Author Topic: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)  (Read 49328 times)

Trooper Bri

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Since we're getting a frost/freeze warning tonight in New England, it's time to get the season started !

A couple years ago, my friend Frank shows up on the ice with this crazy looking contraption bolted to his Jet Sled (i'll go find a pic). It was a blue tarp tied to some bent conduit and other hardware, and tall enough to stand up straight in. He was getting back into icefishing and hadn't get gotten the bug serious enough to buy a real flip over shanty. It didn't take long before i was calling it the Frahillbilly.



There must have been something to it, because i got the bug to do something like that to my Jet Sled. Frank bought a real Frabill (Trekker) and gave me the framework to the Frahillbilly so i could try my luck. After some tinkering, i finally tossed the whole thing and started from scratch.

My goal was to build a flip over shanty that can be bolted to any standard Jet Sled since it's the only thing that fits in my 96 Sable. Also, it must be less than 5 ft tall when setup, and be cheap to make. I would have loved to make the cover out of a real fabric, but never found anything cheap and durable enough in my $$ range. Everything else i used is commonplace items for those who want to dive into this shadetree project.

1'st considerations are framework, consisting of the 2 side plates and 4 roof bows that pivot back. Since they are folding lengthwise with the Jet Sled, i wanted them to sit around the rim of the sled, and stacked neatly on top of each other as not to hang over or in if possible. After a little tape measure time, it was time to start with my 2 side plates that the roof bows mount and pivot on.
 For this task, i chose a high quality aluminum product i've used for other projects, and is perfect for a Frahillbilly project. A retired "No Parking Any Time" street sign ! I don't know squat about aluminum, but this isn't a soft grade.  We do work for municipality vehicles for certain towns, and i got one when one of the guys stopped in our shop. Check with your local town garages. They may have some retired/damaged ones lying around and they'd probably sell you one or two cheap.

The sign is 12" wide, what i was looking for to help reduce overall flexing of the JetSled with this contraption attached, so i cut maybe 8" off the top and bottom of the sign. Then on the cut end, i put a 1", 90 degree flange that will be where the plate bolts to the rim of the Jet Sled. That left me a good sized plate with nice rounded edges. To keep from tearing up my Jet Sled, i also cut a couple 1" strips of the leftover sign to use as a backing plate under the rim. Then i drilled 4 holes, and mounted the plates using 1/4" hardware.
 Since the Jet Sled is molded plastic, it naturally tweaks a bit when released from it's mold and cools. The side plates weren't parallel after bolting them on, but a heat gun and a little persuasion fixed that.





The 4 roof bows are just plain old 1/2" conduit from Cheapo Depot. I broke out of Frahillbilly mode and borrowed a hand conduit bender from a guy at work (maybe 3 or 4' long, with a curved head). Never used one before, but i did pretty good measuring the length of the curve. I only porked one piece of conduit. With a couple tweaks, they were all nearly identical and ready for installing. Maybe i have a future as an electrician.



 Measuring the length of each bow and it's mounting position was simply putting my sittin' pail in the back of the sled and starting with the one that sits on the ice and determines your "work space". Laid it out and marked on the plate and conduit where it needed to pivot, and where to cut the conduit.  The next one determines the height over my head, and the last two are for the cargo area. The lines on the plates are 1" apart and determine the spacing between the conduit when it's folded down, allowing space for the cover material in between.




 Mounting hardware is still standard 1/4". Nut and bolt jammed to the side plate, with a flat washer on each side of the conduit, and then a nylon locknut to hold and allow free pivoting.

My next and final task for the framework is to get my roof bows to flip over and sit in their final positions so planning for the cover can begin. My bow that sits on the ice is my starting spot again. I set it down into position and tied a string to the center of the bow. Then i got on the sittin' pail again and got the overhead bow where i wanted it and tied it to the ice bow. Then repeat for the last two. The ice bow had enough leverage to hold the other 3 in place.

My next problem was figuring out how to anchor the overhead bow in place to hold the 2 rear bows up, plus give me an attach point for the ice bow when i don't want to be enclosed. Frabill uses those hooks, but my side plates are different. That problem was solved hillbilly style with a few bungee cords (with the coiled metal ends), more 1/4" hardware, and a little electrical tape.
With the bows folded over in fishin' position, i dug out that clear tube o' bungees i got from Cheapo Depot, and dug out the 3 lengths i needed that were close and set them aside.
My idea was to make a couple stop posts for each plate that my overhead bow would sit against, and use the bungees for tensioning and spacing. The stop post is just a 1/4" bolt with a locknut turned up enough to allow me to roll electrical tape between and act as a cushion (visible in previous pic).
After that i just tie a knot here and there until i have the right spacing between bows, and some tension. The last bungee is simply hooked over the rim of the Jet Sled.
To set up the shanty i simply flip it over me and then insert the stud into the plate and tighten the nut by hand, then let the bow rest back on them. It's a gloves off deal. No biggie for CT weather or anywhere really since it only takes 30 seconds at most to attach them.



At this point, it's probably late November 2007 (i gotta look), and the framework is done. I'm pleased with the results. I have a solid frame that can be bolted to any Jet Sled. I'm probably retarded for not massaging it more and patenting the thing.

More to come...

Offline mud_n_fun

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #1 on: Sep 18, 2008, 08:03 PM »
Very nice!

Offline jayswimmer09

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #2 on: Sep 18, 2008, 08:16 PM »
NICE!!!!

Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #3 on: Sep 21, 2008, 07:37 PM »
The next step was into unfamiliar territory. I really wanted to make the cover out of cordura, or polyester, or some waterproof fabric, but i've never used a sewing machine, don't know anyone in the business, and the quotes i got were way outside budget for a Frahillbilly. So a couple weeks slipped by while i diddled with that and made my side panel template. While attending tha annual ice fishing seminar at CT Outfitters in early December and get loaded for 1'st ice, i saw what i had been building (obviously visible in pics already).
The Frabill Recon. Dunno when it came out, never saw one on the ice, or researched one man jobbies. But there it was, what i was working on for the most part. The dimensions are pretty flippin' close. It fit into my Sable, so for 159 bucks i had the quick cure for what i had been stuck on. 
That put the project on the back burner for a while. At one point over the past winter i even considered ordering a Recon cover, but that would require reworking the frame (and cheating). No idea what it would cost to buy the cover.

Fast forward to this summer:

Before i settled on Red Green's favorite bonding agent (knew i was headed that direction anyway ;) ), i actually borrowed a sewing machine from my friend's wife to see if sewing 2 pieces of tarp was going to work. Uh, hell no ! Suppose it would have been easier if i had ever used a sewing machine.
Also assisting in taping the seams is a roll of 2" double sided carpet tape. Very thin, and not made of foam. Looks like fiberglass or poly cloth. I actually cut the roll down the middle to make it a pair of 1" wide tapes.



So, since this project is hindsight i can recommend using a thinner tarp, which means less cash too. I went overkill and used one of those heavy black/silver tarps for the cover, and it doesn't fold quite like cloth does. A Tim Taylor moment.

The cover is made from 3 pieces. 2 sides, and the long strip that runs front to back that joins them. Making the template for the side panels was easy. I opened up the shanty framework, and then laid it on it's side, with a piece of tarp underneath. Then using a piece of luan placed against the bows, was able to trace straght lines on the tarp for my side. I then added an inch on the cut sides for bonding, and cut out my master template that i would use to trace out the side panels on the tarp i had for the shanty.



The center strip is simply the length of those angles from front to rear with 6 inches extra for trimming, and the width of the Jet Sled plus the inch on each side for bonding.
After that, it's just a matter of sizing out your pieces and buying the smallest tarp possible you can cut the 3 pieces from. Then just measure and trace out the 3 pieces on the tarp. Marking and cutting straight lines now is a big help during the bonding ordeal. 

Now the fun begins. My advice. Have beer handy. ;)
Logically, you want the center strip to overlap on top of the side panels on your cover like any roof, so i laid out my center panel with the inside facing up on the floor and then ran a line of the 1" double sided tape down each side of it



I then grabbed a side panel and started with my longest straight line edge, which is on the front of the shanty. Then i peeled back an inch or two of the paper on the tape, lined up the edge of the side panel with the center panel, and laid the beginning of the seam down. Then i'd pull on the paper strip slowly while keeping everything lined up while sticking down the tape, and finish that run. Then i ran a strip of the Gorilla duct tape centered over that seam, flipped it over, and ran a strip over the center of the seam on the outside. Flipped the works back over, grabbed the other side panel and repeat.



Making the transition to the next side panel angle is a pain. I first wrestled the tarp by making a small z-fold in the side panel at the angle change to get the tarp edge so it lined up with my line, then applied the tape, then stuck it down. Followed by the duct tape on both sides. Repeat, going back and forth between the side panels to help reduce stress on the seams. It's important to keep the tarp from having wrinkles when you tape it if possible or the tape will eventually lift at the wrinkle. Doing this project on a garage or basement floor is probably best. It took me about 3 hours to tape the darn thing. It turns into a bit of a wrestling match towards the end. Finally, a little work on each end of the center panel where it hits the ice, and the worst of the project is over !



Now the moment of truth. I set up the frame and put the cover on. Not too bad. Making my z-folds when bonding the panels ate up a few inches of overall length, which meant the roof bows didn't quite sit in the angles of the cover, so i had to give and take a few knots in my bungee system. No big wiggle. A slightly bigger hassle was the fact that the cover was a little wider than expected. I porked a measurement somewhere. Squared cover meets curved bows. Result: slightly saggy cover.



I fixed that by cutting 4 pieces of 5/8" wood dowel 28" and wrapped all the ends with some thin foam and duct tape . I zip tied these to the roof bows to make them wider. Here's a before and after pic. You can see the difference in these 2 pics. Much better. I cut them off, and mounted the shanty to the framework.
For now, the only attachment points for the cover are the ends of the roof bows. And once again, duct tape with a zip tie assist. The plan was simply to put 2 ties through the tarp at each bow. I put a 3" strip of duct tape on the inside and outside of the tarp for reinforcement. Left the zip ties loose enough to pivot for folding and unfolding. I actually used 3 ties for the front bow that hits the ice, and beefed up the wear area with extra tape. At some point i may have to attach the cover to the roof bow sides, but that depends on if i actually use it.
As is, i now have a small, stuffy suicide booth. ;) Time to get a fresh razor blade out and make some holes.



A window on each side at bucket sittin' eye level is a no brainer. After pondering the opening size for a minute or two, the pile of mail on my desk caught my eye. One of those junkmail legal sized envelopes was perfect. Traced it onto a piece of paper, added an inch all around, and cut it out. I used a thin Sharpie marker to outline both sides, and the top of the window where i wanted them on my cover. I'm just cutting 3 sides so my window flaps pull down. After that i ran duct tape around the edges, overlapping and closing the hole an inch all around so i have a surface to attach the window flap to, and reinforce the cuts. Then i'm simply using 1" velcro sticky circles on the two corners. I know they're gonna pull right off in the cold, so i'm stapling them to the tarp, and putting a small square of duct tape on the inside or outside wherever the staple ends are visible ;)



One thing i hate about the Frabill Recon is that there is ZERO forward view. You have to lift up the front bow if you want to do a flag check. There's a large clear pocket on it for naked pictures or whatnot, but no window. ???
So...I added what every shanty should have regardless of who makes it. A door !
Part of that came from using a really thick tarp for a cover. With the Recon i can tip up the front bar and use it as a wind break if heat isn't required and see forward. With the Frahillbilly, the tarp gets in the way of the opening when i flip up that bow, so i killed a couple birds right there. I may even check with a guy who does upolstery and see how much to add a zippered door to my Recon.



Anyway. It got treated the same way the windows did for the most part, cut on 3 sides, and taped around the edges to reduce the opening. I used 1" velcro tape to make tabs all around the door opening that wrap on both sides, and used the velcro buttons for the door on the inside and outside. This allows me to open and attach the door panel from the inside and outside. I simply didn't put tape along the "hinge" end of the door so that it will slip to either side of the door "frame" without getting weird.

For the most part, that's all folks. Ready for her maiden voyage. One other point of interest of the build was utilizing the edges of the tarp for my side panels and the front of the shanty along the bottom. That left a rugged finished edge on the ice that had metal grommets. I got my vertical measurements nailed down good. That bonded edge of the tarp sits flat on the ice with little slack on the sides. I can actually screw the side panels on the ice with some 3" sheetrock screws and washers, making it really windproof. I will have a regular anchor screw setup somewhere of course.

Even if i had bought a Jet Sled (60 bucks ?) for this project, it's still cheaper than my Recon, and bigger. Cost is dependent on what you already have lying around.
1/2" EMT conduit is about 6 bucks for a 10' length. 24 bucks if you don't pork yourself during bending.
2" roll of 2-sided carpet tape was 7 bucks.
I used 1 and 1/2 rolls of Gorilla black duct tape. 15 bucks. I only bought this stuff to match the thickness and color of my tarp. If you use a cheaper, thinner tarp, use thinner tape.
And assorted hardware was a few bucks. Everything else i had kicking around the house, or aquired through the good ol' boy network.
For around $100 i have a Flipover shanty that turned out surprisingly well. I know the tarp material would probably suck where the temps are real cold, but here in CT it'll probably do OK. Especially since i aimed for a black color.

I have one last thing to do, but am a bit hesitant. I have some 1" yellow duct tape and want to put "Frahillbilly 2" in 4" letters on each side panel running along the the front edge on the slant where the door is. I'm afraid at this point Frabill is already going to sue me, but what the hell. Life is too short.
Actually, if i had more time and $$ to fritter away, i'm curious if a kit like this you could buy and bolt to a Jet Sled would sell, or be some sort of existing patent infingement. Could be a money maker if the slot exists.

Thanks for reading along guys. This is a great site, glad to have a place to post my madness. ;)



Offline jayswimmer09

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #4 on: Sep 21, 2008, 07:48 PM »
wow! that is madness!!! great job though

Offline pikeking

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #5 on: Sep 21, 2008, 10:28 PM »
We are waiting for the hillbilly stickers on the sides now.
If fishing was work I'd never be sick!


Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #6 on: Sep 22, 2008, 07:12 PM »
I'll get the lettering done at some point in the next few weeks PK. That little roll of yellow duct tape is whispering at me from the junk drawer. Pics of that and some of the other details to follow.

My desire to finish this project came last month when i was redecorating the living room. Somewhere after the new carpet, but before the furniture was delivered. Plenty of room for tarp rasslin'. ;)

Also, since i bought a Frabill, i have no need for this project kicking around the house. If anybody wants a unique shanty (minus the Jet Sled), come and get it. I'll be looking to get rid of it in about a month.

Offline jdisci

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #7 on: Sep 26, 2008, 08:27 AM »
Nice work!


"Like minnows in a bucket..."
Joe

Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty
« Reply #8 on: Sep 27, 2008, 10:21 PM »
Well, with nothing better to do on a rotten rainy day, i got the lettering done. Nothing fancy, and i only did one side. The photo actually makes it look better since all it is is thin yellow duct tape that i overlapped and cut by hand. I used that paper backing from a sticker to make each letter, then simply peeled it off the backing easily, and attached it to the shanty. Looks hillbilly up close.
I had enough left over to complete even more copyright/patent infringements. I cut the roll into thinner strips and simulated the yellow piping that Frahill uses. It runs from front to back ;D I wish i could have taken final side by side pics again, but the new furniture prevents that. I had to move a couple chairs and a table for these pics.



And also a few more pics of the details.
Here's a shot of the inside, with my sittin' pail in the shot. Also a closeup of a roof bow and the wooden dowel fix i came up with for the slightly oversized cover.





A pic of the outside of the cover where i attached it to a roof bow with a tie wrap.



And finally, a pic of the top of my door and the velcro attachment points. It's pretty much the same for the windows.



And with that officially ends the project i believe. Adding a window to the door will probably happen on some other boring rainy weekend to kill an hour. There's still about 12 weeks until 1'st ice for us in CT, and i'd like to pimp my Recon next.
On that list is doing something with those hooks (or something else) so that it actually holds the bows, adding my own plastic runners on the tub, and order up some LED's like mud n fun did. I'm thinking of using six of them. 2 countersunk in each bow, with the wiring running out and attaching at the ends at one hinge point. Then i'll use my LX-1 or maybe even a Milwaukee 14.4v pack i have to run them. Hmmm... More to come. ;)

Thanks again for checking out my project. Just a small one, but better than watching TV. I'm looking forward to the upcoming projects from people who get real ice !

Offline Marlin07

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #9 on: Sep 28, 2008, 02:15 PM »
Man, that is mint!! Thats half the fun about the hard water. Lot's of ingenuity. I like seeing guys build there own stuff instead of relying on walmart or what ever. Great job!!

Offline beeverfishing

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #10 on: Sep 28, 2008, 03:11 PM »
Great Job !!   :clap: :clap: :clap:
  

Offline stumper

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #11 on: Sep 28, 2008, 04:01 PM »
Coming from a guy that sews covers for a living, Im Impressed!!! Very nicely done!!

Offline miket.

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #12 on: Sep 28, 2008, 09:37 PM »
hey trooperbry, way to go, that came out real nice!!!! its great to invent your own gear. now i will know when i see you out on the ice this year, i will be on the look out for you now. that thing is awesome. homemade gear is the best.
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Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #13 on: Sep 29, 2008, 06:42 PM »
Thanks for all the great replies !

I really wanted a real cover to happen stumper. Just curious if you don't mind. If you were to sew up something like this for a friend, what's the actual cost of supplies ? With the Recon checking in at 160 bucks, i wondered if it's even possible to beat that number after buying the JetSled and framework.

You're very likely going to see me in my real shanty Mike. I only finished the thing to get the project out of my head. I may hold on to it long enough to use it once or twice. If i can't give it away after that, i'll seal it up and toss it in the basement. See how it likes being stored.

Maybe even give it away next Halloween. Here kid, hold your bag open wider...  ;D

Offline Marlin07

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #14 on: Sep 29, 2008, 07:26 PM »
Whats your address. I'm gonna put on my bat-man costume from grade 3 three and head over to pick that unit up!! I might get arrested walking around your neighborhood in a bat-man suite but that's the price you pay :laugh: :laugh: :laugh: Nice work, Alway's nice to finish a project!
 

Offline mud_n_fun

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #15 on: Sep 29, 2008, 07:26 PM »


Maybe even give it away next Halloween. Here kid, hold your bag open wider...  ;D


Carefull there! You might have a yard full of 6' tall kids all dressed in frahillbilly ice suits with custom made tricker treat bags this year, ;D :roflmao: :blink: :roflmao: :blink: :woot:

Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #16 on: Sep 30, 2008, 05:27 PM »
Quote
Whats your address. I'm gonna put on my bat-man costume from grade 3 three and head over to pick that unit up!!

Quote
You might have a yard full of 6' tall kids all dressed in frahillbilly ice suits with custom made tricker treat bags this year

LOL. Halloween is on a Friday this year guys, so if you're coming, BRING BEER !!! Once the shanty is gone i'll be giving away my hillbilly tipup lights to other IS visitors. My street is the last one on Rt.83 if you're headed north. I'll leave the shanty in the yard and have a boombox inside cranking out some Frank Zappa to further disturb the neighbors.  ;D

Forgot to mention: JET SLED NOT INCLUDED.  8)

Offline Marlin07

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #17 on: Sep 30, 2008, 08:04 PM »
Frank Zappa! Why not crank some Nuge and really make the neighbors whine. That man makes me wonder why I chose to live my life the way i did. Sex, gun's and rock'n roll.Must be nice to ride a buffalo to work :D

Offline BASSandICE65

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #18 on: Oct 01, 2008, 09:36 AM »
Wow that is a great job! See what a real icefisherman can accomplish when he sets his mind to it. Love the name :laugh:
  



Anyday fishing is better than your best day working!!!!!!!!!

Offline duck doctor

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #19 on: Oct 01, 2008, 09:49 AM »
I have read this post 2 times now and I am still amazed at the finished quality!  Great job man!

Offline Mainehazmt

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #20 on: Oct 02, 2008, 08:24 AM »
Great job!!  My suggestion   sometime on the ice and you see one teenager out there fishing on a bucket making do    give it to him!
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Offline jayswimmer09

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #21 on: Oct 02, 2008, 01:43 PM »
i love the lettering!!!

Offline pikeking

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #22 on: Oct 02, 2008, 01:47 PM »
That's a good idea Hazzy, I like the way you think.
If fishing was work I'd never be sick!


Offline stumper

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #23 on: Oct 03, 2008, 11:49 AM »
Thanks for all the great replies !

I really wanted a real cover to happen stumper. Just curious if you don't mind. If you were to sew up something like this for a friend, what's the actual cost of supplies ? With the Recon checking in at 160 bucks, i wondered if it's even possible to beat that number after buying the JetSled and framework.

You're very likely going to see me in my real shanty Mike. I only finished the thing to get the project out of my head. I may hold on to it long enough to use it once or twice. If i can't give it away after that, i'll seal it up and toss it in the basement. See how it likes being stored.

Maybe even give it away next Halloween. Here kid, hold your bag open wider...  ;D

I would have to check on the material cost, but I know it was cheaper to but a replacement cover for my guide last  yr than for me to sew my own. Heck you can get a "lighthouse"cover for 50 bucks.

http://www.clamcorpstore.com/SearchResult.aspx?CategoryID=291

Offline mud_n_fun

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #24 on: Oct 03, 2008, 05:57 PM »
Dang Bri! I just checked out the link and yes a cover is $50. You might just have to start a new frame work ;D ;D ;D

Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #25 on: Oct 03, 2008, 07:20 PM »
50 bucks for that cover is a good price. It has more material than a Recon since it's transverse to the sled. Now i am curious as to what the simpler cover for a Frabill would cost.

Don't get me warmed up mud. The Frahillbilly Outhouse has a nice ring to it. Anyone in the aluminum tube business ? I wonder if Clam will sue me too ?  ;D

I posted it here for free kind of knowing you guys probably aren't going to drive 3-6 hours for an assembly of tarp, tape, and conduit. ;) My local fishing site haunt here in CT won't get cranked up for the ice until November, so i'm not even bothering posting my project over there for another month at least. But i will heed the advice of Haz and offer it first to a kid in need of a shelter. A very good idea.

Thanks again for all the views and replies ! Looking forward to your build stumper. That round tin shack is going to look awesome on the ice!

Offline stumper

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #26 on: Oct 03, 2008, 07:22 PM »
Im pretty stoked, just crossing my fingers for lots of ice and not much snow. :P

Trooper Bri

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #27 on: Nov 05, 2008, 10:03 PM »
After i finished lettering the Frahillbilly, i figured out the best way to fold it down and stored it away to get an idea of how well it might hold over during a softwater season.

It's only been six weeks, but i couldn't take it anymore, and pulled my ice gear out of the closet. Also opened up the shanty to see if it had any issues with being folded yet, but so far she's looking good.
Just for fun, i tossed most of my regular gear in after i folded it back down. The tarp does eat up a little space in the JetSled, but it's not a problem. Minus the cooler, that's everything in there.



Next (and last) pics to come will be it out on the ice getting broken in along with my schnapps! After that, i'll try and find it a good home. With a little luck and a return of those nice cold temps we were getting, that'll be in 5 or 6 weeks.

Offline mud_n_fun

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #28 on: Aug 23, 2009, 10:09 AM »
How did she work for ya? I just had to dig this topic up. I enjoyed watching this build last summer.

Offline miket.

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Re: Project: Frahillbilly 2 - one man Jet Sled shanty (done)
« Reply #29 on: Aug 23, 2009, 10:49 AM »
Since we're getting a frost/freeze warning tonight in New England, it's time to get the season started !

A couple years ago, my friend Frank shows up on the ice with this crazy looking contraption bolted to his Jet Sled (i'll go find a pic). It was a blue tarp tied to some bent conduit and other hardware, and tall enough to stand up straight in. He was getting back into icefishing and hadn't get gotten the bug serious enough to buy a real flip over shanty. It didn't take long before i was calling it the Frahillbilly.

(Image removed from quote.)

There must have been something to it, because i got the bug to do something like that to my Jet Sled. Frank bought a real Frabill (Trekker) and gave me the framework to the Frahillbilly so i could try my luck. After some tinkering, i finally tossed the whole thing and started from scratch.

My goal was to build a flip over shanty that can be bolted to any standard Jet Sled since it's the only thing that fits in my 96 Sable. Also, it must be less than 5 ft tall when setup, and be cheap to make. I would have loved to make the cover out of a real fabric, but never found anything cheap and durable enough in my $$ range. Everything else i used is commonplace items for those who want to dive into this shadetree project.

1'st considerations are framework, consisting of the 2 side plates and 4 roof bows that pivot back. Since they are folding lengthwise with the Jet Sled, i wanted them to sit around the rim of the sled, and stacked neatly on top of each other as not to hang over or in if possible. After a little tape measure time, it was time to start with my 2 side plates that the roof bows mount and pivot on.
 For this task, i chose a high quality aluminum product i've used for other projects, and is perfect for a Frahillbilly project. A retired "No Parking Any Time" street sign ! I don't know squat about aluminum, but this isn't a soft grade.  We do work for municipality vehicles for certain towns, and i got one when one of the guys stopped in our shop. Check with your local town garages. They may have some retired/damaged ones lying around and they'd probably sell you one or two cheap.

The sign is 12" wide, what i was looking for to help reduce overall flexing of the JetSled with this contraption attached, so i cut maybe 8" off the top and bottom of the sign. Then on the cut end, i put a 1", 90 degree flange that will be where the plate bolts to the rim of the Jet Sled. That left me a good sized plate with nice rounded edges. To keep from tearing up my Jet Sled, i also cut a couple 1" strips of the leftover sign to use as a backing plate under the rim. Then i drilled 4 holes, and mounted the plates using 1/4" hardware.
 Since the Jet Sled is molded plastic, it naturally tweaks a bit when released from it's mold and cools. The side plates weren't parallel after bolting them on, but a heat gun and a little persuasion fixed that.

(Image removed from quote.)

(Image removed from quote.)

The 4 roof bows are just plain old 1/2" conduit from Cheapo Depot. I broke out of Frahillbilly mode and borrowed a hand conduit bender from a guy at work (maybe 3 or 4' long, with a curved head). Never used one before, but i did pretty good measuring the length of the curve. I only porked one piece of conduit. With a couple tweaks, they were all nearly identical and ready for installing. Maybe i have a future as an electrician.

(Image removed from quote.)

 Measuring the length of each bow and it's mounting position was simply putting my sittin' pail in the back of the sled and starting with the one that sits on the ice and determines your "work space". Laid it out and marked on the plate and conduit where it needed to pivot, and where to cut the conduit.  The next one determines the height over my head, and the last two are for the cargo area. The lines on the plates are 1" apart and determine the spacing between the conduit when it's folded down, allowing space for the cover material in between.

(Image removed from quote.)


 Mounting hardware is still standard 1/4". Nut and bolt jammed to the side plate, with a flat washer on each side of the conduit, and then a nylon locknut to hold and allow free pivoting.

My next and final task for the framework is to get my roof bows to flip over and sit in their final positions so planning for the cover can begin. My bow that sits on the ice is my starting spot again. I set it down into position and tied a string to the center of the bow. Then i got on the sittin' pail again and got the overhead bow where i wanted it and tied it to the ice bow. Then repeat for the last two. The ice bow had enough leverage to hold the other 3 in place.

My next problem was figuring out how to anchor the overhead bow in place to hold the 2 rear bows up, plus give me an attach point for the ice bow when i don't want to be enclosed. Frabill uses those hooks, but my side plates are different. That problem was solved hillbilly style with a few bungee cords (with the coiled metal ends), more 1/4" hardware, and a little electrical tape.
With the bows folded over in fishin' position, i dug out that clear tube o' bungees i got from Cheapo Depot, and dug out the 3 lengths i needed that were close and set them aside.
My idea was to make a couple stop posts for each plate that my overhead bow would sit against, and use the bungees for tensioning and spacing. The stop post is just a 1/4" bolt with a locknut turned up enough to allow me to roll electrical tape between and act as a cushion (visible in previous pic).
After that i just tie a knot here and there until i have the right spacing between bows, and some tension. The last bungee is simply hooked over the rim of the Jet Sled.
To set up the shanty i simply flip it over me and then insert the stud into the plate and tighten the nut by hand, then let the bow rest back on them. It's a gloves off deal. No biggie for CT weather or anywhere really since it only takes 30 seconds at most to attach them.

(Image removed from quote.)

At this point, it's probably late November 2007 (i gotta look), and the framework is done. I'm pleased with the results. I have a solid frame that can be bolted to any Jet Sled. I'm probably retarded for not massaging it more and patenting the thing.

More to come...

nice set up bri!
hard core fanatic  Http:
http://timeanddate.com/s/1a9j

 



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