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Thread: Cold snap - store sap or store concentrate?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Wind Lake, WI
    Posts
    341

    Default Cold snap - store sap or store concentrate?

    Looking for those with wisdom in this kind of situatio. We've got another day or so of sap flow following a good weekend here and then it'll get cold for a few days. Sap is in a 275 gallon iBC tote and it'll be nearly full. Thinking I'm better off running it through the RO and the weather will keep that cold (in 55 gallon drums) vs dealing with a giant block of ice in the tote and then having no way of doing anything with until mid-week next week (and then not having enough storage). I have to boil outdoors (yeah, I should change that) and there is a winter storm watch for Tuesday/Wednesday so that wouldn't be enjoyable to boil in. Also, forecast says boil Sunday or be miserable after that. Thoughts? I would think concentrate would keep fine at those temps and the barrels sit on the north side of my shop out of any sun.

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    42.82N
    2015 - Small operation. 25 buckets. One excited 5 year old and one 35 year old that feels 5 again.
    2016 - One year older. New Homemade 2x4 Arch, Smoky Lake Pan and looking at 52 maples, 17 box elders and 2 walnut trees.
    2017 - Shurflo 4008 hooked to 42 stingy silver maples and a few Norways. A couple buckets on sugars and Norways. 10 box elders.
    2018 - ...a few more taps.
    2019 - ...more taps on 3/16 gravity. This spiral is heading downward in a hurry.
    2020 - 4x400 RO - RB20 (uh-oh!)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
    Location
    Stafford Springs, CT
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    836

    Default

    I've been told by several people that concentrate spoils very quickly. If I need to hold off on boiling due to work and other issues, I typically just hold the sap and use an axe to punch a hole through the ice. The sap is actually more concentrated because the ice is water and the sap is nice and cold in the center.
    About 300 taps
    2'x6' air tight arch
    Semi complete 12'x24' sugarhouse in Somers, CT
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  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2017
    Location
    Harvard, MA
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    174

    Default

    I think thatís a goood strategy and youíll be fine as long as the sweet isnít exposed to above mid-30s (refrigerator temps). Passing along what Iíve read here (I donít know the chemistry), concentrate also wonít freeze as quickly as sap due to the higher sugar %.
    Still a newbie after 3 seasons.
    2016: 20 taps on buckets, 4 gallons made on a borrowed 2x3 steel arch.
    2017: 32 taps on buckets, 8 gallons of syrup, on a "loaner" Lapierre 19x48 Mini-Pro loaned by a friend. Makeshift 8x8 sugar shack.
    2018: 80 taps with 3 new neighbors on tubing. New 10x12 sugar shack, Lapierre Jr 2x5 evaporator. Made 17 gallons, Sold around 5 gallons of syrup.
    2019: 100 taps, 60 tapped on Feb 21. Added a small RO.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Tolland, Ct
    Posts
    96

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by tgormley358 View Post
    I think that’s a goood strategy and you’ll be fine as long as the sweet isn’t exposed to above mid-30s (refrigerator temps). Passing along what I’ve read here (I don’t know the chemistry), concentrate also won’t freeze as quickly as sap due to the higher sugar %.
    so can you freeze concentrate intentionally with no issues, like boil down a 5 gallon bucket to 1 gallon, then freeze that 1 gallon in a chest freezer? once you have 5 gallons of the concentrate thaw them and then boil them together? essentially batch the frozen concrete?
    2019 - 1st year 14 taps 1 Gallon Jugs + 4x 5-Gallon Buckets + Propane Grill + lots of headaches so far

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Wind Lake, WI
    Posts
    341

    Default

    Yeah, sap in any form will freeze fine.

    For those wondering; I chose not to concentrate and let my IBC tote build some ice to allow me to ride out a decent warmup. RO processed more slowly when I did, but it was fine. Allowed me to keep incoming sap cold those warm days. Would have probably been just fine concentrating as well, but it all worked out.
    42.82N
    2015 - Small operation. 25 buckets. One excited 5 year old and one 35 year old that feels 5 again.
    2016 - One year older. New Homemade 2x4 Arch, Smoky Lake Pan and looking at 52 maples, 17 box elders and 2 walnut trees.
    2017 - Shurflo 4008 hooked to 42 stingy silver maples and a few Norways. A couple buckets on sugars and Norways. 10 box elders.
    2018 - ...a few more taps.
    2019 - ...more taps on 3/16 gravity. This spiral is heading downward in a hurry.
    2020 - 4x400 RO - RB20 (uh-oh!)

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