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Thread: When to stop collecting?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    17

    Question When to stop collecting?

    So...a bit of a newbie question. When should I stop collecting sap. We started out small this year with 1 tap. Yes, 1 tap! The goal is 1 quart of syrup, so we figured collect 10-gallons. It turns out that its taking about 50 gal to 1 this year for the local maple folks. No worries though. It's the 1st year with expansion planned for next year! I know they say to stop collecting when the tree buds. Will the sap stop flowing at that point? Could you just go by the weather always staying above freezing instead? Just curious. We have about 12 gallons of sap right now and this week looks primo for some big production days! It's actually kinda good starting this small. You pay attention to every last detail...since you have the time...so we're learning a great deal. We're freezing the sap currently and will start boiling one of these weekends coming up in April. All the advice has been great.
    Last edited by riley04; 03-30-2011 at 07:30 PM.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Maine, NY.
    Posts
    224

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    When the sap turns cloudy. I also started out with one tap in the beginning, but the next day I was buying more taps and a bunch of line, "i got hooked when i drilled that first hole". Lol! Good luck to ya!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Concord, NY
    Posts
    117

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    Where in NY are you? Here in Western NY it's been froze up hard for the last week and a half and the trees haven't even thought about budding yet.
    Leave your tap(s) in until a)it stops running b)the sap turns into a cloudy snotty yellow mess c)the tree(s) starts to bud out.
    I'm anticipating at least another 2 weeks to go here which is very late compared to other years. The weather decides what we do!
    2x6 raised flue at a buddies operation from '99-'04
    2.5x8 Grimm Lighting at buddies '05-'06 900 taps
    Amish built drop flue 2x6 at our own operation since 2007 ~200 taps
    2011 - Bought buddies Grimm Lightning 2.5x8 raised flue, 407 taps out as of 2/10/11
    Now up to 557 as of 2/27/11
    1967 Tucker Sno-Cat 442-A
    1976 Thiokol 2100B
    I have to be off my rocker

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Altamont, NY
    Posts
    486

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    That's great...

    You have one more tap and 650 fewer posts than ADK1!

    Welcome to the club!

    My God, I did it again.
    Leader WSE 2x6
    12"x20" Mason Finisher
    300 taps.. Majority on tubing
    14'x20' sugarshack
    Kubota RTV900
    New for 2014:
    Sheets filter press
    Added 100 taps
    Home built RO
    www.mallardpondmaple.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Poultney VT
    Posts
    1,899

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    Quote Originally Posted by stoweski View Post
    That's great...

    You have one more tap and 650 fewer posts than ADK1!

    Welcome to the club!

    My God, I did it again.
    http://mapletrader.com/community/sho...t=12130&page=2
    Business Name
    Flat Lander Sugaring (who would think a guy from Az be making syrup)
    64 taps gravity
    Close to 525 on sap sucker
    leader 2x6
    home made preheater
    hood
    1old oil burner for AUF
    1 7D749 for AOF
    New FLS Tsunami Arch
    3 membrane TR Industries RO
    Chumlee of the trader

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    camden ny
    Posts
    83

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    Quote Originally Posted by Southtowns27 View Post
    Where in NY are you? Here in Western NY it's been froze up hard for the last week and a half and the trees haven't even thought about budding yet.
    Leave your tap(s) in until a)it stops running b)the sap turns into a cloudy snotty yellow mess c)the tree(s) starts to bud out.
    I'm anticipating at least another 2 weeks to go here which is very late compared to other years. The weather decides what we do!
    Riley 04 I'm with Southtowns quote, But to add to (c) sometimes ,(a) and (b) don't happen, and when the buds swell up the sap, taste bitter, not sweet .Time to quite if any or all above ....but the (b) may not be the end ,if your contaners (sap)gets to warm/sunny / old or (rain water in it - yellow), three days with temps in high 40' s can turn sap bad, I just wash out the contaners/holding tanks after every draw off of that tank ,exp. when warm out more than three days.I maybe to picky but I do love making light amber syrup!!!! and any milky sap, I dump, some would say comerchel/grade B....whatever, I sad Sh_t and back to Mother earth it gose!! good luck ,ED
    2009 50 taps,outside barrow stove, 2 1/2 gals
    2010 75 taps 12x12 w/upstairs Scrap made sugar shack,barrow stove 4 1/2 gals
    2011 200+ taps,tubeing gravty feed shack,scrap oil/wood furnace homemade into a 2x6 arch upstairs holding tank and a new pump(thanks to my son Brian)Sap&wood hauler-4 g-kids model A front end,fram, spoked rims, and a tractor trailer rearend (just don't get in her way), lol, speaking of that,she now thinks "I've gone over the edge",that is (otherhaft) Total 35 gals.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Traverse City, MI
    Posts
    1

    Question

    Has anyone ever heard that you should pull your spiles when the buzzards come back?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2005
    Location
    smithville flats ny near binghamton
    Posts
    451

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    Nancy,

    Haven't heard that one, but I have heard to wait until you frost the peepers 3 times, Wait until a certain large pond/lake in your area thaws completely out, etc. In any case these are just tell tale signs that the end is near. For us I saw frogs in a ditch 2 weeks ago when we awere at 60 for 2 days, but we are still sapping (guess we only froze them up once). And the ice on Long Pond is still solid, so it is still go time.

    We will make syrup until it is tastes like crap. My money and efforts have already been expended, all I have to do now is gather and boil, the easy part (yeah right).

    What ever you do, don't quit boiling because you reach a certain grade. We have made thousands of gallons of syrup over the past 20 years and I have for the life of me not figured out why I can't make light syrup the last 3 years. Usually we make about a third of a crop as light. I have also seen the first run make commercial, with new pans and a new RO (that was a sickening feeling). Make syrup until it tastes like crap. That's why we make syrup, because it tastes good, not looks good (although that is an added appeal).
    shrunken producer, from 8,000 taps to 4,000 vac 250 gravity
    5x10 Max Flue pan on its own arch 3x7 D&G finishing rig All oil fired
    CDL 2400 RO
    filterpress
    Atlantic Fluidics A-20 vac pump with a Bernard mechanical Double Releaser
    sp-11, bb2 vac pumps

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Lyman, NH
    Posts
    2,163

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    Quote Originally Posted by riley04 View Post
    Could you just go by the weather always staying above freezing instead?
    Sap can turn cloudy or yellow in the middle of the season.

    I generally go by the weather and signs from Mother Nature. First off, the small ponds must generally be ice-free before the trees bud. When the poplars start looking like pussy willows, it means the end is near. If there were 3 or four days of 60 degrees in a row and no freeze in sight, I would start cleaning up. And when the peepers start singing, it's over.
    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.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    New York
    Posts
    17

    Smile

    Allright guys....a big Thanks! I'll be anxious to talk about any increases in my 1 spile operation. You guys definitely motivate me though....it's been fun so far. I joke with some folks in these parts.....that I only can claim to be a sap collector right now! So in a few weeks, I'll cut my teeth a bit more when we boil.
    Just to add comment to a few comments above, I'm located just south of Rochester so yeah, the weather is similar to what Southtowns27 mentioned. I grew up south of Buffalo too....so the weather is only starting to turn now. Gotta tell ya though...the past few days we've had a bumper crop of sap flow (over a gallon both on Wed and Thurs). Thanks again.

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