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Thread: Tapped in Westfield

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Springfield, MA
    Posts
    115

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    Any others tapping in Westfield this year?

    115 gallons collected Monday - Wednesday. First boil last night went through 45 gallons at 8 gph on my 20x30 pan. Focusing on following the stack temp vs timer for firing and getting the process down for the new setup. Wondering how to maintain a good boil with "only" 1000 degree reading. Very little wood was pinning the needle. More boiling and practice tonight before the storm and the weekend temp forecast looks like I might catch up with the sap.

    Good luck on the season to everyone.
    2020 - 2 taps, 1/2 pint on a turkey fryer, About 3/4 pint syrup in two weeks - Proof of concept!
    2021 - 20 x 30 divided pan on a Mason arch, 34 taps and 8 gallons for family and friends to judge. Dad hooked as well.
    2022 - 8 x 14 sugarhouse and an electric steam bottler. 50 buckets!

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    chester, ma
    Posts
    705

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    Quote Originally Posted by Aaron Stack View Post
    Any others tapping in Westfield this year?
    Not far from you as the crow flies, but a lot colder up in the foothills at 900 feet. Temps barely pegged lower 50s in this latest run, when I think they were much warmer for you. Sounds like you're off to a great start! Over 2 GTP for just one run, right? Or did you have any trees tapped for the run last week? I came in at 1.5 GPT for each of the first two runs, and I threw away a *lot* of ice (close to half). Certainly saves on boiling time!

    Also, you're getting better evaporation than I am, and on a smaller pan. I have a Mason 2x3 and I can get close to 8 GPH, but have never quite hit that mark. So I think you're doing well. I don't have a blower, do you?

    GO
    Last edited by berkshires; 02-25-2022 at 02:43 PM.
    2016: Homemade arch from old wood stove; 2 steam tray pans; 6 taps; 1.1 gal
    2017: Same setup. 15 taps; 4.5 gal
    2018: Same setup. Limited time. 12 taps and short season; 2.2 gal
    2019: Very limited time. 7 taps and a short season; 1.8 gal
    2020: New Mason 2x3 XL halfway through season; 9 taps 2 gal
    2021: Same 2x3, 18 taps, 4.5 gal
    2022: 23 taps, 5.9 gal
    2023: 25 taps?
    All taps on buckets

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Springfield, MA
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    115

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    Lucky you on getting both runs. I was finishing up the sugarhouse thanks to my Dad's fantastic help - he's become addicted as well. This was the first run. I tapped Saturday but it was cold through Monday afternoon. It was really all Tuesday and Wednesday's production. I do have a blower but used it on low sparingly. It turned the pan into a volcano but the stack temps were high. I used it for a bit after firing then would turn it off.

    The gage readings stop at 1200 so I'd think 1600 (pin temp maybe) - 1800. At 1100 it still boiled but 1200+ it ratcheted up to a nice roar. Good to hear 8 is where it should be. Last year I was in 12-14 range, but did go through two chimneys, hence the focus on stack temps. This one is rated for 1000 continuous and higher depending on the duration.

    Still 70 Gallons to go through this weekend and Wednesday forward looks good.
    2020 - 2 taps, 1/2 pint on a turkey fryer, About 3/4 pint syrup in two weeks - Proof of concept!
    2021 - 20 x 30 divided pan on a Mason arch, 34 taps and 8 gallons for family and friends to judge. Dad hooked as well.
    2022 - 8 x 14 sugarhouse and an electric steam bottler. 50 buckets!

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Springfield, MA
    Posts
    115

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    Haven't collected since Wednesday, but pulled 23 gallons at 2.2 - 3.4% today. 5 gallons at 2% from the Norway at home so it's still going strong
    2020 - 2 taps, 1/2 pint on a turkey fryer, About 3/4 pint syrup in two weeks - Proof of concept!
    2021 - 20 x 30 divided pan on a Mason arch, 34 taps and 8 gallons for family and friends to judge. Dad hooked as well.
    2022 - 8 x 14 sugarhouse and an electric steam bottler. 50 buckets!

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Springfield, MA
    Posts
    115

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    Quick season. Last collected and boiled yesterday with 6 gallons in the freezer for bottling. Pulling taps and starting cleanup this weekend.
    2020 - 2 taps, 1/2 pint on a turkey fryer, About 3/4 pint syrup in two weeks - Proof of concept!
    2021 - 20 x 30 divided pan on a Mason arch, 34 taps and 8 gallons for family and friends to judge. Dad hooked as well.
    2022 - 8 x 14 sugarhouse and an electric steam bottler. 50 buckets!

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    chester, ma
    Posts
    705

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    Six gallons is nothing to sneeze at! I'm still at only 2. Still, why the short season?

    GO
    2016: Homemade arch from old wood stove; 2 steam tray pans; 6 taps; 1.1 gal
    2017: Same setup. 15 taps; 4.5 gal
    2018: Same setup. Limited time. 12 taps and short season; 2.2 gal
    2019: Very limited time. 7 taps and a short season; 1.8 gal
    2020: New Mason 2x3 XL halfway through season; 9 taps 2 gal
    2021: Same 2x3, 18 taps, 4.5 gal
    2022: 23 taps, 5.9 gal
    2023: 25 taps?
    All taps on buckets

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Springfield, MA
    Posts
    115

    Default

    The buds on the reds all popped early in the week and the hot days turned the sap in the tank cloudy. I was surprised to see the sap in the warming pan go from clear Tuesday evening to a gooey, cloudy soup by Wednesday morning. I only collected 7 gallons from the 23 high producing sugars Wednesday and used that to push a final half gallon out of the pan.

    I'm happy with it, but was shooting for 10. I have about 5 gallons of sweet in the freezer to finish off on the turkey fryer so I'll get a little more.

    Learned a lot this season. Sap temperature control will probably be the focus of this year's upgrade. I fought frozen and then spoiling sap so need to work on that. A larger evaporator would also solve that issue

    It's Maple Weekend here in Mass so I have plans to visit a few local operations Sunday to see how the bigger folks do it.
    Last edited by Aaron Stack; 03-18-2022 at 04:12 AM.
    2020 - 2 taps, 1/2 pint on a turkey fryer, About 3/4 pint syrup in two weeks - Proof of concept!
    2021 - 20 x 30 divided pan on a Mason arch, 34 taps and 8 gallons for family and friends to judge. Dad hooked as well.
    2022 - 8 x 14 sugarhouse and an electric steam bottler. 50 buckets!

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2020
    Location
    Springfield, MA
    Posts
    115

    Default

    Usually by the time an addict admits things its way out of control - hah! But I'm faced with needing a new laptop and every time I look at them I compare what the cost is to a new maple upgrade. 7 months to go...
    2020 - 2 taps, 1/2 pint on a turkey fryer, About 3/4 pint syrup in two weeks - Proof of concept!
    2021 - 20 x 30 divided pan on a Mason arch, 34 taps and 8 gallons for family and friends to judge. Dad hooked as well.
    2022 - 8 x 14 sugarhouse and an electric steam bottler. 50 buckets!

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Nashville, MI
    Posts
    601

    Default

    Go for the maple upgrade. By the time you get a new laptop it is outdated anyway.
    2004 - 2012 2x3 flat pan 25 to 60 taps
    2012 2x3 new divided pan w/draw off 55 taps
    2018 - didn't boil surgery - bought new evaporator
    2019 new SML 2x4 raised flue high output evap. 65 taps
    made 17 gal. syrup
    2020 - only put out 53 taps - made 16.25 ga.l syrup
    2021 - Didn't work out
    2022 - 25 taps on bags / 8 taps on 3/16's line - late start

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