Putting an Eitz Chaim (Wooden Pole) on a Megillah


Although the common minhag is that we don’t attach an eitz chaim (wooden pole) to the megillah, many people ask me to put one one for them. The reason for this seems to be based on a gemara in Baba Basra 13b which says, “One who wishes to attach torah, neviim, and kesuvim into one scroll may do so, providing he leaves enough blank klaf at the beginning to wrap around the amud” Rashi says, “Amud refers to a wooden pole that the scroll is rolled on”. This was the minhag of the Ari and of the Gra. The Mishnas HaSofer writes that it is very appropriate to follow this minhag.

In the pictures you can see me and my son Zerach working on a project for one of my customers. He wanted an eitz chaim for his megillah but he also wanted a megillah case. Since the eitz chaim adds a great deal of height to the megillah, we had to find a huge megillah case. Even with the biggest case I was able to find, we had to modify the eitz chaim by shortening the handles. Actually since a normal eitz chaim has one short handle (for the top) and one long handle (for the bottom, so you can easily grasp it with your hand), we took two sets of eitz chaims, and gave one set two short handles and one set two long handles. Since the diameter of the case was too narrow for the eitz chaim, we sanded about an inch off of the eitz chaim with my Delta sander.

Yes, it was a great deal of work, but what won’t I do for my (paying) customers?