Name: Rick Larnerd
Address: RR #5 Box 105 A; Montrose, PA 18801
Phone: 570-934-2130 Fax:
Personal Website:

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 Gobbler Knob Calls

Rick Larnerd was fortunate to grow up (late 60’s) in the small town of Birchardville PA. In this rural area, hunting and fishing were as common as going to the store; guns and shooting were an accepted activity as sacred as the Holy Grail, and schools close for opening day of deer season, a tradition which still takes place today. Few people remember these times, but for Rick this was a way of life. It wasn’t until the mid 80’s that Rick would depart this hometown and serve in the US Army as an Infantryman. After 4 years of service to his country he returned and was accepted into the Ross Leffler School of Conservation to become a Wildlife Conservation Officer. Since then he has been promoted to Law Enforcement Supervisor and now resides in his hometown of Birchardville where he will retire from the Pennsylvania Game Commission in approximately 8 years.

Ricks interest in turkey hunting started when he shoot his first gobbler at age 13. He has been hooked ever since. Although he has hunted a variety of wild game, he will tell you nothing compares to the great wild turkey. In fact, deer, which use to be one of his passions, is now a distant 2nd. Each spring Rick can often be found in the woods with one of his handcrafted Pennsylvania Long rifles that he also builds in his spare time. All in all sharing this love of turkey hunting with his children has become a number one priority for Rick. Fortunately his children also share the same zeal and passion for it as he did when he was a child.

Interest in callmaking came about as he looked for some type of hobby/work that could keep him busy when he retires. Studying a turkey call he had recently purchased he thought to himself “this couldn’t be that hard” and off to the shop he went. Soon after word spread and customers or in Rick’s case friends began inquiring about his calls. In 2001 he sold his first call, which was made of cherry. The call sounded ok but Rick knew he could do better so he began searching for information that would help him perfect his skills. His searches lead him to two websites, one being Custom Calls Online and the other the Boxcall Page. The wealth of knowledge contained on these sites was a tremendous asset for a beginning callmaker.

What originally started out as a part time hobby has now escalated into a full-time job. This of course is a job he is pleased to be tasked with. Rick can often be found spending time in the shop looking for and working with woods with unique characteristics, something that is a key component in his calls. When making calls his primary focus is on building something that encompasses the look and style of a collector-grade piece. Nothing is more satisfying than selling a call that is breathtaking but also excellent sounding. Paying attention to details is a habit he picked up when he trained as a police officer. It is this eye toward detail that has aided him in his callmaking efforts.

As Ricks callmaking began to excel he knew it would be a matter of time before he would need a name for his calls. Most callmakers use a name that suggests their calls are the best for luring a gobbler to the gun. Instead, Rick decided to approach it from a different angle. His approach was to name calls that would conjure up visions of early Americana, since this was where turkey hunting began. Currently there are 5 models offered.

“Gobbler Knob Original” (Basically, a call made from any species of wood he uses with a turkey head profile on the handle. This is a signature mark of Gobbler Knob calls).

“Appalachian” (Built from black walnut & curly maple, both species common throughout Appalachia, an area steeped in a rich turkey hunting history).

“Americana” (Built from American Chestnut recovered from a turn of the Century church which was being razed. Rick views this species of wood as being the premier species for building box calls. He also believes it is the epitome of America, hence the name.)

“Fencepost” (Built from Black Locust, which is known for its use as fencepost material. Its unique color and density make for a very nice call)

“Staghorn” (Built from Staghorn Sumac, which was used by Native Americans and the early settlers to make spiles for tapping maple trees when making syrup. This species of Sumac occurs only in the Northeastern United States. What makes it special and unique is that it very rarely gets large enough to fashion anything from its wood. Rick was extremely fortunate to locate a log and had some planks sawn. Its figure and coloration are breathtaking. Supply is limited and these calls will be for special occasions only.)

Gobbler Knobs Calls is the official name that Rick builds his calls under. He provides both collector grade as well as field grade calls. His perfection for producing a quality turkey sound can be heard in both types of calls. Current production is between 20 – 50 calls each year, with those numbers increasing as he becomes known within the callmaking community. For those looking to find Ricks calls in callmaking contests you won’t. However, his calls are entered into numerous contests each spring. There is only one qualified judge in this contest and that is the wild gobbler and from the feedback Rick receives from customers, his calls receive blue ribbons across the board.

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