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Thread: Western Wisconsin

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Wisconsin, Spring Valley
    Posts
    180

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    These stories are funny when we called Pittman's in January they didn't have any 3/16 line at the time and told me he was concerned about it plugging up and it might not move the sap fast enough on a heavy flow day.Well we talked on phone for awhile and he wanted me to come down and check out there nice releaser's and vacuum pumps they had.After he couldn't get no where with that, he got my phone number and within 2 hours he called me back and said he would have line there in a couple days.

    Sap Hauler
    -1996 Ford F250
    -2003 Yamaha Grizzly 660
    2016 Year:About 925 Taps on 3/16
    2015 Year:About 775 Taps
    2014 Year:About 270 Taps
    2013 Year:About 265 Taps
    2012 Year:About 200 Taps
    2011 Year:About 200 Taps
    2010 Year:About 65 Taps

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Knapp, Wis
    Posts
    1,868

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    What are you using for spiles since Leader didn't have any yet? I didn't like the idea of spending more to put a dual connecter in the drop line, so I ordered spouts from cdl. Plus, I was told basically in one sentence at the leader open house that you could and couldn't have a 3/16" drop line. Lot of opinions and no facts IMO.
    Mark

    Where we made syrup long before the trendies made it popular, now its just another commodity.

    John Deere 4000, 830, and 420 crawler
    1400 taps, 600 gph CDL RO, 4x12 wood-fired Leader, forced air and preheater. 400 gallon Sap-O-Matic vacuum gathering tank, PTO powered. 2500 gallon X truck tank, 17 bulk tanks.
    No cage tanks allowed on this farm!

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Wisconsin, Spring Valley
    Posts
    180

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    We are using regular 5/16 clear spiles and 5/16 drop lines, CDL has a 3/16-5/16 tee so you can still use 5/16 drop lines. so 80% of our woods has 5/16 spiles and droplines.

    Sap Hauler
    -1996 Ford F250
    -2003 Yamaha Grizzly 660
    2016 Year:About 925 Taps on 3/16
    2015 Year:About 775 Taps
    2014 Year:About 270 Taps
    2013 Year:About 265 Taps
    2012 Year:About 200 Taps
    2011 Year:About 200 Taps
    2010 Year:About 65 Taps

  4. #24
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    737

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    Well, it's been fun visiting everyone this week.

    On Tuesday I got to go see Mark Casper's setup in Knapp and see how fast syrup comes out of a 4x12 when the sap goes in at 10%. I think we made more syrup in an hour and a half than I can in a day.

    Just this morning I went to see the woods Cody and his dad are tapping. I definitely don't have the slope these guys are working with, but I hope with the addition of a Shurflo at the bottom of my hill that I'll be able to see some numbers like they're seeing next year.

    We had a decent run yesterday and it ran even a little better today. If Cody and Mark aren't posting, it's probably because they're trying to keep afloat in all the sap they're pulling in. We finally got enough to fire up the rig again. I cooked about another 8 gallons of syrup this afternoon, and I've still got about 300-350 gallons of sap on hand.

    Many of our tapholes dried up, so we decided to put out another 80 or so this morning. There's no way that this will be a bumper year for us, due to the warm weather in the middle of the season, but we may manage to eek out a 70-80% crop. If that happens, it'll be much easier to swallow the price of installing new tubing on the majority of our woods. Plus, there's that new chainsaw I've been eyeing...

    Anyway, I'm gonna shut down the rig for the night and come back in the morning. A big thanks to Cody, Todd, Mark, Mark, and to mapletrader for putting everyone in touch!
    Second generation sap rat.

    Started taking over in 2012
    2012-2016: 300 buckets 120 on gravity tubing. Waterloo 2x10 wood fired. Averaged 105 gallons per season.
    2017: hoping for 300 on 3/16 with Shurflo and 50 buckets. New used 4x14 Algier wood fired cooker. 180 gallons of syrup

    2018: 300 on vacuum 2 buckets, finally got a splitter!

  5. #25
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    737

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    On a related note, I ordered a couple of Shurflo 2088s at 3:00am Sunday morning. Amazon said they could have them here by Tuesday with 2 day shipping (free with my Amazon prime trial). I'll be ****ed if they didn't move it forward. They're now telling me that they'll be here by 8:00pm Monday. That's 41 hours or less! Here I thought I had until Tuesday evening to get my plumbing all figured out, but now I gotta jump on it.

    My plan is to build a basic manifold and hook up a Shurflo to my 100 taps on 5/16. I wish now that I had done this three weeks ago, but live and learn, I guess. Hopefully it'll give me a decent amount of sap even with old holes.
    Second generation sap rat.

    Started taking over in 2012
    2012-2016: 300 buckets 120 on gravity tubing. Waterloo 2x10 wood fired. Averaged 105 gallons per season.
    2017: hoping for 300 on 3/16 with Shurflo and 50 buckets. New used 4x14 Algier wood fired cooker. 180 gallons of syrup

    2018: 300 on vacuum 2 buckets, finally got a splitter!

  6. #26
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    737

    Default

    My Shurflo pumps came at 1:45 today. I don't know how you can order something at 3:00 am Sunday, and Amazon can get it in the car of my Wisconsin Rural Letter Carrier by the time they leave the post office Monday morning. Really not trying to advertise here, I'm honestly boggled.

    I didn't get time to cook this afternoon, even though I should have. Had other commitments. Did bring in 300 gallons of sap from our buckets, though. So now I've got about 600 gallons on hand plus what's on the trees. We collected from 2:30 to 4:00, and it hasn't stopped running yet. Definitely slowed down, but still dripping out there.

    The minute I went home I went to work plumbing up the Shurflo. I got it rigged up on about 80 taps. It still needs some fine tuning, but it's pulling 12.5" right now. I'm very impressed at it's performance given the price. Tomorrow I'll rig up a recirculation line and try to get that number closer to 20.

    Alright, time for bed. Gotta get up early and get cooking!
    Second generation sap rat.

    Started taking over in 2012
    2012-2016: 300 buckets 120 on gravity tubing. Waterloo 2x10 wood fired. Averaged 105 gallons per season.
    2017: hoping for 300 on 3/16 with Shurflo and 50 buckets. New used 4x14 Algier wood fired cooker. 180 gallons of syrup

    2018: 300 on vacuum 2 buckets, finally got a splitter!

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Wisconsin, Spring Valley
    Posts
    180

    Default

    Now your cooking Ryan.We have been getting great runs on the 3/16line,our last load last night we went over 16000 gallons of sap for the season so far.

    Sap Hauler
    -1996 Ford F250
    -2003 Yamaha Grizzly 660
    2016 Year:About 925 Taps on 3/16
    2015 Year:About 775 Taps
    2014 Year:About 270 Taps
    2013 Year:About 265 Taps
    2012 Year:About 200 Taps
    2011 Year:About 200 Taps
    2010 Year:About 65 Taps

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Dec 2005
    Location
    Knapp, Wis
    Posts
    1,868

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    Came in for some coffee......3900 gallons sap between Monday and Tuesday, got it all through the RO once and doing a rinse. Will fire up shortly. The sap that ran on the south hill side today really clouded up in a hurry, so snatched that and ro'ed it straight to the head tank. The syrup I made Monday morning was almost MA and tasted awesome. Other than a little different smell to the steam, I have not detected any bud .....yet. Sugar content of the sap went up about .15-.20 after the couple freezing nights we had, so its between 1.8 - 1.9.

    When I picked the last sap up at 7pm, they had almost come to a stop even with full vacuum. I'm thinking there will be a mother load of a run sometime during or right after this snowstorm.
    Mark

    Where we made syrup long before the trendies made it popular, now its just another commodity.

    John Deere 4000, 830, and 420 crawler
    1400 taps, 600 gph CDL RO, 4x12 wood-fired Leader, forced air and preheater. 400 gallon Sap-O-Matic vacuum gathering tank, PTO powered. 2500 gallon X truck tank, 17 bulk tanks.
    No cage tanks allowed on this farm!

  9. #29
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    737

    Default

    Glad to hear you're cooking away Mark! Seems like good timing for your time off work after all.

    Quote Originally Posted by markcasper View Post
    When I picked the last sap up at 7pm, they had almost come to a stop even with full vacuum. I'm thinking there will be a mother load of a run sometime during or right after this snowstorm.
    I think you're right. My forecast is showing 3-5" of snow and about 10 hours below freezing followed by a high of 41 Thursday. It's always hard to predict, but it seems like a recipe for success.

    After that it freezes Thursday night and again Saturday and Sunday, so we should be in for some sap yet this year.

    I cooked most of the day yesterday. Cooked down about 650 gallons of sap and made 17 or 18 gallons of syrup. Nota record by any means, but my biggest day of cooking this year. I probably have about 300-350 gallons from yesterday to deal with, but then I'm caught up. So far, I'm right under 70 gallons drawn off, so between what I cook today and what's left in the cooker, it seems like 80-90 gallons for the season is within reach. Still hoping for more sap, though. It'd be really great to break 100 gallons. Anything over that and I'll be tickled pink.
    Second generation sap rat.

    Started taking over in 2012
    2012-2016: 300 buckets 120 on gravity tubing. Waterloo 2x10 wood fired. Averaged 105 gallons per season.
    2017: hoping for 300 on 3/16 with Shurflo and 50 buckets. New used 4x14 Algier wood fired cooker. 180 gallons of syrup

    2018: 300 on vacuum 2 buckets, finally got a splitter!

  10. #30
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    737

    Default

    Well 3-5" of snow turned into about 9 or 10.

    We're pretty well socked in at my place. It's been below freezing for about 7 hours so far and it should hold all night. Hopefully this freeze and the storm brings some big sap runs in the next few days.

    I'm headed up north to look at a new evaporator after the sun comes up. I told my wife that since we're going from 420 taps without vacuum to 350 on vacuum and about 100 buckets, that there's gonna be a lot more cooking next year. In 2013 I cooked 160 gallons of syrup on my 2x10, but that was a lot of long days. I told her that it was her choice for next year. I said that I could run it all through the current rig and have plenty of 14 hour days boiling, or we could get a bigger cooker. Lo and behold, she says we should get a bigger rig!

    There's two 4x14s near me on Craigslist right now as luck would have it. One of them has pans that have been repaired with JB Weld, so that's out, but the other one looks good from the description. 4x14 is a little bigger than a need, but hey maybe I'll find some sap to buy. If not I think I'll end up with lots of 3-4 hour cooking sessions, which would be great. A 3x12 would probably be a little better fit, but I can buy this 4x14 for quite a bit less than a new 3x12, so that's hard to ignore.

    I'll see if I can get a couple pictures while I'm up there. I don't really like thinking about how much work it's gonna be to disassemble my cooker and install a new one, but if I do go with a 4x14, I'll probably never have to do it again.
    Second generation sap rat.

    Started taking over in 2012
    2012-2016: 300 buckets 120 on gravity tubing. Waterloo 2x10 wood fired. Averaged 105 gallons per season.
    2017: hoping for 300 on 3/16 with Shurflo and 50 buckets. New used 4x14 Algier wood fired cooker. 180 gallons of syrup

    2018: 300 on vacuum 2 buckets, finally got a splitter!

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