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Thread: My first attempt at small scale RO

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Oxford, OH
    Posts
    8

    Default My first attempt at small scale RO

    After reading a few others post about their DIY RO systems, I decided to try it myself. This is what I've come up with. I'm just a backyard hobbyist with only 15-20 taps and I do my boiling on the weekends. I'm hoping that I can significantly reduce my boiling times by processing the sap through this system first. I will be tapping my trees in a few days and will give it a test soon thereafter. I'd be interested in hearing any suggestions or criticisms.
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  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    121

    Default

    Looks good - keep us posted. I might have to bite the bullet one of these years and build an RO. I'm mostly concerned about storage space for concentrate, permeate and the rig itself.

    How much money do you have invested so far, if you don't mind my asking. And where did you source your parts?
    Dave
    2014 30 taps, steam tray pans
    2015 ~100 taps, in conjunction with University of Louisville
    2x5 Smoky Lake hybrid pan

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2019
    Location
    Oxford, OH
    Posts
    8

    Default

    I have about $300 invested in this, ordering most of the parts from Amazon and picking up the rest from Home Depot. After I built this I saw something about The RO Bucket, https://www.therobucket.com/Wordpress/, which looks pretty nice and might inspire me to reconfigure mine into a more storage-friendly configuration.

    I'm doing my boiling on a few propane-fueled turkey fryers. Last year I ended up with a little less than 3 gallons of syrup when all was said and done. Maybe for next year I'll work on some sort of wood-fired arch and evaporator. At my small scale I don't expect to ever recoup the cost, but it's worth it just for the enjoyment I get from it. I saw one member of this forum with a username of "$1000 pancakes" which sounds about right.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Louisville, Kentucky
    Posts
    121

    Default

    Ha, ha. Yep, it's about the journey!
    Dave
    2014 30 taps, steam tray pans
    2015 ~100 taps, in conjunction with University of Louisville
    2x5 Smoky Lake hybrid pan

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    Waccabuc NY
    Posts
    4

    Default

    When I finally get my RO, I am going to have to change my name to $1500 Pancakes.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Location
    OH
    Posts
    107

    Default

    Oxford - looking good. I made a very similar RO 2 years ago. It will process about 8 gallons in (4 gallons out) per hour. Just adjust it so you get a 50/50 ratio of concentrate to permeate. You'll cut your time in half by doing so.
    And remember that concentrate will spoil quicker than raw sap, so try to get it boiled within a few hours of making it.
    2020: ?? taps. 3 full size steam table pans on a custom 6x water heater natural gas burner setup.
    2019: 31 taps on silvers. Back porch gas cook top with 2 full size steam table pans. An amazing 14.9 gallons in my backyard!
    2018: 22 taps on 9 silvers. Propane turkey fryer and full size steam table pan on electric stove. I made 4.25 gallons in my backyard!

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