Author Topic: Debarking sugar maple?  (Read 370 times)

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Offline clewis

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Debarking sugar maple?
« on: September 08, 2019, 08:15:36 pm »
Anybody ever try a pressure washer on sugar maple? I have a 2200 psi pressure washer and does a good job removing bark and cambium from hhb, just wondering if anyone has tried it with maple.


Offline bjrogg

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #1 on: September 09, 2019, 05:45:19 am »
I haven't tried it on sugar maple, but I'm guessing it would work. Maybe try it on a scrap piece first.
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Offline Weylin

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #2 on: September 09, 2019, 06:20:57 pm »
can't imagine why it wouldn't work. I say go for it
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Offline PatM

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #3 on: September 09, 2019, 06:47:02 pm »
Sugar Maple does have quite different bark structure.  It seems like it might be a bit  tougher to get it started.

Offline Marc St Louis

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #4 on: September 09, 2019, 07:40:23 pm »
I don't know why you would want to.  The bark comes off easily enough
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Offline clewis

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #5 on: September 10, 2019, 07:53:44 pm »
I don't know why you would want to.  The bark comes off easily enough

So I've put about 1.5hrs into debarking each of these staves with a pocket knife and I'm not feeling it, knuckle is pretty scraped up as well. One stave I removed the bark to the cambium with a draw knife and the other I left the bark on. Any suggestions on how to remove the bark?   

Offline Marc St Louis

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #6 on: September 10, 2019, 08:58:26 pm »
I use a draw knife to remove the bulk of the bark then flip it and then use it as a scraper.  Takes me less than an hour per stave
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Offline clewis

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #7 on: September 10, 2019, 09:37:57 pm »
 So with that method youíre sure to violate back of the stave, so how much violation can the back tolerate? A closeup picture of the back of one of yours or anybodyís bows/staves would be really helpful. The growth rings are tight on my staves so if there a violation how much do I feather it out?

Thanks

Offline simk

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2019, 04:55:37 am »
Clewis: I used a power washer to debark fresh staves. That works fine.
For dried staves I suggest hot water or steam, especially for the cambium: The bark/cambium will just come off like on freshly harvested wood. After steam/hot water you will be able to remove the cambium with a strong brush very clean. Before you do that start with the draw knife, as suggested by Marc.
Cheers
« Last Edit: September 11, 2019, 05:16:51 am by simk »

Offline Santanasaur

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2019, 06:34:05 am »
Paul comstock mentions a good hot shower being enough to really loosen the bark. Itís still less of a hot mess to just use the drawknife.Im allergic to a lot of outer bark so Iíve tried it both ways and the drawknife involves almost no exposure of bark to my hands. If you use a splitting motion and kind of pull the cambium up you shouldnít  make a mistake, youíll only cut into wood if you use too much slicing. Donít slice if you canít see what youíre youíre slicing-especially over bumps and knots. I mainly just slice to set my knife in the fibers, then wedge and pull them out. Try to  keep the knife over a cushion of cambium and not bare wood. A sharp drawknife does all this with less effort but will make a mistake with less effort too.  When you have a thin coating of cambium left (starts to look translucent) then you can scrape it all off or just scrape a controlled pattern.

Offline Marc St Louis

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #10 on: September 11, 2019, 07:48:50 am »
So with that method youíre sure to violate back of the stave, so how much violation can the back tolerate? A closeup picture of the back of one of yours or anybodyís bows/staves would be really helpful. The growth rings are tight on my staves so if there a violation how much do I feather it out?

Thanks

I'm sure you could violate the back if you are clumsy
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Online bownarra

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #11 on: September 11, 2019, 08:05:44 am »
So with that method youíre sure to violate back of the stave, so how much violation can the back tolerate? A closeup picture of the back of one of yours or anybodyís bows/staves would be really helpful. The growth rings are tight on my staves so if there a violation how much do I feather it out?

Thanks

I'm sure you could violate the back if you are clumsy

Or just inexperienced maybe? Not everybody has been doing this for years ;)
Yes it would be easy enough to nick the back with a draw knife. Go slowly and carefully.
Most barks come off very easily when fresh cut and the sap is flowing. If that were the case here I'm sure you wouldn't be asking this question :)
Cutting in autumn/winter early spring will mean the bark is very well stuck to the wood. Also drying a stave with the bark on will lead to the same thing regardless of when it is cut.
So if the bark is stuck then remove as much of the bark as possible with a quick tool (drawknife) then go slowly as you get down in to the cambium layer. Use a scraper or the steam method from here. Steam is the way to go for ease. Your pressure washer may also work but go gently to start with.

If the bark is stuck

Offline clewis

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #12 on: September 11, 2019, 09:36:59 am »
Inexperienced yes, clumsy definitely! Iíve really only worked maple once before about 8-9 years ago and I donít remember it being this difficult. My last experience using a pocket knife it would come off in nice little 1-2Ē chips with some work. But this is just frustrating now. Iíll try the steam method and probably skip the draw knife. The good thing is I have 8 maple staves to work to keep me busy over the winter.

Thanks

Online DC

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Re: Debarking sugar maple?
« Reply #13 on: September 11, 2019, 10:11:33 am »
The outer layer of bark on most(if not all) trees is waterproof so for the steam/hot water to work well you really need to get the thin outer shell off first.

PS I have had no experience with Sugar Maple ;D
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