How do the smackdown and bullpen compare in terms of durability and sturdiness? How about the shack attack- sturdy, well made, but enough for 2 with one shooting a bow? I'm going to check out the new ones with the "one directional material" as soon as I can put my hands on one.
If I get a good one my main criterion is that it's well made and will last a while. Cheap blinds tend to not make it more that a year or two for me and are a waste. If there is a different product/company I should be looking at with well built/sturdy being it's most endearing quality, I'm all ears.
I do not use it much anymore since I usually chase them with a decoy, which is more fun, but it is well made and has held up......
I would not hesitate to buy the shack attack,,,,,, I bought a original Double Bull T2, at a trad shoot for 150.00 with the bag carrier,,,,, it is the best in quality, and very quick to set up, and I really like that,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,,
My friends have used, the Rhino Blind, and I looked at that, that was well made, and tough, but not sure if they are around anymore,,,,, For the money I see no issues with the Ameristep, as long as they are taken care of, and put up properly.......
I have found that with all hub style blinds, regardless of make, and instructions, by marking your center hub, and putting that up first, and then pushing out the sides, the hub system, takes less stress,,,, when taking down, reverse it, by pulling the center hub down, and then the sides and flipping over your head............. Pulling them out from the outside, causes stress on the hub system as a whole.......
Want to have some fun? Go buy a Ultimate Predator Decoy, attach it to your bow, and go hunt...................... good luck
I have an older 360 Matrix that has seen better days. The fabric is basically at the dry rot stage and has stretched a good bit. I'm seriously considering the ShackAttack for the new one, or possibly one of the new models for 2018.
You asked about some of the newer ones though. I have either owned or hunted out of several of the different Wide Mouth/Double Wide/Deluxe variants of the Dark Horse. In general, I don't like them. I hate the large door, as it is very difficult to seal out the exterior light. I also do not like the hubs ... they are huge and weigh a ton. They add a lot of weight to what was a moderate weighing Dark Horse design. I bought one of the Smack Downs a year or so ago because I found a "deal". It was a terrible blind. Cheaply made, a pain to put up, and overall junk. I returned it. I also currently own a Shack Attack. Overall, I really kind of like this blind. It is a cross between a T2 and a Dark Horse. However, the Shack Attack uses the heavier giant hubs like the Wide Mouth blinds use. It isn't too bad since there are only two hubs in this blind. As to the new "one way" see through blind, I have my doubts. My concern is that it lets in too much outside light for turkeys to keep the interior black enough and it lets out too much scent for deer.
As to other options, I bought three Xenek blinds last spring. They are pretty nice. Overall, I really like their front window, even better than the Dark Horse. There are parts of the blind that need to be improved though. The exterior has a sheen to it that I think flairs turkeys from my experiences (though I did manage to kill a bird out of one last spring). I ended up using ultra flat spray paints to dust the blind and take the sheen off. Also, since the height dimension is greater than the width dimension, setup and tear down has to be done in an exact sequence and even then can be tricky. I don't like trying to sneak in and set up an Xenek blind in the dark. I cannot do it quietly like I can one of my Dark Horse blinds. But all in all the Xenek is a very nice blind.
What is so magical about the T5? Everyone sure seems to miss it! I don't think I've ever heard of someone who didn't think it was a really great blind. You'd think Primos would figure that out and respond accordingly.
When it come to filming hunts, the Dark Horse is the best that I have found. But if I didn't film hunts, I'd go with a T5 every day of the week.
I just can't justify the $399 for a handful of turkey hunts a year and I leave my blind in the woods to be destroyed by nature.