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Thread: Still waiting for a good run in the Upper Peninsula

  1. #31
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Manistique, MI
    Posts
    36

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    We put 280 gallons into the RO yesterday, boiling today. It's running like crazy here in Manistique, probably looking at another 280 gallons to collect today. This is the run we've all been waiting for!

    I just cleaned out my tanks (again)--as I'm nervous about bacteria when it starts to get warm like this. I look at all the gear and say, "just hang in there for a bit longer"...

    Best of luck! I pray for good sap runs and NO MORE SNOW.

    --J.R.
    J.R. Cunningham
    Manistique, MI

    2011 22 Taps
    2012 100 Taps
    2013 300 Taps
    2014 500 Taps (300 Traditional, 200 Gravity)

    An Upper Peninsula family being managed by 70 acres of sugarbush.

  2. #32
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Newberry, Michigan
    Posts
    166

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    JR when u put in 280 gallons how much do you get out that u have to boil down. looks like a decent run but i don't have time to run buckets and boil too. Got some wood today and am busy splitting. GM boiler we can get in contact after the season I'm just off 117 on Red Camp Rd.
    2006 - 12 taps on open fire
    2011 - 50 taps new 2 x 4 flat pan + warmer
    2012 - 65 taps new 16 x 16 sugar shack
    2013- 75 taps
    2 Labs and my wife's Springer

  3. #33
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Manistique, MI
    Posts
    36

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    Fish:

    I RO 280 gallons down to about 55 gallons for boiling. I have a 4x40" membrane (low pressure), and it takes me around 10 hours. I collect, run the RO at night, and boil during the day to try to keep within the 24 hour window. Last night I didn't do so well. My 1/2HP pump that supplies the initial pressure to the RO (before the boost pump) is squeaking and heating up. I found 30 gallons of warm sap in my barrel this morning. Gotta get that in the evaporator asap...

    Good luck. Froze hard last night--might be another good one today.

    --J.R.
    J.R. Cunningham
    Manistique, MI

    2011 22 Taps
    2012 100 Taps
    2013 300 Taps
    2014 500 Taps (300 Traditional, 200 Gravity)

    An Upper Peninsula family being managed by 70 acres of sugarbush.

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Grand Marais, Michigan
    Posts
    18

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    Collected 33 gal Mon., 24 yest. Finsished 4th boil last nite - 88 gal towards next. I try to boil as soon as circumstances permit, but a 24 hr rule isn't practicle with our set up. Got down to 30 last nite - will see what today brings. Good luck guys.
    Oil tank evaporator w/fire brick and grate, 8 ft. stack
    2 x 4 ss pan w/warmer
    2013 76 taps w/milk jugs
    2014 41 taps w/milk jugs
    Polaris Ranger w/tracks

  5. #35
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Location
    Manistique, MI
    Posts
    36

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    I hear you on the 24 hour rule not always being practical. I find that I'm constantly chasing down the "slow link" in my process. Two years ago I had 2 2x20" membranes and that was enough to keep me boiling all the time, last year my single 4x40 membrane was enough but I couldn't evaporate fast enough. This year it's (again) the RO holding the spot as the slow link in the process.

    This, to me, seems to be the greatest struggle in building a sizable operation: Capacity and scalability. I find that we can't simply build or buy a bigger "thing" without upgrading the whole rest of the operation. bigger evap, more filter capacity, bigger RO, more taps, bigger transfer pump lines, etc. Every time I make one "thing" in the process bigger, all the other "things" have to be dealt with. I've yet to answer the question about how I get from 300 to 1,000 taps a little bit at a time--seems next to impossible.

    You know, folks, us yooper sugarmakers need to get together after season and share a meal/drink. As I stood outside sanitizing my equipment this morning (again), it occurred to me that I was absolutely exhausted. I thought about fishman splitting wood up in Newberry. Given the fact that my snowshoes are still on the porch ready for duty, I've got a four foot snow hill in my front yard, and it's sunny and 41 degrees, and the season is (in theory) almost over, I can't help but appreciate how unpredictable and tough maple season can be. Snow? Yep. Mud? Got it. Fermentation friendly daytime temperatures? Yep. Freezing nights? Sure.

    Do I love it? Of course. But inevitably this time of year, I'm tired and ready for a break.

    Anyway...let's all hang in there for this season end and get together in the off season and toast to a great year.

    --J.R.
    J.R. Cunningham
    Manistique, MI

    2011 22 Taps
    2012 100 Taps
    2013 300 Taps
    2014 500 Taps (300 Traditional, 200 Gravity)

    An Upper Peninsula family being managed by 70 acres of sugarbush.

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Newberry, Michigan
    Posts
    166

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    Sounds good to me. Trying to boil, finish and fight this flue bug at the same time.
    2006 - 12 taps on open fire
    2011 - 50 taps new 2 x 4 flat pan + warmer
    2012 - 65 taps new 16 x 16 sugar shack
    2013- 75 taps
    2 Labs and my wife's Springer

  7. #37
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Grand Marais, Michigan
    Posts
    18

    Default Winding down?

    Got 20 gal today. With the warm up and the cool down thats coming, my taps may be "dried up" by time the next good day comes?
    Oil tank evaporator w/fire brick and grate, 8 ft. stack
    2 x 4 ss pan w/warmer
    2013 76 taps w/milk jugs
    2014 41 taps w/milk jugs
    Polaris Ranger w/tracks

  8. #38
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Location
    Newberry, Michigan
    Posts
    166

    Default

    Looks like Saturday night at low 20s and Sunday being sunny and mid 40s might be it for me. Gotta get cleaned up and get the boat ready for some Coho and steelhead fishing at Grand Marais. Just went over 20 gallons doubling my best ever.
    2006 - 12 taps on open fire
    2011 - 50 taps new 2 x 4 flat pan + warmer
    2012 - 65 taps new 16 x 16 sugar shack
    2013- 75 taps
    2 Labs and my wife's Springer

  9. #39
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Location
    Grand Marais, Michigan
    Posts
    18

    Default

    It looks like you got exactly what they say you should get - 1qt./tap. I've never done that good. Congratularions!!
    Quote Originally Posted by fishman View Post
    Looks like Saturday night at low 20s and Sunday being sunny and mid 40s might be it for me. Gotta get cleaned up and get the boat ready for some Coho and steelhead fishing at Grand Marais. Just went over 20 gallons doubling my best ever.
    Oil tank evaporator w/fire brick and grate, 8 ft. stack
    2 x 4 ss pan w/warmer
    2013 76 taps w/milk jugs
    2014 41 taps w/milk jugs
    Polaris Ranger w/tracks

  10. #40
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    UP MI
    Posts
    125

    Default

    30 gallons yesterday, Nothing today. More snow 8 to 18" in the forecast. My glutes are sick of snowshoes. I think I may need to update my "BEER WHISKY TOTALS".

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