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I had a friend ask what kind of taps (aka spiles) that I’m using as they’re not the normal ones he’s seen in photos before.

 

For reference, a standard spile for hanging buckets looks like this:

 

 

I’ve found in the little time I’ve been using those that they were hard to seal up correctly and didn’t last long.  The thin aluminum (I’m assuming that’s what they’re made out of) bends far too easily, so even when you gently tapped it in, the top would bend and deform.  I’d see sap leak out around the tap most of the time too.   While I still have many of these taps and do use them, I’ve been switching over to a steel tap made by a company called Sap Meister.

 

I don’t believe they sell direct and I purchase from a supplier online.  They look like this:

 

 

They use a 5/15 hole, seal up very nice and are extremely sturdy due to the thickness of the stainless steel.  The downside?  They’re horribly expensive.  25 of these will set you back over $90.00

The upside?  They’ll last you forever.  At the end of the season you just boil them in hot water, dry them, and then store them for the next season.  Very simple.

 

I use a slightly different model of theirs for my tubing.

 

They also make a nice slide tool for installing and removing these.

 

 

The back is weighted and slides back and forth working in the exact same motion as an automotive body puller for fixing dents.  I used this for both installing and removing the taps at the end of the season.  Simple and no hassle.

 

 

One of my sap buckets using these taps.

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