Transcript from Steve's Video:
Today we're going to look at the DT Systems BL-509 bird launchers. Bird launchers are mainly used by upland folks. There are some applications for retrievers but it's mainly an upland product. The idea behind a bird launcher is that it allows you to plant a training bird. Typically, it's going to be a quail or a pigeon. They have a larger size unit for pheasants, but most folks are using pigeons and then occasionally using quail.
The smaller model is designed for that type of bird. A little small for a chucker. If you are using chuckers I'd go with a bigger model. But for most of us it's pigeons and quail.
This is the model that's designed for that. The idea behind it is that you are going to be able to plant a bird. He's going to stay there. Can't go anywhere. When you get ready to launch him he's coming off the ground whether he wants to or not. So it's a really important tool in training pointing dog. It allows you a lot of control over what's going on.
You do need to be careful with them, especially with a younger dog. I don't like to use them with a dog until we've had some bird introductions and they are comfortable with birds. And then when you use them in the field, you want to make sure you know exactly where it is and that you have the timing down on releasing your bird, because the last thing you want to happen is for this to go off in the face of a young dog and scare him. That's the thing that we're trying to avoid the most.
One of the things I like about the DT is it's very quiet. We'll talk about that in a second. What you have here is a transmitter. This remote control will handle up to 16 launchers. Not really typical for most of us. Three or four is going to be the most that you need. Three for most people is going to be perfect.
Hold down your on button. Turn it on. You have a beeper locator. The beeper locator is designed to help you pick up the unit after you are through. Back in the day before they had this, you would set your launchers up. You'd work your dogs. And then you'd come back to pick them up and, occasionally, you wouldn't be able to find them. Once or twice I even had to go back to the truck and get a dog and have him come out and find them for me.
So, beeper locator is kind of handy. And even after you trigger the launcher, the beeper stays on so that once you are picking them up in the field, real easy to find.
To load, you have a couple of different ways. We're going to use this dummy as an example. You can take your bird, put him in on the top. Close down. And then set your launcher. Now we are ready to go. It's armed.
DT's have a feature, though, that no other bird launcher has. They have this little trap door on the side here. So, if you want to, you can set your launcher and then you can load it from the side. Some folks have trouble loading birds from the top and they will lose birds occasionally. And so, the little trap door is a good thing for folks.
You've also got a safety pin here. If you want to load it at your vehicle and then carry it out into the field loaded, you can do that. No fear of it going off while you're just walking out in the field. You want to make sure that you remove the safety pin. It will not fire with the safety pin in.
Once it's set up in the field, you set your transmitter to the correct level and launch. Not really designed for indoor use, but you get the idea.
One thing that you'll notice on that launch is that the unit was quiet and it did not jump. Older systems and poorly made systems have a tendency to move a lot. The reason that the DT does not move so much is because of the base. It's hard to show in a video, but you've got a lot of metal right here. And the idea behind that is to keep it in place. It makes it a little bit of a heavier launcher compared to some of them out there, but it's quiet and it doesn't jump. And so, that's a good thing.
This has been a really popular launcher. They work well. They hold up great. DT has done a really nice job on them and we've had a lot of luck with them. It's my favorite of what we sell. It just does really well. It's a neat system. For birddog folks it is a great training tool.