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Thread: I know it's early :)

  1. #21
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Kentucky
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    34

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    Today was a good day.

    My first run on 3/16th tubing, I was a little discouraged that I had done something incorrect yesterday (I expected a little run), but today it came and I was beyond excited.

    I have about 50 taps so far. One of my laterals is great. The other one, I feel like there must be a leak somewhere. It probably is giving me 1/3 the sap flow as the other one, and a lot that comes out of the end is air bubbles, while the other one is a constant stream. I have checked every T, tightend everything, even replaced some of the T's I thought may be questionable, but still nothing seems to change.

    Any tricks on finding the culprit?

  2. #22
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Granville, PA
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    Make sure that all of your spiles are in tight. Don't tap too hard or you will split the bark but tight enough. If your spiles are clear, there should not be a air bubble that stays in the spiles.

    Look at the line from bottom to top, if there is a squirrel bite there will be a stream of air bubbles that starts at the hole when the sap is running.

    You know that you are getting full vacuum when you get full stream of sap for about 20 to 30 feet before air bubbles.
    Last edited by minehart gap; 12-24-2018 at 06:19 PM.
    Matt,
    Minehart Gap Maple

  3. #23
    Join Date
    Dec 2015
    Location
    Tennessee
    Posts
    155

    Default excited too!

    You guys are getting me pumped up!! Im gonna try to do some 3/16 gravity lines down here as well. Best of luck all season and thanks to everyone who replies to these posts with good experienced advice!

  4. #24
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Oneida NY
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    9,778

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    If you have a leak it can usually be seen at fittings. Watch to locate the first place a fast bubble first shows in the line. However, sometimes it can vary like you are seeing but no leaks. The trees give off gases and those will look like air in the tubing. You will see a line of sap/air/sap/air and so forth all the way down. Higher up on the hill where there are fewer taps above it, the sap/air will move much slower, as you add taps going down hill the flow will start moving faster. Seeing sap and air exit the lateral at the tank is not necessarily a bad thing unless you find a leak.
    Dave Klish about 1320 taps in '15, doing fewer each year, about 450 planned for 2020 (and after?)
    2012 Mahindra 36 HP 4x4/ loader/cab/heat/AC:-)
    added a gooseneck equipment trailer and F350 to tow it to haul more sap
    3x8 raised flue evaporator
    250 GPH converted to electric, RO by Ray Gingerich
    6.32 KW solar system, 1.48KW is battery backed up, all net metered
    http://s1041.photobucket.com/albums/...anssugarhouse/
    website: www.cnymaple.com

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Kentucky
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    Thanks all - I also echo esetter's appreciation for the help received here.

    I did find it interesting, on the lateral that is not doing as well. the very first tap, I can see sap in the line, but it is very slow @maple flats (just like you describe). But the lateral that is running good, it seems to move much faster at the top.

    I did have a tree that the tap went much further in that the others, I wonder if maybe it is hallow and may be causing a leak. I think I will check it first thing tomorrow am. I checked the line from bottom to top several times, there was no obvious place where air bubbles were being started. The whole sap flow was kind of sluggish - it is just bugging me now

    Here is a short video of the difference. I tried to upload it, but it wouldn't let me. This is just a mp4 that will download, it is less than 1MB.

    https://video.flex1-1.fna.fbcdn.net/...=5C22FBA5&dl=1

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Jul 2015
    Location
    Bruceton Mills, WV
    Posts
    62

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    One thing that I find useful in leak checking 3/16 tubing is a pair, or two, of needle-nose vise grips with 5/16 in tubing covering the teeth. With these you can pinch off certain drops or sections of the tubing to see the flow change. Another thing, if the sap is flowing and a drop does not have sap in it, that is an indication of a possible leak. You can check a drop by making a U-trap in the line. The sap should pool ar the bottom of the trap with maybe slow air flow. If the sap in the trap gets pushed out quickly by bubbles the spout is probably leaking.

    Keith
    Last edited by WVKeith; 12-24-2018 at 09:13 PM. Reason: Additions
    2018: 684 taps: 525-3/16" Gr.,159-3/16" Hybrid; Mountain Maple Super Sap Sucker, CDL 600 RO - 131 gal.; retired from WVU in May
    2017: 439 Taps - 3/16" Gravity, Goulds 18GBS15, CDL 2X6 Drop Flue, Wes Fab 7" SB Filter Press, Smokey Lake WJ Bottler - 90 gal.
    2016: 258 Taps - 3/16" Gravity, Honda WX15, NGMP 2X6 Flat Pan, Deer Run 125 RO - 68 gal.
    2015: 20 Taps - Jugs, Turkey Fryer and 2-Burner Stove - 2.5 gal.

  7. #27
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Kentucky
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    34

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    Quote Originally Posted by WVKeith View Post
    One thing that I find useful in leak checking 3/16 tubing is a pair, or two, of needle-nose vise grips with 5/16 in tubing covering the teeth. With these you can pinch off certain drops or sections of the tubing to see the flow change. Another thing, if the sap is flowing and a drop does not have sap in it, that is an indication of a possible leak. You can check a drop by making a U-trap in the line. The sap should pool ar the bottom of the trap with maybe slow air flow. If the sap in the trap gets pushed out quickly by bubbles the spout is probably leaking.

    Keith
    needle-nose with tubing covering the teeth - that is a great idea!

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Granville, PA
    Posts
    256

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    If one of your taps sunk into the tree further than the rest there is a chance that you split the bark and that will cause a vacuum leak.

    From the looks of your video, there may be something else. Perhaps the lateral that isn't running has less taps or doesn't have as much elevation change causing vacuum. Or maybe those taps are in a cooler area that just didn't run. The sap should move faster at the bottom of the lateral than the top.
    Matt,
    Minehart Gap Maple

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Oct 2017
    Location
    Kentucky
    Posts
    34

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    Yeah, I think it is due to number of taps/pressure. I am going to modify that run to include some tree's a left out later tomorrow and see if that improves.

    It is warming up today and tomorrow here, will be in the 50's.

    The sap has quit running due to the weather. Is it normal for sap/air to stay in the tubing until the next run?

  10. #30
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    Chatham NH
    Posts
    1,132

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    Yes you should have sap in the tubing, if you don't then you have a leak, the leak let's air in and allows the tubing to drain.
    Nate Hutchins
    Nate & Kate's Maple
    2018 1000 taps?
    20x36 sugarhouse
    CDL 600gph RO
    Franken evaporator, lapierre arch, smokylake pans and a leader hood with pre-heater.
    A wife and 2 kids.

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