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#2538316 - 04/09/11 03:37 AM Wolf Snare Tutorial -9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor
Sleepycreek4.5 Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 4
Loc: SE Alaska
First I would like to say that I am by no stretch of the imagination a snare expert. I am the opposite. In fact I'm only about half way through construction of my first real arsenal. I have hit more than my share of hurdles and the learning curve at times didn't have much of a curve at all. Since I was unable to find all this info in one spot (in fact it came from threads, archives, pm's, emails,manuals, and telephone calls) I thought someone might benefit from my legwork if they were interested in duplicating some or all of my thread. I will admit that I may have done things incorrectly or made poor choices in different aspects. This is just a general construction, you can swap what you want.

And in no particular order I would like to thank Spek Jones, Takotna, HFT, nook sack, TJ, Northway, Family Trapper and anyone else that sent photos and answered my questions. I'm sure I'll have plenty more.


There seems to be two very distinct snare factions, those that love wire and those that hate it. I can see the reasons some would not like the wire. It is a little involved to install at the beginning and causes some headaches upon retrieval.

But I also think that it has distinct advantages and with Spek Jones ingenuity with the snap anchor, and a couple other innovations, it's nearly perfect.

The snares I made and am making are made of the following components:
3/32 1x19 cable
3/32 Thompson locks
Annealed nuts(two biggest sizes from snare shop)
1/8"x5/8" flat washers
#9 wire
#16 wire
1/4" snaps


The Wire

I cut the #9 to lengths to about 8 feet. By the time the ends were processed this left me with about seven feet of working wire on
the snare. I was getting about 22 snares out of a ten pound roll, so I'd cut the whole roll. With only one vise, I would do all the pigtails first and then switch the vise over for the snap end twist. To rehash for those that aren't familiar( there still are some ) the pigtail is used to provide an in-line swivel as well as facilitating a nice hang of your snare no matter the wire orientation. I found a bunch of 8"
nails that were just slightly bigger in diameter than the wire. (you might want a couple spares as there may be bending and scarring) Cut the head off with cable cutters. Place horizontal in vise about 3/8" from the top and crush vise down. Bend end of 9
wire into a 90. Figure about one wrap per inch of this tail. ( I was bending 8-9 inches over= 8-9 wraps) Place longer length in space
above nail. Attach vise grips to wire end.


Begin wrapping the wire around the nail holding an even pressure through the arc of the turn.( The longer end will pivot a bit above
the nail until it comes up against the vise. If it doesn't catch you may have to drop the nail lower.) This will give a nice tight even wrap. When you get to the end, I was using the vise grips to squeeze the last little bit as opposed to pinching and turning. This avoids the nail getting chewed up and bent by the grips. This was only a seven wrapper in the pic. I went with 8,9, or even 10. I felt I wanted a little more in case the crap hits the fan.



So what I was doing next was taking the vise grips and locking onto the nail tight up to pigtail. This will keep it from sliding in the next step. I never really saw this done before and I wondered how guys were getting their tails turned. This is what I came up with. Take
the long end out of the vise and slowly bend it straight up perpendicular to the pigtail. Slide a screw driver in between the vise and the pigtail. After you do one you will know how much space to leave there when you clamp the grips.


Now with your palm slowly push the length down toward the vise bending it smoothly over the screw driver. This lines the pigtail up with the rest of the wire as well as gives a nice flat seat for your washer. Leave the screwdriver there and release the grips. Use the grips to tap against the screwdriver to get the tail off the nail.




Set aside and move onto the next 20 or so.

Snap End

I was putting a twist end in my wire for the snaps as I couldn't get the wrap around method to look very good and I didn't like getting poked by the end. There was some debate on the strength of the twist and I was curious so I put it in a two ton hydraulic lift. The wire
broke first in three tests. Nothing scientific, but good enough for me. In fact I put the whole completed snare through the same test. The weak link was the pigtail. With no inline scale, I have no idea at the weight it began to unravel, but it was substantial. I ran two snares head to head though with different sized washers. The 5/8" outlasted the 7/16 every time. That's why I went with the wide guy.

To do the twist:

Bend end back 2 1/2 to 3 inches and place ends in vise.


Insert spike or long screwdriver and twist in smooth action holding tension away from vise. This will give nice even wraps.







Before you remove the twist from the vise, now is a good time to put on the snap, ID tags, and/or the SleepyCreek restraining device.
I had to do both at different times as I was waiting on an order from the snare shop on the first and hadn't yet invented the second.
(It's optional of course.) I clipped my ID tags on the snap loop and the restrainer is nothing more than an 18" or so piece of #16 wire
wrapped on the twist. The snare restrainer comes into play a little down the line so read on to see if you want it. There wire is wound tight enough to stay on the twist, but loose enough to swivel around. I also bent 1/8" back on itself on the free end. Dont like getting my hands poked and wanted to give my eye a fightin chance as i like to poke various things in them from time to time. Here's a pic though.




The Sleepy Creek Can

Now we are ready to coil. I MacGrubered up a paint can with a bolt tightened near the opening. As I said I didn't have my snaps yet so I just put the wire loop over the bolt and wrap the wire around the can. Actually works better with the snap.


So this is what you should have, but with snaps and other accouterments .



The Cable

I cut my cable at 75". And used the medium nut as a stop. Lay flat on a table and bend your lock cradle with needle nose plyers away from lay of cable. I was using a peg sticking out of the side of the hydraulic lift to load on. You will have to do your own research on loading, as that's a big ball of wax. I was doing a medium load getting a 22-23" loop when I put the lock on. Nice round circle. I had a pigtail wired to a jack that I would slide each snare into to check each for overall appearance and firing action. If they passed they moved onto a big pile, if not they got adjustments.


Bringing them together.

I'd slide a cable into the pigtail, put on a washer, and then for this stop I was using the large nuts from the snare shop. Initially this was because I ran out of the medium ones, but I kind of like the width it gave on the large washer so I went with those.

Now initially I was wrapping the snare cable around the coiled wire to contain everything. This sucks if you ask me. The snare end always wants to pop out and the wire may have weird wows in it that cause the whole thing to puff up to a couple inches thick. A complaint that I share with a "non wire" guy. And this wrapping and unwrapping the cable around the wire? It crazy and a PIA. The wolf manual says something about wrapping the 9 wire around the cable and it "springing out" ready to party. Whatever!

So this is where the Sleepy Creek restraint comes in. Once you have everything coiled up you just wrap the 16 wire around the close edge once and then go across to the far edge. This allows you to keep the cable on one plain without the winding and waste of time
and it will actually spring out. If your restraint is too long wrap the excess down the length of snare, if too short do the same at
the top.




This keeps everything nice and flat and only takes about two seconds to secure or deploy. And then when making a set just fold it up 3 or 4 times or wrap around the tree.


So here's a quarter of what I'm doing for now. You can get 70 snares in a roughneck tote, so 35-40 in a bucket. These are tied in groups of 5 and have been bathed in Coleman fuel. Need to be boiled and painted yet.



Field test in the back yard. Could have mashed the restraint down more. Actually bending it up like that works good when recouping. Just shove that in the can and it stays out of your way.





More field testing. Had the dog on the porch and waved a treat from the bottom of the stairs. Interesting discovery, on steep or trecherous ground they look at their feet. Milo is getting quite snare wary, but I got him on the old "stair/milk bone set".





























Edited by Sleepycreek4.5 (04/10/11 04:51 PM)
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#2538319 - 04/09/11 04:14 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
John7997 Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/30/10
Posts: 3
Loc: Alaska
Sleepy Creek,

Very nice....should ask to put that in the archives.....you use 8 inch nails...i was using a couple junk allen wrenches the same diameter as my wire. and the allen wrenc having a 90 degree turn kept it from moving around in the vise.

The #9 wire...FYI...If you ever see a chainlink fence being torn down...the fencing companies use #9 wire woven into the bottom of the chainlink fences to keep them from curling up....just a mention to get some FREE #9 wire if you keep your eyes open!!!

nice post
John

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#2538486 - 04/09/11 09:11 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
nooksack Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 196
Loc: ak
Nice work Matt, looking forward to the results next year.

Coiling the whole snare seems to always be a little wrestling match with a few and gets worse when you take them down for the year. However it is something you get used to. I will try the SC restraint on the uncooperative ones.

Thanks for the excellent post!

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#2538563 - 04/09/11 10:37 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
white17 Online   content

"General (Mr.Sunshine) Washington"

Registered: 03/17/07
Posts: 15060
Loc: McGrath, AK
Very nice ! We can archive it after everyone has asked all their questions and critiques. The one thing I believe that would add greatly to the value of the thread is a picture of Milo working the set.
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#2538579 - 04/09/11 10:50 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: white17]
mad_mike Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/01/08
Posts: 179
Loc: Podunk, Alaska
I like it! I had been carrying zip ties with me when picking up snares and traps. The SC restraining device as you show is much cleaner and quicker.

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#2538603 - 04/09/11 11:15 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
Top Jimmy Offline
"Assistant Speling Zcar"

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 4559
Loc: Alaska, USA
You have to have tags on your snares down there? I thought that was only a Juneau area thing?

Great post. You have really been working at this hard for a while now, and I can't wait to see some results next year.

As a side note, I think the dog is just getting even with you for using him as a test subject.

-TJ
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#2538634 - 04/09/11 12:00 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
nooksack Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 196
Loc: ak
Tie wire with a small bend is how I package my bundles and it makes it quick and easy to grab one snare and keep the others together. Then I can hang the wire on a branch to keep from getting the rest of the bundle wet with snow. When I finish a bundle I leave the tie wire in the tree the last snare is hung from and hopefully I find it when I pick them up. I know you being a com. fish guy have a thing with ganion ha ha. Would be curious to know how others do it also.


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#2538665 - 04/09/11 12:55 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: nooksack]
Sleepycreek4.5 Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 4
Loc: SE Alaska
Nooksack-that looks very handy! Good trick. I would do that too if I could make it through the brush without hanging up.

I do have a love affair with gangions though! Right now I have a shoe with a gangion lace, a gangion belt, the tarp over the skiff is tied with them and my daughters middle name is gangion...just kidding... It got vetoed.

The plan is to boil, dry, and paint, hang for a couple months, then store in the tote with some cedar dust and spruce boughs. Then I will place them into clean buckets next year for setting.
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#2538838 - 04/09/11 05:09 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
Moses Offline
trapper

Registered: 10/22/07
Posts: 162
Loc: Shaktoolik, Alaska
good info and pics sc... was wondering, tried boiling the snaps in baking soda an water to take the shine away or would that make it harder to open and close once dried? or maybe even speed dip or painting it white?

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#2538944 - 04/09/11 06:52 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Moses]
mad_mike Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/01/08
Posts: 179
Loc: Podunk, Alaska
My snaps work fine after boiling with baking soda.

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#2539122 - 04/09/11 08:59 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: mad_mike]
Sleepycreek4.5 Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 4
Loc: SE Alaska
I ended up speed dipping the whole works black. Like Mad Mike said, the snaps aren't compromised doing any ofnthese things.
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#2539247 - 04/09/11 10:55 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
drasselt Offline
trapper

Registered: 05/17/10
Posts: 36
Loc: Alaska
Nooksac nice heat shield. whistle


Edited by drasselt (04/10/11 10:03 AM)

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#2539319 - 04/10/11 04:00 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
Family Trapper Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 2089
Loc: Homer, Alaska
Awesome thread SC. Sure looking forward to your ventures next season. My son Garrity also was nearly a Ganion. I love the stuff also. Everyone should have a bundle of ganion in their pack. I have remnants of it in a lot of places also.
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Passion- There are some people who live in a dream world, and their are some who face reality; and then there are those who turn one into the other.

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#2539542 - 04/10/11 11:08 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
nooksack Offline
trapper

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 196
Loc: ak
Thanks Tom, I was just trying to add a little class to the place,

For those of us without the ganion fettish you can just wrap the wire once around to make it more secure.

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#2539646 - 04/10/11 01:39 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
Spek Jones Offline
"FATHER"

Registered: 01/10/09
Posts: 812
Loc: Homer, Alaska
Sleepycreek, I wish I had half of your energy, you're really going to town
on the snares. Good thread. Thanks for your generosity with the kind words.
One thing I want to mention again, for anyone planning to saw the locks, the
standard 3/32nds locks are too weak for the big wolves. (they'll be fine if you're not cutting them). I've done some testing and have found out that
by hacksawing the 7/64ths Thompson locks and then hammering the cut shut real tight you can reduce the size of the holes in the lock to about the same size holes as a stock 3/32nds and they will work (lock) on the 3/32nds cable. So I'm swapping all the locks on my snares over to 7/64ths for next
winter. Won't know for sure how well they perform until they're field tested. If anyone else has already been doing this maybe we can get some feedback? (Field testing this sort of stuff is a long and slow process).

I prefer to hand roll the wire rather than wind it on a bucket. I make about a 12" circle with the wire and then just flip the cable around it a few times. Put them in bunches of one dozen and place in a garbage bag to help keep them clean and dry. One 2" peice of 14 guage wire wrapped once around
the snare (just wrapped, not twisted) holds the loop from popping out the side of the circle. Then grab how ever many I think I'll need out of a bag to set up a spot, or take a whole bag depending on the size of the location.
When pulling them I don't worry with the 14 tie wire. Takes too much time,
just pull them and stuff in a bag. I sort through them later at the shop and check them over and tie wire the loops for next season. But, whatever works,
everybody has their own way. When you're setting or pulling a lot of them though any little thing to speed things up is a bonus.

A weak solution of muratic acid works pretty well for dulling the snaps.
doesn't take much. Just put the snaps in plastic bowl or bucket, pour in a gallon or so of water THEN pour in a cup or so of muratic acid. You can watch the acid take off the plating. I don't let it take it all off, just
kinda knock the worst of the shine off a bit. If you take it all off I think rusting will be a problem, but just a few minutes in the acid helps a lot.
I'm not even sure that a person has to do anything to them if you're anchoring high, since it's above their line sight, but they may twinkle from a distance on a moonlight night or sunny day. Easy to place a twig or leaf over them if a person is worried about. But the baking soda works too, just
need to re boil them in clean water with a few spruce bows in it after the soda treatment.
Matt, are you going to weld the pigtails, or just take a chance on them?

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#2539831 - 04/10/11 04:29 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Spek Jones]
Sleepycreek4.5 Offline
trapper

Registered: 01/23/11
Posts: 4
Loc: SE Alaska
Spek-Good point on the locks for those in moose heavy area. Don't plan to do anything more to these snares. I was under the impression this set up would most likely hold up to a moose. Don't really have the numbers of moose, so I figured this would be adequate.
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#2539895 - 04/10/11 05:39 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
Spek Jones Offline
"FATHER"

Registered: 01/10/09
Posts: 812
Loc: Homer, Alaska
Yeah, if your moose catches are very minimal I think you'll be fine.
Moose will occasionally pull out the pigtail, as I suspect the biggest of the big wolves will as well. Not sure what the dynamics are but some of the pigtails with the same number of wraps seem to hold better than others, maybe varying hardness of the wire (not sure on that).

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#4770043 - 11/30/14 03:34 AM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
AKtoejam Offline
trapper

Registered: 11/17/13
Posts: 1
Loc: North Pole Alaska
I like the thread. I've been trapping wolves for several years now and I prefer to use the 7/64 1/19 cable with a Thompson lock that I moose proof by cutting the lock. I started out making wolf snares with the pigtail but later found that it was just too time consuming. The design of a pigtail is so that the cable doesn't get twisted up then a wolf gets caught but when you have 5-8 feet of #9 gage wire and 74" of cable, the total length of stretch out makes it almost impossible for the snare not to get caught up on other trees or brush there for making the pigtail inoperable. If you are anchored to a single tree with no other obstructions in the way it then would work great but for those guys out there that trap wolves you know that just doesn't happen to often. To save time on making my snares I just use a double farrel to attach my #9 gage wire to my cable. I leave about one inch of #9 sticking past my crimp so that I can bend it back on itself creating a loop so that if the double farrel was to ever slip it would stop it for doing so. Don't get me wrong I like the idea of using pigtails but for saving time try using the double farrels. Like I said the cable ends up getting rapped up on other trees or brush and twists up anyways. I've caught many wolves using this type of set up and haven't lost one yet do to the constrution of the snare. Good luck to all my trapping brothers and sisters out there. Have a great and productive season.

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#4770762 - 11/30/14 03:05 PM Re: Wolf Snare Tutorial-9 Wire/Pigtail/Snap Anchor [Re: Sleepycreek4.5]
Kusko Offline
"Mr. Mayor"

Registered: 12/23/06
Posts: 3768
Loc: Bethel, AK
Spek, you should post pictures of your snap locks with your wolf snares.
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