well I am waist deep in it now - Rehabbing Herters

so I bought a dozen of the big Herters Foam decoys, I think they are 72's at a sportmans auction in Delaware. They had been burlapped but had been run hard and put away somewhere nasty. I thought they just needed paint, but after powerwashing off the mud and crud, they had been shot a bunch, the burlap had worn through in places and the metal keels were rusting and leaving gaps.
So far I have rubbed in tile mastic where they were thin or had shot holes, and done mastic and burlap patches at the tails and where they were really bad.
I just poured in some West 3M epoxy on the keels.
Paint is next
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They are Model 81s - Mallard/Black heads on small Goose/Brant bodies. These were made popular by Zack Taylor - Boating Editor of Sports Afield and author of one of my favorite gunning books - Successful Waterfowling.

Herters 03 ZT Model 81 + 72 001.jpg

They make a fine oversize bird. I rehabbed a rig for a duckboats.net member several years ago - bodies came to me burlaped; I coated the heads with epoxy + sawdust.

Herters 05 Horning - primer in profile.jpg

Have fun!



Here are some Model 81 Brant I rehabbed for my gunning partner several years ago.

Kessler's Brant Rig - First Batch Profile.jpg

Here's the catalog page. Herter's made 2 heads: one for Canadas/Snows/Blue and for Brant.

Herters 58 page 14 Model 81 Goose inset.jpg

All the best,



Those Brant look beautiful, Steve!

Good luck with your rehab project, Lawrence. It should be fun. post up some shots of the finished birds.
I think I am done, just need to spray on some clear matte if I get a sort of warm day....I wont get to try them till January 20th. They started as really rough Herters 81's, all mallards. I saved 4 of the drakes and left them as Mallards, the other 8 became Blacks. They first got some tile mastic and I cut in some burlap patches, then paint. Thank You Steve Sanford. BTW Home Depot at least here wont do samples in flat exterior, just satin or interior gloss..IMG_7344.jpgIMG_7346.jpg
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I had about 2 dozen of the model 82's I turned some into Oldsquaw deeks.


Long black zipties work pretty good as tails.