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Thread: Another 3/16 issue

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    Maine
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    44

    Default Another 3/16 issue

    I have several 3/16 lines, and most of them are performing very well. Of the 3 lines with vac gauges, 2 are running at 28", but one is only pulling 10". In past years, this particular line has always pulled 20+". I found and repaired a couple of (suspected) clogs and a leak, but still stuck at 10", even after replacing the gauge. I have about a dozen taps on a slight grade, then a steep drop of at least 40 feet, then back to slight grade and into 3/4" mainline. The entire top half of the line is completely filled with sap to the point it begins the steep drop. At the last t before the drop, the column of sap seems to be held back, as if the t were clogged. I've replaced this t twice, and both times found it to be clear and had no change in vacuum. If I pull the top t, the entire column drains into the mainline with no issues. I'm using 3/16 stubbies into check valve adaptors, and the tubing was replaced last year. Is this an issue with my line, or are these particular trees just not running well at the times I'm checking (late afternoon after work)? I would suspect the latter to be the case, accept for the fact that my other lines are pulling 28" at the same time, and these particular trees have always performed well.
    2018 302 Taps, Mostly on 3/16
    2x5 Raised Flue Lapierre Waterloo Small Evaporator
    WF Mason Finisher/Canner

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Location
    Covington, New York
    Posts
    1,399

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    Quote Originally Posted by GotSap? View Post
    I have several 3/16 lines, and most of them are performing very well. Of the 3 lines with vac gauges, 2 are running at 28", but one is only pulling 10". In past years, this particular line has always pulled 20+". I found and repaired a couple of (suspected) clogs and a leak, but still stuck at 10", even after replacing the gauge. I have about a dozen taps on a slight grade, then a steep drop of at least 40 feet, then back to slight grade and into 3/4" mainline. The entire top half of the line is completely filled with sap to the point it begins the steep drop. At the last t before the drop, the column of sap seems to be held back, as if the t were clogged. I've replaced this t twice, and both times found it to be clear and had no change in vacuum. If I pull the top t, the entire column drains into the mainline with no issues. I'm using 3/16 stubbies into check valve adaptors, and the tubing was replaced last year. Is this an issue with my line, or are these particular trees just not running well at the times I'm checking (late afternoon after work)? I would suspect the latter to be the case, accept for the fact that my other lines are pulling 28" at the same time, and these particular trees have always performed well.
    This is my first year with a full 3/16ths set up and have a similar issue. Out of eight gauges on a good day they are all reading 25 inches or better with a couple pushing 28. One line is always between 12 and 16 inches. I have walked the line several times and can't find anything obvious. The flow doesn't really look any different than the other lines, although near the bottom there is less bubbles than the others and has a slower appearance in how it moves around the loop and into the saddle. I do not have a back up gauge to put on it to see if it is gauge failure, which is my initial suspicion here.
    Noel Good
    1998 to 2009: 15 taps on buckets, scavenged fire pit and pans
    2010: New 2x4 SS flat pan w/preheater
    2012: Converted the flat pan to continuous flow. 33 buckets. 9.5 gallons made
    2015: New to me Lapierre 18x60 raised flue, new shack, new everything!! 59 taps 23.75 gallons made
    2016: 85 taps 19 gallons
    2017: Purchased 2.5 acres and tubed half with 3/16. 145 taps total 49.25 gallons made
    2018: 200 taps. 162 on 3/16ths 38 on buckets
    www.wnybass.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
    Location
    Rutland, Vermont
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    I would look for wood chips or some sort of debris caught on a tee. We had the same problem last year, never found it until i was changing taps this year. It was always on the high side of the tree.
    Leader 2x6 Raised flue with patriot pans.
    300ish taps

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Danbury, Connecticut
    Posts
    331

    Default

    i would pull the tap at the last tree where it's hung up and see if it comes rushing out the drop (assuming you don't have CV's).
    2016 - 36 Taps - File Cabinet Arch + Food Pans
    2017 - 2.5'x10' drop flues - 3/16 Natural Vacuum - 122 Taps
    2018 - 16x20 Sugar Shack - 3/16 Natural Vacuum - 235 Taps

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    44

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    Well, I finally found the problem yesterday. One drop had a chew in it that would sometimes leak, and sometimes not. I was walking the line yesterday for about the 20th time, and could hear it from at least 10 ft away. Fixed it and the vac shot past 25" almost immediately.
    2018 302 Taps, Mostly on 3/16
    2x5 Raised Flue Lapierre Waterloo Small Evaporator
    WF Mason Finisher/Canner

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Location
    poultney vermont
    Posts
    560

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    Quote Originally Posted by GotSap? View Post
    I have several 3/16 lines, and most of them are performing very well. Of the 3 lines with vac gauges, 2 are running at 28", but one is only pulling 10". In past years, this particular line has always pulled 20+". I found and repaired a couple of (suspected) clogs and a leak, but still stuck at 10", even after replacing the gauge. I have about a dozen taps on a slight grade, then a steep drop of at least 40 feet, then back to slight grade and into 3/4" mainline. The entire top half of the line is completely filled with sap to the point it begins the steep drop. At the last t before the drop, the column of sap seems to be held back, as if the t were clogged. I've replaced this t twice, and both times found it to be clear and had no change in vacuum. If I pull the top t, the entire column drains into the mainline with no issues. I'm using 3/16 stubbies into check valve adaptors, and the tubing was replaced last year. Is this an issue with my line, or are these particular trees just not running well at the times I'm checking (late afternoon after work)? I would suspect the latter to be the case, accept for the fact that my other lines are pulling 28" at the same time, and these particular trees have always performed well.
    The last t before your drop may be in a lesky tree. Take the drop line for that t and kink it or clamp it with pliars, watch the colomn of sap, if it speeds up behind the t and pulls the full column of sap thru the t then I would suspect the tree is leaky or hollow.
    18x30 sugarshack
    3200 taps high vac
    3x10 inferno with steampan
    7'' wes fab filter press
    springtech 600gph RO
    400 gal stainless bulk tank
    1-2500
    3-1550's
    4-275's
    more taps to come in '19

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    321

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    Quote Originally Posted by GotSap? View Post
    Well, I finally found the problem yesterday. One drop had a chew in it that would sometimes leak, and sometimes not. I was walking the line yesterday for about the 20th time, and could hear it from at least 10 ft away. Fixed it and the vac shot past 25" almost immediately.
    Usually how I find leaks is similar. Go to where the tubing has solid non or slow moving sap and the leak is certainly close. Fix it and watch everytbing flow like it should.
    2017 - 60 taps 3/16 gravity, oil tank arck w/ steam pans - 12.5 gallons
    2018 - 120 taps 3/16 hybrid (shurflo), 2x6 raised flue w/hood, homemade arch w/ AUF & AOF - 34.5 gallons

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    East Fairfield Vermont
    Posts
    135

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    I had one of my 3/16" lines show 0 vac 5-6 days ago and the whole upper part of full of sap and not moving. As I walked down the line I came to THE tee that seemed to be the issue. Everything below the tee was flowing good, everything above was a stand still. Pulled the tap at the tee and put my finger over it, good suction. Pulled the next tap above it, and it was actually pushing pressure. So I figured I had a blocked tee. Things were close to freezing up and I was busy so I couldn't take care of the problem right then. So yesterday with our good run yesterday my daughter wanted to put her buckets out. So I put my tools in the buckets too so I could fix that plugged tee. To my surprise I got to it and everything was flowing fine, and was showing 24" of vac at the end of the line. Must have had just enough sap and vacuum to clean it out on its own.

    On a side note my 3/16" produced 200 gallons yesterday on 80 taps, in 15 hours. Not to shabby

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Maine
    Posts
    44

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    Quote Originally Posted by rhwells2003 View Post
    I had one of my 3/16" lines show 0 vac 5-6 days ago and the whole upper part of full of sap and not moving. As I walked down the line I came to THE tee that seemed to be the issue. Everything below the tee was flowing good, everything above was a stand still. Pulled the tap at the tee and put my finger over it, good suction. Pulled the next tap above it, and it was actually pushing pressure. So I figured I had a blocked tee. Things were close to freezing up and I was busy so I couldn't take care of the problem right then. So yesterday with our good run yesterday my daughter wanted to put her buckets out. So I put my tools in the buckets too so I could fix that plugged tee. To my surprise I got to it and everything was flowing fine, and was showing 24" of vac at the end of the line. Must have had just enough sap and vacuum to clean it out on its own.

    On a side note my 3/16" produced 200 gallons yesterday on 80 taps, in 15 hours. Not to shabby
    It really is impressive what the 3/16 does when it really gets going.
    2018 302 Taps, Mostly on 3/16
    2x5 Raised Flue Lapierre Waterloo Small Evaporator
    WF Mason Finisher/Canner

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