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Thread: Spring Harvest 2019

  1. #31
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    When I boosted the pressure I didn't change the concentrate flow and it went up some with the increased pressure. If I had adjusted it back down to .5 gpm I might have gotten 14% out of it. I was busy doing other stuff so I turned it back down to 300 psi and let it do it's thing. I normally like to run it at 250 psi and will do so when I go back to recirculating again. It gives me plenty of margin if I need to speed things up.

    I'm glad that you made some nice syrup. Most of mine is either Golden or Amber with excellent flavor. People will buy the Amber but not the Golden. It's a shame because my Golden tastes just as good as my Amber just not quite as intense.
    Russ

    "Red Roof Maples" Where the term "boiling soda" was first introduced to the maple producing world!

    Algier 2x6 evaporator, W F Mason arch
    Lapierre 250 Turbo RO machine
    SP-22 vacuum pump
    1930 Ford Model AA Doodlebug tractor
    1971 IH 454 52hp diesel tractor
    A couple of Honda 4 wheelers
    About a dozen chainsaws and no chickens

  2. #32
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    Barrington, NH
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    I brought home ~270 gal on Wed and another 380 gal Thursday, and with GZ’s 300 gal load, had about 950 gal to process. Single passed it to 7.5% from 4-6pm, and the second pass took it to 15-18%. Started at 8 and finished at 10. Made almost 20 gal of syrup. Tuesday night was over 15 gal. Bottling both tonight, so grade TBD. SSC is 2.1%. Trees must still be thawing out because the flow is getting better, but still not great.

    Downside to these short boils is by the time the grade starts to lighten up, I’m getting ready to shut down. Only boiling for 2 hrs including startup and shutdown.

    Really liking the 2-pass system better than recirc’ing. It’s getting through the sap quicker and allowing me to start earlier with high conc levels. It also gives me more flexibility. Now I just have a sap dump tank. I can process as much of it as I want and save some for the next day if I want. It also allows me to accept evening deliveries without messing up my conc. levels. Wish I had done this sooner.

  3. #33
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    Dec 2002
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    I like having a dedicated sweet tank too. It frees up the bulk tank for the same reasons that you've found. I haven't used it yet this season but I will.
    Russ

    "Red Roof Maples" Where the term "boiling soda" was first introduced to the maple producing world!

    Algier 2x6 evaporator, W F Mason arch
    Lapierre 250 Turbo RO machine
    SP-22 vacuum pump
    1930 Ford Model AA Doodlebug tractor
    1971 IH 454 52hp diesel tractor
    A couple of Honda 4 wheelers
    About a dozen chainsaws and no chickens

  4. #34
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    east kingston, nh
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    sounds like the sweet tank it is working out good. since you are really only running it through twice then it must keep the concentrate much cooler keeping your grade a little lighter. recirc heats it up alot especially on warmer days. maybe something for me in the future. I need to fix my releaser issue first moving the releaser closer to the sugarhouse and investing in an electric releaser will be the next improvement I think. looking at the CDL horizontal electric releasers are looking pretty sexy. need to get a quote see how much $$$ I need to set aside.
    may your sap be at 3%
    Brad

    www.willowcreeksugarhouse.com
    585 or so on Vacuum, about 60 on bucket and tubing
    Welsh 1397 vein pump and a Lap mech vert releaser
    2x6 ss phaneuf Drop flue, Leader woodsaver blower, homemade hood
    300gph H2O RO
    husquvarna 562 XP
    less than its here 2018 gonna be the best yet... fingers crossed always...

  5. #35
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    Dec 2002
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    Loudon NH
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    Quote Originally Posted by red maples View Post
    sounds like the sweet tank it is working out good. since you are really only running it through twice then it must keep the concentrate much cooler keeping your grade a little lighter. recirc heats it up alot especially on warmer days. maybe something for me in the future. I need to fix my releaser issue first moving the releaser closer to the sugarhouse and investing in an electric releaser will be the next improvement I think. looking at the CDL horizontal electric releasers are looking pretty sexy. need to get a quote see how much $$$ I need to set aside.
    Lapierre makes the best releasers but I hear good things about the MES releasers too. The price on the MES membranes blows the competition away so I'm sure that the releasers are reasonable too. I've heard more negative information on CDL releasers than I have heard good.
    Russ

    "Red Roof Maples" Where the term "boiling soda" was first introduced to the maple producing world!

    Algier 2x6 evaporator, W F Mason arch
    Lapierre 250 Turbo RO machine
    SP-22 vacuum pump
    1930 Ford Model AA Doodlebug tractor
    1971 IH 454 52hp diesel tractor
    A couple of Honda 4 wheelers
    About a dozen chainsaws and no chickens

  6. #36
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
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    east kingston, nh
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    ah that sucks. I am just shopping now anyway. those are expensive releasers just for starters. because of the way they are set up. depending on how they are set up they can be as low as 24" and in my so been running the placement and positioning in my head. I can get stuff from lapierre from just about anyone, direct, bascom's, maple guys. so we'll see how it goes get quotes from all of them see who has the best price.
    may your sap be at 3%
    Brad

    www.willowcreeksugarhouse.com
    585 or so on Vacuum, about 60 on bucket and tubing
    Welsh 1397 vein pump and a Lap mech vert releaser
    2x6 ss phaneuf Drop flue, Leader woodsaver blower, homemade hood
    300gph H2O RO
    husquvarna 562 XP
    less than its here 2018 gonna be the best yet... fingers crossed always...

  7. #37
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    Apr 2009
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    east kingston, nh
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    oh yeah talking about short boiling and grade going up right at the end of the boil.

    So went to one of the classes at the international meeting it was Dr. Perkins from UVM he was discussing a bunch of things with climate change and maximizing sap production, what they are doing is not boiling every day but concentrating everyday and then storing it in a refrigerated tank set at I think they said 30* or 32* don't remember exactly but slightly below freezing then boiling it all at once. there is very little bacteria growth and since they aren't doing a bunch of small batch boils then the grade comes way up and there is a longer boil and its alot more efficient beacuse there aren;t the warm up and cool down periods associated with short boils. just thought that was interesting. it has saved them on fuel (don't know wood or oil ) and instead of late nights every night he has been able to cut his payroll during maple season and no overtime because they pretty much are only working 8hrs a day. Something to think about. maybe put in a walk in freezer!!! they are only about $15 grand for an 8 x 10 space then you can use it store your syrup (in a perfect world right? )
    may your sap be at 3%
    Brad

    www.willowcreeksugarhouse.com
    585 or so on Vacuum, about 60 on bucket and tubing
    Welsh 1397 vein pump and a Lap mech vert releaser
    2x6 ss phaneuf Drop flue, Leader woodsaver blower, homemade hood
    300gph H2O RO
    husquvarna 562 XP
    less than its here 2018 gonna be the best yet... fingers crossed always...

  8. #38
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    Mar 2008
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    Barrington, NH
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    With the 2 pass system, sap temps are staying cooler and syrup has been easier to boil…guessing because less bacteria growth. For next season, I'd recommend adding one if you can.

    Saturday night’s boil was about 1350 gal. Boiled for a few hours. I took the first 4 gal and put it in one canner, and everything else went into the electric canner. Had about 22 gal in that canner by night’s end and bottled it Sunday. Graded out at 55% LT, so this method worked. Moving forward, I’ll stockpile the first draw syrup and bottle it at once as dark syrup for this coming weekend. Saturday was the annual tank levelling ceremony with Jim. Problem with putting a tank in a wet area is it sinks. The tank is just off the ground, so not much room to build a platform underneath it. May need to think of a better solution.

    Sunday. In the morning, I went to the woods while it was still cold out, I wanted to drill/glue the new water sensors and get the system tested, but found the sap was hammering. It was cold with a cold wind and probably the best flow I’d seen this season. I don’t get it. Unfortunately, the new system is on hold until the weekend of the 30th because of maple weekend. The ex. float system is working for now. I mounted some cabinets that have been kicking around for a couple years and that cleaned up my bench. Sure I’ll find more to put in them. Brought home almost 500 gal, which is less than I thought considering the flow I was seeing, but guessing only half the woods was running. Vac is holding steady at 26.5”.

    Brad, the new tank is a bulk tank that was working when taken out of service. I wonder what it’d take to get the chiller working again. I could store 650 gal of 8% conc in there…second pass it back to the head tank…hmmm. That’s 2500 gal of raw sap.

  9. #39
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    Mar 2008
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    Barrington, NH
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    Processed 1150 gal of sap last night from 2 days of collection, of which GZ was ~300 gal of it. SSC holding steady at 2%...really the only saving grace of this cold weather. Did the initial draw into one canner and the balance in the other. Pretty sure still grading out at an AR.

    Had two hiccups last night. Dog got sprayed by a skunk again…second time in a week. She’s now relegated to the house while I’m boiling at night. Second is wiring on the evap. blower. It vibrates a lot because of the blower and a wire connection came apart and shorted out. Quick wire repair and then back in business, but I think I need to wire in an electrical box with plug and connect it with an extension cord. One more thing to add to the project list.

  10. #40
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    Mar 2008
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    Barrington, NH
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    It’s been a while since I posted, so a quick catchup.

    Last week, I boiled Wednesday and Thursday’s sap Thursday night. Sap came from me, GZ and RS. Good night overall and made some syrup. Grade is bouncing on either side of the AR/DR line. SSC is holding at 2.5%. I boiled all the sap I had to make room for big sap runs Friday and over the weekend…

    So, Friday ended up being cold and miserable…sap didn’t run so well… Stayed up until 1:30 am getting everything ready for maple weekend…long day. Ended up having to work half the day, so it set me back a bit. Bottled up a bunch of syrup and cleaned the sugarhouse.

    Maple weekend went well. Good turnout, and crew did a great job with visitors. We had enough sap to last through the day and then some. I need to do a better job gauging when I need to start squeezing down the last of the sap, so I can shut the evap down at closing time and not an hour later to get the last of the sap through. During maple weekend, I recirc, so I don’t like keeping it around since it’s been through the RO so many times.

    Sunday, another good turnout and things went well. Almost deep sixed the flue pan though when it almost ran out. For some reason, the sap float wasn’t letting sap in and I forgot to plug in my alarm. I good push on the float and it got sap moving…close one!

    Again, sap flow is still blah Getting 0.5-0.6gpt per day. I read on trader of these guys getting big sap runs, and I’m stuck in my sugarhouse twiddling my thumbs wishing there was sap. Walking the woods, it looks like there’s big sections of my woods that aren’t even running. I think there’s still a lot of frost in the ground. I logger stopped by the other day and said he hasn’t seen this much frost in the woods before.

    My guess, since my sugar content has been so high all season, almost all my sap is coming from sugars. Getting frustrating because if the trees don’t get moving soon, the season will be over.

    Oh, and last night, my bulk tank ended up on the ground…not cool. Note to self, don’t build a tank stand just before maple season when there’s frost in the ground. I’m thinking the 4-tank system is on hold until next season. It was good while it lasted.

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