If you are reading this, turkey season has just opened in a few select places in the country. If you are still waiting to chase the first gobblers of the new season, your time is coming soon. As shooting time draws near, it’s time to go over some last minute details which will help ensure that the season goes off without a hitch.
All shotguns need to be checked and lubed. Most of us leave our shotguns in the closet until turkey season begins. This is not a big crime as shot patterns won’t change with time as long as the same loads are being used every year. However, shotguns dry out and need to be oiled. Not just the feeding action either; swivels need to be checked and oiled for quietness, hand guards need to checked and tightened if they are rattling, and springs need to be removed and oiled. Springs make a lot more noise than people realized and a light coat of oil will lessen their noise level as they scrape and rub against their housing tube.
Calls need to be checked. If you are above novice level and have become proficient at latex mouth calls, you will need to check them. Hopefully you have kept them refrigerated to prolong their lives, but regardless of how you stored them, you will need to check them for proper tension and damage. Give your latex calls a try to make sure they sound the same. Also, detecting cracks or tears might seem like an obvious task but small cracks are hard to see and they are sure signs that the integrity of the call is compromised.
Other calls that could need attention are box and push calls. Box calls mostly have one central hinge screw and you will need to make sure this is checked. Moisture can cause wood calls to swell and tighten around the hinge screw. To prevent this from affecting your call, remove the screw and rub some mineral or vegetable oil on the threads and reinstall. These two oils are natural and non-corrosive and will not only keep your screw from rusting but they will also keep the wood preserved and protected from moisture. It is important that you do not get oil on the friction part of the call as it will not hold chalk if it is wet.
Push calls are all different but most have springs included in their actions. Springs will need to be checked and slightly oiled, and all screws will need to be checked for tightness. Neglecting small details in your preparations won’t always come back to bite you, but why wait around to get bit?