Intro: Reclined Tree Stand Seat
Hunting is a sport enjoyed by many people. It is one that requires you to sit motionless for hours, waiting patiently for a prize buck to wander into your cross hairs. However, if you've ever sat in one spot long enough, you've probably endured that annoying, incessant pain in your glutes that comes with sitting for a long period of time. Sometimes it can be hard to motivate yourself to sit for more than two hours at a time. The cramping sensation in your posterior is, in my best guess, due to the constant tension of your legs pushing against the foot rest. In any case, an inclined seat helps to relieve some of this tension, and allows you to sit for longer periods of time. The great thing about this little project is that it takes very little time and money to make. Plus, you know, it's downright comfy!
Step 1: The Body
I was able to make this seat entirely out of scrap wood, as I suggest you do as well. Wood is a great material to work with, but it will eventually rot (hopefully not for a few years) so there's no reason to get fancy when it's going to sit through months of rain and snow. Its also advisable to store it someplace inside during the rest of the year, though it is not necessary.
To begin, start with a piece of 3/4 inch ply wood. From it, cut two rectangular pieces of the same size. Put the two pieces together width-wise and screw them together at a 90 degree angle. On the piece where the screw heads are visible, be sure to drill pilot holes wider than the screws' threads . This technique allows the screws to pull the two pieces together as tight as possible.
Be aware that when the legs are put in and the seat is angled back, it will sit lower and stick out more (just like a real reclining chair), so make sure to compensate for this when deciding the measurements for your seat.
When that is done, drill some holes where the two pieces meet to allow rain water to drain out.
Step 2: The Legs
Next are the legs. As mentioned before, the legs are what angle the seat back. It is important to know that the more you angle it, the more of the seat will stick out, and the less of it will sit on the platform of the tree stand.
To cut the legs to your desired angle, place a chunk of 2x4 against the side of the seat, angle the seat backward, and draw a line underneath on the 2x4 (see picture for details). Once you cut them out, the legs should be screwed in through the top of the seat. Again, it is important to use the pilot hole technique, and it is also important to sink the screw heads into the wood a bit so they don't catch on your clothing. This can be done easily by taking a large drill bit and drilling about 1/8 inch deep.
Step 3: The Arms
At this point, if you tried to lean back in the seat, the screws would snap right off. The arms, which are made of 2x4s, are added to strengthen the seat. Draw the angles the same way as before (see picture for details). Once the arms have been cut, screw them in through the bottom and back of the seat, again using pilot holes. Make sure the seat maintains an angle of 90 degrees or greater. Anything less will be uncomfortable to sit in.
Step 4: Haul Line
A large hole should be drilled into the top of the back rest. Since all tree stands SHOULD include a haul line for pulling up your rifle, the hole is drilled to utilize your haul line.
Step 5: Attaching the Seat
Finally, drill two smaller holes to the left and right of the big hole. These allow you to zip tie your seat to the tree stand. If you find that the legs are uneven, the zip ties should stop the seat from rocking and making unwanted noise. This is where it is most important to get your measurements right. You need to make the top of your back rest nearly level with the bar so that you can use the zip ties. (see picture for details)
If everything else is is in order, then your last step is to add some padding. Personally, I found that the cushion that came with my two-seat tree stand works perfectly if I fold it vertically over the seat.
If you already have a really comfy tree stand, then I guess this instructable won't do you any good, but for those who don't, do what works best for you. Try different styles to fit your needs and your tree stand. Hopefully, this little project will make your hunting experience a little more enjoyable. Don't forget to vote for me in the "Survival Ready" and "Live off the Land" contests. Thanks a lot and enjoy.