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Why Don't My Friction Calls Always Work Early in the Morning?

littletroubleshooterI love running friction calls, but they often seem to slip or squeak early in the morning. What's the deal? What can I do? — Wade Leese, Titus, Ala.

The culprit is that darned early-morning humidity and the resulting condensation. It changes the interaction — that is, the friction — between pot and peg, often leaving you with a squeaky or otherwise inoperable call. The call will function fine a couple of hours later, after things dry off, but it might be frustrating at fly-down time.

First, try a pre-emptive strike, and make sure your call and striker are perfectly conditioned the night before you hunt. Use light sandpaper or a scrub pad to clean the call and striker surface of any gunk or debris. Then, make sure to remove any resulting
dust, too. A call in tip-top shape will work better during moist mornings.

Second, switch to a waterproof striker, whether it’s a synthetic model or one of the great new weatherproof-tipped models. That way, you’re taking moisture out of the equation and also throwing another sound at a gobbler.

The third fix is a cop-out, and admittedly, the one I use most often. I go with the friction call least affected by early-morning moisture — a slate. After the sun rises and the
dew is gone, I can whip out my favorite glass and aluminum calls and ring yelps across the countryside. But for soft tree yelps and tree clucks during moist early mornings, the slate is my go-to call.

— Brian Lovett

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