Good point SS. You wouldn't get a $50 operation, so why trust your life to a cheap piece of equipment? If you fall, you're going to break something (an arm if you're lucky), and trying to pack yourself out with an injury isn't worth saving $100. Ya' get what ya' pay for.
I would have to agree with the thoughts expressed before--a cheap price may seem like a deal when you buy it, but if you don't kill yourself, you'll probably regret it. I just started using a tree stand two years ago and bought a Summit Viper--it's a great stand.
Do yourself a favor, save your money until you can buy one good stand like a summitt, or API another well made stand. Dont try the cheap way when it comes to safety and hunting. The cheap stands are cheap for a reason.
I bought an API climber a few years ago and I am glad I didn't try a cheap knock off.
I agree with Drayton...Save up and get a "Good" stand.
I purchased an Old Man climber about three years ago and it is still as good as new and has never given me any trouble and is relatively comfortable when you sit in it for hours on end. Comfort is a big factor since I hunt a lot of public land and don't get much scouting in, got on a lease this year and loved it. I have had to pack in my stand up to 2 miles sometimes when I hunt the public land. I am not allowed to setup a fixed stand and leave it there for any amount of time so a ladder was out of the question.. not to mention a 21 lb climber ~vs~ a 70 ladder up and down hills and thru thick woods...not a good combo. I paid about $200 on sale at Bass Pro. I the down side is finding a somewhat straight tree to go up. I also like to be about 20 ft up.
If I were to ever to get a climbing stand, I certainly wouldn't scrimp! I'd hate to find out how cheaply one of those things were made 15'+ up a tree. A climbing/safety belt would definitely be in order when using one of those!! Good luck with whatever you decide.
Cabela's has been selling 15' ladder stands for $59.99 (Qty: 2+) for a couple of years now. That's the route I took. They break down for transport or storage and are easy to setup. I'm in the middle of converting one of them to 20', getting rid of the ladder brace, and adding a detachable shooting rail / camo skirt. Can't wait for season to start!
I didn't know that about cabelas. As a note, Dunn's here in MO is running a sale, seems to be directed at taking Bass Pro head on, they might have some better deals than BP, starts this Friday. I love competition!!
I use 2 stands myself. I agree you get what you pay for. Usually the lower priced stands weigh a lot more than the expensive stands. This means a lot if you are having to walk a good distance. I use the summit Viper for short hunts and the New Tree Lounge for extended hunts. The more comfortable stand to me means I can stay longer.
A belated welcome to some of you recent members. I hope you enjoy JHP. When buying a tree stand as with anything else just remember: The bitterness of poor quality outlasts the sweetness of a cheap price!
I think one of the best tips is to use a safety harness, even or especially when putting a stand up. I am a slow learner - fell twice. Both times when putting one up. Getting to feel those old injuries as I get older. I never start up a tree without my harness, installing or hunting. I have made a bunch of stands -shop teacher- from copying what is out there and bought some too. I use to use ladder I made until a big buck spotted one my buddy was using and backed out of the area - no shot. I guess we have learned a bunch and one thing is big bucks don't get that way from being careless. Good hunting.
I have a summit bushmaster. It is very easy to use. very quiet, and comfortable enough to hunt in all day. I actually have fallen asleep a few times and felt secure. the seat is very large compared to most hanging stands and is thick foam.