Getting Your Box Call Ready
I used to be meticulous about prepping my hunting and fishing gear. Every gun would be cleaned and ready a week before the season, every rod rigged the night before. But with the onset of the life changes that catch up to most of us, I’ve gotten lax. I can, however, manage to make time to get that indispensable piece of turkey hunting equipment ready: the call.
My favorite call is the box. I use a Quaker Boy Boat Paddle Field Grade and A Sweet Cedar. For me, using a box call is like riding a bike- once you learn you never forget. It may take a moment to regain the finite feel of things, but only a moment. I am by no means an expert caller but I can give myself an advantage by making sure my call is properly sanded and chalked.
I prefer a fine sandpaper though some like to go as heavy as medium-grit. Lightly sand the narrow edges of the lip. Then flip the call over to sand the underside of the lid. For all box call sanding gentle pressure is plenty. I like to blow off the residual dust though I don’t know that it makes any difference.
A soft chalk works best and special chalk can be bought in most any shop that carries hunting gear for a low price. Realistically, though, any chalk will work. Give the underside of the lid a thorough coat. Cover the full length and width and rub it on fairly heavy. Make a few yelps on both sides of the lip to even out the sound. This should do it.
Carry your chalk with you, in small case (if you bought actual “call chalk” it should have come in a case). An old case from a mouth call works well. Cut a piece of sandpaper small enough to fit in the same case. Nothing ruins a turkey hunt like needing to tune up your call and not being able to do anything about it!