I decided to throw together a family sized insulated ice fishing house this year. The plan was late so the objectives were as follows. Cost was a factor, time to build, weight and room to fish at least 5 comfortably.
I came up with a simple plan on a budget that took me just a little better than a weekend to build.
Floor plan called for 6 fishing doors in the floor that gave each person there own block of space that was 4' by 4' to sit in & fish 2 holes.
Here's what the floor layout looks like.
view from bottom side showing framework.
this floor was sheeted top & bottom with 1 ĹĒ high density foam board insulation in the middle.
The walls were framed of 2x2 lumber with the inside of the walls sheeted with 1/4" plywood. Walls were then attached to the outsides of the floor system so the entire floor size was maintained which is 8 ft wide by 16 ft in length.
Ceiling/roof is flat, full 8' walls with 2x4's as roof stringers spaced at 24" on center same as the wall studs.
The entire exterior of the house was then spray foam insulated with an expanding urethane foam. Pretty ugly on the outside but decent on the inside & pretty light weight in the end for it's size.
Here are a couple of pictures of the outside.
then the inside
still some work to do. I need to mount a heater inside, I also need to finish the walls in the inside by fastening 1x2 firring strips over every row of screws on the walls, I think this will make the inside look a little nicer & it will ad strength sandwiching the sheeting to the studs from the inside.
our plan is to pull it out on Lake of the Woods in northern MN on thursday this week.
My buddy won a shack a few years back valued at $30,000. He also won a wheeler to pull it with. Some deal on a radio station in the Cities a while back.
The inside was furnished with cherry wood cabinets and floors. bathroom, counters, the whole works. I don't know if he ever sold it or not, but he was asking $15,000 for it. He doesn't even ice fish. He kept the wheeler and trailer because he does hunt.
That is one SWEET shack, i imagine you buy the foam insulation in bulk, Do you need a special sprayer to apply it??? Also do you get alot of snow at lake of the woods??? Did you use any kind of skids on the bottom??? Thanks
It fits on a single axle snowmobile trailer, 8x10 bed on that trailer. Weight wise itís fine for the trailer, but size wise it hangs over the trailer bed in the front & the back. The trailer is a tilt bed so it makes it easy for loading & unloading. If I had a power winch it would be very easy loading, but I currently drag it up on the bed with a hand cable winch (come along).
To get it off the trailer we prep the resting spot by shoveling an area the size of the house, then we park the trailer over that spot, tilt the bed, anchor the house & drive the trailer out from under it.
To anchor the house I drill a fishing hole behind the house with the power auger & drop in a heavy iron hook into the hole on a log chain, I hook up the chain to the end of the house & sheís anchored solid for pulling the house out from under it.
The house also has some very low skids under it, I have (3) green treated 2x4 skids under it with the 2x4ís laying flat. The idea being to keep the house as low to the ice as possible.
It's out there on the frozen lake now up on blocks to keep it from freezing to the ice.
I think I'll move it a little this week & get it ready for some saturday fishing. Maybe go out friday after work, move it, re-drill holes, turn the heat on & leave it so it's ready to fish first thing saturday morning for us.
Something to think about; if you have any discount building supply stores near by - they might have some vinyl siding that is discontinued, 2nds, blemished,etc. that you could put on the outside to protect the foam and it might not cost you a lot of $jack$. Plus, it shouldn't be all that heavy. Just a thought.
I noticed its sitting on or real close to the ice ,if you leave it out you might want to block it up ,if that big boy freezes down you are in for a lot of work ,I had an 8x8 and when it froze in I would take my floor jack and spud a hole at one end of the shack and slip jack under it, and apply a lot of pressure and wait a while and it would usually pop right up ,Looks like a lot of fun ,I have since moved to portable shacks as I like to move around if they aint biting in one spot
I,d rather be LOST in the woods than FOUND in the City
Good lookin' Walleye! The ice around here seldom gets thick enough to walk on, let alone do something like that. Ice fishing kinda interests me though. I bought a magazine about it the other night and have been showing the pics to my two kids and telling them that's how y'all do it up there. Very nice building.
That's nicer than anything I've ever laid eyes on......gotta love time on the ice in there. Now all you need is a satalite dish and big screen and you're all set!!
You'd be amazed at what people rig up to their shacks.
If I get a chance this weekend, I'll try to take a picture of the little "shanty town" in one of our fishing holes. A wide varitey of shacks. Dave's would be by far the nicest, but they all have "character".
here I'll update with catch of the week pics from.. about a week & a half ago.
catch of the day was a buck brand asisted opening clip knife, "rush" model that I dropped down the fishing hole a week earlier. i was just sick about losing that knife. I caught it with a shop magnet that i use for welding.
Great pics and lovely kids. Dunno if they're all yours or not, but they are wonderful children nonetheless. Nice walleye too.
The ice fishing house sure looks desolate in that pic. That's just how I imagine it being down too far south for such as that.
well the 3 biger kids in the last picture aint mine, well the one on the left kind of is, we'd take ownership any day of the week good kid, my cousin's boy. His dad passed away about 1 year & a half ago & we've enjoyed spending more time now than ever with him & his 2 sisters not pictured. the 2 boys with him are his friends, he brings a buddy or 2 up sometimes when he comes to visit. Always good kids.
Originally Posted by Lawdwaz
Nice job! How thick is that ice?
well i varries but I'd guess anywhere from 2' at the thinnest to well over 3' in places.
Hey everybody. I'm lofting this old thread to the top again for another ice fishing season with upgrades to the house we built last year.
The house worked out great for us last year with the only complaint being that it was tough to move around with the wooden runners I had under it. I broke those runners in several places last year, they just wouldn't hold up to the force it takes to break a house free from it's spot when it's time to move a big house like that.
So, I put together a new steel skid frame for the house that should slide nicer & should definately hold up better to the abuse out on the lake.
here are a couple of crappy phone pics I snapped last night out in the shop. (excuse the mess )
here's the skid, it's upside down in the picture here. it will carry the 8' x 16' house soon.
here's a shot from an underside corner where & rolled these heavy hoops with 1/2" sq cold rolled steel & welded them on for tow points. one on all 4 corners.
Ontario, Dave. And to be more specific, I'm jealous of your house, compared to my little ol' Frabill.
O.K., jealous of the 'eyes too.
But I am surprised about the flasher thing. I always considered you the high tech-red neck. And attatching the walls to the side of the floor, instead of on top of the floor...that one's got me scratching my head too.
Have you named that big heifer yet? A unit like that deserves a name.
well the wall thing.... I guess the thought was to try & get more box strength by going in from the side instead of fastening the bottom plate straight down like one might do normaly. It put the screws (plenty of them) in shear rather than tension plus it gave me a full true inside dimension of 8' x 16'.
Howdy Mark, we've had nice ice making temps but an uncommon early snowfall that lay on the ground up here like a blanket of blown fiberglass insulation.
What frost had started setting into the ground has thawed under the snow. I have heard that the snow for the most part has blown off the big lake but I don't exactly have my finger on the pulse of the ice fishing thing quite yet. My obsession with white tail has kept me pretty busy. To this point I have refused to concede to the deer, one week of muzzle loader season left and I'm beginning to consider hanging it up early. Itís been many years since I have gone a season completely deerless but it looks like thatís how itís going to be this year.
Sauger don't get as big as walleye so generally speaking your saugers are smaller. but you can catch an odd sauger that dwarfs your "keeper" walleyes for the day too.
Sauger will have spotted webbing on the dorsal fins & no white patch on the lower tail fin corner.
Saugeye... well they are tough & the DNR doesn't recognize them when counting limits. It's one or the other (walleye or sauger) and they are going to call it in the favor of the fine they would like to collect from you
Yankees is such a harsh word to some of us, and ND is a good guy..
He is far enough north that I refer to him a "Pseudo-Canadian".......eh?
My wife is from Idaho. Shortly after we started dating (I met her when she was a flight attendant) we had the same discussion and she felt that the word Yankee was a little harsh for her since that put her in the same class as NYC yahoos. The term "Western Yankee" was then termed so there was some level of distinction
Sure did lol!! We were out cruising cross country last night in the tucker. I had an electrical issue, it wasn't charging. I fixed that yesterday by rewiring the voltage regulator, now it's charging perfectly. We took that thing to some places you wouldn't take a snowmobile!! Freekin thing is unstoppable! I love it!!
Years ago, my SIL and I fished one of my honey holes in May at Stockton Lake for walleye. We were casting WiggleWarts into the pea gravel banks. One 18" keeper all morning, but way over a dozen in the 17-17 3/4" range. Makes you cry to throw back those fish. We went back to the truck for lunch and visited with a guy that said that the new limit was 15". HELLO!
Walleye fishing is very different in different parts of the country. I fished in a few parts of Michigan, & Minnesota (East, West, and Southern LOW, Upper Red, & some local lakes around Twin Cities, and Fergus Falls). I was VERY surprised when I seen what was considered a "Keeper" when I first started fishing Minnesota. Once when fishing LOW before the slot limit was started, I spent a day throwing back every fish I caught under 15", as I naturally thought that that was a reasonable limit (I was suprised that at the time there was no size limit !!). I never took home any fish from there, as we get all the walleyes we want here at home. I gave all my walleyes to the local guys that were my fishing partners. When they seen I had thrown all those good eating 12" to 15" fish back, they were none to pleased with me!! Here at home we consider a 19" fish fairly small. A very average size in Eastern Lake Erie, and lake Ontario is 21 to 25". An 8 or 9 pound walleye doesn't even turn a head to look at it around here. Where we fish, the water is at least 50 to 120' deep. Walleyes don't have much chance of living when pulled up from much deeper than 40 or 50 feet. It's fairly common for 2 guys to bring home 40 to 50 pounds of walleyes for a days fishing. I went out with a couple friends last June out of Barcelona NY, and the 3 of us could legally bring home 15 fish. The 70 quart cooler was overfilled when we had 12 fish, and 2 ice bottles in the cooler, so we quit. They recently raised the limit on the NY side of Erie from 4 to 5 walleyes, and from 4 to 6 on the Canadian side because of the increase numbers of available fish. 9 and 10 pounders are not uncommon in Erie, and 15 pounders come out of Ontario all the time. In the walleye contest they have here in Western NY they pay the top 200 fish. You better have close to 10 pounds if you hope to win anything. It's just bigger water, with a lot more food for the walleyes in it.
It doesn't make the fishing any better in any one place just because of the size of the fish. I love to drive to Minnesota, just to fish with friends. And the type of fishing we do for the walleyes (mostly jigging) can be a lot more fun than trolling for the big fish on Erie...
But they all sure taste good !!
And if anyone tells you that big walleyes don't taste as good as small ones, your talking to someone that doesn't know how to clean big fish !!
10 pounds 9 ounces
Typical 4 fish limit (limit is now 5)
10 pounds 2 oz.
two 4 fish limits, holding a 13 pound 4 oz. walleye Total fish weight 52.5 pounds
How can you not love fishing !!!!
Old Fishermen never die, we just get reel tired.
May you build a ladder to the stars and climb on every rung. May you stay......Forever young
I'll have to admit it's fun when you find a 10+ pound Walleye on your line. They try to stay glued to the bottom right up until their about right under your boat in about 60 to 85 feet of water. THEN the fight begins!!
I'm no better than any other average walleye fishing nut at this end of Lake Erie. Any summer day when the waves are 4' or under, there's an army of us out there trying our best to drown as many worms as possible!
We do a lot of perching also. The perch fishing is great, and a limit of 50 isn't hard to get if you know what your doing in the spring and the fall.
Right during the best fishing this last November I had a bit of an emergency and had to go in the hospital for 5 days. My buddy and I limited the day before, and I had the boat all hooked up and set to go in the morning. While in the hospital my buddy couldn't resist calling and rubbing it in how great the fishing was. 3 guys in the boat, the first 50 fish they only kept fish over 9". After that they only kept over 10" fish, and boated 86 more !! At that point I really hated that hospital !!
The last few days I've been installing a new Minn Kota Terrova 80 W/i-Pilot on the boat, & tying up some perch rigs, and worm harnesses. I can't wait for spring to get here (and I haven't even been out on the ice for perch yet, but will this weekend). I love getting out on the boat. Some of the brighter colored harnesses below I tied up to try on lake trout on Lake Ontario this summer. I do best on "Watermellon" harnesses for walleyes.
Like I said, most of our fishing is daytime trolling deep water. That's when you pick up the bigger fish. One of my favorite things to do here though, is troll shallow water reefs at night. It is super productive most of the time (I have limited 6 fish in Canadian water in 52 minutes !!) but the fish generally run smaller at 4 to 7 pounds. It's a lot like jigging for them, because your always holding the fishing rod in your hands and you always feel the hits. Sometimes they'll hit your plug 2 or 3 times and get off before finialy hooking up, and that's exciting when it's a bigger fish !!
Here's that 70 quart box of 12 fish we brought in last July. It weighed up at 26 1/4 pounds of skinless fillets.
Dave, You would be more than welcome to come and fish with us here. There's ALWAYS room in the boat for a Minnesotan, but ya gotta promise to leave the Lutefisk home !
A few years ago were fishing out of Arnesen's Rocky Point Resort in 2 of their overnight shantys. I was with 7 of my friends from Minnesota. To be initiated into the "Finn's Clan", they insisted that I ate an entire package of Lutefisk.
I still don't know if it was worth it...
Even after that though, we had a lot of fun there..
Now the group stays at Walsh's Bay Store Camp on Oak Island at the NW Angle. It's a great place, but I haven't made it up in a couple years. I spent a lot of money on a new John Deere Tractor, and a New Boat (Starcraft 196), so the wallet is in the deflated state right now.
we keep the ones that go between 1.5 and maybe 6 pounds to eat and throw back most the bigger ones unless we decided we are gonna put it on the wall.....course if we aint catching chit all day and pull in a 10 pounder that SOB is going on the grill
A serious student of the "Armchair Safari" always looking for Africa/Asia hunting books
If we remember the camera we'll post up some new pics.
Campfire member colorado1135 is coming up to fish with me and my oldest boy today. We have some lake house towing to do tonight with the tracked rig and tomorrow we'll use said tracked rig to trek across no mans land to the walleye slaying grounds.
Someone could end up with a trophy Walleye tomorrow, hate to jinx it but it could happen, I'm feelin it...
Wow... I've never seen a "house" that big for ice fishing. Congrats.
Did you guys have much of an ice fishing season this year? We barely got several inches of snow this whole winter in IL and the temperatures haven't been low enough for thick enough ice. I don't think I have seen one person ice fish this year which is very unusual in my ten plus years living in this state.
Well, I'm bumping this thread to report some changes to the hard water fishing equipment.
We've made an upgrade to our ice fishing house.
Old foamy is being replaced with this.
The house is 8'x20' with a V front so 24' total. It's in the lowered position in the picture above. With the turn of the lift cranks on each side and also the tongue it raises itself up onto it's wheels.
I think deer is going to be fine around DL, not sure about birds. Up this way the fighter jet type chickens had a good hatch (sharp tail and hungarians). I'm not sure about the timber chickens. Our deer around camp seem to be making a bit of a comeback now that the TB war on deer is over (crossing fingers).
We had such an early spring and a nice summer, I'm not sure on the ruffed grouse hatch but I can't think of why it would have been down.
that can be a problem. We usually lower the houses onto some blocking to keep it off the ice a little. Or, with a house like this one you can lower it right onto the ice while you are out there fishing (with the house heat on). then before you leave you can crank it up onto it's wheels so the frame is off the ice.