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Thread: Elevated IBC Totes

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Crivitz, WI

    Default Elevated IBC Totes

    Evening, I have access to cheap, and clean IBC Totes. I can get 275, or 330 gallon tanks.

    Was thinking about elevating them so the valve is 5 to 6 feet off the ground. I'm concerned with building a strong enough platform to hold two of them, plus myself if I need to adjust anything during the season.
    What is the safest way to do that?

    Digging thru old posts couldn't find anything that specific, but did come across using a smaller head tank, and pumping up from a tote or barrel. Thoughts on that as well?

    I'm small time up to about 100 taps, plus I can buy sap. 12v, solar, power unless I run extension cords across driveway. Collecting sap in a small ATV trailer with a 30 gallon leg tank. Want to be able to only pump it, or gravity feed after collecting and dumping it into ATV tank.
    2013 15 Homemade Taps, Milk Jugs, Turkey Fryer, 3 Gallons Syrup
    2014 Finishing my college degree, looked longingly at the Maples all spring
    2015 26 1/2 Real taps, Milk Jugs, Homemade 20x25 pan on propane, 5+ Gallons Syrup
    2016 50 Taps, Milk Jugs, Homemade 25 by 48 pan on propane block arch, 8 1/2 Gallons Syrup

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2010


    Could stack 2 totes and leve some water in bottom tote. Or put a stack of good pallets under tote. Or build 4x4/6x6 wooden frame with cross supports like x's

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Ashtabula County, Ohio


    If you have access to railroad ties, stack them like they do when raising a house
    Now just a sap producer. Hopefully 1000+ taps for 2020
    Gast 3040 vac pump, Lapierre electric releaser
    Syrup made 2010:36 gal 2011:126 gal 2012:81 gal 2013:248 gal 2014: 329.5 gal 2015:305 gal 2016:316 gal 2017:258 gal 2018:147 gal 2019:91 gal
    Tapping the same trees my great, great and great grandfathers tapped.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Oneida NY


    My head tank platform is 5.5' off the ground. I built it using 4x4 PT posts with 4x4s setting on top of them. I have the legs and the cross 4x4's directly under where the tank legs on my original tank were. The in-ground legs set on concrete blocks down 3.5'. Then above that I have 2x4's side to side 16" O.C. and on those I used 2x6, for floor boards spaced about 1.5" apart. I have one diagonal on the end of the platform and all lumber except the diagonal is PT (pressure treated)
    While I don't use IBC totes for a head tank, I originally had a 415 gal SS milk tank on the platform, I then changed to a 200 gal one and I changed again to a 150 gal sap tank. The changes were never because of the weight, but rather because I don't like having that much concentrate ahead. That platform has been up and shows no need for repair in 9 years use. I'm sure at some point I will need to change the in-ground legs but the rest should outlast me. One end of my 8x12 platform is attached to my sugarhouse, which is also on 4x4 posts, 4' in the ground and on big slabs of concrete.
    Last edited by maple flats; 07-01-2019 at 09:36 AM.
    Dave Klish about 1320 taps in '15, down to about 700 in '16, up to 1000 for 2019?
    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
    website: www.cnymaple.com

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2016


    We built the platform for our 4x8x4 (1200G) head tank last year. Ran out of time and money so we used a 500 G poly tank last year but should have the new one this fall. We built it similar to what mapleflats described but with 6x6's due to the size of our tank. It's all about a good foundation, so definitely set it all on concrete blocks.
    In regards to a pump, we pump across my buddy's lawn to avoid tearing it up in the spring. Probably 80' of line and a 8-10' rise from where we pump to the head tank. We use the 1" predator pump from Harbor Freight and it works great. Pumps about 13G per minute in our setup.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Peoria, IL


    Your answer will depend on what you have to build with or attach to. For my elevated tanks, I have 2x elevated platforms built. Both are built like mini decks. On the building side there is a ledger board attached with bolts through the kitchen concrete block walls. On the other side I used reclaimed 4x6 posts sunk 3ft into the ground. Then build decked platforms beefy enough to support the weight. When estimating weight just use 8 pounds per gallon. One platform has a 550 sap gallon tank and the other is 50 gallon head tank.

    You can build the platforms just the size of the tank but my recommendation would be to build it oversized enough to be able to safely stand on the platform and access the tank opening to wash or rinse them out. I usually rinse mine out every time it is empty.
    2019 - 150 taps 3/16 shurflo, Deer Run 125 dolly RO - 73 gallons
    2018 - 120 taps 3/16 hybrid (shurflo), 2x6 raised flue w/hood, homemade arch w/ AUF & AOF - 34.5 gallons
    2017 - 60 taps 3/16 gravity, oil tank arck w/ steam pans - 12.5 gallons

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