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Thread: Building my Drum Evaporator

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Elliottsburg, PA
    Posts
    1,908

    Default Building my Drum Evaporator

    Howdy all, I had started to show my progress in another thread and it was hi-jacked by talk about Governors???

    So I decided to start a new.

    Well my plans are to use a 55 gal drum with a 20x34 pan.
    I will post pics of my progress of building the evaporater for those who care.

    Any tips, hints or ideas are more than weclome.

    So far I got the drum and I have made the legs.
    The legs are made from 1" black pipe 12" long I welded washers and nuts to ne end of each and threaded a bolt with a washer welded on the head. Now I will be able to level the evap where ever I place it.
    1st Generation Hobby Maple Producer, you got to start somewhere.
    222 Taps, all on Vacuum! No more buckets.
    Lapierre 2'x5' raised flue w/Hood and Preheater
    Surge SP11, Lapierre Hobby Releaser
    Modified 5" Filter Press made by Daryl with a Gear Pump
    Homemade 2 membrane RO
    Kabota RTV Sap Hauler

    Hardy's Maple Syrup on Facebook

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2007
    Location
    Starksboro, Vermont
    Posts
    335

    Default

    I made a arch like yours. The biggest thing that helped me was adding a small fan blowing in under the grates. The fan was one of the small (about 3 or 4 inch) square framed one that you can get at any hardware store. But you may have this already figured out.
    Matt

    2x6 Phaneuf raised flue pans
    homemade oil burning arch & hood
    homemade RO,auto draw-off, releaser,auto-canning valve, filter press, ext.....
    850 taps

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Location
    Huntington, VT
    Posts
    38

    Default

    I started on the same exact rig in 2001. I would reccommend lining the arch with some half bricks to help it hold in the heat. Also, you may want to build a brick wall in the back of the barrel about 3/4 of the way back to force the heat and flames up to the pan and over before it exits the stack in the back. They do it with the half pints and it works great to keep the heat on the pan.

    Good luck and enjoy...I only had my barrel for one year before I upgraded. Keep that in mind...

    Mike

  4. #4
    Pete33Vt Guest

    Default

    Sounds like your coming along.Keep up the good work and most important have fun doing it. Can't wait to see more.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Location
    Porter, Maine
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    383

    Default

    Dennis if you don't have a door yet , you might want to pick up a barrel stove kit , the cast door has a frame, you just trace the opening , cut it out bolt it on, this might help having your door in place or knowing where the door is before you layout your cut line on the barrel. You can also use the cast flue collar on the back of your drum from the kit.It has a curve or arch to it so you'll need to use the hammer to help the drum match the curve. Don't be afraid of it, pound the crap out of it. If you over tighten the bolts in the collar , you'll break the cast. I know this,

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Elliottsburg, PA
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    Default

    Never thought about adding a fan to such a small setup, I might have to look it that. I assume you mean a 4" box fan sort of what is in computers but bigger?

    I was thinking about fire brick for the sides but not for the back. Once I get the top cut out I will have a better idea on the size of grates and I will also now look at arching it up to the flue.

    I guess with the raised back portion I would not need to have a fire all the way to the back. I think that idea is starting to sound better already.

    I saw in catalogs the kits you can get to convert a drum into a wood stove. The kit comes with a door, like you mentioned, a flue collar, and legs. It would be nice to get just the door but I could not find any place that would sell just the door. I have to stop at a local wood stove dealer to get 6" stove pipe maybe I will ask him about the door.

    Thanks for the tip and ideas, going this morning when I get out of work to pick up some steel to finish the base for the barrel to sit on. I will post more pics as I get more done.
    1st Generation Hobby Maple Producer, you got to start somewhere.
    222 Taps, all on Vacuum! No more buckets.
    Lapierre 2'x5' raised flue w/Hood and Preheater
    Surge SP11, Lapierre Hobby Releaser
    Modified 5" Filter Press made by Daryl with a Gear Pump
    Homemade 2 membrane RO
    Kabota RTV Sap Hauler

    Hardy's Maple Syrup on Facebook

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Newport, NH
    Posts
    1,008

    Default

    Hi Dennis,
    Yup I started out the same way, with a barrell, and it just crapped out this past spring ( used it for 6 seasons).
    Get the barrel kit as mentioned and as far as building up the back I used sand which was a mistake. I should have used vermiculite, it doesn't cause the barrel to sweat when it's hot out. Oh yeah, put brick on the vermiculite.
    About the fan, hell use two!! That really works well, don't have to fight to keep the pan cranking. If you get the barrel kit, attach the fans to a "Y" duct and feed it right into the draft door. You'll need to keep it back about
    18" - 20" as the plastic fans will melt from the heat coming back!
    I used cast iron barbecue grates, they would last about 2 years and we'd burn them right out.
    Most definately line the barrel with fire brick.
    Send me a PM with your email address and I can send you some pics.
    Have fun and enjoy. We sure have!!!!

    Dave
    2x5 SS home design on a home design arch w/ forced draft
    SS Evaporation Enhancement Unit
    Home design filter / canner
    220 taps (160 on line, 60 buckets)
    S-10 pickup w/65 gal. tank
    8x16 sugarhouse w/ attached woodshed
    A wife, family and friends that love to help!!

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Location
    Elliottsburg, PA
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    1,908

    Default

    I never thought about using BBQ grill grates, I was going to fab myself a set out of small diameter Re-bar.

    Fans, I have a few laying around here that have metal bodies but I think the blades are plastic. Keeping them back with a piece of duct work would help.

    Thanks

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    TALLMADGE,OHIO
    Posts
    202

    Default

    even large diameter rebar will "melt" in the fire you will need something tougher
    temp leave of sugar due to job

    dont take life too serious, nobody gets out alive anyways

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Location
    Norwood, NY
    Posts
    1,884

    Default

    An old cast iron radiator (house type) are the best grates you will ever find.
    Maple syrup makers never die, they just evaporate.

    Kubota M-5040, RTV900 with tracks, one very empty sugarhouse.

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