The movement required to rattle in a buck can torpedo the best setup, especially when a wise whitetail hangs up in thick brush. This easy-to-make rig allows a hunter to rattle one-handed, with minimal movement, to draw in big deer. The rig installs easily on stands with catwalk-type floors. You’ll need to drill a hole in the floor of wooden stands.
Modifying the Antler
Cut the head off a 3⁄8-inch threaded bolt, leaving about a 6-inch shaft. Drill a hole in the base of the antler to accept the shaft; move the bit back and forth to widen the hole. Set the shaft in the hole with two-part epoxy, making sure that approximately 4 inches extends beyond the antler base.
Thread two 3⁄8 x 11⁄4-inch rubber washers and one 3⁄8 x 11⁄2-inch fender washer on the shaft; follow with another fender washer and two rubber washers. Attach the wing nut.
Drill a 3⁄16-inch hole horizontally through the bottom of the other antler base. Tie off 3 feet of black bungee cord.
In the Stand
- Mount the antler so that the two fender washers are against the top and bottom of the treestand floor. Tighten the wing nut.
- Tie off the bungee-equipped antler to a shooting rail or nearby tree limb directly above the mounted antler.
- To rattle, grasp the top antler and tickle the rack below.
The Dangling Rig: Try “Tickling” a Deer
If you hunt out of a climbing treestand, you can still rattle one-handed. Just tie on a longer length of bungee cord [a] and then sink the other antler in the ground below you. Pull up on the cord and then lower it, causing the antlers to clack against each other. To a buck, the slight tickling will sound like a fight winding down.