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Thread: Western Mass 2019

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2014
    Location
    westfield ma
    Posts
    437

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    i wait until after v day to tap anything.. maybe a bit longer depending on the forecast. depending on your operation it maybe be easier or harder to make the right choice.... i like to wait till it looks and feels right to me, even tho it was tee shirt weather in my area for a few days my test taps didn`t do any great so the wait continues.... my reasoning is that there is nothing worse than dealing with frozen releasers and keeping flu pan from freezing in prolonged cold to start with nevermind all the other headaches down the line to get to finished syrup. choose your window wisely , because impatinces can turn into a headache till the weather gets better atleast with sugaring that is . good luck
    2x6 leader WSE with AUF, hood,preheater
    waterguy RO
    leader 16 gal custom water jacketed canner
    10 in short stack wes fab filter press
    540 taps on tubing with vac & always adding
    2- benders running 25" hg from GAST vac pumps
    few stainless bulk tanks
    1978 chevy 1 ton 4x4 dually
    IH T340 dozer with 6-way blade

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Feb 2018
    Location
    Montague, MA
    Posts
    14

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    Flowing good today, needed those extra freezing temps where it didn't flow for 3 days. My sugar jumped to 2.5% from 1.4%. Can't wait till I own some actual land with sugar maples on them. Second year sugaring to get the process down till I move. My yards like a small scale experiment testing different methods, tapping times, line sizes, etc. I used 5/16 last year and switched to 3/16 with probably a 3 ft drop total to test the theory that 3/16 shouldn't be used. I sustain 21in on shurflo pump and my output has increased. Even have some taps with looped lines at messed up angles just to see if it would flow good and even those are sucking sap good. Wish I had more trees to do multiple experiments. I'm addicted to the methods of madness as I am to making it.
    2018 -12 taps 8 vacuum 4 gravity/RO = 3 gallons syrup
    2019 - 20 taps upgraded vacuum system/RO = goal 7 gallons

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Location
    Granville, MA
    Posts
    85

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    Hung 16 buckets for starters. A few running slow. Looks like maybe 4 day window before a long cold snap. If buckets look good midday tomorrow will put out more taps maybe on a 3/16 line.
    50 taps ave. half on buckets half on 3/16
    2x3 pan on fire brick / fieldstone arch
    started 2012

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    chester, ma
    Posts
    310

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    Good luck guys! It definitely looks like now's the time to start. If I could I'd have tapped on Weds, but I'm going to have to wait until March. Though it does look like there's a cold snap coming. Hope it doesn't last long.
    2016: First year. Homemade evaporator out of little woodburning stove with steam tray pans. 6 taps on buckets. 1.1 galls syrup
    2017: Same little homemade evaporator, but souped up. Still 2 steam tray pans. 15 taps on buckets. 4.5 galls syrup.
    2018: Same setup. Limited time (New baby!) Downsized to 12 taps and short season. 2.2 gallons syrup.
    2019: Still very limited time, with a one-year-old. Downsized even further to 7 taps and a short season. 2.1 gallons syrup

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    chester, ma
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Just checked, looks like after this run, it's supposed to be cold at least through the first full week in March. Bummer. On the other hand, it's not like they've never been wrong before.
    2016: First year. Homemade evaporator out of little woodburning stove with steam tray pans. 6 taps on buckets. 1.1 galls syrup
    2017: Same little homemade evaporator, but souped up. Still 2 steam tray pans. 15 taps on buckets. 4.5 galls syrup.
    2018: Same setup. Limited time (New baby!) Downsized to 12 taps and short season. 2.2 gallons syrup.
    2019: Still very limited time, with a one-year-old. Downsized even further to 7 taps and a short season. 2.1 gallons syrup

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Location
    blandford ma
    Posts
    101

    Default

    Bottled almost 3 gallons today

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    chester, ma
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Hey I'm curious - anyone in Western MA who did tap early: Looking back, it appears that in the foothills of the Berkshires at least, the first week of February should have been a fantastic run, based on recorded temperatures. Did y'all see that, or was everything too frozen up for it to run like it would with those temps later in the season?

    Thanks!

    Gabe O
    2016: First year. Homemade evaporator out of little woodburning stove with steam tray pans. 6 taps on buckets. 1.1 galls syrup
    2017: Same little homemade evaporator, but souped up. Still 2 steam tray pans. 15 taps on buckets. 4.5 galls syrup.
    2018: Same setup. Limited time (New baby!) Downsized to 12 taps and short season. 2.2 gallons syrup.
    2019: Still very limited time, with a one-year-old. Downsized even further to 7 taps and a short season. 2.1 gallons syrup

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
    Location
    chester, ma
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Replaced my old rotted out stovepipe that had some holes as big as three fingers. My gallons per hour evaporation rate went up by 20%!

    I started late, but last week (my second week this year) was huge for me. Most of my five gallon buckets were overflowing. And sugar level this year is the best I've seen in four years of sugaring. Hoping to get another week or so before wrapping things up.

    How's everyone's season going?
    2016: First year. Homemade evaporator out of little woodburning stove with steam tray pans. 6 taps on buckets. 1.1 galls syrup
    2017: Same little homemade evaporator, but souped up. Still 2 steam tray pans. 15 taps on buckets. 4.5 galls syrup.
    2018: Same setup. Limited time (New baby!) Downsized to 12 taps and short season. 2.2 gallons syrup.
    2019: Still very limited time, with a one-year-old. Downsized even further to 7 taps and a short season. 2.1 gallons syrup

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2016
    Location
    Shelburne MA
    Posts
    212

    Default

    Boiling an 80 gallon run right now. Cautiously optimistic about a run early next week


    3AF012C4-758F-4F2A-90A2-5422496A9894.jpg
    55ish taps
    D&G Sportsman 18x63
    RB15 RO Bucket
    Stihl 044 and 026

  10. #20
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Savoy, MA
    Posts
    299

    Default

    Here in Savoy things are going great. Last week was a great run, and this coming week looks like it might be perfect for sap flow. My woods trails into my sugarbush are still covered in snow so I can easily collect sap with my snowmobile without mucking up my trails too bad.
    16x24 Timber Frame Sugar House
    Mason 2x4 Evaporator
    90 trees on buckets

    "Roses are red and violets are purple
    Sugar is sweet and so is maple surple
    "

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