How to Build Stone Crab Traps

 
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In the Florida Keys there is nothing more rewarding than being self-sufficient on the water. As full-time residents for 6 months we decided it was time to build and deploy stone crab traps for ourselves. Since we were new to the process we put together a blog post with our own instructions and videos. After some research, we found the simplest way to complete the process. To watch us build our traps click here or continue scrolling to read!

We purchased our traps from Cudjoe Sales where you can buy a “kit” of 5 traps complete with directions. Note: you must buy your own concrete (2x60lb bags per kit).

 What you need:

  • Stone Crab trap kit from Cudjoe Sales

  • 2x60 lb bags of concrete

  • Drill with phillips drill bit

  • Cardboard, wax paper, or plywood

 How To: Build the Trap

1. After opening the box, organize like components for easier assembling.

2. Screw in wood chew out into window of window panel.

3. Slide all 4 sides together ensuring that ribs are at bottom and face inward (square cutouts on top). Smooth sides facing in and grooves facing out.

1. Side with wooden chew out window  2, Side with square tops facing out/up  3. Side with no square tops  4. Side with square tops facing out/up

1. Side with wooden chew out window

2, Side with square tops facing out/up

3. Side with no square tops

4. Side with square tops facing out/up

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4. Place lid on and screw in crab funnel/throat.

5. Slide hinges into cut out on lid. Screw on hinges. Be sure your lid can swing open and closed.

6. Screw on latches on the opposite side of the hinges. Leave room for latches to swing in either direction.

7. Place trap on cardboard, wax paper, or plywood.

8. Mix concrete following manufacturer instructions (2x60lb bags per kit)

9. Open lid to trap and pour concrete filling to the top of the bottom slat (around 2 inches).

10. Tamp concrete firmly into slats and corners.

11. Allow concrete to cure based on manufacturer instructions.

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How To: Line & Buoy

  1. Cut and burn line into 5 segments of desired length (depending on water depth for traps).

  2. Attach line to traps using a bowline or knot of choice.

  3. Slide weight halfway down the line and tie an overhand knot.

  4. Near the top of the line tie an overhand knot and slide buoy on. Tie second overhand knot above buoy.

  5. Label buoy with the letter “R” for recreational.

  6. Be sure to permanently affix name and address onto each trap. We used a label maker and epoxy.

 How To: Deploy the Trap

  1. Bait traps with fish carcasses, pigs feet, chicken thighs, etc.

  2. Deploy traps at a depth of choice in a single line for easier pulling. Be sure not to drop traps in busy channel.

Next week, we will upload a blog on deploying and pulling our traps!

xoxo,

The Gale Force Twins

Here some additional videos that helped us build our traps: