Birch-Tappers Dream - A Scotch-Eyed Auger and Belt Sheath

shep

Maker
Mar 22, 2007
930
1
Suffolk
Hi folks,
The last lot of augers were shipped today (after a lovely snowy bimble across country into the village).

Cheers.
 

Mikey P

Full Member
Nov 22, 2003
2,252
6
49
Glasgow, Scotland
Arrived today - really pleased and very good quality of workmanship on both auger and case. Many thanks for doing a second lot; much appreciated.
 

helixpteron

Native
Mar 16, 2008
1,469
0
UK
Although I have no use for one, I have to say that it looks a lovely bit of kit, and that sheath really sets it off well.

Come spring, there will be a happy band of tappers augering away.
 

Peter_t

Native
Oct 13, 2007
1,353
0
East Sussex
just a question, why are they so long?
to get at the sap you only need to go just underneeth the bark. you dont gain anything from drilling deeper and it will allow any rot quick access to the centre of a tree.

pete
 

shep

Maker
Mar 22, 2007
930
1
Suffolk
just a question, why are they so long?
to get at the sap you only need to go just underneeth the bark. you dont gain anything from drilling deeper and it will allow any rot quick access to the centre of a tree.

pete
These are actually the shortest ones I've ever found. They're usually around 2' long so that you can drill down on something with your weight while standing. It's not the length that matters, it's how you use it.;)
 

Mikey P

Full Member
Nov 22, 2003
2,252
6
49
Glasgow, Scotland
Regarding some of the comments above, from my biology knowledge, I know that we are trying to tap the phloem (carry sap/nutrients) rather than the xylem (carry water), and both are relatively close to the surface of the tree.

Does anyone have some sensible advice on where to tap (height above ground level, etc) and how deep to go? Are there any features (boles, knots, buttresses) that would help in deciding the tap point?

I have also seen Ray Mears and others either carve a wooden plug or use mud to fill the hole after use. Any comments?
 

bert333

Full Member
Jan 15, 2008
697
5
Earth- for awhile longer...
I tap mine a couple of feet off the ground-
The use a branch from the same tree to make the plug- to avoid any possible disease - it needs be a good tight fit ( due to the pressure of the rising sap ) which I hammer in with the back of my GSFA, then saw off any bit that still pokes out.
I don't think the 'fill with mud' is a good idea- it will leave the tree vulnerable and the 'mud' will be washed away by the rising sap which will continue to be lost thereby hurting the tree. Depth around 1 to 2 " approx
I stand to be corrected if anyone knows better.
 

Peter_t

Native
Oct 13, 2007
1,353
0
East Sussex
the phloem is a very thin layer just inside the bark. if you were to peel the bark of a living tree (DON'T) you would be holding the phloem in your hand, it is connected to the inside of the bark, thats how thin it is. anything deeper than that is xylem, basicly xylem vessals is what wood is made of. sapwood is active xylem and heatwood is inactive xylem. so to collect sap all you have to do is make a hole in the bark.

plugging the hole is probably the best way to prevent infection (it wont garentee to stop it). cut it flush to the trunk and try not to damage the bark with the saw. after a cupple of years the tree will grow over it.

sorry but i do know alot about trees :eek: lol

pete
 

sandbender

Mod
Mod
Nov 29, 2004
7,808
7
Scotland
plugging the hole is probably the best way to prevent infection (it wont garentee to stop it). cut it flush to the trunk and try not to damage the bark with the saw. after a cupple of years the tree will grow over it.
This probably deserves a post all of its own Peter, thanks for the info :)

My Auger and sheath has arrived in Scotland, it'll take a while before the relay system I have in place gets it out here, however hopefully it'll turn up before spring.

Thanks again shep

:beerchug: