So this year I finally decided to hack our Christmas tree stand so I could use a power tool to secure it. I have no idea why I didn’t do it sooner. In any case, I finally had my fill of painstakingly twisting the L-style bolts into the base of the stand. I was dead-set on improving the way this stand worked. This year would be different. This year I’d use a power tool to make that Christmas tree stand impact driver ready. Never again would I suffer under the poor design of America’s (old school) tree stand standard!
This hack worked, by the way…read on to see exactly how to do it yourself.
Hacking the Christmas Tree Stand – The Details
- Supplies: Eight (8) 1/4″ x 5″ hex tap (fully threaded) bolts (zinc plated, or stainless if you can find them)
- Tool: You favorite impact driver with a 7/16″ socket
- Time: 5-15 minutes
- Cost: Around $4
Make That Christmas Tree Stand Impact Driver Ready
I’d go into vast and excessively descriptive details about what to do next to make that Christmas tree stand impact driver ready, but I think it’s fairly obvious. On L-style bolts, you simply remove them and replace them with the new 1/4″ x 5″ hex taps, being sure to seat them partially—readying them for being fully seated into the tree.
With other types of bolts, like fancier eyebolt systems, you may need to cut or saw through the bolts in order to remove them. Trust me, it’s worth it.
Once you have the new bolts inserted, you can replace any plastic end caps designed to cushion the tree from having the bolts sink into the wood, however, I’ve found that this is really not an issue—and certainly not worth any effort to reclaim the caps or deal with the hassle. Taking the impact driver I rough-seated the stand onto the tree outside the house and then brought it in, letting my wife hold it upright as I sank the bolts into place. If you overdrive the bolts, just back them out or compensate with the opposite side.
The result? You get a tree stand that lets you use your power tool instead of your fingers. You can’t beat it and, in all honesty, this is how they should all be built-in my opinion.