J-bird 6x8 is way too big, going to have a lot of blind spots. I'm convinced 5x5 is much better size for viewing and not overly crammed.
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willy

Active Member
The one time I used the elevators on a blind, I tipped it into position and then dug around the legs to settle them to level. It was easy and keep in mind it don't have to be perfect but close enough so water drains where you want it to.

After getting the blind in position I pounded long t-posts into the ground at the opposite angle of the legs and then used large u-bolts and strapped the t-post and leg together. Its as solid as any blinds i have.
 

Mennoniteman

Well-Known Member
I've set up hunting blinds commercially, installing them for a company that sold them, and we never had a problem with 4x4s sinking into the ground with the weight of a blind, although sinking could be a problem in swampy soils. Uplift is the biggest problem, a storm with high winds can flip a hunting blind. We drill a 5/8 hole into the bottom of the 4x4, on the outside about 5" up from the bottom, angled in thru the bottom inside corner of the post, and pound a 4' #5 re-bar down through the bottom of the post, angled inwards. This rebar also helps prevent the post from sinking. This is the company's spec's and they've never had a problem with settling or a blind blowing over with several thousand installations.
 

BoneCrusher20

Active Member
I've set up hunting blinds commercially, installing them for a company that sold them, and we never had a problem with 4x4s sinking into the ground with the weight of a blind, although sinking could be a problem in swampy soils. Uplift is the biggest problem, a storm with high winds can flip a hunting blind. We drill a 5/8 hole into the bottom of the 4x4, on the outside about 5" up from the bottom, angled in thru the bottom inside corner of the post, and pound a 4' #5 re-bar down through the bottom of the post, angled inwards. This rebar also helps prevent the post from sinking. This is the company's spec's and they've never had a problem with settling or a blind blowing over with several thousand installations.

I really like this idea, as I've actually dug 2' holes with concrete pad on the bottom and buried them with gravel and then cable attached to each post to tie down.

how bad are your frosts? Here in N WI it gets very deep and anything not buried will heaving all over the place but think my next blind I'm going to try like you say just on surface and worse case jack it up and re level


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buckdeer1

Well-Known Member
On the ones I have built with elevators,by the way cheapest I have found was from sportsmans guide.I did 2 different methods,one is run a cable straight down from bottom and screw anchor in ground the other is to take a 4x4 or 4x6 and I put one on north side and one on south side.I put a couple feet in ground and mounted tight up against bottom side of blind for a couple feet up blind.Mine are only about 7 ft off ground but one blew over twice before I anchored so they have to be secured.With cross braces and the legs they will be secure with the elevators
 

randomguy

Member
This was a 6x5 build i did this last year, 2x4 studs, osb, metal siding...heavy sob, i actually used my brothers boom truck to lift up the walls and roof piece by piece, as previous year had built one similar and just about killed everyone trying to get the roof on lifting it up manually. Either way i used elevator brackets like you will be, but if you notice in the center to take some weight off the angled brackets used 2 straight elevator brackets into a deck post concrete block, as i knew i was probably over the weight rating. Think that 1000 lbs is what they have to say to be compliant, but think those brackets can handle more than they say, especially if you tie everything together. but that's an opinion only.

i agree w/ J-bird 6x8 is way too big, going to have a lot of blind spots. I'm convinced 5x5 is much better size for viewing and not overly crammed.
View attachment 17823

The blind spots are a good point that I should also mention. The location will be right in the SW corner of the property, looking over corn/bean field. I’ll probably put in some flapped peep holes on the side walls for a quick look, but the sides and the back are no good for a shot because it’s all super thick brush. Plus that’s the property line. So we’ve seen both Eastbound and Westbound traffic both at dusk and dawn and it’s not as predictable as I’d like. But the traffic is there. This is one of my reasons for the extra width with a two man setup: the possibility of two shooters needing to swing a long gun either direction at the same time.

Thanks for everyone’s advice. I’ll post some more screenshots later this weekend.


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I will be watching this with great interest since I am also planning on building a shooting house.Can't sit in colder weather as I get older.Thinking about a 6x6 platform and putting a 5x5 ground blind on this.Looking for pros and con's for those who may have tried this.All comments are welcome.
 

Zeek

Member
I will be watching this with great interest since I am also planning on building a shooting house.Can't sit in colder weather as I get older.Thinking about a 6x6 platform and putting a 5x5 ground blind on this.Looking for pros and con's for those who may have tried this.All comments are welcome.
I did this a couple years. Unfortunately pop ups don't take the ice and snow well. I got a soft side redneck and fixed that issue. Well worth the $. Since I threw half of one away on cheap pop ups.
 

BoneCrusher20

Active Member
I've built a number of them from your plain 4 sided to octogons. Things I've learned that maybe can help others.

1) I don't go higher than the skidteer arms or tractor bucket forks. I like 10' platform, so can drop the fully assembled stand right on it. I've gone higher and then usually have to build it modular style and lift up piece by piece and for me the roof was always an issue, lucky no one ever got hurt.

2) elevator brackets vs buying metal platform like the landmark and bolderton. Metal platform for simple stands where I'm cutting weight say wood frame and metal Siding no osb. For heavy stands elevator brackets no doubt spend the $90.

3) style I have almost stopped making square stands as I've found I prefer octogon style blinds, less blind spots and 6x6 more efficiently uses space for 2 ppl vs a square. However still experimenting with what I can build more efficiently and like better hunting....either octogon that looks more like muddy bull where it has bow windows in the corner or all same measurement size octogon where it is all bow windows. If anyone needs advice on octogon builds happy to share plans over DM.




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DrDirtNap

Active Member
I built a 6 x 8 box blind box using elevators back in 2015. I used Deerview windows and the whole blind is built with treated lumber all screwed and glued. I used 2x2’s and not 2x4’s for my studs. I also ran my plywood sides overlapping the 2x6 base. This enables you to not need many 2x2 studs at all. They were really only necessary where there was a seem or around the windows. I built it in sections in my barn and then took it apart and moved to the farm. I was fortunate to have to young men to help me get it put together in the field.
Overall, it ended up being a bigger project than I had originally planned and I now have a new appreciation for the cost of “store bought” box blinds. I can send you more pictures if you would like more.

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Laker

Active Member
I built our first box blind at home out of plywood and 2x3 studs, then hauled it up to my place on a trailer. We got it up, but it was a chore. It's 4x8' and only 5' elevated. Then, my Son and I assembled a little plastic booner blind I bought from Menard's, and put it on a 10' platform. I remember thinking at the time, "I'll never build another one from scratch." It was a lot easier and the end product is better than I can make on my own. A couple years go by, and I start thinking about building something "big".

I guess it's kind of like women. If they could really remember how horrible childbirth is, they'd stop at one.

I need to chant this over and over until I lose the urge.
MUST. NOT. BUILD. ANOTHER. FROM. SCRATCH.
 
Thanks, Ice and snow are my major concern. Will rethink my thought process over the next couple of weeks.Will hunt a ground blind for up upcoming Ohio muzzleloader season.
 
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