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Thread: Finally building my Sugar Shack!

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    almont
    Posts
    149

    Default Finally building my Sugar Shack!

    After 4 years boiling outside I have finally made the move to build a sugar shack. The excavating contractor came late yesterday and stripped the top soil and hauled in a crushed limestone base and leveled and compacted it. My shack is going to be 12' x 18' with an 8/12 pitch and 6' cupola in the center. I am building it on a treated wood floor system. All framing above the floor will be with native Michigan rough sawn pine from a northern Michigan Amish saw mill. I am going to make every attempt to make it look as vintage as possible. Can't wait to boil inside next year out of the weather.
    Clay Stroup
    Stroup's Sugar Bush
    Almont, MI

    2016: 20 taps, 2 gallons
    2017: 80 taps, 12 gallons
    2018: 92 taps, 16 gallons
    2019: 110 taps, 34 gallons
    Mason 2 x 5 flat pan
    Mason Steam Pan finishing set up
    D & G 7" Filter Press
    Next Gen 45 gph RO
    John Deere Gator 4 x 2
    Boiling outside but plans for 14 x 18 shack in near future

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2019
    Location
    Middlesex, Vermont
    Posts
    124

    Default

    That’s awesome clay!!! Pumped for ya! I’m excited for that day to come but will take several years in the driveway as well haha.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Mead Maple "It's for the kids..."
    Paul Cerminara
    2019 - First season ever
    -Homemade 275 gallon oil drum arch
    -75 taps, all on traditional buckets and drops into 5 gallon buckets
    -Goal: 3 gallons
    -Season Total: 7.5 gallons - pulled taps after running out of firewood and time
    -Fear: Becoming a member of MT.com and getting bit

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Albion PA
    Posts
    4,633

    Default

    Awesome! You will love it!
    take and post lots of pictures too!
    Regards,
    Chris
    Casbohm Maple and Honey
    600 roadside taps
    3x10 King, WRU, AOF and AUF
    12" SIRO Filter Press.
    2015 Ford F250 PSD sap hauler
    One Golden named Maggie Cat named Lucy
    Too many Cub Cadets
    Ford Jubilee and several Allis WD's, and IH tractors

    www.mapleandhoney.com

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Oneida NY
    Posts
    9,875

    Default

    I only boiled one year outside and that summer I started building my sugarhouse. Doing it alone and cutting the trees to be sawn by a neighbor slowed it down for sure, but I wanted to be able to say my 16x24 sugarhouse was all made from trees off my land. The next season I had a roof a, walls, doors and a partial floor made of wood, but it was a huge improvement. In 2-3 years I removed the wooden floor and poured concrete.
    At this point my only regret is that I only made a 16x24' sugar house. At the time I thought that was huge for what I had planned. Lots of room all around the evaporator and bottling pan. Now just 17 seasons later I have 2 freezers, an RO room, a wood rack that I can carry with my tractor and forks, a filter press, a water jacket bottler, a 2x6 finisher, a micro wave, solar inverter and charge controller, a larger evaporator, a draw off tank on both the evaporator and the finisher, a 28x36" rolling rack, 6' tall with commercial size backing sheets for shelves (often used in bakeries), a sink and a water heater, plus about 22' of 2' deep counters against the outside walls. I should have made the sugarhouse 24'x36'. I had heard the saying about barns or storage buildings, "figure what you need, double it and you will have half enough", I just failed apply it to sugar houses.
    Over the years I have often planned out an addition to add a kitchen, bathroom, and a cold cellar with a hoist to store barrels of syrup but when I had the time I didn't have the money, when I had the money I never had the time.
    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. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Lake County Ohio
    Posts
    1,114

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by claystroup View Post
    After 4 years boiling outside I have finally made the move to build a sugar shack..... I am going to make every attempt to make it look as vintage as possible. Can't wait to boil inside next year out of the weather.
    Vintage is a good thing, you will never regret having a beautiful sugarhouse. I know - and have never looked back. Congrats to you for sure!
    John Allin

    14x18 Hemlock Timber Frame Sugar House 2009
    Leader 2x6 w/Patriot Raised Flue Pan 2009
    Leader Steam Hood 2014 - Clear Filter Press 2015
    Leader Revolution Pan and SS Pre-Heater 2016
    H20 Innovations Air Injection 2019
    CDL AirTech Pump Hi Vacuum 2019
    06' Gator HPX to collect wood & sap
    14' Ski-Doo Tundra for winter work in the woods
    Great Family 3 grown kids+spouses and 7 grand kids who like the woods
    7th Gen Canadian - Raised in Chardon Ohio - Maple Capital of the World...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    almont
    Posts
    149

    Default

    100_9119.jpg100_9120.jpg100_9121.jpg100_9122.jpg
    2 weeks into my sugar shack project and the sod/topsoil has been stripped from the site by neighbor who is a small excavator and 20 yards of crushed limestone base has been placed and compacted. I had to build a short retaining wall on one end due to the pitch of the ground. Today I placed (4) 18' 4" x 6"s for the foundation. Tomorrow I will build the floor joist/floor package then it will be time to start building walls with the rough sawn lumber I purchased at the Amish saw mill. Hope to be roughed and shingled by Memorial Day to beat the summer heat.
    Clay Stroup
    Stroup's Sugar Bush
    Almont, MI

    2016: 20 taps, 2 gallons
    2017: 80 taps, 12 gallons
    2018: 92 taps, 16 gallons
    2019: 110 taps, 34 gallons
    Mason 2 x 5 flat pan
    Mason Steam Pan finishing set up
    D & G 7" Filter Press
    Next Gen 45 gph RO
    John Deere Gator 4 x 2
    Boiling outside but plans for 14 x 18 shack in near future

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Nashville, MI
    Posts
    59

    Default

    Clay, You are really going to enjoy boiling inside. Are you planning to put in electric and water?

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    almont
    Posts
    149

    Default

    Electric for sure. Just need to run a line from my larger barn about 15' away. No plans for water but I normally run a garden hose from the house which is about 80' away to help with cleaning things up.
    Clay Stroup
    Stroup's Sugar Bush
    Almont, MI

    2016: 20 taps, 2 gallons
    2017: 80 taps, 12 gallons
    2018: 92 taps, 16 gallons
    2019: 110 taps, 34 gallons
    Mason 2 x 5 flat pan
    Mason Steam Pan finishing set up
    D & G 7" Filter Press
    Next Gen 45 gph RO
    John Deere Gator 4 x 2
    Boiling outside but plans for 14 x 18 shack in near future

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Northern Michigan
    Posts
    410

    Default

    Congratulations on getting a good start on your new sugar shack. When we built ours, we didn't get started until early June and I wished we had started earlier because we had 80 degree days while I was laying the blocks for the footings. Keep sharing the pictures.
    Gary
    16' X 24' Sugarhouse
    2' X 6' Leader Inferno Arch with Revolution Raised-Flue Pans, Smoky Lake preheater and hood
    Deer Run Maple gas-powered 250 RO
    WesFab 7" filter press
    Kubota 1100 RTV with tracks and 125 gallon tank for transporting sap
    600+ taps on gravity and vacuum
    Very supportive wife who is the best coworker
    http://mapletrader.com/community/sho...ing-Sugarhouse

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    almont
    Posts
    149

    Default

    Got the treated floor system done yesterday. 2 x 6 that are 16" on center with lots of bracing and 3/4" treated flooring. Now on to framing the walls with the rough sawn lumber from the Amish saw mill. Not bad for a 60 year old retired guy. 100_9127.jpg100_9128.jpg100_9128.jpg100_9129.jpg100_9126.jpg
    Last edited by claystroup; 05-04-2019 at 10:17 PM.
    Clay Stroup
    Stroup's Sugar Bush
    Almont, MI

    2016: 20 taps, 2 gallons
    2017: 80 taps, 12 gallons
    2018: 92 taps, 16 gallons
    2019: 110 taps, 34 gallons
    Mason 2 x 5 flat pan
    Mason Steam Pan finishing set up
    D & G 7" Filter Press
    Next Gen 45 gph RO
    John Deere Gator 4 x 2
    Boiling outside but plans for 14 x 18 shack in near future

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