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Older model climber tree stands

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Older model climber tree stands

Old 01-01-2017, 07:23 PM
Typical Buck
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Originally Posted by ChasinTail
Are they pretty safe?

I just got a rivers edge climber from one of my buddies. It looks really old and is metal around the back not cables like the newer ones. I climbed a little ways up a light pile in my yard and man it just doesn't feel safe. Anything I can do to make it better?

I'll try to upload a picture tomorrow and see if you guys have ever used one like it. Would there be any problem with only going up 8 feet or so in the tree and hunting out of it?
If it's welded together get it in the brightest light you have and look in craters at the end of each weld for cracks. If you find cracks, it's trash. No cracks, it's good as new.
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Old 01-02-2017, 04:18 AM
Nontypical Buck
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My brother has a old baker the 18"x18" platform one. He bought it cheap from his boss who had bought it and just had to try it out at home on a POWER POLE. Went up about 15 feet and was turning around when it started to slip, he grabbed the pole and slid down with the climber spent a good amount of time in ER having slivers removed from belly and chest.

First thing my brother did was to sharpen the metal plate at the tree gripping part of the stand. Never had a problem in probably 20 years of using it.
I my self didn't care for high places so bought the bigger 24"x36" platform model baker. I also sharpened the metal griper plate on it. I still own it and do use it every so often still. Never had a problem with it in 40 years that was not my doing.
On the Bakers they recommended you keep your weight near the front of the platform so the gripper plate would grab the tree good.
I almost always used mine in Popple trees can't get much smoother bark that that.

These are the plates you should sharpen.


Last edited by alleyyooper; 01-02-2017 at 04:28 AM.
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Old 01-02-2017, 05:42 AM
Nontypical Buck
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Default Trouble with older treestands...

There no instructions, usually, available. Have a 20 year old stand that fits me. But it only holds 250 total lbs, too light for some modern hunters.
Seems there are fewer 180 lb. hunters, fit enough to climb a tree.
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Old 01-02-2017, 05:47 AM
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Back when the Baker tree stands first came out, a lot of guys looked at them and and saw how simple they were and decided to build their own. I worked at a power plant at the time and over lunch period a lot of guys would be in the maintenance shop building their Baker stands, Lots of those guys wound up with "baker chest and arms" from going down a tree a lot faster than they climbed up. I hunted on the ground then and I didn't consider those stands safe. Of course, that was before safety harness as well.
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Old 01-02-2017, 02:20 PM
Dominant Buck
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I had a Baker and never fell with it but climbing with it was a real gut buster...I'm talking hernia in the making. Mine is still sitting in a pine tree at camp and is now part of the tree. My summit is far and away a better and safer stand. Like was said use a safety harness and stay attached all the way up and down. I don't think I would elect to use old technology.
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Old 01-02-2017, 03:47 PM
Typical Buck
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I built and used those old Baker styles a lot back in the day. Made them for the most part with a welder and angle iron.

Only time I ever had one fall, I was already on the ground watching my buddy climb down with one. He was bear hugging the tree and climbing and at the point of standing on the stand to regrip and dropped something he was holding behind the tree while climbing. That hit the back that was gripping and everything and every body just started down like you cut the cable on an elevator. Dropped about 10 feet and the bite in back hooked up again and came to an immediate stop. He was still standing there kinda not really gripping the tree and everthing was exactly the same only 10 feet lower. Every thing but the look on his face and that was totally white, just long enough for us both to take a breath and start laughing. What else could you do? It was the ultimate test on the stand integrity, nothing broke.
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Old 01-02-2017, 08:18 PM
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I had a friend with a home made baker stand in the late 70's. I was only about 11 or 12 at the time I tried to use it. I very slowly and deliberately managed to get it maybe 10 feet up and then very slowly and carefully came right back down. I immediately made the decision it was too much trouble. I didn't even consider using a climber again until about 20 years ago when I bought one of the original Ol Man climbers. The Ol Man is the climber that caused me to think it was workable. I still never thought it was perfect though. I bought the Summit Goliath several years ago, and I am impressed with it every time I use it. I'm wondering how much better climbers can get. I'm still waiting for a safe quick descent feature for when nature calls.

I think today's young hunters owe much to the test pilots of the early years who were not afraid to lose a nipple.

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Old 01-03-2017, 02:42 AM
Nontypical Buck
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My baker and my brothers both came with a safety harness. Two really crude 2 inch wide braided nylon strap you fed thru a release type buckle. One for around the tree and one around the waist there was a D type ring that connected the two belts. Yup crude compared to todays harnesses but could have saved a bad injury, Hope if you used it and fell some one would come get you down before the belt cut you in half.

I got good at doing chin ups going up and down the trees with that baker. I was in my 20's then.

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Old 01-03-2017, 11:57 AM
Nontypical Buck
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You shouldn't take this part of hunting for granted. Get rid of it and invest in a new Summit or other quality climber. One fall and your life could be changed forever!!
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