3 Cheap Ways to Silence Tree Stands

3 Cheap Ways to Silence Tree Stands

With turkey season comfortably in the rearview, it's time to start hammering the checklist for the fall. I love dedicating these next few months to tackling gear tweaks, modifications, and adjustments. I review my notes from last fall to keep the necessary mods fresh in my mind. I record these changes in my phone from the stand throughout the season. It makes all the difference for fixing subtle squeaks and finding missed metal-on-metal contact points and loose parts.

Eliminating as much noise as possible in the gear we use is one of the most essential chores of mobile hunting. Let's look at some proven ways to keep your equipment quiet so you can stay on the move to get close this fall.

Hockey Tape

Hockey tape is the most versatile and durable material I've found at an affordable price. It offers excellent adhesive and forms well to virtually any frame. It's not the end-all for eliminating noise, but I use it for the broad, large coverage areas. It's textured, lightweight, and helps dampen those high pitch "tings" and "clangs" from buckles, releases, and other metal-to-metal contact points. Hockey tape also provides a bit of texture to any surface and adds a little extra grip for what otherwise would be just a slick metal surface. It is easily found in most sporting goods stores and, of course, online.

After a while, the tape works into itself, making it very durable and long-lasting. Apply it on the edge of the seat, where it folds up and meets the platform. Don't be afraid to get carried away with this stuff. Hockey tape is lightweight and versatile, and it’s fun to make these modifications.

Stealth Strips

I found Stealth Strips from Stealth Outdoors a few years ago. Essentially, it's fabric tape with a powerful adhesive. But don't take this stuff for granted; it's a game-changer when you're covering stand platforms, cables, climbing sticks, bow hangers, and any rigid surface. The ultra-durable micro suede fabric with strong adhesive doesn't wear off with heavy use and is water-resistant. It’s sold in multiple lengths and sizes, and you can cut and customize it to fit virtually any surface.

Stealth Strips also come in kits to fit specific brands of climbing sticks and stand features for perfect coverage. They significantly reduce any high-pitch noises that deer easily pick up. I use them on climbing sticks, strap buckles, stand cables, pack buckles, the shelf on my bow riser, and any other contact points that don't have an impact on the functionality of my gear.

Rubber Grip Tape

Some areas require a little more heavy-duty approach to cut down noise. Deadening moving joints like carabiners, buckles, and platform contact points is vital. These points seem to cause the worst headaches for a mobile approach because they're handled constantly. We are always tearing down and setting up, packing, and repacking. When in need of thicker, sound-deadening material, I use rubber grip tape in one of two forms; bicycle grip tape or baseball bat grip tape. Both get the job done, but I prefer the baseball bat grip tape if I had to pick one. It forms onto curved frames a little easier and holds its adhesive well.

While these materials are the most sound-deadening I’ve found so far, I don't blanket everything with it. The rubber grip tape can add some weight, so be mindful of how much you use if weight factors into your approach. It also gets worn more easily and loses its adhesive quicker than hockey tape or Stealth Strips.

These simple applications aren't bulletproof. They're a small insurance policy to help protect you from yourself. This realization came from a few painful mishaps over the years that are forever burned into my memory bank. You've done all your homework, poured over maps, scouted fresh sign, and waited for the conditions to be right. When the stakes get high and your nerves start to take over, mistakes can happen, and the attention to the little details matter most. Don't let a metal climbing stick buckle or an exposed, bare tree stand seat keep you from having the season of your dreams.

Feature image via Captured Creative.

Shop

Transfer Pack
Save this product
First Lite
$325.00
The Transfer Pack is the Whitetail hunter’s workhorse. Purposefully engineered to efficiently pack and unpack every piece of gear you’ll need in the woods, including a tree stand, climbing sticks, and your bow. The Transfer Pack's versatility is perfect for anyone hunting out of a saddle or a tree stand, as its bucket-style design and multiple hanging configurations allow the hunter complete access to extra stowed gear and accessories throughout...
Phantom Tree Saddle Kit
Save this product
Tethrd
$402.99
If you are looking for a nimble and effective way to hunt deer this fall, the Phantom Saddle Kit is the ticket!
Men's Wick Short Sleeve Crew
Save this product
First Lite
$70.00
Whether you're scouting before the season or find yourself in an early season heat wave, the Wick Short Sleeve Crew will keep you dry and comfortable.
Razor HD 4000 Laser Rangefinder
Save this product
Vortex Optics
$499.99
The angle compensated laser rangefinder features four targeting modes (Normal Mode, First Mode, Last Mode and Extended Laser Range Mode) for any ranging environment. The primary HCD (Horizontal Component Distance) range mode provides key angle compensated range information required by the vast majority of shooters in a simple, quick to read display. The Razor HD 4000 also has a LOS (Line of Sight) range mode and scan feature.
Get the latest in your inbox
Subscribe to our newsletters to receive regular emails with hand-picked content, gear recommendations, and special deals.
Our picks for the week's best content and gear
For the whitetail obsessed, with Mark Kenyon
Redefining our connection to food, with Danielle Prewett
Your one-stop for everything waterfowl, with Sean Weaver
Get out on the water with the MeatEater Fishing crew
Technical hunting apparel
Purpose-built accessories for hunting and fishing
Quality elk, turkey, waterfowl, and deer calls
Save this article