Safety First

I’ve started to review the kit for Apple Day.  It’s all looking good so far, but I have a lingering concern about the scratting arrangements.

If you were there last year, you’ll remember that we adapted an old garden chipper with a long safety tube to keep fingers away from those whizzing blades (see picture below).  All good, but the problem was the need to poke the apples with a stick or garden cane when they got stuck.  Effective in getting the scratting going again, but a bit dangerous and at least one volunteer got hit with a flying splinter (thankfully only in the hand – but still, ouch!)

The easy way of solving this problem would be to buy a purpose built machine for scratting apples.  They’re pretty expensive though – the cheapest is the Fruit Shark at £420.  I got the sense that Dr Janey wasn’t terribly keen on this…

So I’ve been tinkering in the garden and come up with a purpose built tamp.

It fits nice and snug into the feeder and doesn’t get torn up by the blades because its dead flat.  I haven’t tried it with the safety tube fitted (I need to make a new one of those first), but I think it’ll work.

Safety first!


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