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Thread: 2x4 Drop Flue Sunrise vs. Smoky Lake vs. Badgerland

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Location
    Northeast Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default 2x4 Drop Flue Sunrise vs. Smoky Lake vs. Badgerland

    I am looking for opinions about these 3 drop flue pans. They are all close to the same price.

    The Badgerland and Smoky Lake Hybrid Hobby Pro are made with shiny 22 gauge and have superior craftsmanship. The Sunrise Spitfire has a reversible syrup pan with the draw off in the middle of the evaporator where itís hotter, but the dividers are only spot welded. However, Sunrise will make me a custom unit with (9) 8Ē flues instead of the standard 5Ē. Thatís going to be considerably more surface area than the others.

    I am leaning towards the Sunrise because they are made here in Indiana but was hoping to see what you guys think.

    Thanks.
    Sunrise 2X4 Hobby

    2019
    20 Taps on bucket drop lines
    20 Taps on winebags

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    524

    Default

    I assume you are going from a 2x4 flat pan to flue pan setup? What are your max taps? I'm sure you did but I'll say it anyways, that it is always good to think of the future if you have options to add more taps.
    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

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2018
    Location
    Northeast Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default

    I have a divided flat pan now and we are getting between 10 and 12 GPH. It's really hard to get an accurate boil rate count since we are not using a float box and it's difficult to keep a constant level.

    We collected over 400 gallons off 40 taps last year but this year we will be close to 100 taps. I can't imagine ever getting over 200 taps since we are in farm country. This is just for fun but I have kids in sports and busy at work so I am looking for something that gets over 20 GPH.
    Sunrise 2X4 Hobby

    2019
    20 Taps on bucket drop lines
    20 Taps on winebags

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Temperance Mi
    Posts
    298

    Default

    I would buy local. Sunrise makes really nice equipment.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Location
    Garrettsville,Ohio
    Posts
    370

    Default

    those around us that have bought smoky lake and sunrise recently are very disappointed post sale. customer service and quality are not what they were when they were smaller companies. no one i know of has a bagerland so cant give any input on that.
    whenever you decide use a local guy that has knowledge and sevice to back it up, otherwise when you really need something you will be left high and dry
    Fred Ahrens
    330-206-1606
    Richards Maple Products
    Ohio CDL sales rep
    1500 taps

    dont take life too serious, nobody gets out alive anyways

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Oneida NY
    Posts
    9,835

    Default

    Badgerland is Smoky Lake's economy line.
    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

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Location
    WNY
    Posts
    450

    Default

    I have a badgerland 2x6, which yes is actually a line built by Smoky Lake. Communication was great, and they were very friendly and helpful. I've never had to use them for any warranty work, as nothing has gone wrong. Very pleased with the craftsmanship, though the features as lacking but not due to their skills but rather the price point the pans were designed for.

    For example, there is no flue drain. There are 3 fewer flues and the flue pan is 42 inches rather than 48 in the main Smoky Lake pans. Again, it's an economy set of pans and will not speak poorly of them because the price was right.

    That said, I do wish I would have paid for the SL pans looking back on it. But as a beginner the pans work great and they were very nicely priced.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Location
    almont
    Posts
    148

    Default

    I'm curious to how many gph you get out of your 2x6 badgerland pans. Have thought about buying a set in the future myself
    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
    Nov 2018
    Location
    Northeast Indiana
    Posts
    14

    Default

    I'm curious what your 2x6 does, too. It's advertised at 20-25 but it seems like it should do better than that.

    Fortunately all of my dealings with Sunrise and Smoky Lake have been very positive.
    Sunrise 2X4 Hobby

    2019
    20 Taps on bucket drop lines
    20 Taps on winebags

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    524

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Ross View Post
    I have a divided flat pan now and we are getting between 10 and 12 GPH. It's really hard to get an accurate boil rate count since we are not using a float box and it's difficult to keep a constant level.

    We collected over 400 gallons off 40 taps last year but this year we will be close to 100 taps. I can't imagine ever getting over 200 taps since we are in farm country. This is just for fun but I have kids in sports and busy at work so I am looking for something that gets over 20 GPH.
    Based on what you described I would look at a 2x6. That would keep your boil time around 3-4 hours a day, depending on how much sap you collect and how hard you run the evap. It would also be able to take on more taps if you ever increased size again. Another option would be to buy used 2x6 pans or evaporator. I know Bascom has multiple used pan sets and used evaporators in 2x6 size.
    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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