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Thread: To throw ice away or not ?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Central Vt
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    393

    Default To throw ice away or not ?

    Ok, so it's cold here and I have lots of ice , in buckets, pans, storage containers of sap. Popular idea is to chuck the ice and the remaining liquid will be the more concentrated sap. My question : is this true ?

    I hate to be throwing sap away since I don't boil alot, but I also hate wasting wood to melt ice if it's got no sugar in it.

    Was there any scientific test done to prove either way ?

    Thanks !
    31 Taps in 2011 with buckets, Barrel evap
    45+ Taps for 2012 with buckets, 2x5 Dryer Arch with steel pans ! 8x11 Sugar Shack, Dump Stations,
    60 Taps for 2013- Insulated Dryer arch, AUF,
    2014 watched from sidelines...
    70 Taps for 2015 - dryer arch, new 2x5 divided pan from Smokey Lake with a float box !
    70 Taps for 2016 - added a preheater and new grates for the Dryerator.
    80 Taps for 2018 - Dryer arch got new front and door

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Lyman, NH
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    2,311

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    Drink some of the sap and you will notice how sweet is. I chuck my ice as there's not enough sugar to waste wood on. It's the poor man's RO. Course, if the whole bucket is frozen solid I wouldn't, but I try to avoid that.
    2012: Probably 750 gravity taps and 50 buckets.

    600 gal stainless milk tank.
    2 - 100 gallon stock tanks
    one 30 gal barrel
    50 buckets

    3' x 10' Waterloo Raised Flue wood fired evaporator w/ open pans.

    12" x 20" Filter Canner

    Sawmill next to sugarhouse solves my sugarwood problem

    Gather with GMC 3500 2wd Pickup w/ 425 gallon Plastic Tank.

    Been tapping here in Lyman NH since 1989 but I've been sugaring since 8 years old in 1968.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Adirondacks
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    2,785

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    We recently tested this theory. We took enough solid ice off and let it melt. added the now unfrozen "water" to the hydro cup and with the sap hydrometer measured the brix. It was exactly 2%.
    FIRST GENERATION SUGARMAKER
    First boil 2/22/2012! Went Pefect!
    3,500' of laterals
    1,000' of mainline
    2012 - 105 taps on gravity, 12 sap sacks.
    2013 - 175 taps on gravity, 25 on sacks = 200 taps for 2013! Second year.
    2014 - 250 taps on gravity, 25 on sacks
    Tapped on February 16, 2014
    2015 - adding vac sap puller no more gravity for me!
    275 gallon holding tank for 2014
    20'x30' Sugarhouse

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
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    NE PA
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    Dr Perkins posted something about this just a week or two ago. He cited research that concluded that there was enough sugar content in frozen sap to make it worth processing.

    Personally, I would never toss ice, For one, I don't usually get enough sap to be that wasteful. And logically, to think that sap ice contains no sugar just makes no sense to me. The fact that if temps get low enough whole buckets of sap will freeze kind of blows the theory that only water freezes off sap, to my mind at least.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Eden Prairie, MN
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    Ice around the rim and top of a bucket will have nearly no sugar in it. If a bucket freezes nearly to the center then sugar is being frozen on the inner edge. As it thaws, sometimes the outer edges will thaw first releasing mostly water and leaving some of the more concentrated stuff locked in ice.

    Once a bag has frozen solid we don't throw out the ice. Clearly all the sugar is still in there! If it is partially frozen, then the ice along the edges can be thrown away.
    John
    2x8 Smokylake drop flue with AOF/ AUF
    180 taps on sacks
    75 on 3/16 tubing with shurflo
    Eden Prairie, Minnesota

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Central Vt
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    Default

    Whew, I have thrown some away, but mostly I have been using it. I found the note from Dr. Perkins and will keep it from now on. If I get buried in sap I may have to chuck some since I don't have enought storage or wood to do it all anyway, but for now I am keeping up boiling a few hours each night. Guess I need to ... upgrade
    31 Taps in 2011 with buckets, Barrel evap
    45+ Taps for 2012 with buckets, 2x5 Dryer Arch with steel pans ! 8x11 Sugar Shack, Dump Stations,
    60 Taps for 2013- Insulated Dryer arch, AUF,
    2014 watched from sidelines...
    70 Taps for 2015 - dryer arch, new 2x5 divided pan from Smokey Lake with a float box !
    70 Taps for 2016 - added a preheater and new grates for the Dryerator.
    80 Taps for 2018 - Dryer arch got new front and door

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Middlesex Vermont
    Posts
    649

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    Well you are not alone with frozen sap I have 50 buckets either full or 3/4 full frozen solid as a rock and two large holding tanks frozen solid. When the weather starts to warm tomorrow my holding tanks have some capacity left but 2/3 of the buckets are full and frozen this has been a tough spring so far but rest of week looks great once thise freeze breaks.
    110 taps W.F Mason 2x3 and two turkey friers for finishing

    2011 expanding to a Mason 2x4 with a blower increasing taps to about 200
    2011 Hurricane Irene rips thru my small sugar bush cost me to lose 20% of taps
    2014 I have reworked my lines for 2014
    32 taps on 5/16 line with check valves
    57 taps on 3/16 line with check valves
    55 buckets with total tapped trees of 144

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Live: Rideau Lakes. Tap: Beckwith. Ontario.
    Posts
    110

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    I just picked up a sap hydrometer last weekend. My 20 gallon test bin with ice formed on top and sides had the liquid sap @ +/- 3.5% with the thawed ice sap measuring @ +/- 1.25%. We have always boiled down our ice but I may rethink now.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
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    Eden Prairie, MN
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    Exactly, Drew!

    If you value your time and fuel, think about tossing out the ice on the edge of the bucket. If you want every possible drop of syrup, melt and boil it all.


    25 gallons of the freeze concentrated sap to get a gallon of syrup. 2.5 hours to get a gallon if SmokeyAmber's barrel evaporator boils at 10gph.

    69 gallons or nearly 7 hours to get the gallon out of the ice, not including the time and energy to melt it.

    It is all about priorities.
    John
    2x8 Smokylake drop flue with AOF/ AUF
    180 taps on sacks
    75 on 3/16 tubing with shurflo
    Eden Prairie, Minnesota

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Central Vt
    Posts
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    steve J, Bet you are loving the mud this year in Middlesex... I managed to get my buckets mostly empty, problem is my collection buckets froze solid !

    Sounds better for later in week. Gotta go cut some more wood ( dead standing stuff... ) or I will run out of it just when I need it.

    In Middlesex, Vt waiting on the sap.
    31 Taps in 2011 with buckets, Barrel evap
    45+ Taps for 2012 with buckets, 2x5 Dryer Arch with steel pans ! 8x11 Sugar Shack, Dump Stations,
    60 Taps for 2013- Insulated Dryer arch, AUF,
    2014 watched from sidelines...
    70 Taps for 2015 - dryer arch, new 2x5 divided pan from Smokey Lake with a float box !
    70 Taps for 2016 - added a preheater and new grates for the Dryerator.
    80 Taps for 2018 - Dryer arch got new front and door

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