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Heat up your decoy spread with Greenhead Gear’s Hot Buy Goose Shells.

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Date: 9/25/12
Manufacturer: Greenhead Gear
Category Decoys

 

Total Score: 7.8 Good

Introduction: When it comes to decoys, Greenhead gear is one of the most realistic on the market. Their Hot Buy Canada goose shells are no exception. Although, decoy shells are not made to be the most realistic decoy, they are a great way to really beef up your spread without taking a toll on your wallet.

Greenhead Gear Hot Buy Goose Shells

Type Canada Goose Shells
Size L 21.5” W 11.5” H 6”
Weight Approx. 1lb each
Head Styles 2 Semi-Active, 4 Resters, 6 Feeders
Features six 18″ motion stakes
MSRP $139.99  One Dozen
Without the heads attached, six bodies stack easily on top of each other to conserve space

Without the heads attached, six bodies stack easily on top of each other to conserve space

First Impressions: When I took these decoys out of the box I was very impressed with the attention to detail that was put into them.  Not only was the feather detail very realistic on the bodies, but the jet black flocking on the heads was the icing on the cake. One of the biggest advantages of using shells is being able to pack a lot of decoys in a small amount of space. The decoy bodies stack well, up to six per stack, anymore and the top decoy begins to flare out too much.

Avery's twist and lock design for the head attachment

Avery’s twist and lock design for the head attachment

Like many of Avery’s full body and other shell decoys, they decided to stay with their twist lock head attachment design. This design is a very simple concept; but in this case we discovered, that after the heads had gone through the molding process, there was excess plastic remaining on the studs of the inserts. Because of this, the heads were difficult to install. To get the heads to go on more smoothly, we had to take a knife and shave away the unwanted plastic and flocking from overspray.

These shells give the appearance of being a full body decoy when put to the test

These shells give the appearance of being a full body decoy when put to the test

Field Test: We could not wait to get these decoys out in the field to see if we could kill some birds, using a spread of decoys that did not break the bank.  These decoys also came with six 18” motion stakes, which we chose not to use on this particular hunt because the short grass deemed them unnecessary. Had we been hunting a cut cornfield or a field with higher stubble they would have come in handy.

Up close feather and paint detail

Up close feather and paint detail

Despite a few stubborn head installs, set up was a breeze. Although, these decoys are not oversized, like most on the market today, they did not seem to be lacking anything. Once they were placed in the field it was hard to distinguish them from a spread of resting full bodies. The texture from the feather detail gave a very soft reflection in the sunlight.

Results from an early season goose hunt with our dozen Hot Buy Decoys

Results from an early season goose hunt with our dozen Hot Buy Decoys

These dozen decoys worked great on one of our early season goose hunts. Though there were not many birds flying, the few groups we saw cooperated beautifully, coming into the Hot Buys without hesitation.

One of the dozen heads broke off trying to take it off

One of the dozen heads broke off trying to take it off

Durability: As we mentioned earlier the heads are too tight of a fit, and we proved this when taking them apart after the hunt. As you can see in the picture above, while disassembling the decoys one of the heads broke off inside the body. As for the paints durability, some people have said over the years that they had issues with Greenhead Gears paint chipping. These decoys seem to have a fairly durable paint job. They passed the fingernail scratch test, and after a few hunts they are holding up just fine.

Birdseye view of the back detail

Birdseye view of the back detail

Greenhead Gear Hot Buy Goose Shells (?/10)

Quality

The overall quality is ok, with the head attachment being the weak point

5.5

Price

A very competitive price for a dozen decoys with flocked heads

9.5

Performance

As shown the decoys were effective

9

Design

Life-size decoys that stack well for easy storage

7

Total Score:

7.8

 

                        Positives                                                                     Negatives
Very affordable  Durability in the head attachment design
Lifelike detail  Some people frown on life size decoys

Lightweight and easy to store

 

Conclusion: We were very pleased with these decoys. While the heads are a little temperamental the decoys in general are a great value. At $140 a dozen or $11.60 per decoy, hunters can really get the most bang for their buck.  These decoys are great for someone looking to start goose hunting or for someone looking to bulk up their spread with some cheap but quality filler decoys.